The best 18 Teen books

Navigating the teenage years can be quite a rollercoaster ride. To help both teens and their parents through this transformative phase, we've curated a collection of insightful books. Covering topics such as identity, relationships, mental health, and more, these books offer guidance, support, and valuable perspectives. Whether you're a teen looking for advice or a parent seeking to understand your teenager better, this list is a must-read. Let's embark on this exciting journey of self-discovery and growth together.

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1
Teen Books: To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

To Kill a Mockingbird

Harper Lee
4.8 (228 ratings)
Listen to the Intro
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What's To Kill a Mockingbird about?

To Kill a Mockingbird (1960) is one of the most influential American novels ever written. Set in a small town in Alabama in the 1930s, it follows the Finch family over three tumultuous years as a trial divides a community. Covering themes of love and hate, innocence and experience, and kindness and cruelty, Harper Lee’s book goes to the heart of human behavior.   

Who should read To Kill a Mockingbird?

  • Anyone interested in classic fiction
  • History buffs
  • Those invested in the struggle for justice

2
Teen Books: Lord of the Flies by William Golding

Lord of the Flies

William Golding
4.6 (179 ratings)
Listen to the Intro
00:00

What's Lord of the Flies about?

Lord of the Flies (1954) is the allegorical story of a group of young boys stranded on a deserted island and left to fend for themselves and create a society. As the boys struggle with the complexities of leadership, cooperation, and survival, they are forced to face some fundamental questions about human nature and the fragility of civilization.

Who should read Lord of the Flies?

  • Readers looking for fresh eyes on an old classic
  • Literature lovers who somehow never got around to this important book
  • Anyone looking for insight into the nature of society and the humans who build it

3
Teen Books: The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

The Hunger Games

Suzanne Collins
4.8 (41 ratings)
Listen to the Intro
00:00

What's The Hunger Games about?

The Hunger Games (2008) is the first volume of the popular YA fantasy trilogy. In the post-apocalyptic future state of Panem, teenagers participate in a brutal yearly game show where they compete against each other in a deadly obstacle arena. When her sister is drafted for the games, 16-year-old Katniss Everdeen volunteers to take her place – not realizing she’ll end up fighting for something bigger than mere survival.

Who should read The Hunger Games?

  • Sci-fi fans and fantasy aficionados
  • Readers who love strong female characters
  • Fans of The Hunger Games movies with Jennifer Lawrence

4
Teen Books: The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
4.4 (174 ratings)
Listen to the Intro
00:00

What's The Book Thief about?

The Book Thief (2006) is a story about a young girl living in Nazi Germany who makes her way in the world by stealing books. With Death as the narrator, it follows her coming of age in the most difficult of times and places. 

Who should read The Book Thief?

  • Fans of historical fiction
  • Lovers of tales full of emotion and humanity
  • Seekers of literary thrills

5
Teen Books: The Family Romanov by Candace Fleming

The Family Romanov

Candace Fleming
Murder, Rebellion, and the Fall of Imperial Russia

What's The Family Romanov about?

The Family Romanov is a gripping non-fiction book that tells the tragic story of the last ruling family of Russia. Through meticulous research and compelling storytelling, Candace Fleming delves into the lives of Tsar Nicholas II, his wife Alexandra, and their five children, and explores the political and social forces that led to their downfall. It offers a fascinating insight into the final days of the Romanov dynasty and the events that shaped Russian history.

Who should read The Family Romanov?

  • History enthusiasts interested in the Romanov dynasty and Russian history
  • Readers who enjoy biographies and narratives about royal families
  • Those curious about the downfall of the last Russian Tsar and his family

6
Teen Books: Hey, Kiddo by Jarrett J. Krosoczka

Hey, Kiddo

Jarrett J. Krosoczka
How I Lost My Mother, Found My Father, and Dealt with Family Addiction

What's Hey, Kiddo about?

Hey, Kiddo is a graphic memoir that tells the story of the author's unconventional upbringing and his journey to find his place in the world. Through heartfelt illustrations and raw honesty, Krosoczka explores themes of family, addiction, and resilience, offering a powerful and inspiring account of his own life. It's a compelling and deeply personal book that will resonate with readers of all ages.

Who should read Hey, Kiddo?

  • Individuals who enjoy memoirs that explore themes of family and resilience
  • People who have experienced challenging or unconventional childhoods
  • Readers who appreciate art and graphic novels

7
Teen Books: The Pregnancy Project by Gaby Rodriguez

The Pregnancy Project

Gaby Rodriguez

What's The Pregnancy Project about?

In this memoir, Gaby Rodriguez shares her experience of faking a pregnancy as a high school social experiment. With the support of her family and friends, she challenges stereotypes and sheds light on the realities of teen pregnancy. The Pregnancy Project is a thought-provoking and inspiring book that encourages readers to question their own beliefs and assumptions about pregnancy and parenthood.

Who should read The Pregnancy Project?

  • Expectant mothers who want to challenge stereotypes and misconceptions about teenage pregnancy
  • High school students who want to explore social experiments and the impact of perceptions on identity
  • Educators and parents who are interested in fostering empathy and understanding among young people

8
Teen Books: Sunrise Over Fallujah by Walter Dean Myers

Sunrise Over Fallujah

Walter Dean Myers

What's Sunrise Over Fallujah about?

Sunrise Over Fallujah is a gripping novel that follows the experiences of a young soldier in the Iraq War. Written by acclaimed author Walter Dean Myers, the book provides a raw and honest portrayal of the realities of war, as well as the bonds formed between soldiers in the midst of chaos. Through vivid storytelling, it offers a thought-provoking exploration of the impact of war on individuals and society.

Who should read Sunrise Over Fallujah?

  • Readers interested in gaining a deeper understanding of the Iraq War and its impact
  • People who enjoy realistic and thought-provoking war literature
  • Those who appreciate a narrative that explores themes of camaraderie and personal growth amidst a war-torn setting

9
Teen Books: Hole in My Life by Jack Gantos

Hole in My Life

Jack Gantos

What's Hole in My Life about?

In this memoir, Jack Gantos recounts his reckless youth and the consequences of his poor choices. After getting involved in drug smuggling, he finds himself in prison and reflects on the hole in his life that led him down this path. Gantos ultimately discovers his passion for writing and the power of redemption. It's a raw and honest account of one man's journey towards self-discovery and transformation.

Who should read Hole in My Life?

  • Individuals who are interested in memoirs or personal stories
  • Adolescents or young adults who are struggling with making life choices and decisions
  • People who are looking for inspiration and motivation to overcome challenges and find their passion

10
Teen Books: The Carrie Diaries by Candace Bushnell

The Carrie Diaries

Candace Bushnell

What's The Carrie Diaries about?

The Carrie Diaries is a coming-of-age novel that follows the iconic character Carrie Bradshaw from Sex and the City during her teenage years in the 1980s. Set in a small town, the book explores Carrie's journey as she navigates friendships, first loves, and the pursuit of her dreams in the big city. It's a nostalgic and empowering story about self-discovery and the pursuit of independence.

Who should read The Carrie Diaries?

  • Young adults navigating the complexities of relationships, fashion, and self-discovery
  • Readers who enjoy coming-of-age stories set in New York City
  • Individuals looking for a relatable and enjoyable read that explores the journey of finding one's true passion

11
Teen Books: Before We Were Free by Julia Alvarez

Before We Were Free

Julia Alvarez

What's Before We Were Free about?

Before We Were Free is a historical novel that takes place in the Dominican Republic during the dictatorship of Rafael Trujillo. The story follows a young girl named Anita as she navigates the political turmoil and personal challenges of living under a repressive regime. Through Anita's perspective, the novel explores themes of freedom, resistance, and the power of hope in the face of adversity. It is a compelling and thought-provoking read that sheds light on a lesser-known period of history.

Who should read Before We Were Free?


12
Teen Books: Out of Darkness by Kate Kiesler

Out of Darkness

Kate Kiesler
The Story of Louis Braille

What's Out of Darkness about?

Out of Darkness is a beautifully illustrated children's book that tells the story of a little bat who is afraid of the dark. Through a journey of self-discovery, the bat learns to embrace the darkness and discovers the beauty and wonder that can be found within it. This heartwarming tale encourages children to overcome their fears and find the light within themselves.

Who should read Out of Darkness?

  • Readers who are interested in exploring the depths of darkness and the triumph of the human spirit
  • Individuals who enjoy reflective and thought-provoking literature
  • People who appreciate strong character development and nuanced storytelling

13
Teen Books: Tweak by Nic Sheff

Tweak

Nic Sheff
Growing Up On Methamphetamines

What's Tweak about?

Tweak is a memoir by Nic Sheff that chronicles his struggle with addiction and his journey to recovery. Sheff provides a raw and honest account of his experiences with drugs, relapses, and the impact it had on his family and friends. Through his compelling storytelling, he sheds light on the complexities of addiction and the challenges of finding redemption.

Who should read Tweak?

  • Individuals struggling with addiction or supporting someone who is
  • Those seeking a raw and personal account of addiction and recovery
  • Anyone interested in gaining insight into the challenges and triumphs of overcoming addiction

14
Teen Books: The Fault in Our Stars by Nicola Winstanley, John Green

The Fault in Our Stars

Nicola Winstanley, John Green

What's The Fault in Our Stars about?

The Fault in Our Stars is actually written by John Green and tells the story of two teenagers, Hazel and Gus, who meet at a cancer support group. As they bond over their favorite books and share their fears and dreams, they embark on a journey that challenges their perspectives on life and love. It is a poignant and beautifully written novel that explores the complexities of living with illness and the power of human connection.

Who should read The Fault in Our Stars?

  • Readers who enjoy emotionally impactful and thought-provoking stories
  • Those who appreciate authentic and relatable characters
  • Anyone interested in exploring themes of love, loss, and the meaning of life

What's The Perks of Being a Wallflower about?

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky is a poignant coming-of-age story that follows Charlie, a shy and introspective teenager. Through a series of letters, Charlie shares his experiences as he navigates high school, friendship, love, and loss. The book delves into themes of mental health, identity, and the complexities of growing up.

Who should read The Perks of Being a Wallflower?

  • Teenagers and young adults navigating the ups and downs of adolescence
  • Individuals who appreciate introspective and emotionally resonant storytelling
  • Readers who enjoy coming-of-age narratives with complex and relatable characters

16
Teen Books: Divergent by Veronica Roth

Divergent

Veronica Roth

What's Divergent about?

Divergent by Veronica Roth is a thrilling dystopian novel set in a society where people are divided into factions based on their personalities. When the protagonist, Beatrice Prior, discovers she doesn't fit into any one faction, she uncovers a dangerous conspiracy that threatens to unravel the entire social order. This action-packed book explores themes of identity, choice, and rebellion. A must-read for fans of dystopian fiction!

Who should read Divergent?

  • Teenagers and young adults interested in dystopian fiction
  • Readers who enjoy stories with strong female protagonists
  • Individuals who are drawn to themes of self-discovery and identity

17
Teen Books: The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher

The Princess Diarist

Carrie Fisher

What's The Princess Diarist about?

The Princess Diarist is a memoir by Carrie Fisher that delves into her experience filming the original Star Wars trilogy. Filled with personal diary entries and reflections, Fisher offers a candid and witty account of her time as Princess Leia, as well as her secret affair with co-star Harrison Ford. It provides a unique behind-the-scenes look at the iconic film series and explores Fisher's own journey to self-discovery.

Who should read The Princess Diarist?

  • Star Wars fans looking for behind-the-scenes insights
  • Those interested in Carrie Fisher's personal experiences and reflections
  • People who enjoy candid and witty memoirs

18
Teen Books: The Maze Runner by James Dashner

The Maze Runner

James Dashner

What's The Maze Runner about?

The Maze Runner by James Dashner delves into a dystopian world where a group of boys are trapped in a mysterious maze with their memories erased. As they navigate through the dangerous maze and try to find a way out, they uncover dark secrets about their past and the outside world. Filled with suspense and thrilling twists, this book is a gripping journey into a hauntingly unique reality.

Who should read The Maze Runner?

  • Young adult readers who enjoy dystopian science fiction
  • People who are fans of fast-paced, action-packed storytelling
  • Readers who are looking for an immersive and suspenseful series

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