On the Fourth Day of Christmas: Four Contemporaries

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Four Contemporaries

Trish at Between My Lines is hosting the Twelve Days of Christmas with different bloggers offering their recommendations each day from December 25 through January 5. There’s also a giveaway, so scroll down for that.

Today I’m recommending four contemporaries.

The Ivy by Lauren Kunze (The Ivy #1)
The Ivy by Lauren Kunze

Congratulations! You have been admitted to the most prestigious university in the world. Now what are you going to do?

Callie Andrews may not have money or connections or the right clothes, and she may have way too many complications in her love life, what with

the guy she loves to hate …

the guy she’d love to forget …

the guy she’d love to love …

and Matt
the guy she really should love …

all vying for her attention.

But she has three fantastic roommates (best friends or her worst nightmare?) and a wholesome California-girl reputation (oops) and brains and beauty and big, big dreams.

Will it be enough to help her survive freshman year at Harvard?

I read The Ivy before I started blogging and I didn’t write reviews until I started blogging either. I just rated books I read on Goodreads (sometimes). I gave The Ivy 3 stars, but the rest of the books in the series all got 4 stars. While I don’t remember why I gave the stars I did, I do remember devouring the first one and immediately reading the second. (Unfortunately, I had to wait for the third and fourth books to be published.) It was that addictive. It’s just such a fun book (and series) that gives those of us who didn’t go to Harvard a peek into the social life on that campus.

Recommended to: fans of Gossip Girl and and Private

The Tragedy Paper by Elizabeth LaBan
The Tragedy Paper by Elizabeth LaBan

Tim Macbeth, a seventeen-year-old albino and a recent transfer to the prestigious Irving School, where the motto is “Enter here to be and find a friend.” A friend is the last thing Tim expects or wants—he just hopes to get through his senior year unnoticed. Yet, despite his efforts to blend into the background, he finds himself falling for the quintessential “It” girl, Vanessa Sheller, girlfriend of Irving’s most popular boy. To Tim’s surprise, Vanessa is into him, too, but she can kiss her social status goodbye if anyone ever finds out. Tim and Vanessa begin a clandestine romance, but looming over them is the Tragedy Paper, Irving’s version of a senior year thesis, assigned by the school’s least forgiving teacher.

Jumping between viewpoints of the love-struck Tim and Duncan, a current senior about to uncover the truth of Tim and Vanessa, The Tragedy Paper is a compelling tale of forbidden love and the lengths people will go to keep their love.

I tend to go more for fluffy, fun books with a lot of romance than tragic books, but The Tragedy Paper blew me away. It’s probably the one book that led me into blogging, even though I read it five months before I started blogging. I have been stalking LaBan’s Goodreads account ever since, hoping for another book from her. No luck yet, but I did just spot this on her Twitter:

Recommended to: fans of boarding school books and mysteries

The Summer I Wasn’t Me by Jessica Verdi
The Summer I Wasn't Me by Jessica Verdi

Lexi has a secret.

She never meant for her mom to find out. And now she’s afraid that what’s left of her family is going to fall apart for good.

Lexi knows she can fix everything. She can change. She can learn to like boys. New Horizons summer camp has promised to transform her life, and there’s nothing she wants more than to start over.

But sometimes love has its own path…

I read The Summer I Wasn’t Me just this past April, but unfortunately I never got around to reviewing it. Lexi goes to camp to learn how not to be gay. She really wants to be straight because it’s what she and her mother (and everyone she knows) believe is right. It’s so sad to watch her struggle against her true nature, and it’s shocking what the people running the camp will do to try to make gay teens turn straight. The Summer I Wasn’t Me is such a powerful book.

Recommended to: fans of F/F romance and people who are new to LGBT fiction

Waiting on the Sidelines by Ginger Scott
Waiting on the Sidelines by Ginger Scott

Nolan Lennox had things figured out. Named after a baseball legend, she enjoyed being the Tomboy, her closet filled with her brother’s hand-me-downs, cut-off jeans and soccer shorts. But when her first trip to high school results in a broken heart from the first boy to ever make her heart flutter and cruel words from an older girl she once thought a family friend, Nolan starts to question the very person she thought she was and wonders if her humble upbringing can compete with the afforded luxuries of her privileged peers.

Throughout the next four years, Nolan struggles to maintain herself throughout her path of discovery, learning just how cruel teenagers can be through the pressures of underage drinking, sexuality and class. And despite how life seems to continue to work against her, she still manages to listen to her heart, falling deeper and deeper for the guy the entire town adores, even if he only sees her as a friend. Can Nolan strike a compromise between her own integrity and the boy she loves? And can she make him notice her before it’s too late?

Read my review of Waiting on the Sidelines. As soon as I volunteered for the four contemporaries spot, I knew I would be choosing a Ginger Scott book as one of my recommendations. I just didn’t know which one. I picked Waiting on the Sidelines because I’m primarily a YA blog and it’s Ginger Scott’s only YA; the rest of her books, including the sequel, are NA. It’s also her first book (and the first of hers that I read).

Recommended to: fans of high school football and sweet but realistic romances

Your Turn
Do you have any contemporaries to recommend to me and others?

See the rest of the recommendations:

Jan 5th : Twelve YA’s with lots of Kissing – Chelsea @ Starbucks & Books Obsession
Jan 4th : Eleven covers for Adoring – Rachel @ Confessions of a Book Geek
Jan 3rd : Ten books with Dancing – Trish @ Between My Lines
Jan 2nd : Nine Plots A-twisting – Miranda @ Tempest Books
Jan 1st: Eight Maids Kick-Assing – Jessica @ Lovin’ Los Libros
Dec 31st: Seven Dystopias Awaiting – Rita @ View From My Home
Dec 30th: Six Sizzling New Adults – Sheri @ Tangled Up In Books
Dec 29th: Five Co-z-ies – Katherine @ I Wish I Lived in a Library
Dec 28th: Four Contemporaries – Jenna @ Rather Be Reading YA (That’s me! You’re here!)
Dec 27th: Three Time Travels – Terri @ Second Run Reviews
Dec 26th: Two Chick Lits – Lola @ Lola’s Reviews
Dec 25th: And a Thriller where the family flee – Trish @ Between My Lines

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  1. So happy to see Waiting on the Sidelines there as it’s one of my fav YA contemps, I just loved the main characters and how awkward and realistic it was. I haven’t heard of The Ivy but now I need it! It sounds like a me book. Your other choices sound tempting too.
    Thanks for taking part Jenna and for the great recs 🙂
    Trish @ Between My Lines recently posted…The Sunday Post : Get your Bookish News #57My Profile

    • Waiting on the Sidelines is one of my favorites too. I wanted to pick some books that don’t have a lot of hype in the blogging community, or at least not current hype. The Ivy and The Tragedy Paper were published before I was blogging so I don’t know if they were talked about a lot around their release dates or not.
      Jenna recently posted…12 Days of Christmas Swap RevealMy Profile

  2. Eleanor & Park was my favorite YA Contemporary read this year. I devoured it and cried at the end.

    Terri M., the Director
    Second Run Reviews
    Terri M. recently posted…Scenic Sundays 17: Faith and Miracle on 34th StreetMy Profile

  3. I don’t read much YA so these are all new to me but The Tragedy Paper sounds amazing and I’m really curious about the other 3. Thanks for sharing!
    Katherine @ I Wish I Lived in a Library recently posted…This Week in Reading – December 28My Profile

  4. The Tragedy Paper really drew me in from your review. I don’t read YA very much but this one sounds so intriguing to me. You did a great job with your reviews so that even a non-YA reader such as myself read every word and contemplated which book I would choose if I had them all right in front of me. Thanks for sharing all this!
    R_Hunt @ View From My Home recently posted…This n That 2015 ThoughtsMy Profile

  5. You did a great job with your reviews so that even a somewhat non-YA reader such as myself read every word posted here with interest and contemplated which book I would choose from above if all were right in front of me (The Tragedy Paper won out). Thanks for sharing all this with us!
    R_Hunt @ View From My Home recently posted…This n That 2015 ThoughtsMy Profile

  6. I really liked The Tragedy Paper too. I’m one of those people that like the darker, more serious novels though. 🙂
    ShootingStarsMag recently posted…New Look + Giveaway ReminderMy Profile


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