by Ashley from Book Labyrinth
1. Stay by Deb Caletti: A powerful and emotional account of relationship abuse, and one girl's efforts to move on. It's very beautifully written, and I loved both the message and the characters.
2. Where She Went by Gayle Forman: "Absolutely breathtaking" is a good way to describe this book and Gayle's writing. Just incredibly amazing -- one you do not want to miss out on.
3. If I Tell by Janet Gurtler: I had a hard time picking between Janet's two 2011 releases, I liked them both so much. If you're a fan of Sarah Dessen and Elizabeth Scott you should definitely check out Janet's books.
4. Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally: This one probably made me smile and swoon more than any other book this year, excluding re-readings of Anna and the French Kiss. Take Anna and mix it with Friday Night Lights and you've got Catching Jordan.
5. The Piper’s Son by Melina Marchetta: Melina wrote my favourite book of all time (Jellicoe Road), and she doesn't disappoint in this companion book to Saving Francesca. I dare you not to fall in love with Tom Mackee.
6. Virtuosity by Jessica Martinez: An incredibly interesting look at the classical music scene. Carmen is a character you can really empathize with as she deals with her crazy pressuring stage mom and as she attempts to navigate a forbidden relationship.
7. Flat-Out Love by Jessica Park: Don't let anyone tell you there aren't any good self-published novels out there, because this book blows so many traditionally published books right out of the water. College aged protagonist, quirky family, and amazing slow blooming love = amazing book.
8. The Liar Society by Lisa & Laura Roecker: Basically Veronica Mars in YA book form. So good!! I loved it, and I can't wait to read the 2nd book.
9. Past Perfect by Leila Sales: Hilarious and full of awesome, especially if you're a history geek like me. Loved the living history museum setting, the awesome characters, and the sweet yet swoony starcrossed romance.
10. Small Town Sinners by Melissa Walker: Incredibly compelling and touching. Melissa Walker has written a very nuanced and non-judgemental examination of religion, belief, and truth. I loved the discussions in the book and the search for answers that it portrays.
So those are my Top 10. And because there are so many great books out there, I also have to give honourable mention to Rival by Sarah Bennett Wealer, The Beginning of After by Jennifer Castle, Sean Griswold’s Head by Lindsey Leavitt, and Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins.
What contemporary YA books published in 2011 were your favourites?? I'd love to hear about them.
Thanks so much for having me, Brenna!