For Teen Read Week, Teens Tell Us What They Love to Read

By Lauren Ernt, Free Spirit’s publishing administrative assistant

“Seek the Unknown @ your library” is the theme for this year’s Teen Read Week (October 13–19), the Young Adult Library Services Associations’ annual teen literacy program. To celebrate, we asked members of Free Spirit’s own Teen Advisory Council to tell us about their favorite books and why they love to read.

Unsurprisingly, their responses reflected the Teen Read Week theme. As one TAC member put it, “When you read, you can enter any world, you can be anyone, and you can have adventures that you otherwise wouldn’t have.”

As for the books they choose and why, we’ll let the teens explain:

Enders GameMy favorite book is Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card. It has always attracted me because of the way Card gets inside the minds of his characters and lets the audience really understand them. (Richard) City of BonesRight now it is City of Bones by Cassandra Clare. I’ve read so many books at this point that I’m usually able to predict what happens, but this completely keeps me guessing. (Allison)
The Hunger GamesThe Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. It is seriously a great thriller with an insane plot. The series never disappoints. (Sophie) I enjoy the Thirteenth Reality series by James Dashner. It has a little of everything—science fiction, humor, fantasy, and action. Best of all, there is no foul language so preteens can enjoy it as well! (Mara)
I like all the Sarah Dessen books because I really like beach-reading books. (Lizzie)
The Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan. Ultra long, ultra complex, ultra awesome. (Jesse)
The Great GatsbyThe Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. It’s beautifully written and has one of the most fascinating characters of all time. (Harry)
As I Lay DyingI absolutely love William Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying—the way it plays with language, class, and what it means to be part of a family. Wonderful! (Maria Elena) LookingForAlaska-coverLooking for Alaska by John Green. While by now this best-selling teen novel has become almost a cliché among the hipster readers of my generation, the uniquely teenage insecurity made of inexperience and love still resonates. (Margarita)
The PactThe Pact by Jodi Picoult. I love this book because it is very suspenseful and it has a lot of twists and turns. (Larissa) The Bell JarThe Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath. It’s poetic and sad, but even though it’s sad it’s still wonderful. (Elizabeth)
King Solomons MinesIt’s hard for me to choose a favorite book, but a book that I seem to enjoy above all the rest is King Solomon’s Mines by H. Rider Haggard. This book is a story of treasure hunting, of love, and of honor. (Aaron) American SniperAmerican Sniper by Chris Kyle. It’s my favorite book ’cause I love the military and it gives an accurate portrayal of a Seal’s journey through deployments. (Andrew)
Free the ChildrenFree the Children by Craig Kielburger is my all-time favorite book. It made me so much more aware of what is going on outside my little bubble, which I call home. . . . It gave me the motivation to want to go out and change the world. (Maria) My favorite books are fantasy, and all that I can think of are in series. A very brief list: A Song of Ice and Fire by George R.R. Martin; The Kingkiller Chronicles by Patrick Rothfuss; and The Night Angel Trilogy by Brent Weeks. (Matthew)
One Hundred Years of SolitudeMy favorite book is constantly changing, but right now it’s One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez. I love it because García Márquez captures the complicated nature of family relationships perfectly. The writing is absolutely beautiful, and everything feels magical but somehow also totally real. (Laura) TheNightCircusThe Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. It is a book that makes for lovely, warm feelings. I regret having read it during the summer, for it would be the perfect book to read curled up before the fire, with a mug of hot chocolate. (Sophia)
The HelpThe Help by Kathryn Stockett. It’s an interesting way to learn about the civil rights movement and the history of the United States. (Rachel) FlippedI love Flipped by Wendelin Van Draanen. It’s unique in the way that the characters tell the same story, but from two points of view. Another one of my favorite books has been around for 200 years. One of Jane Austen’s great works, Pride and Prejudice is a work that I believe every girl should read at least once. (Kirsten)

What books did you read as a teen? What do the teens in your life read today?


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2 Responses to For Teen Read Week, Teens Tell Us What They Love to Read

  1. Pingback: Fiction and the Development of Character | Free Spirit Publishing Blog

  2. Pingback: The Dawson’s Creek Issue: Should Teenagers in YA Stories Sound Like Teenagers? | Caroline Norrington

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