January 17, 2012

YA For the Not-So-Sure-About-YA

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature/meme that takes place every Tuesday over at The Broke and the Bookish. This week's list is a fill-in-the-blank topic:

Top 10 Books I'd Recommend to Somebody Who Does't Read [Young Adult Fiction].

This topic is tough not because I can't think of a ton of YA books that people should read, but because I'm trying to think of the YA titles that make the crossover just a bit smoother. I want people to realize that YA isn't all sparkly vampires, swooning (though, I'm totally on board with swooning), and angsty heroines. So this list is not to be taken as my 'Top 10 Favourite YA Books Of All Time' (some of them definitely make that list), but rather YA that I feel is accessible to the skeptical, on the fence, 'convince me' folks.

1)  Divergent by Veronica Roth
2)  Cinder by Marissa Meyer
3)  The Maze Runner series by James Dashner
4)  The Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins
5)  Blood Red Road by Moira Young
6)  Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
7)  Dragonfly by Julia Golding
8)  Book of a Thousand Days by Shannon Hale
9)  East by Edith Pattou
10)  Anna and the French Kiss and Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins (for those people looking for sweet romances that aren't bodice-ripping, boot-knocking raunchy for a change)

I also like to call this list "Books I'm Not Ashamed/Mortified/Scared To Read In Public". Like I said, this list is for people who might be considering checking out YA. It's not really intended to win over the naysayers, the haters, the drag-YA-through-the-mud, the judge-all-of-YA-on-the-basis-of-one-Sparkly-Saga gum flappers. I'm convinced that nothing will ever change their minds. Speaking of this topic, if you haven't read this rant by Shannon Hale, you should. It's entitled "In Which I Gamely Stick Out My Tongue" and if that doesn't get your attention, I'm not sure what will. I think she pretty much sticks it to the aforementioned blowhards with this insightful post.


Any books that you would recommend to someone thinking about crossing over to the YA side?


P.S. I kind of have a lot of hope pinned on the upcoming Hunger Games movie. I'm hoping it will win over some new people to YA that previously ran screaming after the Sparkle Saga.

31 comments:

  1. HAHAHAHAHA Omg I totally know what you mean when you say you're not embarrassed to read them in public. People are pretty skittish around YA! Great list, I have a few of these on mine :)

    My Tuesday Posts

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    1. Yeah, certain YA books look a little more "YA" than others, you know? Just read your list and it looks like we have very similar taste in books.

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  2. Definitely agree with the Hunger Games - they're the only YA books I've ever convinced my husband to read. My mom liked them, too.

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    1. My husband doesn't read YA, but in the past couple of months he read DIVERGENT and THE MAZE RUNNER trilogy and liked all of them. Success! :-)

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    2. Oh, and my mom really liked THE HUNGER GAMES trilogy too.

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  3. The Maze Runner! Loved that book ^_^

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    1. It was really good, wasn't it? I still haven't read THE DEATH CURE, the third in the trilogy. I found I needed a little refresher on what happened in book 2 before I could jump right in to book 3.

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  4. Some of the books on your list are some of my favorites :D I have not read The Maze Runner yet though...hmmm need to add it to my TBR.
    My hubby aka The Chemical Engineer is not a YA reader. Actually he does not read any fiction, he is a fan of non-fiction (even if he does not read a lot). I have been trying to convince him to read The Hunger Games cos I know he would enjoy it but so far...no luck :D

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    1. Keep working on him :-) Though, my husband was only so-so on THE HUNGER GAMES (I know, what's up with that?) and really enjoyed DIVERGENT. À chacun son goût, n'est-ce pas? (that was probably so horribly incorrect, but oh well, you get the idea) :-)

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    2. Wow I´m impressed by your French :D
      I´ll try to convince him to read one or the other but now that he knows there is a movie about The Hunger Games, I might run out of luck...lol

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  5. I've converted a lot of people to YA with The Hunger Games. :) And Anna and the French Kiss--goodness, I love that book!

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    1. It definitely has the power to convert. Fingers crossed that the movie is really well done and that it draws people in. As for ANNA and the FRENCH KISS - it's just all kinds of good :-)

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  6. I need to read Divergent (it's been sitting on my shelf for almost a year now). And I'm going to read Cinder soon. The books I have heard of, I love. I'll have to look into the others. Great list!

    My Top Ten

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    1. DIVERGENT is really, really good! I thought CINDER was very unique, especially considering it was a retelling of Cinderella.

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  7. I know some Hunger Games YA converts, and I've recommended Divergent to all of the :)

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    1. Like I mentioned in another comment, my husband actually preferred DIVERGENT over THE HUNGER GAMES and he's not a YA fan really. I love them both but for entirely different reasons.

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  8. I actually got Anna and the French Kiss only last week and it's crying out to me from the shelf! Actually, that's a perfect example - I don't usually read YA, but I can't wait to read that.

    I've also recommended The Hunger Games and Divergent to loads of people who don't usually read YA and they've nearly always ended up loving it.

    I'm thinking about getting a copy of The Maze Runner with my next paycheck. I know it's supposed to be absolutely amazing.

    Have a great week :)

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    1. I didn't understand what all the fuss was about with ANNA and the FRENCH KISS...until I read it. I was up until 3am finishing it in one sitting. If you like THE HUNGER GAMES and DIVERGENT, then you should like THE MAZE RUNNER. They're not the same, but there's a similar feel to them. Enjoy! :-)

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  9. I might swap Variant for Maze Runner--I think they have some key elements in common but Variant grabbed me a lot quicker.

    Also good--a few really solid coming-of-age stories that may or may not have been meant as YA: Prep by Curtis Sittenfeld and Special Topics in Calamity Physics by Marisa Pesshl. They read more like adult novels, I think, so for people who enjoy, well, the kind of books my mom's book club reads (good quality mainstream fiction) these could be a good gateway.

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    1. I haven't read either, but will be checking them out on Goodreads right away :-) I also own VARIANT but haven't gotten around to reading it yet.

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  10. Great choices, Jaime. I'd also add JELLICOE ROAD and Lucy Christopher's STOLEN to that list. Both are amazing, and YA without being all teen-ish (the horrors!).

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    1. I have JELLICOE ROAD (still haven't read it, though) and I just looked up STOLEN on Goodreads. Yikes! That sounds really interesting :D

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  11. lol! Sparkling Saga! love it!

    I really want to read Blood Red Road. I haven't read any of the books on that list.

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    1. BLOOD RED ROAD is great. Some people were put off that it's written in Saba's (the MC) dialect, but to me that just added to the story and to her voice. There also aren't any quotation marks around dialogue, but it all still works.

      You should definitely read DIVERGENT and THE HUNGER GAMES - they're awesome! :-)

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    2. I'd still read it. Saba's name comes from the country my parents came from so i think I'll give the book that. I have read a preview and was slightly bothered but I think I'll give it a try.

      I don't really have an interest in the Hunger Games. I HATE dystopia.

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  12. I LOVE YA books, but I still want to read most of those titles on your list. :)

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    1. Oh yeah, I love YA to death. I pretty much only read YA :-)

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  13. I love all your posts, Jaime!

    I LOVE Shannon Hale, James Dashner, and Suzanne Collins... there's a magic to YA books. :D

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    1. Thanks, Morgan :-) And you're right, they are awesome authors!

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  14. This is a great list, Jaime. Of course, I never have any problem reading YA in public. :)

    I would definitely add 13 Reasons Why on this list.

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    1. Thanks, Alicia :-) I read YA in public anyway, though some have covers that look really young, if you know what I mean. 13 Reasons Why would probably a good one too if you weren't sure about YA - good suggestion.

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