Spotlight: Kasie West

Hey guys! We’re going to highlight another YA author this time, one that cranks out quite a few books in a short amount of time.

Most Popular Titles: The Distance Between Us, The Fill-In Boyfriend, On the Fence, P.S. I Like You

Debut Novel: Pivot Point (2013)

Most Recent Release: Moment of Truth (2020), with Sunkissed set to release in May 2021

Kasie West is an author that I think gets short-changed because she does write almost exclusively romance in books targeted to girls. I think with the covers of her books (which almost never show anyone’s full face), I believe most people look at them and go, “Oh great, another YA romance for hopelessly romantic girls.”

And like…yeah. They’re adorable. That’s the point. Go take your hate somewhere else.

What’s fascinating about her is that her debut novel, Pivot Point, is actually a sci-fi about parallel universes. Like yeah, there’s a love story (there’s always a love story), but it’s predominantly about the sci-fi. It’s so different from what she’s known for that I had a hard time believing this was the same Kasie West when I found it. So she’s actually very versatile as far as what she can write–she chooses to write these love stories. That’s her niche. And more often than not, she crafts a really good story. (There have been very few I’ve disliked.)

I mentioned at the top that she cranks out a lot of books in a short time and she totally does. For a while there, she had 2-3 books coming out in a single year. That’s insane. I’ve only seen one other author with those kinds of numbers–and we’ll talk about her soon too.

West’s characters are generally unique and interesting in some way. A lot of them, if they have jobs, tend to work very weird jobs, from working in a doll store to a local florist. They’re not your typical fast food chain jobs or anything like that. And if their job isn’t unusual, their circumstance is. One of my favorites is about a girl accidentally gets locked in the library for the weekend. (Hello, that would be a dream come true.) Or a guy and girl who “pass notes” by writing on the same desk in chemistry class. So things are always just a little left of normal and that’s what makes them fun and memorable.

My First West Read: The Distance Between Us. It’s actually her first straight up YA contemporary romance too. What was really cool about this one was how it looked at social class issues, as well as giving Caymen a wickedly dry sense of humor. I have been told before that I have a dry sense of humor and I really related to Caymen being told that she isn’t funny or they don’t get the joke. So it was a fascinating mix of characters and circumstances.

Her Complete Collection:

  • Pivot Point (2013)
  • The Distance Between Us (2013)
  • Split Second (Pivot Point, #2) (2014)
  • On the Fence (2014)
  • The Fill-In Boyfriend (2015)
  • P.S. I Like You (2016)
  • By Your Side (2017)
  • Lucky in Love (2017)
  • Love, Life, and the List (2017)
  • Listen to Your Heart (2018)
  • Fame, Fate, and the First Kiss (2019)
  • Maybe This Time (2019)
  • Moment of Truth (2020)
  • Sunkissed (coming May 2021)

I’ve read all but three of them! Have you read all of West’s books? Which one is your favorite?

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