Young Adult Novels Of Yesteryears

Young adult readers of today may find it hard to believe, but there was a time, many years ago, when YA fiction wasn’t recognised as such. When young people seeking a good read had to look in either the children’s or adult sections of a bookshop, rather than in their own designated area.

However, even way back then, there was some fabulous YA fiction to be found, if you knew where to look. Here are just a few of our favourite YA novels of yesteryears – the forerunners to the exciting range of YA fiction available in bookshops today:

Locked In Time by Lois Duncan
The original queen of teen fiction, Lois Duncan was known for her high-concept young adult thrillers and suspense novels. It’s hard to choose a favourite from so many great stories (The Twisted Window, Stranger With My Face and Don’t Look Behind You, to name a few), but Locked In Time stands out with its tale of a mysterious family who are not all they appear to be.

Firebrats by Barbara Siegel and Scott Siegel
YA post-apocalyptic fiction at its best, Firebrats was a four-book series of novels featuring teenagers Matt and Dani, who survive a nuclear blast, only to encounter danger in the harsh new world left behind.

Dark Visions by L.J. Smith
Author L.J. Smith is better known for writing The Vampire Diaries novels, but the Dark Visions trilogy is arguably her best work. The series follows a group of psychic teens, as they join a scientific study into their powers and are forced to choose between using those powers for good or evil.

The Face On The Milk Carton by Caroline B. Cooney
Later turned into a TV movie, The Face On The Milk Carton was a thriller about a teen girl called Janie, who sees a photo of her younger self on a milk carton, listed as a ‘missing child’. Realising she was kidnapped, she sets out to uncover the truth and find her real parents.

Witch by Christopher Pike
Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, Christopher Pike was the undisputed king of young adult horror, writing thrilling, page-turning reads such as Scavenger Hunt, Fall Into Darkness and Chain Letter. Witch, one of his most memorable novels, told the story of Julia, a young woman with supernatural powers, and her quest to prevent a terrible vision of the future from coming true.

So those are our picks, but what books do you remember most fondly from years gone by? We’d love to hear about your favourite reads of the past. You can comment below, or get in touch with us via twitter.

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