Summer is a great time for teens to read books that aren’t assigned in school. One of the biggest complaints about English classes many teens have is that the books they read are old or boring; literature is an important part of studying English, but teens also enjoy contemporary young adult (YA) books. There are many YA novels and graphic novels that are sure to satisfy any teen’s desire for a good summer read.
Beach Reads for Teens
Whether a teen is going on vacation or not, summer is the best time of year to sit outside with a book and a glass of lemonade. Having a book on hand is the easiest way to combat summer boredom and make vacation more interesting.
Sucks to Be Me, by Kimberly Pauley, is a must read for any vampire fan who is tired of the Twilight series. Mina Hamilton is the human daughter of vampires –boring, ordinary parents aside from being undead. However, she only has a month to decide whether she wants to become a vampire too. Add the normal stresses of high school to the mix, and Sucks to Be Me is a story any teen can get into. The sequel, Still Sucks to Be Me, follows Mina’s continued adventures.
Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials is a look at an alternate universe where humans’ souls take the shape of animals and become a companion. Lyra, the main character, must journey throughout her own world and many others to find the source of the Dust that is causing religious and political havoc in her own world. Along the way, she makes allies in the form of a boy named Will and a massive polar bear. His Dark Materials is a series of three unforgettable books.
The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins, is a post-apocalyptic story of a society in which teens are used for gladiatorial entertainment and everyone from the main characters to the viewers of these games is in danger of losing their humanity. This gripping story is the first in a series, and no teen who picks it up will be able to put it down.
Kimberly Derting’s The Body Finder is a book that both teens and adults can enjoy. The story of a high school student who can sense the presence of murder victims –and their killers –is in a race against time as a series of girls disappears from her hometown. As she copes with her supernatural ability and life as a high school student, she comes to the realization that she is next on the killer’s list.
Graphic Novels for Teens
Although comic books are not a common choice for many teens, graphic novels offer a great deal of excellent reading material for young adult readers. YA graphic novels cover a spectrum of topics, from graphic novel versions of famous literary works to highly original pieces sure to delight old and new fans of the genre. Webcomics are another form of the graphic novel that many teens enjoy.
Y: The Last Man is a series of 10 graphic novels by Brian Vaughan and illustrated by Pia Guerra. Y follows the trials and challenges of Yorick Brown, who is the only man on the planet who survived a plague that killed off all of the males. Y is a compelling story about an imagined future that no reader will be able to forget.
The Apocalipstix is a rollicking and humorous story about a band scheduled to go on tour right before Armageddon got in the way. As society crumbles around them, the girls in the band are determined to go on tour anyway. For teens looking for a humorous read, Apocalipstix can provide plenty of laughs.
Rapunzel’s Revenge is suitable for young teens and adult readers who have a taste for the whimsical. A re-imagined fairy tale by Shannon and Dean Hale, and illustrated by Nathan Hale, Rapunzel’s Revenge tells the story of a Rapunzel who wasn’t about to wait around to be rescued. After she frees herself, Rapunzel joins forces with other fairy tale heroes to take on the wicked witch.
Whether teens are looking for vampires, romance, a graphic novel or post-apocalyptic literature, there are books available for all readers. Young adult books are abundant, and there is no better time than summer to explore them.
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