Today I’m excited to have my pal and writer of some of my FAVORITE books, Morgan Matson, on the blog to help me with a special list inspired by her latest book — Take Me Home Tonight (out today)!!
Take Me Home Tonight is about two friends, their epic plan for sneaking away for a perfect night in NYC and how everything goes ridiculously off plan — all in the span of one night. Given the timeframe of the novel I thought it would be really fun to make a list of YA books that take place in one day — something I REALLY love — with the help of Morgan.
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Ferris Bueller’s Day Off meets Nick and Nora’s Infinite Playlist in this romp through the city that never sleeps from the New York Times bestselling author of Since You’ve Been Gone, Morgan Matson.
Two girls. One night. Zero phones.
Kat and Stevie—best friends, theater kids, polar opposites—have snuck away from the suburbs to spend a night in New York City. They have it all planned out. They’ll see a play, eat at the city’s hottest restaurant, and have the best. Night. Ever. What could go wrong?
Well. Kind of a lot?
They’re barely off the train before they’re dealing with destroyed phones, family drama, and unexpected Pomeranians. Over the next few hours, they’ll have to grapple with old flames, terrible theater, and unhelpful cab drivers. But there are also cute boys to kiss, parties to crash, dry cleaning to deliver (don’t ask), and the world’s best museum to explore.
Over the course of a wild night in the city that never sleeps, both Kat and Stevie will get a wake-up call about their friendship, their choices…and finally discover what they really want for their future.
That is, assuming they can make it to Grand Central before the clock strikes midnight.
Before Morgan and I get to the list, I have to take a second to just acknowledge the fact that, with the release of Take Me Home Tonight, I have been reading Morgan’s books for a decade. A fact that makes me emotional because Morgan’s books are so special to me and I’m thankful to have gotten to know Morgan because of them.
I read Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour and it became one of my favorite YA books ever. Then came Second Chance Summer and I wrote the longest public letter to Morgan after reading that book because it hit such a personal note which solidified her as a favorite author. All these years later — she’s still one of my favorite authors but also one of my favorite humans, too!
Every Morgan Matson book is something to look forward to and I highly recommend you pick up Take Me Home Tonight as well as every single one of her books before that (Since You’ve Been Gone, The Unexpected Everything, Save The Date — plus the two I mentioned above).
Hello, Goodbye And Everything In Between by Jennifer E. Smith
Statistical Probability is the JES all in one day book that gets all the love, but I adore this special gem of a book, as Clare and Aiden, the night before going to college, try and figure out if they should stay together or break up. So real and heartfelt and fun and true – and there’s an upcoming movie!!
We Are the Wildcats by Siobhan Vivian
LOVE this book about a girls’ field hockey team and a night of team bonding that goes off the rails. An examination of ambition and friendship and sports and loyalty – I loved it!
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Somewhere Only We Know by Maurene Goo
Roman Holiday. In Hong Kong. WITH A K POP STAR ARE YOU KIDDING ME? I love this book so much – Lucky’s journey as she begins to question what she wants absolutely swept me away. And Jack is my favorite of MG’s love interests, so charming and cute and cool.
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Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist
The OG kids in NYC, one night book. David and Rachel wrote this sending chapters back and forth, not knowing where it was going, and the book has that kind of amazing, screwball, what’s gonna happen next energy. Such a wild ride.
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Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley
Graffiti Moon is one of my favorite books that takes place in a single day — and honestly one of my very favorite contemporary YA books. This lyrical and gorgeous story is about a girl named Lucy and her friends (and a boy whose nose she broke years ago on a date) and their adventure through the city trying to find the graffiti artist that Lucy has never seen but has fallen in love with his art she sees throughout the city. Read my review of Graffiti Moon.
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I Have Lost My Way by Gayle Forman
Gayle Forman is one of my all time favorite YA authors and I loved this one so much! It follows 3 characters, in the span of a day, who are all kind of feeling lost in their life for various reasons — some which immediately become known and others that get unraveled along the way. Their paths cross and I LOVED watching these strangers make their way towards ones another and connect. I read it at a time I was feeling a bit lost and it really resonated!
Today Tonight Tomorrow by Rachel Lynn Solomon
I actually read this one last year and it was a DELIGHT — highly rec if you love a good romcom with a rivals to romance plot.
Rowan and Neil are two overachievers who have been battling for valedictorian and outdoing one another when it comes to EVERYTHING their entire high school career and the day has finally come — their last day of high school and finding out who wins once and for all.
The day also brings the long-awaited senior game. When the two find out that they are being target in the game, they reluctantly team up to be the last ones standing (so they can battle once more) and spend the next 24 hours together seeing a whole new side to their relationship than the one that has played out all during high school.
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They Both Die At The End by Adam Silvera
This book is incredible! Truly, very thought-provoking and different taking place in 24 hours.
What if you got a heads up on the day that you would die? You wouldn’t know the moment but you’d know today was the day. That’s the premise in the alternate this book is set in. Two teen boys both get the call that today is their End Day, and in their quest to make a friend for their last day, they join an app for that and are brought together to have the Last Day of a lifetime. Check out my thoughts on They Both Die At The End and all the ways it made me think.
The one way I tackle my never-ending list of books to read:
AUDIOBOOKS! I don’t know what I would do without audiobooks and often spend time listening throughout my day. My audiobook service of choice is LibroFM — not only does your subscription benefit independent bookshops but it’s truly a service fueled by book lovers. Get 2 audiobooks for the price of 1.
The Statistical Probability of Love At First Sight
As Morgan said above, this one is a beloved “set in one day” book and for good reason. Sweet and swoony as well as the fact most of it takes place on a plane. If you love a good meet cute, check this one out!
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This Is All Your Fault by Aminah Mae Safi
Empire Records but make it books! This one is about a ragtag group of teens who work at a bookstore, find out that it is closing and decide they need to save the bookstore — all in 24 hours.
What are your favorite “set in one day” novels? Have you read any of these?
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