Posted in Books, Writing

5 (More) YA Books to Read if You Want to be a Writer


Last week I took a look at five amazing YA books that have inspired my writing considerably. Today, I wanted to look at five more that I adore and think you should definitely take a look at!

1. The Miseducation of Cameron Post, by Emily Danforth

This is a fascinating, observant novel, written with great care and honesty and passion. It reads like a big, sweeping John Steinbeck book — except instead of a story about an Oklahoma family traveling to California, this one’s about a teenage lesbian in rural Montana. If you haven’t checked this one out yet, I’d highly recommend you give it a look!

2. The Hate U Give, by Angie Thomas

Thomas’s book was the best-selling young adult novel of 2017, and it’s not difficult to see why. It takes on a topical subject — the Black Lives Matter movement — and infuses the subject with a compelling narrative told from the perspective of a relatable, flawed, and fascinating protagonist named Starr. The terrific film, which came out last fall, is worth watching as well!

3. Speak, by Laurie Halse Anderson

Anderson’s young adult novel has been immensely popular to younger readers in the twenty years since it was published, becoming required reading at many high schools and forever near the top of bookseller charts in children’s literature. I was impressed and enthralled by this book, particularly in the striking voice of the protagonist. Anderson is masterful at beautifully capturing a teenager’s voice, never a moment I felt her own author voice creeping in.

4. The Girl From the Well, by Rin Chupeco

I wanted to find one genuinely terrifying young adult horror novel to read recently, and The Girl from the Well definitely fit the bill! This novel offers that wonderful mix of quiet creepiness and action-packed terror, Chupeco rarely stopping to let the characters catch their breaths before moving on to the next horrifying moment. The eerie scenes and chilling revelations always leave a mark.

5. Golden Boy, by Abigail Tarttelin

I love so much about Golden Boy, which tells the story of an intersex teenager going through the difficulty of adolescence, and Tartellin’s use of the multiple POV in first person, present tense, is indeed one of the most striking things about it. I’ve read multiple POV in other novels before, but what Tartellin does is particularly impressive because she balances six points-of-view and brings complexity and a sharp, unique voice to each one of them. I’ve read this book twice now, and I give it my highest recommendation!

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