Best Fiction for Young Adults

About the Best Fiction for Young Adults The books, recommended for ages 12-18, meet the criteria of both good quality literature and appealing reading for teens. The list comprises a wide range of genres and styles, including contemporary realistic fiction, fantasy, horror, science fiction and novels in verse.

YALSA's Best Fiction for Young Adults (BFYA) Committee evolved from a committee established under the School Libraries Section of ALA, which was charged with producing a list of 1930s "Best Books for Young People."  The committee has undergone several changes of focus and names over the years, including the Book Selection Committee (1954), and later the Committee for the Selection of Significant Adult Books for Young People (1963). It became the Best Books for Young Adults Committee (BBYA) in 1966. As publishing for the young adult market grew exponentially (over 2,000 titles per year in 2008) and seven other YALSA selection and award lists for young adults were created since its inception, Best Books for Young Adults was restructured and named Best Fiction for Young Adults by the YALSA Board of Directors at the midwinter meeting in 2010.  

Administered by:

Young Adult Library Services Association logo

2013 Selection(s)

Call the Shots

Author: Calame, Don. Publisher: Candlewick, 2012.

Sean, Matt, and Coop have pulled off a few schemes in the past, but can they manage to make a low-budget horror film?

The Diviners

Author: Bray, Libba. Publisher: Little Brown Books for Young Readers, 2012.

New age, old magic.

Every Other Day

Author: Barnes, Jennifer Lynn. Publisher: Egmont, 2011

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be something else every other day? Kali D’Angelo is just that; an “Other,” or so she calls herself, invincible one day human the next. When Kali comes across a student who has an ouroboros mark, giving her moments to live; she ventures into a dangerous world where few survive the things that go bump in the night.

Long Lankin

Author: Barraclough, Lindsey. Publisher: Candlewick Press, 2012.

In a town paralyzed with fear over the presence of a nightmarish creature, sisters Cora and Mimi learn that Long Lankin may be the least of their problems.

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl

Author: Andrews, Jesse. Publisher: Abrams/Amulet Books, 2012

Greg and Earl are forced to spend time with a classmate recently diagnosed with leukemia. Will their lives change for the better or just stay the same as usual?

Shadow and Bone

Author: Bardugo, Leigh. Publisher: Henry Holt and Company, 2012.

Alina discovers she has secret powers and must try abolishing the monsters of the Fold.

Tiger Lilly

Author: Anderson, Jodi Lynn. Publisher: HarperCollins/HarperTeen, 2012

Before Wendy came into Peter Pan's life, there was only Tiger Lily.

Unspoken: The Lynburn Legacy

Author: Brennan, Sarah Rees. Publisher: Random House Books/Random House Books for Young Readers, 2012.

Your imaginary friend turns out to be not so imaginary. Meeting him brings its own mystery and conflicts. Which do you trust more what you’ve always known or what you see?

Wonder Show

Author: Barnaby, Hannah. Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Children’s Books, 2012.

Portia is looking for another new beginning and a place to belong. Does she have a strong enough constitution to do it at the travelling freak show?