8 Christmassy YA reads to tuck into when the holidays come
We're counting down the days to the holidays.
Christmas is so close now and all we want to do is don our Christmas pyjamas, cosy up in front of the fire, and get stuck into a feel-good festive book.
We may not get that much snow in Ireland but we can certainly pretend that we do by surrounding ourselves with snowy book covers and titles that contain the word "snow". Desperate times call for desperate measures, okay?
We love a good young adult story at Christmas - no other books do feel-good romance with no real consequences the way YA does and that's just what we need this winter season.
The holidays are fast approaching, which means it's time to stock up on those Christmas reads. So, just in case you need a little help picking some out, here are eight of our absolute favourite YA Christmas books.
1. Let It Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson & Lauren Myracle
Before you ask - yes, this is the movie that just came out on Netflix.
Sparkling white snowdrifts, beautiful presents wrapped in ribbons, and multicoloured lights glittering in the night through the falling snow. A Christmas Eve snowstorm transforms one small town into a romantic haven, the kind you see only in movies. Well, kinda.
Join three groups of teens as they take on the snowstorm and discover friendship and some festive romance in the freezing cold. Thanks to three of today’s bestselling teen authors—John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle—the magic of the holidays shines on these hilarious and charming interconnected tales of love, romance, and breathtaking kisses.
2. Dash and Lily's Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn & David Levithan
“I’ve left some clues for you.
If you want them, turn the page.
If you don’t, put the book back on the shelf, please.”
Lily has left a red notebook full of challenges on a favourite bookstore shelf, waiting for just the right guy to come along and accept its dares. But is Dash that right guy? Or are Dash and Lily only destined to trade dares, dreams, and desires in the notebook they pass back and forth at locations across New York? Could their in-person selves possibly connect as well as their notebook versions? Or will they be a comic mismatch of disastrous proportions?
Rachel Cohn and David Levithan have written a love story that will have readers perusing bookstore shelves, looking and longing for a love (and a red notebook) of their own.
3. The Afterlife of Holly Chase by Cynthia Hand
On Christmas Eve five years ago, Holly was visited by three ghosts who showed her how selfish and spoiled she'd become. They tried to convince her to mend her ways.
And then she died.
Now she's stuck working for the top-secret company Project Scrooge, as the latest Ghost of Christmas Past.
Every year, they save another miserly grouch. Every year, Holly stays frozen at seventeen while her family and friends go on living without her. So far, Holly's afterlife has been miserable.
But this year, everything is about to change...
4. My True Love Gave to Me by various authors
If you love short stories, pick up this Christmas anthology immediately. My True Love Gave To Me: Twelve Holiday Stories is filled with short stories written by twelve bestselling young-adult writers, edited by the international bestselling author Stephanie Perkins.
Whether you enjoy celebrating Christmas or Hanukkah, Winter Solstice or New Year's, there's something here for everyone. So curl up by the fire and get cosy. You have twelve reasons this season to stay indoors and fall in love.
5. What Light by Jay Asher
Sierra's family runs a Christmas tree farm in Oregon—it's a bucolic setting for a girl to grow up in, except that every year, they pack up and move to California to set up their Christmas tree lot for the season. So Sierra lives two lives: her life in Oregon and her life at Christmas. And leaving one always means missing the other.
Until this particular Christmas, when Sierra meets Caleb, and one life eclipses the other.
By reputation, Caleb is not your perfect guy: years ago, he made an enormous mistake and has been paying for it ever since. But Sierra sees beyond Caleb's past and becomes determined to help him find forgiveness and, maybe, redemption. As disapproval, misconceptions, and suspicions swirl around them, Caleb and Sierra discover the one thing that transcends all else: true love.
What Light is a love story that's moving and life-affirming and completely unforgettable.
6. Decked With Holly by Marni Bates
Taking a Christmas cruise with her two cousins from hell isn't Holly's idea of a good time. And when seasickness forces her into an open suite, she's pepper-sprayed by a gorgeous guy called Nick.
But when Holly makes her exit, she's greeted by a horde of screaming teenage fans. Because Nick happens to be Dominic Wyatt, drummer for one of the hottest bands in America.
Suddenly rumours are swirling and Holly's face is plastered all over the Internet. The band can't risk a scandal destroying their family-friendly image, so Dominic convinces Holly to be his fake girlfriend - just for two weeks.
How bad could it be to be "fauxmantically" involved with a cute rock star? She's about to find out...
7. Snowed In by Rachel Hawthorne
Seventeen-year-old Ashleigh is about to experience a lot of things for the first time.
1) Snow. She and her mom are moving from sunny Texas to an icy island in the middle of Lake Michigan, which is completely snowbound. As in, no cars, just sleighs.
2) Small-town life. The icy island? Yep, it’s tiny. Like, 30 people in the whole high school tiny.
And scariest of all:
3) Boys. Of course they had boys in Texas. But none of them were as irresistible—or as hard to figure out—as Josh Wynter. And before the snow melts, Ashleigh might also be falling in love …
8. Kiss Me in New York by Catherine Rider
It's Christmas Eve at JFK in NYC.
Charlotte is a British student, waiting for a flight home after the worst semester of her life. Anthony is a native New Yorker, surprising his girlfriend at the airport after three months apart. Charlotte has just been dumped, and Anthony is about to be dumped, right in the middle of the holiday crowd.
Charlotte's flight is cancelled when a blizzard blows in, and Anthony can't bear to go home. So, they set out into the city together, clutching a book Charlotte picks up in the airport gift shop: Ten Easy Steps for Getting Over Your Ex. For this one night, they'll focus on healing their broken hearts... together.
Step-by-step, the two struggle to put the past behind them. But the snow is so enchanting, and the holiday lights are so beguiling, that soon their shared misery gives way to something else. Soon, they're not only over their exes - they're falling for each other.
Then a subway ride splits them up by mistake. Will they reunite before Charlotte's flight leaves New York forever?