Teen Reading List

I am Malala, Malala Yousafzai
When the Taliban took control of the Swat Valley in Pakistan, one girl spoke out. Malala Yousafzai refused to be silenced and fought for her right to an education.

Does My Head Look Big in This?, Abdel-Fattah, Randa
Year Eleven at her exclusive prep school is further complicated for Amal when she decides to wear the hijab, the Muslim head scarf, as a badge of her faith.

Where the Streets Had a Name, Abdel-Fattah, Randa
Hayaat faces check points, curfews, and the permit system designed to keep people on the West Bank when she attempts to go to her grandmother's home in Jerusalem.

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, Alexie, Sherman
Budding cartoonist Junior leaves his troubled school on the Spokane Indian Reservation to attend an all-white town school where the only other Indian is the school mascot.

Before We Were Free, Alvarez, Julia
In the early 1960s in the Dominican Republic, Anita learns that her family is involved in the underground movement to end the bloody rule of the dictator, General Trujillo.

Mare’s War, Davis, Tanita
Octavia and Tali learn about strength, independence, and courage when they are forced to take a car trip with their grandmother, who tells about growing up Black in 1940s Alabama and serving in Europe during World War II as a member of the Women's Army Corps.

Born Confused, Desai, Hidier, Tanuja
Dimple discovers that she is not Indian enough for the Indians and not American enough for the Americans, as she sees her beautiful, manipulative best friend taking possession of both her heritage and the boy she likes.

Over a Thousand Hills I Walk With You, Jansen, Hanna
In one horrifying night, political troubles unleash a torrent of violence upon the Tutsi ethnic group, and Jeanne's family, all Tutsis, must flee their home and try desperately to reach safety.

La Linea, Jaramillo, Ann
When Miguel's time comes to leave his poor Mexican village, cross the border illegally, and join his parents in California, his younger sister's determination to join him imperils them both.

Under the Mesquite McCall, Guadalupe Garcia
As her mother battles cancer, Lupita takes on more responsibility for her house and seven younger siblings, while finding refuge in acting and writing poetry.

The Fold, Na, An
Korean American Joyce Kim jumps at the chance to have plastic surgery on her eyes, thinking it will change her life for the better.

Yummy: The Last Days of a Southside Shorty, Neri, G.
A graphic novel based on the true story of Robert "Yummy" Sandifer, an eleven-year old gang member from Chicago who shot a young girl and was then shot by his own gang members.

Keeper, Peet, Mal
World Cup hero, El Gato, describes his youth in the Brazilian rain forest and the events, experiences, and people that helped make him a great goalkeeper and renowned soccer star.

Bamboo People, Perkins, Mitali
Two Burmese boys, one a Karenni refugee and the other the son of an imprisoned Burmese doctor, meet in the jungle and must learn to trust each other in order to survive.

Keeping Corner Sheth, Kashmira
In 1940s India, Leela's happy childhood ends when her husband since age nine dies, leaving her a widow whose only hope of happiness could come from Gandhi's social and political reforms.

Chanda’s Wars, Stratton, Allan
Chandra Kabelo, a teenaged African girl, must save her younger siblings after they are kidnapped and forced to serve as child soldiers in General Mandiki's rebel army.

Orchards, Thompson, Holly
Sent to Japan for the summer after a classmate's suicide, half-Japanese, half-Jewish Kana Goldberg tries to fit in with relatives she barely knows.

American Born Chinese Yang, Gene Luen.
In a series of linked tales, Jin Wang, who meets with ridicule when his family moves from Chinatown to a white suburb, Danny, a popular jock whose social status is jeopardized when his embarrassing Chinese cousin enrolls at his school, and the Monkey King, who desperately longs to be a god, explore issues of self-image, cultural identity, transformation, and self-acceptance.

Good Enough Yoo, Paula
A Korean American teenager tries to please her parents by getting into an Ivy League college, but a new guy in school and her love of the violin tempt her in new directions.

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