Monday, September 12, 2011

Top Ten YA Books of 2011

I was on Goodreads today, looking at my "Read" list.  So far this year, I've read 124 books (which leaves 76 in the next three months to meet my goal of 200).  As I was scrolling down the list, I couldn't help but notice that I really enjoyed most of what I've read this year; that got me thinking I should list my favorites for those of you looking for something to read, but are overwhelmed by the choices.  To narrow the pool down (how does one possibly pick a "top ten" out of 124 mostly great books?), I chose from only the 52 books I've read this year that were published in 2011.  Here they are....

Shine1.  Shine by Lauren Myracle~ If you read only one 2011 YA release, read this book!  It was horrible and beautiful and raw.  It will touch your very soul.  This book will stay with me forever and I think everyone should read it.  Read my review HERE.

Beauty Queens2.  Beauty Queens by Libba Bray~ I think this is the funniest book I've ever read.  So full of social commentary, but in the snarkiest way imaginable.  I've said this before, and I won't ever stop saying it; if the writing thing doesn't work out for Libba, she could make millions as a comedian. Read my review HERE.

Hourglass3.  Hourglass by Myra McEntire~ Daringly original, and intensely romantic.  I could not put this down and enjoyed every moment I spent reading it.  I can't express the must-read-ness of this book.  Read my review HERE.

Wither (The Chemical Garden Trilogy)4.  Wither by Lauren DeStefano~ Another Fabulously original story.  I love dystopias, but I was getting sick of every new release trying to be The Hunger Games.  It was so refreshing to read a new dystopia that had a totally original idea.  Beautifully written and immediately engaging.  Read my review HERE.

The Dark and Hollow Places (Forest of Hands and Teeth, Book 3)5.  The Dark and Hollow Places by Carrie Ryan~ It doesn't even seem like this is a 2011 release.  I was so anxiously awaiting this for most of 2010 and read it right away.  I loved them all, but this was the best of the three books in the trilogy, which is one of my favorite series of all time.  Read my review HERE.

Wolfsbane (Nightshade, Book 2)6.  Wolfsbane by Andrea Cremer~ I just got around to reading Nightshade this year,and kicked myself for not reading it sooner.  I didn't make the same mistake with this book,and I liked it even better.  Read my review HERE.  Loved it! (I did like the original cover better.)

Where She Went7.  Where She Went by Gayle Forman~ It could be sentimentality, having loved If I Stay so much, but this book made me so very happy.  It was just the closure I needed, and with so much emotion, good and bad.  This pair of books will be with me for life.  Read my review HERE.

Across the Universe8.  Across the Universe by Beth Revis~ I'm honestly not that huge on mushy-gushy romance.  I'm 35, so I'm pretty jaded at this point.  The fact that Beth Revis managed to write a wholly engaging YA Sci-fi novel that wasn't BASED on romance made me happy.  I am currently hosting a giveaway of a signed copy of this book along with my review.  Check both out HERE.

Sweetly9.  Sweetly by Jackson Pearce~ I liked Sisters Red, I loved Sweetly. I hold a grudge against Disney for their rape of the original fairy tales, and it makes me happy to read a re-telling that captures what they were originally about (gore and fear)!  Read my review HERE.

Divergent10.  Divergent by Veronica Roth~ Fast paced and action packed.  Gritty and unputdownable.  Extremely original.  Liked the idea behind it, loved the characters.  Cannot wait for Insurgent to come out.  If you like a good dystopia,you MUST read this book.  Read my review HERE.

So, there you have my top ten 2011 releases.  It was not easy to choose...  In fact, below are a few runners-up, because it really was VERY close. In no particular order...

Awaken by KatieKacvinsky

City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare

Red Glove by Holly Black

Epic Fail by Claire LaZebnik

Starcrossed by Josephine Angelini

Uncommon Criminals by Ally Carter

Everfound by Neal Shusterman

Hereafter by Tara Hudson

Bumped by Megan McCafferty


  1. I am totally embarrassed that I haven't gotten to any of these yet! Seemed like there was a ton of hype for Across the Universe, I'll probably read it just out of curiosity. I've heard nothing but raves for Divergent, so that one's nearing the top of my TBR list!

    Happy BBAW! :)
    K.C. Neal
    Author of Pyxis
    Book bloggers, reserve an ARC at my blog! :)

  2. Amazing top ten! I didnt know Shine was THAT good! holy cow! I have seen it so many times at the bookstore but never picked it up! Im such a sinner! Im gonna put it in my to read list right now!!

    thanks for sharing =)

  3. Amazing list! I love so many these so now I have no choice but to check out the others.

    Thanks so much for stopping by during IMM! :)

  4. I haven't read any of these yet, though a couple are on my TBR. I'm going to refer back to this page when my pile shrinks a bit, because some of these look really good.

  5. Glad to see Carrie Ryan on your list. I really enjoyed that trilogy. I still have to read Across the Universe. Heard alot of good things about that one.

  6. A wonderful list! I have read half of them and completely agree that they should be in the top 10, I'm off to check out the other half now :)

  7. I loved, loved, loved If I Stay by Gayle Forman. It's just a fun, beautiful, heartbreaking story. I'm going emotional just looking back to the story. And I should really read Where She Went before the film comes out, which I have no idea when. Do you know? Okay. Better get back to reading. Awesome Top Ten YA Books of 2011, by the way. I'm looking forward to reading all of them, especially Divergent.

  8. Interesting. Had never heard of Lauren Myracle or Myra McEntire. But totally agree with the rest of the picks! You just about encapsulated my 2011 YA read list. Way to go!!


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