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Novels for 16 year olds

(37 Posts)
HoggleHoggle Thu 16-Jun-16 07:49:52

Would be very grateful for reading suggestions for a 16 yr old! Would ideally like to avoid the teen lit genre, but am at a loss as to what to choose. I remember reading things like Pride and Prejudice at that age but I don't think she's going to be keen on that.

I was wondering about The Poisonwood Bible?

All thoughts appreciated!

MrsSchadenfreude Thu 16-Jun-16 07:57:01

DD1 likes all the "older" science fiction like John Wyndham. Also Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights. Will have another think!

Phalarope Thu 16-Jun-16 08:00:06

Dodie Smith, I Capture The Castle?
Think i was slightly obsessed by JD Salinger at 16, and Sylvia Plath's The Bell Jar.

HoggleHoggle Thu 16-Jun-16 08:49:10

Oooh, The Bell Jar! Had totally forgotten about that.

Thanks for all suggestions, am looking at them now

Seeline Thu 16-Jun-16 08:52:58

At that age I remember reading @Diana@ by R F Delderfield and The Thorn Birds - I was inspired after watching both on the TV.

HoggleHoggle Thu 16-Jun-16 08:54:25

I just had a thought about To Kill A Mockingbird - what do you think - too heavy? I didn't read it until my 20s

Ningnang2000 Thu 16-Jun-16 08:54:32

I capture the castle by Nancy Mitford. Forever by Judy Blume.
Anne Frank's diary. If she hasn't read it already.
The hunger games.
Radio times had got a top 100 children's books list which includes teenager appropriate books. You might get inspiration from there.

GetAHaircutCarl Thu 16-Jun-16 08:54:38

Why would you want to avoid YA literature?

Phalarope Thu 16-Jun-16 10:04:30

I think Mockingbird would be spot on - sure it was a GCSE set text at some point. Similarly, Of Mice and Men?

Nancy Mitford mentioned above: not sure what I'd have made of her as a teen, but The Pursuit of Love etc could be a hit?

MrsSchadenfreude Thu 16-Jun-16 11:19:09

Yes to the Pursuit of Love. How about Rumer Godden's books? They are a bit different - The Greengage Summer, The Peacock Spring, Coromandel Sea Change, An Episode of Sparrows. How about Doris Lessing's Children of Violence series? I loved Martha Quest at that age.

HoggleHoggle Thu 16-Jun-16 11:56:22

Great thank you, a few I'm not familiar with at all here so I'm getting up to speed with all of them. Some I want to read!

I also wondered about Pullman/His Dark Materials? I read them when I was 18 and was totally blown away.

Getahaircutcarl I'm avoiding YA partly because she reads that anyway and I would like to introduce her to something different, and partly because I have no clue about YA fiction and ideally I would get her at least one book that I could talk to her about.

When I was 15/16 my stepdad bought me about 30 of those £1 penguin classics and from there I read Bronte/Austen/Dickens etc. I don't think that's right here, but I'd like to do a similar thing in terms of new things for her to read.

cdtaylornats Thu 16-Jun-16 15:12:08

The Bartimaeus trilogy by Jonathan Stroud
Virals series by Kathy Reichs

Bebelala21 Mon 20-Jun-16 16:50:58

How about Attwood's 'The Handmaid's Tale' or some gritty crime drama. At 16 I was hooked on crime and also historical fiction. I'd just get her to try lots of different genres until she finds something she likes. It doesn't have to be a Classic. (I'm an English teacher at a 13-18 school).

WriteMeBiteMe Mon 20-Jun-16 17:39:36

I devoured Stephen King at that age, The Stand, Carrie. There's probably more modern ones now. Although I re-read Carrie recently, 20 years later and it's still a brilliant book

BertrandRussell Mon 20-Jun-16 17:42:13

Sorry to be an arse- but why isn't 16 year old picking his or her own books?

BertrandRussell Mon 20-Jun-16 17:42:58

Just seen it's "her", sorry.

HoggleHoggle Mon 20-Jun-16 18:00:36

Bertrand it's her birthday, I asked what she wanted, she said books.

Thanks for more suggestions. I'm finding it really hard. This is for a much younger sister than me and I'm finding it hard to judge. Id love to get something like The Handmaid's Tale as suggested but I'm just not sure she's into deeper reads like that. That probably sounds extremely scathing, I don't mean it to, but I want to get her something she genuinely enjoys rather than I want her to enjoy iykwim?

The Book People have a 'coming of age' set which I wondered about. But they're rated as 11+ so maybe too young. I can't really remember being 16! It's got The Perks of Being a Wallflower in it which I remember reading.

Helmetbymidnight Mon 20-Jun-16 18:03:37

I just read holly bournes 'am I normal yet' it's a really nice read - YA fiction can be really good/exciting I think.

NerrSnerr Mon 20-Jun-16 18:05:48

I also loved Stephen King at that age (still do).

Glamourgates Mon 20-Jun-16 18:08:55

Only Ever Yours by Louise O'Neill

chipsandpeas Mon 20-Jun-16 18:09:33

i was reading stephen king, deen koontz at that age as well as jackie collins and jilly cooper
still read their stuff 20+ years later

MariaSklodowska Mon 20-Jun-16 18:12:44

One Flew over the Cuckoo's nest
Brave New World
Clockwork Orange
Madam Bovary
Catcher in the Rye
The Female Eunuch

TranquilityofSolitude Mon 20-Jun-16 18:12:59

How about the Cazalet Chronicles? I remember reading them and loving the family dynamics.

PerspicaciaTick Mon 20-Jun-16 18:16:45

Take her to the library and let her loose in the adult fiction area.
She is old enough to be able to read a blurb and decide for herself.

Although I personally recommend Mort, Equal Rites and Wee Free Men (all by Terry Pratchett).

Or The Moss Witch by Sara Maitland is good - a collection of short stories (each a mix of science and magic) accompanied by an essay by the different scientists who advised Sara on the scientific content. Or even better, A Book of Spells also by Sara Maitland - more feminist magic realism,

Or how about The Life and Loves of a She Devil by Fay Weldon? Or (as an introduction to reading proper books) Letters to Alice on first reading Jane Austen (also Fay Weldon).

Or Angela Carter's fairytales?

Cathpot Mon 20-Jun-16 18:21:01

I got into Isabella Allende at that age ( a long time ago) with house of spirits but I think I was also reading a eclectic mix of 'racy' trash like Lace and my dads Gerald Seymour novels. At 16 she can access adult novels I would have thought? A few I've I've enjoyed lately which I think are teenager friendly in that not to distressing - the miniaturist, the lie tree, state of wonder, the first 15 lives of Harry August, wool trilogy - it's such a broad request really. What sort of things does she like- fantasy/ family sagas/ detective etc then we could make more specific recommendations?

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