contemporary young adult titles
I write social-issue driven young adult and new adult novels with a strong romantic thread.
Read more about each title at the bottom of this page.
* PAGE UNDER CONSTRUCTION *
These are stories for anyone who loves literature surrounding the end of high school and college years. I often tackle big social issues or I take ideas from criminal cases that my husband has dealt with in his work and then (usually) give my characters a better ending than I see in real life.
LINKS COMING SOON!
the NEW LOVE series
centered around NEW LOVES – finishing high school, starting college, and falling in love while facing life-changing decisions, heartbreak, and discovering new chances
Jody is the girl who sits in the corner with her steady boyfriend and observes. But when her boyfriend unexpectedly dumps her just before they start a summer working at youth summer camps, her life begins to shift.
The local bar – where the camp counselors go to unwind – has hired Liam, a gorgeous man from Ireland. A gorgeous and tattooed man with a delicious accent. Even her boring name sounds beautiful coming through his perfect lips. When her harmless flirting actually leads to romance, Jody’s shocked she ended up with the man everyone is ogling.. But when Liam’s past makes an appearance, can they both move beyond his history and find their way to love, or will Jody continue to play her life safe?
Between Two Heartbeats follows Jody through a summer of firsts…guys, loves, breakups, and adventure. This story was originally published in the anthology 10 Weeks, but has an added epilogue for some bonus romantic fun.
Act strong. Feel strong. Be strong.
Are the words that London chants to herself to get through the day. She lives in a house where rules are inforced with fists, and drugs change hands in a near steady flow.
Cole uses his carefully placed camouflage of studious athlete to cover up a past he wishes he could erase, constantly counting down to keep himself in check. At school he pretends. At home, he hides.
The two have a friendship based on an unspoken knowledge of past and present secrets. But when London’s dad sends her to the hospital, and Cole’s stepmom has the backstory, Cole steals the chance to help a friend.
Running away together feels like the perfect plan to keep London safe, but with Cole’s stepmother working on an investigation against London’s father, the two are being attacked from all sides.
Soon, it might not be a matter of fighting to stay together, but fighting to stay alive.
Antony loves his life in New York.
He loves living with his mother and wearing designer clothes. He loves his private tutors for home school. It’s practically necessary since his mom travels the world as a reporter.
When an assignment overseas gives her the opportunity of a lifetime, she sees it as a chance for Antony to get to know his dad – a guy strange enough to live on a boat. Near dreary Seattle.
Antony’s sure that the next few months will feel like a lifetime. He and his dad can’t even fill up a five minute conversation on his birthday call.
When he meets Amber, the girl from five boats down, his prospects perk up, but when it becomes very clear, very fast, that all she’s after is friendship, Antony wonders if he’ll survive the next three months.
He is absolutely. Completely. Totally. Displaced.
And then tragedy hits.
Antony Falls, is a novel about how one person can break your world wide open.
This novel is part of the NEW LOVE series of young adult / new adult cross over romances: Knee Deep, Between Two Heartbeats, and Hard to Love.
Honor is finally setting out on her own—away from her mother and away from the modeling career she isn’t sure she wants. What she doesn’t plan for is her new roommate.
Libby is honest and fearless and adorable. She’s the girl on campus that everyone knows. The life of every party. But standing under this shadow isn’t always easy—especially when Libby doesn’t approve of the artist that Honor begins dating.
But with their new friend, Toby, Libby’s attention is finally divided, rather than focused on what Honor should, or shouldn’t, be doing with her freshman year. Toby finds himself falling for Libby as things heat up between Honor and her artist, but when Libby’s unpredictability turns dangerous, Toby and Honor realize there might be a lot more going on with everyone’s favorite party girl.
Facing an illness no one can predict, the three are torn between keeping their friendships, finding their independence, and falling in love.
A broken heart. A best friend. A first love.
Shawn is the guy Ronnie Bird promised her life to at the age of fourteen. He’s her soul mate. He’s more uptight every day, but it’s not his fault. His family life is stressful, and she’s adding to it. She just needs to be more understanding, and he’ll start to be the boy she fell in love with. She won’t give up on someone she’s loved for so long.
Luke is her best friend, and the guy she hangs with to watch girlie movies in her large blanketopias. He’s the guy she can confide in before she even goes to her girlfriends, and the guy who she’s playing opposite in Romeo and Juliet. Now her chest flutters every time he gets too close. This is new. Is Ronnie falling for him? Or is Juliet?
The lines are getting blurry, but leaving one guy for another is not something that a girl like Ronnie does. Shawn’s outbursts are starting to give her bruises, and Luke’s heart breaks as Ronnie remains torn. While her thoughts and feelings swirl around the lines between friendship and forever, she’s about to lose them both.
The Summer I Found You
Perry, co-author of Out of Play (Entangled, 2013) and the creator of several self-published romances, presents a story told through alternating perspectives about moving through loss and finding unexpected sources of support. While Kate has plans to attend college next year with her best friend Jen, Kate’s senior year is off to a rocky start. Her boyfriend dumps her for a junior, she was recently diagnosed with diabetes, and her overprotective parents are overwhelming her. When Jen introduces Kate to her 19-year-old cousin Aidan, who returned from Afghanistan missing an arm and feeling displaced within his own family, there’s an immediate and believable attraction and connection; they both know what it feels like to be weakened and pitied. Kate and Aidan’s relationship provides them with the opportunity to be honest with each other and themselves about their respective challenges, as well as an antidote to their emotional pain. Perry candidly describes their conflicted feelings, the loneliness of having a perceived disability, and the power of mutual encouragement. Ages 13–up. Agent: Jane Dystel, Dystel & Goderich Literary Management. (Mar.)
Stronger Than You Know
I wrote this book because we don’t talk often enough about what happens AFTER the rescue of an abused minor.
“Perry deftly avoids the problem-novel label thanks to complex characters and a well-structured plot. Joy’s story is very affecting, and her voice is suitably self-effacing without being ostentatious; most readers will be engrossed.” —Kirkus Reviews
“While the subject matter is tough, this realistic title will draw teens in with its believable characters, including the well-written portrayal of the adult protagonists.” —School Library Journal
“Perry’s descriptions of Joy’s intense turmoil are vivid . . . A moving survival story.” —Booklist
To read more about STRONGER THAN YOU KNOW, including the real life story Joy’s life was based on, CLICK HERE.
** This book has been used in multiple juvenile detention centers, and continues to remain on library lists for books that deal with abuse, anxiety, and depression.
Love Blind with Christa Desir
Bosler, a musician with degenerative blindness, team up to tackle a bucket list of greatest fears in this compelling novel that explores what it means to take risks.
Shy high schooler Kyle Jamieson and Hailey Bosler, a musician with degenerative blindness, team up to tackle a bucket list of greatest fears in this compelling novel that explores what it means to take risks.
“In chapters alternating between their POVs, both step outside their comfort zones, taking chances, fumbling in lust, and becoming friends in the process. But will they ever take the ultimate risk, letting their friendship turn into something more?” – Jennifer Barnes Booklist
“Hailey is confident, stubborn, and funny and isn’t afraid to show her sassy side. Meanwhile, Kyle is shy and awkward. The authors combine perfect pacing with spot-on character development that will leave readers empathizing with the characters from the very beginning. The plot takes several unexpected turns; it hits hard, exploring issues such as depression, loss of virginity, and homosexuality. VERDICT For fans of Sophie Kinsella’s Finding Audrey (Delacorte) and Jennifer Niven’s All the Bright Places (Knopf, both 2015)” – Erin Holt SLJ
To learn more about LOVE BLIND, including pictures and inspiration, CLICK HERE.
All the Forever Things
Every day is a funeral (because Gabe’s family runs a funeral home). Every day Gabe gets her life saved by Bree, and vice-versa (because that’s how it is with best friends). And that’s how it’s always been. Until now…
Best friends. An obsession with vintage. A funeral home, complete with hearse. And a prom night no one will ever forget.
INFO AND INSPO
Nothing is forever. Gabe knows that more than most girls. After all, she lives in a funeral home (it’s the family business), and she gets that everything in the world dies eventually–people, rumors, fashion trends, the nickname “Graveyard Gabe.” But her best friend, Bree, has been a constant in her life; it’s always been the two of them together. Until Bree starts seeing a guy who stands for everything Gabe thought they were against.
Gabe doesn’t know who her friend is anymore. And the only person who seems to have time for her is Hartman, the new guy, who is somehow not weirded out by the funeral home stuff (well, maybe a little). Still, Gabe doesn’t want to lose her mind over a guy the way Bree has, so she holds back.
But a very strange prom night (in the family hearse) will change what Gabe knows about friendship, love, life, and everything that comes after–forever and otherwise.
**ALL THE FOREVER THINGS was a Whitney Award finalist in 2017
Out of Play
A pill-addicted drummer is sent to Alaska to sober up where he meets his match in a kickass female hockey player.
Rock star drummer Bishop Riley just needs a few months to relax and detox before his band’s next tour. But the last place he expected to do it is in Seldon, Alaska. And the last person he wants to do it with is Penny Jones.
Fiery, headstrong Penny has zero in common with the cocky, too-hot-for-his-own-good Bishop, and she’d like to keep it that way. But the more Bishop gets under her skin, the more she wants to let him in. And the more Penny lets him see, the more Bishop wants to know this stubborn girl with the killer body and soulful eyes.
The simmering heat between them won’t go away, no matter how hard either of them tries. Their time together in Alaska may be running out—but so is their resolve for not taking a chance on love.
For more about OUT OF PLAY, CLICK HERE.