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Adult Books 4 Teens
Inside Adult Books 4 Teens

Along the Watchtower

Along the Watchtower

Lucinda grows up at the very end of the Cold War, the daughter of a military family who has never lived in the United States. They have moved from one base to another her whole life. This book is about how she copes during her teen years, particularly with a volatile mother, an oblivious father, […]

The Kid

The Kid

The Kid is author Sapphire’s 2nd novel, following Push (Knopf, 1996). Today’s audiences know Push best as Precious, the 2009 film that was nominated for several Oscars. (The 2009 Vintage paperback reprint is actually titled Precious: based on the novel “Push”.) The Kid is the story of what becomes of Precious’ son after she dies of […]


Where's My Wand?

How did I manage to get a whole month into this blog without posting the review of a memoir?? It seems to be common knowledge that memoir is a genre with tremendous teen appeal. Yes and no. Just because a memoir begins with the child and young adulthood of the writer does not mean that […]

Post-apocalyptic Africa

Who Fears Death

A post-apocalyptic, post-technology fantasy set in an Africa plagued by ethnic conflict, genocide and sorcerers. Despite its heavy topic, there is no question that Who Fears Death will appeal to teens. A young girl becomes a young woman while accepting the responsibility of saving her people, helped only by equally young friends and the occasional, […]

Southern Novels

The Queen of Palmyra

The Help by Kathryn Stockett (Amy Einhorn Books/Putnam) was originally published in February 2009, and is still on the hardcover bestseller list (#12 this week according to Publishers Weekly). That makes 73 weeks in a row. The paperback is currently scheduled for December 2011 (?!). No doubt another wave of popularity will surface next summer–the […]

The House of Tomorrow

The House of Tomorrow

People often ask me how I find adult books with teen appeal. There are several ways, from reading pre-pub lists and advance reviews, to attending publisher previews, to perusing bookstore shelves. One source I always check is the IndieBound Indie Next List, released on the first of each month. The IndieBound website promotes independent bookstores. […]

Irish Travellers

The Outside Boy

This paperback original is a real find. The Outside Boy is an historical coming-of-age story set within a mostly vanished community likely unfamiliar to teens. In the Author’s Note, Cummins states that one of her goals in writing the book was to depict travellers (or gypsies) beyond the usual stereotypes. Apart from any agenda, this […]

Beyond the Usual Fantasy Fare

Under Heaven

Canadian fantasy author Guy Gavriel Kay is always a good possibility for teen fantasy readers, but he has outdone himself with Under Heaven. Known for setting fantasy in a slightly altered historical context, this time he bases his world on China. Young protagonists coming of age, love, war and adventure combine in an epic story recommended […]

Coming of Age in America

Girl in Translation

I have been telling everyone I know about Girl in Translation by Jean Kwok ever since reading it last spring. It makes a great booktalk (I used it several times at the end of the school year), and would be a satisfying bookgroup choice for either adults or teens. Publishers Weekly printed a short interview […]