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YALSA’s 2013 Teens’ Top Ten Nominations Announced!

Happy Celebrate Teen Literature Day! Every year, YALSA sponsors this event, which “seeks to showcase some award-winning authors and books in the genre, as well as highlight librarians’ expertise in connecting teens with books and other reading materials.” Celebrate Teen Literature Day is when the Teen Read Week website is launched … and when the Teens’ Top Ten nominations are announced!

The Teens’ Top Ten is a “teen choice” list where every title is nominated and voted on by teens. The 2013 nominations have been posted on the YALSA website so that teens across the country can read them all summer; voting will take place Aug. 15 – Sept. 15 via YALSA’s brand new Teens’ Top Ten site for teens at, and the winners will be announced during Teen Read Week in October.

YALSA encourages librarians and library workers to visit the Teens’ Top Ten site to access resources, such as a free Teens’ Top Ten Toolkit, that will help them promote the titles all summer long to their teen patrons, so the teens are ready to vote in August.

Without further ado, here are the nominated titles for YALSA’s 2013 Teens’ Top Ten list!

  • Crewel by Gennifer Albin
    (Macmillan/Farrar Straus Giroux, 2012; 9780374316419)
    In a futuristic world, Spinsters are women with the power to weave everything into form, whether it be food, buildings, or peoples’ very lives. Adelice Lewys has this talent, and she is whisked away into a world of luxury and elegance because of it. Although it is often advertised at the perfect life, it is far from it as things are never how they seem.
  • Of Poseidon by Anna Banks
    (Macmillan/Feiwel & Friends, 2012; 9781250027368)
    Emma has never really questioned her ability to communicate with fish, her strange violet eyes, or her awkwardness on land, but when her best friend, Chloe, dies in a shark attack and the attractive, mysterious Galen keeps showing up in her life, Emma soon learns that she belongs in a different world –- one that is underwater. In the meantime, Galen, the prince of the Syrena, must learn why Emma seems to not quite fit in with either the humans or the Syrena while battling the strong attraction he feels towards her. As the relationship between the two develops, they are faced with difficult decisions between duty and desire that could lead to a huge change of Syrena history.
  • Underworld by Meg Cabot
    (Scholastic/Point, 2012; 9780545284110)
    In the second book of the Abandon series, Pierce Oliviera has been — yet again — kidnapped by John Hayden, the ruler of the Underworld. However, this time she can’t escape, and when she gets a video on her phone predicting her cousin Alex’s death, Pierce panics and begs John for help. She will do anything if only he will help her cousin out, including staying with him forever in the Underworld.
  • Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore
    (Penguin Group/Dial, 2012; 9780803734739)
    When her evil father, King Leck, dies, Bitterblue is made queen of a kingdom she knows nothing about. As she struggles to come to terms with both who she is and the legacy her father left on the city, Bitterblue tries to discover the secrets of her father’s crimes by walking the streets of her own city in disguise. Filled with struggle, suspense and surprises, will she be able to turn her kingdom into a better place?
  • Poison Princess by Kresley Cole
    (Simon & Schuster, 2012; 9781442436640)
    What really happens at the end of the world? Cannibals, Baggers, people try to sell you — and in this world, sixteen-year-old Evie is one of the few healthy teen girls. Evie sets out on a quest to find herself, all while things heat up between her and Jackson, the troubled bad boy from across the tracks. She knows life will get even worse as she comes to realize that she isn’t like other people. Luckily, or maybe unluckily for her, Jackson is the only one that can help her survive.
  • Skinny by Donna Cooner
    (Scholastic/Point, 2012; 9780545427630)
    Ever has always wanted to live in a fairy tale, but with 302 pounds weighing her down, it’s difficult to achieve. It’s even harder with Skinny, her own private critic, constantly belittling her. In this inspirational tale, Ever discovers the truth of learning how to overcome and accept the issues that plague her.
  • Kill Me Softly by Sarah Cross
    (Egmont, 2012; 9781606843239)
    After being raised her whole life by her fairy godmothers, Mirabelle runs away to the town where they said her parents died. But when she gets there, she starts to notice that it isn’t any ordinary town and that the teens who live there are fated to play out the Grimms’ fairy tales. So when Mira finds out that she, too, has a role to play, it’s only a matter of time before her story could lose its happy ending.
  • Croak by Gina Damico
    (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt/Graphia, 2012; 9780547608327)
    Lexington “Lex” Bartleby is a juvenile delinquent who is sent to her uncle Mort’s after her latest stunt. Once there she discovers that she is a Grim Reaper. She was born to have the ability to take the souls from dead bodies and send them to the Afterlife. On the job, she feels the need for justice for the poor people who have died, but they aren’t allowed to do anything but transport the souls. As she deals with this struggle, her limits are tested as she discovers how far she will go to help the souls and herself.
  • The Hunt by Andrew Fukuda
    (Macmillan/St. Martin’s Griffin, 2012; 9781250005298)
    For as long as he can remember, Gene’s father has always taught him how to keep a low profile so no one can notice that he’s different. He can’t run as fast, he can go outside in the daytime, and he doesn’t have a lust for blood. Gene is human, and each day is a battle to keep his secret locked away or be devoured by everyone around him. When he is chosen for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to hunt the last few remaining humans, he is thrust into the fight of his life and into the orbit of a girl who makes him feel things he never thought possible. Little does he know, however, she has a few secrets of her own.
  • 172 Hours on the Moon by Johan Harstad
    (Little, Brown & Company, 2012; 9780316182881)
    When NASA holds a world-wide contest for returning to the moon, no one — not even the three teenage participants — can fathom what is really in store for them up on the airless, empty gray mass. Or is it truly empty … ? Unbeknownst to them, what they find up there will change not only their lives, but the lives of everyone on Earth.
  • Seraphina by Rachel Hartman
    (Random House, 2012; 9780375866562)
    Dragons and humans have finally achieved peace, and the anniversary celebration is fast approaching. For Seraphina Dombegh, who is half dragon and half human, life is about blending in. However, a series of events will place her in the path of the Prince Lucian, Captain of the Queen’s Guard, and a hunt for a killer determined to start a war.
  • Wake by Amanda Hocking
    (Macmillan/St. Martin’s Griffin, 2012; 9781250005649)
    Three mysterious girls have just blown into town, and everyone has their eyes on them. Little does everyone know, they also have their eyes on the towns’ residences. Gemma in particular has caught their eyes, and they want her. Little does Gemma know, she’s about to be thrown into a situation she might not be able to get out of.
  • Tilt by Ellen Hopkins
    (Simon & Schuster/Margaret K. McElderry Books, 2012; 9781416983309)
    Tilt tells the story of three teenagers, all wondering about who they are and how they fit into the world. One struggles with a teen pregnancy, another deals with AIDS, while the last must overcome an abusive relationship. As things begin to change drastically, with them not in control, all they can do is hang on for the ride.
  • Enchanted by Alethea Kontis
    (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2012; 9780547645704)
    Sunday loves to write stories; the only problem is that when she reads them aloud, they tend to come true. So when a frog claiming to be a cursed human comes along, he asks her to do two things: to read a few stories that won’t harm anyone and to kiss him. When you kiss an enchanted animal — or in this case, a frog — the enchanted will return to his true self. What Sunday doesn’t know is that if she kisses him, her life will change forever.
  • Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers
    (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2012; 9780544022492)
    Ismae is the daughter of the God of Death. After a near escape to a convent from her arranged marriage, Ismae is trained in the arts of a handmaiden of Death: assassination. Sent to the household of a possible traitor, Gavriel, Ismae begins to see glimpses of faults within her convent and honor in the man she is sent to spy on. Despite any feelings or doubts, she knows her first duty is to Death, but she has to wonder: what will her duty cost her and the man she is coming to love?
  • Butter by Erin Jade Lange
    (Bloomsbury, 2012; 9781599907802)
    Butter is a morbidly obese teenager who is sick of being invisible but who doesn’t really want to make a splash either. One day, he’s finally pushed over the edge, and he posts a blog about his last meal, the one that he plans will kill him. This blog post brings him instant popularity, making Butter happy for once in his life. But Butter knows that his life is still far from perfect, and he must struggle with himself to determine who he will be and what course his life will take.
  • Monument 14 by Emmy Laybourne
    (Macmillan/Feiwel & Friends, 2012; 9780312569037)
    Monument 14 is a book filled with terror, fear, and love, all inside a supermarket where fourteen kids are trapped . They are unable to leave as a monster hailstorm has hit, leading to variety of other disasters like a chemical weapon spill. Now they must find a way to escape their town, Monument, and get to safety in Alaska.
  • Every Day by David Levithan
    (Random House/Alfred A. Knopf, 2012; 9780307931887)
    A wakes up in a different body every day. It has always been that way for A, and A has rules to live by, like not getting too involved in the person’s life. Then A meets Rhiannon, the girlfriend of Justin, the boy whose body A is inhabiting. Suddenly, none of the rules apply because A is falling for Rhiannon and she won’t leave A’s mind even after A has left Justin’s body…
  • Son by Lois Lowry
    (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2012; 9780547887203)
    In this new branch of the dystopian story started by The Giver, we follow the life of Claire, a birthmother in Jonas’s community. When Claire gives birth and her baby is taken from her, we see the first signs of emotion from someone besides Jonas in the community. In this riveting tale about the strength of a mother’s love, you’ll be whisked through an epic adventure of good vs. evil that explores the concepts of freedom, love, and sacrifice.
  • I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga
    (Little, Brown & Company, 2012; 9780316125833)
    Jazz is the son of an infamous serial killer and has witnessed crime scenes from the killer’s point of view. So when a body is discovered, Jazz wants to use the skills he knows to help find the killer. However, he’s not just trying to prove to other people that he’s not like his father; he’s also trying to prove it to himself despite what he already knows.
  • Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry
    (Harlequin Teen, 2012; 9780373210862)
    Echo is a high school girl with “freaky” scars on her arms and no memory of how it happened. Noah is the high school stoner who uses girls and has no future. Over the course of their senior year, their lives will intersect in a way they never could have imagined, going through a journey that will prove to thems and each other that they are more than what their reputations demand.
  • The False Prince by Jennifer Nielsen
    (Scholastic/Scholastic Press, 2012; 9780545284141)
    In a faraway land, civil war is brewing. To unify his kingdom’s divided people, a nobleman named Conner devises a cunning plan to find an impersonator of the king’s long-lost son and install him on the throne. Four orphans are forced to compete for the role, including a defiant and clever boy named Sage. Sage knows that Conner’s motives are more than questionable, yet his life balances on a sword’s point — he must be chosen to play the prince or he will certainly be killed. His rivals have their own agendas as well, so Sage must trust no one and keep his thoughts hidden. As Sage moves from a rundown orphanage to Conner’s sumptuous palace, layer upon layer of lies unfold, until finally, a truth is revealed that may very well prove more dangerous than all the lies taken together.
  • Between the Lines by Jodi Picoult
    (Simon & Schuster/Simon Pulse, 2012; 9781451635812)
    Delilah is a lonely, straight-A, freshman student who is shunned by nearly everyone at her school except for her punk best friend, Jules. Her mother pushes her to get out more by making her join the swim team even though she always gets last place. Her father left her for another family and never visits. So it’s no wonder she would rather spend her days reading. She finds a fairy tale that she can’t stop reading and falls in the love with the prince of the story. Too bad he’s not real … or is he?
  • Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes
    (Penguin Group/Razorbill, 2012; 9781595145840)
    War is brewing and unrest is widespread. The breaking point is a single incident in the dying nation of Paelsia. While three kingdoms battle for power, four young people find themselves greatly affected by it as they experience things like betrayal and war.
  • Insurgent by Veronica Roth
    (Harper Collins/Katherine Tegen Books, 2012; 9780062024039)
    In the sequel to Divergent, Tris Prior is safe at the Amity compounds with her fellow survivors. With the whole city at war with itself and Jeannine looking for all the Divergent, Tris must learn to embrace her own divergence and understand it, though it might prove a dangerous task.
  • Immortal City by Scott Speer
    (Penguin Group/Razorbill, 2012; 9781595146014)
    The Immortal City: where guardian angels only protect the richest people and it’s the hottest, trendiest thing to be an angel. Maddy doesn’t quite understand what all the hype on angels is about, but when the most desired angel, Jacks, asks her for help, she finds out more about angels than she ever expected possible. Soon after, they immediately fall in love. But when someone threatens this love, what will they do about it?
  • The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
    (Scholastic/Scholastic Press, 2012; 9780545424929)
    The Raven Boys is a thrilling adventure that captures you and takes you down the supernatural path with a daring girl named Blue, four complicated guys, and one life-altering quest and mystery of finding the Glendower King.
  • Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein
    (Disney/Hyperion, 2012; 9781423152880)
    Verity is held captive by the Gestapo in 1943. She is told to reveal the secrets of the pilot who brought her to France or face the brutal consequences. As she does this, she weaves a story of an unlikely friendship and the bonds formed by it. Their tales intertwined form a suspenseful, breathtaking narrative of espionage — hope — horror — and friendship that spans untold secrets!


  1. I tried to anticipate the books on the list but I’ve only read 5. No Shadow and Bone or The Selection? Bogus!

  2. Richard Opie Richard Opie

    I am Australian so most of the books are unfamiliar but I have read Everyday bu David Levithan and found it great. The premise is different and emotionally catching. The main character is engaging and charming and vital. His adventures matter to the reader. Changing bodies everyday allows the young reader to explore a wide variety of youth issues safely and with I think, developing empathy. A must read.

  3. k k

    Wow, I thought for sure I would have read more books that made the list. As of now I have only read two, Pushing the Limits and Of Poseidon although I did love both.

  4. Linda Greenbaum Linda Greenbaum

    Thank you for the list. It would be helpful to have it available in a pamphlet form for easy distribution. Would this be possible?

  5. Rox Rox

    I hope Poission Princess make it to the top ten, it was really an outstanding book amazingly put together. Now, i think i’ll go reading some of the nominated, they looked very interesting.

  6. Miranda Hembree Miranda Hembree

    I love reading books at home and at school

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