’tis the season for ‘Best Of’ lists with plenty of suggestions for the best books of 2013! With so many great books out there, it can be a daunting task to pick out the best of the best. After spending a few weeks compiling titles from various sources, I came up with the books that appear on the most lists.
John Green says he never would have written The Fault in Our Stars, his best-selling novel narrated by a 16-year-old girl with cancer, had he not gotten to know Esther Earl, who was 16 when she died of cancer four years ago.
With the help of his mother, Middletown (CT) High School freshman John Grasis, 14, has crafted a semi autographical book from what began as a seventh-grade English assignment that called for frightening fiction.
If you were to ask what I do for my life, the answer would be writing and reading. I have to limit myself from going to my public library, because I end up taking WAY too many books than I can handle to read. I start to cry when I walk into Barnes & Noble. Yeah, it's bad. Anyway, here are some of my favorite young adult and middle grade authors!
In Len Vlahos’s debut novel, the Scar Boys are a punk band from Yonkers that hits the road riding a rusty van and working out personal problems while playing gigs in college towns as far south as Georgia. “Music to the rescue,” muses Harry, the book’s narrator. Playing and touring demand creativity and commitment, forcing the Scar Boys — actually three guys and a girl — to come of age in this wry, stylish tale.
Although I’m unsure about whether I’ll sign on for a sequel, I found this debut story to be a good read. A future society that’s tampered with genetics and gadgets is a fascinating one, and I loved the emotional connections Zel makes while single-mindedly focused on rescuing her loved one. Control is a solid read for sci-fi lovers who don’t mind a fun if predictable storyline.
The Young Adult market has made a killer impact in the movie industry with film franchises like ‘Twilight’ and ‘The Hunger Games’ making big bucks at the box office. Fox, of course, knows this and has always been on the lookout for the next big thing. Their guess is that the next big thing will be James Frey’s upcoming young adult series that all starts with ‘Endgame’.
Hazel (Shailene Woodley) and Gus (Ansel Elgort) are two extraordinary teenagers who share an acerbic wit, a disdain for the conventional, and a love that sweeps them -- and us -- on an unforgettable journey. Their relationship is all the more miraculous, given that they met and fell in love at a cancer support group. THE FAULT IN OUR STARS, based upon the number-one bestselling novel by John Green, explores the funny, thrilling and tragic business of being alive and in love.
For the past five years, Hayley Kincaid and her father, Andy, have been on the road, never staying long in one place as he struggles to escape the demons that have tortured him since his return from Iraq. Now they are back in the town where he grew up so Hayley can attend school. Perhaps, for the first time, Hayley can have a normal life, put aside her own painful memories, even have a relationship with Finn, the hot guy who obviously likes her but is hiding secrets of his own.
The teen reviewers from the Young Adult Advisory Councils (YAAC) did a lot of reading during the holiday break, and the reward is all ours. Included in the pile was a nonfiction title, Hidden Girl, which tells the story of an eight-year-old Egyptian girl who is sold into slavery by her own family. These teens also tackled contemporary mysteries, a bit of magic realism, and science fiction. Enjoy this bumper crop of reviews!
This new title is written by a former teacher of Dowling Catholic High School and we are pleased to have received some copies early after it’s release. The story captures the many worries and thoughts that go through a typical teenager’s head during his or her senior year but adds in the extra burden of having a father deployed.
With the huge rise of teen fantasy books (and associated films) from Twilight to The Hunger Games, everyone's an expert on magical teen tales. But how much you really know about your favourite heroes and their stories?
The very least that can be said about Susan Collins' Hunger Games trilogy is that it has become a force, if not the force, in both genre fiction and young adult literature.Much like how Doom swept the video game landscape of the mid-90s, the "Hunger Games Clone" was probably an inevitable phenomenon. Whether or not these books were independently influenced or just successful cash-ins is a debate for another time, but audiences and Hollywood analysts are already gearing up for the Divergent movie coming in a few months as a barometer of YAL's true permanence as a theater mainstay.
This was a banner year for book-to-film adaptations, especially for young adult audiences—from the top-grossing The Hunger Games: Catching Fire to the disappointing City of Bones and the sleeper hitThe Spectacular Now. As 2014 peeks around the corner, SLJ looks ahead to future releases in this latest installment of our roundup of the most highly anticipated franchise openers and long-awaited big screen versions of children’s classics.
If you’re science fiction-shy, this book is the perfect leap into the genre. It’s funny and smart and romance-filled. Alienated was a fantastic debut novel, and I am so excited to see where this series goes – highly recommended.