Reading Suggestions

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Page to Screen: Teen Books at the Movies

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Jane Austen. Emma. (adapted as Emma, Clueless)

Emma, a self-assured young lady in Regency England, is determined to arrange her life and the lives of those around her into a pattern dictated by her romantic fancy.

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Harper Lee. To Kill a Mockingbird.

“Shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can hit ’em, but remember it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.”  A lawyer’s advice to his children as he defends the real mockingbird of Harper Lee’s classic novel–a black man charged with the rape of a white girl. Through the young eyes of Scout and Jem Finch, Harper Lee explores with rich humor and unswerving honesty the irrationality of adult attitudes toward race and class in the Deep South of the 1930s. The conscience of a town steeped in prejudice, violence, and hypocrisy is pricked by the stamina and quiet heroism of one man’s struggle for justice–but the weight of history will only tolerate so much.

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Laurie Halse Anderson.  Speak.

A traumatic event near the end of the summer has a devastating effect on Melinda’s freshman year in high school.

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Ann Brashares. Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.

During summer break, longtime friends Lena, Tibby, Carmen, and Bridget each embark on adventures that they share with each other through a pair of jeans that they have decided will be worn by all and so will absorb all of their stories.

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Meg Cabot. The Princess Diaries.

Fourteen-year-old Mia, who is trying to lead a normal life as a teenage girl in New York City, is shocked to learn that her father is the Prince of Genovia, a small European principality, and that she is a princess and the heir to the throne.

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Suzanne Collins. Hunger Games.

In a future North America, where the rulers of Panem maintain control through an annual televised survival competition pitting young people from each of the twelve districts against one another, sixteen-year-old Katniss’s skills are put to the test when she voluntarily takes her younger sister’s place.

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Shauna Cross. Derby Girl. (adapated as Whip It)

When sixteen-year-old rebel Bliss Cavendar, who is miserable living in a small Texas town with her beauty pageant-obsessed mother, secretly joins a roller derby team under the name “Babe Ruthless,” her life gets better, although infinitely more confusing.

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Chris Crutcher. Athletic Shorts.  (adapted as Angus)

These six powerful short stories chronicle bits of the lives of characters, major and minor, who have walked the rugged terrain of Chris Crutcher’s earlier works. They also introduce some new and unforgettable personalities who may well be heard from again in future books. As with all Crutcher’s work, these are stories about athletes, and yet they are not sport stories. They are tales of love and death, bigotry and heroism, of real people doing their best even when that best isn’t very good. Crutcher’s straightforward style and total honesty have earned him an admiring audience and made readers of many nonreaders.

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Sarah Dessen. Someone Like You & That Summer (adapted as How to Deal)

Someone Like You: Halley’s junior year of high school includes the death of her best friend Scarlett’s boyfriend, the discovery that Scarlett is pregnant, and Halley’s own first serious relationship.

That Summer: During the summer of her divorced father’s remarriage and her sister’s wedding, fifteen-year-old Haven comes into her own by letting go of the myths of the past.

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Lois Duncan. I Know What You Did Last Summer.

Four teenagers try to conceal their responsibility for a hit-and-run accident while being pursued by a mystery figure seeking revenge.

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Jeanne DuPrau. City of Ember.

In the year 241, twelve-year-old Lina trades jobs on Assignment Day to be a Messenger to run to new places in her decaying but beloved city, perhaps even to glimpse Unknown Regions.

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Neil Gaiman. Coraline.

Looking for excitement, Coraline ventures through a mysterious door into a world that is similar, yet disturbingly different from her own, where she must challenge a gruesome entity in order to save herself, her parents, and the souls of three others.

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S.E. Hinton. The Outsiders.

Three brothers struggle to stay together after their parents’ death, as they search for an identity among the conflicting values of their adolescent society in which they find themselves “outsiders.”

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Dianna Wynne Jones. Howl’s Moving Castle.

Eldest of three sisters in a land where it is considered to be a misfortune, Sophie is resigned to her fate as a hat shop apprentice until a witch turns her into an old woman and she finds herself in the castle of the greatly feared wizard Howl.

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Annette Curtis Klause. Blood and Chocolate.

Having fallen for a human boy, a beautiful teenage werewolf must battle both her packmates and the fear of the townspeople to decide where she belongs and with whom.

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Pittacus Lore. I Am Number Four.

In rural Ohio, friendships and a beautiful girl prove distracting to a fifteen-year-old who has hidden on Earth for ten years waiting to develop the Legacies, or powers, he will need to rejoin the other six surviving Garde members and fight the Mogadorians who destroyed their planet, Lorien.

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Stephenie Meyer. Twilight.

When seventeen-year-old Bella leaves Phoenix to live with her father in Forks, Washington, she meets an exquisitely handsome boy at school for whom she feels an overwhelming attraction and who she comes to realize is not wholly human.

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Christopher Paolini. Eragon.

In Aagaesia, a fifteen-year-old boy of unknown lineage called Eragon finds a mysterious stone that weaves his life into an intricate tapestry of destiny, magic, and power, peopled with dragons, elves, and monsters.

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Frank Peretti. Hangman’s Curse.

When several students at Baker High School are stricken by an alleged curse of the school’s ghost, Elijah and Elisha Springfield and their parents, undercover investigators, are sent to uncover the truth behind the events.

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Philip Pullman. The Golden Compass.

Accompanied by her daemon, Lyra Belacqua sets out to prevent her best friend and other kidnapped children from becoming the subject of gruesome experiments in the Far North.

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J.K. Rowling. Harry Potter series.

Rescued from the outrageous neglect of his aunt and uncle, a young boy with a great destiny proves his worth while attending Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry.

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Wendelin Van Draanen. Flipped.

In alternating chapters, two teenagers describe how their feelings about themselves, each other, and their families have changed over the years.

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Ned Vizzini. It’s Kind of a Funny Story.

A humorous account of a New York City teenager’s battle with depression and his time spent in a psychiatric hospital.

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City of Ember. (PG)

Coraline.  (PG)

Emma.  (not rated)

Princess Diaries. (G)

Harry Potter & the Sorcerer’s Stone. (PG)

Hunger Games. (PG-13)

I Am Number Four. (PG-13)

The Outsiders. (PG)

Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. (PG)

To Kill a Mockingbird. (not rated)

Twilight. (PG-13)

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