Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books I’d Recommend To My Anti-YA Friend


Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Top Ten Books I’d Recommend To X Person — where X could be just about anyone. I had a hard time figuring out my focus for this week, but then it came to me! I have a certain BBF (Best Book Friend) who is wonderful in every way — except she turns up her nose whenever I suggest a young adult novel. Typical conversation:

BBF: What are you reading?

Me: (Shows book cover)

BBF: Oh. Is that… YA? (said with a distinct sneer and an uplifted eyebrow)

To be honest, I think she’s been permanently scarred by the Twilight series, and has never recovered. But just to show her that the world of YA is full of wonderful books, here is my list of 10 books I’d give her that I’m sure would crack her YA aversion!

Code Name Verity

1) Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

The Fault in Our Stars

2) The Fault in Our Stars by John Green


3) Incantation by Alice Hoffman

The Blue Sword (Damar, #1)

4) The Blue Sword by Robin McKinley

Eleanor & Park

5) Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

Dash & Lily's Book of Dares

6) Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares by David Levithan and Rachel Cohn

The 5th Wave (The 5th Wave, #1)

7) The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey

The Diviners (The Diviners, #1)

8) The Diviners by Libba Bray

How I Live Now

9) How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

10) The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie

These ten books just scratch the surface — but my hope is that my BBF would start to appreciate the depth, imagination, and fabulous writing that you can easily find on the YA shelf. A smattering of contemporary, fantasy, historical, and sci-fi, these are just a few of my favorites — and these are the YA books I tend to push into unsuspecting people’s hands the most in response to the question, “Hmm. What do you recommend?”

PS – You may ask, “What about The Book Thief?” It’s simple: I adore The Book Thief and think everyone should read it — but because I really did put together this list with a particular person in mind, I decided not to include something that I knew she’d already read!

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27 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books I’d Recommend To My Anti-YA Friend

    • It’s really a good one — and the movie version just came out this week! I haven’t seen it yet, but I’m hoping to squeeze it in this weekend or next! Thanks for stopping by. 😉

    • Oh, I agree — I keep insisting (to her and others) that a good book is a good book, whether or not there’s a YA label stuck on it. 🙂 Can’t wait to see what’s on your list — thanks for stopping by!

    • Did you cry as much as I did? 🙂 If you enjoy YA (or really, if you enjoy a good book, period), then any of these are definitely recommended! Thanks for visiting!

      • I teared up, but I didn’t cry that much. Probably because I was bracing myself for the future during the whole book. I liked the writing very much, though! Eleanor & Park, Dash and Lily are on my to read list, I’ve been eying The Diviners and How I Live Now, but I don’t think I’ve ever heard of The Blue Sword. That one looks interesting!

        • Well, if you try any of these, let me know what you think! I love The Blue Sword (obviously!) — it’s an older book, but really ground-breaking I think in terms of a fantasy novel with a strong female character at the center of it all.

    • Ooh, great idea! Both of those books are such “keepers” — I think in both cases, I bought myself copies after reading library copies, because I just had to have them on my shelf. 🙂

    • See, you’re the perfect target for my list! LOL. I’d say read Eleanor & Park ASAP — I loved Fangirl too, but E&P definitely had a lot more impact, emotionally, for me.

    • My TBR list seems to expand every week, as soon as I start visiting other people’s TTT posts! And now I’m off to look at yours… Thanks for stopping by!

    • I really do love all of these books so much — this ended up being a fun list to put together! I think a lot of people who don’t normally read YA end up surprised by how moving/special some of these books can be. 🙂

    • Attachments was great too, and it was cool to see that the author has a great touch with adult fiction as well as with YA. Eleanor & Park is really special — I hope you get a chance to read it! Thanks for visiting. 🙂

  1. I too have been scarred by the Twilight books and yet to recover from the agonizing experience. I still love young adult books though, Eragon being one of my favorites. The Blue Sword is also pretty cool.

    • LOL. All those poor people suffering from Twilight scarring! I’ve never read the Eragon books, although I have the first one on my shelf. I suppose I should give it a try! Thanks for stopping by. 🙂

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