Need help finding a gift for the young adult lit fans in your life? Here is a quick list of awesome books and who will like them.
If you liked The Hunger Games:
- Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins – Collins first series may have a younger protagonist but the themes of war, hard choices and shades of gray are still there and by the end of book 5 you may have a hard time deciding which of the series you like more. Gregor is a normal kid growing up in the city with his mother and baby sister. When his sister manages to fall down a vent in the laundry room, Gregor jumps in after her and tumbles into a world underneath the city he never knew existed. Filled with giant cockroaches and bats large enough for humans to ride, Gregor is definitely a fantasy story, but the hero must make some hard choices when the final battle between the humans and the rats approaches.
- Unwind by Neal Shusterman – Book 3 in this series was just released and it is full of action but also tough questions. In a near future, after a war on abortion rights tore the country apart, a compromise was reached: parents have the choice to unwind their unwanted children up until the age of 18, selling the child’s body parts for money. Three teens fight back in 3 different ways and the story gets more intense as each books goes on.
- Uglies by Scott Westerfeld – a great dystopian trilogy about the power and prejudice of beauty. Everyone is considered ugly until their 16 birthday when they are sent for the special surgery to make them pretty. Tally is excited about her approaching birthday, until her new friend Shay raises some questions about what really happens when you turn pretty.
- Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers – Ismae escapes an arranged marriage and hides herself in what appears to be a convent. She soon learns that this isn’t just a sanctuary for young girls, but a place where they learn to the art of assassination. After years of training, Ismae is finally ready for her first assignment. A dark tale definitely for the old young adult reader.
If you liked Fault in Our Stars:
- King Dork by Frank Portman – A teen struggles with the long absence of his father while trying to navigate senior year of high school (and try to understand his teacher’s obsession with Catcher in the Rye). Hilarious and heart felt, good for those at the older end of YA.
- Me, Earl, and the Dying Girl – Another story about teens dealing with cancer though this one has a lot more boner jokes. And there’s nothing wrong with that.
- Ask the Passengers by A.S. King – a teen girl deals with living in a small town, her parent’s issues, and her own questions about her sexuality. Every night she lies on the picnic table in her backyard and “sends her love” to the planes flying overhead.
If you want any other read-alike suggestions for certain books, leave me a comment and I’ll find you a match!