Recommended reading for 10 and above
Mandy Seng from the National Library Board (NLB) shares with us what our 10 year olds up to teenagers like to read and how to get non-avid readers interested in reading.
Check out your local library for these books.
For 10 – 12 years old
General traits: Usually quite independent when it comes to choosing books to read. Parents should allow them to select their own materials. At the same time, if parents find that their kids are only reading the same series, and would like to encourage them to read widely, they can try to:
- Look for similar books of the same genre, or by the same author, themes or characters.
- Suggest stories with an interesting plot and those that build suspense.
- Select stories where the central character is unforgettable and believable. Generally, readers are able to relate well to characters facing and overcoming challenges.
- Select a book where the main character is around the same age or a couple of years older than the child. Pre-teens are usually hesitant to read about characters who are younger than them.
- Choose stories that reflect experiences that are familiar to the pre-teens. Some of the common themes that catch the attention of pre-teens are family, friendship, school, peer pressure and courage.
- Choose stories that are humorous in nature.
- Choose books with a happy ending because pre-teens still need the reassurance that life is good despite the many challenges they may face during the adolescent years.
1.When You Reach Me
Author: Rebecca Stead
Call No.: J STE
Publisher: New York, N.Y.: Wendy Lamb Books, c2009.
2. Artemis Fowl
Author: Eoin Colfer
Call No.: J COL
Publisher: Hyperion Books for Children, c2001.
In general, teens’ reading interest is sparked by peer influence and popular trends. The current popular reading trend is Fantasy/Romance due to the book Twilight by Stephenie meyer. Other genres that appeal to them are Adventure, Mystery/Thriller, and Fantasy. Stories in these genres are usually fast-paced and contain elements of courage, suspense and triumphs.
Teens go for books taht are visually-appealing i.e. those with attractive covers and good illustrations. It is also important for the first 10 pages of the book to catch their attention. Thereafter, the story should have enough plots to sustain their interest. Other important factors in teens’ choices are stories told in chronological order that do not have too many flashbacks, with well-defined characters, and written in a dialogue rather than in descriptive style.
Most teens, especially non-avid readers, have not developed a reading preference for any genre. They like materials that are easy to read and would go for magazines, comics and graphic novels. For non-avid readers, it is also good to look out for print-to-screen or screen-to-print titles.
1. Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief
Author: Rick Riordan
Call No.: Y RIO
Publisher: London: Puffin, 2010.
Author: Christopher Paolini
Call No.: Y PAO
Publisher: New York: Laurel-Leaf Books, 2006.
For more articles on reading and writing for your child, see: