Top Ten Tuesday


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme by The Artsy Reader. This week’s topic is hidden gems. We’re talking the books that you can’t believe more people aren’t talking about. As a life long reader, I have plenty of books that I loved that fall in this category.

  1. Dead Inside by Jeyn Roberts. This is like a fresh take on the zombie genre. Four teens are fighting to survive in a world were most people have become crazed (but not brain dead) killing machines. It’s suspenseful, it’s taut, and it’s a damn shame more people didn’t read it.
  2. The Forbidden Game by LJ Smith. Old school LJ Smith books are some of my favorite books I read as a teen. This one is kind of her take on a spin on Jumanji. It’s a well planned trilogy and you can buy all three books for ten bucks in a rebound edition.
  3. Night World by LJ Smith. Another series by LJ Smith that’s been rebound about a million times. It’s nine books in total (we don’t talk about the tenth book that is never ever going to be released), and spans all sorts of classic mythological creatures. All of the stories interconnect, and they’re just a plain old fun ride.
  4. 13 Little Blue Envelopes by Maureen Johnson. This book is seriously so cute. Ginny gives up control of her life for a summer to follow the instructions her Aunt leaves her in 13 envelopes. It’s a journey of finding yourself and learning to let loose.
  5. Tortall Series by Tamora Pierce. There are over 20 books in this series (and it started in 1983!?!?) and they span a long era in the history of Tortall. These books are my gold standard for the fantasy genre and I wish more people would read them (so I could talk about them more).
  6. Darkest Powers Series by Kelley Armstrong. I love this series. So much. They were some of my favorite books that I read while I was in middle school (I once even emailed the author about them). They’re just fun, fast reads. I don’t want to spoil them for you, but I highly recommend you check them out.
  7. Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants by Ann Brashares. Listen, I know this series was huge, but it really has dropped off the YA contemporary map in recent years. It’s a wholesome, well written series about a group of best friends and some magical pants. What’s not to like?
  8. Uglies by Scott Westerfield. Another series that was super popular, but seems to have dropped off the radar a bit. With the series about to continue, I would highly recommend you get into the series now.

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  1. Oh, I loved 13 Little Blue Envelopes! I think I initially read it because I thought it was 13 Reasons Why, glad it wasn’t though! Way more cheerful and adorable. I typically hate contemporary books, but that one was awesome.

    Also, Impostors is coming out by Scott Westerfeld, it’s a new spin off of the Uglies series. Maybe it will help put that series back on the map.

  2. I just saw a tweet from a librarian asking other librarians what older series still flew off the shelves, and Uglies was mentioned. I think word of mouth is so key to books being popular with teens, and once one group has grown past teenhood, the books get quickly forgotten. Three years ago I couldn’t keep TFIOS or 13 Reasons Why on my classroom shelves, and already kids have no idea what either of those books are.

    Tamora Pierce is one of the first authors I discovered because my students told me to read her. That was probably 15 years ago though! I did really enjoy her.

  3. Dead Inside sounds awesome! I’ll definitely look that up! And I need to read more Kelley Armstrong- I’ve read three or four of her books now but I haven’t started any of her older long running series.

  4. I didn’t know Uglies is continuing! I read it and the second book a long long time ago when it was really hyped but wasn’t really into the series much so I stopped after the second book.

  5. I am so happy to see another fan of LJ Smith. I considered including Nightworld, Forbidden Game, and Dark Visions on my list, but settled on just my fave of the three, Forbidden Game. Great list!

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