Top 10 Favorite Books for Adolescents
I speak at a lot of conferences and workshops for educators, and one of the favorite parts of my presentation both for me and for my audiences is when I give book talks. Here’s a list of my favorite books that I talked about in a workshop last summer. Maybe you’ll enjoy reading them too.
Auch, Mary Jane. Ashes of Roses. Laurel-Leaf, 2004.
Immigrants, Rose Nolan and her younger sister are left to care for themselves in America and must go to work in the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory to survive. Rose makes friends with Gussie, whose father is a union organizer. And then, the infamous fire breaks out.
Ferguson, Alane. The Christopher Killer. Viking Juvenile, 2006.
Cameryn wants to be a forensic pathologist and follow in her father’s footsteps as the county coroner. When he allows her to join him, she proves she has a knack for detective work. But the next case is a murder, and the victim is one of her friends.
Funke, Cornelia. Inkheart. Scholastic Paperbacks, 2005.
A novel for the true bibliophile, filled with literary allusions, readers will enjoy the journey as they travel along with Meggie who has just discovered her father’s secret ability: he can read characters out of books and into the modern world. Unfortunately, he seems to have read Meggie’s mother into the book “Inkheart” several years before.
Holm, Jennifer. Boston Jane: An Adventure. Harper Collins, 2001.
Although Jane Peck is happy with her tomboy lifestyle, she wishes she could capture the attention of the handsome William Baldt before he moves to the great northwest. When an
invitation to join him and become his wife arrives, Jane’s life will be changed forever.
Kerr, P. B. The Children of the Lamp: The Akhenaten Adventure. Orchard, 2004.
Twins John and Philippa learn their true identity as children from a long line of Djinn, capable of granting three wishes to each person who releases them from their lamp or other temporary home. Soon they must use their new powers to overcome an ancient Egyptian pharaoh and his seventy djinn who will change the entire world if they are released into the wrong hands.
Naples, Donna Jo, The King of Mulberry Street. Wendy Lamb Books, 2005.
When Beniamino, a nine-year-old Jewish boy from Napoli, is smuggled aboard a cargo ship heading to America in 1892, he assumes his mother is onboard, too, but he has a lot to learn once he reaches New York. The streets are not safe and the food is scarce, unless you know how to survive.
Naylor, Phyllis Reynolds. Blizzard’s Wake. Atheneum, 2002.
Set in the 1941 North Dakota blizzard, the novel weaves together the story of Kate Sterling, who is still trying to cope with the death of her mother four years earlier, and Zeke Dexter, the drunk driver who killed her mom.
Ritter, John H. Choosing Up Sides. Puffin Books, 2000.
In 1921 society looked upon being left-handed as a sign of the devil. Twelve-year-old Luke is left-handed and discovers he has a natural talent for throwing a baseball. He is also the son of a preacher who sees both left-handedness and baseball as of the devil.
Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. Scholastic, 2006.
In the latest episode, Harry is faced with Lord Voldemort’s Death-Eaters, even in the Muggle world. he leaves for Hogwarts with the promise of private wizardry lessons from Dumbledore, but once again, Harry is not sure who he can trust, and who he can’t.
Rook, Sebastian. Vampire Plagues: London 1850. Scholastic, 2005.
When a ship from Mexico docks in London a flock of bats and a young boy are the only living things on board. A London street urchin, Jack Harkett, hears the boy’s tales of a vampire plague that's killed the entire crew.