After being disgusted by a review yesterday that celebrated a YA book synopsis “teas[ing] a dark eroticism so often lacking in YA,” I decided to put together a list of books (and authors) that need more attention for their cleanliness and/or positive values. So here we are. (A handful of these are actually found in the adult section, but I’d be comfortable handing them to a teenager and I read them as a teenager myself. Others are technically middle-grade but are of a quality that they can be enjoyed by people of all ages.)
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Links on book titles lead to book reviews, and links on author names lead to those authors’ websites.
The Beaumont and Beasley series by Kyle Robert Shultz (Amazon)
The Mirror-Hunter Chronicles by R.M. Archer (Amazon)
Short Story Collection vol. 1 by R.M. Archer (Amazon)
Women of Kern: Book One by Maris McKay (the first story gets a little graphic on the romance toward the end, but that’s the only uncomfortable content I recall and the book promotes many different types of strength) (Amazon | BookShop)
Love and the Sea and Everything in Between by Brian McBride (lots of content—the book focuses on such issues as suicide and sexual abuse—but it handles those issues well and is extremely well-written) (Amazon | BookShop)
Authors to Follow
I want to say thank you to all the authors writing clean, high-quality books, or books that portray real issues through a conservative/Christian lens. Keep doing what you’re doing. Your work is important.
And to all of you readers, promote clean and positive books. Spread the word. Recommend them to people. Buy them as gifts. Support the authors. Let’s create a community of readers and authors that produces and spreads quality work that’s truly intended for teen readers, both clean options and options that aren’t afraid to tackle issues that teens are worried about but from a Christian perspective. (And I’ll talk in a few weeks about the importance of both flavors of Christian fiction.)
Do you have any recommendations that didn’t make it onto my list? I’d love to hear about them in the comments!