2020 YA Holiday Gift Guide

Ready for the holiday season? We are too! We created a list of books to inspire your gift giving…or to buy for yourself. Need more inspiration? Check out our 2019 gift guide.

Do you usually give books as presents? Let us know in the comments!

1. For Mystery Fans: Dare You to Lie by Amber Lynn Natusch

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Dare You to Lie follows Kylene after he dad was wrongfully convicted of murder. She’s determined to clear his name. But first, she has to back to her old school and deal with a group of guys who ruined her life and reputation. Kylene is a total badass and she uncovers some dark secrets in her small Ohio town. This book is perfect for fans of Karen McManus and Holly Jackson.

2. For Romance Lovers: London Prep by Jillian Dodd

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We absolutely love this juicy story about two British boys vying for the heart of American exchange student, Mallory. The romance is top notch and you’ll end up loving both of the boys for the quick wit, charm, and broody ways. If they love British boys, they will gobble the London Prep series up! 

3. For History Buffs: Romanov by Nadine Brandes 

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Romanov is a historical re-telling of the Romanov family’s downfall during the Bolshevik Revolution. Who doesn’t enjoy a historical re-telling? This one even includes a magical touch. Travel back in time with famed princess, Anastasia Romanova, as she is tasked with smuggling a family heirloom out of Russia…and saving her family before it’s too late. 

4. For Political Activists: Most Likely by Sarah Watson

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We read Most Likely for a recent book club and really enjoyed the strong female characters and friendships in this book. The story follows four friends, Ava, CJ, Jordan and Martha, during their senior year of high school— one of which will become the first female president of the United States! The book also centers around the girls attempting to save their community park, so there is political activism. 

5. For Indie Book Supporters: The Jabberwocky Princess by Cece Louise

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Louise write The Forest Tales set in a different world. The Jabberwocky Princess follows Kainda and Opal as the two play very different roles in slaying a beast who is killing citizens. Both Kainda and Opal have to fight for the future they want, but maybe they’ll fall in love with their dream guys along the way.

6. For Hunger Games Enthusiasts: A Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins

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Welcome to Panem, where the 10th Hunger Games is about to begin. Before he became president, Coriolanus Snow was a high school student. On the outside, it seemed that he and his family had plenty of money. But, that was just a cover. His family was going broke and Snow had to do something to assure his bright future. A Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes is the perfect read for those interested in why Snow became such a horrible person.

7. For Sports Fans: Stealing Home by Becky Wallace

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Another of our book club picks! If they love baseball, then this is the book for them. Throw in a touch of romance, and this is the perfect light-hearted read. Wallace also has another book out, Far From Normal, about an intern at a sports marketing firm tasked with handling an obnoxious (read: hot) soccer player. If soccer is more their speed, definitely check Wallace’s other book. 

8. For Winter Lovers: On Thin Ice by Julie Cross

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This is easily the best one in the Juniper Falls series based on chemistry alone. We expect many YA fans to fall for Jake Hammond’s charm. Brooke at first thinks he’s another popular jerk, but the more time the two spends, she learns there is a lot more to him than just hockey. Another aspect we loved was the female hockey player. It’s such a typical trope for bad boy hockey player to fall for the beautiful good girl. Not Brooke! She tough, tenacious and ready to show Juniper Falls that its time to support these badass ladies. 

9. For Travel Addicts: Love & Olives by Jenna Evans Welch

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The summer before her senior year, Liv gets a postcard from her father inviting her to Santorini for a few weeks to help with his projects. Begrudgingly, a few days later she’s on a plane to help her dad shoot a documentary on Atlantis for National Geographic. We loved the mystery aspect of the book. As history lovers, it would be so cool being able to do a project for National Geographic and explore Greece to understand one of the world’s most discussed myths. Love & Olives is perfect for people who want to explore Greece.

10. For College YA Readers: A Little Something Different by Sandy Hall

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This cute and quirky story about finding love in college is told through every perspective except the main characters. Seriously, their teacher, the Starbucks employee, and even their friends are invested in Gabe and Lea getting together. Everyone notices their blooming chemistry, but will they?  This is a cute and quick read for romantic comedy fans.

11. For Musicians: Sing Like No One’s Listening by Vanessa Jones

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We recently read Sing Like No One’s Listening for a blog tour and loved it. The book gave us major Hilary Duff in Raise Your Voice vibes. The story follows Nettie, a vocal student at London’s prestigious performing arts college. If they love musical theater and romance, they’ll enjoy this book! 

12. For Social Media Stars: Influence by Sara Shepard and Lilia Buckingham 

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Influence doesn’t release until January, but that doesn’t mean you can’t give a preorder as a gift this holiday season. From the author of Pretty Little Liars, Shepard brings us to California to follow four influencers with big secrets. Meet Delilah, Jasmine, Fiona and Scarlett. This dark mystery takes place in the competitive world of rising social media influencers. 

13. For Theatre Fans: Almost Maine by John Cariani 

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In northern Maine you’ll find a place that’s not quite a town because to be a town you have to get organized. It’s just almost. A place so far north it’s almost Canada. Based on the award-winning play of the same name, Cariani transformed his best known work into a book. One night in the middle winter, the residents of Almost, Maine fall in and out of love under the Northern Lights.

14. For the Friend with the Big Family: 10 Blind Dates by Ashley Elston

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We read 10 Blind Dates last year and really enjoyed this hilarious romcom about a girl who is set up on 10 blind dates by her family over the holidays. This romcom is laugh-out-loud funny and full of family antics, since the MC comes from a loud and (endearingly) obnoxious Italian family. Not to mention that there is a super sweet romance! The perfect YA read for the holidays. 

15. For the Binge Watcher: Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares by David Levithan and Rachel Cohn

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If your friend or family member loves Christmas in NYC, then they need to read this sweet YA romance about two people who leave notes for each other across the city. The best part? This book was recently turned into a Netflix TV show, so they can watch after and compare!

Published by I'm All Booked Up YA

We write recommendations and reviews for YA books.

27 thoughts on “2020 YA Holiday Gift Guide

  1. I have been looking for some new books to buy friends (and maybe a few for myself). Most likely sounds like an interesting book as does Influence. 10 blind dates sounds funny and would be the perfect Christmas read for me. Thank you for sharing! 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I wish I had more friends/family that read because this is a great list of book recommendations to gift. I already have some of these on my list, as well, so it’s good to know y’all enjoyed them

    Like

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