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Book suggestion for middle-schooler?

Posted by pantherian on 2015.02.02 at 21:19
Hello, everybody. I was hoping I could get some help in finding a book for a 12 year old girl. I'm trying to get my boyfriends little sister into reading (of course, she thinks it's boring as hell)but she agreed to give it a shot if I could find a good fantasy book.. And when it comes to YA reading, I am at a total loss. She said she likes books that "make you care", or something in the fantasy/sci-fi, or romance genre. As a rule, I refuse to buy her the Twilight series, as I know there are better YA books out there! So if anyone has any suggestions, it'd be so very much appreciated!


apocalypticbob at 2015-02-03 05:21 (UTC) (Link)
The Shiver Series, by Maggie Steifvater. I have often referred to it as Twilight with brains. Actually, anything by Maggie is a good choice.
Reynardo the Red
reynardo at 2015-02-03 09:28 (UTC) (Link)
Tamora Pierce's Lioness quartet, and the Protector of Small Things after that.

See if you can find the comic series "Castle Waiting" by Linda Medley.

If you want "Girl who is fish out of water", Madeleine L'Engle's "A Wrinkle in Time" is still pretty good. It's more SF than Fantasy, but who knows where her mind will go.

More than anything, setting the example, offering to talk about things later, making reading a part of her life. And thank you for helping to entice her into this amazing world.

Edited at 2015-02-03 09:44 am (UTC)
I can only be invisible if you're not looking
ellixis at 2015-02-03 11:21 (UTC) (Link)
The Young Wizards series by Diane Duane is great! It's contemporary fantasy fiction about kids who are secretly wizards. Start with the first one, So You Want To Be A Wizard.

The Redwall series is also great - it's medieval talking animal adventures. Start with Redwall or Mossflower. These are a slightly higher reading level than the Wizards books, I think, but engaging and enjoyable.

If vampires appeal to her, you could try the Darkangel trilogy by Meredith Ann Pierce. It's a vampire romance, but considerably less trashy and problematic than Twilight.

Edited at 2015-02-03 11:24 am (UTC)
Cymru Llewes
cymrullewes at 2015-02-03 12:53 (UTC) (Link)
Dianne Wynne Jones is always a good choice. Howl's Moving Castle is a trilogy and different from the movie (better, IMO)

Seconds for Diane Duane's Young Wizards and Madeleine L'Engle's Wrinkle In Time.

If she's up for SF, then Anne McCaffrey's Brain/Brawn series is good.
If she likes horror then there's Charles Stross's Laundry Files.

I've heard good things about China Mieville, but haven't read any, nor have my teenagers (currently 19, 14, and 12).

Melissa Marr has a good dark fantasy trilogy.

_The Wing and the Wall_ was a good book. I think there was a sequel but I can't remember. It might have been the second book.

We avoid Artemis Fowl (Eion Colfer).

Garth Nix is EXCELLENT. Troubletwisters and the Keys to the Kingdom.

Rick Riordan redoes mythology. Thus far Greek, Roman, and Egyptian.
misquoted at 2015-02-03 17:30 (UTC) (Link)
Stones of Abraxas by K. Sullivan.
Raised by Wolves
sinnamongirl at 2015-02-03 18:53 (UTC) (Link)
If I had that situation, I'd give her a pile of books to choose from - almost anything by Diana Wynne Jones (lots of cats!), The Sharing Knife series by Lois McMaster Bujold, Anne McCaffrey (I'd start someone off with the Harper Hall trilogy, as it may be very easy for her to identify with the main character, an ignored but special teenage girl), The Ropemaker by Peter Dickinson (though I haven't read the second book in that series). I'd also go with The Halfblood Chronicles by Andre Norton, and most anything by Robin McKinley.

Those are all, as far as I know, girl-centric in one way or another (either by author or by subject), but I'd also give a 12-year-old Ender's Game, books by Douglas Adams... I'm very much *not* familiar with new YA books, is the thing here.

Oh, you might want to try the Hyperbole and A Half book. A friend of mine has recommended Orleans to me, which I haven't read, and also The Fifth Wave which I have read and is pretty good.
VR Trakowski
vr_trakowski at 2015-02-04 01:29 (UTC) (Link)
Mary Norton's Are All the Giants Dead? (Probably billed as kidlit but the illustrations are amazing)

Annette Curtis Klause's The Silver Kiss and Blood and Chocolate--don't be fooled by the movie, the book is EXCELLENT

Changeover and The Catalog of the Universe by Margaret Mahy

Almost anything by HM Hoover. The Rains of Eridan, The Lost Star, and The Delikon are three of my favorites

Diana Wynne Jones' Dogsbody

Any of the Borderlands series

Carol Kendall's The Gammage Cup

Pamela Dean's The Secret Country, The Hidden Land, and The Whim of the Dragon (trilogy, second one ends on a cliffhanger so be sure to have the third on hand)

T. Kingfisher's Nine Goblins

Eleanor Cameron's Julia and the Hand of God (not F-SF, but close--and gorgeous)

Susan Cooper's Seaward

Ann Downer's The Spellkey, The Glass Salamander, and The Books of the Keepers

Victoria Walker's The Winter of Enchantment (but don't bother with the sequel, it isn't)
blythe23 at 2015-02-04 08:40 (UTC) (Link)
Anything by Cassandra Clare. The Immortal devices series and clockwork series are phenomenal. I read them with my sister when she was about that age. They recently made the first book in the immortal devices series into a movie(city of bone), but the book is a million times better.
obleighvious at 2015-02-06 23:29 (UTC) (Link)
My niece (15) and I have been enjoying The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer (start with Cinder), which are a retelling of fairy tales in a sci-fi way with a very subtle romance.
shizuku_san at 2015-02-09 05:44 (UTC) (Link)
Song of the Lioness quartet by Tamora Pierce
Dealing With Dragons (and its sequels) by Patricia C. Wrede
The Xanth books and Apprentice Adept series by Piers Anthony
anything by Dianna Wynne Jones
Stardust by Neil Gaiman
(the above are all great YA fantasy)

Weetzie Bat by Francesca Lia Block (this is pretty gritty)
The Fault in Our Stars by John Greene (romance, but it will break your heart. I literally cried for an hour while reading it.)
The Beekeeper's Apprentice by Laurie R. King (Sherlock Holmes fanfic, it's really good)
Eva by Peter Dickinson

I would also recommend the Hunger Games books.

DON'T get her Twilight whatever you do!!

Edited at 2015-02-09 05:46 am (UTC)
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