Young Adult Literature

’90s Timeslip YA Novels

Tirzah Price

Senior Contributing Editor

Most of Tirzah Price's life decisions have been motivated by a desire to read as many books as humanly possible. Tirzah holds an MFA in Writing for Children & Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts, and has worked as an independent bookseller and librarian. She’s also the author of the Jane Austen Murder Mysteries, published by HarperTeen, and Bibliologist at TBR: Tailored Book Recommendations. Follow her on Twitter @TirzahPrice.

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As a child of the ’90s, I find it both hilarious and painful when Gen Z idealizes that decade. It also feels as though 1995 was only 15 years ago at MOST, so I’m always truly flabbergasted every time I remember that the teens watching ’90s shows and bringing back ’90s fashion weren’t even alive yet. Time gets to us all! If you need even further proof that the ’90s are in, look no further than the YA books with ’90s settings that are cropping up! I find them fun in a nostalgic way, even as the time period is dubbed “historical” and that makes me feel like a dinosaur! If you are curious about the ’90s and you want to travel back in time, then make sure these ’90s timeslip YA novels are on your TBR!

Throwback cover

Throwback by Maurene Goo

Sam is nothing like her mom, Priscilla, who as a first-generation Korean American bought all the way into the idealized American teenage fantasy. Sam has no interest in any of it, but when she lands in the ’90s after a big blowout fight with her mom, she’s shocked to find herself meeting her teenage mom. As she struggles to find a way to fix things so she can get back to her own time, she learns some surprising things about her mom, and herself.

Your Life Has Been Delayed cover

Your Life Has Been Delayed by Michelle I. Mason

Jenny has just had an amazing summer vacation in New York City, and now she’s boarding a plane home to St. Louis, excited for what the future brings. But when she lands, she’s shocked to discover that it’s no longer 1995 — it’s 2020 and her plane has been missing for 25 years. No one knows what to think about time slip, but as conspiracy theories abound and Jenny adjusts to a life where all her friends are now in their forties, she finds some surprising connections.

The Time Between Us cover

The Time Between Us by Tamara Ireland Stone

Anna lives in Chicago, in 1995. Bennet is from San Francisco and the year 2012. Seventeen years and miles apart, their paths shouldn’t cross, but they do when Bennet travels through time and lands in Anna’s life. Anna is drawn to him, even if she can’t explain why, and soon they find themselves falling for each other. Is there a way they can be together, even when they belong in different times?

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