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Top Ten Guest Post {Just Contemporary Week Four!}

This month, in case you didn't know, is Just Contemporary Month! I love love love contemporary YA, therefore I'm participating in some of the guest posty activities planned. This week's guest post is written by Tara from Hobbitsies all about her favorite authors in contemporary literature! It's great my lovelies, so read on. :)
Alright, picking my top ten contemporary authors was hard. REALLY HARD. Clearly you guys know how many awesome contemporary authors are out there, so narrowing it down is not something I ever want to attempt again, hah!

So, here it goes – my top ten favourite contemporary authors, in no order!

1) SARAH OCKLER – Her writing is AMAZING. She’s only written two books, Twenty Boy Summer and Fixing Delilah, and I am such a freaking huge fan girl. If someone ever asks me “which author do you want to be when you grow up?” my answer will be Sarah Ockler. Her writing style is fantastic and gorgeous and her characters are so real and I just cry and cry and cry. I love her!

2) STEPHANIE PERKINS – Alright, isn’t this a given? Who doesn’t love Anna and the French Kiss and Lola and the Boy Next Door? Not only is Stephanie Perkins herself amazing and awesome, but her books and her characters ESPECIALLY her male characters ah!

3) MEG CABOT – Another given. But really. She’s Meg freaking Cabot. All of her books are amazing, ESPECIALLY the contemporary ones (although I do admit I love the Mediator series). I have read The Princess Diaries series like a million times.

4) LOUISE RENNISON – You want to talk about a funny woman? Her books are laugh out loud funny. Lots of hilarious escapades and unbelievably mortifying moments and even though none of the stuff has ever happened to me, I can totally picture it all in my head. Love her!

5) MAUREEN JOHNSON  - Her books are lovely and hilarious and I’ve literally read them all and I love them, but honestly, Maureen Johnson isn’t just on this list because of her books. She, as a person, is awesome. She just has so much presence, it’s awe-inspiring. I met her twice at BEA and I just love her.

6) LEILA SALES – I loved Mostly Good Girls  - I thought it was one of the most realistic books I’ve ever read. Funny and embarrassing and moving. And then I read Past Perfect and that just legitimately made my day. Such an awesome book, such an awesome contemporary writer.

7) KODY KEPLINGER – I know a lot of people knock Kody Keplinger because her books focus on sex, but honestly? I love that about her books. It’s so real. Some high schoolers have sex and her books are very honest about that.

8) SARA BENNETT WEALER – She’s only published one book so far, Rival, but I absolutely loved it. It was a refreshing contemporary that focused more on the importance of friendship and goals than boys. I can’t wait to read more from her.

9) ALLY CARTER – SPIES. Okay. Her books are about SPIES AND ART THIEVES. I freaking love espionage and thievery and badass teenage girls who are doing espionage and thievery. I always look forward to the next Ally Carter book.

10) SARAH DESSEN – How on earth did I forget Sarah freaking Dessen? Her books are AMAZING and real and really leave an impact on me every single time.

Thanks for the awesome post, Tara! :)

"Powerful Stuff"-Sean Hayes

This month, in case you didn't know, is Just Contemporary Month! I love love love contemporary YA, therefore I'm participating in some of the guest posty activities planned. This week's guest post is written by Katelyn from Katelyn's Blog all about the tough stuff in contemporary literature! It's great my lovelies, so read on. :)

About Katelyn:
My name is Katelyn and I’m the crazy blogger behind Katelyn’s Blog (catchy title, huh?). When I’m not reading, my time is mostly taken up by my family (3 brother + 2 sisters + 3 dogs = LOTS of madness), college (hope to become a high school math/English teacher), and working (I’ve got to pay for my book/shoe/food addictions somehow).The only two things that keep sane during my crazy days are books and music. I love to read anything young adult but my heart beats a little stronger for contemporary fiction. I am a total fan-girl to Sarah Dessen, Melina Marchetta, Jennifer Echols, Simone Elkeles, We The Kings, Taylor Swift, and Augustana!
Sex. Drugs. Abuse. Suicide. Divorce. Death. Molestation. Break-ups. Lies. Cheaters. Loss. Grieving. Absent parents. Homelessness. Confidence issues. Self-worth. Depression. Anger problems. Eating disorders. Addiction. Drinking. Sexual orientation. Homophobia. Racism. Prejudices. Back-stabbing. Bullying. Teen pregnancy. Disorders. These are just a few of the issues that teens deal with on a daily basis but really the list can go on and on. Perhaps one of the greatest things about Y.A. contemporary fiction novels is that an author can cover one or two or as many issues as they want and nearly anybody can relate to it. Now what you guys may or may not find surprising, is that I have always stayed away from these “darker” contemporary novels up until recently and here is why.
I am not one of those close-minded people who think not reading about a certain issue means it is not there. I am well aware of all the problems going on in the world around us. The difference between me and people who think Y.A. contemp books are too dark for teens is that I think they are excellent for the right people. A girl who cuts herself reads a book about a girl going through a similar situation. However, the girl in the book finds the strength to say “No more” and moves on to other, more productive ways of expressing herself. A book that would be rather depressing and sad in many ways to some people, myself included, can be a life saver for another. I KNOW that books save lives, so why is it that I stayed away from them?
To answer that, would be extremely difficult. The only thing I can come up with is because by the end of the day, I thought I NEEDED a lighter book. I needed one that would make me smile, and laugh, and giggle like a school girl when a cute boy says something. I didn’t particularly want one that would make me sad and cry because after a long day of school, work, and home life, I wanted to be taken to a brighter, happier place.
I thought I was staying away from these “tough issue” books until I really began to look at what I was reading.*enter epiphany type music here* Sarah Dessen’s books are known for the romance but take a deeper look and there is so much more beneath the surface. Abuse, rape, death of a parent just to name a few! Jellicoe Road, a book I love is all about tough stuff. Love, Inc. a rather cute book is about parents divorcing and the effects that can have on kids. It’s Kind of a Funny Story follows a guy who commits himself to a psych ward because he wants to kill himself. Five Flavors of Dumb is about a girl who is deaf! These are all some of my FAVORITE books and you know what? They are full of tough issues. I DO read books that deal with stuff that real teens go through. It may be the lighter side of tough but they still cover it in a way that I can relate to.
Books about drug addiction, incest, molestation just aren’t for me. BUT I know there are people out there who NEED books like that so they can gain a sense of comfort knowing they are not alone out there. I give props to the authors who can create a world so dark and so very true so teens can have a voice. Books dealing with tough issues give the ones who have been forced to be quite about things going on in their lives a sense of hope. They can believe that there is a way out of an abusive relationship or drug addiction can be beat. These books may be dark compared to most Y.A books, but you want to know something kind of crazy? They are the most hopeful books I have ever laid eyes on.

There you go my lovelies! What do you think? Let me know in the comments!

Also, how's everyone doing? It's been a while, no?

"Powerful Stuff"-Sean Hayes,

Just Contemporary Month: Week One {Guest Post!}

This month, in case you didn't know, is Just Contemporary Month! I love love love contemporary YA, therefore I'm participating in some of the guest posty activities planned. This week's guest post is written by Jordyn from Ten Cent Notes all about why she loves contemporary! It's great my lovelies, so read on. :)

Explaining why I love contemporary YA so much is difficult; it's like trying to tell you why I love a certain song more than others: I just do. When you read a lot, you end up falling in love with certain stories, and this has happened to me over and over again. As a kid I was obsessed with the Baby-Sitter's Club; I read The Girls by Amy Goldman Koss during that horrible year when the girls in my class hated me. I discovered YA fiction in the form of The Truth About Forever, which was the sort of profoundly wonderful book that instantly drew me into the genre.

From there I've read everything from Dessen and Laurie Halse Anderson to newer contemporary authors like Courtney Summers, Sarah Ockler, and Gayle Forman. It's hard to pigeon-hole these stories. They're about growing up, about grief, about friendship and family and love. There are lighthearted, feel-good stories as well as stories about the tougher issues that are harder to handle. 

I love contemporary YA because of characters like Frankie Landau-Banks, Kurt Brodsky, Anna Oliphant, Scarlett and Spencer Martin, and Adam Wilde -- these are characters who are remarkably real while being funny, strong, and incredibly amazing. The incredible characters and true-to-life stories are what makes contemporary YA a genre I absolutely love.


Awesome, no? And as per usual here is my obligatory 'school is killing me softly, I'm sorry I don't post' spiel: I'm sorry. School hates me.

Didn't want to disappoint anyone. It's not a post unless I'm apologizing for not posting. :)

I hope all of you lovely people are having awesome lives and staying excellent and such!

"Flake"-Jack Johnson,