I love young adult literature. I’ve always got at least one YA novel on the go (currently, The Frog Princess by E.D. Baker, and about to start Secret Keeper by Mitali Perkins). Traditionally, I’ve celebrated this week by procrastinating all “non-essential” tasks and replacing them with time devoted to reading YA novels. Since I’m still trying to smooth out my life after the move, however, there aren’t many things that feel “nonessential” these days! Still, I couldn’t just let this week pass by unmarked.
Below, in no particular order) are ten of my favorite YA novels (not my top ten, as this list is by no means complete!)
- A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle – A timeless science fiction novel about siblings traveling through time and space to find their father.
- The Realm of Possibility by David Leviathan – A novel in verse that captures dozens of authentic teen voices.
- Flipped by Wendelin Van Draanan – A beautiful coming-of-age novel about seeing beyond assumptions.
- Stargirl by Jerri Spinelli – A reflection on how one out-of-place girl can change the way others see the world forever.
- I Know It’s Over by CK Kelly Martin – The best novel I’ve ever read addressing teen pregnancy, hands down.
- M or F? by Lisa Papademetriou and Chris Tebbetts – A fun retelling of Cyrano de Bergerac in the Internet age–with a queer twist.
- The Uglies Trilogy by Scott Westerfeld – A great sci-fi adventure read, and an even better commentary on our image-obsessed culture.
- The His Dark Materials Trilogy by Phillip Pullman – Beautiful characterization, a fascinating world, and probing questions about science and religion.
- Luna by Julie Anne Peters – A compassionate portrayal of a transgendered teen’s struggle, as seen through the eyes of her sister.
- Please Don’t Kill the Freshman by Zoe Trope – Zoe’s published diary detailing her 9th and 10th grade years–beautiful, crisp writing from a real teen girl.