books i’ve rec’ed to real live teens lately

On today’s episode of Occasional Librarian-Related Posts, I present to you a list of some books that I’ve talked about with my teens lately. Reader’s advisory is probably my favorite thing about my job, since it’s basically just recommending books to teens based on their interests, etc. Wanting to talk to teens about books and throwing books at them (not literally) is pretty much why I became a librarian, and I’ve gotten to do it a lot lately, so I’ve been very happy at work as of late. Here are some of the books I’ve gotten teens to leave with recently:

One girl I haven’t seen before came in and asked for mystery series. I could not think of a ton of mysteries that were also series, but one that immediately came to mind was Brittany Cavallaro’s Sherlock Holmes retelling, A STUDY IN CHARLOTTE. I also recommended TRULY, DEVIOUS, which I also haven’t read, but have been really interested in reading for a while because BOARDING SCHOOL. I also recommended WE WERE LIARS even though I hated it because I thought it might be appealing to a teen, as well as SADIE, which I’ve heard is really good, and she seemed to think the podcast aspect was cool.


The same girl also asked me where A SERIES OF UNFORTUNATE EVENTS WAS, and, when I told her it was downstairs in the children’s section, asked if there were any books similar to it in the teen section. I can understand that some teens wouldn’t want to go to children’s to get a book, but it does interest me that the location of a book can matter in whether a kid will go get it in the library. I recommended MISS PEREGRINE, which she’d already read, because it had that same kind of creepy vibe. I honestly couldn’t think of anything similar to it in YA, so I went out on a bit of a limb and strayed into paranormal territory to recommend THE NAME OF THE STAR, since that’s also dark and eerie, and she ended up checking it out.


One of my boys who loves to read really loved CINDER by Marissa Meyer, and picked up ARCHENEMIES recently. I told him it was part of a series, which he was super psyched by, so I gave him RENEGADES and he was halfway through it within a couple of days. His sister picked up FOUR DEAD QUEENS when I told her it was a fantasy because she loves paranormal and fantasy novels (please, YA writers, give this girl more vampires!!) and she’s already returned it completed within a week.


You may also like


  1. Ooh I like this idea, and agree with all of the books I’ve read, especially truly devious which I loved! We were liars was one of those books I felt I would’ve liked much more as a teen

    1. yeah, there are definitely some YA books I read now as an adult that I think that about, or that I think I don’t like but I know teens would, so I feel that.

      1. Often it’s just bad writing, but in some cases I have just read similar books that might have been better. It’s a thing to keep in mind when reviewing books that are aimed at like younger teens especially

  2. I love this post! I always say there is such a disconnect between YA for teens and YA for adults. So posts like this (and actually talking to teens) makes people realize that YA IS for teens first and foremost. Thanks for sharing!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *