These two posts are far and away the most searched on my entire blog (and, given I’ve been blogging more 10+ years, that’s saying something). It tells me that people are desperately looking for books that will keep their early teenage boys interested in reading.
So my lists offer books that have been read and recommended by boys this age.
This time, I’m including books that have been read and enjoyed by my youngest son, Book Boy Jr, and you can read his reviews of several of them at bookboy.com.au by following the relevant links.
Section two offers a wide range of suggestions from the Your Kid’s Next Read Facebook community members who have readers this age. I asked them to nominate the best book that their 13- or 14-year-old boy had read recently, and have also included a few that my older son Book Boy (now 16) enjoyed when he was 14.
The last section offers recommendations of very new releases from Pauline at Riverbend Books. Booksellers see everything and have a good idea of what will appeal to young readers.
Click each book title to find out more about the book, or to buy it from Booktopia* or Riverbend Books.
Of course, boys this age are all very different. Book Boy Jr swings from re-reading Treehouse and Wimpy Kid novels for comfort, to throwing himself into deeper and more interesting reads. Some boys this age have already skipped over YA novels and developed an abiding love for Stephen King (Book Boy was one of these). Some are immersed in graphic novels, others adore non-fiction.
But this list, and the other two linked above, offers a great starting point. Think about your reader and what he is interested in and follow those interests. Don’t worry about what he should be reading, and look at what he likes to read.
The reading is the thing.
Lastly, don’t overlook this list: 20 tried-and-test books for 13/14-year-old girls.
You might find just the right book for your 13/14-year-old boy there.
As Book Boy (then 14) wrote in his piece for Raising Readers: How to nurture a child’s love of books by Megan Daley, ‘I also read books that are ‘for girls’ or aimed at girls (or books with girl protagonists) because a good book is a good book, no matter who the target audience is.’
Offer them everything because you never, ever know what will hit the mark.
Books recommended by Book Boy Jr (13)
Rebound by Kwame Alexander (Prequel to The Crossover)
Book recommendations from the Your Kid’s Next Read community
CHERUB (series) by Robert Muchamore (*nb: series content escalates)
The Wrong Train by Jeremy deQuidt (*nb: horror themes)
The Enemy by Charlie Higson (nb: themes might feel too current for some readers)
Book recommendations from Pauline at Riverbend Books, Brisbane
Riverbend Books offers a Standing Orders service. Subscribe and they’ll send a pack of books every quarter. There are lots of different packs for different age groups, and each pack is carefully selected – and reasons given as to why each book is chosen. Find out more here.
*This post contains some affiliate links. See my contact page for details. Riverbend Books links are not affiliate links.