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Harry Potter, Twilight, Hunger Games, now what??


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Initial post: Dec 1, 2011 6:37:16 PM PST
Diana D says:
Hi, I'm hoping for some suggestions. I love reading, and since Harry Potter, have been mostly reading YA books. Lately, I've been struggling to find a book or series that I can really get into.

I have tried several books that people have suggested on message boards, and I really want to like them, but I just don't for some reason. Part of the problem is that I am a fairly slow reader, and I don't have the time or patience to read hundreds of pages before I know what's going on or care about the characters.

Here are some of the books I've tried but not had any luck getting into (sorry if these are your favorites, I really Wanted to like them!)
The Outlander series, City of Bones, The Golden Compass, A Great and Terrible Beauty, Interview with the Vampire, Vampire Academy, Percy Jackson.

A few I've read recently that I really enjoyed: L.J. Smith - Forbidden Games 01 The Hunter, The Hate List, 13 Reasons Why (LOVED that book!) And some of my all-time favorites (across genres): the 3 series mentioned above, anything by Richard Bach or Og Mandino, Eat, Pray, Love and Flowers in the Attic (loved the wicked family, secrecy, mystery, cool house, triumph over tragedy...stopped after the first book - didn't like the change in writer's point of view or incest theme.)

I am looking for a book that hopefully has at least a couple of the following: suspense, mystery, interesting characters and settings (and I always enjoy a sweet love story).

I look forward to your suggestions!

Posted on Dec 1, 2011 7:15:50 PM PST
Sorry but you're not going to find anything as good as Harry Potter or the Hunger Games.

Well, maybe eventually - one day. But not today.

:D

The next best thing is Louise Rennison (Angus, Thongs and Full Frontal Snogging) but I'm not sure you're looking for humor.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2011 7:36:48 PM PST
Diverget by Veronica Roth is awesome! And also Matched and Crossed by Ally Condie. The Maze Runner series by James Dashner is good too.

Posted on Dec 1, 2011 7:52:21 PM PST
You absolutely have to check out Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor. It's the most gorgeously written (but not difficult) book, with fantastic, magical characters and a really cool setting (well, 2 of them -- Prague in the real world, and Elsewhere, which is made up). It's my favorite of the year. Heartbreaking and wondrous.

For contemporary fiction, you might also enjoy Stephanie Perkins books (Anna and the French Kiss; Lola and the Boy Next Door), and on the slightly heavier (but not depressing side) If I Stay by Gayle Forman, and The Sky Is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson.

Posted on Dec 1, 2011 8:49:52 PM PST
S. L. Parker says:
I just finished the Matthew Corbett series
Speaks the Nightbird
Queen of Bedlam
Mister Slaughter
by Robert McCammon and everything else he's written.

"Speaks the Nightbird" is not available on Kindle, but it's a fabulous opening for this great series. Book 4 of the series "The Providence Rider" is due to be released in May, 2012.

I love everything this man writes, a true American storyteller.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2011 9:31:36 PM PST
Diana D says:
I'm looking for good books, any genre. Thanks for the tip. I checked out the author, noted that she has a book called "Stop in the name of Pants" and already love her. Anyone who can make me laugh out loud is a winner. I first fell in love with Harry Potter because of the humor. The line "perfectly normal owl-free morning" had me laughing out loud, almost choking on my coffee (in public. Gotta love that :)

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2011 9:54:35 PM PST
Diana D says:
Hi Shannon, Thanks for the suggestions! I think I may hold off on Divergent until the sequels are out (I don't like getting sucked into a series that isn't written yet - the waiting is so hard!) I hadn't heard of the Maze Runner series. The reviews make it sound good!

Posted on Dec 1, 2011 10:05:29 PM PST
The Tomorrow series by John Marsden. Good YA stuff, it's not fantasy like your list up there but it's good enough to be taught in our schools here in Australia. 7 books in the series with a follow up series of another 3 books and they're not too long so your patience problem should be an issue. Good luck!

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2011 10:25:52 PM PST
Diana D says:
Hi Kristan, Thanks for the suggestions! I was trying to place the name, Laini Taylor and realized she wrote "Lips touch, three times." I only read the first of the three short stories, but Loved it!! Her writing is beautiful! I look forward to reading that, but will probably wait, as it looks like there will be sequels and I don't like waiting on the hook. haha. The Stephanie Perkins and Jandy Nelson books I hadn't heard of. They sound great!

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2011 10:26:57 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 22, 2013 3:26:58 PM PST
Diana D says:
Hi S.L., thanks for the suggestions. I haven't heard of Matthew Corbett before. I'll definitely check him out!

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2011 10:34:35 PM PST
Diana D says:
Thanks, Mitchell! I just looked at the reviews. The books sound fantastic! I'm not so much into labels or particular genres, just absorbing books. These are definitely going on my reading list. And, as far as the length of the books, Harry Potter had some that were quite long and I zipped through them, because I got lost in them. I'm just not one to take the advice "just get through the first 400 boring pages, then it starts to gets better" :)

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 1, 2011 10:40:22 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 1, 2011 10:48:43 PM PST
J. G. Smith says:
Even when I was a teen I didn't read teen books (can't stand them.) But one of the few that I did read (and actually enjoyed) was Blue is for Nightmares (Stolarz Series) by Laurie Faria Stolarz. It has suspense, mystery, likeable characters and some romance.

As for adult books, I read basically fantasy, but Moon Called (Mercy Thompson) is an AMAZING series with suspense, mystery, interesting characters and settings AND one of the sweetest love stories I've ever had the pleasure of reading. I love the Mercy Thompson series. (Moon Called is the first book.) And it's clean for an adult book. Not too much language, I don't think the violence is too bad, and it just has a few non-explicit sex scenes in the later books. (So far there's 6 books.) And a quick read! I highly recommend it to anyone.

Posted on Dec 1, 2011 10:54:14 PM PST
Kribu says:
Seconding the Tomorrow series - I flew through them one after another. Quite grim, but well written and oddly enough, for a series that was basically seven books of the same thing, it never got boring for me.

Anything else I'd want to rec seems to be series not yet complete. Divergent, once the sequel is out, definitely - but I quite understand not wanting to wait!

I didn't think there would be anything to top Harry Potter for me for a long time, but I got sucked into Skulduggery Pleasant by Derek Landy last year - if anything will, that might. It's also not completed yet, though (six books out of a nine book series in total so far). If you like humour and action with your fantasy & magic, might be worth a try though; I enjoyed the first three books but the next three made me fallen in love with it completely. Not a lot of romance to start with but there is some in the later books.

Posted on Dec 2, 2011 12:43:49 AM PST
Susan Cooper's _The Dark is Rising_ Pentalogy is fabulous: The Dark Is Rising (Boxed Set): The Dark Is Rising, Greenwitch, Over Sea, Under Stone, Silver on the Tree, The Grey King (if the characters in the first book don't appeal, you can skip to the second book and start there instead). A work of high fantasy (which has a definite series of love stories to it) is Jack Vance's Lyonesse Trilogy: The Complete Lyonesse: Suldrun's Garden, The Green Pearl, Madouc (Gollancz Black Books). Or you may enjoy Barry Hughart's Bridge of Birds: A Novel of an Ancient China That Never Was

Posted on Dec 2, 2011 7:59:21 AM PST
Dawn Kovar says:
I also am a HUGE Hunger Games & Harry Potter! (can't wait for the HG movie!! hope they don't ruin it :) Have you tried the Uglies series by Scott Westerfield??? They are really good!!! I would second the notion for The Matched series by Ally Condie, but since you don't like to wait for sequels (2 out of 3 have been published so far) i won't :) But they are amazing!!! Also when the last sequel comes out probably sometime next year, you should read the Birthmarked trilogy by Caragh M. O'Brien........... exceptional!!!! Lets see......oh yeah one more i have enjoyed is the Maximum Ride series by James Patterson!!! Little bit of romance, lots of humor and plenty of kick butt action!!!!! Probably one of my faves....and there are i think eight so far.....the final one will be published this February!!!!!! So ou won't have to wait long :) Hope this helps!!!!!!!!

Posted on Dec 2, 2011 8:59:52 AM PST
Soulcatcher says:
I'm kinda surprised you didn't care for the City of Bones series, since most of what you mentioned was very similar in nature. I would definitely second in suggesting that you try the Dark is Rising Sequence by Susan Cooper, it's a fantastic read with a lot of Old Magic type stuff.The Dark Is Rising: The Complete Sequence (Dark Is Rising Sequence)

You might also like the Chronicles of Prydain The Chronicles of Prydain Boxed Set. It is an older series but is still a much better read than most of the series being produced today. Another series that I just finished and really enjoyed was Tithe Tithe: A Modern Faerie Tale, it's a much darker series that deals with the Faerie realms that coexist with a modern setting; pretty interesting IMO.

You might also like the Ranger's Apprentice series The Ruins of Gorlan (Ranger's Apprentice, Book 1). It might be a little out of your usual genre but is completely worth a deviation to check it out. Fantastic characters, engaging storyline, and excellent humor.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 2, 2011 6:40:36 PM PST
Diana D says:
Thanks, J.G. Those both sound good. I'll check them out.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 2, 2011 6:44:21 PM PST
Diana D says:
Hi Kribu, Thanks for the tips. I just checked out the first Skulduggery Pleasant book and, just reading the first few pages, it looks like a lot of fun!

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 2, 2011 6:46:20 PM PST
Diana D says:
Hi William, thanks for all the suggestions. I have heard of Susan Cooper's series before and it sounds really good. I think the first book is at one of my local libraries... I'll check for it.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 2, 2011 6:53:52 PM PST
Diana D says:
Hi Dawn, I'm with you (hoping they don't ruin the HG movies. I heard they're doing 4 instead of 3. Who knew that Harry Potter would start a "last book, last movies - part 1 and 2" phenomenon? haha).

I did try the Uglies series. I read about half of the first book but lost interest. That has happened a lot for me with dystopian books for some reason. It actually took me a couple tries to get into the Hunger Games (before it grabbed me and wouldn't let go...)

The Maximum Ride series sounds like fun. I'll have to check it out.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 2, 2011 7:26:43 PM PST
Diana D says:
Hi Soulcatcher, I know... I'M really surprised that I can't get into the City of Bones series! From the reviews I've read, it sounds like it should be right up my alley! One of my problems is that I never know when to stop...I have already read over half of "City of Bones" and "A Great and Terrible Beauty" and was still reading, hoping that one would Finally click, but so far, nada. I don't want to waste any more of my time on them if I'm just never going to be a fan. I could be diving into something new that I may enjoy. But, I'm always afraid of giving up too soon...

Thanks for the suggestions. I'll check them out :)

Posted on Dec 2, 2011 8:00:50 PM PST
Hi! Hands down favorite series since HG and HP is the Chaos Walking series by Patrick Ness. All three are out. Definite heart wrenching rollercoaster ride but unbelievable premise. The Books are: The Knife of Never Letting Go, The Ask is the Answer, and Monsters of Men.

Also Kristen Cashore's books are amazing. Graceling and Fire. Both stand alone stories, though one character is mentioned in Fire, it's not a dealbreaker in anyway. She has a loooong awaited companion book coming out Bitterblue, this May, but it's not being billed as a sequel.

Anything by Melina Marchetta. The best, Jellicoe Road. Lately, Finnikin of the Rock. and everything else.

And for fun and very ADULT novels, though you didn't like Vampire Academy, Richelle Mead's Georgina Kinkaid series is a hoot. You just can't read them in public places. :)

Posted on Dec 2, 2011 9:48:45 PM PST
Michaelbrent says:
Here are some you might like to try:

The Maze Runner series by James Dashner. It's already been mentioned, but I heartily second the vote.
Fablehaven series by Brandon Mull. It's a bit "young" but still has some laugh-out-loud parts.
For a change of pace to something along the sci-fi lines, you might try Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card.
Also, there's The 13th Reality series (also by James Dashner).
Another "laugh out loud"er is The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series. Not strictly YA, but HI-LARIOUS, and not so far advanced that your average YA reader can't enjoy.

Hope this helps! Keep on reading!

- Michaelbrent Collings
author of the bestselling Billy: Messenger of Powers

Posted on Dec 3, 2011 2:33:02 AM PST
[Deleted by Amazon on Feb 4, 2012 11:35:28 PM PST]

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 3, 2011 8:05:48 AM PST
I actually liked CLare's CLockwork Angel better than City of Bones. There are several similarities, but I think the story & characters are stronger in Angel.
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Discussion in:  Young Adult forum
Participants:  87
Total posts:  138
Initial post:  Dec 1, 2011
Latest post:  Mar 18, 2013

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