Loving books this Valentine’s Day!
“Once I fell in love with books I fell in love completely.” Stephen King
We adore books all year round, but while love is in the air for Valentine’s Day, we thought we’d share a few of our favourite library-shelf worthy romances with you.
Heartstopper: Volume Three – Alice Oseman
The latest chart-topping volume of Alice Oseman’s wonderful LGBTQ+ graphic novel series based on characters from her print novels came out this month, and it’s wonderful! If you haven’t read the series yet, get your hands on them and give them a go. Quickly becoming cult classics in libraries across the world, they only ever seem to be on waiting lists and never on the shelf!
Book blurb: Boy meets boy. Boys become friends. Boys fall in love. An LGBTQ+ graphic novel about life, love, and everything that happens in between: this is the third volume of HEARTSTOPPER, for fans of The Art of Being Normal, Holly Bourne and Love, Simon.
Charlie didn’t think Nick could ever like him back, but now they’re officially boyfriends. Nick’s even found the courage to come out to his mum.
But coming out isn’t just something that happens once – there’s Nick’s older brother, and a school trip to Paris, not to mention all the other friends and family – and life can be hard, even with someone who loves you by your side. As their feelings get more serious, Charlie and Nick will need each other more than ever before.
You can see more from Alice on her Twitter: @AliceOseman
Romeo and Juliet – Shakespeare
We can’t let Valentine’s Day pass us by without showing some love to this pair of classic star-crossed lovers. Lose yourself in the tragedy of their doomed romance, and maybe afterwards treat yourself to a viewing of the wonderful Baz Luhrmann film version.
These violent delights have violent ends
And in their triumph die, like fire and powder
Which, as they kiss, consume.
Book blurb: When Romeo and Juliet meet during a chance encounter, they have no idea what lies ahead – for these lovers belong to feuding families, and their love will never be accepted by those around them.
To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before Series – Jenny Han
With these teen romances having a bit of a resurgence since the film versions of ‘To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before’ and ‘P.S. I Still Love You’ were released on Netflix, how could we miss them off the list?! The last adaptation in the series, ‘To All The Boys: Always and Forever’, Lara Jean joined US Netflix on February 12th this year, so we’re expecting to see more requests pretty soon!
Book blurb: Lara Jean keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. One for every boy she’s ever loved. When she writes, she can pour out her heart and soul and say all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only.
Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control.
You can see more from Jenny on her Twitter: @JennyHan
Dork Diaries 12: Tales from a Not-So-Secret Crush Catastrophe – Rachel Renee Russell
For some diary fiction for a younger audience, how about the swoon-worthy ‘Tales from a Not-So-Secret Crush Catastrophe’ – book 12 in the wildly popular ‘Dork Diaries’ series?
Book blurb: Nikki Maxwell and her BFFs are all counting down to the end of the school year. Nikki thinks she has her summer all figured out, with lots of fun plans to hang out with her friends and her crush, Brandon. It’s going to be perfect! Squeee!
But then a new boy turns up at school and shows an interest in Nikki and things become confusing super-quickly! The last thing Nikki wants to do is hurt Brandon…What do you do when you accidentally crush your crush!?
See more from Rachel on her Twitter: @DorkDiaries
My So-Called Bollywood Life – Nisha Sharma
If you like your romance written in the stars, what about one of NPR’s favourite reads? Funny, romantic and lively, My So-Called Bollywood Life should be on everyone’s TBR pile.
Book blurb: Winnie Mehta was never really convinced that Raj was her soul mate, but their love was written in the stars. Literally, a pandit predicted Winnie would find the love of her life before her eighteenth birthday, and Raj meets all the qualifications. Which is why Winnie is shocked when she returns from her summer at film camp to find her boyfriend of three years hooking up with Jenny Dickens. As a self-proclaimed Bollywood expert, Winnie knows this is not how her perfect ending is scripted.
Then there’s Dev, a fellow film geek and one of the few people Winnie can count on. Dev is smart and charming, and he challenges Winnie to look beyond her horoscope and find someone she’d pick for herself. But does falling for Dev mean giving up on her prophecy and her chance to live happily ever after? To find her perfect ending, Winnie will need a little bit of help from fate, family, and of course, a Bollywood movie star.
See more from Nisha on her Twitter: @Nishawrites
Night of the Party – Tracey Mathias
If you prefer your romance a bit more dystopian, go for Tracey Mathias’ gritty and believable post-Brexit YA debut, Night of the Party. Timely and gripping, we couldn’t put this one down.
Book blurb: After withdrawing from the EU, Britain is governed by a far-right nationalist party. Its flagship policy is the British Born edict, which allows only those born in Britain to live here. Everyone else is an “illegal”, subject to immediate arrest and deportation. But an election is coming soon, and all the polls point to a big loss for the ruling party. 18-year-old Londoner Ash is wrestling with grief after the loss of his sister Sophie, who died in a tragic drug-related accident at a party. He meets Zara on a stalled tube train and immediately falls for her. But Zara has secrets: not only is she an “illegal”, but she’s the only person who knows the truth about Sophie’s death. Associating with Zara could jeopardize Ash’s future, and if Zara comes forward with what she knows about the night Sophie died, she’ll have no future in Britain at all. The election could save them. Or will it only bring disaster?
See more from Tracey on her Twitter: @traceymathias
Stargirl – Jerry Spinelli
Since the Jerry Spinelli classic ‘Stargirl’ will soon see it’s adaptation streaming on Disney+ (March 13th, 2020), it’s the perfect time to dip back into it or read it for the first time if you’ve never had the pleasure. A lovely affirmation of being yourself, and how being different isn’t a bad thing.
Book blurb: She’s as magical as the desert sky. As strange as her pet rat. As mysterious as her own name.
From the day she arrives at quiet Mica High in a burst of color and sound, the hallways hum with the murmur of “Stargirl, Stargirl.” She captures Leo Borlock’s heart with just one smile. She sparks a school-spirit revolution with just one cheer. The students of Mica High are enchanted.
Then they turn on her. Stargirl is suddenly shunned for everything that makes her different. And Leo, panicked and desperate with love, urges her to become the very thing that can destroy her: normal.
See more from Jerry on his Twitter: @JerrySpinelli1
Since Valentine’s Day is also International Book Giving Day, why not surprise your Valentine (Gal-entine or Pal-entine!) with a book you know they’ll love.
Book blurbs: https://www.amazon.co.uk/books/