The clock is ticking and the days are slipping by quickly, so that means that it’s likely time to start thinking about what to buy for the people on your Christmas list. This is always a hard thing to figure out, especially for the teens and tweens on your list. Generally, I recommend gift cards or cash for the hard to shop for youth, but this time, I’m giving you some ideas for gifts for the young readers that you are shopping for.
When I was a young adult reader, I had a few favorite books that were not in the Young Adult genre and my mother had to let the local librarian know that she was okay with me reading things that weren’t in the YA section. She trusted the librarian to monitor my book selections so I never got led astray, since the selection of books that were age appropriate were sorely lacking. That is no longer the case and there are many great book choices for a young reader. Young adult has grown exponentially and there are a lot of great selections that aren’t necessarily books the young reader would pick up.
For instance, The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins tells the story of Katniss Everdeen and the world she lives in. She lives in a world where things are far from perfect. People are divided into districts. Each district has their own place in society, determining the wealth of the district. Katniss, being from District 12, lives in the poorest district where the main work for the residents is working in the coal mines. Each year, two tributes are selected to participate in the Hunger Games, a fight to the death with the last person standing winning rewards of food and grain for their district. Katniss voluntarily takes the place of the District 12 female tribute, her little sister, and the entire world changes for Katniss. Katniss learns a lot about herself, the people who run the world in the Capitol, and about people in other districts, changing the way the looks at the world… if she survives the games.
The Giver by Lois Lowry was the 1994 Newbery Medal Winner, so it’s a bit older, but still contains a lot of points that make it relevant today. This is the story of a 12 year old boy who lives in a world that seems to be perfect. There is no crime, no poverty, no lack of jobs. A seemingly Utopian world, right? That’s what everyone things, especially Jonas, until he is chosen as the next Giver for the community and he learns the truth about the world he lives in.
There are also the standard choices of the Harry Potter books or the Twilight books, both of which have been made into great movies over the years. What a lot of people don’t realize is that a lot of the great movies that the teens and tweens enjoy are based off of great books that would make a great gift.
Book: Bridge to Terabithia; written by Katherine Paterson.
Movie: Bridge to Terabithia
Book: The Outsiders; written by S. E. Hinton.
Movie: The Outsiders
Book: Confessions of a Shopaholic; written by Sophie Kinsella.
Movie: Confessions of a Shopaholic
Book: Escape to Witch Mountain; written by Alexander Key.
Movie: Race to Witch Mountain
Book: Chronicles of Narnia; written by C S Lewis.
Movie: Prince Caspian: The Return to Narnia
Movie: Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
Book: The Spiderwick Chronicles; written by Tony DiTerlizzi
Movie The Spiderwick Chronicles