written for ages 13-16


See it before you read it

Clare Cannon | 21 Oct 2014
written for ages 13-16 | acceptable
One of those rare occasions when the movie could be better than the book.


A story of friendship and personal tragedy

Jane Fagan | 10 Sep 2014
written for ages 13-16 | None
A young girl deals with her mother's illness.


The downside to cloning

Tim Golden | 4 Aug 2014
written for ages 13-16 | acceptable
A future society after a natural apocalypse


Tunnel fever

Tim Golden | 20 Jul 2014
written for ages 13-16 | acceptable
A 300 year old journey through a tunnel.


A must-read for young and not-so-young adults

Jennifer Minicus | 10 Jun 2014
written for ages 13-16 | highly recommended
Nazi Germany seen from an original perspective.


Mercenaries and slaves

Tim Golden | 30 May 2014
written for ages 13-16 | recommended
A tragic story about revenge.


Mysterious virus kills millions

Jennifer Minicus | 17 Mar 2014
written for ages 13-16 | recommended with reservations
It's the end of the world as we know it.


Is acting a real job?

Tim Golden | 14 Mar 2014
written for ages 13-16 | highly recommended
Ralph seeks a career in the theatre.


Unwanted children sold as slaves

Tim Golden | 18 Feb 2014
written for ages 13-16 | recommended
The plight of illegitimate children in 17th-century England was bleak.


Deathbed confession leads to mystery

Tim Golden | 20 Dec 2013
written for ages 13-16 | recommended
Brother Cadfael is on the case.


A fountain in the desert

Clare Cannon | 8 Oct 2013
written for ages 13-16 | recommended
An engaging and cultured story for young teens that actually makes them think.


Emotions, morality, sexuality: when teens are confused

Clare Cannon | 24 Sep 2013
written for ages 13-16 | not recommended
Should we back off, add fuel to the fire, or hand them a road map?


Romance in teen fiction

Clare Cannon | 30 Jul 2013
written for ages 13-16 | recommended
There’s nothing quite like a good romance. But what makes a literary romance ‘good’ or ‘bad’ for teens?


Inside a male brain

Clare Cannon | 2 Jul 2013
written for ages 13-16 | recommended
Shusterman's account seems about right to me.


King Arthur has seen better days.

Tim Golden | 3 Jun 2013
written for ages 13-16 | recommended with reservations
There are no surprises in this Arthurian tale.


Hope lends beauty to even the bleakest tale

Clare Cannon | 10 May 2013
written for ages 13-16 | highly recommended
This remarkable story teaches history, humanity and hope. Why did I avoid it for so long?!


Historical Fiction for Teens

Clare Cannon | 9 Apr 2013
written for ages 13-16 | recommended
A series that puts heart into history.


The Stravaganza Series

Tim Golden | 28 Feb 2013
written for ages 13-16 | not recommended
A series about the avenues of escape people choose when faced with difficulties.


Bright Island

Jennifer Minicus | 11 Feb 2013
written for ages 13-16 | recommended
A coming of age story for young teen girls.


The Sterkarm Handshake

Tim Golden | 20 Jan 2013
written for ages 13-16 | not recommended
The Time Tube allows people from the 21st century to travel to the 16th.

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Reading Matters is MercatorNet’s blog about children’s literature. Our goal is to enable parents and educators to find quality books for young people. For an explanation of our evaluation system, click here. We welcome reader input and new reviewers. We love comments on the book reviews. Write to us at jennifer.minicus@mercatornet.com.


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 our picks for
2-7 years 13-16 years
7-10 years 15-18 years
9-12 years 18 and over
11-14 years all ages

 our standards
highly recommended: you must read this!
recommended: age-appropriate and entertaining
acceptable: not outstanding but not problematic
some reservations: contains potentially problematic scenes or concepts
not recommended: not appropriate for intended readers


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