I love summer.
Well, I actually love summer more when I'm not twenty-five pounds heavier than usual (baby will be here by the end of the season), and when it's not pushing 95 degrees and 100% humidity (hello, South!). I've actually spent most of this summer sitting on a chair with my feet propped up, praying the power bills don't break the bank.
Still, summer is my favorite season. It was my favorite growing up, too (back when I could tolerate the heat and humidity and spent most of my days playing in the woods, hanging in my tree house, or swimming in my backyard pool).
But I think more than the freedom I had from school and life in general, I liked summer because of the potential.
During my summers, I was away from school for at least two to three months, I saw best friends sporadically and acquaintances not at all, there were camp weeks and family vacations. . . .
It seemed like anything could happen during that span of down time, which always felt like forever. I could meet new people. I could experience new things. I could somehow transform from that "ugly duckling" into a beautiful swan that no one would recognize come fall.
A tan would help. Better hair would help. A growth spurt, maybe. And then things would be different. But every year it was the same, and every year I looked forward to the new school year thinking: this could be the one. It never was, but that's okay.
I think that's why, even today, I enjoy YA "summer" books. Because authors know this, too: when summer comes, anything can happen. And for those characters living through summer, things do happen. And everything changes.
A few of my favorite summer reads:
The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen (anything by her, really, but this is the best of her "summer" reads, in my opinion).
The Summer Series by Jenny Han (I adore this series for all the reasons mentioned above: it's summer, there's a beach, and the main character is just starting to get noticed).
Stay by Deb Caletti (nothing better than trying to escape life for the summer and having it punch you right in the face).
And there are cute boys, which always helps.
So spill it: what are your favorite summer-related reads (YA or otherwise)?
Katie Klein is a diehard romantic with a penchant for protagonists who kick butt. Her YA contemporary romance, Cross My Heart, is an Amazon Teen Top 100 Bestseller and was a 2011 Goodreads Choice Awards Nominee for Best YA Fiction.
She loves the potential summer holds and cute boys—the recipe for a perfect YA novel.
You can find her on the web at www.katiekleinbooks.com, http://katiekleinwrites.blogspot.com/, or https://twitter.com/#!/katiekleinbooks.