Better than underwear: book gift suggestions for teens

"On the First Day of Shopping, Old Santa said to me..."


Want to give your favorite teens and tweens a gift more fun than underwear?  Here are some suggestions:


Mighty Jack (graphic novel) by Ben Hatke

Mighty Jack

I thought that nothing would ever supplant my fangirl love of Hatke's Zita the Space Girl, but Mighty Jack may have done it:  fabulous fairy tale spun on its head, terrific artwork AND A DRAGON.

Recommended for fans of graphic novels, fairy tales, and really great stories with kick-butt kids as main characters. KCLS put this book on the Teen Fiction shelves, but all you grown-up types will be sad if you miss it.


I Am Princess X  (text and graphic novel, interspersed) by Cherie Priest

I Am Princess X

Princess X, with blue hair, red Chuck Taylors, a pink poofy dress and a katana suddenly shows up in graffiti all over Seattle.  Is it possible that the creator of Princess X isn't really dead?

Action, suspense, adventure, friendship, mystery, and a local setting.



Steelheart  by Brian Sanderson (text or audiobook)


Some Epics can stop bullets.  Some control the weather.  Some can electrically charge entire cities with a touch.  But they are all bad guys.

Superhero battles and action sequences, plus a touch of doomed romance. The only thing better than the book is the audiobook read by MacLeod Andrews.



The Girl From Everywhere (text, with maps, or audiobook)  by Heidi Hellig  

The Girl From Everywhere

Nix was born in Honolulu around 1868 but she has spent her life on board her father's pirate ship Temptation, sailing across the world, across time, and across legends.  As long as they have a map, they can sail to any place or time, real or imagined.

But the captain only wants one thing:  and that one thing might end Nix, forever.  Adventure, mythology, history, and PIRATES.


Learning to Swear in America by Katie Kennedy

Learning to Swear in America

There's an asteroid coming, and it's a big one.  That's why NASA has borrowed Russian teen physics prodigy Yuri Strelnikov: in the hope that Yuri can save California with math.

Alternating serious with laugh-out-loud funny situations (the kind where it would be nice to know some cuss words, but Yuri doesn't!) the book careens towards a collision with Asteroid BR1019.  Or...not.


Carry On: the rise and fall of Simon Snow  by Rainbow Rowell

Carry on

Fast-paced spellbinding adventure with a boy magician and his roommate, who might be a vampire,  against a terrible force that will destroy the magical world.

Uncanny adventures of a flawed hero with flawed friends--and not a single character named "Harry" in the entire book!