Who Made NPR’s 100 Best-Ever Teen Novels List?
I’m always a little wary of lists like these. I’m aware that it was compiled through the votes of the public but I’m sure lists like these already exist on Goodreads. The simple fact is that the top 100 are going to be the absolute classics mixed with the latest new releases in 2012. Maybe if NPR had made two lists or reduced the number to top 20 we would have seen voters change their minds and really choose the novels that have affected them the most. Don’t get me wrong though, I think John Green’s books absolutely deserve to be in the top 20. He’s a masterful writer of Young Adult fiction. I don’t mean cut the books that were recently published either, but I think readers get so caught up by the last book they read that they forget the books that helped shape their character.
I did like the way NPR compiled a series into one placement in the list. Can you imagine the top 10? Harry Potter would have dominated the first seven spots! Although I wonder why The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings were able to take 2 separate spots…
Anyway here’s the top 10. Check out the rest of the list over at NPR!
1. The Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling
“The adventures of Harry Potter, the Boy Who Lived, and his wand-wielding friends at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Harry, Ron and Hermione must master their craft and battle the machinations of the evil wizard Voldemort and his Death Eaters.”
2. The Hunger Games Series by Suzanne Collins
“In the ruins of a future North America, a young girl is picked to leave her impoverished district and travel to the decadent Capitol for a battle to the death in the savage Hunger Games. But for Katniss Everdeen, winning the Games only puts her deeper in danger as the strict social order of Panem begins to unravel.”
3. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
“This Pulitzer Prize-winning novel from author Harper Lee explores racial tensions in the fictional “tired old town” of Maycomb, Ala., through the eyes of 6-year-old Scout Finch. As her lawyer father, Atticus, defends a black man accused of rape, Scout and her friends learn about the unjust treatment of African-Americans — and their mysterious neighbor, Boo Radley.”
4. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
“Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few more years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at the Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel’s story is about to be completely rewritten.”
5. The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien
“Bilbo Baggins, a respectable, well-to-do hobbit, lives comfortably in his hobbit hole until the day the wandering wizard Gandalf chooses him to take part in an adventure from which he may never return.”
6. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
“With the author’s death, the classic novel about young Holden Caulfield’s disillusionment with the adult world and its “phoniness” will only rise in popularity — and controversy, since it is a favorite target of censors, who often cite profanity and sexual references in their efforts to ban the book.”
7. The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien
“Tolkien’s seminal three-volume epic chronicles the War of the Ring, in which Frodo the hobbit and his companions set out to destroy the evil Ring of Power and restore peace to Middle-earth. The beloved trilogy still casts a long shadow, having established some of the most familiar and enduring tropes in fantasy literature.Literary Award Winner.”
8. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
“In a far future world, television dominates, and books are outlawed. The totalitarian regime has ordered all books to be burned by “firemen,” whose job is to start the fires rather than stop them. But one fireman begins to see the value of the printed word.”
9. Looking for Alaska by John Green
“Sixteen-year-old Miles’ first year at Culver Creek Preparatory School in Alabama includes good friends and great pranks, but is defined by the search for answers about life and death after a fatal car crash.”
10. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
“Trying to make sense of the horrors of World War II, Death relates the story of Liesel — a young German girl whose book-stealing and storytelling talents help sustain her family and the Jewish man they are hiding, as well as their neighbors.”