Sunday, May 24, 2009

The Sunday Salon: YA

I've spent the past couple of weeks immersed in various books with the "YA" label as I search for the perfect ones for a middle school literature circle I'll be teaching. I have tremendously appreciated various suggestions from readers. Please keep them coming.

So far I've read and reviewed:
Stargirl (review here)
Ties That Bind, Ties That Break (review here)

And read (or re-read) but not yet reviewed:
The Diary of a Young Girl (Anne Frank)
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas

And I'm currently re-reading Where the Red Fern Grows. I've already determined that we'll read this one. I'd love to do The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, but I am concerned about reading too many sad books. I'm not sure what the balance should be between intensely sad books like these two and more uplifting books. The first two books fall into the "uplifting" category, but they aren't great choices for this class for various reasons.

And so my quest continues. Ideas?

9 comments:

crochet lady said...

What about one of Lois Lowry's books, like The Giver or The Messenger? My boys (15 and 12) have read them both and really liked them.

Hoopla said...

Princess Academy? It has enough action that even the boys shouldn't be disappointed, and it will teach them not to judge a book by its title. :D

Sarah

gautami tripathy said...

I am thinking of reading more of YA books. I read one or two a month.

Here is my TSS post

susan said...

First thing I noticed is that you're list consists of all realistic fiction (my preference) and for kids, dated titles. I real these aren't old books but I've learned from teen bloggers that young readers are very date conscious. Not to say they won't read older titles but they gravitate towards new releases.

A great resource to check out would be Young Adult Book Central blog and A Year In Reading blog and the Brain Lair. KB is a middle school librarian. Keep in mind YA has evolved and a lot of what is currently publish leans towards an older audience. Better to look for blogs and bloggers who specify that they review middle grade fiction.

Literary Feline said...

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas is one I really hope to get to this year. I understand your not wanting to do too many sad books. I wish you luck with your continued search!

Have a great week!

Karyn said...

Have you read either of Laura Resau's books? I first saw her book _Red Glass_ mentioned in the Chinaberry catalog. I read it and really liked it and then read her other book, _What the Moon Saw_. I'm not sure what ages you'll be working with- Red Glass would probably be for a slightly older audience. I really liked that both books dealt with difficult topics and situations but left me with a feeling of hope rather than crushing depression- if that makes any sense. As with any book, YMMV, but I really enjoyed these and I haven't really seen them mentioned many places.

Staci said...

Ooh, I see a few good recommendations by other posters:
The Giver series is excellent and so is Princess Academy. A really good non-fiction selection is Zlata's Diary: A Child's Life in Wartime Sarajevo.

SmallWorld at Home said...

Thanks for all the recommendations! Keep them coming!

Ana-Maria said...

Nice blog.