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 (YALSA) logo


2014 Selection(s)

A Moment Comes

Author: Bradbury, Jennifer. Publisher: Simon & Schuster/Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2013

Lives collide when three teens from different backgrounds become ensnared in the turmoil of the India-Pakistan partition.

All the Truth That’s In Me

Author: Berry, Julie. Publisher: Penguin/Viking Juvenile, 2013

Judith is a pariah after her tongue is cut out. But when war threatens her village she must find her voice.

Chasing Shadows

Author: Avasthi, Swati. Publishers: Random House/Knopf Books for Young Readers, 2013

In this novel/graphic-novel hybrid, Holly and Savitri each fight to save themselves and their friendship after a ruthless killer ends Chase's life.

Dear Life, You Suck

Author: Blagden, Scott. Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt/Harcourt Children’s Books, 2013

Cricket's life is wrought with pain and his future looks bleak. Should he become a professional fighter, a drug dealer, or just end it all?

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown

Author: Black, Holly. Publisher: Little, Brown/Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2013

Welcome to Coldtown, a quarantined city for vampires, the infected, and humans. The price for residence, however, is that you can never leave.

The Naturals

Author: Barnes, Jennifer Lynn. Publisher: Hyperion/Miramax, 2013

A natural profiler, 17-year-old Cassie joins a special teen FBI program and finds herself immersed in a world where everything is not as it seems.

The Sin Eater’s Confession

Author: Bick, Ilsa J. Publisher: Lerner/Carolrhoda Books, 2013

In a small Wisconsin town, rumors about Jimmy and Ben ruin Ben’s life and brutally end Jimmy’s.  Three years later, Ben decides to set the record straight.

Wise Young Fool

Author: Beaudoin, Sean. Publisher: Little, Brown/Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2013

Wannabe rock star Ritchie Sudden is spending 90 days in juvie—just enough time to tell his tale of lust, loss, and, of course, rock-and-roll.