top ten tuesdays! (02)

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the Broke and the Bookish. If you love lists
and wracking your brain for answers, then this is the meme for you!

Top Ten Books You Believe Should Be Required Reading For Teens:

1. Harry Potter (series) by J.K. Rowling: I'm not just mentioning them because they're some of my favorite books, but more because of the message that's in them. Not just about good vs. evil, but about seeing past what's in front of you and not giving up. And if a person gets hooked on them, well, there are worse things!

2. Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes: Oh, this book. It broke my heart into so many pieces, but the hope in this book is so startling and beautiful that it's worth the inevitable pain.

3. They Cage the Animals at Night by Jennings Michael Burch: This is a book that I read over and over again when I was younger. Partially because I couldn't believe it was possible, partially because I was extraordinarily happy every time I neared the ending. 

4. Stay by Deb Caletti: When I told a friend about this book, we both agreed that it would be required reading for any children we might have. Stay is about freeing yourself from an abusive relationship and it it is more than okay to stand up for yourself when you are not being treated right.

5. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley: This is my absolute favorite book. It's more than just dystopian/utopian ideas, it's about potential and individuality and really what it means to be human. For me, this has to be on any list.

6. Unwind by Neal Shusterman: I'm curious to know if this is required reading for any school, although I reckon it would be challenged by people. The message in this book is so incredibly strong that I really can't stress enough that this be required reading for any person, not just teenagers.

7. L'├ętranger (The Stranger) by Albert Camus: To be honest, I haven't actually read this book in English, but the sentiment is the same in any language. A great introduction and example of existentialist literature.

8. Night by Elie Wiesel: This one speaks for itself.

9. A Journey to the Centre of the Earth by Jules Verne: Another book that I read over and over again. Pure adventure - I mean, come on, if you could, wouldn't you want to go to the centre of the Earth?

10. The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis: While I feel this one is often geared more toward younger readers, it would probably serve older students well to read it considering the ideas discussed are still relevant.

There are some other books that I left off that I'm going to toss at the bottom because I either didn't want to scare kids away or because I wanted to try and choose a different topic: Fahrenheit 451 (Bradbury), Crime and Punishment (Dostoevsky), Anna Karenina (Tolstoy, and another favorite of mine), The Scarlet Letter (Hawthorne) many. Books are vital and they don't stop at a list of 10.

11 comments on "top ten tuesdays! (02)"

Unknown wrote: Tue Jul 19, 03:26:00 AM

Some great books on your list, and a few that I've been meaning to read for awhile now.

The Phantom Paragrapher wrote: Tue Jul 19, 03:51:00 AM

Some good ones here , I went with more Contemporary Edgier Teen Novels :)
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Jan von Harz wrote: Tue Jul 19, 08:41:00 AM

Terrific list. I love the inclusion of Unwind, and Flowers for Algernon. Both are fav of mine and address issues I think are important to address during the teen years.

We Heart YA wrote: Tue Jul 19, 08:53:00 AM

Whoops, we've only read a couple of these... :( Guess we better get on that! Great list.

NatalieSap wrote: Tue Jul 19, 11:48:00 AM

Oy, how did I leave Brave New World off my list?! I may have to go fix that...

Sarah wrote: Tue Jul 19, 12:14:00 PM

I just got Flowers for Algernon from the library, so I'm glad you mentioned it! I've never read it before.

Anne@HeadFullofBooks wrote: Tue Jul 19, 01:12:00 PM

I just read Brave New World this year for the first time and I think that book really news a fabulous teacher to help students get past all the sex into the symbolism in the book. Good list!

Enbrethiliel wrote: Tue Jul 19, 03:49:00 PM


I'm so pleased to see Neal Shusterman on your list! =D He is one of my favourite writers ever!

I haven't read Unwind yet, but if I had to recommend one of his titles, it would be Full Tilt. It has so many themes that teenagers could relate to, and while it's psychologically spot-on, it mixes a lot of fantasy in with the realism.

LBC wrote: Tue Jul 19, 10:16:00 PM

I feel like there is a Brave New World camp and a 1984 camp of readers. I also think I kind of am just imagining it. I've read parts of Brave New World a few times, but I've never finished it.

Come visit me at The Scarlet Letter.

Christy @ TheReaderBee wrote: Tue Jul 19, 10:45:00 PM

Harry Potter is a must read for teens! Great list!

Carolina M. Valdez Schneider wrote: Wed Jul 20, 03:58:00 AM

Super choices!

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