“Mom Approved” Fiction (Teen)

Bauer, Joan.  Almost Home.  Y FIC Bauer
Sixth-grader Sugar and her mother lose their beloved house and experience the harsh world of homelessness

Bauer, Joan. Rules of the Road.  Y FIC Bauer
Sixteen-year-old Jenna gets a job driving the elderly owner of a chain of successful shoe stores from Chicago to Texas to confront the son who is trying to force her to retire. Along the way Jenna hones her talents as a saleswoman and finds the strength to face her alcoholic father.

Bunce, Elizabeth C.  A Curse Dark as Gold.  Y FIC Bunce
Upon the death of her father, seventeen-year-old Charlotte struggles to keep the family’s woolen mill running in the face of an overwhelming mortgage and what the local villagers believe is a curse, but when a man capable of spinning straw into gold appears on the scene she must decide if his help is worth the price.

Choldenko, Gennifer.  Al Capone Does My Shirts.  Y FIC Choldenko  (SERIES)
A twelve-year-old boy named Moose moves to Alcatraz Island in 1935 when guards’ families were housed there, and has to contend with his extraordinary new environment in addition to life with his autistic sister. Al Capone Shines My Shoes (2009) & Al Capone Does My Homework (2013).

Cochrane, Mick.  The Girl who Threw Butterflies.  Y FIC Cochrane
Eighth-grader Molly’s ability to throw a knuckleball earns her a spot on the baseball team, which not only helps her feel connected to her recently deceased father, who loved baseball, it helps in other aspects of her life, as well.

Cooper, Susan.  Dark is Rising.  J PB C
On his eleventh birthday Will Stanton discovers that he is the last of the Old Ones, destined to seek the six magical Signs that will enable the Old Ones to triumph over the evil forces of the Dark.

Dahlquist, Gordon.  The Different Girl.  Y FIC Dahlquist
Veronika. Caroline. Isobel. Eleanor. One blond, one brunette, one redhead, one with hair black as tar. Four otherwise identical girls who spend their days in sync, tasked to learn. But when May, a very different kind of girl–the lone survivor of a recent shipwreck–suddenly and mysteriously arrives on the island, an unsettling mirror is about to be held up to the life the girls have never before questioned

Ferris, Jean.  Once Upon a Marigold.  YPB Ferris
A young man with a mysterious past and a penchant for inventing things leaves the troll who raised him, meets an unhappy princess he has loved from afar, and discovers a plot against her and her father.

Fforde, Jasper.  The Last Dragonslayer.  Y FIC Fforde  (The Chronicles of Kazam)
As magic fades from the world, Jennifer Strange is having trouble keeping her magician employment agency business afloat, until she begins having visions that foretell the death of the last dragon and the coming of Big Magic.

Fisher, Catherine.  The Dark City.  Y FIC Fisher  (Relic Master SERIES)
Sixteen-year-old Raffi, Master Galen, and a mysterious traveler, Carys, enter the ruined city of Tasceron seeking a relic that may save the world, while evading the Watch, a brutal organization opposed to the Order to which Raffi and Galen belong.

Flanagan, John.  The Ruins of Gorlan.  Y FIC Flanagan (Ranger’s Apprentice SERIES)
When fifteen-year-old Will is rejected by battleschool, he becomes the reluctant apprentice to the mysterious Ranger Halt, and winds up protecting the kingdom from danger.

Fleischman, Paul.  Seedfolks.  Y FIC Fleischman // J FIC Fleischman
One by one, a number of people of varying ages and backgrounds transform a trash-filled inner-city lot into a productive and beautiful garden, and in doing so, the gardeners are themselves transformed.

Frost, Helen.  Crossing Stones.  Y FIC Frost
In their own voices, four young people, Muriel, Frank, Emma, and Ollie, tell of their experiences during the first World War, as the boys enlist and are sent overseas, Emma finishes school, and Muriel fights for peace and women’s suffrage.

Giff, Reilly Patricia.  Pictures of Hollis Woods.  Y FIC Giff
A troublesome twelve-year-old orphan, staying with an elderly artist who needs her, remembers the only other time she was happy in a foster home, with a family that truly seemed to care about her.

Haas, Jessie. Unbroken. Y Fic Haas
Following her mother’s death in the early 1900s, thirteen-year-old Harry lives on Aunt Sarah’s farm where an accident with her spirited colt leaves her a changed young woman.

Hale, Shannon.  The Book of a Thousand Days.  Y FIC Hale
Fifteen-year-old Dashti, sworn to obey her sixteen-year-old mistress, the Lady Saren, shares Saren’s years of punishment locked in a tower, then brings her safely to the lands of her true love, where both must hide who they are as they work as kitchen maids.

Hall, Teri.  The Line.  Y FIC Hall
Rachel thinks that she and her mother are safe working for Ms. Moore at her estate close to The Line, an invisible border of the Unified States, but then Rachel finds a mysterious recorded message that can only have come from the other side. The voice is asking for help. Who sent the message? Why is her mother so protective? And to what lengths is Rachel willing to go in order to do what she thinks is right?

Hesse, Karen.  The Music of Dolphins.  Y PB H
After rescuing an adolescent girl from the sea, researchers learn she has been raised by dolphins and attempt to rehabilitate her to the human world.

Hesse, Karen.  Out of the Dust.  Y FIC Hesse // Y PB H
In a series of poems, fifteen-year-old Billie Jo relates the hardships of living on her family’s wheat farm in Oklahoma during the dust bowl years of the Depression.

Holczer, Tracy.  The Secret Hum of a Daisy.  Y FIC Holczer
After 12-year-old Grace’s mother’s sudden death, Grace is forced to live with a grandmother she’s never met. Then she discovers clues in a mysterious treasure hunt–one that will help her find her true home.

Kindl, Patrice.  Keeping the Castle.  Y FIC Kindl
In order to support her family and maintain their ancient castle in Lesser Hoo, seventeen-year-old Althea bears the burden of finding a wealthy suitor who can remedy their financial problems.

Kirby, Matthew.  Icefall.  Y FIC Kirby
Princess Solveig and her siblings are trapped in a hidden fortress tucked between towering mountains and a frozen fjord, along with her best friend and an army of restless soldiers, all awaiting news of the king’s victory in battle, but as they wait for winter’s end and the all-encompassing ice to break, acts of treachery make it clear that a traitor lurks in their midst.

Lane, Andy.  Death Cloud.  Y FIC Lane (Young Sherlock Holmes SERIES)
In 1868, with his army officer father suddenly posted to India, and his mother mysteriously “unwell,” fourteen-year-old Sherlock Holmes is sent to stay with his eccentric uncle and aunt in their vast house in Hampshire, where he uncovers his first murder and a diabolical villain.

Lawrence, Ian.  The Wreckers.  Y Fic Lawrence
Shipwrecked after a vicious storm, fourteen-year-old John Spencer attempts to save his father and himself while also dealing with an evil secret about the English coastal town where they are stranded.

Levine, Gail Carson.  Fairest.  Y FIC Levine
In a land where beauty and singing are valued above all else, Aza eventually comes to reconcile her unconventional appearance and her magical voice, and learns to accept herself for who she truly is.

Lord, Cynthia.  Rules.  Y FIC Lord // J FIC Lord
Frustrated at life with an autistic brother, twelve-year-old Catherine longs for a normal existence but her world is further complicated by a friendship with an young paraplegic.

Magorian, Michelle.  Good Night, Mr. Tom.  Y PB M
A battered child learns to embrace life when he is adopted by an old man in the English countryside during the Second World War.

Marillier, Juliet.  Wildwood Dancing.  Y FIC Marillier
Five sisters who live with their merchant father in Transylvania use a hidden portal in their home to cross over into a magical world, the Wildwood.

Mebus, Scott.  Gods of Manhattan.  Y FIC Mebus
Thirteen-year-old Rory discovers a spirit world that thrives alongside his contemporary New York City, filled with fantastical creatures and people from the city’s colorful past who have become gods and goddesses and who have chosen Rory to perform a dangerous mission. SEQUELSSpirits in the Park (2009), The Sorcerer’s Secret (2010)

Morris, Gerald. The Squire’s Tale.  Y FIC Morris
In medieval England, fourteen-year-old Terence finds his tranquil existence suddenly changed when he becomes the squire of the young Gawain of Orkney and accompanies him on a long quest, proving Gawain’s worth as a knight and revealing an important secret about his own true identity.

Myers, Walter Dean & Workman, Ross.  Kick.  Y FIC Myers
Told in their separate voices, thirteen-year-old soccer star Kevin and police sergeant Brown, who knew his father, try to keep Kevin out of juvenile hall after he is arrested on very serious charges

Nix, Garth.  Mister Monday.  Y FIC Nix / YPB Nix
Arthur Penhaligon is supposed to die at a young age, but is saved by a key that is shaped like the minute hand of a clock. The key causes bizarre creatures to come from another realm, bringing with them a plague. A man named Mister Monday will stop at nothing to get the key back. Arthur goes to a mysterious house that only he can see, so that he can learn the truth about himself and the key.

Nixon, Joan Lowery. Search for the Shadowman. YPB N  (SUMMER READING)
While working on a genealogy project for his seventh grade history class, Andy Bonner becomes determined to solve the
mystery surrounding a distant relative who was accused of stealing the family fortune.

Park, Linda Sue. A Single Shard.  Y FIC Park  (SUMMER READING)
Tree-ear, a thirteen-year-old orphan in medieval Korea, lives under a bridge in a potters’ village, and longs to learn how to throw the delicate celadon ceramics himself.

Paulsen, Gary.  Hatchet.  Y FIC Paulsen/ Y PB P
After a plane crash, thirteen-year-old Brian spends fifty-four days in the wilderness, learning to survive with only the aid of a hatchet given him by his mother, and learning also to survive his parents’ divorce.

Rallison, Janette.  My Fair Godmother.  Y FIC Rallison
High school sophomore Savannah wants to find the perfect prom date after her boyfriend breaks up with her to date her older sister, but when a godmother who is only fair becomes involved, Savannah finds herself in trouble in the Middle Ages, along with a boy who would like to be her charming prince.

Reinhardt, Dana.  The Summer I Learned to Fly.  Y FIC Reinhardt
Thirteen-year-old Drew starts the summer of 1986 helping in her mother’s cheese shop and dreaming about co-worker Nick, but when her widowed mother begins dating, Drew’s father’s book of lists, her pet rat, and Emmett, a boy on a quest, help her cope.

Riordan, Rick.  The Lightning Thief.  Y FIC Riordan (Percy Jackson and the Olympians SERIES)
Twelve-year-old Percy Jackson learns he is a demigod, the son of a mortal woman and Poseidon, god of the sea. His mother sends him to a summer camp for demigods where he and his new friends set out on a quest to prevent a war between the gods. SEQUELSThe Sea of Monsters (2006), The Titan’s Curse (2007), The Battle of the Labyrinth(2008), The Last Olympian (2009).

Rutkoski, Marie.  The Cabinet of Wonders.  J FIC Rutkoski
Twelve-year-old Petra, accompanied by her magical tin spider, goes to Prague hoping to retrieve the enchanted eyes the Prince of Bohemia took from her father, and is aided in her quest by a Roma boy and his sister.

Sachar, Lois.  The Cardturner.  Y FIC Sachar
When his wealthy uncle, a champion bridge player who has lost his vision, asks seventeen-year-old Alton to be a cardturner for him, Alton has no idea how much he will ultimately learn from his eccentric relative.

Schmidt, Gary.  The Wednesday Wars.  Y FIC Schmidt (SUMMER READING)
During the 1967 school year, on Wednesday afternoons when all his classmates go to either Catechism or Hebrew school, seventh-grader Holling Hoodhood stays in Mrs. Baker’s classroom where they read the plays of William Shakespeare and Holling learns much of value about the world he lives in.

Schur, Maxine. The Circlemaker.  Y FIC Schur  // Y PB S
In mid-nineteenth century Russia, Mendel Cholinsky, a twelve-year-old Jewish boy tries to escape to America to avoid being taken into the Czar’s army for twenty-five years of military service.

Selfors, Suzanne.  Coffeehouse Angel.  Y FIC Selfors
Sixteen-year-old Katrina’s kindness to a man she finds sleeping behind her grandmother’s coffeehouse leads to a strange reward as Malcolm, who is actually a teenage guardian angel, insists on rewarding her by granting her deepest wish.

Skye, Obert.  Leven Thumps and the Whispered Secret.  J FIC Skye
While Leven, Winter, and sidekicks Geth and Clover battle fantastical creatures in Foo, contrary forces in Reality plan to reconstruct the destroyed gateway between the mythical Foo and their own land.

Sorrells, Walter.  Erratum.  J FIC Sorrells
When Jessica finds–and then loses–an unfinished book about her life, she learns that if she cannot keep it from falling into the wrong hands, the balance of the universe is in peril.

Spinelli, Jerry,  Loser.  Y FIC Spinelli
Even though his classmates from first grade on have considered him strange and a loser, Donald Zinkoff’s optimism and exuberance and the support of his loving family do not allow him to feel that way about himself.

Spinelli, Jerry.  Stargirl.  Y FIC Spinelli
In this story about the perils of popularity, the courage of nonconformity, and the thrill of first love, an eccentric student named Stargirl changes Mica High School forever.

Stanley, Diane.  The Silver Bowl.  Y FIC Stanley
From the age of seven when she became scullery maid in a castle, Molly has seen visions of the future which, years later, lead her and friend Tobias on an adventure to keep Alaric, the heir to the throne, safe from a curse.

Stevenson, Robert Louis.  Treasure Island.  YPB Stevenson
While going through the possessions of a deceased guest who owed them money, Jim Hawkins and his innkeeper mother find a treasure map that may lead them to a pirate’s fortune.

Taylor, Theodore.  The Cay.  Y PB T
When the freighter on which they are traveling is torpedoed by a German submarine during World War II, an adolescent white boy, blinded by a blow on the head, and an old black man are stranded on a tiny Caribbean island where the boy acquires a new kind of vision, courage, and love from his old companion.

Taylor, Theodore.  The Weirdo. Y FIC Taylor
Seventeen-year-old Chip Clewt fights to save the black bears in the Powhaten National Wildlife Refuge.

Townley, Rod.  The Great Good Thing.  Y FIC Townley
Twelve-year-old Princess Sylvie’s storybook kingdom really is a storybook, where nothing ever changes, even the character’s mad scramble to reach their places whenever the book is opened, until Sylvie discovers she can enter new worlds with the Reader, and find new adventures.

White, Andrea.  Surviving Antarctica : Reality TV 2083.  Y FIC White
In the year 2083, five fourteen-year-olds who were deprived by chance of the opportunity to continue their educations reenact Scott’s 1910-1913 expedition to the South Pole as contestants on a reality television show, secretly aided by a Department of Entertainment employee.

White, Ruth. Belle Prater’s Boy. Y FIC White
When Woodrow’s mother suddenly disappears, he moves to his grandparents’ home in a small Virginia town where he befriends his cousin and together they find the strength to face the terrible losses and fears in their lives.

Zeitlin, Meredith.  Sophomore Year is Greek to Me.  Y FIC Zeitlin
Fifteen-year-old Zona Lowell is finally comfortable in high school when her father tells her that they’re moving to Greece for the second half of her sophomore year, and she will be forced to meet her mother’s large extended family there against her will.

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