Valentine’s Day just might be a night in this year with the pandemic. But that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a book and a great dinner or dessert! These YA romances pair perfectly with some of your favorite foods. So pick up a great read and dive into a yummy treat this holiday to celebrate.
A Pho Love Story by Loan Le and a bowl of pho
This love story by Le is filled with delicious descriptions of pho! Enjoy a bowl of the Vietnamese soup filled with broth, rice noodles, and herbs alongside this lovely read this Valentine’s Day!
Bao Nguyen would describe himself as a rock: steady and strong but uninteresting with average grades, working at his parents’ pho restaurant. Linh Mai sees herself as a firecracker: stable when unlit, but full of potential for joy and fire. She dreams of pursuing a career in art, but her parents’ rely on her to work full-time at their pho restaurant. The Mais and the Nguyens have been at odds for years, and Bao and Lin have always avoided each other. But when a chance encounter brings Linh and Bao together and sparks fly, they wonder if they can find love in the midst of feuding families and complicated histories.
Tweet Cute by Emma Lord and grilled cheese
All is fair in love and cheese – grilled cheese that is. Whip yourself up some sandwiches and maybe a side of tomato soup as you dive into Lord’s rom-com.
Pepper is an overachiever and a perfectionist. While her family may be falling apart, their massive food-chain is booming thanks to Pepper secretly running Big League Burger’s massive Twitter account. Jack is the class clown and the thorn in her side when he’s not working at his family’s deli. But when Big League Burger his grandma’s iconic grilled cheese recipe, he plans on taking them down one tweet at a time. When Pepper’s and Jack’s feud turns into a Twitter war, they don’t realize that they are fighting with each other on the Internet as they are falling for each other in real life on an anonymous chat app Jack built. As their relationship deepens and their online shenanigans escalate, the battle becomes more and more personal.
Kingdom of the Wicked by Kerri Maniscalco and shrimp scampi
When you dive into Maniscalco’s story, the descriptions of the Italian food will make your mouth water. Make some shrimp scampi and top some linguine because you’ll need it: you’ll want to devour this book in one go.
Emilia and her twin sister Vittoria are streghe who blend in with humans by working at their family’s famous Scicillian restaurant. But when Vittoria doesn’t show up to dinner service one night, Emilia goes out searching – and finds her desecrated beyond belief. Furious, Emilia decides to hunt down the killer in revenge even if that means she has to use forbidden dark magic. But when she meets Wrath, one of the Wicked-princes of Hell, who is tasked by his master to solve the series of women’s murders on the island, they reluctantly team up. But nothing is as it seems…
A Cuban Girl’s Guide to Tea and Tomorrow by Laura Taylor Namey and high tea featuring scones and pastelitos
Who says high tea can’t have both English and Cuban pastries? Have the best of both worlds as you dive into this sweet standalone by Namey.
Lila Reyes was determined to take over her abuela’s role as head baker at their panadería, move in with her BFF after graduation, and live happily ever after with her boyfriend. But when everything fell apart – including Lila – her parents decide to make a new plan. Now she is staying with family friends in Winchester, England for three months to rest and relax. But with the lack of sun, a grumpy inn cook, and a small town lacking Miami flavor (both in food and otherwise), this is anything but a perfect vacation. But when she meets Orion Maxwell, a teashop clerk, he decides to become her personal tour guide. As she travels the city and countryside with him, Lila begins to fall for Orion and England, imagining a new life for herself. But can she give up the life she has always known?
A Taste for Love by Jennifer Yen and matcha cookies with boba tea
This debut has been called Pride and Prejudice meets The Great British Bake Off – and we are totally ready to read it. This Valentine’s Day, treat yourself with yummy matcha cookies and boba tea for the perfect holiday filled with rest and relaxation.
To her friends, Liza Yang seems perfectly smart, kind, dreams big, and never shies away from a challenge. But to her mother, Liza is stubborn, rebellious, and determined to push back against all of Mrs. Yang’s traditional values, especially when it comes to dating. The one thing Liza and her mom do bond over is their love for baking. Her mom’s popular Yin & Yang Bakery hosts an annual junior competition and Liza agrees to help out, but when she arrives on the first day, Liza realizes that all of the contestants are young Asian American men her mother has handpicked for Liza to date. It doesn’t help that she is actually attracted to one of them, the hot James Wong. But as Liza fights between love and her mother’s approval, Liza will understand there is not just one way to fall in love.