Skip to main content

Planes, Trains, and... Books


It's almost holiday time, and that means traveling for a lot of people. Since I'm leaving this weekend to go visit family for Thanksgiving, I thought I'd make a list of books for you guys that'll be perfect reads while you're flying, waiting in the airport, or hiding from relatives. If you're taking a car trip, check out the audiobook versions. Or, I guess, if you're fortunate enough to be able to read in the car, do that. I can't even look at Instagram without getting carsick.
So, without further ado, here's my list of perfect travel books that are lighthearted, page turning, or perfect escapes. I'll link to my reviews of each of the books so that you can read my full thoughts on each of the books.
by Lance Rubin
I picked a lot of funny books for this list because they're my favorites to read while traveling. Even when books cross into difficult subject matter, the tone can keep a book perfectly poised as a light read. I love the balance Rubin strikes here as aspiring comedian, Winnie, is always good to point out the humor in a moment even as she deals with intense family situations. 
by Katie Henry
This book is one of my favorites I've read recently because I could not put it down. The story centers around Ellis who is a doomsday prepper and deals with a lot of anxiety issues. She's convinced the world could end on a moment's notice. When she meets Hannah, who claims to know the exact time this disaster will happen, Ellis is given a goal to save everyone before the disaster sets in. The cool thing about this book is that you know that the world isn't going to end, but there's so many twists and turns at the end and the tension of living in Ellis's mind makes you wonder. 
It's an amazing exploration of anxiety, family, friendship. and fist love.
Interview with Katie: Here
by Sonia Hartl
This book is also perfect for a thought provoking laugh. Set at a Christian summer camp, the book follows CeCe and Paul who really shouldn't be there. CeCe is chasing her ex-boyfriend who has become a born again Christian after breaking up with her after they had sex. Paul is chasing his best friend who he knows will die at camp without him. With Paul's knowledge of Jesus camp from his since disappeared pastor father, CeCe infiltrates the camp, but, as time goes on, her mission shifts from winning back her loser boyfriend to helping the girls she befriends learn about sex ed and correct some of their harmful misconceptions. 
Hilarious missteps and sweet romance make this book a complete page turner.
Interview with Sonia: Here
by Erin Hahn
No list of anything is complete without a swooney, country music romance. Erin delivers on not just a musical love story but a deep exploration of two ordinary people thrown into extraordinary situations. The two perfectly executed points of view will keep you stuck in their world.
Interview with Erin: Here
by Leah Thomas
Family, small towns, murder. All of these elements are at play in this book. The plot revolves around the tweens born a generation after a murder that disrupted both their family's lives forever. Even though Kayln's dad is in prison for the murder of Gus's dad, there's an irresistible draw pulling them together. Despite their families' being enemies, they become good friends and work to get to the bottom of what really happened that night before either of them were even born. It's a unique take on the murder mystery, but it's also an amazing friendship story and has great representation. 
by Lori Goldstein
If you're looking for a book about badass girls in tech, look no further than Screen Queens. Set at a STEM camp at Stanford, three girls are thrown together in a team for the coding competition. Even though they don't start as best friends, the girls bond quickly when they uncover some sexist and dangerous activity running through the camp. Together, they work to both win the completion and win justice. 
by Jen Wilde
This book has all the markers of a perfect travel read. It's fast paced, it's adorable, and it's set on a Hollywood movie set. Wilde invites you to forget about the winter snow and imagine a summer spent interning in a writer's room while falling for the shows lead actress. Also, if you're looking for YA with olde characters, this is a great choice because it's set the summer after high school which is cool. but, content wise, it's still perfect for a younger reader. 

As Many Nows As I Can Get
by Shana Youngdahl 
You might want to pack some tissues for this one. Even though I don't love consuming emotional media in public, I had to include this one because the way it's written out of sequence and in short scenes makes it particularly all consuming. As Many Nows is an intense experience, and you won't want to put the book down. Another perk is that it's one of the longer books on the list which is great you can only take one with you.
Interview with Shana: Here
The Best Lies
by Sarah Lyu
If you want to pack a rollercoaster in your bag, this book is the way to go. It's a twisty murder mystery/thriller type story with a dual timeline and an unreliable narrator. It jumps into toxic friendships and what happens when games go too far. You'll wash into a world so disorienting and immediate that you won't want to close the book until you've discovered every detail. 
Interview with Sarah: Here

Ship It
by Britta Lundin
I'm a sucker for comic con books, and this one is my favorite in the genre. There's a cute love story where the fanfic writing Claire falls for another fan art making fan, but it also peals back a layer on TV and Hollywood as Claire's dream to hang out with her favorite cast on TV turns into an illusion breaking reality about the people behind her favorite characters. Also, for those interested in fandom, it has a really interesting conversation about shipping and where the line between loving something, wanting something for a show, and how it impacts the actors and writers on the show gets blurred. 
This book is a nonstop laugh. It's hilarious and heart wrenching, and for a lot of teens, set in the decade their parents were teens which is both kinda cool and kinda weird. It's another out of sequence story and perfect for those who love sarcasm with a side of heartbreak.
Interview with Don: Here

Red, White, and Royal Blue
by Casey McQuiston
This is actually an adult romance so better suited for those on the older end of YA, but who isn't going to love a romance between the prince of England and the first son. It pretty much sells itself right there, but the book is also wonderful for its dialogues on media scrutiny, siblings, and trying to find your own path as someone in your early 20s. 

As a bonus entry, I also want to recommend Elton John's new autobiography Me on audiobook. It's what I picked as my entertainment for my last trip, and it was a great choice. Elton narrates it himself and takes the book and the stories to another level. He's great at performing it, and it feels like some friend telling you crazy, old stories. I haven't heard many Elton John songs, and I didn't know anything about him before listening, but I found it to be the perfect travel companion. 
And you might be wondering what I'm taking on my trip this year. While my Kindle is loaded with a couple different books, first up will be Erin Hahn's More Than Maybe which is arriving at my house tomorrow. I'm beyond excited to dive into Erin's second book because I loved the little excerpt I got to read when I did Erin's cover reveal a little while back. If you missed that, you can find it here

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Bi Book Love

I'm so excited about this list and the upcoming list on Aro/Ace/Demi rep because I feel like these areas of representation have grown so much recently. I also feel like it's harder to find these identities on specific lists or super easily, so I wanted to share some of my favorites for those of you who are seeking them out. I've made book rainbows for Pride Month and made general lists (which you can find here), but I wanted to do something different this year. I didn't want to repeat the same list, and I also realized I don't have a complete rainbow of LGBTQIA spines anymore after getting rid of most of my books. This list is by no means exhaustive, but I picked a couple of my favorites that I wanted to spotlight. To learn more about each book, click the title to read my full review.

Verona Comics  by Jennifer Dugan This is one of my new all time favorite books (which I'm extra pleased about because my expectations were sky high from waiting well over a year). …

YA Book Review: I Wish You All The Best by Mason Deaver

I Wish You All The Best by Mason Deaver 
Overview: Ben is nonbinary. The book opens with them working up the courage to finally come out to their parents. Even though his parents are religious and conservative, Ben feels like it might be okay. Mostly, they feel like they can't keep living with a secret that big. They want their parents to know them fully. Instead of love and support, they get thrown out of the house. Ben calls their older sister who they haven't seen in ten years, but she shows up right away. As Ben transitions to living with their sister and her husband, they have to navigate a brand new school, a new family situation, and a new therapist all at once. While it's a lot to process, Ben comes out stronger, healthier, and happier on the other side. Overall: 5 

Characters: 5 Ben and I have honestly nothing in common yet I found them so incredibly relatable on a minute detail level. We have a ton of similar thoughts and reactions and just life philosophies, which…

Ace/Aro/Demi Book Love

Last week, I shared all my favorite recent releases with bi main characters. A lot of you commented and shared your favorites as well, and it was so fun to learn about some new books! As Pride Month comes to an end, I wanted to make one my post to celebrate. Today I'm talking about my favorite books with Aro, Ace, or Demi representation. Again, I've found it tricky sometimes to find books with this specific representation, so I wanted to share in case some of you are looking for new books! This is a quick, little post, so if you want to add more books to it, just leave a comment!
Tash Hearts Tolstoy By Kathryn Ormsbee I've been a huge fan of this book since I first read it a couple years ago. It was the first book I ever read with ace rep. Tash is such an intelligent, lovable character, and the friendship story is also strong too. Even as she achieves career success with her scripted YouTube series, she's still navigating what her identity means to her, and being open ab…

Into YA with Lindsay Sproul

Hi, everyone! I know I've been gone for a minute, but I'm excited to come back with my interview with Lindsay Sproul. Lindsay and I have been working on this interview for a while, ever since I first read We Were Promised Spotlights. I'm so excited to have a more in-depth discussion about the book and get to look at it through this new prospective. It was a super eye opening read for me and probably most other teens my age who weren't alive when the story takes place. If you haven't had the chance to read Lindsay's book, you can check out my review here to get up to speed.


1. The most notable part of the book right from the start is that it doesn’t take place in 2020. It’s set in 1999-2000 in a small beach town. Why did you decide to set it in the near past? How do you approach writing a book for teens who mostly hadn’t been born when the story takes place? 

Aside from the fact that I was a teen in the late 90’s/early 2000’s, I think it’s important for teens to b…

Books I'm Looking Forward To: July

Can you believe it's almost July? I'm shocked that June is coming to a close. Just like last month, June is packed with an amazing set of books that I can't wait to start reading. We're also starting to see some of the spring books that got pushed because of COVID come out, and I'm so glad that these authors are getting that chance, even though conditions are still less than ideal. I've been waiting for most of these books since I seriously started blogging again back in March, and I'm so excited to finally start reading them. I wanted to share a quick list of some of the books I'm most excited to read over the course of the month. I have ARCs for all of these, so expect reviews coming soon. I just started I Killed Zoe Spanos, and I'm already sucked into its atmospheric, mysterious world. 
As always, preorders, especially now, are so important for supporting authors. Many of them are offering fun preorder incentives if you send in your receipts. I&#…

My Eyes Are Up Here- YA Book Review

My Eyes Are Up Here by Laura Zimmermann
Overview: Greer's life has been governed by body insecurity. She hides in XXL sweatshirts to try to take her chest out of the conversation. It doesn't stop the cruel jokes, the pain, the logistical nightmare with sports, and the impossibility of finding a dress that feels made for her. Over the course of her sophomore year, she starts to test the self-imposed limitations as she gets closer to the new guy, tries out for the volleyball team, and takes her voice back from society and her body image constraints. Overall: 4

Characters: 4 Greer is such a fun main character to follow. She is sarcastic and has a worldview that really matches my own, so we clicked quickly. She's a realist with a streak of idealism. A lot of identity comes from her braininess as she leads all her classes, and she uses it as a way to compensate for trying to pretend her physicality doesn't exist. This emerges for a wide variety of societal pressures that is u…

I'll Be the One Review

I'll Be The One by Lyla Lee
Overview: Skye loves K-Pop, singing, and dancing. She's studied for countless hours and has gotten really, really good. When the first LA based K-Pop competition starts holding auditions, Skye knows it's her time to shine. While her dad and her friends are supportive, her mom hates the idea. She doesn't believe fat girls can dance. This only pushes Skye more as she's determined to prove to her mom and to all the fat-phobic haters that she can do whatever she wants and be proud of it. Even though the competition isn't an easy road, it's full of fun new friends, self discovery, glitzy performances, and a possible love interest. Overall: 5

Characters: 5 Skye is a character that's easy to like. She radiates light and determination without ever crossing into annoying territory. She has a clear view of what she wants, and she's not afraid to work for it. Despite years and years of hurtful, self esteem wrecking comments from her m…

YA Book Review Parachutes by Kelly Yang

Parachutes by Kelly Yang 
TW: Sexual Assault
Overview: Claire and Dani start out feeling like they live on two different planets. Claire has lived a glamorous life in China, cared for by live-in help and constantly picked up after. Every argument with her dad ends in a new purse or pair of shoes, and she's never had to seriously want for anything. Dani and her mom work for a housecleaning service to stay afloat. She attends American Prep on scholarship and works hard to fund her debate travel. Eventually, her mom signs up to host an international student to make a little extra money. While Claire and Dani originally clash, their experiences over the course of the school year make them realize they have more in common than they originally thought. Overall: 5 

Characters: 5 Every single character in this books was so well drawn and thoroughly paid attention to. Through subtle nuances, even the most minor characters were stunningly clear and realistic. Every character had their fair mix…

Into YA with Jennifer Dugan

I'm so excited to introduce my first repeat author for Into YA! Jennifer Dugan is back on the blog to chat about Verona Comics, one of my favorite books of the year (and probably all time). If you've followed my blog for any amount of time, you probably know about Verona Comics by now, but if you want a refresher or some context for our conversation, check out my review of it here.
Also, if you're curious about my first interview with Jennifer about Hot Dog Girl, you can find it here.  And if you want to get a copy of Verona Comics or learn more, here's a link to her author website with all the links.

1.I absolutely love that Verona Comics is such a clear nod to Romeo and Juliet. Did you set out to write a modern retelling? You explore and contextualize a lot of the more toxic elements of the original story. Were there any major changes that you had to make to Shakespeare’s outline to make it fit YA today?   
I actually didn’t go into Verona Comic’s with the idea of mak…

You Should See Me In A Crown YA Book Review

You Should See Me in a Crown by Leah Johnson
Overview: Liz never thought she'd run for prom queen. It's a deeply entrenched tradition on the suburb of Campbell, Indiana. Though it's mostly a show of popularity, there is a scholarship for the king and queen. When Liz doesn't get as much financial aid as she needs to go to her dream school, she signs herself up to compete. After many weeks of community service and competitions, prom season manages to change the course of Liz's senior year. Overall: 5

Character: 5 I loved Liz! She was such a great main character to follow because she has the right amount of optimism and reality. She has a lot happening in her life that she has to juggle and keep up with, and I could definitely identify with her feelings of never having done enough. Over the course of the prom season, she forces herself to come out of her shell a little more and get comfortable with throwing herself in the middle of the mix. It also causes an identity st…