The Worst Young Adult Novels You've Read


Jeez, this thread is making me glad I don’t read many books anymore. I know a 50ish year old woman who loves Twilight. Honestly I think she’s a teenage girl in a 50ish year old woman’s body because she pretty much fangirls out constantly about tons of random things. Of course her ridiculous level of passionate fandom (while also actually being quite good at organizing things) makes her the perfect leader for our Tolkien Society group.

The only series I can think of to mention is The Chronicles of Narnia, which I wouldn’t have even thought of if someone else hadn’t mentioned it. I always figured they were meant to be children’s books. At least that’s how my dad treated them when he read them to me as a kid. I actually really liked them going into them… and then we got to the end, and I was like, “Wait… What? Everyone is dead and they’re all in heaven and Aslan is God? That doesn’t make any sense…” It was interesting later to end up finding out that Tolkien and Lewis were actually best friends, and while the former had converted the latter to Christian he didn’t like Chronicles of Narnia either because it turned into such a blunt, tactless allegory. I imagine he thought it would likely have the same effect it had on me. Tolkien notoriously hated blunt allegories. That said, I actually really liked the Chronicles of Narnia, (publishing order) and only disliked the ending as it felt like a giant lazy cop out and insulting to my intelligence… ironically it probably was part of what lead to me becoming an atheist. Hm wait, was Susan an allegory for a strawman atheist? Hoo boy… According to the Chronicles of Narnia Wikia Lewis was going to write a novel about her, but he died. I don’t even feel like I would have liked it, but it would have been interesting just to see what he would have done.

I’ve never read of seen Twilight as I’ve heard so many horrible things about them, and heard nothing good about them, even from people who love them. They just say they love them. This makes me wonder if they love them for reasons they’re ashamed to admit.


I think the Twilight Saga is fun to read, but they’re not exactly literary masterpieces. To use a metaphor, they’re a bit like the junk-food variety of books. It tastes good, but isn’t all that nutritious.


Hm, one of the primary things I hear/read about them is that they’re really badly written so the metaphor doesn’t really make it any less confusing… Of course taste is a lot more complicated when you’re talking about books.


There are a lot of ways to interpret ‘badly written’. Bad plot, bad writing in general, bad grammar, confusing sentence structure… The difference in quality between the writing in the first book and the fourth one is quite noticeable though. If anything you can tell the writer learned a lot in the process. So… perhaps the first book of the series might be badly written but it doesn’t stand out as much because the other books are a lot better? Dunno. Can’t make an objective judgment about it :sweat_smile:


Well, the way I heard it it was all of the above. lol


Unless it’s Twilight the book series, or Buffy The Vampire Hunter, anything with Vampire Love Story as it’s premise was complete rubbish.


I have never read Buffy, but I remember this one YA vampire novel I read that was really good. Can’t remember the name though…


Papertowns I never finished that book, the plot is bad and just didn’t get me.


Buffy the Vampire Slayer is actually a tv show.


YA novels, my favorite topic! As much as I love the genre, I’m not so biased as to not pick out the flaws. As Cinema Sins says, “no movie is without sin.” Same goes for books, obviously.

The Selection, as iris, pointed out, had terrible world building; every effort to make it sound as terrible as it was was soon refuted as characters had open opportunities and wide access to luxury items. The politics of it was poorly implemented as well and a lot of the character’s actions were foolish and unreasonable. The writing was rather plain, and they all had really stupid names. BUT it’s still a major guilty pleasure of mine. And the covers are gorgeous.

I thought the Hunger Games was boring so I never finished it. I’m not big on the franchise.

Don’t get me started on John Green. I only watched the movie to Paper Towns (I read TFiOS in eighth grade) and I hate Margo Roth-Spiegelman (why do they have to say her full name all the time?). She’s a terrible character who thinks she’s so special because she wears bomber jackets and readily points out the symbolism in life. Sometime in December last year I finished a book called “All the Bright Places,” and if you don’t like John Green, I wouldn’t suggest it.

As much as I dislike John Green’s writing, it is nothing compared to the Divergent series. In the first book, Tris had to keep pointing out her short stature after every single sentence. She called her fellow initiates “weak” when she was physically weak as well got beaten to a bloody pulp when sparring. Four was just arm candy, he had no personality. No one had any personality. The character names, while less extravagant than The Selection’s, were so plain and boring. Jeanine Matthews doesn’t scream intimidiation like Lorne Malvo. AND THE END OF INSURGENT MADE ME SO MAD. POST-APOCALYPTIC CHICAGO WAS A 200 YEAR-OLD SOCIAL EXPERIMENT?! THAT’S SO UNETHICAL AND SO UNNECESSARY. WHY, VERONICA ROTH? I didn’t even read the rest of the series, I read some of Insurgent but I stopped.

I hated Maze Runner for the same reasons I hated Divergent, but to a much lesser extent. The plot was so boring and I couldn’t get attached to the characters. My dad listened to all of the audiobooks in the series. Strange considering how much he loves Jim Butcher and anything that isn’t YA.

Nonetheless, I for some reason love to read bad YA novels. It’s a shame how there are so many books that have been snubbed during book awards. None of the books I like ever win, I have the worst luck.


I did, and I really disliked the ending. Although I hate love triangles I wanted her to end up with Gale. I don’t like the last book’s plot, and at the end I could barely push through.

I read Insurgent, but not Allegiant. As for Four, I think he was pretty good arm candy because my friend fell madly in love with him. MADLY. I think I’m gonna watch the movies to find out how it ends though, because I really don’t want to be let off on a cliffhanger.[quote=“TruMaknae, post:50, topic:15750”]
The plot was so boring and I couldn’t get attached to the characters.

The plot could’ve been better, but I’m madly in love with all of his books. I finished Mortality Doctrine yesterday, and I cried. I CRIED :cry:. I actually like the characters, and I was pissed when They killed off Teresa. I HAVE to read the next book of the series or I’ll DIE!!!


There is one Buffy book that I know of. Not sure if it came before or after the show was released but it takes place before Buffy arrives in Sunnydale.

Hmm… there isn’t actually any book that I have read that I outright dislike. I like (and dislike) parts of every book. Sure, some characters or plot points are boring or predictable but I don’t let that stop me from enjoying other parts. I’ve never put down a book - I’ve finished every one that I have read.

I actually enjoy the Shadow Hunter Chronicles (Mortal instruments, Infernal Devices (fav) Bane chronicles (short stories featuring the best character)) and am excited about the upcoming Dark Artifices. What I really don’t like though is movie or show adaptions for a large number of reasons. Namely: I know everything that has already happened so there is no suspense or surprise, I don’t feel like they are portraying the characters properly, or they skip my favourite parts.

Sorry, this post wasn’t exactly relevant to the discussion (worst novels).


I stayed away from YA dystopians, if you tell me there’s too much of those, it’s an overkill genre with each one having that same formula.
“hey I’m special, a chosen one or something, I’m gonna fix this broken system but first let me settle this love thing the authors are forcibly shoving at me.”


The Darren Shan series? They were pretty good.

I’ve encountered a couple of bad Star Trek books. Looking back I’m pretty sure they weren’t any better than glorified fanfiction, and not the good kind either. One of them, set in the TNG era, was so boring, NOTHING happened.


Ooh, ooh, ooh, whining about stuff time, yay!

First of all: That one fairy series, called like…Wild or something about this one girl called Laurel?

Well, she’s pretty as all hell, and perfectly symmetrical- like her hair curls identically the same either side of her face, and she’s pale and blonde and green eyed, and vegan, and turns out she’s a fairy that’s actually a plant-wut- and she’s SUPERMEGAULTRAPOWERFUL for no good reason, though she only knew about her powers like, a month ago, now she’s in this love triangle, and the boys both love her sooooo much, and the one guys best friend who fancied him totally is okay with this Blegh coming in and stealing him away and rapidly finds a less attractive boyfriend and OOHHHH DRAMA SUCH DRAMA, SHE’S PROBABLY ROYALTY TOO, WHO KNOWS?

Twilight: 'nuff said. Other people have and still will rant about this one.

Vampire Diaries: You know how normally the tv show is worse than the book? Not in this case. The tv show is bad (imho). The book(s) is/are worse. Much, much worse. Example: SHE FRICKEN DIES. THEN COMES BACK AS A DUMB ANGEL. AND STEFAN CAN LIVE OFF HAVING SEX AND HER TEARS. AND CALLS HER ‘LITTLE LOVELY LOVE’. AND THE AUTHOR DOESN’T KNOW WHAT SHE WANTS ELENA TO BE SO SHE LIKE: Nao you be a hooman! Nao you a vampire, rawr! Nao you an angel bimbette! Nao you hooman again, haha lol!

Um…hm…Hunger Games? They got repetitive. And blegh. But better than the aforementioned.

Yeah, that’s about it.


Oh, well, I once picked up this YA Alice in Wonderland spin-off. The girl was named Alyss, could talk to bugs, used said bugs as art to make dead bug mosaics because she didn’t want to hear them talk (but like she could hear them cry for help so it was really disturbing??), fought evil plant lady aka Queen of Hearts, and the love triangle was between her childhood friend, her, and the Blue Caterpillar.

It was very bad.


That sounds very…interesting :laughing:


I think I regret most of the books I read as a teen, they were all pretty bad YA novels, and I ate them up.Most notably, looking back I’m most embarrassed about Twilight, some book called Hush Hush, and another book about immortals that I can’t remember the name of. I think there’s a tulip on the cover or something like it. Looking back, they’re all really the same book.:stuck_out_tongue:

That’s not to say there aren’t amazing YA novels out there. One of my favorite series of books is the Raven Cycle, they’re extremely well done.


Hahaha, oh gosh. I must have had a really bad pallet of books. Judging by the first six or so posts in this thread. I actually read the Gossip Girl series about 14 years ago and thought it was interesting enough. You got to read from each person’s point of view. Also, they were slim books and I wasn’t much of a reader back then.

I hate the twilight series (as a movie), but I read the book before hand and it’s a lot better than the movie adaption. As with many book adapted movies. The last book in the series was the best IMO. Except for the whole “imprint” crap. I thought that was an awful way to “solve” the conflict.

I actually enjoyed the Chronicles of Narnia. Or rather, the first couple of books. Afterwards the story seemed to grow tiresome or maybe it was because I was too young to get into the rest of the series.

I’d have to agree with the others here. If the story is bad enough, it wont get finished being read. I haven’t read any “badly” written books lately. I’ll read the other reviews (been buying through kindle lately), and make a decision through that and the book sample. For me, the worst books are the ones that have been poorly plotted or haven’t developed their characters enough.

I’m still meaning to pick up a copy of the Percy Jackson series. I read about the author and was impressed. Real family bloke, started from scratch. His original targeted audience were 12 year old’s. Haven’t heard any bad reviews on his books as of yet.


Tomorrow when the war began. A lot of things rubbed me the wrong way with that one. Had to read it in early high school, disliked it a lot (I believe there’s a movie now, haven’t seen it so not sure if it’s better or worse). Can see why people would like it, but yeah, not me.

I’m going to agree about twilight. (Couldn’t finish the book or the movie). Weirdly enough really liked the book called “The Host” though which is written by the same author. (Movie is watchable but not nearly as good as the book)/