Youth / Young Adult Fiction Book Recommendations?

I'm curious ~ what youth / young adult fiction books you and/or your patrons are excited about? I have ideas for future purchase orders, but am interested in hearing from this great forum your top recommendations - newer or older titles.


Our Youth Collection is for ages 12 to 18. We currently have an extremely small youth collection that I'm excited about building upon. We have some fiction series that I'm working on completing (some missing books) & 1 non-series fiction book. I truly believe that as I work on our small collection & help bring life to it, we'll have more youth readers as I'm familiar with some of the youth.


So what are your top recommendations fiction books (series or non-series) - by title or author?  Feel free to share why you like a certain author or title.


Thank you!   



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  • I'm letting you all know that this list of books for youth are still very helpful.

    I so appreciate the backup that this forum brings. 

  • I recently attended the Dallas Co. Librarian's meeting with Ruth Turner who brought the program.  She handedout comprehensive lists of her recommendations for each age group and under SIMPLY GOOD READINGI  she had  Robin Jones Gunn for girls of all ages.  Then she wrote, "Christy Miller" series and "Sierra Jensen" series (always good for tweens)  Ruth Turner is the librarians at Truett Memorial Library at First Baptist,Dallas.  She also listed Lori Copeland (Love and Laughter) and said "good for teens too"  Also, Lisa T. Bergren   Remnant Series: good for teens.

  • Debbie, I don't know if you'll see this or not. Also, please keep in mind that I'm not near as experienced as others here. I write this only as something to think about. Basically, I've been trying to observe people's paths at our church and talking with people as to what works for them. Hope something here helps you. Even though we think we don't have the most ideal situation, I believe it's possible to think of the pros and work with it.    


    What I'm working with:

    We chose to go with "youth" because our church refers to people from 7th grade up as "The Youth". 7th & 8th graders are "Junior Youth" and High Schoolers are "Senior Youth". I don't think that's official, but that's how we refer to our young people. So media for 13 years and up are labeled "Youth".  But I like Teen as well.  Actually, that's more specific. 


    We just moved into a new building as of last year & still have settling in to do. Plans are when $ is available to build shelving for our front library room (which doubles as a conference room). Then I hope we can move our Family Audiovisual Section in the same room as the Adult & Youth Collections.   The reason being is that I see our patrons crossing over as far as checking out media. What I mean by this is that Adults check out Youth books and Youth check out Adults books - all this with parental consent of course.


    Fortunately or Unfortunately -be that as it may: Our media is displayed openly. We don't have a separate room. I came to think of it as a person's library at home, only it's a shared resource at church. So we have some media in 2 Sunday School rooms as well as the front main library room. Junior & Child DVDs/Audios, Family Audiovisual Collection plus Child Book Collection are in the Sunday School rooms. The remainder is in the front library room. 

    Blessings to you all as you minister to others, Linda






    • Yes, Linda, I saw it. I appreciate all of the advice I can get. Our young people are also called Youth. It would make sense to stay with that. 

  • I am printing this page! I have been so clueless on what to do with our "Junior Fiction" section. The first thing will be to change the name to "Teen" or "Youth". 

    The next thing will be to move their books to another part of the Library. (Slight dilemma-where?, when space is limited) As of now they are over the "Easy" books. If they were to come in they would have to compete with the younger children. 

    Third, I will use this page when I am purchasing new books. Lots of ideas. 

  • Would suggest two authors:

    = Krista McGee  (writes for teens)

    Starring Me

    Right Where I Belong



    First Date

    - Chautona Havig writes for all ages 

    The Annals of Wynnewood _ a 3 book series for 9-12 year olds (Shadows and Secrets, Clothed in Secrets and Beneath the Cloak)

    The Not-so-Fairy Tales -- 2 stand-alones  Princess Paisley and Everard  for older teens+ and young adults  (Similar in setting and theme but not connected.  Noted some of our teen boys taking Everard but shivering at the thought of a Princess.)

    Havig's  "adult fiction" is well-written,  fun, sound doctrinally and thematically.  "Moms" among the reviewers on Amazon frequently comment that they are glad their teen daughters can safely read these books.  Many of the main characters are 18-25 years of age and most of them make decisions in line with scripture.  Some of the books clearly show the consequences of bad choices.  The books aren't preachy -- the characters just seem to live as though obedience to the Word is the normal/usual thing to do.

    Books with younger "stars" include

    The Rockland Chronicles (grouping/series of single books and series that intersect with characters and locales)

    Discovering Hope  (college students: Strong model for "guarding your heart" without killing opportunity to share Christ.   No "missionary dating" involved)

    Argosy Junction 

    Aggie's Inheritance (series of 3 books within the Rockland Series so far) Aggie's a new college grad when you meet her: Ready or Not, For Keeps, Here We Come

    Past Forward (series of 6 books -- all with same title/cover but so worth the confusion!)

    The only book available in her House of Dreams series is Prairie and it, too, would probably appeal to younger readers.   Excerpts/trailers of her books are available at

    • Ah Sue! What a thoughtful list of recommendations. I know that I'll be coming back to your post & others here this year (and maybe later) as I help to build up our library collection. Thank you bunches!

  • Wonderful discussion for YA & Teen reading  I hope the listing sparked some interest.  I just purchased the Rock Harbor Search & Rescue series.  I think that if we search for quality YA books, we will find.  I also from time to time ASK the Teens what they've been reading and want to see in the church library.  I also let 7-8 graders check out adult fiction books.  I've read every adult fiction book before I put it in the collection.  There can be nothing but positive results for letting the youth stretch their minds.  I have an 8th grader that has read all the YA books and when I checked with her Mom, she bounce over to adult fiction quickly.  I also ask youth to do some book reviews.  Don't always expect a 100% return to those that ask.  They live busy lives, be patient. 

    Enjoy the list!  Let me know if you need more ideas.  Bev

    • Thanks again Bev. It looks like I really need to look into the Rock Harbor Search & Rescue series.


       I love how you involve the youth in decision making & how you encourage teens to be part of the library.   

  • Linda I too am glad you posted this question. We want to grow our children's section which I believe includes the youth. Thanks to all who replied. The replies are all helpful.

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