Teen Book Reviews

Welcome to my page of teen book reviews and young adult book reviews.

If you're a teen reader, the book reviews on these pages will help you find something great to read. If you're a parent, I hope this page will give you some ideas for books to suggest to your teenager.

teen books reviews, teen boy readingMy son, Ollie, reading with our dog

Finding the best books for teens can be tricky. They've grown out of the types of books they enjoyed as kids but dismiss most of the books adults read as 'boring'. Often they have to read a lot for school, are overwhelmed by homework and assignments and tell you going to the library is 'not cool'.

Some teenagers never really get into reading because their reading skills simply didn't develop to the point where reading becomes easy for them. You see, like any new skill, reading is difficult and requires a lot of brain effort to master when a child is first learning to read. With lots of practice, it usually becomes pretty automatic by the age of about the age of nine. This means that the brain recognises most words automatically so the child can read fluently and understand what he reads without much effort.

Sadly, some children never reach this stage. There are many reasons for this but the bottom line is that if they find reading hard, kids just won't do it.

And of course, in an age of multiple digital distractions, it can be hard to get teens reading, even if they do read well.

Many teenagers do still love to read, of course, but, if your teenagers no longer read for pleasure - or if they only rarely pick up a book - you're certainly not alone! 

So how do you get your teen reading?

The best thing to do is to find a book that captures your teen's interest. Easier said than done, I know, but there are some great books listed on these pages that I think will help.

As with younger kids, making reading fun is the key. Find a book your teen wants to read, get him reading and his reading skills will develop, making reading easier and more enjoyable.

It's a cycle really, which is why it's important for teenagers to continue to read, even if you're not always thrilled about what they're reading. Get them reading, their skills will improve and hopefully they'll move on to reading more widely.

And there are some wonderful books written for this age group. Many are part of a teen book series which is great because, if you can get your teen to read Book 1, they'll probably move on to the next in the series.

Some of the books I've listed here may appeal more to boys than girls (and vice versa) but many, like John Marsden's Tomorrow series and the Harry Potter books are popular with both. 

Young Adult Books

Teen fiction and young adult fiction are two quite distinct (though overlapping) categories.

Young adult books often deal with more mature themes so my rule of thumb is that they're better suited to kids aged from fifteen or sixteen up.

reading, amazon kindleMy daughter, Annie, with her Kindle

Think of young adult books as a bridge between children's books and adult fiction.

They're a fairly recent development, having only really been around since the 1990s and they generally deal with the things that concern young people in their late teens and early twenties.

If a book is advertised as a 'young adult novel' and you have doubts about whether it's suitable for your child, I suggest reading it yourself before giving it to your son or daughter to read. 

Finding Great Books for Teens

Here are some of the writers who I think are delivering brilliant stories for both younger teens and for young adults:

Here are some of the book series that are popular with teens:

I've also reviewed a number of other books that I've loosely classified according to whether they tend to appeal more to girls or to boys:

Having said that, do encourage your teens to be adventurous and to try books that, at first glance, may seem to be "girls' books" or "boys' books".

My daughter raved so much about The Hunger Games trilogy that my husband and one of my sons have just read all three books on their Kindles and really enjoyed them.

Finally, I've reviewed some really great biographies and autobiographies and some brilliant novels set during World War II which are terrific for teens:

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