Hello everyone! Welcome back to another blog post! Today I’m going to be talking about my top ten books in Young Adult Fiction. Have you ever been overwhelmed by the massive YA section in your local bookstore? Well, the next time you’re at the bookstore check out some of my favourite reads!
Number 10: Looking for Alaska by John Green
I don’t think I could make a top ten YA list without including the wonderful John Green. Looking for Alaska follows the story of Miles Halter, a 17 teen year old that is fond of memorizing people’s last words. For his junior year Miles is sent to a boarding school where his roommate Colonel Martin gives him the name “Pudge.”
While at the boarding school Miles meets Alaska Young, a charming, but unstable girl. As the novel progresses, the two begin to grow closer and Miles starts to fall in love with Alaska. Alaska is determined to keep their relationship platonic and as the events in the novel unfold, Miles learns more of Alaska’s tragic past. The novel ends brilliantly in my opinion, as it is open for interpretation by the readers. I won’t give the ending away but the novel is witty in the John Green way and is quite an entertaining read.
Number 9: The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel by Michael Scott
The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel is a book series that is one of a kind and represents a writer who is made of pure talent. This series combines history and fantasy to tell an amazing story that I recommend to all lovers of YA fiction.
The story follows two fifteen-year-old twins Sophie and Josh Newman. The story begins with Sophie working at a coffee shop and Josh working at a bookstore. Things quickly turn sour when the antagonist John Dee attacks the bookstores owner Nicholas Flamel with his magic. John Dee gets away with a powerful book called the Codex but not before Josh rips out two pages. Soon after Nicholas Flamel reveals to the twins that he is immortal and a French alchemist. He explains to the twins that they are part of a powerful prophecy in the Codex, and the fate of the known world depends on awakening their magical abilities. The novel follows the twin’s adventures as they race to catch John Dee and retrieve the Codex. This series is rather complex and in my opinion, a masterpiece.
Number 8: Shadow Falls by C.C. Hunter
The Shadow Falls series by C.C. Hunter is a classic teen fantasy novel with a great female lead. The series is perfectly paced, and a great page-turner. It’s also extremely amusing at times, and features great supporting characters.
The series follows sixteen-year-old Kylie Galen who is sent to a camp called Shadow Falls. While she is there, she learns the camp is a place for teen supernaturals including vampire’s werewolves and much more. Throughout the series Kylie struggles to learn her supernatural identity and endures visits from numerous spirits. Kylie’s friends and lovers help make the story a great read for any YA fan.
Number 7: Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
In my opinion, Perks of Being a Wallflower is a classic coming of age novel. I think this book should be enforced in all schools for kids coming into high school. It covers all teen struggles such as heartbreak, identity, self-esteem, and much more. This novel is brutally honest and is told through a series of letters by the main character.
The novel follows the loveable Charlie and his journey through his first year of high school. Charlie meets many friends like Patrick and Sam and goes through many common high school experiences. As Charlie learns more about himself during his first year he begins to uncover things about his traumatic past. The book is very relatable to teens, and is well written and well paced. It has always interested me, as the novel is told in a series of letters, which Charlie sends to a mysterious recipient. Who is the recipient? I still don’t know.
Number 6: The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
I guess I can thank my grade 11 English teacher for this one. She introduced me to this book and from the moment I started I could barely put the book down. To say it as humbly as possible, this novel is absolutely brilliant.
It follows the journey of a wealthy Afghan named Amir and his servant Hassan. The novel takes place in Kabul, then later in America. The story follows the life of Amir and his father Baba as they escape to America. As Amir begins his new life in America he begins to unravel things about his past that changes everything he’s ever known. This book is seriously so heartbreaking and teaches us about human nature. The book deserves all of the awards it’s received over the years and much more. An absolute must read.
Number 5: Soul Screamers by Rachel Vincent
Soul Screamers is a series that is very unique and incomparable to anything I’ve read. I guess the dynamics of this story makes the series so very good. The series follows Kaylee Cavanaugh and her self-discovery that she is actually a banshee – able to sense when someone is about to die. As Kaylee uses her newfound power to save people she allows her soul to be left vulnerable to things in the Netherworld.
This novel is very exciting and suspenseful at times. I find it so fascinating partly because of the two love interests, Nash and Todd. I can’t give too much away but if your looking for a unique YA read, look no further.
Number 4: Shatter Me Tahereh Mafi
The Shatter Me series is another unique one. I enjoyed this series mostly due to the interesting character development. This series had a wonderful antagonist and by the end of it, a rather terrifying female lead.
The series follows the story of seventeen-year-old Juliette Ferrars, a girl with a paralyzing lethal touch. In the beginning Juliette seems half insane, terrified of herself and her abilities. She quickly meets Adam Kent and together the two of them escape from the asylum they are trapped in. Juliette quickly learns more of her own power and begins using it for good. The antagonist in this series, Aaron Warner is extremely fascinating- an attribute which makes this series so amazing.
Number 3: Legend Marie Lu
The Legend series by Marie Lu is a MUST READ for YA lovers. This series had amazing dynamics and strong, flawed characters. This series takes place in a dystopian society and follows the story of fifteen-year-old Day, a wanted criminal who is extremely intelligent. The series explores the relationship between a wanted criminal Day, and a prodigy named June.
This series gets very intense, very fast. Readers quickly learn June is sent to capture Day and bring him in. I think you can imagine the events that follow. Heartbreak, deceit, and betrayal, all work together to make this series one of my favourites of all time. I can’t really say much more, other than the fact that you must read it.
Number 2: The Book Thief Markus Zusak
Markus Zusak is one of the most talented writers I have ever come across. The Book Thief is a timeless read that deserves great literary praise. This book follows the story of Lisel, a young girl who lives in Nazi Germany during World War 2. The story follows the events of her daily life, and her love for reading. The Book Thief also features loveable characters such as Max, Rudy, Hans and Rosa.
This book has a beautiful but rather tear jerking ending. The book is narrated by death, which has always fascinated me. Zusak brings a human, almost sympathetic quality to death, as death narrates the horrors and the beauty of life. This book is one of two to ever make me cry (the other one being number one down below). It teaches readers so much about life and death and will always be one of my most beloved books. Also dear God, do not watch the movie without reading the book first.
Number 1: The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare
The number one spot on this list goes to the talented Cassandra Clare. This series will always hold an irreplaceable spot in my heart. This story is not only my favourite YA series, but my favourite series of all time. Yep, when the ALL TIME comes out, you better know to buckle up for the ride.
The series follows the story of Tessa Gray, a young women who comes to eighteenth century London from America. Tessa quickly learns of her own magical ability as a warlock and moves to the London Institute to train. She meets the charming William Herondale and the loveable James Carstairs, and many other great characters. The book is also a great blend of old science and magic. The setting of the series made me fall head over heels in love with London.
The book is extremely witty and so funny- Clare really uses eighteenth century propriety to amuse readers. The series follows the adventures of these three main characters and their journey to defeat the antagonists. Don’t even get me started on the ending. The ending is spread out across centuries and is one of those books where you don’t want to leave the story. I remember reading the last book and sitting there in absolute awe when I finished it. I also remember crying like I lost a bunch of loved ones, which I did if you ask me. I felt literal heartache from the ending and I am in love with all of the characters (especially Jem Carstairs). I was so obsessed with the story that for months after I would think about it, and find pretty much all-extra content for the series that is in existence. I also bought some merchandise because dammit this series is FIRE. I can only applaud Miss Cassandra Clare because this series is truly incredible. It absolutely deserves my praise and adoration. There is nothing quite like this trilogy.
Well, that’s all for this week guys! Thanks for reading and let me know in the comments if you have read or want to read any of these books. As a reminder my giveaway through Goodreads is ending on August 30th. If you live in the U.S or Canada you are eligible to win a signed softcover copy of The Crystal Chronicles! Hurry up and enter if you are interested! Can’t wait to see who wins! Follow the link below if interested:
Hello everyone! Hope you’re all doing well! I’m finally back with a new blog post! Todays post is going to be all about plot holes and how to avoid them!
So, what exactly is a plot hole? A plot hole is an inconsistency or gap that goes against the flow of your story, or contradicts something you’ve previously written. Unfortunately, plot holes can hurt your professional reputation as a writer and are very time consuming to fix.
Plot holes happen to the best of us, and taking the time to go through your story to find and fix plot holes, is essential. In my experience, plot holes usually happen for two main reasons.
Sometimes a writer has a strong vision for a scene and even if the scene makes no sense, they write it anyway. I’m sure anyone whose ever written fiction is guilty of this at some point.
The second main reason for plot holes occurs when the writer forgets something they’ve previously written and go on to write something that contradicts it, without realizing.
Plot holes often confuse readers and many times the actual writer! Here are a few tips and tricks on how to avoid plot holes in your writing!
If you are creating a fictional universe write down the rules, laws, or facts that are relevant in your own universe. For example, in The Crystal Chronicles there are five types of Elementals, but only four main elements – earth, air, fire and water. In TCC only an Orchin can control all four elements. This is fact in the TCC universe and nothing can contradict this rule.
When you write a chapter or a scene find a fresh pair of eyes to look over your work. We, as writers, often miss plot holes in our own work because we reread our own material dozens of times over. Grabbing someone who can point out any inconsistencies really helps – other people usually catch the plot holes we would never catch!
If you are writing a longer story or a novel, leave your work untouched for a few days and reread it from the beginning to the point you are working on. When we write longer pieces, we often get tangled up in the current part we are writing. Sometimes, we forget the things that we mentioned in the beginning of the story! It’s always good to refresh your memory on the things that you wrote previously! You’re more likely to catch inconsistencies in your work if you read it as a whole!
Plot holes are something we all have to keep in mind, especially those of us writing longer pieces! In the end, leaning how to fix them makes us better storytellers! Hopefully keeping these tips in mind will help you guys avoid those annoying plot holes! Happy writing everybody!
Before I wrap this post up, I am very excited to announce that I am running my first ever giveaway through Goodreads! The giveaway will be open to readers living in the United States and Canada! I will be giving away two signed softcover copies of my novel! The giveaway ends August 30th and if you’re interested please check out the link below:
Thanks for reading and until next time,
About the Author
Alessia Dickson is the author of The Crystal Chronicles series. She lives in Toronto, Ontario, where she is hard at work on her next book.