All About Adolescent Literacy

All about adolescent literacy. Resources for parents and educators of kids in grades 4-12.
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Audiobooks

Audiobooks can help re-create the pleasure of being read to as a child. Lots of great titles are available from Audible.com, in partnership with Amazon, for immediate download, so you can start listening right away! Our list features some of the best recordings of the last five years.

To Kill a Mockingbird

To Kill a Mockingbird

Age Level: 14-16

This perennial reading list title — the story of widowed lawyer Atticus Finch, his children Jem and Scout, the mysterious Boo Radley, and a trial based on false accusations and racism — come alive in the audiobook read by Oscar-winning actress Sissy Spacek.

A Yellow Raft in Blue Water

A Yellow Raft in Blue Water

Age Level: 14-16

Teenage Rayona is abandoned by her parents and goes to live with her grandmother, called Aunt Ida, on the reservation where her Mother was raised. Three generations of Native American women are beautifully portrayed in the audiobook by Dorris and acclaimed narrator Rosenblat.

The Wee Free Men

The Wee Free Men

Age Level: 12-14

Pratchett has written many Discworld books loved by teens and adults alike, but this was his first novel for a younger teen audience. Nine-year-old Tiffany is destined to be a witch, but she's got a lot of learning to do first. Along with the drunken, brawling Nac Mac Feegles, Tiffany sets off to find her brother in this hilarious fantasy adventure.

The Thief Lord

The Thief Lord

Age Level: 9-12

When orphans Prosper, age 12, and Bo, age 5, run away to Venice, they find themselves in the company of a gang of teens who live in an abandoned movie theater and rob the rich to survive. A little bit of mystery, a little bit of fantasy, and a lot of the Venetian setting.

Tadpole

Tadpole

Age Level: 9-12

In 1950's Appalachia, the Collins family leads a hard existence. The youngest sister, Carolina, is adrift, when her guitar-playing cousin, Tadpole, unexpectedly arrives. Tadpole's beautiful singing and positive outlook inspire the family, but when they learn he's on the run from an abusive uncle, they worry the uncle will come and take Tadpole away.

A Northern Light

A Northern Light

Age Level: 14-16

Sixteen-year old Mattie, an aspiring writer, leaves her family's farm to work as a maid at a resort in the Adirondacks. Set in 1906, Mattie's story incorporates the racism, sexism, and class conflict prevalent at the turn of the century. A subplot involves the murder of Grace Brown; a story familiar to readers of Theodore Dreiser's An American Tragedy.

Troy

Troy

Age Level: 14-16

This retelling of the story of the Trojan War has all the action and intrigue familiar to those who know the tale, but this version is told through the eyes of teenagers. Geras does an excellent job in making this oft-assigned tale appealing.

Time Stops for No Mouse: A Hermux Tantamoq Adventure

Time Stops for No Mouse: A Hermux Tantamoq Adventure

Age Level: 9-12

Hermux Tantamoq is a simple watchmaker mouse. Linka Perflinger is a daring mouse aviatrix, with a watch that needs fixing. When Hermux agrees to do the repair, he falls for Linka and gets dragged into an adventure involving mad scientists and a garish cosmetics maven mouse.

Montmorency: Thief, Liar, Gentleman?

Montmorency: Thief, Liar, Gentleman?

Age Level: 12-14

Montmorency is a social-climbing gentleman, while his alter ego, Scarper, is a petty criminal. Scarper moves through London's sewers to commit robberies in wealthy neighborhoods, while Montmorency flaunts his wealth. The action in the sewers adds plenty of grossness to keep this Victorian tale from becoming too stuffy.

How I Live Now

How I Live Now

Age Level: 14-16

Daisy is a spoiled American teen with plans to spend the summer in England with her aunt and cousins at their farmhouse. While her aunt is away, an unnamed country invades England, and soldiers take over the farmhouse. Lacking adult guidance, Daisy must stop thinking of herself and take responsibility for her young cousins. This novel won both the Printz Award (U.S.) and the Guardian Children's Fiction Award (U.K.).

A Great and Terrible Beauty

A Great and Terrible Beauty

Age Level: 14-16

It’s 1895, and after the suicide of her mother, 16-year-old Gemma Doyle is shipped off from the life she knows in India to Spence, a proper boarding school in England. Lonely, guilt-ridden, and prone to visions of the future that have an uncomfortable habit of coming true, Gemma’s reception there is a chilly one. To make things worse, she’s been followed by a mysterious young Indian man, a man sent to watch her. But why? What is her destiny? This is Book 1 in the Gemma Doyle Trilogy.

Flipped

Flipped

Age Level: 12-14

A wonderful he-said, she-said story of how young teens go from hate to love (or dislike to like). Through the audiobook, listeners really experience the teens' dialogue.

Feed

Feed

Age Level: 14-16

In this society your brain cyberfeed provides an endless stream of information, entertainment and advertising. When Violet’s feed is disrupted, she’s cast adrift and everyone is forced to examine the power of the feed in his/her life.

Blood Red Horse: Book One of the deGranville Trilogy

Blood Red Horse: Book One of the deGranville Trilogy

Age Level: 12-14

Set in the time of the Crusades, this is a horse story, a war story, and a love story, all in one tale of historical fiction. This book is the first in a trilogy, but completely satisfying on its own.

Jazz

Jazz

Illustrated by: Christopher Myers

Age Level: 9-12

Experience the explosion of color and movement of jazz as you pulsate with its beat in a vibrant series of poems and paintings. This father-and-son team explores a variety of jazz forms in an unforgettable book.

In 2008, the first Odyssey Award for distinguished children's/young adult audiobook was presented to this read-along title. This package brings together the illustrations of the book with the featured Jazz music.