Hi everyone! I’m back with another Top Ten Tuesday for you all this week, courtesy of the lovely ladies over at The Broke and The Bookish. This week’s topic was meant to be Ten Bookish People You Should Follow On Social Media, but I found that topic kind of difficult, I can think of a couple of authors that I really like following on Twitter and a few bloggers as well, but not enough to make this topic worthwhile doing. So instead, I decided to do Top Ten Books I Think Should Be Required Reading For Teens, as I saw it in the archives and it was a topic I was planning on doing in my discussion posts anyway, so I thought doing it this week would kill two birds with one stone. It’s a topic I’ve always wanted to do, because I always wish that I’d been assigned books in school that I was actually interested in reading and were more contemporary rather than the endless list of classics that we were always given to read. So here we go, the books that I would assign for teens to read, if I was a teacher:
- The Book Thief-Markus Zusak
I put this in here, not just because it’s one of my favourite books (which it is), but because it’s a beautiful book, with lots of themes to analyse (because we all know how English teachers love analysing themes of books!) and gives a different perspective to WWII than the one that we usually get. I reckon it would be a really interesting book to study and you could have a lot of great discussions about it.
2. Thirteen Reasons Why-Jay Asher
From a behavioural standpoint, I think this is a really great one for teenagers to study, as it’s all about how the little things that we do affect the people around us, it’s a really important lesson to learn and I think especially for teenagers, since I think we all know that teenagers can be incredibly mean, without necessarily considering the consequences of that, so this book is a great one for teaching that I think, and again, could inspire some interesting discussions.
3. Between Shades of Grey-Ruta Sepetys
This would be a great one for History class as it talks about the Second World War, but from a perspective that you never really get to see, from the point of view of a young girl from Lithuania when it was occupied by Stalin, who along with her family is exiled. It’s a beautiful book and I really learned a lot, so I reckon it would be a great book for teens to read.
4. My Sister’s Keeper-Jodi Picoult
I’ll admit that this may be a slightly biased choice of mine, since this is one of my absolute favourite books. It’s not written for teenagers, but it’s one of the more accessible of Jodi Picoult’s books I think. It’s a great story, with beautiful writing and the ethical and moral dilemmas brought up in the book would make for some brilliant discussions.
5. Hate List-Jennifer Brown
This is a great book in terms of character study as the entire book is basically a character study of Valerie Leftman, the main character and it’s also great for ambiguous characters as Val is not entirely good or evil and neither is her boyfriend Nick, even though he is a school shooter. It’s another great book for discussing the topic of bullying, as Nick’s entire reasons for doing what he did are centred around bullying.
6. Nineteen Minutes-Jodi Picoult
This is another school shooting based book, and it’s kind of similar to Hate List, though personally, I liked this one better, but I still think it would be a good book to study as again, it discusses the ramifications of bullying which is a topic I think is important to teenagers.
7. Cross My Heart-Carmen Reid
Another WWII based novel but from a different perspective this time, it’s about the Belgian resistance, which again was something that I never really knew about until reading this book, so I reckon it would be a really great one to study, as I love it when books teach you something new!
8. Dangerous Girls-Abigail Haas
Seriously, you could have an entire discussion about this book just based on the ending! There are so many things that you can talk about with this book, the psychology, theories about who committed the murder, Elise and Anna’s toxic relationship, the list goes on, it would be very entertaining to study.
9. The Unwind Dystology-Neal Shusterman
Yes, all of them! I’m sure no one is surprised that I included these here, as it is one of my favourite series, and you could have so many interesting discussions about this series, about the pro life/pro choice debate, organ transplants, black market organ harvesting, what makes a person a person, the list goes on, there are endless interesting things to talk about with regards to this series, it would be so much fun to study!
10. The Hunger Games Trilogy-Suzanne Collins
I would have liked English so much more if we’d studied books like this! There’s so many great themes and interesting characters to discuss, it’s such an interesting, complex series, that would be really fun to study.
11. Noughts and Crosses-Malorie Blackman
Such a great book! For discussing the topic of racism, Malorie Blackman’s reverse racism dystopia would be the perfect choice, it got me thinking about things that I had never thought about before, plus Sephy and Callum’s romance is one of the most beautiful, heartbreaking things I have ever read.
I could probably go on, but I’m going to stop there before I get too crazy with this! Seriously, I could probably list like a gazillion books that I think all teenagers should read! What books do you think should be required reading for teenagers? Anything you’ve read now that you wish would have been taught to you at school? Let me know! Next week’s topic is ten books every X should read (so it won’t be teenagers!), I haven’t decided what the X for me is going to be yet, so you’ll just have to wait until next week to see. That’s next week, but in the meantime, I will have my review of Cinder up for you guys soon and also my first discussion post of April.