Best Books List, Contemporary, Romance
Best Contemporary Gay Romances For Teens

Best Contemporary Gay Romances For Teens

 

The best love stories are unexpected, which may be why there’s so many great gay YA contemporary stories. The protagonists aren’t looking for romance, they’re just trying to get through high school when a potential Mr. Right appears. Between coming out, falling for the last person they’d expect and high school drama, it’s easy to become engrossed in these captivating books for young adults. These gay teen romances will hook you and have you rooting for a happy ending.

Autoboygraphy by Christina Lauren

Three years ago, Tanner Scott’s family relocated from California to Utah, a move that nudged the bisexual teen temporarily back into the closet. Now, with one semester of high school to go, and no obstacles between him and out-of-state college freedom, Tanner plans to coast through his remaining classes and clear out of Utah.

But when his best friend Autumn dares him to take Provo High’s prestigious Seminar—where honor roll students diligently toil to draft a book in a semester—Tanner can’t resist going against his better judgment and having a go, if only to prove to Autumn how silly the whole thing is. Writing a book in four months sounds simple. Four months is an eternity.

It turns out, Tanner is only partly right: four months is a long time. After all, it takes only one second for him to notice Sebastian Brother, the Mormon prodigy who sold his own Seminar novel the year before and who now mentors the class. And it takes less than a month for Tanner to fall completely in love with him.

What do the readers say?

“I’ve been finished with this book for hours and I’m still dazed and in awe of it. It’s one of those books that had me smiling like a goofball while making me a bit uncomfortable. It’s a book with a ton of heart, love, pain, and wanting. It’s one of the most beautiful and poignant books I’ve read this year. It has easily made it into my top five books of 2017.”JessicaAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

 

Riding with Brighton by Haven Francis

Yesterday, Jay was convinced his life was damaged beyond repair.
Yesterday, Brighton was sure his life was perfect.
Then today happened.

Realizing he’s wasted his life in the meaningless pursuit of popularity and athleticism, Jay Hall knows he has nothing in common with alternative, free-thinking artist Brighton Bello-Adler. But he’s determined to change that.

Brighton’s managed to fill his life with an eclectic mix of people and interests that keep him satisfied. As the only gay guy in his small town, the one thing that’s missing is a man, but Jay’s not gay, so Brighton’s not sure what he’ll gain by letting him into his life. Still, he’s willing to find out.

Heading off on an impromptu road trip, the boys chart a course connecting their worlds, and along the way discover pieces of themselves they didn’t know were missing. As the sun rises on a new day, Jay and Brighton know their lives have changed. Now they just have to figure out how to live in them.

What do the readers say?

Sometimes when you see a book rated and all the ratings are 5 stars you start to wonder. Well, I can tell you, this book is worth it. Two boys with journeys all their own come together in a fascinating way in one day and Haven wrote it all so well. This book I can recommend. – Tony, Amazon User. [Review from Amazon]

Fjord Blue by Nina Rossing

After a year of partying, getting into fights, and finally crashing his father’s vintage Bonneville in a car chase, seventeen-year-old Benjamin has pushed his parents to their limit. It’s not like he can tell them why he’s so angry at life, or that he’ll do anything to distract himself from the lust he feels toward his best friend’s sexy cousin, Dino. He can’t even protest when he’s sent away from Miami to spend the summer working on his grandparents’ farm in the desolate fjords of Western Norway.

The farm is isolated and old-fashioned, and so are Ben’s religious grandparents. It’s cold and wet, and Ben is miserable and restless. Relief comes in the form of Even, the eighteen-year-old blond Viking farmhand who offers Ben friendship and a new outlook on his situation. But Even is hiding issues of his own.

Ben’s grandparents want him to inherit the farm, but the only thing keeping Ben there is his desire to know Even better. As the feelings between the two young men grow, things kept hidden are slowly revealed—for good and ill—and they must turn to unlikely places for encouragement.

What do readers say?

Hurray for the anti-hero. I haven’t read a book in a long time where I was meant to dislike the protagonist from the beginning–I must say it was refreshing. The novel also takes place in my mother’s ancestral land of Norway. It was a pleasure to read about Benjamin’s transformation through his feelings for Even and his conflicts working on the farm.” – Melanie McFarlane Goodreads User. [Review from Goodreads]

 

Under the Stars by Geoff Laughton

Ethan Tanner is an out and proud, fastidious, and fashionable sixteen-year-old vegetarian who likes theater and musicals. This year, it’s his sister’s turn to pick the vacation destination, so he ends up on a dude ranch he knows he is going to hate. What with the dirt, animals, and germs, he can’t possibly be happy.

Jason McCoy is the closeted sixteen-year-old son of the ranch owners and is trying to find his place in a world that doesn’t seem to fit him. He takes an interest in Ethan, shows him around, and gets him to ride a horse. When he invites Ethan camping, Ethan thinks Jason must be joking. But Ethan takes a risk, and the two boys bond under the stars.

After that, Ethan and Jason are inseparable. Their friendship grows into something deeper as they begin to figure out what they want from life. But Ethan’s home is in Chicago, and the distance might be more than the two teenagers—and their blossoming relationship—can withstand.

What do the readers say?

“Laughton isn’t setting out to change the literary world with this book. He, instead, beautifully details a fully realized relationship between two very different, very likeable characters with the same youthful yearning we are made to experience all over again. I was transported to a place of innocence and discovery because he was as cautious about the circumstances which abound as I had been about mine at the time I was “of age.”B D, an Amazon User. [Review from Amazon]

Loving Lakyn by Charlotte Reagan

Lakyn James is sixteen years old and hating every second of it. He was supposed to be done, he’d tapped out. End of story, unsubscribe here. Suicide “attempt”, they said. His intentions had no “attempt” in them.

Re-entering normal life after ‘trying’ to take his own is weird. Especially when the world keeps going like it never happened. He still has to eat breakfast, go to school, and somehow convince a cute boy that he’s too damaged to date.

Scott White comes with his own problems, namely a habit of drinking too much and being indecisive about rather he wants in the closet, or out of it. Lakyn can’t stand him; he also can’t help smiling when Scott’s around.

Unfortunately – or fortunately – for Lakyn, life has decided to give him a second chance. He’s not happy about it, but maybe, with a lot of hard work and a good therapist, he can learn to be. And maybe he can hold Scott’s hand at the same time.

No promises though.

What do the readers say?

“I can’t praise Loving Lakyn enough. It is fantastic. I read this book 3 times on Wattpad before the actual release, and the final version came together wonderfully. Lakyn is an incredibly compelling character, and you feel for him from beginning to end.Tara Maginnis, an Amazon User.” [Review from Amazon

Collide by J.R. Lenk

Being bisexual is cool now—unless you’re a boy. Or so it seems to invisible fifteen-year-old Hazard James. But when he falls in with bad apple Jesse Wesley, Hazard is suddenly shoved into the spotlight. Jesse and his friends introduce him to the underworld of teenage life: house parties, hangovers, the advantages of empty homes, and reputation by association. So what if his old friends don’t get it? So what if some people love to hate him? Screw gossip and high school’s secret rules. There’s just something about walking into a room and having all eyes on him when just last year nobody noticed him at all.

For a while Hazard basks in the attention, and before he realizes the depth of the waters he’s wading, he and Jesse strike up a “friends with benefits” routine. It could be something more, but what self-respecting teenage boy would admit it? Not Jesse—and so not Hazard, either. Not until it’s too late. Hazard and Jesse have collided, and Hazard’s life will never be the same.

What do the readers say?

“A full FIVE YEARS AFTER READING and I still remember & think about this very touching YA novel from time to time. It’s so full of genuine feels and the book is full of song titles & band names, so I strongly suggest YouTubing the songs as they’re mentioned, as they take the reading experience to a whole other level.” Todd, a Goodreads User. [Review from Goodreads]

Play Me, I’m Yours by Madison Parker

Fairy Tate. Twinklefingers. Lucy Lu. Will the taunting ever end? Lucas Tate suffers ridicule because of his appearance and sensitive nature. When he’s not teased, he’s ignored, and now he doesn’t know which is worse. His one comfort in life is his music; he feels unloved by everyone. What he wants more than anything is to find a friend.

Much to his dismay, both his mom and a schoolmate are determined to find him a boyfriend, despite the fact Lucas hasn’t come out to them. His mom chooses a football player who redefines the term “heartthrob,” while Trish pushes him toward the only openly gay boy at Providence High. But Lucas is harboring a crush on another boy, one who writes such romantic poetry to his girlfriend that hearing it melts Lucas into a puddle of goo. All three prospects seem so far out of his league. Lucas is sure he doesn’t stand a chance with any of them—until sharing his gift for music brings him the courage to let people into his heart.

What do the readers say?

“Not all authors can capture the sensitive time of high school, coming of age, finding a boyfriend, coming into one’s own and coming out to family and classmates as well as Ms. Parker has in this terrific little read. This one has stuck with me and re-reading it was a treat.” – Susan Reaves, an Amazon User. [Review from Amazon]

The Biggest Scoop by Gillian St. Kevern

Everything is going wrong for Milo Markopoulos. The future of the school newsletter is in jeopardy, he doesn’t have a single friend among his junior classmates, and his film script has been rejected again. Worse, he has only one day to find a story that will satisfy the school newspaper editor, Candice. Enter transfer student, Taylor. Good looking, responsible, and possessed of a mysterious something that has him turning heads on his first day of school, Taylor is the story Milo is looking for—too bad Taylor has plans for a quiet high school experience.

Despite their many differences of opinion, Milo finds himself developing a close journalistic relationship with the future class president. But Taylor’s success might put an end to their burgeoning friendship. What will happen when Taylor is no longer Milo’s story? How far will Milo go to save the newspaper?

What do the readers say?

“Milo is a likable protagonist who progresses the story through his resplendent social missteps, over corrections, and general misunderstandings. The situations and internal dialogue are not exactly laugh-out-loud, but will keep a quirky, pleased smile on your face for pages and pages! This author keeps all her promises for high school drama, young romance, teen angst, and a happy ending.”Adam, an Amazon User. [Review from Amazon]

Been Here All Along by Sandy Hall

Gideon always has a plan. It includes running for class president, becoming head of the yearbook committee, and having his choice of colleges. It does NOT include falling head over heels for his best friend, Kyle. It’s a distraction, it’s pointless—Kyle is already dating the head cheerleader, Ruby—and Gideon doesn’t know what to do.

Kyle finally feels like he has a handle on life. He has a wonderful girlfriend, a best friend willing to debate the finer points of Lord of the Rings, and social acceptance as captain of the basketball team. So when both Ruby and Gideon start acting really weird, just as his spot on the team is threatened, Kyle can’t quite figure out what he did wrong.

Sandy Hall, the author of A Little Something Different, is back with her signature wit in this quirky and heartfelt LGBT YA novel.

What do the readers say?

“I enjoy the way Hall writes because she has fluffy Contemporary with a hint of dark/important topics. Been Here All Along includes a parent losing a job, surviving in the real world/life after college and a learning disability. I enjoyed these topics being implemented into the story because they are real life events and need to be seen in YA more! Adding a learning disability really hit me because it was relatable to my life and rare to see in YA books.”Alyssa, an Amazon User. [Review from Amazon]

One Little Word by Finn Manning

What happens when the most popular guy in school must depend on a social pariah to save his skin? Luke Chambers is about to find out. When one stupid word heard by the wrong ears sends the captain of the baseball team’s life into chaos, his plan to get out of trouble involves the one kid who seems to hate him.

Ryan just wants to have some fun at the jock’s expense. He won’t be stupid enough to fall for the gorgeous blonde with green eyes, dimples and impressive arm muscles from pitching. Okay, he might like to look, but it’s difficult being the only gay kid in a small town.

Relationships are never easy, especially when both people want different things. Ryan wants a boyfriend who wants him back. Luke wants things to start making sense again. But what if they both wanted the same thing? What if they want each other? Could one terrible word lead to something great?

What do the readers say?

“There is a sweet genuineness of it all that reminds me of the absurd drama of my high school years and the head shaking ‘truth is stranger than fiction’, ‘nobody would believe it if they hadn’t been there’ that accompanies my former classmates get togethers. What is particularly excellent is how tight the writing by the author fleshes out the cast of supporting characters and their own revelations.”Ken NYC, an Amazon user. [Review from Amazon]

Sweaters & Cigarettes by Mika Fox

Theo can’t stop looking at Max. With those black clothes and piercings, and that sarcastic charm that’s enough to intimidate pretty much anyone, he’s not exactly what you would call ordinary. Especially not when Theo is as ordinary as it gets, for a high schooler, along with all the insecurity and awkwardness that comes with it.

Basically, Max is everything Theo is not, but no matter how hard Theo tries, he can’t get him off his mind. He’s honestly crushing on him so hard, that it’s not even funny.

Theo has never spoken to Max, has even tried to hate him, but when their paths actually cross, their first conversation takes a surprising turn. And before long, they both find themselves falling harder and faster than they ever could have anticipated.

‘Sweaters & Cigarettes’ is a story about first love, first times, and all the sweet thrills that go along with it.

What do the readers say?

This is the kind of book you read with a smile on your face. Theo and Max were amazing together from the first page to the last. The book was sweet, sexy and Theo’ s first time couldn’t ‘ have been wrote more perfectly. I’m usually a fairly fast reader but you will want to take your time with this one. – Kindle Customer, an Amazon User. [Review from Amazon]

What are YOUR favorite Gay YA books? Let us know in the comments!

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