Book Recommendations for 16-Year-Olds

A good book can teach teenagers so many great things, whether it is a classic or a book that delves into the modern issues of teenage life or useful guidance on handling what the next few years will bring.


16 is an age where life can change quite drastically, children may be embarking on a more independent journey. So, this is the perfect time for reading some well-selected books for this age bracket, here are a few suggestions…:



The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon

This novel follows the story of a boy called Christopher Boone who has autism and gives the reader great insight into the differences between people.


The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros

This storyline is based around a Latina girl growing up in Chicago, facing the challenges of the stereotyping of immigrants and other coming-of-age situations.


The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

A New York Times best-seller, this book centres around the love story of two teenage cancer sufferers and fulfilling a bucket-list trip to Amsterdam. While it is an emotional read, there is also a lot of humour throughout the novel.


Becoming by Michelle Obama

A warm and honest memoir of the First Lady outlining her childhood in Chicago through to her time in the White House, advocating for women and girls around the world.


Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

Of all the great classics, Great Expectations is perhaps the most relevant to this age group, as it details the journey of Pip from childhood, through his education and into adult life.


Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Another great classic suitable for teenagers is Pride and Prejudice, a romance novel set in 1812 in Derbyshire, with the main character Elizabeth Bennet navigating the dilemma of marrying for love or marrying for money.


The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch

An international best seller, Professor Randy Pausch shares his insights into achieving childhood dreams in this book that he wrote before passing away from terminal cancer.


Black Flamingo by Dean Atta

Written in verse, this is the story of Michael, coming to terms with his identity as a mixed-race gay teenager. Bold and powerful, with a strong message of embracing your uniqueness and not being afraid to show who you really are to the world.


A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson

This book brings some different angles to science, history and geography in a thought-provoking and fun summary that can help teenagers to develop a stronger interest in these areas.


The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

This is an American high school-based novel focusing on a group of friends, covering typical troubles that appear in friendships and the feelings of being misunderstood.


Loveless by Alice Oseman

Georgia is a love-obsessed teenager who starts to realise that love seems so much easier for other people to manage, than for herself. Winner of the YA Book Prize 2021, a story of a young woman finding her way through love and friendship.


These are some great books to read at 16 to help to understand more about the world and relate to different types of people in life.


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