Our Favourite Fictional Romances

Ah, love is in the air, Roomies. The cards are cheesy, the chocolate is on special, and our palms are sweaty. Okay, so maybe Valentine’s Day isn’t for everyone. We don’t know about you, but we’d much rather cheer for the budding romances in a good novel, experience the ups and downs of love through the eyes of a YA protagonist. So, to celebrate Valentine’s Day, we’ve compiled some of our favourite YA romances!


Cristina, Mark, and Kieran from The Dark Artifices

The amount of love between these three characters makes my heart melt. I love how organically each fell for the other two, from Mark and Kieran’s time in Faerie, to Cristina and Kieran’s gradual affection. Cristina is definitely the glue between them (she’s described as the piece Mark and Kieran were missing – swoon) and her kind and caring nature makes this polyamorous relationship incredibly wholesome and honest. And the boys are good fun, too!

Jackson and Tomas from The Boy From the Mish

Speaking of wholesome relationships, how can I go past the main characters in this recent release? Set over just a week or so, Jackson and Tomas explore their new relationship – learning about themselves in the process – in such a raw and honest way that you’ll be transported straight back to your own first love. I was left feeling so warm and fluffy at the happiness the boys found.

Jaron and Imogen from The Ascendance Trilogy

While you don’t actually see a lot of physical affection between Jaron and Imogen, their love for each other is incredibly strong and it’s evident in everything they do. What I love most about this pairing is how slowly but surely their relationship formed, and how deeply they care for each other, even as just friends in the beginning. Sometimes it’s nice to see a pairing’s love beyond all the physical stuff, y’know? I also love how Imogen doesn’t put up with Jaron’s crap – she’ll call him out on it, and trust me, he needs that.

Gansey and Blue from The Raven Cycle

Is there anything more romantic than not being able to kiss your true love because, if you do, he’ll die? Well, this is the small damper over Blue and Gansey’s relationship. But for a long time, it doesn’t matter, because Blue has no plans of falling in love – at first. Despite their initial dislike for each other, Blue and Gansey get to know each other over the course of four books, seeing the real version of the other and falling head over heels. I love it so much. Shame about the kiss and die thing, though. (I also can’t go past Adam and Ronan’s relationship, and I hope we see more of them in the next installment of Call Down the Hawk!)


Nishat and Flávia from The Henna Wars

There’s nothing I love more than the rivals-to-lovers trope, so these two queer girls quickly won over my heart! When Nishat’s childhood friend comes back into her life and starts at her high school, she falls hard and fast. But then her teacher announces a business project, and suddenly the pair find themselves in competition. While the rivalry had me second-guessing whether these two girls would end up together, their eventual romance had me feeling all gooey inside. It was just adorable! I’m so excited to pick up Adiba Jaigirdar’s next book.

Nick and Charlie from Heartstopper

Alice Oseman owns my heart. Full stop. She’s my favourite author of all time, and Nick and Charlie are just the cutest. Plus, we’re getting a TV show adaptation real soon with these two cuties! Heartstopper is such an incredible coming-of-age graphic novel that you’ll fall in love with as soon as you start reading. It also tackles some tough topics, like bullying and mental illness, but that doesn’t serve as a hinderance to the adorable romance that just leaps off the page. If anything, it gives their relationship more depth and authenticity.

Gabby and Jordi from The Summer of Jordi Perez

This book is just so much fun! It follows the life of Abby, who’s interning at her favourite boutique store. But when she finds out the other intern she’s crushing on is in competition with her to win the job at the end of their placement, the two become reluctant rivals. This is all set against the backdrop of the vibrant L.A., which almost serves as an additional character in the story. It’s such a fun, heartwarming story about body positivity, burgers, and summer love. Can’t recommend it enough!

Alex and Henry from Red, White & Royal Blue

If you haven’t had the chance to read Red, White & Royal Blue yet, AKA the book everyone’s constantly raving about, you have to add it to your TBR! It’s hilarious and heartfelt, and it will make you want to stay up way past your bedtime reading about these two hopeless boys. If you’re a fan of the enemies-to-lovers trope, then you’re in luck! Alex and Henry are sure to melt your heart in this hilarious, sometimes-steamy New Adult novel.

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Who are some of your favourite fictional romances? Which YA character did you spend Valentine’s Day with? We’d love to know, tell us all about it! However you celebrate – or if you celebrate at all – we hope you had a wonderful day!

A Month of #LoveOzYA Goodness

Next month, we’re celebrating all things #LoveOzYA! As The YA Room is coming up to its first birthday, we want to spread the love for the community that welcomed us with open arms. Twelve months ago, The YA Room was just a hopeful experiment, created by two girls that met at a book launch and share the same passion for reading. We both wanted to create a space for Melbourne YA book lovers to come together on a monthly basis and talk books.

As everyone in the #LoveOzYA community helped to spread the word, we went from being a book club with less than ten people at a couple of our initial Book Meets, to hosting Q&As with authors at the Wheeler Centre. We know that The YA Room will only continue to grow, and we have the #LoveOzYA community to thank for that. The authors, bloggers, readers, and industry professionals who come together to form this community are the most welcoming, kind, and passionate people we’ve ever come across, and we’re eternally grateful for all of you. We wouldn’t exist without you.

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We know that next year will be an even bigger and better year, and we’re excited to plan more Book Meets, host some bigger events, and continue to spread the love of YA. But we want to finish off the year with a bang. So in December, please join us in celebrating all things #LoveOzYA by participating in our Bingo Challenge and sharing the content that Aussie bloggers, authors, and booktubers, will be contributing to our blog and YouTube channel across December.

Towards the end of this month, we’ll be releasing the schedule for all the #LoveOzYA content that we’ll be sharing across our various social media platforms. We have so many exciting contributors, and we’re so grateful to everyone who’s pitching in. In conjunction with these amazing Aussie content creators, we’re going to be sharing our favourite #LoveOzYA novels, what the #LoveOzYA community means to us, and what upcoming releases we’re most looking forward to.

We’d like you to take this time in December to think about the impact the #LoveOzYA community has had on you and what your favourite #LoveOzYA novels are, and we’d love to see you sharing your thoughts across social media. Remember to tag us so we can share your insights!

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But what’s undeniably going to be the most fun aspect of our month of #LoveOzYA goodness is the #LoveOzYA Bingo Challenge we’ve created! This is the first bingo challenge we’ve made, and we hope you’ll get involved. Plus, there are some epic prizes to be won! Scroll down to learn more.Read More »

April Wrap-Up // THINGS IN MAY

Hi everyone! Wow, it’s hard to believe yet another month has passed! April was a busy month for us, as always, and we’re so excited for what this month will hold!

As you may recall, at the beginning of April we had our Autumn Picnic! Even though it was rainy, we still had a lovely time indoors, feasting on all the snacks everyone brought and chatting about what we’ve been reading recently! I don’t know about you, but picnics are one of our favourite things to host. We’re already planning our next informal get together!

As usual, we hosted our Twitter chat and our Book Meet at Dymocks, where we talked all about our Book of the Month – Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor! Everyone really loved this book, and we’re so pleased we had the opportunity to read it with y’all. Here are some reviews from the people that joined us at our Book Meet!


Strange the Dreamer – Review (spoiler free) on Bec’s Books

The Magnificence that is Strange the Dreamer on The Sprinkled Pages

Book Review: Strange the Dreamer on Read at Midnight

And of course, here’s Sarah and Alex‘s review of Strange the Dreamer.


As April came to a close, we revived our YouTube channel by adding some more content! We’re planning on uploading twice a week, and we’ve already been planning some interviews to share with you soon. Make sure you check out our videos if you haven’t already! We’d love to hit 100 subscribers by the end of the month.

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And finally, we’ve been planning our upcoming Twitter chat and Book Meet for our May Book of the Month – The Upside of Unrequited! If you haven’t already got a copy of this gorgeous book, please do! We can’t wait to chat about it, and we’d love for you to join in. Tickets for our Book Meet will be released shortly, but in the time being, mark it into your calendar! It’s going to be a fun afternoon, as always. We even have a special surprise!

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Talk soon!

Caraval Book Talk WRAP UP!

Yesterday we held our second ever Book Talk – crazy, right? How did that month go so quickly? In case you hadn’t already guessed from the title of this post – and if you weren’t able to make it on the day – we were discussing everything Caraval at our meet up! It was amazing to have so many people there, with familiar faces as well as a few new ones.

For this month’s Book Talk, we were lucky enough to be meeting at Dymocks in the city! It was a fantastic location, and it was so atmospheric to be surrounded by all the books. Not to mention, the cafe below us served excellent food and drink, and it was lovely to be able to order something and munch on it as we talked!

We began the Book Talk by introducing ourselves and what we were currently reading, which is always a fun way to get to know one another, and then gave a quick summary of how we each felt about Caraval if we’d read it. The majority of the who joined us had read Caraval, so it was easy to reference particular scenes and characters, but it was such a fun afternoon even for those who hadn’t had the chance to read it yet!

Soon we began talking about how we felt about specific characters and how we felt about some of the big twists and reveals, as well as discussing more general things such as the relationships between siblings, the overall aesthetic of the book and its layout, and arguing over which edition is the prettiest. Our favourite part was, by far, talking about our favourite lines in the novel. So many feels!


We went around in a circle and discussed how people rated Caraval as whole, and there were mixed reviews, to say the least. The average rating would have to have been around the 3.5 star mark. Lack of character development and world building seemed to be a common criticism among the group. Could it have been all the hype? All our heightened expectations for what was said to be an amazing YA fantasy read?

A few members of the group really enjoyed the story and the way it developed, despite the slow start of the novel. It just goes to show how everyone’s taste in books varies! And that is OKAY!!!

After discussing the rating, we all gushed over the book covers, especially the US hardcover *insert heart eyes emojis* *insert drooling* Although, the UK paperback was the most popular cover of choice, and several ARC copies also floated among the group.

With the cover and rating out of the way, we moved on to our favourite characters and our least, and surprising, the least favourites definitely all of the main characters. Some of the group couldn’t even pick a favourite! “Picking a favourite means I have to have liked them to begin with” one member said, and sadly, many of the members seemed to agree.

As for Sarah and I, Dante and Julian were by far the most engaging and favourable characters.

We talked and talked over coffee and freshly squeezed juice before we had to eventually wrap up another amazingly successful bookclub meeting by introducing our BOTM for March, which is the one and on The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas, which faces the very real and confronting topic of police brutality in the United States.

Starr is only sixteen years old when she witnesses the fatal shooting of her unarmed best friend, Kahlil, by a police officer.

The Hate U Give, THUG for short, is an important and diverse story which demands to be heard. Not only is this book set in a contemporary setting, it faces real issues that many young adults may not be aware of, and we are so grateful to be reading this with you all in March.

Can’t wait to see you all at our next Book Talk!

Our IDA Month Wrap Up!

As you all know, ‘Ida’ – written by Alison Evans – was our very first (of many) BOTM! And as many more of you know, on Sunday the 29th of January, we hosted our very first official book-club meeting in Alexandra Gardens with the one and only, ALISON EVANS! You know? The AUTHOR? OF OUR BOOK OF THE MONTH? ALISON EVaNS?


So naturally, Sarah, being the genius that she is, prepared a few questions for Alison, relating to both the book and themselves, to help fill any awkward silences – AND GUESS WHAT? There weren’t any! Alison very easily answered all of our questions, as well as signing our books and taking photos with us! Author G O A L S !

So let us recap it all for those who couldn’t make it! First off, yes, Alison is amazing, charismatic, humble and very funny! And yes! They have amazing BLUE hair! (also goals tbh)Read More »

WOW… What a month!

January, as it would be expected, has been a month of firsts. And not just in the calendar sense. It was the month we officially launched this amazing thing we’d been planning for months, and it was the month we realised just how exciting this adventure was going to be. We’d always hoped that The YA Room would be a success, for both us and you all, but we never expected to receive the abundance of love and support that we did – so thank you.

We started off the month searching for a venue for our very first Book Talk, which was equally frustrating and relentless, but all our efforts ended up paying off in the end! But even though we didn’t know if or when we would have a proper venue to host our monthly meet-ups at, we still organised not one, but two fun afternoons. Thank goodness the Melbourne weather was on our side.

The first of these meet-ups was our Inaugural Picnic at the Botanic Gardens, where we had twenty gorgeous people show up to support our first event. We sat on the grass and ate food, swapped books, and talked about the novels we loved! We couldn’t have wished for a more spectacular day, and it was the Inaugural Picnic that set the grounds for the rest of the month.

Not long after, we were lucky enough to attend the PTA Showcase in Melbourne, where we heard Shivaun Plozza, Fleur Ferris and Jodi McAlister speak about their new books, as well as hear about all the upcoming Penguin Teen releases! Not only did we get to hang out with all our favourite bookish people again, but there was cake and food and little goodie packages. It was incredible, and we’re already looking forward to the next one!

A few weeks later we had our very first Book Talk, where we were joined by Alison Evans to discuss their new YA novel, Ida. Again, we had such a great turnout and it was amazing to have Alison there too. We asked them some questions about their writing processes, the themes behind Ida, and did a bit of fangirling too.

Here are some of our favourite reviews of Ida, written by the people that are a part of our book club!


Lissa’s Reviews – Ida

I-Dan’t Have Many Complaints // Ida Review (Terrible Pun But Great Book)


You should also totally check out Sarah’s review on her blog, Written Word Worlds. Spoiler: She adored reading Ida!

The same evening as our Book Talk, Caraval by Stephanie Garber was announced our February Book Of The Month, as voted by almost 250 people! We’re looking forward to reading this much-anticipated novel and discussing it at our next Book Talk. We’re also currently figuring out some exciting things that will make our next Book Talk even more phenomenal than the first!


And then yesterday, as if our month couldn’t get any better, we got a very exciting email back from Dymocks! We’re thrilled to announce that our next Book Talk will be held on Sunday 26th February from 2.30 – 4pm at Dymocks 234 Collins Street, in the heart of Melbourne. We hope to see you all there!