Fantastic Fiction Fast-Finder For Teens

If there’s any Christmas gift for teenagers that makes the giver feel wholesome, it’s a book! But what do teens really want to read? Here’s our rapid-fire checklist based on interests, including new titles and older ones you may have missed.


For teens who love The Hunger Games:

Unwind by Neal Shusterman

Three runaways have to survive in a world where unwanted kids are ‘unwound’ for their body parts. The sequel is Unwholly. Don’t let the body parts put you off - it’s a thought-provoking read.

For teens who love video games:

ZOM-B by Darren Shan

B’s father is a bully and a racist, but when zombies attack he has no choice but to stick by his side. Highly praised throughout the industry for mixing the horror element with raw observations about human beings.

For teens who love Sci Fi:

A Confusion of Princes by Garth Nix

Kheuri is one of millions of princes, all competing to rule the galaxy, no matter the cost. Sci Fi at its best!

For teens who love creepy stuff:

The Power of Five series by Anthony Horowitz

When Matt moves to a strange new village he suspects a supernatural plot is afoot. Genuinely creepy horror by the author of Alex Rider.

Book 1 is Raven’s Gate.

Book 5, Oblivion, has just been released.

For teens who love real characters:


Everybody Sees the Ants by A S King

A really accessible, moving book about a boy being bullied at high school. His funny, dry voice balances the pain he’s suffering. Realistic but not depressing.

Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley, Six Impossible Things by Fiona Wood, Everything Beautiful by Simmone Howell, and All I Ever Wanted by Vikki Wakefield

These are my favourite contemporary teen reads (all Australian) of the last few years. Real characters, romance, self-discovery, great stories.

Or for real characters in a very unreal situation, try Every Day by David Levithan. What a concept, what a page-turner.

For teens who want something light and funny:

S.C.U.M. by Danny Katz

Fast-paced diary-style account of school, full of slang and humour; aimed at 14+ boys but girls would also enjoy.

I Made Lattes For A Love God by Wendy Harmer

Fun, young YA fiction. Our 14 year old reviewer, Liv, really enjoyed it. You can read her review here.

For teens who love Australian classics:


Picnic at Hanging Rock by Joan Lindsey

This 1967 novel made it into the First Tuesday Bookclub’s Top 10 Australian Books To Read Before You Die List. We have a beautiful clothbound edition this year.

For more personal recommendations, pop into a Readings store and ask to speak to a children’s and YA specialist.