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Curriculum Materials Center: Useful Booklists

Lesson Plans and Resources for Educators and Students

English 320 - Classic YA Titles

The Outsiders

CUR. PZ7.H5976 OU

The novel tells the story of Ponyboy Curtis and his struggles with right and wrong in a society in which he believes that he is an outsider. According to Ponyboy, there are two kinds of people in the world: greasers and socs. A soc (short for "social") has money, can get away with just about anything, and has an attitude longer than a limousine. A greaser, on the other hand, always lives on the outside and needs to watch his back. Ponyboy is a greaser, and he's always been proud of it, even willing to rumble against a gang of socs for the sake of his fellow greasers--until one terrible night when his friend Johnny kills a soc. The murder gets under Ponyboy's skin, causing his bifurcated world to crumble and teaching him that pain feels the same whether a soc or a greaser.

The Contender

CUR. PZ7.L67 Co 1967

This is a sports fiction novel that tells a story of Alfred Brooks, a seventeen-year-old high school drop-out, living in Harlem, finding his way in the world and in boxing. Alfred learns that getting to the top is not as important as how you get there, and that before you can be a champion, you have to be a contender with the will to get back on your feet after you have been knocked down.

Mr. and Mrs. Bo Jo Jones

CUR. PS3558.E24 M7 1967

Football hero Bo Jo Jones and his girlfriend July are in love. On the night of the prom, they do what so many couples in love do. Soon, July finds out that she is pregnant with Bo Jo's baby and suddenly the life they once knew is over. Now Mr. and Mrs. Bo Jo Jones must come to grips with the very adult decision that they must make. It's a situation that holds more possibilities and challenges than they ever bargained for. It could bring them closer-or drive them apart. And as the baby grows and changes, so will they.

The Pigman

CUR. PZ7.Z647 Pi 1968

When sophomores John and Lorraine played a practical joke a few months ago on a stranger named Angelo Pignati, they had no idea what they were starting. Virtually overnight, almost against their will, the two befriended the lonely old man; it wasn't long before they were more comfortable in his house than their own. But now Mr. Pignati is dead. And for John and Lorraine, the only way to find peace is to write down their friend's story - the story of the Pigman.

My Darling My Hamburger

PS3576.I518 M9

Four friends,
Two couples,
One year that will change their lives.

Liz and Sean, both beautiful and popular, are madly in love and completely misunderstood by their parents. Their best friends, Maggie and Dennis, are shy and awkward, but willing to take the first tentative steps toward a romance of their own. Yet before either couple can enjoy true happiness, life conspires against them, threatening to destroy their friendships completely. 

I’ll Get There: It Better Be Worth the Trip

CUR. PZ7.D7228 Il 2010

When the grandmother who raised him dies, Davy Ross, a lonely thirteen-year-old boy, must move to Manhattan to live with his estranged mother. Between alcohol-infused lectures about her self-sacrifice and awkward visits with his distant father, Davy's only comfort is his beloved dachshund Fred. Things start to look up when he and a boy from school become friends. But when their relationship takes an unexpected turn, Davy struggles to understand what happened and what it might mean.

Bless the Beast and the Children

PS3537.W3743 B42

Enriched with detailed notes and commentary, Glendon Swarthout’s classic tale of adolescent "misfits" at a boy’s camp on a mission to save themselves.
The neglected attendees of the Box Canyon Boys Camp find their lives turned around by Cotton, who, in a hot-wired pickup, challenges them to join efforts to save a herd of buffalo and rediscover themselves in the process.

That Was Then, This Is Now

CUR. PZ7.H5976 Th 1998

Does growing up have to mean growing apart?

Since childhood, Bryon and Mark have been as close as brothers. Now things are changing. Bryon's growing up, spending a lot of time with girls, and thinking seriously about who he wants to be. Mark still just lives for the thrill of the moment. The two are growing apart - until Bryon makes a shocking discovery about Mark. Then Bryon faces a terrible decision - one that will change both of their lives forever. 

Go Ask Alice

CUR. PZ7 .G534 1971

It started when she was served a soft drink laced with LSD in a dangerous party game. Within months, she was hooked, trapped in a downward spiral that took her from her comfortable home and loving family to the mean streets of an unforgiving city. It was a journey that would rob her of her innocence, her youth -- and ultimately her life.

Read her diary.

Enter her world.

You will never forget her.


The Planet of Junior Brown

CUR. PS3558.A444 P53 1971

Junior Brown, an overprotected three-hundred pound musical prodigy who's prone to having fantasies, and Buddy Clark, a loner who lives by his wits because he has no family whatsoever, have been on the hook from their eighth-grade classroom all semester.

Most of the time they have been in the school building -- in a secret cellar room behind a false wall, where Mr. Pool, the janitor, has made a model of the solar system. They have been pressing their luck for months...and then they are caught. As society -- in the form of a zealous assistant principal -- closes in on them, Junior's fantasies become more desperate, and Buddy draws on all his resources to ensure his friend's well-being.

Mom, the Wolfman and Me

CUR. PZ7.K678345 MO

An eleven-year-old girl describes her life and relationship with her mother who has never married.


CUR. PZ7.W5844 De 1973

Madec was not the kind of man Ben would ordinarily have chosen as a companion for a quiet hunting trip. The only time Madec ever laughed was when he told some story about how smart he was. He was a cold man who liked to hurt things, and he was dangerous with a gun. But Ben needed money for another semester at college, and so when Madec offered to hire him as a guide to hunt bighorn sheep in the desert mountains, he agreed. It was a mistake that very nearly cost Ben his life.

Dinky Hocker Shoots Smack!

CUR. PZ7.K46825 DI

It was bad enough that they had to move to Brooklyn.
Brooklyn Heights, as Tucker Woolf's dad instructs him to tell everyone after he loses his job. Now his father has suddenly developed an allergy to Tucker's cat, Nader, a nine-month-old calico Tucker found underneath a Chevrolet. Tucker's beloved pet finds a new home with overweight, outrageous Susan "Dinky" Hocker, the only person to answer Tucker's ad. As Tucker starts paying regular visits to Dinky's house to check up on Nader, his life begins to change. Dinky introduces Tucker to her strange cousin, Natalia Line, a compulsive rhymer whom Tucker finds fascinating. And enter P. John Knight, who's fat like Dinky...and now, like Nader. 

The Man Without a Face

CUR. PZ7.H7083 Man 1972

Fourteen-year-old Charles desperately wants two things: a father and a way out. Little love has come his way until the summer he befriends a mysterious scarred man named Justin McLeod, nicknamed "The Man Without a Face." Charles enlists McLeod's help as tutor for the St. Matthew's school entrance exams, his ticket away from the unpleasant restrictions of his home life. But more important than anything he could get out of a book, that summer Charles learns from McLeod a stirring life lesson about the many faces of love. 

A Hero Ain’t Nothin’ But a Sandwich

CUR. PZ7 .C4412 Her 2003

Benjie can stop using heroin anytime he wants to. He just doesn't want to yet. Why would he want to give up something that makes him feel so good, so relaxed, so tuned-out? As Benjie sees it, there's nothing much to tune in for. School is a waste of time, and home life isn't much better. All Benjie wants is for someone to believe in him, for someone to believe that he's more than a thirteen-year-old junkie. Told from the perspectives of the people in his life-including his mother, stepfather, teachers, drug dealer, and best friend-this powerful story will draw you into Benjie's troubled world and force you to confront the uncertainty of his future.

The Friends

CUR. PS3557.U93 F75 1992

Phyllisia Cathy--She is fourteen. Her problems seem overwhelming: New York, after life on her sunlit West Indies island, is cold, cruel and filthy. She is insulted daily and is beaten up by classmates. What Phyllisia needs, God not being interested, is a friend.

Edith Jackson--She is fifteen. Her clothes are unpressed, her stockings bagging with big holes. Her knowledge of school is zero. She has no parents, she swears and she steals. But she is kind and offers her friendship and protection to Phyllisia. "And so begins the struggle that is the heart of this very important book: the fight to gain perception of one's own real character; the grim struggle for self-knowledge."

I know what you did last summer

CUR. PS3554.U464 I14x 2010

Last summer, four terrified friends made a desperate pact to conceal a shocking secret. But now, someone has learned the truth and is determined to get even.

The horror is starting again. There is an unknown avenger out there who is stalking them in a deadly game. Will he stop at terror-or is he out for revenge?

A Day No Pigs Would Die


A Day No Pigs Would Die is a book about a Shaker boy, Robert Peck, growing up in Vermont in a poor family. He skips school, and while playing hookie, comes upon a neighbor's cow in the woods who is struggling to give birth. Robert helps the calf be born, but also discovers that the cow is struggling to breathe because of something in its throat, which he manages to remove (turns out to be a goiter), saving its life. Out of gratitude, the neighbor gives Robert a baby pig, that Robert comes dearly to love. The book is the tale of a boy, on the verge of becoming a man, and some difficult, painful lessons that he learns. 

The Chocolate War

CUR. PZ7.C81634 Ch 1997

Jerry Renault ponders the question on the poster in his locker: Do I dare disturb the universe? Refusing to sell chocolates in the annual Trinity school fund-raiser may not seem like a radical thing to do. But when Jerry challenges a secret school society called The Vigils, his defiant act turns into an all-out war. Now the only question is: Who will survive?

Slakes Limbo

CUR. PZ7.H7325 Sl 1986

Desperate, driven, harassed to the breaking point, Slake decides to go underground—into the sheltering depths of the New York City Subway where he ends up staying for one hundred and twenty-one days. This is the story about survival, and about a 13-year-old misfit's attempts to find footing in a hostile and threatening world.

Trying Hard to Hear You.

CUR. PZ7.S4136 Tr 1974

A close-knit summer theater group discovers that two of its members are gay. By the end of summer, the narrator writes, "two of us were going to suffer like we never had before."

House of Stairs

CUR. PZ7.S6313 Ho 2004

One by one, five sixteen-year-old orphans are brought to a strange building. It is not a prison, not a hospital; it has no walls, no ceiling, no floor. Nothing but endless flights of stairs leading nowhere, except back to a strange red machine. The five must learn to love the machine and let it rule their lives. But will they let it kill their souls?

The Cat Ate My Gymsuit

CUR. PZ7.D2394 Cat 2004

Marcy Lewis is bored by school, she knows she's never going to be thin, and she is dead sure she'll never have a date. Life at home isn't great either, since her father bosses her and her mother around. Then along comes Ms. Finney, an English teacher who'll try anything in the classroom and actually treats kids like human beings. Now that she's found a teacher who sees Marcy as more than a name on an attendance sheet, Marcy realizes her life could mean something. When Ms. Finney is suspended, Marcy knows she's got to take a stand. But is this new independence worth the price she'll pay at school and at home?

Fast Sam, Cool Clyde, and Stuff

CUR. PZ7.M992 Fas 1988

When Francis (shortly to be known as Stuff) moved to 116th Street, he didn't know anyone, but that didn't last long. Cool Clyde, Fast Sam, Gloria, BB, Angel and Maria, Chalky and Carnation Charley - they grew close that one eventful year, and nothing was ever like it again. That was the year that modern science got them all in jail; the year Stuff fell in love and was unfaithful; the year Cool Clyde and Fast Sam won the dance contest - almost.


CUR. PZ7.Y44 Dr 1975

Moon Shadow was eight when he sailed from China to join his father Windrider in America. Windrider lived in San Francisco's Chinatown and worked in a laundry. Moon Shadow had never seen him.

But he soon loved and respected this father, a man of genius, a man with a fabulous dream. And with Moon Shadow's help, Windrider was willing to endure the mockery of the other Chinese, the poverty, and the longing for his wife and his own country to make his dream come true.

Inspired by the account of a Chinese immigrant who made a flying machine in 1909, Laurence Yep's historical novel beautifully portrays the rich traditions of the Chinese community as it made its way in a hostile new world.


CUR. PZ7.B7615 Ho 1976

Katherine and Michael meet at a New Year's Eve party. They're attracted to each other, they grow to love each other. And once they've decided their love is forever, they make love.

It's the beginning of an intense and exclusive relationship, with a future all planned. Until Katherine's parents insist that she and Michael put their love to the test with a summer apart...

Forever is written for an older age group than Judy Blume's other novels for children. It caused a storm of controversy when it was first published because of its explicit sexual content.

Are You In the House Alone

CUR. PZ7.P338 Ar 1976

Sixteen-year-old Gail is living the upper-class suburban life when she begins receiving terrifying phone calls and notes in her locker. And the calls keep coming. When she's attacked by the town's golden boy everyone refuses to take action against him and his powerful family. A frightening drama that deals with heavy teen issues and the idea of justice (or lack thereof) from bestselling author Richard Peck. 


CUR. PS3557.U93 R82 2005

When Ruby moves from the West Indies to the mean streets of Harlem, she finds a love that leads her through the painful transition from girl to woman.

I am the Cheese

CUR. PZ7.C81634 Iac

Adam Farmer is on a journey - he has to get to Rutterburg with a parcel for his father. But as he travels, he starts to remember the events leading up to this point, memories which are also being prised out in gruelling psychiatric interviews. What is the secret of Adam Farmer? And what will happen when he finds out?


Killing Mr. Griffin

CUR. PZ7.D9117 Ki 2010

Kill their English teacher? Even if Mr. Griffin was the toughest teacher in the school, the one who demanded the most, gave the lowest grades, and refused to turn the classroom into a place where students had 'fun'--- there was no reason to kill him. Or was there?
Well, Mark suggested, perhaps not kill him--- just really frighten him. Kidnap him for a few hours and teach him that students could strike back.


A strange imprisonment...

CUR. PZ8.M1793 Be 1978

Beauty has never liked her nickname. She is thin and awkward; it is her two sisters who are the beautiful ones. But what she lacks in looks, she can perhaps make up for in courage.

When her father comes home with the tale of an enchanted castle in the forest and the terrible promise he had to make to the Beast who lives there, Beauty knows she must go to the castle, a prisoner of her own free will. Her father protests that he will not let her go, but she answers, "Cannot a Beast be tamed?"

The Pistachio Prescription

CUR. PZ7.D2394 Pi 1978

Cassie Stephens is dealing with a lot. She's got asthma. World War III is waged daily in her home, beginning at the breakfast table and ending with slammed doors at night. She's running for freshperson class president. The pressure is mounting, and there's only one thing that can make Cassie feel better. Pistachio nuts. No matter how weird it sounds, those little red nuts are just the prescription for Cassie s troubles. 

Words By Heart

CUR. PZ7.S444 Wo 1997

Lena can recite the Scriptures by heart. Hoping to make her adored Papa proud of her and to make her white classmates notice her "Magic Mind," not her black skin, Lena vows to win the Bible-quoting contest. But winning does not bring Lena what she expected. Instead of honor, violence and death erupt and strike the one she loves most dearly. Lena, who has believed in vengeance, must now learn how to forgive.

After the First Death

CUR. PZ7.C81634 Af 1979

Who will be the next to die?

They've taken the children. And the son of a general. But that isn't enough.

More horrors must come...

Can You Sue Your Parents for Malpractice

CUR. PZ7.D2394 Ca 1979

Lauren Allen's life is the pits. Bobby Taylor's just jilted her. Her ninth-grade teachers are demerit-crazy. And she has to share her bedroom with messy younger sister who wants to be a stand-up comic, while her older sister seems to get everything she wants. Between her parents, her two sisters, and school, Lauren feels she's got no rights at all.

But then Lauren takes a course - "Law for Children and Young People" - and meets Zack, an eighth grader who's "nice and attractive and bright and funny."

Suddenly Lauren realizes that there are solutions to her problems. She can protest unfair policies at school. She can stand up to the kids who call her a cradle robber for going out with Zack. And she can sue her parents for malpractice...can't she?



CUR. PZ7.H5976 Te 1979

Easy going, thoughtless, and direct, Tex at fifteen likes everyone and everything, especially his horse, Negrito, and Johnny Collins's blue-eyed sister, Jamie. He thinks life with his seventeen-year-old brother, Mason, in their ramshackle house would be just about perfect if only Mace would stop complaining about Pop. Pop hasn't been home in five months. Mace wants to get out of Oklahoma. Tex just seems to attract trouble and danger... Suddenly everything's falling apart. Can Tex keep it all together? 


Jacob Have I loved

CUR. PZ7.P273 JAC1980

Esau have I hated . . . Sara Louise Bradshaw is sick and tired of her beautiful twin Caroline. Ever since they were born, Caroline has been the pretty one, the talented one, the better sister. Even now, Caroline seems to take everything: Louise's friends, their parents' love, her dreams for the future.

For once in her life, Louise wants to be the special one. But in order to do that, she must first figure out who she is . . . and find a way to make a place for herself outside her sister's shadow.


The Language of Goldfish

CUR. PZ7.O552 Lan 1990

Carrie Stokes, age 12, is suffering a mental breakdown due to her fear of change. She is growing up without realizing it, or perhaps blatantly ignoring it, until it gets too hard for her to pretend that everything is the same as it was when she was a young girl. Carrie is a skilled artist and takes lessons with the art teacher at her school. Carrie's parents do not show much support for Carrie's passion for art; every time Carrie shows her parents an art piece, they seem unimpressed. Moira, Carrie's older sister, is a constant reminder that she inevitably has to grow up. She has an anxiety disorder because she is worried about the social graces and rites of passage – such as going to school dances – that growing up entails



CUR. PZ7.V874 Ho 2012

It's still true...

That's the first thing James Tillerman says to his sister Dicey every morning. It's still true that their mother has abandoned the four Tillerman children somewhere in the middle of Connecticut. It's still true they have to find their way, somehow, to Great-aunt Cilla's house in Bridgeport, which may be their only hope of staying together as a family.

But when they get to Bridgeport, they learn that Great-aunt Cilla has died, and the home they find with her daughter, Eunice, isn't the permanent haven they've been searching for. So their journey continues to its unexpected conclusion -- and some surprising discoveries about their history, and their future.


Annie On My Mind

CUR. PZ7.G165 An 1982

This groundbreaking book is the story of two teenage girls whose friendship blossoms into love and who, despite pressures from family and school that threaten their relationship, promise to be true to each other and their feelings. The book has been banned from many school libraries and publicly burned in Kansas City.


Sweet Whispers Brother Rush

CUR. PZ7.H1828 Sw 1982

Why had he come to her, with his dark secrets from a long-ago past? What was the purpose of their strange, haunting journeys back into her own childhood? Was it to help Dab, her retarded older brother, wracked with mysterious pain who sometimes took more care and love than Tree had to give? Was it for her mother, Vy, who loved them the best she knew how, but wasn't home enough to ease the terrible longing?

Whatever secrets his whispered message held, Tree knew she must follow. She must follow Brother Rush through the magic mirror, and find out the truth. About all of them.

When We First Met

CUR. PZ7.M47398 Whe 1982

They never should have met--but they did...
When Jenny meets Rob Montana she's happier than she's been in a long time. Theirs is the kind of love she thought existed only in movies. It seems that Jenny and Rob can talk about and share everything--until they discover the horrible truth. Rob's mother is the drunken driver who killed Jenny's sister Gail only two years before.
Jenny wants to continue her relationship with Rob--she can't imagine life without him. But she feels town in many directions once she finds out who he is. She wants to be loyal to her family and to Gail's memory. But now she's in love with Rob--and he's in love with her.


The Bumblebee Flies Away

CUR. PZ7.C81634 Bu 1983

Sixteen-year-old Barney can't remember life before the Complex, an experimental clinic. He knows he's different--he's the control subject. Then he uncovers a terrible secret about himself, a secret that drives him to fulfill his and his fellow subjects' ultimate dream. The Bumblebee must fly!

Running Loose

CUR. PZ7.C89 Ru 1983

Louie Banks has it made.He's got a starting spot on the football team, good friends, and a smart, beautiful girlfriend who loves him as much as he loves her.

Early in the fall, he sees all his ideas of fair play go up in smoke; by spring, what he cares about most has been destroyed. How can Louie keep going when he's lost everything?

Remembering the Good Times

CUR. PZ7.P338 Rd 1985

How well do we know our best friends?

They were the best of friends. Sixteen-year-old Buck Mendenhall first met Kate Lucas the summer before seventh grade. In eighth grade they made friends with the brilliant and wealthy newcomer, Trav Kirby. They didn't seem to need anyone else. Mostly they looked forward to the good times shared at Kate's house. It didn't matter if their classmates wondered about them; no one could unravel their binding ties.

At least that's what they thought. When one of the trio finds the future too great a threat, the other two can only wonder: "How well did we know our best friend?"


The Moves Make the Man

CUR. PZ7.B7913 MO1984

Reverse spin, triple pump, reverse dribble, stutter step with twist to the left, stutter into jumper, blind pass. These are me. The moves make the man. The moves make me.

Jerome foxworthy -- the Jayfox to his friends -- likes to think he can handle anything. He handled growing up without a father. He handled being the first black kid in school. And he sure can handle a basketball.

Then Jerome meets bix Rivers -- mysterious and moody, but a great athlete. So Jerome decides to teach bix his game. He can tell that bix has the talent. All he's got to do is learn the right moves.... 

Night Kites

CUR. PS3561.E77 N54 1987

Erick knows the family code: "Family is first. Toe the line. Fit in." At Seaville High his life is tame, predictable - hanging out with his girlfriend, Dill, and his pal Jack. Then Erick falls in love with Nicki Marr. Nicki's sort of scary. She's 17 going on 25. Every word she says, every move she makes, seems seductive - and aimed right at Erick. But she's Jack's girl... isn't she? Meeting Nicki teaches Erick about not fitting in. Then Erick learns that Pete, his seemingly perfect big brother, doesn't fit in either. Nicki and Pete aren't afraid to be different, aren't afraid to love - but the price they pay is high. Erick longs for that freedom but is caught between his longing and the safe, secure world of his family.



CUR. PZ7.C89 St 2003

Stotan: A cross between a Stoic and a Spartan

It's the last swimming season for Walker, Nortie, Lion, and Jeff, and their coach is building their self-discipline in a grueling four-hour-a-day test of stamina designed to bring them to the outer edge of their capabilities.

As it turns out, Stotan Week is also the week in which secrets are revealed, and the four friends must draw upon their new strengths for an endurance they never knew they'd need.

Princess Ashley

CUR. PZ7.P338 Pr 1987

A newcomer at Crestwood High, Chelsea is perfectly willing to view sophomore year from the sidelines. But she is stunned when out of the blue, beautiful, powerful Ashley Packard handpicks her as a member of the group, a magic circle in a school full of strangers.

Chelsea is charmed and amazed at her sudden insider status, and ignores her mother's warnings about Ashley and the world she rules.

But as senior year draws near, Chelsea becomes disillusioned with her role as follower. Can she stop Ashley's manipulations and avert the tragedy looming ahead?

Permanent Connections

CUR. PZ7.B76195 Pe 1999

Back in New Jersey, Rob moved through high school trying to mask his unhappiness with a haze of drugs and alcohol. Now he's forced to spend a semester helping relatives in rural North Carolina -- and he feels trapped. Even falling in love with well-disciplined Ellery doesn't stop him from going on a final, self-destructive spree. But the crisis makes him realize his actions don't exist in a vacuum -- and that permanent connections can offer comfort even to those who feel utterly adrift.


The Goats

CUR. PZ7.C67342 Go 1987

A boy and a girl are stripped and marooned on a small island for the night. They are the "goats." The kids at camp think it's a great joke, just a harmless old tradition. But the goats don't see it that way. Instead of trying to get back to camp, they decide to call home. But no one can come and get them. So they're on their own, wandering through a small town trying to find clothing, food, and shelter, all while avoiding suspicious adults—especially the police. The boy and the girl find they rather like life on their own. If their parents ever do show up to rescue them, the boy and the girl might be long gone. . . .

The Crazy Horse Electric Game

CUR. PZ7.C89 Cr 2003

Willie Weaver used to be a hero.
Now he's nothing.Willie is a top athlete, the star of the legendary game against Crazy Horse Electric. Then a freak accident robs him of his once-amazing physical talents.

Betrayed by his family, his girlfriend, and his own body, Willie's on the run, penniless and terrified on the streets, where he must fight to rebuild both his body and his life. 


After The Rain

CUR. PZ7.M47398 AF1987

At fifteen, Rachel is a worrier. She worries about whether her family understands her, whether her friends like her, and whether she'll get her first kiss before she turns sixteen. And she worries about whether she can handle having a real boyfriend if he does come along.

But it takes a dying old man -- her grandfather -- who has never been easy for anyone to handle, to show Rachel she has very special abilities. With love and compassion, she reaches the heart of an old tyrant who has always been unreachable. And in so doing, she comes to a better understanding of her family, her friends, and herself.


CUR. PZ7.P28 Ha 1988

Brian is on his way to Canada to visit his estranged father when the pilot of his small prop plane suffers a heart attack. Brian is forced to crash-land the plane in a lake--and finds himself stranded in the remote Canadian wilderness with only his clothing and the hatchet his mother gave him as a present before his departure.

Brian had been distraught over his parents' impending divorce and the secret he carries about his mother, but now he is truly desolate and alone. Exhausted, terrified, and hungry, Brian struggles to find food and make a shelter for himself. He has no special knowledge of the woods, and he must find a new kind of awareness and patience as he meets each day's challenges. Is the water safe to drink? Are the berries he finds poisonous?

Slowly, Brian learns to turn adversity to his advantage--an invading porcupine unexpectedly shows him how to make fire, a devastating tornado shows him how to retrieve supplies from the submerged airplane. Most of all, Brian leaves behind the self-pity he has felt about his predicament as he summons the courage to stay alive.


CUR. PZ7.C81634 Fad 2004

IT IS THE summer of 1938 when young Paul Moreaux discovers he can “fade.” First bewildered, then thrilled with the power of invisibility, Paul experiments. But his “gift” soon shows him shocking secrets and drives him toward a chilling act.


Sex Education

CUR. PZ7.D2923 Se 1988

David and Livvie are working on their term project together for their sex education class. Their project is to care for someone else for the semester. But when they choose a lonely, pregnant neighbor, they find that caring isn't as simple as it sounds. An ALA Best of the Best Books for Young Adults. A School Library Journal Best Book of the Year.

The Arizona Kid

CUR. PZ7.K81825 Ar 2005
I was in the West. The Old West. The Wild West! A whole summer in a new place: a place away from my parents, a place so hot the girls probably wore bikinis to church, a place where I'd take a giant step toward my dream: becoming a vet. A place where — who knows? — anything might happen.

From the moment sixteen-year-old Billy steps off the train in Tucson, he knows this will be a summer unlike any he's seen in small-town Bradleyville, Missouri. For starters, he's staying with his cool gay uncle, who has managed to get him a job at the racetrack caring for horses. Still, Billy doesn't expect the horseracing world to be quite as rough and tumble as this — toiling side by side with a macho survivalist and falling hard for the feisty, romance-shy "exercise girl" Cara Mae. With his trademark fast-paced dialogue filled with wit and compassion, Ron Koertge tells the tale of an insecure teen who discovers that gaining stature involves more than Stetsons and boots — and that lessons on love and manhood come from the places you least expect.

Fallen Angels

CUR. PZ7.M992 Fal 1988

A coming-of-age tale for young adults set in the trenches of the Vietnam War in the late 1960s, this is the story of Perry, a Harlem teenager who volunteers for the service when his dream of attending college falls through. Sent to the front lines, Perry and his platoon come face-to-face with the Vietcong and the real horror of warfare. But violence and death aren't the only hardships. As Perry struggles to find virtue in himself and his comrades, he questions why black troops are given the most dangerous assignments, and why the U.S. is there at all.

Weetzie Bat

CUR. PZ7.B61945 We 1989

This could be a book about cheap cheese and bean burritos, slinkster dogs, lanky lizards and rubber chickens ...Or strawberry sundaes with marshmallow toppings, surfing, stage-diving and sleeping on the beach ...It could even be a book about magic. But what it's definitely about is Weetzie Bat, her best friend Dirk and their search across L.A. for the most dangerous angel of all ...true love.



CUR. PZ7.C67342 Ce 1989

"Show a little maturity," he said, which I've doped out to mean: Pass all your courses, avoid detection in all crimes and misdemeanors, don't get pregnant.

Celine's father has left her with these instructions. She's not too worried about the last two, but she'll fail English unless she rewrites her Catcher in the Rye essay. And she keeps being interrupted, especially by Jake, the neighbor's boy, who's been dumped on her for the weekend.

Chinese Handcuffs

CUR. PZ7.C89 Ch 1989

Dillon is living with the painful memories of his brother's suicide -- and the role he played in it. To keep his mind and body occupied, he trains intensely for the Ironman Triathalon. But outside of practice, his life seems to be falling apart.

Then Dillon finds a confidante in Jennifer, a star high school basketball player who's hiding her own set of destructive secrets. Together they must find the courage to confront their demons -- before its too late.

This ALA Best Book for Young Adults is now available with a stunning new look. Two star athletes find the courage to confront painful memories in this gritty, realistic tale of friendship and healing.

Award Booklist

To see the books in the list, click the name of the list.


Description of awards, with the exception of the Ezra Jack Keats, Rebecca Caudill, and CABA, from the Yankee Book Peddler Children's Book Awards Collection Plan. Description of Ezra Jack Keats Award from Ezra Jack Keats Foundation.  Description of CABA from Africa Access. Description of Rebecca Caudill from Rebecca Caudill Foundation.

Classic YA Titles for ENG 320

Awesome Summer Reads for Middle School Readers

ETE 260 Genre Booklists

Searching for children's and YA books by genre for ETE 260?  Click on the titles of each category below for a starter list of books in each category!

High Interest, Low Reading Level Books

Aesop Prize Award-winners

Looking for an outstanding book based on myth or folklore?  Check into these Aesop Prize-winners.  An award given by the American Folklore Society, the Aesop Prize "recognize[s] exceptional books, for children or young adults, that are based on folklore."

Wordless Picture Books

Wordless picture books are perfect for reluctant readers and anyone who loves a beautiful visual narrative.

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Action Reads: When You Want Story-time Up & Moving

Looking for a list of action reads that will get your little people up and moving?


Looking for a list of action reads that
will get your little people up and moving?