Book picks similar to
Every Inferno by Johanna Parkhurst


young-adult
contemporary
mystery
romance

I'll Always Miss You


Raine O'Tierney - 2015
    Macklin "Mackie" Cormack’s only interests are reading and the outdoors. Yeah, right. Isa's convinced Mackie is either a pyro or a klepto. Plus, as a white kid, Mackie looks ridiculous in the Zamans' Arab American household. Forced to share a bedroom, the boys keep butting heads until an absurd fight finally breaks the tension between them. Isa’s just starting to figure life out: this new houseguest, his cultural identity, school, and even girls, when the entire family is uprooted from their home for reasons Isa can't understand. They move from their tiny city apartment to a giant, old house in a small town, hours away from everything he's ever known. Oh, and the new house? It's probably haunted, or so says the blank-faced ten-year-old next door. As if things weren't weird enough, Isa's friendship with Mackie suddenly takes a strange turn down a path Isa's not sure he’s ready to follow. It turns out Mackie Cormack isn’t nearly as boring as Isa once imagined.

The Law of Inertia


Sophie Gonzales - 2018
    A foster kid with a checkered past and a history of suicide attempts, Ash was just another number in a system that failed him. But to James, Ash was never just a number, and the facts around his death no longer stack up so neatly. Now James has plenty of questions, and the one person who might have held the answers—Ash’s older brother, Elliot—has left town. And if anyone knows where he is, they aren’t talking. As James searches for Elliot and uncovers the tangle of lies and false alibis he left in his wake, he grows suspicious of what really happened on Ash’s last day. After all, innocent people don't run.

Surrender Your Sons


Adam Sass - 2020
    His SAT scores bombed, the old man he delivers meals to died, and when he came out to his religious zealot mother, she had him kidnapped and shipped off to a secluded island. His final destination: Nightlight Ministries, a conversion therapy camp that will be his new home until he “changes.” But Connor’s troubles are only beginning. At Nightlight, everyone has something to hide from the campers to the “converted” staff and cagey camp director, and it quickly becomes clear that no one is safe. Connor plans to escape and bring the other kidnapped teens with him. But first, he’s exposing the camp’s horrible truths for what they are— and taking this place down.

Stag: A Story


Ben Monopoli - 2013
    Unlike his four friends, it isn't because he can't land a date... it's because he doesn't want one. All he wants is to keep to himself and get through the night with his secret intact. Going stag might be his best defense -- if he's strong enough to do it.Long before he was the key-touching guy from THE PAINTING OF PORCUPINE CITY, Ollie Wade was a boy discovering that his life would be more complicated than he ever imagined.

We Now Return to Regular Life


Martin Wilson - 2017
    His older sister, Beth, thought he was dead. His childhood friend Josh thought it was all his fault. They were the last two people to see him alive.Until now. Because Sam has been found, and he’s coming home. Beth desperately wants to understand what happened to her brother, but her family refuses to talk about it—even though Sam is clearly still affected by the abuse he faced at the hands of his captor.And as Sam starts to confide in Josh about his past, Josh can’t admit the truths he’s hidden deep within himself: that he’s gay, and developing feelings for Sam. And, even bigger: that he never told the police everything he saw the day Sam disappeared. As Beth and Josh struggle with their own issues, their friends and neighbors slowly turn on Sam, until one night when everything explodes. Beth can’t live in silence. Josh can’t live with his secrets. And Sam can’t continue on until the whole truth of what happened to him is out in the open.For fans of thought-provoking stories like The Face on the Milk Carton, this is a book about learning to be an ally—even when the community around you doesn’t want you to be.

Hideous Beauty


William Hussey - 2020
    To Dylan’s surprise they are met with support and congratulations, and an amazing reception at their highschool dance. Perhaps people aren’t as narrow-minded as he thought?But Dylan’s happiness is short-lived. Ellis suddenly becomes angry, withdrawn, and as they drive home from the dance, he loses control of the car, sending it plunging into Hunter’s Lake. Barely conscious, Dylan is pulled free of the wreck, while Ellis is left to drown.Grief-stricken, Dylan vows to discover what happened to Ellis that night and piece together the last months of his boyfriend’s life – and realises just how little he knew about the boy he loved.

Last Seen Leaving


Caleb Roehrig - 2016
    How can he uncover her secrets without revealing his own?Flynn's girlfriend, January, is missing. The cops are asking questions he can't answer, and her friends are telling stories that don't add up. All eyes are on Flynn—as January's boyfriend, he must know something.But Flynn has a secret of his own. And as he struggles to uncover the truth about January's disappearance, he must also face the truth about himself.

Grand & Humble


Brent Hartinger - 2006
    And yet, Harlan and Manny both share the same sense of foreboding, that something is not quite right in either of their lives.They have something else in common as well, even if they don’t know it. Fourteen years ago, when they were both three years old, a tragedy occurred–an accident that would link the two boys together forever, even as it ultimately drove them apart. It’s an event that both of them barely remember, but it haunts them still. Somehow both boys know that nothing will ever be right again until they can each unravel the secret of the terrifying instant that lies at the center of both their lives.Winner of the Scandiuzzi Children’s Book Award!

Waiting for Walker


Robin Reardon - 2017
    His folks have split, and now he lives with his mother in the manager's unit of a motel. His mother is seeing a medium to communicate with Micah's older brother, killed in Afghanistan. He had to change schools for his junior year, which made him retreat further into himself, hiding behind his camera—and hiding that he's gay.One sunny day in June, as he's shooting a dead seagull on the shore of Long Island Sound, a mysterious guy appears in a beautiful sailboat. At first, the guy's boat shoes are the image that stays with Micah. But soon it's the person himself, Walker Donnell, who haunts Micah's dreams.Walker's life looks perfect to Micah. His wealthy parents adore him; he has everything he could want; he's gorgeous and generous; and he falls hard for Micah. But he has a secret: Walker is intersex.The closer Walker and Micah grow, the more Walker feels a need to be sure of himself in ways he hasn't fully faced before, and now it's his turn to retreat. Micah knows Walker is worth waiting for, so he waits. And waits.

Girl on the Verge


Pintip Dunn - 2017
    But at home, her Thai grandmother chides her for being too westernized. Only through the clothing Kan designs in secret can she find a way to fuse both cultures into something distinctly her own.When her mother agrees to provide a home for a teenage girl named Shelly, Kan sees a chance to prove herself useful. Making Shelly feel comfortable is easy at first—her new friend is eager to please, embraces the family’s Thai traditions, and clearly looks up to Kan. Perhaps too much. Shelly seems to want everything Kanchana has, even the blond, blue-eyed boy she has a crush on. As Kan’s growing discomfort compels her to investigate Shelly’s past, she’s shocked to find how much it intersects with her own—and just how far Shelly will go to belong…

How to Be Remy Cameron


Julian Winters - 2019
    He's the out-and-gay, super-likable guy that people admire for his confidence. The only person who may not know Remy that well is Remy himself. So when he is assigned to write an essay describing himself, he goes on a journey to reconcile the labels that people have attached to him, and get to know the real Remy Cameron.

Remember


Eileen Cook - 2015
    Her father runs the company that trademarked the "Memtex" procedure to wipe away sad memories, and plenty of people think it shouldn't be legal. Then a new demonstrator crosses her path, Neil, who’s as persistent as he is hot. Not that Harper’s noticing, since she already has a boyfriend.When Harper suffers a loss, she’s shocked her father won’t allow her to get the treatment, so she finds a way to get it without his approval. Soon afterward, she’s plagued with strange symptoms, including hallucinations of a woman who is somehow both a stranger, yet incredibly familiar. Harper begins to wonder if she is delusional, or if these are somehow memories.Together with Neil, who insists he has his own reasons for needing answers about the real dangers of Memtex, Harper begins her search for the truth. What she finds could uproot all she’s ever believed about her life…

Trouble Girls


Julia Lynn Rubin
    The girls are packing light: a supply of Diet Coke for Lux and her ‘89 Canon to help her frame the world in a sunnier light; half a pack of cigarettes for Trixie that she doesn’t really smoke, and a knife—one she’s just hanging on to for a friend—that she’s never used before.But a single night of violence derails their trip and will forever change the course of the girls’ lives, as they go from ordinary high schoolers to wanted fugitives. Trying to stay ahead of the cops and a hellscape of media attention, the girls grapple with an unforgiving landscape, rapidly diminishing supplies, and disastrous decisions at every turn. As they are transformed by the media into the face of a #MeToo movement they didn’t ask to lead and the road before them begins to run out, Trixie and Lux realize that they can only rely on each other, and that the love they find together is the one thing that truly makes them free.In rushing, powerful prose Julia Lynn Rubin takes readers on “a blistering, unapologetic thrill ride” (Emma Berquis) that will leave them haunted and reeling. Trouble Girls is “a powerful, beautifully-written gut punch” (Sophie Gonzales).

Home and Away


Candice Montgomery - 2018
    She's a senior, she's got great friends, and a supportive and wealthy family. She even plays football as the only girl on her private high school's team.But when she catches her mamma trying to stuff a mysterious box in the closet, her identity is suddenly called into question. Now Tasia’s determined to unravel the lies that have overtaken her life. Along the way, she discovers what family and forgiveness really mean, and that her answers don’t come without a fee. An artsy bisexual boy from the Valley could help her find them—but only if she stops fighting who she is, beyond the color of her skin.

Clancy of the Undertow


Christopher Currie - 2015
    We’re face to face under 24-hour fluorescents with the thoroughly unromantic buzz of aircon in our ears and endless flabby wedges of seated trucker’s arsecrack as our only visual stimulus.In a dead-end town like Barwen a girl has only got to be a little different to feel like a freak. And Clancy, a typical sixteen-year-old misfit with a moderately dysfunctional family, a genuine interest in Nature Club and a major crush on the local hot girl, is packing a capital F.As the summer begins, Clancy’s dad is involved in a road smash that kills two local teenagers. While the family is dealing with the reaction of a hostile town, Clancy meets someone who could possibly—at last—become a friend. Not only that, the unattainable Sasha starts to show what may be a romantic interest.In short, this is the summer when Clancy has to figure out who the hell she is.