Since Top Ten Tuesday is Freebie Week I’m going to go back to last week’s topic (I know, how original) because I was REALLY excited about it but didn’t get a chance to do it since my niece was born the night before! YAY.
As readers of my blog know, I’m a reader of both YA fiction of all genres, Adult fiction of all genres and even non-fiction! So anytime I can try and persuade people to try books out of their comfort zone, I’m all over it. I’m not saying, “Hey..you need to read YA all the time!!”…really what I’m saying is..if you want to give YA and are looking for really great quality young adult..then here are some of my favorites that I’d recommend to get you started!
1. Between Shades Of Gray by Ruta Septyus: I can’t recommend this one enough. It’s set during Stalin’s reign and chronicles a young girl and her family’s life as it gets uprooted by Stalin’s forces coming into their home country of Lithuania. It’s heartbreaking, written beautifully and sheds light on a part of history that I never really knew about. Really great as an audiobook! I recently recommended this to a friend who reads mostly adult fiction and she LOVED this one!
2. Sloppy Firsts by Megan McCafferty: I’m confused as to whether this is considered YA or adult fiction BUT I’ve seen it mostly labeled as adult fiction in stores. Either way, it’s FABULOUS and HILARIOUS and so perfectly captures what it is to be a teen without being overwritten or dramatic. I found myself, at 25 when I read this, relating so perfectly and recalling so many similar feelings or situations that Jessica Darling found herself in. And by the way, Jessica Darling is one of THE most memorable characters I’ve ever come across!
3. Please Ignore Vera Dietz by AS King: AS King’s books are just so smart and well written and very emotional! Please Ignore Vera Dietz was such a good, powerful book and I’m excited to read her latest book!
4. Paper Towns by John Green: I just finished this a week or two ago and OH MY GOODNESS. I have to write my review still but this book is one of my new all time favorites. It’s funny, smart and reminds me of why I love reading! The characters are great and there were so many pages that I just wanted to highlight or dog ear or blow up and put as huge posters on my room.
5. If I Stay & Where She Went by Gayle Forman: Oh my goodness. I can’t even put into words what I feel about these books. I bawled through If I Stay and did my fair share of crying through Where She Went. It’s not overwrought in emotion but really does shake something in your core with this story.
6. The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater: I recently posted by review of The Scorpio Races and was pretty honest about that I LIKED it but didn’t LOVE it like so many people did but also mentioning that there was so much about it that was strong. I guess I just didn’t connect with the characters and my state of mind at the time probably hindered my ability to concentrate on really descriptive and lush prose (which I love typically but just couldn’t connect with in this case). All that aside, I would still really recommend this to a lot of people because Maggie’s a hell of a writer and there was SO much good about this book despite my inability to get into it as much as I would have liked! This is also why I don’t do star ratings..too complicated to give a star to capture my feelings.
7. The Book Thief by Markus Zusack: One of my all time favorite books! Apparently in Australia, where it was originally published, it was labeled as adult fiction but here it seems to be labeled as teen here in the US. Either way, this is one of those books I’ve made everyone I know read and everyone raves about it and says how memorable it is. The narrator is DEATH. Right there…doesn’t that sound memorable?! But seriously..this book is phenomenal and I know so many people who don’t typically read YA and loved this book!
8. The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins: If you like a thrilling series that is a dystopian and seriously hard to put down, try this one! I really grew to love the characters in this one and I was just so engrossed in the world and the politics of it all. I’ve gotten some of my friends who read sporadically to give this one a try and they loved it!
9. Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson: When I think of YA greats, Laurie Halse Anderson is at the top. Speak was a powerful book that opens up quite the dialogue for teens and adults to have with each other. Highly recommended!
10. You Are My Only by Beth Kephart: This book really surprised me! It alternates between a mom whose child was kidnapped and the child who was kidnapped, as a young teen, who has no idea she was kidnapped. It was quick read but quite engrossing and I love Kephart’s style!
What books do YOU recommend to readers who shy away from YA? I also plan on doing a post about adult books that teens/readers of YA should read!