Unfortunately, your access has now expired. But there’s good news—by subscribing today, you will receive 22 issues of Booklist magazine, 4 issues of Book Links, and single-login access to Booklist Online and over 200,000 reviews.
Your access to Booklist Online has expired. If you still subscribe to the print magazine, please proceed to your profile page and check your subscriber number against a current magazine mailing label. (If your print subscription has lapsed, you will need to renew.)
Register or subscribe today
Find more Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers
The Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers list, compiled annually by a committee of the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA), suggests books that teens, ages 12–18, will pick up on their own and read for pleasure; it is geared to the teenager who, for whatever reason, does not like to read. Titles published in late 2008 are noted; all others were published in 2009. The committee’s top 10 choices are identified with a star (*).
America’s Next Top Model:
Fierce Guide to Life; The Ultimate Source of Beauty, Fashion, and Model Behavior. By J. E. Bright. illus. Universe, paper, $24.95 (9780789318596).
Let your inner diva shine.
Are You Afraid Yet? The Science behind Scary Stuff. By Stephen James O’Meara. Illus. by Jeremy Kaposy. Kids Can, $17.95 (9781554532940); paper, $9.95 (9781554532957).
Uncover the scientific truth about the strange and unusual.
Art of the Video Game. By Josh Jenisch. illus. 2008. Quirk, $40 (9781594742774).
The digital artistry of your favorites.
Crap: How to Deal with Annoying Teachers, Bosses, Backstabbers, and Other Stuff That Stinks. By Erin Elisabeth Conley and others. Zest, paper, $8.95 (9780979017353).
Life is crappy, but it doesn’t have to wreck your day.
Deadly Perils and How to Avoid Them. By Tracey Turner. Illus. by Ben Hasler. Walker, paper, $11.99 (9780802787385).
. . . and then you die.
The Dictionary of High School B.S.:
From Acne to Varsity; All the Funny, Lame, and Annoying Aspects of High School Life. By Lois Beckwith. illus. 2008. Zest, paper, $10.95 (9780979017391).
High school—one definition at a time.
The Disposable Skateboard Bible. By Sean Cliver. illus. Gingko, $39.95 (9781584233275).
Ultimate guide to skateboard decks.
Extreme Pumpkins II: Take Back Halloween and Freak Out a Few More Neighbors. By Tom Nardone. illus. 2008. Penguin/HP, paper, $13.95 (9781557885333).
Not your traditional jack-o’-lantern: alien, booger-filled pumpkin and more!
Fuck the World. By Bodhi Oser. illus. Chronicle, paper, $16.95 (9780811866453).
Signs all over the world—with one word added.
Gothic Lolita Punk. By Rico Komanoya. illus. Collins Design, paper, $24.99 (9780061149955).
A showcase of art and artists from Japan.
Hell Bound: New Gothic Art. By Francesca Gavin. illus. 2008. Laurence King, paper, $24.95 (9781856695633).
Art from the dark and disturbed.
* High Voltage Tattoo. By Kat Von D. illus. Collins Design, $29.99 (9780061684388).
Famed L.A. tattoo artist talks ink and rock ’n’ roll.
Celebrity Dogs Bite Back. By Nasim Mawji and others. illus. 2008. DK, paper, $9.95 (9780756636821).
What is Paris Hilton’s dog really thinking?
How to Be a Vampire: A Fangs-On Guide for the Newly Undead. By Amy Gray. Illus. by Scott Erwert. Candlewick, $14.99 (9780763649159).
Thinking outside the coffin.
A Young Model’s Story of Appetite, Ambition, and the Ultimate Embrace of Curves. By Crystal Renn. illus. Simon & Schuster, $25 (9781439101230).
A model’s success doesn’t require starvation.
I Can’t Keep My Own Secrets:Six-Word Memoirs by Teens Famous and Obscure
. By Larry Smith and Rachel Fershleiser. illus. HarperTeen, paper, $8.99 (9780061726842).
Turn the page: teens’ true confessions.
I Love Yous Are for White People. By Lac Su. illus. HarperPerennial, paper, $14 (9780061543661).
Violence at home and on the streets.
42 People, 42 Stories. By Carey Hart and Chris Palmer. Illus. by Bill Thomas. 2008. Workman/Artisan, $35 (9781579653354).
Everyone’s skin has a story.
Clever, Odd, and Outrageous Tattoos. By John Smith. illus. 2008. teNeues, $19.95 (9783832792800).
What were they thinking?
Jonas Brothers Forever:The Unofficial Story of Kevin, Joe, and Nick
. By Susan Janic. illus. ECW, paper, $14.95 (9781550228519).
All you need to know about the bros.
LOL Cat, v.1:
I Can Has Cheezburger? A LOLcat Colleckshun. By Professor Happycat and icanhascheezburger.com. illus. 2008. Gotham, paper, $10 (9781592404094).
Dis buk iz rilly funnee!
LOL Cat, v.2: How to Take over teh Wurld: A LOLcat Guide 2 Winning. By Professor Happycat and icanhascheezburger.com. illus. Gotham, paper, $12 (9781592405169).
LOLcats r bak!
Real Girls and Guys Confess More of Their Most Mortifying Moments! By Seventeen magazine staff. illus. Hearst, paper, $7.95 (9781588167309).
It’s funny because it’s not you.
* The Naked Truth: Young, Beautiful, and (HIV) Positive. By Marvelyn Brown and Courtney E. Martin. 2008. Amistad, paper, $14.95 (9780061562396).
“That boy did her scandalous.” —Ezra, 16
A Revealing Insight into the Obsessed Minds of Men. By Tony Davidson. illus. Virgin, paper, $12.95 (9780753516904).
Boobs, boobs everywhere. Where’s Waldo for teenage boys.
* Paranormal Caught on Film. By Melvyn Willin. 2008. illus. David & Charles, $16.99 (9780715329801).
“I’m going to keep the light on.” —Noel, 13
Passive Aggressive Notes:
Painfully Polite and Hilariously Hostile Writings. By Kerry Miller. illus. 2008. HarperCollins, paper, $13.95 (9780061630590).
Dear Reader, Do you really need an invitation to open this book?
Fated for Fame. By Mel Willams. illus. Simon & Schuster/Simon Pulse, paper, $9.99 (9781416989974).
There’s more to the actor than his trademark hair: short, sweet, full of pics.
The Robert Pattinson Album. By Paul Stenning. illus. Plexus, paper, $16.95 (9780859654388).
The full story.
* Show Me How: 500 Things You Should Know; Instructions for Life from the Everyday to the Exotic. By Derek Fagerstrom and Lauren Smith. 2008. illus. Collins Design, paper, $24.95 (9780061662577).
Fighting a shark, getting out of a car in a miniskirt—it’s all here.
The Skateboarding Field Manual. By Ryan Stutt. illus. Firefly, paper, $19.95 (9781554073627).
Skateboarding 101: evolution, tricks, etiquette, and dealing with the law.
* The Street Art Book:60 Artists in Their Own Words. By Ric Blackshaw and Liz Farrelly. illus. HarperCollins, paper, $29.95 (9780061537325).
Life, art, and inspiration: graffiti artists talk.
Street Art San Francisco:
Mission Muralismo. By Annice Jacoby. illus. Abrams, $35 (9780810996359).
Altered billboards, graffiti, murals—and more.
Stuff on my Mutt. By Mario Garza. illus. Chronicle, paper, $12.95 (9780811868976).
Wigs, Easter eggs, and tiaras . . . oh my!
Twenty-fifth Anniversary Edition. By Martha Cooper and Henry Chalfant. illus. Chronicle, $40 (9780811868877).
It’s big, it’s beautiful, it’s classic NYC.
Tattoo Delirium. By Eva Minguet. illus. Collins Design, paper, $29.99 (9780061740329).
The Travel Book:
A Journey through Every Country in the World. By Lonely Planet Publications staff. illus. 2008. Lonely Planet, $24.99 (9781741040050).
Around the world in 80 seconds.
Twilight Director’s Notebook: The Story of How We Made the Movie. By Catherine Hardwicke. illus. Little, Brown, $17.99 (9780316070522).
Behind the scenes.
Ugly Guide to Being Alive and Staying That Way. By David Horvath and Sun Min-Kim. illus. Random, paper, $5.99 (9780375857027).
Secrets of everyday life in the Ugly world.
* The Vampire Book. By Sally Regan. illus. DK, $19.99 (9780756655518).
All you ever wanted to know in full dead and living color.
Off the Wall; Stories of Sole from Vans Originals. By Doug Palladini. illus. Abrams, $24.95 (9780810983755).
All the art and dirt.
Who Would Buy This? The Archie McPhee Story. By Mark Pahlow. illus. 2008. Accoutrements, $24.95 (9780978664978).
Weird and bizarre in plastic. “The donkey butt cigarette dispenser is gross cool.” —Lenox, 15
The Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook:
Middle School. By David Borgenicht and others. Illus. by Chuck Gonzales. Chronicle, paper, $10.99 (9780811868648).
How to get out alive.
Would You Rather . . . ?
Gross Out! Over 300 Disgusting Dilemmas Plus Extra Pages to Make Up Your Own. By Justin Heimber and David Gomberg. illus. 2008. Seven Footer, paper, $9.95 (9781934734117).
Gargle blue-cheese dressing for mouthwash or wear liver-scented deodorant? You choose.
The Definitive Guide to World Wrestling Entertainment. By Brian Shields and Kevin Sullivan. illus. DK/Brady Games, $45 (9780756641900).
Fifty years of smack downs.
After. By Amy Efaw. Viking, $17.99 (9780670011834).
Baby in the dumpster—why? A 2010 Best Book for Young Adults.
Babygirl Drama, v.1:
16 on the Block. By Babygirl Daniels. Urban, paper, $9.95 (9781601621849).
From group home to high rise.
Babygirl Drama, v.2:
16 1/2 on the Block. By Babygirl Daniels. Urban, paper, $9.95 (9781601621832).
Why did Latina spend three years in a detention home for girls?
Babygirl Drama, v.3:
Sister Sister. By Babygirl Daniels. Urban, paper, $9.95 (9781601621542).
Twin vs. twin.
Babygirl Drama, v.4:
Glitter. By Babygirl Daniels. Urban, paper, $9.95 (9781601621986).
Pregnant and scared. Is there anyone to trust?
Chasing Romeo. By A. J. Byrd. Kimani Tru, paper, $9.99 (9780373830909).
BFFs crushing on the same boy leads to major trouble!
Breathless. By Lurlene McDaniel. Delacorte, $10.99 (9780385734592).
Four friends face the toughest decision ever—life or death.
Brutal. By Michael Harmon. Knopf, $16.99 (9780375840999).
Taking down the status quo.
The Chosen One. By Carol Lynch Williams. St. Martin’s/Griffin, $16.95 (9780312555115).
Can 13-year-old Kyra save herself from becoming her 60-year-old uncle’s seventh wife? A 2010 Best Book for Young Adults.
Cirque du Freak Manga, v.1.
By Darren Shan. Illus. by Takahiro Arai. Yen, paper, $10.99 (9780759530416).
One visit to a freak show can change your life. A 2010 Great Graphic Novel for Teens.
Cirque du Freak Manga, v.2: The Vampire’s Assistant. By Darren Shan. Illus. by Takahiro Arai. Yen, paper, $10.99 (9780759530386).
Life as a half-vampire is never easy.
Cirque du Freak Manga, v.3:
Tunnels of Blood. By Darren Shan. Illus. by Takahiro Arai. Yen, paper, $10.99 (9780759530430).
Working for a vampire can be bloody and murderous.
Crazy Beautiful. By Lauren Baratz-Logsted. Houghton, $16 (9780547223070).
Beauty meets “The Beast,” 2010.
Dead Girl, v.1:
Dead Girl Walking. By Linda Joy Singleton. 2008. Flux, paper, $9.95 (9780738714059).
Racing against time to save her brain-dead body from being unplugged.
Dead Girl, v.2: Dead Girl Dancing. By Linda Joy Singleton. Flux, paper, $9.95 (9780738714066).
It’s spring break—off to party in a college student’s body.
Dead Girl, v.3: Dead Girl in Love. By Linda Joy Singleton. Flux, paper, $9.95 (9780738714073).
Amber’s in the coffin. Who’s walking around in her body?
Denim Diaries, v.1: Sixteen Going on Twenty-One. By Darrien Lee. 2008. Urban, paper, $9.95 (9781933967714).
True love since kindergarten.
Denim Diaries, v.2: Grown in Sixty Seconds. By Darrien Lee. Urban, paper, $9.95 (9781933967721).
Expecting a child, missing their best friends.
Denim Diaries, v.3: Queen of the Yard. By Darrien Lee. Urban, paper, $9.95 (9781933967776).
Will the gang life let her go?
Denim Diaries, v.4: Broken Promises. By Darrien Lee. Urban, paper, $9.95 (9781933967745).
What could wreck the perfect family?
Dirty Jersey. By Phillip Thomas Duck. 2008. Kimani Tru, paper, $9.99 (9780373830947).
Fame is fickle and can have a price.
Dirty South. By Phillip Thomas Duck. Kimani Tru, paper, $9.99 (9780373831425).
Family and feuds: is there a way out? (A sequel to Dirty Jersey.)
* Dope Sick. By Walter Dean Myers. Amistad, $16.99 (9780061214776).
Life on the streets with a supernatural twist.
Drama High, v.6: Courtin’ Jayd. By L. Divine. 2008. Kensington/Dafina, paper, $9.95 (9780758225368).
Boys, babies, and hair.
Drama High, v.7:
Hustlin’. By L. Divine. Kensington/Dafina, paper, $9.95 (9780758231055).
Jayd’s ups and downs.
Drama High, v.8:
Keep It Movin’. By L. Divine. Kensington/Dafina, paper, $9.95 (9780758231079).
Wheels and weaves.
Emily the Strange: The Lost Days. By Rob Reger and Jessica Gruner. HarperCollins, $16.99 (9780061452291).
Emily has amnesia—and that’s not her only problem.
Five Minutes More. By Darlene Ryan. Orca, paper, $12.95 (9781554690060).
Why would D’Arcy’s dad commit suicide?
Gifted, v.1: Out of Sight, Out of Mind
. By Marilyn Kaye. Kingfisher, paper, $7.99 (9780753462836).
Queen of Mean trapped in the life of unpopular Tracey.
Better Late than Never. By Marilyn Kaye. Kingfisher, paper, $7.99 (9780753463000).
Jenna’s dad finally shows up. Too good to be true?
Gifted, v.3: Here Today, Gone Tomorrow
. By Marilyn Kaye. Kingfisher, paper, $7.99 (9780753463109).
Kidnapped to commit crimes, can superpowers save them?
A Girl like Me. By Ni-Ni Simone. 2008. Kensington/Dafina, paper, $9.95 (9780758228437).
Leaving the hard life to live her dream.
If I Stay. By Gayle Forman. Dutton, $16.99 (9780525421030).
This life or the afterlife? A 2010 Best Book for Young Adults.
If I Was Your Girl. By Ni-Ni Simone. 2008. Kensington/Dafina, paper, $9.95 (9780758228413).
From the hottest girl around to baby mama.
Jaded. By Monica McKayhan. 2008. Kimani Tru, paper, $9.99 (9780373830992).
Can Jade handle her boyfriend’s secrets?
Deal with It. By Monica McKayhan. Kimani Tru, paper, $9.99 (9780373831418).
Friends face off over dance-team drama.
In Ecstasy. By Kate McCaffrey. Annick, $21.95 (9781554511754).
Best friends—sex, drugs, and lies.
Jacked. By Carrie Mac. Orca, paper, $9.95 (9781554691845).
Sneaking away from work was a bad idea.
* Jumping Off Swings. By Jo Knowles. Candlewick, $16.99 (9780763639495).
One pregnancy seen through the eyes of four friends. A 2010 Best Book for Young Adults.
Just Another Hero. By Sharon M. Draper. Atheneum, $16.99 (9781416907008).
Something’s going down at Hazelwood High.
Fast Forward. By Celeste O. Norfleet. Kimani Tru, paper, $9.99 (9780373831340).
Is the hot new guy telling truths or lies?
Lesson Learned. By Earl Sewell. Kimani Tru, paper, $9.99 (9780373831166).
Keysha’s mom is out of jail, and Mike tries on his player game.
Decision Time. By Earl Sewell. Kimani Tru, paper, $9.99 (9780373831722).
Will Lori steal Keysha’s man while Keysha’s on stage?
Legacy. By Thomas Sniegoski. Delacorte, $15.99 (9780385737142).
Uncovering the secrets of a superhero.
* Lockdown: Escape from Furnace. By Alexander Gordon Smith. Farrar, $14.99 (9780374324919).
Doing hard time for murder—a mile beneath the earth’s surface.
Messed Up. By Janet Nichols Lynch. Holiday, $17.95 (9780823421855).
Mom’s in prison, dad’s gone—can RD make it on his own?
Muchacho. By LouAnne Johnson. Knopf, $15.99 (9780375861178).
In Alt Ed and angry, can he keep his promise to mom? A 2010 Best Book for Young Adults.
Nightschool, v.1. By Svetlana Chmakova. Illus. by the author. Yen, paper, $10.99 (9780759528598).
Boarding school for vampires, demons, and witches. A 2010 Great Graphic Novel for Teens.
Nightschool, v.2. By Svetlana Chmakova. Illus. by the author. Yen, paper, $10.99 (9780759528604).
The lights may be off, but monsters still walk the halls. A 2010 Great Graphic Novel for Teens.
Patterson Heights. By Felicia Pride. Kimani Tru, paper, $9.99 (9780373831487).
Avery’s brother has been shot—should he avenge his murder?
* Perfect Chemistry. By Simone Elkeles. 2008. Walker, paper, $9.99 (9780802798220).
Gang member and cheerleader: it’s not exactly love at first sight.
Response. By Paul Volponi. Viking, $15.99 (9780670062836).
Is there a justification for a racially motivated beating?
Shiver. By Maggie Stiefvater. Scholastic, $17.99 (9780545123266).
Girl + Werewolf = True Love. A 2010 Best Book for Young Adults.
Shortie like Mine. By Ni-Ni Simone. 2008. Kensington/Dafina, paper, $9.95 (9780758228390).
Seven is feeling it for Josiah; rocked by her BFF’s betrayal.
Shrink to Fit. By Dona Sarkar. 2008. Kimani Tru, paper, $9.99 (9780373830954).
Leah’s “Thinspirations” will make all her dreams come true. Won’t they?
Sleepless. By Thomas Fahy. Simon & Schuster, $15.99 (9781416959014).
Taken. By Norah McClintock. Orca, paper, $12.95 (9781554691524).
Girls missing. One found dead. Is Stephanie next?
We Were Here. By Matt de la Peña. Delacorte, $17.99 (9780385736671).
Miguel did something awful. A 2010 Best Book for Young Adults.
Wintergirls. By Laurie Halse Anderson. Viking, $17.99 (9780670011100).
Dying to be thin. A 2010 Best Book for Young Adults.
The Pledge. By Chandra Sparks Taylor. Kimani Tru, paper, $9.99 (9780373830985).
It was easy to save herself for marriage until she met Allen.
Register or subscribe today