Jennifer Rummel declares “I Love YA” (with apologies to Randy Newman)
I read YA because I LOVE it!
One of the most important books in the history of YA. It’s about a huge issue, but it’s also about friendship, finding yourself and your voice, and being a social outcast in high school. Years after its publication, girls are still finding it helpful.
This book is so haunting I don’t even know how to begin to describe it. It’s about two girls who used to be friends and also have eating disorders. They grew apart and one girl died. The other struggles to survive.
A heart wrenching yet funny take on eating disorders. “It was like they went from being my Band of Barfers, my Sisterhood of Sneaky Eaters, to my Judge and freaking Jury in three minutes flat.” Littman tackles such a huge issue with humor and honesty while letting the raw pain of her characters shine through. It’s really a book everyone should be reading and chatting about. It’s that good.
I read this book until it fell apart when I was younger. I loved the friendship drama between Steph, Alison, and Rachel. This was my Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (which is also amazingly good).
I devoured this one. It’s about a girl who creates 13 tapes of the 13 people she blames for her life. The tapes are sent right before she commits suicide. One of the 13 is listening to these tapes. It was so dark and brutally honest. I wanted the outcome of the story to be different, but of course you already know the ending of the book from the beginning.
Disaster strikes when a meteor hits the moon, pushing it closer to Earth. Havoc and chaos reign as everything changes. I’d never read anything like this book. I couldn’t put it down. I wasn’t expecting it to be so emotional. Whenever I hear of a potential disaster strike, I always want to stock up on canned goods now.
Macy learns to deal with her father’s death by embracing chaos into her formally perfectly ordered life. I can’t say enough about this book dealing with grief, letting yourself go, and finding your true identity. I hate the library scenes, but they do also make me chuckle. I found Macy to be brave.
DJ helps a rival high school quarter back with his game while they work on her family farm. I love how this book defies gender stereotypes in sports books. I found DJ to be strong, caring, and athletic. I think everyone who likes sports books should read this one!
A novel in verse, that’s hard to read due to the subject matter: prostitution of young girls. Lakshmi is a survivor and she keeps hope alive, even in the darkest moments.
The ultimate road trip book featuring four siblings whose mother left them alone. They travel south along the east coast to find family and a place to call home. It’s a heartwrenching book about survival, family, and hope.
Filed under: Why YA?
About Karen Jensen, MLS
Karen Jensen has been a Teen Services Librarian for almost 30 years. She created TLT in 2011 and is the co-editor of The Whole Library Handbook: Teen Services with Heather Booth (ALA Editions, 2014).
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