Books for Boys



Alexie, Sherman. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian. 2007.
Determined to receive a good education, budding cartoonist Junior leaves the rez to attend an all-white school in the neighboring farm town where the only other Indian is the school mascot.
Almond, David. Kit’s Wilderness. 1999.
Thirteen-year-old Kit goes to live with his grandfather in the decaying coal mining town of Stoneygate, England, and finds both the old man and the town haunted by ghosts of the past.
Anderson, M.T. Burger Wuss. 1999.
Hoping to lose his loser image, Anthony plans revenge on a bully which results in a war between two competing fast food restaurants, Burger Queen and O'Dermott's.
Anderson, M.T. Feed. 2002.
In a future where most people have computer implants in their heads to control their environment, a boy meets an unusual girl who is in serious trouble.
Banks, Russell. Rule of the Bone. 1995.
Chappie, a homeless kid rejected by his parents and in trouble with the police, takes refuge with a group of biker-thieves.
Bagadasarian, Adam. First French Kiss and Other Traumas. 2000.
The author presents humorous and touching sketches about his childhood and adolescence from ages 5 to 20.
Book, Rick. Necking with Louise. 1999.
Seven linked stories about work, sports, making out, and breaking up are set in 1965 Saskatchewan.
Brooks, Bruce. The Moves Make the Man. 1984.
A black boy and an emotionally troubled white boy in North Carolina form a precarious friendship.
Brooks, Martha. Being with Henry. 2000.
Seventeen-year-old Laker Wyatt, is kicked out of his home and fate brings him together with Henry Olsen, an 83-year-old with family troubles of his own.
Card, Orson Scott. Ender's Game. 1985.
When aliens twice attack the earth and almost destroy the human race, the government prepares for the next encounter with "art of war" training games.
Carroll, Jim. The Basketball Diaries. 1978.
This urban classic coming-of-age story is about growing up with drugs and sex and about learning to survive on the streets of New York.
Cart, Michael. My Father’s Scar. 1996.
The story alternates between 18-year-old Andy Logan’s freshman year and various times during the past, describing the key events in a homosexual boy's growth to manhood and independence.
Chbosky, Stephen. The Perks of Being a Wallflower. 1999.
This is the world of first dates, family dramas, new friends, sex, drugs, and the Rocky Horror Picture Show.
Clarke, Arthur C. Childhood’s End. 1953.
Within 50 years, the Overlords had eliminated ignorance, disease, poverty, and fear, by pulling children away from their human heritage.
Farmer, Nancy. The Ear, the Eye and the Arm. 1994.
In 2194 in Zimbabwe, General Matsika's three children are kidnapped and put to work in a plastic mine, while three mutant detectives use their special powers to search for them.
Hartinger, Brent. The Order of the Poison Oak. 2005.
Sixteen-year old Russel Middlebrook spends the summer as a counselor in a camp for burn victims. Searching for a way to connect with his cabin full of unruly ten-year-olds, he comes up with the Order of the Poison Oak, a secret society for outsiders. Sequel to Geography Club.
Hinton, S.E. The Outsiders. 1967.
Three brothers struggle to stay together after their parents' death, as they search for an identity among the conflicting values of their adolescent society in which they find themselves "outsiders."
Hobbs, Will. Downriver. 1991.
Fifteen-year-old Jessie and the other rebellious teenage members of a wilderness survival school team abandon their adult leader, hijack his boats, and try to run the dangerous whitewater at the bottom of the Grand Canyon.
Hobbs, Will. Far North. 1996.
After the destruction of their floatplane, sixteen-year-old Gabe and his Dene friend, Raymond, struggle to survive a winter in the wilderness of the Northwest Territories.
Holt, Kimberly Willis. When Zachary Beaver Came to Town. 1999.
During the summer of 1971 in a small Texas town, 13-year-old Toby and his best friend Cal meet the star of a sideshow act, 600-pound Zachary, the fattest boy in the world.
Howe, Norma. The Adventures of Blue Avenger. 1999.
On his 16th birthday, David decides to become the cartoon alter ego he invented after his father’s unexpected death, hoping to find a way to make a difference in the world.
Joyce, James. A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man. 1916.
Joyce's semi-autobiographical novel is a coming-of-age tale of Stephen Dedalus' journey to becoming an "independent" artist.
Kerouac, Jack. On the Road. 1957.
Beat Generation Sal Paradise wanders around the United States, visiting friends, getting drunk and searching for the meaning of life through sex, drugs and jazz.
Klass, David. You Don't Know Me. 2001.
Fourteen-year-old John creates alternative realities in his mind as he tries to deal with his mother's abusive boyfriend, his crush on a beautiful, but shallow classmate and other problems at school.
Lebert, Benjamin. Crazy. 2002.
A teenager at a German boarding school learns about what friends are, what girls are, and how you find your way in a crazy world by just being your crazy self.
Lowry, Lois. The Giver. 1933.
Given his lifetime assignment at the Ceremony of Twelve, Jonas becomes the receiver of memories shared by only one other in his community and discovers the terrible truth about the society in which he lives.
Lynch, Chris. Extreme Elvin. 1999.
As he enters high school, fourteen-year-old Elvin continues to deal with his weight problem as he tries to find his place among his peers.
Lynch, Chris. Slot Machine. 1995.
This darkly funny look at growing up male in America is narrated by a chubby fourteen- year-old who describes, with sarcasm, his increasingly painful efforts to find his appropriate athletic "slot."
Lypsite, Robert. One Fat Summer. 1977.
There's more to Bobby Marks than his two hundred pounds. He's about to find out just how terrifying and exhilarating, how dangerous and wonderful, one fat summer can be.
Marsdon, John. Tomorrow When the War Began. 1993.
Seven Australian teenagers return from a camping trip in the bush to discover that their country has been invaded and they must hide to stay alive.
Mazer, Harry. The Last Mission. 1979.
In 1944, a 15-year-old Jewish boy tells his family he will travel in the West, but instead enlists in the United States Air Corps and is subsequently taken prisoner by the Germans.
Nix, Garth. Shade’s Children. 1997.
In a savage post nuclear world, four young fugitives attempt to overthrow the bloodthirsty rule of the Overlords with the help of Shade, their mysterious mentor.
Paulsen, Gary. Harris and Me: A Summer Remembered. 1993.
Sent to live with relatives on their farm because of his unhappy home life, an 11-year-old city boy meets his distant cousin Harris and is given an introduction to a whole new world.
Paulsen, Gary. Hatchet. 1987.
After a plane crash, thirteen-year-old Brian spends fifty-four days in the wilderness, learning to survive initially with only the aid of a hatchet given him by his mother, and learning also to survive his parents' divorce.
Paulsen, Gary. Soldier's Heart: A Novel of the Civil War. 1998
Eager to enlist, 15-year-old Charley has a change of heart after experiencing both the physical horrors and mental anguish of Civil War combat.
Portman, Frank. King Dork. 2006.
When high school loser Tom Henderson discovers his deceased father's copy of Catcher in the Rye, he finds himself in the middle of several interlocking conspiracies and at least half a dozen mysteries involving dead people, naked people, fake people, ESP, blood, a secret code, guitars, monks, witchcraft, the Bible, girls, the Crusades, a devil head, and rock and roll.
Powell, Randy. Tribute to Another Dead Rock Star. 1999.
Fifteen-year-old Grady must face his distant step-family when he returns to speak at a concert honoring his deceased rock-star mother.
Pullman, Philip. The Golden Compass. 1996.
Accompanied by her daemon, Lyra Belacqua sets out to prevent her best friend and other kidnapped children from becoming the subject of gruesome experiments in the Far North.
Sachar, Louis. Holes. 1998.
Stanley Yelnats is sent to a hellish correctional camp in the Texas desert where he finds his first real friend, a treasure, and a new sense of himself.
Salinger, J. D. The Catcher in the Rye. 1951.
This classic coming-of-age story portrays one young man's funny and poignant experiences with life, love, and sex.
Sleator, William. Interstellar Pig. 1984.
Barney's boring seaside vacation suddenly becomes more interesting when the cottage next door is occupied by three exotic neighbors who are addicted to a game they call "Interstellar Pig."
Sleator, William. Oddballs. 1993.
The stories in this collection are based on experiences from the author's youth and peopled with an unusual assortment of family and friends.
Spinelli, Jerry. Maniac Magee: A Novel. 1990.
Humorous yet poignant tall tale about a super-athletic teenager who bridges his town's racial gap.
Thomas, Rob. Rats Saw God. 1996.
To make up the credit for a failed English class, 18-year-old Steve York produces a journal revealing how he has gone from a National Merit scholar to an underachieving stoner.
Thompson, Julian. The Grounding of Group 6. 1996.
As part of their high school orientation, a group of students hikes into the woods. What they don't immediately realize is that their parents do not plan for them to come out alive.
Tolkien, J.R.R. The Hobbit. 1966.
Bilbo Baggins, a respectable, well-to-do hobbit, lives comfortably in his hobbit-hole until the day the wandering wizard Gandalf chooses him to take part in an adventure from which he may never return.
Tolkien, J.R.R. The Fellowship of the Ring. 1965.
Through the urgings of the enigmatic wizard Gandalf, young hobbit Frodo Baggins embarks on an urgent, incredibly treacherous journey to destroy the One Ring. The first book in the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
Vizzini, Ed. It's Kind of a Funny Story. 2006.
This humorous account of a New York City teenager's battle with depression begins with the sentence "It's so hard to talk when you want to kill yourself".
Wharton, William. Birdy. 1978.
This inventive, hypnotic novel is about friendship and family, love and war, madness and beauty, and, above all, "birdness."
Wittlinger, Ellen. Hard Love. 1999.
John Galardi, falls for Marisol, the creator of his favorite zine… who happens to be a lesbian.


Daldry, Jeremy. The Teenage Guys Survival Guide. 1999.
305.235 D
This humorous guide for boys offers advice on dating, sex, body changes, and social life.
Hickam, Homer H. Rocket Boys: A Memoir. 1998.
629.1026 H
A memoir of a young boy who beat tough odds and achieved success launching rockets into outer space.  (Adapted for film with the title October Sky.)
Katz, Jon. Geeks: How Two Lost Boys Rode the Internet out of Idaho. 2000.
Two self-described social misfits use the resources of the Internet to try to construct a new future for themselves, escape the boundaries of their dead-end lives, and find a community they can belong to.
Wolff, Tobias. This Boy’s Life: A Memoir. 1989.
Award-winning fiction author Tobias Wolff recounts his own growing up in the 1950s.