Playlists for Our Favorite YA Books


We here at Pine Reads Review love a good playlist as much as the next person! Nothing beats the perfect selection of music to get you through the day. We also love YA books, and that got us thinking—what would it look like if we combined our two loves? So, we put our bookish brains to the test, and we’re proud to present to you our personally curated playlists for some of our favorite YA books!

You’d Be Home Now by Kathleen Glasgow

When Joey, Emory’s brother, comes back from rehab at the start of the new school year, Emory feels immense pressure to keep him clean. While dealing with her own struggles (like boy crushes) she is plagued by memories and judgment from four months ago—the car accident that ruined Emmy’s knee, showed just how bad Joey’s drug problem was, put Joey’s friend Luther in jail, and killed Candy MontClaire. Emmy is left to work through it all as she tries to find her place in the small world that is Mill Haven and pass junior year.

Little Brother by Ella Vos: “Can we talk more to one another? / Missin’ the days when we were younger / Now all I hear is a distant echo/ Turning your back when your eyes look yellow / Follow me into the night / I’ll be here ‘til you’re alright / Stay close, little brother / I know your true colors / When the world don’t listen you can call my name / Stay close little brother / Stay close”

Open Arms by RKCB and Demo Taped: “Say that you want to save me / But how come you never hear me out? / And I know that you’re frustrated / How you always leave / I need to know if you don’t feel the same / Will you keep a hold on me when I’m turning away? / I’m on my own in the cold of the rain / Will you be my shelter? / Will you be my open arms?” 

Edge of Town by Middle Kids: “I cannot remember anything you say / When the streets are talking, yeah, they call my name / And I walk a little further, I could go all day / And the trees are reaching pointing out the way / I got all muddled up and journeyed to the edge of town / And then the road cracked open, sucked me in, then I went down” 

Cardiac Arrest by Bad Suns: “I’ve been trying to keep my grip / Yeah, I think I’m over this / I can hear it now, oh no, oh no / Yeah, my tongue will let it slip / Why’d I do those things I did? / I can taste it now, oh no, oh no / I’ll try my best, how much do I invest?” 

White Blood by Oh Wonder: “I’m ready to climb this mountain inside / Impossible heights / Said you’d always be my white blood / Circulate the right love / Giving me your white blood / I need you right here with me, here with me”

Check out our review of You’d Be Home Now here!

The Prison Healer by Lynette Noni

Kiva is the healer at the infamous death prison, Zalindov, at only seventeen. Prisoners from every kingdom are sent there, and political rebellion is strong in about half the prisoners. However, Kiva’s life will never be the same again when a new male prisoner takes an interest in her and the self-proclaimed Rebel Queen is captured and brought to the prison. Can she survive the four elemental trials, all while a mysterious new illness runs rampant among the prisoners? 

Afraid by The Neighbourhood: “When I wake up, I’m afraid / Somebody else might take my place / When I wake up, I’m afraid / Somebody else might take my place / Make that money, fake that bunny, ache my tummy / On the fence, all the time”

illicit affairs by Taylor Swift: “Make sure nobody sees you leave / Hood over your head, keep your eyes done / Tell your friends you’re out for a run / you’ll be flushed when you return / take the roads less traveled by / tell yourself you can always stop” 

Pray (Empty Gun) by Bishop Briggs: “Truth is like a loaded gun / You don’t want to point that thing round here / Make all of your skeletons appear / This is real life / And you’ve been living fictional / I don’t want to hurt your heart, my dear / But if I got to cut you, oh I will”

I Felt Free by Circa Survive: “If I could tell the truth / I could make you stay / But forever seems so far away / I fell apart in your arms / For the last time / And I felt free to do what I want / Because of the things you told me”

You Get Me So High by The Neighbourhood: “Hope you don’t regret is / I pushed a lot back but I can’t forget it / We never go the credit / Nobody seemed to hear us, but we said it / Neither of us said it / Neither of us planned it / And for a long time I took it all for granted / I really thought we had it / But at the same time it was more than I could manage”

Check out our review of The Prison Healer here!

Made in Korea by Sarah Suk

Valerie and Charlie’s K-beauty enterprise is the longest-lasting and most successful student business in Crescent Brook High history. In comes Wes Jung, who upsets everything: high school popularity, Valerie’s business, and her one-track mind from her business goals to a certain bespectacled boy. These two make big decisions about college, family, and relationships as they go from enemies to lovers. 

In Your Eyes (Remix) by The Weeknd ft. Doja Cat: “Love the way you’re talkin’, love your style, but, ooh, babe / We know that you got it from me / And it’s haunting you deep, too hard not to see it / Hate the way I feel love, only hurts with real love / And it’s taking every part of me, when you look, I could see love”

I Think He Knows by Taylor Swift: “Wanna see what’s under that attitude like / I want you, bless my soul / And I ain’t gotta tell him, I think he knows / I think he knows”

Easily by Bruno Major: “Don’t you tell me that it wasn’t meant to be / Call it quits or call it destiny / Just because it won’t come, easily? Doesn’t mean, we shouldn’t try / We had a good thing goin’ lately / Might not have always been a fairytale / But you know, and I know / That they ain’t real / I’ll take the truth over the story”

Seventeen by Sjowgren: “If you want a second to breathe / I’ll give you all of my love / I’ll give you all that you need / Don’t worry / I’m not in a hurry / Not going nowhere / I’m not going nowhere”

Electric Feel by Henry Green: “This is what the world is for / Making electricity / You can feel it in your mind / Oh you can feel it all the time / Plug it in and change the world / You’re my electric girl”

Check out our review of Made in Korea here!

Ophelia After All by Racquel Marie

Ophelia Rojas has always been sure of who she is and what she likes: a hopeless romantic who loves her rose garden, Cuban food, and crushing on boys. But everything Ophelia thought she knew about herself gets turned on its head when she starts to develop feelings for Talia Sanchez, the cute girl from her government class. As she deals with the pressures of trying to rediscover herself, everything else in her life starts to fall apart. Can Ophelia find out who she really is and put the pieces of her life back together before it’s too late?

Crush by Tessa Violet: “And I’m just tryna play it cool now / But that’s not what I wanna do now / And I’m not tryna be with you now, you now / But I could be your crush, like, throw you for a rush”

Growing Pains by Alessia Cara: “Can’t find pieces of my peace of mind / I cry more than I want to admit / But I can’t lie to myself, to anyone / ‘Cause phoning it in isn’t any fun”

Roses/Lotus/Violet/Iris by Hayley Williams: “I myself was a wilted woman / Drowsy in a dark room / Forgot my roots / Now watch me bloom”

She by Dodie: “And I’ll be okay admiring her from afar / ‘Cause even when she’s next to me / We could not be more far apart”

Until the Light by Lights: “There’s a fire in your eyes / It’s hard to say what I know / Or leave when I don’t wanna go / ‘Cause every time a piece of me dies”

Check out our review of Ophelia After All here!

Happily Ever Afters by Elise Bryant

After moving to a new town with her family, teenage romance-writer Tessa Johnson gets accepted into the creative writing program of a prestigious art school. But on her first day at her new school, Tessa finds that the words that once came so easily to her are now gone. Her best friend from back home, Caroline, determines that in order to get her writing groove back, Tessa just needs to find her very own, real-life story. With her sights set on Nico, the cute guy in one of her creative writing classes, Tessa is determined to get her love story and her writing groove back. However, things don’t always go according to plan, and Tessa finds herself questioning if Nico is really who she’s meant to find her happily ever after with.

Black Butterflies and Déjà Vu by The Maine: “I lose my voice when I look at you / Can’t make a noise though I’m trying to / Tell you all the right words / Waiting on the right words”

Easy Money by Lights: “Tell me, would you put your money on me? / Count it — one, two, three / Both of us are trouble with a capital “T” / But you’re safe with me / I wanna know baby, would you count on me? / Cause I’d bet on you, baby, that’s easy money”

Franklin by Paramore: “‘Cause you remind me of a time when we were so alive / Everything has changed / Do you remember that? / Do you remember that?”

Ready by Alessia Cara: “I wanna climb into your mind and turn all the lights / Read all your secrets, see if you wonder about mine / We’re just kids tryin’ to understand the world / You’re still only a boy who’s scared of a good girl”

Trip by Ella Mai: “Maybe it’s your love, it’s too good to be true / Baby boy, your love, got me trippin’ on you / You know your love is big enough, make me trip up on you / Yeah, it’s big enough, got me trippin’ on you”

Listen to our podcast episode on Happily Ever Afters here!

Turtles All The Way Down by John Green

When the wealthy Russell Pickett goes missing and a reward for any information on his whereabouts is announced, sixteen-year-old Aza Holmes gets pulled into a wild search for him at the behest of Daisy, her adventurous and Star Wars obsessed best friend. Daisy is convinced that Aza is the key to finding Russell since she used to be friends with his eldest son, Davis. As the two best friends try to find Russell, Aza finds herself growing closer with Davis. But as her feelings for Davis grow stronger, so do her anxiety, compulsive behavior, and intrusive thoughts, until everything in her life starts to come apart at the seams.

Anxiety in Real Time by The Maine: “It’s the same afraid I’ve felt before / I’m afraid how far this far will go / Either way I’ve felt this all before / Yeah, I know (I know) / This is all in my head”

Beside Myself by Lights: “Body is aching / Dreaming and waking / Don’t leave me waiting / Don’t leave me here / Beside myself”

Box in the Ocean by Alessia Cara: “I might be too weak to fall in love / And I might be too much for everyone / All these explosive emotions I’m holdin’ / But you’ll never know ‘em, ‘cause I put ‘em in a box in the ocean”

Caught in the Middle by Paramore: “I’m just a little bit caught in the middle / I try to keep going but it’s not that simple / I think I’m a little bit caught in the middle / I gotta keep going or they’ll call me a quitter / Yeah I’m caught in the middle”

Cemetery by Coin: “Never made time for the family / But he is the richest man in the cemetery / Only made time for the company / But he is the richest man in the cemetery”

What would your YA book playlist look like? Let us know in the comments below!

PRR Writers Sadie Cruz & Adrianna Muñoz