Tuesday, 19 July 2011

My Top Ten Books that should be Required Reading for Teens

Thanks to SisterSpooky I have just discovered the Broke and the Bookish Top Ten Tuesday, and this week their top ten is of required reading for teens - what better for me to jump in on?!

I thought I'd give it a go but realised it is harder than it sounds, I have hundreds of books that I recommend to different teenagers for different reasons, depending on reading age/maturity/likes/dislikes.  I struggled to whittle it down to 10 but I like to think there's something here for everyone. I guess 'required reading' could be interpreted to mean 'worthy' books, but I like to think that reading for pleasure is reason enough...so here, in no particular order, are 10 that I have read and would blanket recommend to 13-18year olds...
  1. 1984 by George Orwell- a classic novel but still horribly believable future!  Even though it was written in 1948, before we used the internet daily, it is still relevant and will really make them think about censorship and government.
  2. Hero by Perry Moore - Thom has two secrets - he has special powers and he is gay - a really good story about family, friendship, and being happy with yourself.
  3. The Amulet of Samarkand by Jonathon Stroud - first of the Bartimaeus books, all hilarious.
  4. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins - the first of the trilogy is the best but they all left me speechless.  Very violent but excellent.
  5. Boys Don't Cry by Malorie Blackman - a young lad is literally left holding the baby as his ex-girlfriend decides she can't look after the child she hadn't told him she was expecting.  It also includes a carefully thought side story about homophobia and it's consequences.
  6. Three for the price of one here - The Chaos Walking trilogy by Patrick Ness - awfully, epically depressing but fantastic.  Patrick Ness is currently one of my favourite people, having written some of my favourite books (I was tempted to include A Monster Calls because it is beautiful), and his inspiring CILIP Carnegie acceptance speech
  7. Out of Shadows by Jason Wallace - set in a Zimbabwean boarding school just as Robert Mugabe came into power after the war for independence, the story demonstrates racial tensions perfectly
  8. Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater - the very best of all the paranormal romance type books (plus sequels).
  9. Mortal Engines by Philip Reeve - the first novel of the Hungry City Chronicles is by far the best but I enjoyed the whole series.  Municiple Darwinism is a fantastic idea and the story and writing are excellent.
  10. The Declaration by Gemma Malley - the first in yet another trilogy but a chilling tale of a future where the Longevity drug has given everyone a long life at the expense of younger generations.
Man alive, with all the trilogies/series this is a lot more than 10 books, if you've not already read them then get a wriggle on!

1 comment:

  1. +JMJ+

    I haven't heard of The Declaration before today, but the premise is making me excited! I probably wouldn't require teens to read a new Dystopian novel over the classics by Orwell, Huxley, et. al., but this one sounds really fascinating!