YEM’s TOP 5 YA Stand Alone Books of 2022

There have been so many incredible books to come out this year. Like us, we are sure everyone wishes they had the time to read them all. Since we don’t, let’s narrow down a few worthy of young adult readers’ attention. Even if you’ve read these books before, it doesn’t hurt to reread them!

1. The Temperature of You and Me by Brian Zepka

A usually dreary shift working at the Dairy Queen suddenly becomes more excitable for protagonist Dylan Highmark, aged 16, when he falls mad over heels in love with another young man named Jordan, who happens to enter his place of employment. Jordan seems like a dream come true to Dylan, who has long waited to find love. Be sure to read this book or reread if you love typical romance stories as we do!

2. Who We Were in the Dark by Jessica Taylor

In this highly rated book by author Jessica Taylor, Who We Were relays a tale about passengers stranded in Donner Lake years ago who did unthinkable things to survive. Donner Lake is also where the lonely protagonist Nora Sharpe’s world changes suddenly when Grace enters it one fateful night. We wish this book had a sequel, but we are grateful to have this to revisit whenever we want a good mystery!

3. Heartbreak Boys by Simon James Green

Finally on our list is the novel Heartbreak Boys. As their respective ex-partners, Dylan, and Tariq, begin a new relationship, Jack and Nate embark on a journey of self-discovery. When their ex-partners start sharing pictures of their new relationship on social media, Nate and Jack make their “highlights reel” to demonstrate that they are enjoying themselves too. Author Simon James Green has a knack for making ordinary plotlines incredibly interesting. We love the dynamics between the characters of Heartbreak Boys, and our only regret is that the book wasn’t longer!

4. Nothing More to Tell by Karen M. McManus

The NYT’s bestselling author and one of YEM’s favorite storytellers is Karen M McManus. You may be most familiar with her young adult mystery series turned hit tv show One of Us is Lying. In her latest thriller titled Nothing More to Tell, McManus tells the story of Brynn, who left Saint Ambrose School four years ago after learning of her favorite teacher’s murder. While the case remains unsolved, Brynn is confident she can guess who amongst three people is the perpetrator. Few authors are as good as McManus at putting a unique twist on a classic tale as she is! Give this a read if you haven’t already.

5. Homefield Advantage by Dahlia Adler

Heroine Amber McCloud’s goal is to be the lead cheerleader of her squad. But maintaining enthusiasm and vigor in the wake of the death of the school’s star quarterback proves a harder task for her. We chose Homefield Advantage because of its unique and vivid storytelling. YEM is also a massive fan of author Dahlia Adler who is well known for her suspenseful and character driven plots.