The Best YA You Haven’t Read

Kelly of YAnnabe is hosting a blog blitz to highlight our favorite YA titles that need a little more buzz. Check out her round-up of the Best YA You Haven’t Read for bloggers’ lists of books that deserve a second look.

Relatively new, and not as well known as they should be:
Unsigned Hype by Booker T. Mattison. Semicolon review here. “Tory’s rise to fame as a rap/hip hop producer is fraught with temptations and with danger to his reputation and even his life. But Tory’s “moms” is praying for him, and he finds a friend who keeps him grounded.” For those who are looking for more books featuring People of Color, this one ought to be on the radar.

I really didn’t think Secret Keeper by Mitali Perkins got nearly enough attention when it came out last January, even though everyone loves Mitali and her blog. Semicolon review here.

Isle of Swords by Thomas Wayne Batson. Semicolon review here. I loved this 2007 pirate adventure, and it has a sequel, Isle of Fire that’s just as good.

The Homeschool Liberation League by Lucy Frank. Semicolon review here.

After by Amy Efaw. Semicolon review here.

Oldies but Goodies:
Escape from Egypt by Sonia Levitin. Semicolon review here.
The Faraway Lurs by Harry Behn. Semicolon review here.
A Winter’s Love by Madeleine L’Engle. Semicolon review here.
The Moves Make the Man by Bruce Brooks. One of my favorite YA titles of all time is a basketball book about two boys. And I don’t even like sports. But this book is about so much more than just sports; it’s about friendship and authenticity . . . Well, read it , and tell me what you think it’s about.
The Hawk and the Dove by Penelope Wilcock. This book and its sequels should have sold a million copies, but it’s a quiet little book, not one to jump onto the classic or best-seller list by itself. The books are made up of stories that a mother tells her daughters about a monastery and the monks who live there. All I can say is that’s a deceptively simplistic description, and the book has some profound insights into the meaning of mercy, and vocation, and repentance, and lots of other stuff–not to mention some great, very sticky (as in, will-stick-with-you-for-a-long-time), stories.

12 thoughts on “The Best YA You Haven’t Read

  1. Thanks for the list and the link, Sherry. I’ll be sure to check some of these out! 🙂

  2. I remember seeing The Homeschool Liberation League in the catalog and thinking it looked good. Going to check out your review.

  3. I’m embarrassed to say that I have 3 copies of The Moves Make the Man in my media center but I’ve never read it. What’s worse is that I’m from North Carolina and the book is set in Wilmington. I must rectify this situation.

  4. Let’s hear it for Homeschool Liberation League! I reviewed that one also – I wish I could give it to every teacher and every parent and every kid for a non-biased view of one girl’s experience with homeschooling. As far as I know, it’s the first middle grade novel that doesn’t portray homeschoolers as A. members of a cult B. ex-members of a cult C. their parents were/are hippies or D. their parents are forcibly homeschooling them.

  5. I love the sound of The Homeschool Liberation League just from the title!

    Great list. I like how it was simply laid out & easy to read thru!

  6. I’m totally with you on Secret Keeper. I loved the book, and hardly anyone’s read it.

  7. I am looking forward to trying some of these new books! I always love to read new authors and am just re-entering the YA genre. Thanks for these great tips!

  8. Have never heard of The Homeschool Liberation League before, but I definitely remember reading some of Lucy Frank’s other books as a teen. I’m going to have to track that one down! Glad to see she is still writing.

  9. Pirate adventure! Yes, please!

  10. These are ALL new to me! Great list!

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