Representation matters, which is why we’ve put together a list of our favorite books featuring Jewish protagonists. Whether you want to see yourself represented, are looking to understand a different perspective, or just want a great read, these books will be perfect for you!
Books Featuring Jewish Protagonists
1. We Can’t Keep Meeting Like This by Rachel Lynn Solomon
Quinn Berkowitz and Tarek Mansour’s families have been in business together for years. At the end of last summer, Quinn confessed her crush on him in the form of a rambling email—and then he left for college without a response. When he shows up at the first wedding of the summer, looking cuter than ever after a year apart, they clash immediately.Quinn can’t deny her feelings for him are still there, especially after she learns the truth about his silence, opens up about her own fears, and begins learning the art of harp-making from an enigmatic teacher.
2. Our Year of Maybe by Rachel Lynn Solomon
Sophie Orenstein would do anything for Peter Rosenthal-Porter, who’s been on the kidney transplant list as long as she’s known him. When she learns she’s a match, donating a kidney is an easy, obvious choice. Sophie hopes Peter will love her back the way she’s always wanted, but Peter fears he’ll forever be indebted to her. Then, one heartbreaking night twists their relationship into something neither of them recognizes, leading them to question their past, their future, and whether their friendship is even worth fighting for.
3. Today Tonight Tomorrow by Rachel Lynn Solomon
Rowan Roth and Neil McNair have been bitter rivals for all of high school. When Neil is named valedictorian, Rowan has only one chance at victory: Howl, a senior class game that takes them all over Seattle. But after learning a group of seniors is out to get them, she and Neil reluctantly decide to team up until they’re the last players left—and then they’ll destroy each other. As Rowan spends more time with Neil, she realizes perhaps this boy she claims to despise might actually be the boy of her dreams.
4. You’ll Miss Me When I’m Gone by Rachel Lynn Solomon
Eighteen-year-old twins Adina and Tovah have little in common besides their ambitious nature. But one thing could wreck their carefully planned futures: a genetic test for Huntington’s, a rare degenerative disease that slowly steals control of the body and mind. When the results come in, one twin tests negative for Huntington’s, the other tests positive. These opposite outcomes push them farther apart as they wrestle with guilt, betrayal, and the unexpected thrill of first love. How can they repair their relationship, and is it even worth saving?
5. What I Like About You by Marisa Kanter
Halle Levitt is keeping a secret. When she’s online, she’s Kels, the enigmatically cool creator of One True Pastry, a YA book blog that pairs epic custom cupcakes with covers and reviews. Kels has everything Halle doesn’t: friends, a growing platform, tons of confidence, and Nash, her online crush. That is, until Halle finds herself face-to-face with real, human, Nash, but he has no idea she’s actually Kels. Things quickly get complicated when she starts to fall for Nash as Halle but he’s in love with Kels…
6. Recommended for You by Laura Silverman
Shoshanna Greenberg loves working at her favorite local bookstore. When her boss announces a holiday bonus to the person who sells the most books, Shoshanna is determined to win. The only person standing in her way? New hire, a recent nemesis, Jake Kaplan. He may be cute (really cute), and he may be an eligible Jewish single (hard to find south of Atlanta), but Shoshanna is ready to take him down. As the competition intensifies, Jake and Shoshanna grow closer and realize they might be more on the same page than either expects…
7. Paper Hearts by Meg Wiviott
Amid the brutality of Auschwitz during the Holocaust, a forbidden gift helps two teenage girls find hope, friendship, and the will to live in this novel in verse that’s based on a true story. This novel is based on the friendship of Fania and Zlatka, the story of the bond that helped them both to hope for the best in the face of the worst. Their heart is one of the few objects created in Auschwitz, and can be seen today in the Montreal Holocaust Memorial Centre.
8. The Last Words We Said by Leah Scheier
All the Bright Places meets If I Stay in this heart-wrenching, romantic novel about a tight-knit group of teen girls coping with a devastating loss and what happens when your best friend is also your first love…and your first heartbreak.
9. As if on Cue by Marisa Kanter
A pair of fierce foes are forced to work together to save the arts at their school in this swoony YA enemies-to-lovers romance that fans of Jenny Han and Morgan Matson are sure to adore. Both Natalie and Reid in this book are Jewish, and their faith is a huge part of their lives, often represented throughout the novel.