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Teen Board Question - May 2018, Part 2

Teen Board Monthly Question

Teen Board Question - May 2018, Part 2

Here at Teenreads, we know that our Teen Board members are invaluable to us, as they read across a variety of genres and are able to share their love of reading all different kinds of books with us and our readers. This month, we asked our Teen Board members to tell us about their favorite genres in YA and what makes them so special. To help round out their answers, we also asked them to include a few titles that they feel really exemplify their favorite genres. Read below for the first half of their answers and click here for Part 1.


I think my favorite genre is contemporary, because it is fun to read stories set in the same world I live in. Two of my all tome favorites are HOW TO MAKE A WISH but Ashley Herring Blake and THE SEVEN HUSBANDS OF EVELYN HUGO by Taylor Jenkins Reid. --- Jessi H.

My favorite genre for young adult fiction is definitely fantasy. It always captures these amazing, beautiful and unimaginable worlds and I love losing myself in them when I read. The characters are almost always more vivid and unique, and the plots always are complex and intriguing. Out of the countless amazing series I’ve read from this genre, I would have to recommend the Throne of Glass series. It combines all these aspects I mentioned: a crazy, enthralling plot, beautifully written characters, and a world so interesting I constantly want to know more. Every book reveals more and more to perfectly capture almost every aspect that I love about the fantasy genre. --- Jessica K.

This past year, I’ve gotten really into historical young adult fiction. One of my favorites from this genre is THESE SHALLOW GRAVES by Jennifer Donnelly. I really enjoyed how this book incorporated modern themes into the historical setting, and the characters were all unique and fun! --- Katie T.

There are so many great genres in  young adult fiction such as contemporary romance, historical and realistic  fiction, urban and high fantasy, horror, thrillers, dystopias and countless more but my all time favorite would probably be science fiction. Ever since I can remember as a child, I have been fascinated by the idea of  discovering futuristic and more complexed worlds existing outside of what I have already known  and I really like the feeling of being transported into a unknown place that allows for my mind to explore different realities other than my own. If I could recommend one series to perfectly represent this genre, I would without a doubt pick THE LUNAR CHRONICLES BY MARISSA MEYER for it has such a diverse cast of characters that you can’t help but relate to and fall in love with as well as it does a wonderful job of vividly illustrating a magnificent cutting edge futuristic world full of twists and turns after every page. It is definitely worth the read! --- Laina Q.

My favorite genre of YA fiction is historical fiction; it can involve a great mix of humor and romance and I love learning about history. As I stated previously THE HELP by Kathryn Stockett—with great humor combined with serious reflection of the time period accurate depiction of the historical fiction genre. --- Lauren C.

My favorite genre is definitely contemporary novels, specifically really sad and hard hitting ones. While I know "sad contemporaries" isn't an actual genre, I count them as one. These books usually deal with mental health issues, grief, and other topics that can be hard to read at times. I'm not sure exactly why this is my favorite genre. Maybe it's because I find it interesting to see how people react when in difficult situations. I always find that people react to things differently from me, and I can't help but wonder, why? Some of my favorite books that fall into this category is SPEAK by Laurie Halse Anderson, which is a book about a girl who is learning to speak up for herself after being raped. Another book that I think deals with tough topics really well is LONG WAY DOWN by Jason Reynolds, which broke my heart after reading it. --- Marco M.

I love YA fantasy the most because of the strong female leads that dominate this genre. I love reading from the perspective of badass girls who wield weapons, powers, etc. To put it simply, they are just so cool. I recommend SIX OF CROWS by Leigh Bardugo and CITY OF BONES by Cassandra Clare for your first YA fantasy reads. These YA classics both have the romance, thrill, and adventure only the best of the best YA fantasy books can capture! --- Melat E.
Mikenzie R.

I don't have a favorite genre, but I definitely have one that I read far more of than any others. That genre being contemporaries. I've always loved contemporary books. It's a genre that I can just pick up after a stressful day and read and not have to devote an extreme amount of attention to. I also like it because it makes me realize how big the world is, which is something that is at times easy to forget when you live in a relatively secluded area. The characters in contemporary books are meant to be very real-world, people you pass on the street. They aren't some great chosen one who has to save the world and become a mighty warrior or something ---not that I don't enjoy those books. It's just nice to read 'real' people handling real problems. A book that I think represents this genre well is one that I just read, STAY SWEET by Siobhan Vivian. It's everything that I think a contemporary should be. The characters felt real, and that's not always the case. A lot of books tend to struggle with having teenagers that act like teenagers and not either an eleven-year-old in 2003 or a thirty-year-old who has triple majored in philosophy, psychology, and anthropology. The characters were real, for better or worse. The situations the main character Amelia was in and the way she dealt with them were all very real, and I appreciate that. I want reality in the books I read, contemporaries should be truthful, and this one was. STAY SWEET was also just a really cute and quick read that I got lost in, and that is one of the greatest feelings in the world. --- Olivia W.

This is a little bit of a rebellious answer, but I would say that I don't have a favorite genre of young adult fiction - like comparing apples and oranges, I find genres are simply too different to measure on the same scale. I also find that the genre that I tend to gravitate towards shifts with the seasons - I read more contemporary and fantasy novels in spring and summer, and more historical and science fiction novels in the fall and winter. I appreciate contemporary novels for their levity and direct relation to real world issues; fantasy, for its imaginative writing and world building; science fiction for the exciting futures and ethical dilemmas it often presents; historical fiction for its ability to expand my knowledge of the distinctive attitudes of other eras. With that said, some novels I would recommend include A Taxonomy of Love by Rachael Allen, a lighthearted love story set in the south, The Star Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi for its imaginative storytelling, Lost Stars for Claudia Gray for all the Star Wars fans out there, and Speak Easy, Speak Love by McKelle George for a full dose of the roaring 20's. --- Rachel R.

My favorite genre is actually essays and short stories. They are just so nice, relatable, and a good quick read! A good book that represents this is THE BOOK THAT MADE ME by various authors. --- Rebecca D.

In my opinion, a good ending to a novel is when the characters fully develop and there is a clear story arc. Whether it be in a coming of age story where the teen gleans insight into society, or a fantasy novel where the main character completes their task and grows from their odyssey, these both embody an ideal and fulfilling ending. I would prefer there to be clear growth in the characters, which doesn't mandate that there be a happy ending. As a reader, I like to relate to the characters and be invested in their journey even if it entails that the ending might not be an optimal one. --- Ryan H.

While there are so many genres of young adult fiction that I love, I must say that my heart belongs to fantasy. To me, reading is all about escaping the world around you and immersing yourself in someone else's experience, and fantasy always provides that. With that being said, there are so many books and series from the fantasy genre that I believe represent it so well. One recent book I read that was an exquisitely written and adventurous high-fantasy was CHILDREN OF BLOOD AND BONE  by Tomi Adeyemi. Her writing is so complex and the world she wrote is so vivid and feels real, despite outlandish concepts, which is the sign of a truly amazing fantasy novel. --- Savana W.

My favorite genre in YA lit would have to be anything to do with true crime. I love murder mysteries (sounds very morbid but they are SO INTERESTING) and it’s even better when we get to see some behind-the-scenes of the FBI. My go-to’s include The Natural series by Jennifer Lynn Barnes and TRULY DEVIOUS by Maureen Johnson. Both had me on the edge of my seat from the start literally questioning every character introduced! --- Taylor F.