ArmchairBEA Day 5: Young Adult / Middle Grade

Middle Grade/Young Adult Our final genre of discussion is one that we know is a popular one these days: books for the younger crowd, from middle grade to young adult. If you do not normally talk about this genre on your site, maybe you want to feature books that you remember impacting you during this stage in your life. If this is where you tend to gravitate, maybe you want to list your favorites, make recommendations based on genres, or feature some titles that you are excited to read coming later this year.

The Young Adult genre is very important to me, mainly because I am a young adult. This genre allows me to read more mature books than MG and less mature than Adult. I don’t have to worry about inappropriate or terms I won’t understand while reading in this genre. The books that I read I can relate to and learn from as well. Overall without YA I would be stuck searching even harder through the bookstore and having to take risks on more books than I should.

So, I decided I would make a little top recommended YA books and top recommended MG books to go along with this post.

Top Middle Grade

(click on the picture for its Goodreads page)

Somebody Else's Summer Ginger Pye (The Pyes, #1) The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #1) Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Harry Potter, #1) The Report Card Goose Chase I'd Tell You I Love You, But Then I'd Have to Kill You (Gallagher Girls, #1)

Somebody Else’s Summer by Jean Little – my mother bought me this book when I was in grade 3 I then read it for a book report. I hadn’t read much back then other than Junie B. Jones or Judy Moody so this book was a pleasant change. I think I ended up re-reading this book nearly six times; it is that good. The premise of the story is two girls changing lives for the summer; there is no magic involved. There was just something about the idea of being someone else that was so fascinating to me at the time. Also, the author, Jean Little, is blind; how amazing is that.

Ginger Pye by Eleanor Estes is my favourite book of all time. I had found it in my mother’s room, I think she had bought it a long time ago and had forgotten about it, I was so interested in the fact that pie was spelled Pye and that there was a dog on the front; this was now during my animal ark book faze. I had another book report and so I picked this book for it. It surprised me, the mystery it had and who the man with the yellow hat was. It also was the first book to make me cry, and I won’t share why (spoilers). This book was then chosen to be another book report (yes I did do two book reports on it, but the teachers didn’t know each other so I was safe). Out of all the Middle Grade books I am recommending this would be the most recommended one.

The Percy Jackson series by Rick Riodan was introduced to me by a friend and we read the series together and we still are reading it’s spin-off series today. The premise of Greek Mythology and Half-bloods is what drew me in, but the humor filled pages is what kept me reading till this very day. A lot of the wit in the books is still funny today, this series is a must read. It deserves it’s hype and the movies, not so much.

Harry Potter by J. K. Rowling, now I’m not going to explain anything about this book, it is too well known for that. I’m just going to tell you what got me reading it. For most of my life, well nearly all of it, I knew about this world. My brother started reading them when the first movie was announced. I was born in 1998 the same year the first book came out in America if I am not mistaken. So, I am technically as old as the book on my shelf. Now, back to the books. I believe I read the second book first in grade four, after or before I saw the third movie in theaters (my first time being old enough to see the movie in theaters, it was a big night for me). My brother told me not to bother with the first book, he said it was pointless (boy is he ever wrong) so I read the second and then immediately after read the first and then re-read the second and I went all the way down till the end. I should mention my failed try at reading the last book first, but I don’t remember when that was, or why I did it, I just knew I had read the first three pages of the last book before I read anything else in the series. Boy, this is getting long, but anyway, Harry Potter will always have a place in my heart.

The Report Card by Andrew Clements is the first book I ever got at a school book fair. It is up there with Somebody Else’s Summer on the book with the most re-reads on my shelf (when I was younger I liked to re-read things). This book made me feel okay about being smarter than other kids, but it also made me not want to take that special test the smart kids take to see if they should skip some grades. Overall though, it was a memorable read from my MG years.

Goose Chase by Patrice Kindl is a book bought as a MG and read as a YA. I bought it because it looked pretty, but I never read it till last summer. And to say it surprised me was an understatement. I read the book without knowing anything, but by the end I had loved it. It is a fairy-tale re-telling that includes many different fairy-tales in one. It is a quick, light and fun read. I totally recommend it to fairy-tale re-telling fans.

Last, but not least, The Gallagher Girls series by Ally Carter. A boarding school for spies that is all I have to say. It is amazing and now I’ll get onto my history with it. I wasn’t the one to buy the book, it was my sister who had bought the second book, but she never read it. I had snuck it from her room one time and read it for myself, and I enjoyed it. The series gets better as it goes, the second is my favourite, and I really recommend it to anyone.

Top Young Adult

(click on the cover to be taken to it’s Goodreads page)

Paper Towns Hate List Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass, #1) Prophecy of the Sisters (Prophecy of the Sisters, #1) A Great and Terrible Beauty (Gemma Doyle, #1) The Princess Diaries (The Princess Diaries, #1) The Naming (The Books of Pellinor, #1)

Paper Towns by John Green is the second book I read by John Green, the first being The Fault in Our Stars. I am really excited about Nat being in the movie for this book that I cannot even think of how I got this book and why I would recommend it. But, if you liked TFIOS, you’ll love this one.

Hate List ny Jennifer Brown is another book I ‘stole’ from my sister. My copy of it is a little ripped up because my sister doesn’t care much for her books. Anyway, this book is really interesting. It is about a school shooting and a girls struggle to get over it as her boyfriend was the one who shot everyone. I loved it and I hope you will too.

The Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas is just amazing. It has the most bad ass female protagonist of all time. I was honestly hesitant to read this book, the cover scared me off not going to lie. However, now I actually like the cover. It is weird how things like that can happen. Read this book and all of it’s others. The third one Heir of Fire comes out this year so be ready for that!

The Prophecy of the Sisters by Michelle Zink is the best book about angels I have ever read. It is also a great historical fiction read as well. The only reason I had bought this was because I wanted to pick a book off the bottom of the bookshelf at Chapters and so there it is. I recommend this to anyone who loves the next book I am about to mention.

A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray is a book my mother had bought that I couldn’t get myself to read because I thought it would give me nightmares, it did but I survived. This series is another bad ass story and a great historical fiction / fantasy read as well. I own all three books accept my third one is that ugly re-printed copy because my mom had lent it out to a friend and I haven’t gotten it back in about five years. If you haven’t read this book yet, do it, Libba Bray is an amazing author.

The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot is a long story. Long ago a little girl saw the first movie and dreamed she would find out that she was a princess, like Mia, but those hopes had been long crushed with a shot of reality. The movies definitely did the books jealous. I haven’t read them all just the first three an the last four or three. Meg Cabot is an amazing author and she made me dream that Genovia would be a real place. If you liked the movie, pick up the books, you won’t regret it. (Also, new Princess Diaries books eeeeeeeep!)

The Naming by Alison Croggon is a must read fantasy. I picked this series up because of their size, my mother won’t by me a book unless it is huge. This book is the first high-fantasy that I had ever read, and it pulled me in. Now, I love high-fantasy. If you are a LOTR fan or Throne of Glass, give this book a try.

Please, in the comments tell me your favourite YA or MG read, or give me a recommendation, those are always welcome!

18 thoughts on “ArmchairBEA Day 5: Young Adult / Middle Grade

  1. patricia says:

    that’s great, i love your way of writing too. hi i’m a newbie, and it would be great if you checked out my blog – i follow back! ( ps nice blog ) kisses. x


  2. Deb Atwood says:

    I love Ginger Pye, too, but my favorite Eleanor Estes book is The Middle Moffat. I’d encourage you to give it a try. Two other books for young people I love are Walk Two Moons and A Single Shard.


  3. Sullivan McPig says:

    Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan. It’s funny and suspenseful.
    The Hallowed Ones by Laura Bickle. A horror/thriller YA with Amish and vampires
    Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder. A great YA Fantasy


  4. Kristen H. (@bookgoil) says:

    So many great books. The only one I’d disagree with is Throne of Glass, but I seem to be in a minority of people who could not stand that book. I’ll be checking out some of the titles I haven’t read yet, you have a lot of great suggestions!


  5. Alisha (@MyNeedToRead) says:

    Thank you for this list! I’ve forgotten how great middle grade fiction can be. There was a period of time in which I taught at a middle school/high school and was thus exposed to a lot of great series/titles. But this list will definitely help get me back in the groove!


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