It’s time for Top Ten Tuesday! This week The Broke and The Bookish are asking which books from the past ten years we hope will still be read 30 years from now. This got me wondering about books which were popular 30 years ago. So of course I had to investigate. Which naturally leads to me being sidetracked. I am pretty confident that every generation hears from the older one something along the lines of “You have no idea how good you’ve got it” and “When I was your age….” Well, let me tell you, teens today have it so good when in comes to awesome books! I did some digging and here is a little peak at what teens in the 1980s had to read. That’s right, 30 years ago was 1982!
So You Want to Be a Wizard by Diane Duane, 1983. Before Harry, Ron and Hermoine, there were Nita and Kit and the Wizard’s Oath. My teens still read this series.
My Sweet Audrina by V.C. Andrews, 1982. This one came in the midst of the disturbing Flowers in the Attic series. We don’t have too much V.C. Andrews in our library collection, but I bet people are still reading her books.
Forever by Judy Blume was published in 1975, but I am sure teens in 1982 were reading it. Annie on My Mind by Nancy Garden was a groundbreaking, earth shattering, scandal-causing book in 1982 and it remains a troublemaker today. Other popular young adult authors from the 80s include Cynthia Voigt (Dicey’s Song), Tamora Pierce (Alanna), Paula Danzinger (There’s a Bat in Bunk Five), Lois Duncan (Stranger With My Face), and Richard Peck (Ghosts I have Been, 1977). Thirty years later, teens are still picking up their books. Now let’s look at today’s YA authors. Here are ten books that I hope will withstand the test of time and be read thirty years from now…in 2042 (holy cow, that sounds like a Sci-Fi date!). Anyhoo…
1. The Ranger’s Apprentice series by John Flanagan. Action, adventure, medieval times, great characters-these books have it all. I hope they stick around for a long time.
2. The House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer. This book was published ten years ago and it continues to be relevant and exciting. I just hope that in 30 years a book about human cloning won’t we “old news.” The whole idea freaks me out. Let’s hope it’s still considered science fiction in 2042. Then again, if human cloning is reality, this could be a great “clones are humans too” book.
3. Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld. This series is a fun blend of steampunk and historical fiction and it is full of awesome illustrations. To be honest, people just need to always read Scott Westerfeld’s books. They rock.
4. Percy Jackson and the Olympians series by Rick Riordan. These books have the winning formula-action, humor, and epic battles. I hope kids discover and enjoy Percy for years to come.
5. The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak. I can’t imagine a time when World War II stopped being a popular topic and this book is one of the best.
6. The Bloody Jack series by L.A. Meyer. If I haven’t already convinced you that Jacky Faber is the most amazing heroine ever, I don’t know what else I can do! Get the audio, sit back, and enjoy. You can thank me later.
7. The Gone series by Michael Grant. Again, I cannot say it enough-I love Michael Grant. He is a genius and his books are addictive. And disturbing. Teens of the future must know Michael Grant. And maybe sometime in the next 30 years someone will give these poor books better covers!
8. The Gallagher Girls series by Ally Carter. Maybe in 30 years these seem quaint and simple because everyone will have awesome spy gadgets. Whatever. These books will still be awesome fun.
9. Sorta Like a Rock Star by Matthew Quick. This may be the best book you’ve never read. It’s fun and uplifting and has a wonderful message. I hope teens are still wanting books like this in 30 years. I need to remember to recommend this one more often.
10. Okay for Now by Gary Schmidt. Another charming, feel-good book and a must read.
And just for the fun of it, some honorable mentions: Five Flavors of Dumb by Antony John, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian by Sherman Alexie, Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi, The Drake Chronicles by Alyxandra Harvey, The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart, The Curse Workers by Holly Black, and anything John Green or Libba Bray. Ok! Enough. Thanks for sticking it out to the end of this monstrously long post!