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#119896 - Mon Jul 15 2002 10:02 PM Best Teen Literature
Mysterious_Misty Offline

Registered: Fri Jan 25 2002
Posts: 293
Well, since xaosdog asked for help compiling a list of books for his site, I guess that means I can too!

Lately I've been trying to come up with a list of approximately 15 titles that I can review and post on my website. I'm then planning, (hopefully) to allow a voting process and rank them according to the results.

This is not based on what an adult thinks of a preteen/teen novel, but what the kid thinks, so be sure that if you suggest something it was a childhood favorite, or highly reccomended to you by a kid.

Unfortunately, this list is not going to include science fiction, nonfiction that isn't in the form of a biography/autobiography, or books included in a series. As far as ghost stories go, they're kind of iffy. I currently have one story, (my all-time favorite,) that could be considered a ghost story, but it's truly a work of art, and teens obviously like it; I've lent it out so much the poor thing's practically ripped to shreds!

I plan on reading any books mentioned that I haven't heard of, (I'm 13 by the way) so please limit your suggestions to the very best Ask your kids, grandkids, nieces, nephews, neighbors...can't wait to hear from you!
"It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets." -- Voltaire

#119897 - Tue Jul 16 2002 04:06 AM Re: Best Teen Literature
loveoflearning Offline

Registered: Sun Jun 23 2002
Posts: 370
Loc: Buffalo New York USA   
How about the Lurlene McDaniel books?

#119898 - Tue Jul 16 2002 06:52 AM Re: Best Teen Literature
radioderv Offline
Forum Adept

Registered: Mon Jul 15 2002
Posts: 124
Loc: Ireland
Any of the Judy Blume books, in particular Tiger Eyes or Deenie.
The present is a foreign country

#119899 - Tue Jul 16 2002 01:15 PM Re: Best Teen Literature
thejazzkickazz Offline

Registered: Fri Apr 14 2000
Posts: 3232
Loc: Utah USA
If I had a teenager, I would be sure that he/she would read these: Tom Sawyer, Huck Finn, Of Mice and Men, Grapes of Wrath, To Kill a Mockingbird, Lord of the Flies, Great Expectations, Pride and Prejudice, Robinson Crusoe, any Shakespeare, Little Women, Iliad/Odyssey, Things Fall Apart, 100 Years of Solitude, Crime and Punishment, Anna Karenina...and so many more, too many to mention. How much time have you got?

#119900 - Tue Jul 16 2002 05:11 PM Re: Best Teen Literature
Dobrov Offline

Registered: Sun Dec 02 2001
Posts: 265
Loc: Hradec Kralove Czech Republic
anything by Geoffrey Trease or Lorna Hill

#119901 - Wed Jul 17 2002 04:53 PM Re: Best Teen Literature
SillyLily Offline

Registered: Wed Mar 06 2002
Posts: 587
Loc: Tennessee USA
I absolutely love Jenny Carroll and Sarah Dessen books. They're by far the best authors of young adult fiction.
[i]"Suppose I kept on singing love songs just to break my own fall."[i]

#119902 - Thu Jul 18 2002 06:37 PM Re: Best Teen Literature
wrenaz Offline

Registered: Tue Jul 09 2002
Posts: 48
Loc: Missing Mile, NC
When I was a kid, I loved Susan Cooper and Judy Blume. Annette Curtis Klause is also a really great writer.

I forgot one. I wore out my copy of Alice In Wonderland. I loved Lewis Carroll.

Edited by wrenaz (Thu Jul 18 2002 06:40 PM)
------------------ "Bolder than Paradise and longer than Goodbye..."--Shannon McNally

#119903 - Fri Jul 19 2002 02:24 PM Re: Best Teen Literature
CellarDoor Offline

Registered: Sat Feb 12 2000
Posts: 4894
Loc: Seattle<br>  Washington USA...
It's a pity you don't want to include science fiction: Orson Scott Card's Ender's Game was the defining book of my teenagedom, and most of my high school friends took it to heart as well. In college I find it's a rare person who hasn't read it ... it's really a stunner. Remember, science fiction doesn't have to be about science ... it can also just use science or the future as a tool to say something about being human, in this case coming of age.

If we're excluding Ender's Game it's harder for me to think of one ... Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison also affected me. So did Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God. Those aren't stereotypical "teen books", I guess, but they're what my friends and I read and loved.
Just because there's twilight doesn't mean we can't tell the difference between night and day

#119904 - Sat Jul 20 2002 04:43 AM Re: Best Teen Literature
Bruyere Offline
Star Poster

Registered: Sat Feb 10 2001
Posts: 18712
Loc: California USA
Funny you're not including science fiction as teens respond to that in particular. I myself was an avid fan and in fact we had the opportunity to have the first sf course in my high school. We studied "Brave New World" and "1984" and other milestones. We also wrote sf stories.
I was an avid reader as a teen, and I think we read a lot of stuff that wasn't normally considered teen lit. Siddartha by Herman Hesse. We'd pass around books like that.

Now as I have two teens, or one pre teen but who reads a lot, I have to say that Harry Potter is top on the list. Even I read it. My son is ten and is trying to get into LOR but it's not "taking". HP is tops.
Otherwise Roald Dahl.
We had a few Goosebumps at one point but it didn't last.
I personally buy most anything they want to read.
I was born under a wandering star.

#119905 - Sun Jul 21 2002 03:44 PM Re: Best Teen Literature
Teallach Offline

Registered: Tue Feb 19 2002
Posts: 261
Loc: Scottish Highlands
Philip Pullman is very popular with teens here, especially girls.I think his books are a bit on the 'dark side' but the bookstores are full of them and they sell like hotcakes.

Edited by Teallach (Tue Aug 13 2002 03:09 PM)

#119906 - Sun Jul 21 2002 07:26 PM Re: Best Teen Literature
nightrider1985 Offline
Learning the ropes...

Registered: Fri Jul 19 2002
Posts: 4
Loc: Eganville, Ontario, Canada
I agree with these books : L;ittle Women, Of Mice and Men, To Kill A Mockingbird and Lord of the Flies. They are great books. (I am 16)

#119907 - Mon Jul 22 2002 10:25 AM Re: Best Teen Literature
LilSpikey Offline

Registered: Sun Dec 02 2001
Posts: 581
Loc: North Carolina USA
Anything by Lois Duncan or Joan Lowry Nixon. They both write teen suspense novels.
"But maybe it's not too learn how to love, and forget how to hate."

#119908 - Mon Jul 22 2002 10:53 AM Re: Best Teen Literature
moonchild Offline

Registered: Mon May 13 2002
Posts: 242
Loc: london
Well now,when I was a thirteen, all the girls in my class were reading Paula Danziger or Enid Blyton - sure, not really a teen read but they still got you to read way past your bed time so that you could finish them!!
Many Catnips....

#119909 - Mon Aug 12 2002 01:50 AM Re: Best Teen Literature
mandelbrotset Offline

Registered: Sun Aug 11 2002
Posts: 230
Loc: Riverside Chicago Illinois USA
I'd like to see your website when your list is compiled. I have a 13 year old daughter and I'm looking for good books for her to read. My tastes ran toward science fiction when I was her age, and like you, she doesn't care for it.

One of the non-sci-fi books that I read as a young teenager (and my older daughter, now 21 also read and enjoyed) was "Tituba of Salem Village" by Ann Petry. This is a story based on the Salem witchcraft hysteria in the 1600's.

Lewis Carroll's "Alice in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass and what Alice Found There" were also favorites.
"Patterns are set in one place and time, to be followed to the end of all years to come". (Andre Norton)

#119910 - Mon Aug 12 2002 06:52 AM Re: Best Teen Literature
Polygon Offline

Registered: Tue Jul 23 2002
Posts: 45
Loc: Belgium
Holes (L. Sachar)
The Giver (L. Lowry)
So Much to Tell You (J. Marsden)

I don't really know about kids in general, but my pupils, loved these books. I teach English in Belgium and I use English teen fiction to get them reading. They are slightly older than the intended readers, but they really enjoyed them (as did I).

#119911 - Mon Aug 12 2002 07:33 AM Re: Best Teen Literature
Mysterious_Misty Offline

Registered: Fri Jan 25 2002
Posts: 293
Thanks for the suggestions everyone Right now I'm actually redesigning my entire website...(what a nightmare) but I'll definitely be using your ideas in the future.

I might do a separate list for science fiction and short stories, but right now I just want to concentrate on all of the other fiction books out there. Thanks again!
"It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets." -- Voltaire

#119912 - Sun Sep 08 2002 08:53 PM Re: Best Teen Literature
zellibelly929 Offline

Registered: Tue Jun 18 2002
Posts: 11
I think that the best teen literature would have to be:
The Baby-Sitters Club books: I know they're targeted at kids and pre-teens, but you don't fully grasp the meaning of the books til you're the baby-sitters' ages, which is thirteen. The Baby-Sitters' go to exciting places like Europe and Disneyland, and have all kinds of parties-slumber, costume, surprise, Halloween, etc. which kind of made me feel sad, because my life wasn't half as exciting as their's were, but it's still good to read.

Like Sillylily suggested before, Sarah Dessen books are good. I recommend 'That Summer' and 'Someone Like You'. They're funny and have morals in them. In fact, the books are so popular that they're making a movie of it, called 'How To Deal' starring Mandy Moore, based on those two books.

Ella Enchanted-It's the classic Cinderella story with funny twists such as a much more spunky heroine who has an obedience spell cast on her, set in a world with ogres and unicorns.

The Giver-It gives teenagers a provocative look at a futuristic society. My opinion is that our society kind of mirrors theirs'.
In fact, people of the past might think of our society the way we look at the society in the giver. Basically, the plot of the book is that a boy named Jonas lives in a society where choice is not an option, and tries to break the mold.

Jennifer Murdley's Toad-by Bruce Corville. An ugly girl learns the hard way that beauty is only skin-deep through a talking toad with attitude problems. And since our society is so focused on looks, this book teaches teen girls the same time as Jennifer Murdley that beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

Little Women-About four sisters growing up in Civil War-era New England, who face trials and tribulations together. It's a really touching story. It is definitely on the long side, but it's worth it. Gets better each time you read it.

The 'Dear America' and 'Royal Diaries' series-In the 'Dear America' series, you see moments in American history through the eyes of a pre-teen or teen, such as the Revolutionary War, the sinking of the Titanic, the Great Depression, slavery, etc. In the 'Royal Diaries' series, you read fictional diaries written from the view point of future queens, and princesses, such as Queen Victoria, Cleopatra, Nzingha, Anastasia, and etc.

#119913 - Mon Sep 09 2002 08:08 PM Re: Best Teen Literature
shishkakat Offline
Forum Adept

Registered: Sat Aug 31 2002
Posts: 139
Loc: Montana, USA
Since I am I teen I think that this is right up my alley!

I must disagree with The Baby-Sitters Club. As you get older you discover that those girls didn't act thirteen. More along the lines of sixteen. I don't recommend them for teen reading.

Now,To Kill A Mockingbird is a must have. I read it over the summer, (it's my current favorite book!) and now we're reading it in my freshman English. My friend is thoroughly enjoying it. But if you post this, please note that it is more for kids with an extensive vocabulary. I catch on to things in the books, but some of my classmates are having difficulties...

I fully recomend anything by Lois Lowry. Especially Number The Stars. It has a low reading level, true, but the whole concept is absolutely wonderful. I have to admit that I didn't grasp the whole idea until last year, whe I had read it numerous times before.

Too bad you aren't including sci fi. Harry Potter is so glorious.

"They'll have to write their own letters" ~ Ben Affleck, Changing Lanes

#119914 - Fri Oct 04 2002 02:23 AM Re: Best Teen Literature
shadowhippie Offline
Forum Adept

Registered: Fri Sep 20 2002
Posts: 190
Loc: Texas USA
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeline L'Engle, Sophie's World: A Novel About the History of Philosophy
by Gaarder and Moller, The Diary of Anne Frank, The Grapes of Wrath, Farenheit 451, The Chronicles of Narnia.

~Everything happens for a reason~

#119915 - Thu Nov 14 2002 12:39 PM Re: Best Teen Literature
zelda Offline

Registered: Thu Nov 14 2002
Posts: 46
Loc: Earth
I recommend The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton. It was an amazing book and I loved it. John Knowles's A Separate Peace was a fascinating read too.
In order to be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid.

#119916 - Thu Nov 14 2002 06:47 PM Re: Best Teen Literature
Moo Offline
Forum Champion

Registered: Thu Mar 21 2002
Posts: 8275
Loc: at the computer
I wholeheartedly agree with The Outsiders! When I was a teen I loved it so much that I wore my copy out. I still read it about once a year!

Also, Judy Blume is great for teens. Tiger Eyes is wonderful. Are You There God, It's Me, Margaret was my favorite book from when I was 11 until I was about 13.

Of course, the classics - Little Women, 1984, Of Mice and Men etc. They have all been mentioned, but I just want to put in my vote for them, because they are all wonderful.

It could be that if you get enough suggestions, you could possibly change the list every few months. That way teens can check in from time to time for new suggestions of great books.
[color:"purple"]"Buy a jumbo jet
And then bury all your clothes
Paint your left knee green
Then extract your wisdom teeth." [/color]

#119917 - Sun Feb 16 2003 02:43 PM Re: Best Teen Literature
janefan Offline
Forum Adept

Registered: Sat Feb 15 2003
Posts: 104
I am a 9th grade girl and these are my favorite books: Anything by L.M. Montgomery, author of "Anne of Green Gables" series, anything by Jane Austen, especially "Sense and Sensibility"; "Gone With the Wind," "To Kill a Mockingbird", ALL of Agatha Christie's books, "Stepping Heavenward" by Elizabeth Prentiss, "Jane Eyre," "Little Women," "The BFG", by Roald Dahl, "Rebecca", and I like several of Poe's works. Of course, the list goes on, this is just a part, as I love to read. As for Judy Blume, an author I saw several people mention, her books are a bit elementary for a teen-ager.

#119918 - Mon Feb 17 2003 07:12 PM Re: Best Teen Literature
pjbeliever13 Offline

Registered: Sat Sep 21 2002
Posts: 79
Loc: CT, USA
The Cage - Ruth Minsky Sender (i think)

that's about a girl reliving her holocaust experience and how hope helped her to survive. A great book, geared towards youth. I loved it.

Steppenwolfe- Hermann Hesse-

This really isn't a teen book, but I just read it and I'm a teen so... lol. Anyways, I can't do justice for this book so I won't try. It's brilliant, changed my way of thinking. i reccommend it strongly if you like challenging reading.
::Dreaming in Technicolor:: "Most people are subjective toward themselves and objective toward all others, frightfully objective sometimes--but the task is precisely to be objective toward oneself and subjective toward all others."

#119919 - Sat May 17 2003 09:41 PM Re: Best Teen Literature
jaZZyhoBBit Offline
Learning the ropes...

Registered: Sat May 17 2003
Posts: 2
Loc: CA
I hate all the sorts of books they make you read in school (i'm in seventh grade). I'm slightly addicted to fantasy (which is mostly series). But if you're going to post a sci-fi/fantasy "series" list, "the banned and the banished", LOTR, "the wheel of time", and "the mists of avalon" are all good series. I know they're not teen books, but they're all of them really really good.

#119920 - Wed May 21 2003 05:52 PM Re: Best Teen Literature
agony Offline


Registered: Sat Mar 29 2003
Posts: 13493
Loc: Western Canada
I asked my kids (11 and 13, both reading above their grade level) and got these suggestions - Gary Paulson and Will Hobbs for books of outdoor adventure, man against the elements; Tad Williams "Tailchaser's Song" and the trilogy "Memory, Sorrow and Thorn"; Michael and Katherine O'neal Gear's "People of...." books, about pre-historic North America; Agatha Christie; Tarzan of the Apes and King Solomon's Mines for old-fashioned adventure; "Frost wing" by Richard A Knaak; Gabriel King, fantasy; and Carol Mattas' Holocaust books. agony

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