3 YA Books for Classic Romcom Lovers

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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I love a good romcom, both on screen and on the page. One of the micro-trends I’ve noticed in YA lately is how some books pay homage to certain romcoms, while also managing to be wonderfully unique and exciting at the same time. I decided to highlight three such books, all of which I highly recommend — although you know that I am always open to more books by authors of color and books that feature LGBTQIA+ couples! Get on that, publishing!

cover image of Better Than the Movies by Lynn Painter

Better Than the Movies by Lynn Painter

Liz Buxbaum is obsessed with romance, and wishes for her own movie magic romantic ending with Michael, her long-time crush who is back in town. She’s certain that if they can get to prom together, it’ll be just the beginning of their happily ever after. In order to get closer to Michael, Liz must befriend Wes, her annoying next-door neighbor that she’s never really tolerated, but who seems to be striking up a fast friendship with her crush. As Liz endeavors to make her romantic fantasies a reality, she finds that Wes might not be so bad after all. This is a fun book that is all about the love of romcoms and those iconic moments, as the cover might indicate!

cover of Last Chance Books

Last Chance Books by Kelsey Rodkey

Although I do have my issues with You’ve Got Mail, there’s a part of my heart that will always love how unabashedly bookish it is and whenever fall gets in full swing, I think about Meg Ryan hauling her pumpkin through the streets of NYC to the Shop Around the Corner. Luckily for us, there’s a YA book that is essentially You’ve Got Mail, but updated! Madeline is spending her last summer before college desperately trying to save her family’s independent bookstore, which she wants to take over when she graduates college. But when her new crush turns out to be an employee at Prologue, the chain bookstore across the street, her plans go awry.

cover image of Tell Me How You Really Feel

Tell Me How You Really Feel by Aminah Mae Safi

Okay, technically this one is inspired by a TV show that is more of a dramedy than a romcom, but I say it counts! If you love Gilmore Girls, and you always thought that none of Rory’s guys were ever worthy, and you dig the dynamic between Rory and Paris…this book is for you! It’s about Rachel and Sana, two very different girls who somehow become enemies freshman year and now are stuck working together on the cusp of graduation. With Rachel’s future hanging in the balance, they find that maybe…they don’t hate each other after all. It has so many subtle nods to Gilmore Girls, from Sana’s family dynamics to certain pivotal scenes, except it’s a queer love story! I love everything about it.

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