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Top 15 books for preschoolers, kids and teens

Melissa Chapman and her brood of three live in the urban concrete jungle of NYC. She writes Kids in the City Kids in the City a weekly column and blog for the Staten Island Advance, contributes to SheKnows, Time Out NY Kids Time Out N...

Get your kids reading!

Although these days most kids would rather be plugged into a video game than a book, there is no better way for kids to stretch their imaginations, explore their emotions, expand their vocabularies and ultimately gain a better understanding of the world they live in then for them to sit down and turn the pages of a three dimensional paperback or hardcover book! Writer and blogger Melissa Chapman picks her top 15 books for the pre-school, grade-school and tween/teen set.

Top five books for teens

Your teen reader will enjoy books that help them navigate this often-turbulent stage of development and will help set the stage for a lifetime of reading.

Get your kids reading!


by Sarah Burningham

This book provides readers with a crash course in understanding boys, Boyology delves into the many mysteries of teen guys, dissecting flirting tactics, offering dating suggestions, and providing tips on forming solid friendships. Speaks to girls age 10-13 in a smart, entertaining, informative way about that most illusive creature – boys! It's an up-close-and-personal look at boys in their natural habitats, with analyses by teen girls—and insight from the boys.

Allie Finkle's Rules for Girls, Moving Day

by Meg Cabot

From the author of The Princess Diaries this series for the tween set follows a relatable fourth grader named Allie as she tries to navigate life with two pesky little brothers, a big smelly dog that she loves and being the "new girl" in school. Allie decides that since there are so many unwritten rules to remember about friendship, family, school, fashion and fun that she needs to start writing them down so she won't forget them. And when one of the girls in Allie's new class, Rosemary, says she's going to beat Allie up after school, like so many girl readers, Allie will have to figure out a way to best handle the situation!


by Amy Efaw

This thought-provoking book introduces readers to the main character, Devon, a straight-A typical sixteen year-old high school student that has just given birth and (brace yourself!) discards her baby in the trash. The readers are asked to follow her on a journey as she navigates the courts and is charged with attempted murder. But this book is so much more than another tale of a pregnant teen gone awry; it's about the power of denial and the ultimate journey toward clarity and redemption.

How to Raise Your Parents

By Sarah Burningham

Being a teen (or the parent of a teen) doesn't have to be so hard. How to Raise Your Parents will help teens and their parents navigate those years between training bras and keys to the family car. In a voice teens will relate to and parents will appreciate, this book offers smart advice about negotiation and parental hot buttons and a little insight about what the world looks like from a parent's point of view.

Catching Fire (2nd book in The Hunger Games series)

by Suzanne Collins 

Each year in Panem, the dystopian country that exists where the U.S. used to be, the "Capitol" holds a televised tournament in which two teens from each of the surrounding districts fight a gruesome battle to the death. Catching Fire, which is the follow up to the hugely successful The Hunger Games finds the winners of the battle – Katniss and Peeta – back home in their district and inspiring a rebellion. Fans of the series will love this installment and it will leave them hungering for the final book in the series.

Catching Fire has everything that appeals to teen readers: a touch of romance, disillusionment with the system, death and destruction and most importantly, great characters that they'll will grow to love the way they did with the Harry Potter series.  "The high quality writing and speed at which the story takes place will make you feel like you are watching a film, not reading a book. Readers will love the excitement of this book. This is the story young adult readers are talking about…it's the 'water cooler book of the year' to put in terms that adults understand, and you don't want to miss out on the conversation!" says Liz Marotte, Young Adult Fiction Buyer for Borders.

 Tell us: What is your top pick for the best book for teens? Comment below!

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