PG Rated Romances

swoonWhen I was in middle school (back when JNCOS were popular) if you said you were “going out” with a boy it meant you wrote his name all over your binder with little hearts, held hands in the hallway, and maybe you even passed notes between classes; but you never actually went out anywhere. Middle school kids today are about ten years more experienced than I was at that same age. Kids today are exposed to so much more language, violence, and sex in their lives through television, the Internet, and yes… books! It’s difficult to know where the line is for students in middle school because they think they’re too mature for some age-appropriate books and not old enough for some YA books. I’m a full supporter of giving students the right to choose their own books, but I will draw a line at books with sex scenes that will make even this librarian blush. So here is my list of middle school appropriate romances, if you know of good books that I might have missed, please let me know so I can make sure to add them to my library collection. I’ve included age ratings from School Library Journal (SLJ) and Common Sense Media (CSM) and book summaries from Follett.

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To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before series by Jenny Han

“Lara Jean writes love letters to all the boys she has loved and then hides them in a hatbox until one day those letters are accidentally sent.” Netflix movie available 8/19/2018. SLJ: grades 7-10    CSM: ages 13+ 

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P.S. I Like You by Kasie West

“Every day in chemistry class, high school student and aspiring songwriter Lily Abbott is finding notes left to her by a mystery boy, love letters really, and she hopes they are from Lucas, a boy she is attracted to–so when she finds out who they are really from, she is shocked and unsure about how to respond.” I recommend all of Kasie West’s books. SLJ: grades 7-10    CSM: ages 12+

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The Selection series by Kiera Cass

“Sixteen-year-old America Singer is living in the caste-divided nation of Illea, which formed after the war that destroyed the United States. America is chosen to compete in the Selection–a contest to see which girl can win the heart of Illea’s prince–but all she really wants is a chance for a future with her secret love, Aspen, who is a caste below her.” Also check out The Siren by Kiera Cass SLJ: grades 8+    CSM: ages 13+ 

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Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith

“Hadley and Oliver fall in love on the flight from New York to London, but after a cinematic kiss they lose track of each other at the airport until fate brings them back together on a very momentous day.” SLJ: grades 8-11    CSM: N/A 

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Well, that Was Awkward by Rachel Vail

“There are unexpected consequences when thirteen-year-old Gracie sends texts pretending to be her bashful best friend, Sienna, and their friend Emmett starts texting back pretending to be shy A.J.” SLJ: grades 5-8    CSM: 11+ 

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Project (Un)popular series by Kristen Tracy

“Sixth-graders Perry and Venice, photographers for their middle-school yearbook, are frustrated to learn that only pictures of popular students are welcome, but when Venice gets involved with a boy Perry doesn’t like, Perry puts their friendship at risk by siding with Anya, the editor-in-chief.” SLJ: grades 5-8    CSM: N/A

The Summer I Turned Pretty (Summer, #1)

The Summer I Turned Pretty series by Jenny Han

“Belly spends the summer she turns sixteen at the beach just like every other summer of her life, but this time things are very different as she finds herself falling for a boy she has known since childhood.” SLJ: grades 5-8    CSM: N/A

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