With the Hunger Games movie on the cusp of release and every child between here and timbuktu with their nose in the books, the question I’m sure you’re all pulling your hair out over is: what next?
- Uglies Series by Scott Westerfeld
A futuristic scifi that has romance, action, adventure and intrigue! Like Hunger Games, it has something to say about the popular culture. Westerfeld, however, turns his writing eye on society’s preoccupation with physical perfection.
Tally can’t wait to turn sixteen and become Pretty. Sixteen is the magic number that brings a transformation from a repellent Ugly into a stunningly attractive Pretty, and catapults you into a high-tech paradise where your only job is to have a really great time. In just a few weeks, Tally will be there.
But Tally’s new friend, Shay, isn’t sure she wants to be Pretty. She’d rather risk life on the outside. When Shay runs away, Tally learns about a whole new side of the Pretty world – and it isn’t very pretty. The authorities offer Tally the worse choice she can imagine: find her friend and turn her in, or never turn Pretty at all. The choice Tally makes changes her world forever.
There are rumours of a movie.
- Chaos Walking Trilogy by Patrick Ness.
I admit to some bias towards this trilogy, as it would have to be my favourite YA series ever. I don’t make this claim lightly. The plot is relentless. It will have your kids stumbling in to class, bleary eyed, having read well into the night.
Todd Hewitt is the last boy in Prentisstown. But Prentisstown isn’t like other towns. Everyone can hear everyone else’s thoughts in a constant, overwhelming, never-ending Noise. There is no privacy. There are no secrets. Or are there?
Just one month away from the birthday that will make him a man, Todd unexpectedly stumbles upon a spot of complete silence. Which is impossible. Prentisstown has been lying to him. And now he’s going to have to run…
- Gone Series by Michael Grant.
This is a great series to engage the male readership in. Male protagonist. Check. Death. Check. Action and Adventure. Check. and check.
Also, who doesn’t love a series where the parents are conveniently all killed off?
In the blink of an eye, everyone disappears. GONE. Except for the young. Teens. Tweens. Toddlers. But not one single adult. No teachers, no police, no doctors, no parents. Just as suddenly, no phones, no internet, no TV. No way to get help. And no way to figure out what’s happened. Hunger threatens. Bullies rule. A sinister creature lurks. Animals are mutating. And the teens themselves are changing,developing new talents-unimaginable, dangerous, deadly powers-that grow stronger by the day. It’s a terrifying new world. Sides are being chosen, a fight is brewing. Townies against rich kids. Bullies against the weak. Powerful against powerless. And time is running out: on your fifteenth birthday, you disappear just like everyone else…
The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E Pearson.
Another personal favourite (in fact, my favourite book of 2009). The Adoration of Jenna Fox is slightly left field compared to the rest in this list. Whilst it is a science fiction tale, it’s more about Jenna’s fit into the world she lives in. She wakes up one morning, without any idea of who she is or who she can trust.
There are some really great questions about what it is that makes us human. Is a machine just a machine? At what point do you stop being human and become other?
Jenna is one of my favourite characters: she’s bold, sassy and has a reserve of strength that just draws you deep into her story.
I used to be someone. Someone named Jenna Fox.’ Jenna wakes from a coma after a horrific accident to find her life a blank page and her own identity a mystery. Her parents think her recovery is a miracle, but what really happened to Jenna Fox? A gripping thriller set in a future that may be closer than we think.