Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults

About the Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults
To encourage young adults to read for pleasure by presenting to them lists of popular or topical titles which are widely available in paperback and which represent a broad variety of accessible themes and genres.

Administered by:

Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) logo

Award and Frequency

This award is given out on an annual basis.

Application Instructions

To assemble a discussion list prior to Annual, members will submit nominations to the Chair by May1. The nominations shall include author, title, publisher, year of publication, price and a brief annotation specifying those qualities the member finds noteworthy. The Chair will merge the nominations into the form of a ballot for distribution to the Committee by May 15. Completed ballots must be returned to the Chair no later than June 1. Only titles receiving "yes" votes from a majority of Committee members will remain on the list for discussion at Annual.

Fill out the Nomination Form.

Contact Information

Displaying active committee roster as of 12/05/2023. Last retrieved on 12/05/2023. Members can log in and refresh page to view full contact information for committee members.

Selection Criteria

    1.        Titles must be in print and available in paperback.
    2.        Both young adult and adult titles may be considered.
    3.        Popularity is more important than literary quality.
    4.        Both fiction and non-fiction may be considered.
    5.        Copyright dates are not a consideration.
    6.        A book which has appeared on a previous Popular Paperbacks list can be selected after 5 years have passed since it last appeared on the list.
    7.       Nominations from authors or publishers for their own titles are not eligible for the list.
    8.       Each committee will have the latitude to select its own topics (this will ensure the inclusion of timely topics, currently fashionable subjects, and fads) but as a matter of course certain perennially popular genres, topics or themes should be considered.  Some examples are:  adventure, autobiography/biography/diaries, best sellers, fantasy, graphic novels, historical fiction, horror, humor, music, mystery, new voices, romance, science fiction, short stories, sports, suspense, and thrillers.
   9.       Standard selection criteria consistent with the ALA Library Bill of Rights shall be applied.
   10.      Librarianship focuses on individuals, in all their diversity, and that focus is a fundamental value of the Young Adult Library Services Association and its members.  Diversity is, thus, honored in the Association and in the collections and services that libraries provide to young adults.