2023 Summer Reads


Gabriella Frey

Complete the summer with these books: The Hunger Games, It Starts With Us, The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, The Summer I Turned Pretty, Lessons in Chemistry, Heartstopper, and Dragon Hoops.

Gabriella Frey, Staff Reporter

As the 2023 school year comes to an end, students face the dreaded, “summer brain drain” that stems from the extended time away from school. As summer begins, screen time soars as students enjoy the luxury of free time. When school gets out, teens see reading and learning as a chore; however, most teenagers do not realize that reading, if given the chance, can become an entertaining and fun-filled activity that not only helps erase boredom but also increases their IQ.

While reading, many teens even find themselves relating to the characters in their stories and using reading as a coping mechanism or a distraction from reality. Romance, one of the many popular genres of books, continues to gain popularity among young audiences. Gaining popularity on social media platforms such as Tiktok and Instagram, the book Beach Reads by Emily Henry follows the story of two authors whose only similarities are writer’s block and neighboring beach houses. Along with Beach Reads the popular series by Jenny Han entitled, The Summer I Turned Pretty, follows the story of Isabel ‘Belly’ Conklin as she navigates through her teenage years, love triangles, friendships, family, and more. Colleen Hoover, a renowned New York Times bestselling author, recently published the book, It Starts With Us, a sequel to the book, It Ends With Us. These books follow the story of Lily Bloom as she navigates her way through life as a young adult, meeting new people and reconnecting with old friends and past romances.

Fictional stories contain a little bit of every genre, making them a very popular option among teens. The Hunger Games, the first book in the series written by Suzanne Collins, follows Katniss Everdeen who volunteers as tribute to go fight in the hunger games, a “game” where 24 male and female tributes are chosen, trained and sent into an arena where they fight to the death until only one victor remains. In 2020, Collins released a prequel to this series, The Ballad Of Songbirds and Snakes, a story that follows the past experiences of President Cornelius Snow as he mentors a tribute from the very first Hunger Games and eventually falls in love. Lessons In Chemistry, by Bonnie Garmus features the empowering story about a woman named Elizabeth Zott, a talented chemist, forced into becoming a television chef after getting divorced and becoming a single mother.

Some students prefer to see the situations happening in a book, making graphic novels a very popular option for students of all ages. Dragon Hoops, written and illustrated by Gene Leun Yang, depicts the story of a boy named Gene who does not understand sports, and, instead, enjoys comic books and other stories, eventually coming to realize that the sport he hates is just as interesting as the stories he grew up reading. Heartstopper, written and illustrated by Alice Oseman, revolves around Nick Nelson and Charlie Springs’ love story and follows them as they grow and become closer amid the struggles of becoming a couple and coming out.

There are unlimited amounts of new books to read including, Things We Hide From The Light by Lucy Score, I’m Glad My Mom Died by Jenette McCurdy, Girl In Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow, If He Had Been With Me by Laura Nowlin, and many more found in NY Times YA Best Sellers . As the school year comes closer to an end and with summer just around the corner, the opportunities to read reach an all-time high. Reading provides more than many people realize, especially with so many genres to choose from.