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Books for Fun: Recommendations for High School Boys, Part I

M. Howe
The list author says: "I add a book to this list when I have reason to believe teenage boys (especially grade 9 and 10) enjoy reading it. I have not read every book on this list, and I do not censor the list to fit any particular definition of "appropriateness" or "literary merit". Concerned parents are advised to do their own research.

I have mostly avoided books published before 1980, with occasional exceptions for books that don't feel dated and are still very accessible from a language standpoint. Books which are required reading in my district may also be left out.

With rare exceptions, you will not find books based off of movies, television shows, or video games on this list -- not because I have a problem with such books, but because you can always find them by putting the title of the show/movie/game into a search engine with "novel" after it.

Books are not listed in any particular order.

Special thanks to all the students who contributed!"
Code Talker: A Novel About the Navajo Marines of World War Two
Code Talker: A Novel About the Navajo Marines of World War Two
"Military, Historical Fiction"
The House of the Scorpion
The House of the Scorpion
"Sci-Fi, Mystery"
The Killing Sea
The Killing Sea
"Outdoor Adventure"
Surviving Antarctica: Reality TV 2083
Surviving Antarctica: Reality TV 2083
"Outdoor Adventure, Sci-Fi"
Dragons of Autumn Twilight (Dragonlance Chronicles, Volume I)
Dragons of Autumn Twilight (Dragonlance Chronicles, Volume I)
"(Series) Epic Fantasy. These are much easier to get into than Lord of the Rings, and are the books that got me reading again after a multi-year gap in my own youth."
High Heat
High Heat
"Baseball, Coming of Age"
Peak
Peak
"Outdoor Adventure, Coming of Age"
Milkweed
Milkweed
"Historical Fiction"
Headlock
Headlock
"Wrestling, Coming of Age"
The Trap
The Trap
"(Easy) Outdoor Adventure"
Daemon Hall
Daemon Hall
"(Easy) Horror, Suspense"
Throwing Stones
Throwing Stones
"(Easy) Basketball, Coming of Age"
Unwind (Unwind Dystology)
Unwind (Unwind Dystology)
"Sci-Fi, Suspense"
City of the Beasts
City of the Beasts
"(Series) Adventure"
Ender's Game (The Ender Quintet)
Ender's Game (The Ender Quintet)
"(Series) Sci-Fi.  The direct sequels to this book are more challenging to read, but there is also an easy parallel series that starts with Ender's Shadow."
Fablehaven
Fablehaven
"(Series) Fantasy"
Under a War-Torn Sky
Under a War-Torn Sky
"Adventure, Historical Fiction"
Gregor The Overlander (Underland Chronicles, Book 1)
Gregor The Overlander (Underland Chronicles, Book 1)
"(Series) Sci-Fi"
The Thief (The Queen's Thief, Book 1)
The Thief (The Queen's Thief, Book 1)
"(Series) Fantasy, Suspense"
The Ear, the Eye, and the Arm
The Ear, the Eye, and the Arm
"Sci-Fi"
Sure Fire
Sure Fire
"(Easy) Spy, Adventure"
Tomorrow, When the War Began (The Tomorrow Series #1)
Tomorrow, When the War Began (The Tomorrow Series #1)
"(Series) Adventure"
The Last Mission (Laurel-Leaf Historical Fiction)
The Last Mission (Laurel-Leaf Historical Fiction)
"Military, Historical Fiction"
Eragon (Inheritance)
Eragon (Inheritance)
"(Series) Epic Fantasy"
Sunrise Over Fallujah
Sunrise Over Fallujah
"Military"
Ranger's Apprentice (The Ruins of Gorlan)
Ranger's Apprentice (The Ruins of Gorlan)
"(Easy, Series) Fantasy"
Watchers
Watchers
"Suspense. Said to make readers afraid of going outside for weeks."
Soldier X
Soldier X
"Military, Historical Fiction"
The Gadget
The Gadget
"Historical Fiction"
Velocity: A Novel
Velocity: A Novel
"Suspense"
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
"Coming of Age"
Flowers for Algernon
Flowers for Algernon
"Sci-Fi. An older book now, but still accessible and unforgettable."
Artemis Fowl (Artemis Fowl, Book 1)
Artemis Fowl (Artemis Fowl, Book 1)
"(Series) Sci-Fi, Mystery. The first book is also sold in illustrated, graphic novel form.  But don't bring that one to class, or you'll have everyone lusting over it instead of reading their own book!"
Life as We Knew It
Life as We Knew It
"Survival"
Monster
Monster
"Coming of Age"
Heir to the Empire (Star Wars: The Thrawn Trilogy, Vol. 1)
Heir to the Empire (Star Wars: The Thrawn Trilogy, Vol. 1)
"(Series) Sci-Fi. These sequels to the original movies were written by a real pro, which makes them better by far than most other movie tie-ins and Lucas's own prequel movies."
The White Mountains
The White Mountains
"(Series) Sci-Fi. This series is a little older than most on this list, but holds up well."
Mortal Engines (Hungry City Chronicles)
Mortal Engines (Hungry City Chronicles)
"(Series) Sci-Fi"
Nation
Nation
"Fantasy"
The Worthing Saga
The Worthing Saga
"Sci-Fi"