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7 Books for Teens: Good Books to Give as Gifts this Holiday Season

As a mom to three young adults, I know that it can sometimes be a challenge to get a teenager to pick up a book and start reading. If your teen is bored and looking for something to do this winter, here is a selection of young adult novels that they might love. With adventure, fantasy, sweet romance, magic and mystery, there’s something here for every reading taste—and they make terrific last minute gifts, too. 

Eat Your Heart Out by Kelly deVos

A group of teens who are forced to go to fat camp over the holiday break will have to deal with more than health meals and a new fitness routine. When Vivian and the rest of the campers arrive at Featherlite camp, they discover the place is infested with hungry zombies. The teen campers must band together and fight the zombies during one of the worst blizzards in Arizona history if they want to get out of there alive.

If This Gets Out by Sophie Gonzales and Cale Dietrich

Ruben, Zach, Angel and Jon are best friends and band mates in America’s hottest boy band, Saturday. When Ruben and Zach’s friendship becomes something more, they feel the pressure to keep their relationship a secret. They want their fans to know the truth, but they worry how the world might react. Will their romance be accepted, and will they get the support they need and deserve?

The Falling Girls by Hayley Krischer

Jadis can’t believe that her best friend Shade wants to try out for cheerleading. But Shade has her heart set on it, and when she makes the squad, she befriends ‘The Chloes,’ the trio of girls who rule the team. When one of the Chloes dies at the homecoming dance, Shade wonders if her best friend Jadis could have been jealous enough to commit murder. 

Ski Weekend by Rektok Ross

If your teen loves adventure books, consider picking up Ski Weekend. When a group of teens crash their SUV into a snowbank in the middle of a storm, not everyone will make it out of the mountains alive. Harsh winter elements, the vast wilderness, limited supplies and minimal survival skills make things extremely difficult, but Sam is determined that she and her brother will get home. 

When We Were Them by Laura Taylor Namey

Willa, Luz and Britton have been the best of friends, but when Willa ruins everything with an act of betrayal, the damage is done. On the brink of high school graduation, Willa must revisit moments and mistakes to make amends and repair their bond. Lyrical and poetic, this novel about friendship and how we are able to grow apart and back together again will mesmerize your teen reader.

Bend in the Road by Sara Biren

A sweet farm girl and a teen rock star – sounds like a match, right? Not quite. Gabe’s second album was a bust so he goes home to his family’s farm to lick his wounds. Juniper and her mother run the farm, and they don’t need a rock star getting in the way of how they do things. When Juniper finds out that Gabe may inherit the farm, she fears that he’ll sell it and leave her and her mom with nothing. She decides to ‘keep the enemy close’ but her plan backfires. Maybe Gabe’s not the enemy she thought he was? Bend in the Road is a sweet romance your teen (and you too!) will swoon over!

The Forgotten Memories of Vera Glass by Anna Priemaza

Vera has forgotten something, but she’s not quite sure what – or who – it is. When she learns that her best friend Riven is also feeling like something is amiss, they decide to figure out what’s going on. In their world, everyone has one single magic ability, but someone might be tampering with theirs and using it the wrong way. The Forgotten Memories of Vera Glass is a great read for sci-fi and fantasy-loving teens.

Stephanie Elliot is the author of the young adult novel, Sad Perfect, which was inspired by her daughter’s journey with ARFID, Avoidant/Restrictive Food Intake Disorder. She writes about parenting, mental health issues, relationships, and of course, books. An editor and advocate for authors, she lives in Scottsdale, Arizona with her family. For more info, visit

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