Are your kids ready to head back to school? It’s been a long summer vacation, but now it’s time to hit the books. If your kids are headed into middle school or high school this year, why not get them some reading material that actually gets those awkward teen years right? Reading about high school and the challenges ahead is a great way to prepare your kids for uncharted territory. Starting high school is a major transition for kids, but books that get it right can help them with this important step. When you go back to school shopping, throw in some of these popular YA novels from authors that understand high school.
#1 Falling into Place by Amy Zhang
This one gets right to the heart of the some of the toughest parts of high school. Zhang’s book about a girl named Liz Emerson is written in a dreamy style of prose and delves deep into the loneliness and insecurities everyone feels in high school. Falling into Place takes on the high school clichés and turns them on their head. It’s a must-read for anyone about to face the emotional rollercoaster that is high school.
#2 Sam and Ilsa’s Last Hurrah by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan
Sam and Ilsa’s Last Hurrah is one of those books that will keep kids up all night reading. It’s a teen adventure that seems like a direct descendent of Ferris Buehler’s Day Off. This story is about twins famous for throwing parties and the last bash of high school.
#3 All American Boys by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely
The world is a complicated place, and books that can help us navigate it. All American Boys tackles the difficult subject of police brutality told from the perspectives of a black teen beaten by police officers and a white teen connected to the officer.
#4 The Duff by Kody Keplinger
Bianca’s life gets turned upside down when she finds out that her best friend only wants to be around her because she’s less attractive. This book tackles issues like body image and family dynamics head on, through a cynical voice that maturing teenagers will be able to relate to.
#5 Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver
Groundhog Day in YA form, this novel features Sam, one of the most popular girls in school, repeating her last day on earth over and over, all leading up to a car crash. As she continues to live her last again and again, she re-evaluates her ethics and choices.
Keeping compelling books on your bookshelf is the best way to get kids reading. They need books that relate to what’s happening in their lives and show them that they’re not the only ones in the world who might feel the way that they do. If you love books yourself, you know that sometimes there’s no better friend in the world than the voice of the author coming to you through the pages.