Saturday, August 21, 2010

YA Top 100

I grabbed this list from Persnickety Snarks List of Top 100 YA Novels (based on reader poll). Let's see how it looks.  I see lots of current favorites, and not too many classics. I'm seeing a lot of Sarah Dessen on this list -- clearly I should take a closer look at what she's written.  I've bolded everything that I've read, italicized things I started reading but didn't finish, and linked to things I've reviewed.

1. The Hunger Games - Suzanne Collins
2. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone - J.K. Rowling
3. To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
4. Speak - Laurie Halse Anderson

5. Northern Lights - Philip Pullman
6. The Truth About Forever - Sarah Dessen
7. The Book Thief - Markus Zusak
8. The Outsiders - S.E. Hinton
9. Twilight - Stephenie Meyer
10. This Lullaby - Sarah Dessen
11. Looking for Alaska - John Green
12. Just Listen - Sarah Dessen
13. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - J.K. Rowling
14. Little Women - Louisa May Alcott

15. City of Bones - Cassandra Clare
16. On the Jellicoe Road - Melina Marchetta
17. The Catcher in the Rye - J.D. Salinger
18. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban - J.K. Rowling
19. The Perks of Being a Wallflower - Stephen Chbosky

20. Along for the Ride - Sarah Dessen
21. Shiver - Maggie Stiefvater
22. Vampire Academy - Richelle Mead
23. Graceling - Kristin Cashore

24. Thirteen Reasons Why - Jay Asher
25. Sloppy Firsts - Megan McCafferty
26. The Lord of the Rings - J.R.R. Tolkien
27. Alanna: The First Adventure - Tamora Pierce
28. Ender's Game - Orson Scott Card
29. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince - J.K. Rowling
30. Uglies - Scott Westerfeld
31. A Great and Terrible Beauty - Libba Bray

32. Tomorrow, When the War Began - John Marsden
33. The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks - E. Lockhart
34. Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
35. The Westing Game - Ellen Raskin

36. Paper Towns - John Green
37. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire - J.K. Rowling
38. Catching Fire - Suzanne Collins

39. A Tree Grows In Brooklyn - Betty Smith
40. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian - Sherman Alexie
41. Lock and Key - Sarah Dessen
42. The Amber Spyglass - Philip Pullman (I read the His Dark Materials series out of order... a terrible mistake.)
43. Evernight - Claudia Gray
44. Sabriel - Garth Nix
45. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix - J.K. Rowling
46. Beautiful Creatures - Kami Garcia, Margaret Stohl (Just finished reading this... it was so good!)
47. Forever - Judy Blume
48. I Capture the Castle - Dodie Smith (True confession: I only read this because I heard it was one of J.K. Rowling's favorite books. I loved it, though.)
49. Ella Enchanted - Gail Carson Levine
50. The Princess Diaries - Meg Cabot
51. Stargirl - Jerry Spinelli
52. Howl's Moving Castle - Diana Wynne Jones
53. The Dark is Rising - Susan Cooper

54. Hush, Hush - Becca Fitzpatrick (Started this one and just couldn't get into it, not sure why, as it really seems like the kind of thing I usually read. I'll probably give it another try at some point.)
55. Saving Francesca - Melina Marchetta
56. Second Helpings - Megan McCafferty
57. Dreamland - Sarah Dessen
58. Eclipse - Stephenie Meyer
59. Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist - Rachel Cohn, David Levithan
60. Fire - Kristin Cashore
61. The Chocolate War - Robert Cormier
62. Weetzie Bat - Francesca Lia Block
63. The Diary of a Young Girl - Anne Frank

64. Looking for Alibrandi - Melina Marchetta
65. How I Live Now - Meg Rosoff
66. City of Glass - Cassandra Clare (It is on my "to be read" list, though.)
67. Keeping the Moon - Sarah Dessen
68. Breaking Dawn - Stephenie Meyer
69. Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging - Louise Rennison
70. If I Stay - Gayle Forman
71. The King of Attolia - Megan Whalen Turner (I read The Thief and always meant to get back to the rest of the series)
72. Wintergirls - Laurie Halse Anderson (Another item on my "to be read" list. I saw Laurie Halse Anderson give a wonderful talk about the book, and her other writing.)
73. Beauty: A Retelling of the Story of Beauty and the Beast - Robin McKinley
74. The Blue Sword - Robin McKinley
75. Feed - M.T. Anderson
76. The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants - Ann Brashares
77. Go Ask Alice - Anonymous (Having grown up in an era of "Just Say No" and helicopter parenting, I found the premise of lots of unsupervised time and easy access to drugs difficult if not impossible to wrap my head around, still, a very interesting read)
78. Wicked Lovely - Melissa Marr
79. Lord of the Flies - William Golding

80. Someone Like You - Sarah Dessen
81. The Forest of Hands and Teeth - Carrie Ryan
82. Jacob Have I Loved - Katherine Paterson
83. The Knife of Never Letting Go - Patrick Ness (Just finished reading this... it was so good!)
84. Poison Study - Maria V. Snyder
85. Shadow Kiss - Richelle Mead
86. The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle - Avi
87. An Abundance of Katherines - John Green
(Started reading this and just couldn't get into it... I have yet to join the cult of John Green.)
88. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
89. A Ring of Endless Light - Madeleine L'Engle
90. Glass Houses - Rachel Caine
91. The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation, Volume I: The Pox Party - M.T. Anderson
92. Walk Two Moons - Sharon Creech
93. Whale Talk - Chris Crutcher
94. Perfect Chemistry - Simone Elkeles
95. Going Too Far - Jennifer Echols
96. The Last Song - Nicholas Sparks (Very surprised to see this one on the list!)
97. Before I Fall - Lauren Oliver
98. Hatchet - Gary Paulsen
99. The Pigman - Paul Zindel
100. The Hero and the Crown - Robin McKinley


  1. Before I Fall is great, so are all the Sarah Dessens, and though I might be stoned by other librarians, John Green is good, but uneven. The Book Thief is amazing and I really like Melina Marchetta, but I couldn't get into Jellicoe Road. That is a really great list though.

  2. I know! Terrific list. I nearly counted Jellicoe Road as a started, but didn't finish, because I checked it out from the library several times, and never even opened the cover. I remember it getting very high praise at the time it came out.
    I'll make it my mission to catch up on reading some Sarah Dessen (it looks like she's written lots)... as soon as I get caught up on my current pile of ARCs.

  3. I've read 49 and many of the books on this list are on my list. The best book on the list that you haven't read (my opinion): The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak. It is clutch-your-chest good. Thanks for sharing.

  4. I am intrigued by The Book Thief. It's one of those that I've been meaning to get to. I think I put it on the back burner because we had so many adult book club members who wanted to read it!

  5. Hi Madigan.

    My personal recommendation is that you read Northern Lights - it is debatable whether to call it fantasy, but it's world-building is something to behold. You must read Jellicoe Road too - words can't describe how I feel about it.

    Thanks for discussing the list. I helped out with adding up the poll’s votes, so I've been interested at what people have been saying about it. Just briefly on your comment about "classics" - my view is that YA is a relatively recent category, so there isn't a large consensus on what the classic books are yet. Hence currently popular books will be prominent, and in the long run, we shall see what books hold their place.

    Looks like you've read your fair share of YA. It is hoped that the poll will run in 2011. So keep an eye out - I'm sure your Top 10 list would be welcome. The more the merrier!

  6. I debated italicizing Jellicoe Road as a "started but didn't finish" book. I checked it out three separate times from the library, and never got started on it! I heard great things about it... my TBR list is just toooo long though. I'm sure I will get around to reading it eventually.

    Ah, classics! I guess I should clarify. By "classics" I was referring to those famous works of great literature commonly assigned in high school English classes.
    "YA classics" I'd say, started in the late 70's, early 80's. Lots of "problem/issue novels" The kind of stuff that Lizzie Skurnick at is an expert on.

    I think we're in a Golden Age of YA publishing right now! It's a good time to be a YA reader!!!

  7. Jellicoe Road is amazing, it takes a while to get into the story but then it's one of those books you'll find yourself thinking about.
    About Megan Whalen Turner if you read The Thief and weren't too happy about it, you should read The Queen of Attolia, it's so good and very romantic

  8. I loved The Thief! Loved it. I read the sequel, The Queen of Attolia... and then I lost track of the series, and never finished it. So, I've yet to read The King of Attolia and A Conspiracy of Kings.



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