Many parents have asked me for a list of recommended books for teenagers. They are frustrated because their children flatly refuse to read any books and spend too much time on their smart phones and iPads, viewing YouTube videos and watching films on Netflix.
It is impossible to understate the importance of reading for pleasure. According to UNESCO, the biggest single indicator of whether a child is going to be successful at school and in work is whether or not they read for pleasure.
Reading for pleasure not only improves a student’s writing, vocabulary, text comprehension and grammar, it also helps them develop empathy and gain a better understanding of human nature.
It is not a coincidence that all the students I teach who excel at English are all avid readers. They invariably use sophisticated vocabulary, figurative language and use a wide variety of punctuation.
Here’s my list of 10 recommended books:
- The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
- The Outsiders by SE Hinton
- The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
- The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon
- War Horse by Michael Morpurgo
- The Shining by Stephen King
- To Kill a Mocking Bird by Harper Lee
- Twilight by Stephanie Myer
- Harry Potter series by JK Rowling
10. Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney
The BBC listed the nation’s best-loved 100 novels in 2003: