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Author Topic: 100 best young adult novels from 1950-2000
BandoCommando
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Ender's Game is (of course) on the list, along with many other good books that I remember reading. Check this list out!

YA 100 Best

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Princess Leah
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That's not a bad list. Not great. I think Young Adult is a weird catagory. Some of the books on there I loved when I was 13 or so, but now (I'm 6 days short of 19) I find them actually painful to read because the writing is so bad. But some (The Giver; The Ear, The Eye, and The Arm; the works of Chris Crutcher; and *duh* Ender's Game) are still among my favorites. And I didn't really get The Joy Luck Club or The Handmaid's Tale when I tried them in middle school, but I love them now.

Whoa thought: wasn't To Kill A Mockingbird written after 1950? And it's not on there unless I missed it. A brave list. [Smile]

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BandoCommando
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Indeed! Surprising that this is left off...

But then, it's probably not considered to be a YA novel, given that the movie (which is what people really remember) centers more on Atticus Finch and the trial then on Scout's perspective.

Then again, Ender's Game was not intended to be a YA novel, either.

I agree with you though, Princess. Some of the books on there have horrendous writing. Nevertheless, perhaps they were chosen for the depth of the story?

By the way, I MUST recommend one book in particular from this list: The Giver, by Lowry, is a short sci-fi tale that most of us could read through in about an hour, but it's quite a good mind puller, if you know what I mean, particularly for young adults.

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Princess Leah
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re: The Giver- see above [Smile]

I dunno. I think that sometimes when authors deliberately write in the YA genre they sort of dumb down thier writing...which I noticed less when I was younger (am I still a Young Adult?). The story can still be great, but IMHO the "100 Best YA Novels" shouldn't *only* seem good to YAs. I mean, there are children's books I still enjoy. You wouldn't call The Witches or Matilda YA novels, would you? I read them when I was about 6 or 7. I still read them all the time and they're still good and they still resonate. That sort of endurance is important. YA novels should be able to last from "Young" to "Adult"; doesn't that seem right? And I haven't read a bunch of stuff on the list, but Dragonsinger, for example- it's okay, not great. Not terribly well written, nothing incredibly new or deep in the story. Off the top of my head I can think of a whoooole lot of YA books that are better.

To Kill A Mockingbird is such a YA novel. And anyone evaluating books based on the movie made from them should be shot! *muttersaboutHarryPotter*

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DavidGill
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TKAM is an adult novel. It is told by an adult narrator who looks back on her childhood and makes meaning of it. That precluded it from being a YA in many voters' minds.

Email Chris crutcher and tell him that he "dumbs down" his novels. Go ahead, I double-dog dare you.

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Princess Leah
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Did I say he did? Where did I say he did?
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Princess Leah
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Also is this

quote:
That precluded it from being a YA in many voters' minds.
your assumption or do you have insider info? Because a lot of YA novels are not about children or young adults. And a lot of them are on that list The Handmaid's Tale, for instance. Have you read it? It's about adult women and it's narrated by an adult (not "Young adult") woman.

[edit for clarity]

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DavidGill
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I've read all of the books, and yep, it's inside information. There are some books on there that are not YA--Hitchhiker's for example--but some librarians bend over backward to exclude TKAM from any YA list. I don't necessarily agree with them.

You didn't say *he* did, just that *some* authors do. I just know Chris, and *he* will respond if you suggest to him that any YA authors dumb their writing down.

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theamazeeaz
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Davidgill, All of 'em wow...

I can say I read 17 of the books.

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Reticulum
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Huh, they didn't have A series of Unforunate events on there. (or at least I didn't see it, I sort od skipped through)
Also, no Eragon. I really don't think it's that great, (still reading) but apperently everyone else does. Not a very good list (IMO). How old is it?

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Reticulum
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I resent that statement...

Go Ender!!! [Hail]

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DavidGill
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I've had longer to read than most of you younger folks.
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CRash
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A few usually overlooked YA books that made the list (and are among my favorites):

Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes
Swallowing Stones
Fallen Angels
Sabriel

I think it's a pretty good list; I saw many books I love on it and new ones I haven't read before. (I'm glad Eragon isn't on there. It hasn't really had an impact. Basic LotR/Dragon story ripoff, the only unique thing being that it was a teen who wrote it.) A newish author who I think could have made the list is Cornelia Funke, with either her book The Thief Lord or Inkspell.

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Reticulum
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You know what I really am Eragon isn't on their list. It steals from everything else. Including Star Wars. I know someone who said Paolini does this in a 'good' way, but I don't see how. It's good, don't get me wrong, but he just doesn't have 'many' of his own ideas. Also, he looks like a wimp, and sounds like a nerd. Good book.

Are Inspell, or Theif Lord any good...!?!?!?!?!?

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Princess Leah
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Yeah, CRash, I thought there were some good YA books on there usually ignored, but some were *okay* YA books that usually don't apear on 'Best' lists, IMHO fof good reason. Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes is one that is often wrongfully ignored and it's one of my favorites.
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jd2cly60
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overall its a decent list but I have a handful of issues

Blue Sword? Geez, Hero and the Crown is infinitely better.

No hatchet
no bridge to terabithia (or great gilly hopkins both great choices, though I'd give Jacob have I loved an edge over Gilly)
No Elizabeth George Speare
No Spinelli
No Gordon Korman (I Want to Go Home!, Son of Interflux, Who is Bugs Potter, a Semester in the Life of a Garbage Bag, Beware the Fish, The War with Mr. Wizzle)
----In fact a list on YA novels without Maniac Magee or Hatchet on it makes me want to dismiss it out of hand (it's actually a pretty good list) and I usually like lists, but those are massive oversights.

and all those goram problem novels, sheesh enough with the depressing the kids already!

Like that they included so much escapist fare that actually tells stories (I always hated getting the ubiquitous problem novel assigned because it was good for us to read about a kid learning to cope (rarely were the acts portrayed it was all boring repetitive coping!) with rape murder death sex etc).

I'm glad Dragonsinger is on there, as I think the Menolly arc is probably the strongest thing McCaffrey's written.

I don't really see To Kill a Mockingbird as a YA novel, anymore than I see a novel like Cement Garden as YA, even though it deals with young adults coping with the 'problem' of parental death. [Wink] [Big Grin]

[ November 09, 2005, 05:35 AM: Message edited by: jd2cly60 ]

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theamazeeaz
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fyi, the list ends at the year 2000
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Sergeant
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I expected that I would have read many of the books because I was reading 150+ books a year while I was in that age group but it seems I must have mostly skipped the YA genre. Of course I have read some, maybe 10. As for Chris Crutcher, I did find his novels to be overly simplistic.

Sergeant

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LadyDove
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I was surprised that Farewell to Manzanar wasn't on the non-fiction list. It was so important during my teen years, that my history teachers used it as part of the required reading.
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solo
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LLoyd Alexander isn't on the list? That is a crime. The Prydain Chronicles should be on there for sure.
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solo
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That list is actually from 1966-2000 so that explains the lack of C.S. Lewis.

Also, most of the Prydain stuff was published earlier than '66 though The High King was definitely after and should be on this list.

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Pelegius
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Okay, solo. This explains a lot. After all, LOTR is, perhaps, the greatest young adult novel ever. The Once and Future King is way up there too.
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Avery Good Schreibner
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Gasp! Weetzie Bat! I have a collection of Weetzie Bat stories, etc, on my shelf and can't bring myself to read any more. Is it mocking or ridiculing or making fun or just gay? I just finished Magic Kingdom For Sale: Sold, and that was one of my inspirations for posting how-can-others-publish-this-stuff-and-I-can't; or, does amateur have another name? The Giver's good. I am surprised to see The Bell Jar and The Chosen on the list. The Crystal Cave is good. At the end of The Joy Luck Club, I went huh, not huh?, but huh. Oriental women's writing seems to have formed its own genre. And, Maya Angelou made the list, not Toni Morrison, but Maya - you go girl. But, no Tolkien? no Lord Of The Flies? no Avi books? And are any of them Caldecott (?) winners?
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LadyDove
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It looks like there aren't very many Caldecott Award winners, but quite a few Newbery Medal Winners referenced.

Caldecott Award Winners

Newbery Medal Winners

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