Getting teens to read isn't always the easiest task these days thank to all their phones and laptops! This collection of modern must haves and classic reads is sure to peak their interest and spark a love of literature.
With all the gizmos and gadgets available these days it can seem like a bit of a battle to even get our teens to open a book, let alone enjoy one.
That was until we discovered the trick was cleverly placing gripping reads around the place for them to pick up. It might not be the easiest task to get them to start but, trust us, once they get into a good book there’ll be no stopping them. In fact, you might even regret buying them a stack of books once you’ve called them for the 100th time for dinner!
We’ve rounded up all the best books for teenagers aged roughly between 12-16, but this obviously depends on how advanced your child is. There are dark tales for the mystery mad and sweet stories for the more sensitive types – so no matter what you’re looking for you’re sure to find it here.
Now, this might not go down well as a suggestion to make in front of friends, but we actually love a little Sunday book session with our teens. There’s no need for anyone else to know you still do story time but reading to each other is such a lovely moment to bond and we guarantee they secretly love it too.
So, have a scroll through our suggestions to get inspiration for what books to buy and have fun picking and choosing your next purchase together with your teen. If you think we’ve left the best teen book ever out of our list, just let us know! Leave us a comment in the box below or post on our Facebook wall and we’ll do our best to add it in. Happy reading!
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The Author: Philip Pullman
What’s it about? The books are set across three worlds and follow two children, Lyra and Will, on a great adventure on which they meet armoured bears, witches and cliff ghasts.
Why will teens love it? This series is definitely designed for older teens as they deal with some quite adult themes, but younger children could read them without understanding everything fully and still really enjoy them.
The Author: Conn Iggulden and Hal Iggulden
What’s it about? This guidebook mixes fun ways of learning history with important life skills for a teenager – including skimming stones, the rules to cricket, coin tricks and juggling.
Why will teens love it? A great book for teens who aren’t a fan of fiction. The Dangerous Book for Boys will have them hooked.
The Author: Anthony Horowitz
What’s it about? Alex is a secret agent working in the Australian outback on a mission that will test all his skills of bravery and cunning to the max.
Why will teens love it? A great thriller novel and one that will keep them on their toes throughout.
The Author: Sue Townsend
What’s it about? Adrian Mole is 13 3/4 and documents every thought that goes through his teenage brain in his diary.
Why will teens love it? This is a really funny book which teenagers will be able to really relate to.
The Author: Kevin Brooks
What’s it about? Martyn Pig lives with his unreliable alcoholic father, until one day an argument goes too far and Martyn does something he doesn’t mean.
Why will teens love it? A good read with a twist at the end that will keep them turning the pages.
The Author: J. K. Rowling
What’s it about? Harry is an orphan who one day is sent a letter inviting him to wizard school. J. K. Rowling’s captivating stories follow him throughout all his boarding school years.
Why will teens love it? Harry Potter is a modern day classic and perfect for kids who love the films. The last couple of books in the series are much darker and should soon get them gripped, but it does help to start with the first book to fully understand the wizarding world (if they haven’t already seen all the films!).
The Author: Judy Blume
What’s it about? Margaret has lots of things she wants to talk about which are far too embarrassing to ask her parents… so instead she asks God.
Why will teens love it? They’ll relate to Margaret and it’s a nice way of giving teen girls especially an insight into how someone else their age might be feeling to make them feel more secure.
The Author: Nick Hornby
What’s it about? Sam is 16 and has little to think about in life (apart from skateboarding) until he meets Alicia and is suddenly facing fatherhood.
Why will teens love it? This book’s definitely one to put them off teenage sex but is perhaps not suitable for younger teens!
The Author: J. R. R. Tolkien
What’s it about? A true classic about the adventures of a Hobbit Bilbo Baggins in his magical world of elves, dwarves and wizards.
Why will teens love it? It’s quite a lengthy book, so one for keen readers, but if they’re a fan of Lord of the Rings, they’ll love this.
The Author: Robert Muchamore
What’s it about? An airline explodes over the ocean in a suspected terrorist attack. Who will solve the case but the specially trained child spies of CHERUB?
Why will teens love it? Teens are the true heroes of this book so kids seem to love it.
The Author: Cecily von Ziegesar
What’s it about? Life for the rich teens in the Upper East Side of New York is never dull. If your kids love the television show, get them to give the books a try.
Why will teens love it? One for older teens and a must-read for any fashion lovers.
The Author: Louis Sachar
What’s it about? Wrongly accused of a crime, Stanley is sent to Camp Green Lake and is made to dig holes in the sand every day – but has his master got another motive for all the digging?
Why will teens love it? The secret will have the reader asking questions and they won’t want to put it down.
The Author: Mervyn Peake
What’s it about? The stories follow Titus, heir to the 77th Earl of Groan, and his adventures in the old and eerie castle of Gormenghast.
Why will teens love it? Another trilogy of books which are perfect for teens with a large imagination.
The Author: Christopher Paolini
What’s it about? With the discovery of a special stone in the woods, Eragon thinks his luck is in – little does he know the stone will bring a dragon hatchling who will take him on adventures and dangerous journeys across the land.
Why will teens love it? If your child is into fantasy novels like Harry Potter and Lord Of The Rings then they’ll love the magic that’s written in the pages of this book – complete with all sorts of creatures.
The Author: Stephenie Meyer
What’s it about? Timid Bella becomes fascinated by her classmate Edward Cullen, only to find out he’s a vampire and she soon gets caught up in his family’s dark world.
Why will teens love it? If they’ve seen the films they’ll love the books – they give more in-depth detail on the dark side of vampires and the struggle for Bella’s affections between Edward and Jacob.
The Author: John Green
What’s it about? 16-year-old Hazel is suffering from terminal cancer and despises her parents for sending her to a support group… that is until Augustus Waters turns up.
Why will teens love it? It’s gripping with emotions but with a sweet love story.
The Author: Joss Stirling
What’s it about? After moving to an American high school, Sky Bright catches a glimpse of bad boy Zed and can’t seem to get him off her brain, but is he controlling her thoughts?
Why will teens love it? They’ll be able to relate to Sky’s inner thoughts being such a believable and likeable main character.
The Author: Louise Rennison
What’s it about? Boys, gossiping and lots of drama courtesy of Tallulah at Dother Hall, the performing arts college which isn’t quite the A-List place she hoped for.
Why will teens love it? Definitely one for girly girls.
The Author: Frances Hodgson Burnett
What’s it about? When Mary’s parents died she is sent to Misselthwaite Manor, where she discovers the secret garden.
Why will teens love it? A timeless classic that boys and girls will both love. Mary’s friendships grow in a lovely way throughout the chapters.
The Author: Louisa May Alcott
What’s it about? The story follows the lives and loves of four sisters which ultimately has a tragic end.
Why will teens love it? Again, it’s a classic and a must-have for any book shelf.
The Author: Harper Lee
What’s it about? To Kill A Mockingbird is a classic tale of three children growing up in America’s deep south at a time when racism and prejudice was widespread.
Why will teens love it? Suitable for slightly older teens, this deals with a lot of tough issues and will really make them think about their own moral compasses.
The Author: Malorie Blackman
What’s it about? A Romeo and Juliet-type story about two children from different backgrounds who try to fight society’s segregation to be together.
Why will teens love it? It’s romance told in a modern and non-sickening way – a perfect balance for teens.
The Author: Sophie McKenzie
What’s it about? Lauren knows she’s adopted but the discovery that she may have been snatched from her biological family as a baby leaves her not knowing what to do.
Why will teens love it? Lovers of thrillers will be hooked on this from the first page and teens won’t want to put this down until they work out if her adoptive parents kidnapped her.
The Author: Paul Zindel
What’s it about? The story is told by two teenagers, John and Lorraine, about what happened when they befriended an old man named Mr Pignati.
Why will teens love it? This is best for slightly older children, and is actually often taught in school. Dealing with mature themes, it can be a good way to discuss potentially tricky subjects with your teens.