Book picks similar to
Courting Light by A. Zukowski


young-adult
fiction
new-adult
romance

Broken


Izzibella Beau - 2013
    Ayma’s expectations are not very high. She is the daughter of a control-freak mother and a father who has been absent for the past three years. She is ridiculed by the popular kids in school because of her unfortunate name and the way she dresses. Although she’s nearly eighteen, her mother controls every aspect of her life, including what she wears, who her friends are and even what foods she is allowed to eat. The only bright spot in her life is her friend Tabby. Until she meets Colton. Colton is unexpected. He’s gorgeous, popular – the guy all the girls want and the one all of the other guys want to be like. When he begins to pay attention to Ayma, she doesn’t know what to think. Things like this just don’t happen to girls like her. One obstacle after another is thrown into their path, but they can’t deny what they feel for one another. Their new-found love will be threatened by secrets from their past, challenges in their present and a future they can only dream about. Ayma struggles to find an identity apart from her mother’s controlling nature while Colton faces the results of an arrest that took place the summer before his tenth grade year. Can they find love and happiness? Or will they be destroyed by events beyond their control?

She's Mine


Jenika Snow - 2020
    That’s who Reese Trenton was, or at least how people perceived him. He came from the “wrong side of the tracks” with a perpetual scowl on his face, a body like a god, and the arrogance to match.
He was a rough around the edges kind of delinquent, but smart enough he’d gotten a full ride to BMA. And he piqued Keira’s interest in the worst—or maybe best—kind of way. He had her wanting to throw that good girl persona she carried right out the window.
He had her wanting to be just as rebellious as he was.
He knew too much about life, got drunk, and started far too many fights. And Keira wanted him like she’d never wanted anyone before.
They say opposites attract, and it seemed that was the pulling force that brought Reese and Keira together.
Heated touches.
Passionate kisses.
Filthy, secret intimacy.
They shared it all together and grew addicted for more.He thought he was broken, too battered for a girl like her. Keira wanted to show Reese that despite the cracks he wore, the scars he sported, they were meant to be together.
But not everyone thought Reese and Keira should be together, and as the drama and chaos erupted, as people tried to rip them apart, they realized their loyalty and love for each other had never been put to the test more than it had now.
Reader note: This story was previously published as Giving it to the Bad Boy. It has been completely rewritten, re-edited, and new content added throughout the entire story. Basically… it’s a brand new book set in the elite world of the BMA series.

Welcome To New Haven


Dawn Doyle - 2014
    She doesn't know who is but he seems to look for her.She loses her ability to speak in front of him. So when she finds out he is related to one of her friends, things start to get a little complicated.One day, one of the guys in the group unwittingly causes one of Holly's biggest fears to come to the surface.What follows is a journey to the unknown.Excited, yet nervous, can Holly finally show how she feels?Alex Valencia is the high school 'beef cake'. Girls want him, guys want to be like him, but he's not interested.He just wants a quiet time, to be left alone and enjoy school.That is, until Holly shows up. Never before has he felt the need to be with someone. His days are filled with thoughts of Holly and he finds himself having feelings that he'd never felt before. For any girl. Especially Stacey. She harrasses him and he can't seem to get her to stop. One day, that changes…The high school bitch and slut does something she shouldn't and the events that follow cause some problems.Happy endings are saught but difficulties must be overcome to achieve them. Not just for Holly, but for her friends.Excerpt: Stacey was in his bed, waiting for him. She had the sheet over her but it was evident that she was naked. Her disgusting clothes were all over his floor. Alex started to heave. “Go” said Ben. “I’ll stay here.” Alex ran to the master bathroom and vomited. He could hear Ben shouting at Stacey.“Get out of his bed, you f*****g crazy whore!” he shouted. “I’m waiting for Alex.” She said with venom in her tone. “What the f***?! So you thought you would break into his house and get in his bed?” “Now he can see how much I want him.” She said, as if that made it all ok. “No” said Alex from the doorway, his stomach now empty. “I hate you. I despise everything about you. I can’t even look at you without feeling sick.”“You don’t mean that, baby.” She said, trying to soothe him. “Then why have I just puked my guts up, seeing you there. I’m only standing here now because there’s nothing left inside. Now. Get. Out. Of. My. Bed.” Alex was so angry he could feel his blood boiling in his veins. His jaw hurt from gritting this teeth and his heart was pounding. And, for the first time since meeting Holly, it wasn’t a good thing. “Let’s just talk about it baby.” She said, batting her eyes and holding out a hand. “Don’t you call me that! Don’t you ever call me that! I’m not your f*****g baby!” he almost screamed. He quickly glanced around his room. She’d been through his stuff. His clothes, his drawers.Oh no, no, no! Please no! “Get. Out. Now. And put your skanky clothes back on!” he growled. “But, Alex, I love you!” she pleaded.Alex dry heaved and took a deep breath.

Dating Diaries


Kristen Kemp - 2004
    Twelve weeks. A buoyant and observant comedy about having a long-term relationship end -- and discovering what life is like outside of it.Katie James has been dating Paul for the past five years, since seventh grade. Then, as the prom approaches, he dumps her. The last time she was on her own, she was wearing a training bra. Now she's about to see what life is like without Paul -- and what it's like to date. She makes a resolution -- she will date twelve guys in twelve weeks, making up for all the time she wasted with Paul. But nothing quite goes the way she plans. Dating is difficult -- and difficult can be both fraught and fun. Katie's about to find out what she's been missing . . . and how to be herself without a guy

The Other Side of Tomorrow


Micalea Smeltzer
    One minute she was a seemingly normal fourteen-year-old, and the next her life was turned upside down with only a few words. Three years later, she’s receiving a kidney transplant and can start living again, only now she’s not sure she knows how.Life can end in a moment…Jasper Werth knows this all too well, seeing as a drunk driver killed his little brother. He’s always been a carefree guy, never taking life too seriously, but losing his brother is a major blow, and he finds himself lost until Willa walks into his life.Life can mend the most broken parts of our souls…Willa and Jasper couldn’t be more opposite, but as fate brings them together they’ll learn maybe they’re not so different after all.Sometimes what you need comes in a package you least expect.

Beastly (The Ever After Collection)


Noelle Marie - 2016
    But without an enchantress or magic spell to break, what else is there? Just a damaged boy and a curious girl who doesn’t know how to leave well enough alone. This is the story of how they come together. Seventeen-year-old Emma Belrose didn’t know what to think of new boy, Heath Thompson, but what she did think wasn’t exactly flattering. He was rude, crass, and downright mean. Which was why it was so fantastically stupid that she couldn’t stop thinking about him. When stuck together to complete a months-long project for school, Emma finds herself slowly slipping past Heath’s emotional walls – more like steel barriers, really – and getting to know the boy beneath the prickly facade. Even as she begins to fall for him, however, a handful of looming obstacles continue to disrupt any bliss they may find. Not the least of these obstacles are Heath’s dark past and Gunther Kingston, the popular jock who is obsessed with Emma. With the odds seemingly stacked against them, can they reach out and grasp their happily ever after? Beastly is the first book of The Ever After Collection and is meant to be read as a stand-alone novel.

Freak 'N' Gorgeous


Sebastian J. Plata - 2018
    That same day, his classmate, Camilla Hadi, has her own transformation; the lean, pretty athlete is now devastatingly ugly.The teens face the cruel world of high school from very different perspectives. Konrad shoots to the top of the pecking order, Camilla slips into pariah status. But soon the school starts rallying around Camilla, and Konrad’s sudden popularity sours as people blame him for her transformation. And, the truth is, so does she. All he wants is for everyone to like him. All she wants is to destroy his perfect life. So what if they could use each other for personal gain?Told in dual POV.

Girl in Development


Jordan Roter - 2006
    Sam's a vintage-chic, East Coast transplant who would so rather be reading Virginia Woolf than Variety-not the Tinseltown type. From her spoiled roommate to the backstabbing staffers and D-girls working in the development department at "Authentic Pictures," everything about L.A. feels fake. And, although smart, self-protective Sam is loathe to admit it, it's all a little intimidating. Can this girl in development survive being thrust into the spotlight and realize her very own Hollywood ending, or will the summer be a tragedy of epic proportions, packed with poseurs, party girls, D-girls, and betrayal?

Escape the Doubt


Andrea Michelle - 2013
    Shifting apart. Making lyrical love, dancing wildly in the dark. Author Note: *The Shifting Series is not paranormal. This Coming of Age Romance trilogy is a love story told in the dual POV of two best friends, Josh and Riley, woven poetically with his music and her dark poetry. It’s not an easy story to tell, but love isn’t always rainbows and sunshine and often times we must travel through the dark to find the light at the end of the tunnel. This is their journey. Is taking a chance with your heart worth the escape, or was it better to have never loved at all? Can forgiveness really set you free?After the unexpected death of her Dad, and the haunting manner in which he died, Riley Shaw built invisible walls around her heart. Barriers she created to protect her from splintering into broken pieces that couldn’t be repaired. She was unable to move forward from her past, letting the guilt of her parent’s mistakes dictate her own choices.Dean Warren was safe. Being with him was innocent and peaceful because she didn’t truly love him. His words held her captive in a false sense of security. His eyes were deceptive, and his promises of never pushing her beyond what she was willing to give were broken, leaving Riley in a state of regret and doubt.Joshua Parker had the power to take what was left of Riley’s splintered pieces and ruin her completely, or make her whole again. He was her best friend, her next-door neighbor—everything she wanted and settled on never having. Loving him was as easy as breathing air. The fear of losing him forever was more real to her than the feelings she couldn’t escape.When faced with the very thing she feared the most, and in the arms she thought were safe, Riley finds herself questioning every decision she has made over the past two years. When she finally escapes the doubt in her head, and accepts the truth in her heart, is it too late?“I'm so close to the edge of the cliff that I know one more breath, one more inch, I could fall.” -Riley ShawDisclaimer: Not recommended for anyone under the age of 17 due to underage drinking, sexual content and adult language.***Warning*** This is book one in a trilogy (The beginning of Josh and Riley). All of the books in this series are available.***

Even the Moon Has Scars


Steph Campbell - 2014
    Two broken hearts. One night to set each other free. Almost dying from an undiagnosed heart condition means every second of your life is a precious gift to be guarded. Lena Pettitt was born a miracle. And her parents never let her forget it. Even if that daily reminder kept her from experiencing the one thing they were trying to protect most--her life. Gabriel Martinez’s heart has been ripped out. His pride has been stomped on. Oh, and he now has an arrest record that’s caused an even bigger rift between him and his DA mother. All for a love that wasn’t really true. Now he’s exiled to his grandmother’s, working on his late grandpa’s old Corvair, when a shivering girl knocks on the garage door. Lena, left alone for the first time ever, has locked herself out of her house. Gabe knows he could help this girl get back inside her house--but that may mean missing the next train to Boston to pick up the part he’s spent eight weeks tracking down. She can wait for him at his grandmother’s or… A few hours, an aluminum valve cover, and some strong coffee later, neither Gabe nor Lena can feign disappointment when they race to the station and arrive just as the last train home from Boston is pulling out. As jaded as he is, Gabe can’t deny the fact that he’s excited to spend the night exploring a city he knows nearly every corner of, with a girl who sees magic in the simplest things. Lena has been waiting for her tiny world to crack open her entire life. Now that it’s finally happened, she finds the only thing she can focus on is the unexpected tour guide who opens her eyes to possibilities she never imagined. All they have is this one night, together, under the bright moon in a city full of hidden beauty. It’s one night that will change how they see the world and the paths their hearts will take forever.

Bully Academy


Mina Thorne - 2019
    As punishment I was shipped across the country to live with my biological dad and his new family.My stepmother hates me, my stepbrother can’t stand to look at me, and my new school is filled with rich kids who think they’re better than me. But I’ve been a fighter my whole life and I won’t let any of them get me down.They don’t call it Bully Academy for nothing, and with the hottest boys wanting me and the meanest girls hating me, I will come out on top and I will get my revenge. I don't know how, but I do know I'll have one crazy year getting there.

Sweetest Heartbreak


Heather Bentley - 2017
    With a supportive family, a great job out of college, and her best friend, Eli, by her side, she doesn’t take anything this life has to offer for granted. A lesson she learned when she lost her dad to cancer. Another lesson she’s learned? Don’t date your best friend. But she and Eli worked through the awkwardness and are now firmly planted in the friend zone. Until she meets Eli’s other best friend, Heath, and true feelings are exposed.Fresh out of rehab, Heath Braeburn is Leah’s opposite in every way. Spoiled. Reckless. Impetuous. The only thing they have in common is Eli, who has been by Heath’s side through it all, including when his mom up and left years ago. A fact he’s never gotten over. But at twenty-four years old, it’s time to prove that he’s not the man everyone has come to expect him to be. Starting with Leah. She is his clean slate. His game changer. But will he become Leah’s biggest regret?This is a story of what happens when friendships are tested, words go unspoken, and hearts are broken. And how three friends all manage to find their way back to each other.Due to strong sexual content, coarse language and mature subject matter, this book is not suitable for readers under the age of 18.

Destined


Rubina Ramesh - 2017
    But he had his priorities set and her sick father was nothing but a burden. Esha didn't have any other choice but to apply for a loan from her office. But she had not banked on the fact that the Head of Geno Technologies needed her for other reasons.When Rohan Sharma saw Esha for the first time, he felt she was the one. He had no intention of falling in love with her for the pain of the past was still too much to bear. But he did need Esha as a decoy to his plan. But Esha was not a damsel in distress who would bend to his will easily. While he was sure that he would marry her only for six months, he still couldn’t understand why he felt a searing jealousy every time, her ex-fiancé Ayush’s name was mentioned.While these two souls had other plans in their lives, Destiny conspires to bring them together. But will the stench of Death let them live their lives?

The First Summer


Melissa Adams - 2018
    Every summer she goes to Summer Camp at Lake Emerald where she reunites with her BFFs Brie and Hazel. Camp gets her away from her super strict parents in LA and she can’t wait to see her epic crush Joel. Joel doesn’t even know her name and she has been adoring him from afar for two summers. But this year, Clary has legit boobs and she’s all grown up, so will Joel finally notice her? She also meets annoying but hot Xander, who is Joel’s best friend and loves embarrassing Clary with snide remarks and his unwavering sarcasm. Logan is an old friend who is also all grown up and this year wants more than being just friends. So Clary finds herself involved with two boys and things are heating up, from a first kiss to a first orgasm. And if you add to the mix Xander’s older, sexy cousin Austin? Things are sure to get complicated. Clary knows she has to make a choice and agonises about it, while going from one heated exchange to another with her boys. But what if the boys knew and she didn’t have to make a choice? What if it was possible to love three or even four boys at once and they agreed to share? What if someone else had noticed and started sending Clary malicious, threatening notes with photos of her romantic encounters? Add some random attacks in the woods surrounding camp and the suspicions start: who is doing this? The resident mean girls Lucy, Hayley and Leah? The bad boys Rob and Justin? Joel’s girlfriend mad southern belle Jemma? This will be a summer of love, sex, discovery, fun and danger for Clary, her boys and her friends.

the Trouble with Hate is...


Elizabeth Stevens - 2019
    …it’s safer. …it’s often not hate at all. The Granger and Drake families have been through everything together; the suicide of the eldest Granger son, the Drake patriarch’s cancer diagnosis, family holidays with only slight maiming, and more dance recitals than anyone would care to remember. Leilani Granger can’t stand the person Casper Drake has become, and Casper doesn’t even recognise his best mate’s little sister anymore. Loving each other is second-nature, but they don’t know how not to hate each other either. As they face losing Leilani’s only remaining brother and Casper’s best mate to his inner demons, old habits lead them back to each other for comfort. But, after one night of a deeper connection than either of them were ready for, the lines between the emotional and the physical start to blur. Leilani wasn’t the kind to lose herself in meaningless sex. Casper’s been doing it for years. It's the only time they can forget the storm clouds in their lives. It’s the only time they can remember the sunshine. It’s the only time hate doesn’t get in the way. But, the trouble with hate is…it’s often not hate at all. NB: Contains mature content. Not suitable for younger readers. Please be aware that this story is set in Australia and therefore uses Australian English spelling and syntax.