17 diverse contemporaries to read even though summer is gone

diverse contemporaries rec

with fall approching faster than it should and summer almost gone, i realized that three months is not enough to read all the cute summer contemporaries, which, to me, is a sad thing. but who says you only have to read them during the summer? i would be so unfair to them. that’s why i decided to list 17 diverse contemporaries to read even though the summer is gone (*sobs*):

the upside of unrequited by becky albertalli

30653853one of my recent reads, and one of my ultimate faves. albertalli delivers such a wonderful story, with a diverse cast, swoon-worthy love interests, and cute romance. i can’t recommend this book enough.

main diversity aspect: fat, jewish main character.

noteworthy by riley redgate

31447601a story about self-discovery, love, music, and friendship, where “PITCH PERFECT meet SHE’S THE MAN”. i read this book about five months ago, and i remember being so amazed and happy after finishing it.

main diversity aspects: chinese-american bisexual main character, japanese-american love interest

how to make a wish by ashley herring blake

26626118this is one of the most beautiful stories i have ever read. it’s about girls falling in love, finding themselves, and being brave enough to face reality and grief. and it’s honestly so realistic and smoothly written that it left me speechless.

trigger warning: parent abuse

main diversity aspects: bisexual main character, black lesbian love interest, f/f romance

written in the stars by aisha saeed

22521951i, a heartless person who never cries over books, nearly sobbed when i was done with this one. it’s so beautiful, and teaches you so much about pakistani culture, from clothes to food to architecture.

trigger warning: rape, violence

main diversity aspect: an all-muslim cast

kissing in america by margo rabb

18478083this is, in my opinion, one of the most underrated contemporaries ever. it’s about road-trips, finding yourself, and loving yourself. and if that doesn’t convince you to read this book, i don’t know what will.

main diversity aspect: jewish main character

the hate u give by angie thomas

32075671inspired by the #BlackLivesMatter events, THE HATE U GIVE was #1 NYT bestseller for so many weeks that i lost count. and it deserves it. it’s inspirational, it’s funny, and it’s thoughtful. and it’s going to be a movie! so if you haven’t read this book yet, i honestly don’t know what you’re doing with your life.

main diversity aspect: black main character

geekerella by ashley poston

30724132if you’re looking for Another Cinderella Story with fandoms, something predictable but still cute, and not 100% realistic, try GEEKERELLA. it may not be for everybody, but i personally enjoyed it (which i’m surprised i did, actually).

main diversity aspect: black love interest

aristotle and dante discover the secrets of the universe by benjamin alire saènz

12000020while the writing is very monotone in this one, the story is very beautiful. it’s about sexuality, love and first times. i did not expect to love it as much as i did.

main diversity aspect: mexican-american main character, m/m romance

how it feels to fly by kathyn holmes

23603597this is a book that portrays anxiety in doing art so well, it scared me how much i related to it. not only that, but the story is wonderful itself. i can’t believe how underrated this book is.

trigger warning: panic attacks

main diversity aspect: main character with depression and anxiety

simon vs. the homo sapiens agenda by becky albertalli

19547856this is my personal go-to book if i want something to put a smile on my face. it’s quick, cute, funny, and it doesn’t need a lot of concentration while reading. but at the same time it makes you think, and deals with so many social issues. + the movie is coming out on march 2018.

main diversity aspect: gay main character

everything leads to you by nina lacour

18667779this book guys. this book is BEAUTIFUL. while it’s slow at times, the writing takes your breath away, and the setting is so aesthetically pleasing (?). the f/f romance is so subtle and sweet. *sigh*

however this may not be for everybody. while some think the writing is subtle, others find it dull and empty.

main diversity aspect: lesbian main character, f/f romance

queens of geek by jen wilde

28245707this is one of the cutest yet most important books ever. it has got two adorable romances, one of them is f/f, and the other has the best-friends-to-lovers trope. not only that, but it’s sex positive, body positive, mental health positive, and relationship positive. it’s empowering, and it’s amazing.

main diversity aspects: main character dealing with autism spectrum disorder anxiety, bisexual chinese australian main character, and love interest of color

to all the boys i’ve loved before (trilogy) by jenny han

also one of the cutest trilogies ever (even though i still haven’t read the last one). it’s quick, and so so so cute. almost too cute. + there’s a movie coming soon! which is why you should get into TATBILB if you haven’t yet.

main diversity aspect: korean-american main character

it all comes down to this by karen english

30971723this middle-grade novel is so underrated and i really don’t know why. it deals with racism and other social issues in the twentiest century and i got all kinds of feels while reading it. it’s a really important novel.

main diversity aspect: black main character

gena/finn by kat moskowitz and kat helgeson

19254725while not my favorite book, GENA/FINN does have its charm, from different formatting to stories about fandoms and meeting people through the internet. so if you are interested by any of these, you should definitely give this book a try.

main diversity aspect: queer main character dealing with her mental health

now tell me:

  • have you read any of these books? what were your thoughts?
  • do you have any other recommendation?
  • what was your favorite read of the summer?

18 thoughts on “17 diverse contemporaries to read even though summer is gone

  1. Maha, this is such a fantastic list!! Definitely some great reads here, and also some good reminders that I need to read some of these books! (I still haven’t read THUG… I’m ashamed.) I completely agree that TATBILB is the cutest trilogy and it’s up there as one of my favourite series ever. A book I’ve got out at the library at the moment is The Upside of Unrequited! So I’m really excited to read that once I’ve finished Meet Cute.
    Great list, Maha! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  2. i love contemporaries so i definitely will add some to my list.

    i think everyone and their moms know i have read and loved everything Becky Albertalli wrote so!!! yes!!! love her books.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. this list is absolutely fantastic! i’ve read both geekerella and noteworthy, sadly, i didn’t enjoy the first. they are still amazing in terms of diversity though! and lara jean series! i can’t wait to read the final book… along with the rest of the books on your list! amazing post maha!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I love so many of these books! Simon Vs., Geekerella, and Jenny Han’s series are fantastic and super cute! I’m currently reading Queens of Geek and my nerdy heart couldn’t be happier! SO MUCH REP TOO!
    I have still to read The Hate U Give and The Upside of Unrequited *ashamed* I can’t believe I haven’t yet. How it Feels to Fly was also on my list because I love ballet, dance, and I was interested in the body representation and the character’s journey, but reading about that is a bit harder for me.
    I’d like to check out all of the other books, though! AWESOME list!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Love, love, love this list! ❤ I absolutely loved The Hate U Give, Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda and Written in the Stars so I am so glad to see them on here. 🙂 Thanks for sharing and, as always, fabulous choices! xx

    Liked by 1 person

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