Advent Blog – 8th December – Guest Blog by Joseph Logan

Joe’s top 10 books for young adults and teenagers


Hello! I’m author Dave Logan’s son Joe. I’m 14 and I like reading (a bit of a given sighting my parentage) however I have noticed that this trend of enjoying small symbols scrawled on crushed trees doesn’t extend to other kids my age. So if you have teenage irritations or are one your self here is some inspiration to let you be called a nerd too. Yay!
(Please note that I’ll mainly be staying away from your standard “Alex Riders” and your “Hunger Games”, etc., because they are both obvious and boring.)

Lost Christmas book cover

10: Lost Christmas
by David Logan

I would of course put this one higher but that would look slightly biased wouldn’t it. You’ve probably read it (at least I hope you have). But for the record it’s a heart warming (yet also soul crushing) tale of a boy and his dog that’s sure to make a great read over christmas.


9: The red tree
by Shaun TanThe Red Tree book cover

I know it’s a kids book but just for the art I’m putting it on here. I love Shaun Tan so much. This book is haunting and sincere and I love it so. In addition I remember vividly being terrified by some of the creepier art in here so something for the older kid as well.


8: The Great Gatsby
by F Scott FitzgeraldThe Great Gatsby book cover

Yes, I know. I’m posh. But ever since I read this book in english last year I’ve loved it’s convoluted yet inspiring story rife with metaphor upon metaphor. While it may look daunting with it’s billboards and green lights once you get into it; you really get into it. Fun fact: the poem at the start of Gatsby that functions as a prologue isn’t a real poem! The poet that supposedly composed it ,Thomas Parke D’Invidliers, was merely a pen name of Fitzgerald. I think this plays beautifully into the theme of deceit and lies that’s prevalent in the novel.


7: Half BadHalf Bad book cover
by Sally Green

More of a traditional YA novel this one. Half bad tells the tale of Nathan Byrn a “black witch” who has the extraordinary ability to heal almost instantly. Black witches are hated after a war between them and white witches. It’s unique use of a second person narrative ,referring to the character as “you”, makes the story feel far more personal than most. It’s remarkably emotional and extremely gruelling (for the main character any way).

6: Good Omens
by Terry PratchettGood Omens book cover
and Neil Gaiman

Two of the best authors of all time come together for one great work of fiction. I could have put any number of books from each of these authors on here but I chose one that sums up the best of both parties. This book is hilarious: from the 4 other riders of the apocalypse to the completely hapless Adam, who happens to be the antichrist, it will make you laugh out loud. Also R.I.P Terry pratchet. side note. I just opened my copy and I had put it upside down in the dust jacket. No idea how long it’s been like that but I may well have looked like a mental reading it. oops


5: While The Others SleepWhile the others sleep book cover
by Tom Becket

Tick Tock indeed! Yes; the inevitable horror entry on the list. And i do say it’s a great example of how do a horror novel without resorting to extreme gore (looking at you “Gone” series). this one tells the story of Alfie Mandeville whose Farther sends him to Scarbrook sanatorium to recover from insomnia. This book mainly uses atmosphere to scare the living day lights out of you instead of just horrifying monsters and such. it does a great job of making you too scared to sleep yet also too scared to stay awake. It’s great.


4: Star Wars Dark EmpireStar Wars Dark Empire book cover
by Tom Veitch

Thought I’d put a graphic novel on here and Dark Empire is my first and favourite. It’s much darker than any of the movies telling the story of Luke as he turns to the dark side to fight the emperor who’s been reincarnated in a cloned body.
it’s action is great and the writing is even better making it feel like a true successor to the original trilogy. Not that it’s cannon anymore; Thanks a bunch J.J Abrams. Also I really like Star Wars.


3: Skulduggery PleasantSkulduggary Pleasant book cover
by Derek Landy

I know I said I wouldn’t put any too obvious entries on here but Skulduggery is just that good. This saga of a skeleton detective and his trainee Valkyrie is great on action, story, lore, character and, well, pretty much every thing else. The magic is (in my opinion) more fascinating than Harry Potter with it’s different disciplines which you can have hours of fun with by discussing which you would use with friends. In addition the idea of having an inhuman protagonist brings a intriguing level of thinking to the whole thing. Also does any body else think Hugh Laurie would make a great Skulduggery? No? Just me? Ok.

2: SmartSmart book cover
by Kim Slater

Kim Slater’s debut novel is incredible. It may look just like “The Curious Incident Of The dog In The Night Time”. It’s not. Smart does use similar theme to the afore mentioned curious incident but the slight change in perspective puts in an entire new layer of intrigue . Also, if you thought the curious incident was dark that’s nothing compared to smart: it focuses on themes of child abuse, family disputes, homelessness and drug dealing so yeah. Real happy.


1: Paper TownsPaper Towns book cover
by John Green

I love John Green. Some would say i’m a little obsessed with his work. It seems that with every book of his I read i love
it more and more. I started with “The Fault In Our Stars” (arguably his most famous) moved onto “looking for Alaska” and finally this. It’s a moving tale of youth, love and friendship. and beer swords: don’t forget them (you’ll get that if you read it). Paper towns also has a great message about imagining people more deeply than what they show on their surface. In addition it’s not totally shoved down your throat, it’s much more subtle than that. If you haven’t already, read this book.

About David

Screenwriter and Novelist.

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