Doing some reading outside of your English class is a great way to improve your writing and vocabulary, to expand your understanding of the world and to relax. If you’re looking for some recommendations, these are some great books to get into reading. These are all books set in other worlds, so if fantasy and sci-fi are your thing, you should definitely be able to find something that interests you in here (if not, check out our other reading recommendations blog!) Some of the themes are a bit more mature, so be warned, this list is more for older teens.
Cinder by Marissa Meyer: Cinder is the first in a series loosely based on Cinderella. If sci-fi is more your speed, then this is an interesting book with cool characters and great world building. Series can often be a great way to get into and stay into reading, so I would highly recommend this one.
The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater: This is another series and is great for fantasy lovers. The world-building is engaging and the characters drive these books well. Unlike a lot of young adult fantasy (looking at you, Twilight), the female characters are fleshed out and have motives other than romance, so this book is really worth a look!
1984 by George Orwell: Orwell is someone who pops up on school syllabuses pretty frequently, but if you can get past that, this is a great book! Orwell writes in very simple English and this book is sure to make you think more deeply about the world. Ever heard of the phrase ‘Big Brother is watching you’? That comes from this book!
Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs: This novel is a pretty creepy (in a great way) and filled with real photos that all add to the mystery. It’s the first in a trilogy and it was made into a movie, though the books are definitely worth a read first.
City of Bones by Cassandra Clare: This is the first book of The Mortal Instruments series, and if you want to dive head first into a complex and fleshed out world, this is a great place to start. Don’t be discouraged by the movie or TV show (*shiver*),these books have a lot to love and are well worth a read.
Any book written by Patrick Ness: Ness is a young adult author who usually has male protagonists and fantasy (or slightly fantasy) worlds. The Knife of Never Letting Go is the first in a series which is very highly rated. The Rest of Us Just Live Here is a stand-alone, which follows an ordinary teenage guy in a world full of gods and heroes and is a wonderful and funny book.
If none of these float your boat, head to the library, a bookshop or a second-hand bookshop. Looking for books is half the fun! And don’t put pressure on yourself to read it in a certain amount of time. Reading is meant to be fun, so take time to really enjoy it!
-By Lydia Fagan