Book List

17 Books to Bring to the Beach

May 22, 2019
Jess Harold
Riveted Editorial Board

Summer days are best spent at the beach. Maybe you’re lounging at an all-inclusive resort sipping on fresh coconut water; or you could just be down at the local pool. But no matter how glamorous the location, the one thing you need for a great day at the beach is an amazing book.

There’s so much good YA to choose from—swoon-worthy romance, page-turning thrillers, fast-paced sci-fi. Here are some of our favorite reads for your all-day tanning session.

17 Books to Bring to the Beach

1. To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them…all at once? Lara Jean has written five love letters in her life, but never sent them. So, when all five of them receive her no-longer-secret letters, her life turns completely upside down. If you haven’t already, don’t forget to watch the Netflix movie, which is out now!


2. American Panda by Gloria Chao

17-year-old Mei is a freshman at MIT, following the next step in her parents’ plan for her to become a doctor and marry a Taiwanese Ivy Leaguer.  What Mei can’t tell them is that she hates germs—and that she has a massive crush on her Japanese classmate. 


3. The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw

The small town of Sparrow, Oregon is plagued by three sisters who were drowned for witchcraft centuries prior.  Each summer, they return, stealing the bodies of three girls in order to lure boys into the water and to their own deaths. This year, an outsider arrives at Sparrow, not believing the danger.  This is a suspenseful, witchy tale that nods to Salem while exploring romance, secrets, and of course, revenge.


4. Starry Eyes by Jenn Bennett

Best-friends-turned-best-enemies Zorie and Lennon are abandoned in the wilderness. And as they travel through the California backcountry, secrets and hidden feeling surface. They can’t entirely blame the forest air and starlit nights on this rekindling connection!


5. Save the Date by Morgan Matson

Charlie Grant’s older sister is getting married this weekend at their family home, and Charlie can’t wait. The house will be filled with jokes and games and laughs again. Making decisions about things like what college to attend and reuniting with longstanding crush Jesse Foster—all that can wait. She wants to focus on making the weekend perfect. The only problem? The weekend is shaping up to be an absolute disaster.


6. Love From A to Z by S.K. Ali

What happens when a mad, sad fiery girl meets a beautiful cinnamon roll boy with secrets? An unforgettable romance following two Muslim teens who meet during a spring break trip.


7. Stay Sweet by Siobhan Vivian

Stay Sweet by Siobhan Vivian

In this adorable and—dare I say it—sweet YA, we follow seventeen-year-old Amelia who is determined to save Meade Creamery, the local ice cream stand, now that their late founder’s great-nephew has taken over management. You’ll be craving an ice cold treat before you finish the prologue!


8. Tradition by Brendan Kiely

Tradition is a rallying cry for all the rebels out there trying to figure out how to stand up for people who are being mistreated and make positive change in our society. Set at a boarding school with long-standing traditions that are harmful and need changing, Tradition follows the path of two students–one female, one male–who experience and witness injustice and are determined to bring an end to it.


9. What I Leave Behind by Alison McGhee

After his dad commits suicide, Will tries to overcome his own misery by secretly helping the people around him in this exquisitely crafted story made up of one hundred chapters of one hundred words each, by award-winning and bestselling author Alison McGhee.


10. Your Destination is on the Left by Lauren Spieller

Dessa’s life has been one long road trip—her family travels across the country in an RV caravan—and she’s ready to leave everything behind for a more sedentary life. But when she finally settles into an internship in Santa Fe, her family suffers an unexpected blow, and she’s faced with the decision of losing everything she’s worked for.


11. Saints & Misfits by S.K. Ali

Janna thinks of people in three different categories in her world, and she places herself at Jeremy firmly in the misfits. Janna thinks she and Jeremy are from two different worlds, but the old adage “opposites attract” can be very true.


12. Learning to Breathe by Janice Lynn Mather

After being shipped off to the Bahamas, Indira has been fighting how to be seen as herself by a family that only sees her mother’s mistakes. So, when an unwanted pregnancy forces her to seek refuge elsewhere, Indy discovers home is much bigger than just four walls and a roof—it’s about the people she chooses to share it with.


13. Shimmer and Burn by Mary Taranta

In order to save her sister from a live of slavery, Faris must smuggle stolen magic into the neighboring kingdom to appease a power-hungry princess. With kingdoms at stake, Faris and her traveling companions must navigate magical and political machinations, where lives can be destroyed—or saved—with only a touch. Look no further for a romantic and exciting fantasy adventure for your beach day.


14. Love & Luck by Jenna Evans Welch

Addie and her brother Ian used to be inseparable, but Addie is sure that even a trip to Ireland won’t mend the rift. When travel plans change and Addie finds herself cramped in a car with Ian and his admittedly cute local friend, she realizes this might be her chance to reconnect with her brother.


15. Want by Cindy Pon

In a technologically advanced Taipei, the rich are protected by the pollution their corporation’s cause. The poor, like Jason Zhou, are not so lucky. After losing his mother to an environmental virus, he is determined to change things, no matter the cost. This is the perfect sci-fi to binge read while evening out your tan!


16. Burn for Burn Trilogy by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian

If you’ve read Dangerous Girls, Bad Girls with Perfect Faces, or Three Truths and a Lie, and are hungry for more tumultuous female friendships, direct your attention to the Burn for Burn trilogy by YA powerhouses (and IRL BFFs) Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian! Lillia, Kat, and Mary may not be best friends but are brought together by their need to get back at those that have done them wrong. On the postcard-perfect island of Jar Island, revenge is a dish best enjoyed together.


17. From Twinkle, with Love by Sandhya Menon


Twinkle Mehra is on top of the world: she is directing a movie for the upcoming summer film festival, and her longtime crush, Neil, is definitely sending her love letters. The only problem? She’s kinda, sorta falling for Neil’s twin and fellow film geek Sahil. If you loved When Dimple Met Rishi or Alex, Approximately, you’ll be glued to your lounge chair finishing this adorkable story.

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