The Worst Young Adult Novels You've Read


Anyone still reading The Prydain Chronicles or The Dark Is Rising sequence? The YA fiction from back when I was the target demographic is still my favorite (maybe unsurprisingly)… though I’ve also enjoyed Harry Potter (notwithstanding the increasingly desperate need for an editor) and Hunger Games (notwithstanding the diminishing returns of the setting in books 2 and 3). And the second to last Twilight movie was beautifully batshit.


Wow, that sounds super trashy and sort of like something I’d like. Do you remember the title? Lmao.

There’s so many good YA’s out there! And I love, love, love The Raven Cycle. I’m in the middle of the third one right now. I hope to be half as good as a writer as Maggie Steifveter on day. She’s like a fucking word wizard. And that characterization!! Hnnnnng…

Have you read anything by Laini Taylor? Those two authors remind me of each other.

The Prydain Chronicles have a special place in my heart. They’re one of the books that inspired my love of Welsh folklore. I think I read the Mabinogion because it was mentioned with the series in a forum a long, long time ago.


That’s why I like it, I guess.

I don’t like the 39 Clues series (the one by the many different authors). It annoys me because after every book, you have to play out a mission on the computer. I think the reason I actually finished it was because the books are thin and not much in them. Just a light read. Same with the other series: the one that was about time. I didn’t finish that one though, too many references to the computer version which I didn’t play.


I actually enjoyed The Host too, I felt the dynamic between Melanie and Wanda was excellent, and while the movie glossed over a lot of the lore, it covered the basics and managed to entertain me.


Hmmm just wanted to ask if YA and NA are the same? I mean young adult genre and new adult seem to get mixed up. So are they the same or different?

For me it seems like the same thing, but the YA has tweeny as characters and the NA has characters that just graduated high-school vibes lols.

Does anyone else feel like it should just be the same category or not lols.

Twilight is the most bad read so far for me. Yet I liked some parts of the story just not the whole story if i am making any sense?

The one i liked so far from the YA category is Reasons I Fell for the Funny Fat Friend.


@Mim That fairy series, do you mean the Wings series by Aprilynne Pike, perhaps? The third book is called Wild. The main character is Laurel Sewell. I never read it myself, only the blurb on the back and I didn’t like it at all.

It has been my mission for a while now to find an English book series that has a fantasy and/or supernatural setting without falling into cliche’s and predictability. So far I’ve failed more times than I would’ve liked. While not all series i’m gonna list are bad, they become boring/bad as the serie progresses.
I love supernatural creatures especially angels and vampires, but most series are just painful to read.

-Twilight, whine whine, oh shiny, whine whine. I’m so beautiful it hurts. The End. Only the occasinal fanfiction was amusing, the books/movies definitely weren’t.
-The Hollows, I really, really, REALLY dislike the main character, Rachel. I only ever read the first book but it took a lot of effort to finish it.
-Grave Witch, not a bad series but very predictable. Oh big surprise the normal human girl is actually a powerful faery and the handsome warrior is in love with her. To make things more complicated there’s the handsome personification of death who also likes her and a lot of drama ensues.
Mortal Instruments, never read but it’s another one of those hype series that are sad and prediactable.
Hunger Games, Peeta Peeta Peeta, someone dies, another one dies, Peeta, Peeta. I don’t like Battle Royale settings, but HG made it even worse by adding a stupid ‘romance’ plot.
Skulduggery Pleasant, I really enjoyed the first 3 books but for me the series went down hill afterwards. Several jokes were repeated from earlier books and all the characters I liked died or semi-died (looking at you Tanith). The plot become really bad and utterly ridiculous (even for a fantasy setting). I was so disappointed with the ending that I never read the books again.
Vampire Academy, at first I thought the relationship between Lissa and Rose could be very interesting, but again they had to ruin a potentially good serie with love triangle romance crap. I often confuse this serie with the other vampire novel series Chosen and the TV series Vampire Diaries, other examples of vampires/supernatural just being a flavor for sad run-of-the-mill romance/drama crap.
Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter, I thought it would be like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, I was SO wrong. I only ever read the first book, never touched it again.
Percy Jackson, some uninteresting dude turns out to be the ultimate awesome hero. Bah. They just used the mythological setting to get more sales. Poor Greek mythology, being used like that.

Sigh So now I have a lot of books and series I find bad, but none that I really like or fully enjoyed. Still looking for an enjoyable series with a supernatural or fantasy setting and a female lead. I never thought it would be that hard to find one. The only series I really love is Harry Potter. Lord of the Rings and A song of Ice and Fire bore me to death. I was never able to get into Eragon either, maybe my taste is to specific or demanding.


So true :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


Yeah, think that was the book?

There’s that one series too about people that can read themselves into stories, there was a horrible adaptation with Brenden Fraser I think…oh, Inkheart. It’s good, not too fond of the female lead, but meh. Movie was terrible for those who read the books.

I rather enjoyed Eragon, I just couldn’t stand Arya and Angela. They were too cliche, especially Arya: ‘Bad-ass gorgeous, too good for you elfin princess’- Pfft. Wish Eragon and Nasuada had something. Or Nasuada and Orrin. But it’s implied her and whats his face, that’s okay.

Loved Rory and Katrina. Such cuteness.

And Saphira is swag. ^^ I suggest it. Just make fart noises at Arya when she comes along. Entitled so-and-so. :stuck_out_tongue:


Ah yes Inkheart, I’ve seen the movie and I liked it.But I never read the books so perhaps that’s why. I guess I can give it a try, the setting is interesting enough. As for Eragon, I gueass it’s just not for me. I did try but it just wasn’t what I was looking for.


I’ve been thinking a lot about Eragon recently. And concluded that the author had some great ideas e.g. how magic worked, how elves had to be super-polite to avoid century-long feuds, interspecies synchronising (as in how humans, elves and dragons had changed being linked by magic). But he executed it pretty badly with uninteresting characters and some awkward dialogue.

Not to say there weren’t some good characters. Saphira, as Mim says, and I liked Elva and Nasuada.

Since he’s only about 23 years old at the moment I’m hoping he’ll only get better :smiley:


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Nah. It’s just a great series (I only read the first book though).


The movie is a TERRIBLE adaption, let me tell you!


I just wanted to add that Eragon was too child fantasy for me. I mean it good, but it was so target to young audiences that I felt like it should be just for kids. You know, like that book a wimpy kid. Just sharing a something that got on my head just now. :open_mouth:


Such innocents in this thread who have never plumbed the terrible depths of YA…:smiley:
Possibly not the worst, but a strong contender for me, was this book called Wither I read a few years ago. It was set in a dystopian future where genetic engineering meant that everyone born after a certain time dies before they’re twenty, so everyone wants to breed as soon as possible. The main character gets kidnapped to be one of three wives to this guy. Now, this premise I could accept, but the main character spent most of the book not even trying to get out of the situation, the narrative kept trying to make me sympathise with the kidnapper (how about no) and overall it was just dripping with such creepy rapey pedophilic implications that just…bleh. There’s worse out there than sparkly vampires :anguished:


It seems the movies based off of these books aren’t doing as well with the exceptions of a few.


The movies normally are worse than the book, but I watch them because they are shorter, and it requires less effort.


As for bad YA books (and I read dozens, and I loved them all), I read Blaine Lee Pardoe’s Exodus Road when I was about 15. Pardoe is an award-winning author (but not for that book) who has been on the New York Times best-seller list (again, not that book). Exodus Road was the first time I read a novel and thought that I could do better. I have kept a copy of it ever since.

I can’t remember what I thought was so bad about it. I’ll have to look at it again.

Of course people are still reading The Dark is Rising and Prydain! They’re classics. You can’t be a kid who loves fantasy stories without at least reading The Book of Three. That’s like putting your fingers in your ears and jumping down a well.


Man have I read a lot of bad books :sweat_smile:

First thing that comes to mind is Divergent, yuck. A Hunger Games rip off with boring, forgettable characters and a predictable plot. Why don’t YA authors just get the hint and realize that the dystopia genre has been beaten to death already? I heard that the movie wasn’t too bad, but I’ve been avoiding that series with such passion that I haven’t seen it.

Hush, hush is the typical bad boy love story but with… a fallen angel? And it got oddly sexual, I think? I read it a looong time ago, so I don’t remember the whole story, I just remember it being horridly cliche.

Twilight, oh Twilight. I’m not the only one that thought Edward Cullen was creepy, right? Didn’t he, like, watch Bella Swan (or w/e her name is) sleep or something? Creepy!

The Mortal Instruments or whatever was pretty bad, too, I can’t believe I read the first four books! The world, though, was… pretty interesting, actually? The ideas were cool, but the actual book was horrible, a real typical YA novel with a love triangle and all. Love triangles are a big pet peeve of mine, especially when the lady is supposed to be all tough and independent, like, girl, you’re an independent woman but you can’t choose between two guys!?

The Fault in Our Stars. Ugh. A book that tried to say, “hey, don’t romanticize cancer,” and then promptly went and romanticized cancer. I don’t like a lot of John Green’s books, actually, something about them just rubs me the wrong way… (This video can explain why the Fault in Our Stars is so bad better than I can:

I wasn’t too fond of Maximum Ride, either. (I… I’m not the only one who read that series, right?) I found the plot really weird, like, all the characters were part of this weird “angel experiment” and they all had wings, and… monsters called Erasers were after them? If that isn’t the silliest name for a monster I don’t know what is. I couldn’t resist imagining giant erasers with legs and claws chasing them around :joy:

I’ll also add anything Rick Riordan’s ever written to the list! That… probably sounds harsh, but I don’t like his writing style or his books at all. I thought I would enjoy the Percy Jackson series, because I love Greek Mythology, but I found myself disappointed with how he portrayed the gods. And then I saw the Kane Chronicles, and I practically live and breathe Egyptian Mythology so I thought that it would be better, but no. The characters didn’t interest me, Rick disappointed me with the gods again, and it got really creepy too? The female character (who was like… 12???) took romantic interest in Anubis. ANUBIS. A 4,000 year old god. And she was pretty young, I think. Ew. Yeah, I won’t be reading any more of his books any time soon.

I’m very picky when it comes to literature, so, yeah. (And half of the books I hate, I read a very long time ago, so maybe my opinions aren’t justified.) The only book I’ve read that I’ve been like, wow, that’s awesome, is The Book Thief, so for a good book I definitely recommend that :grin: The Hunger Games is also a guilty pleasure of mine, mostly because it was the first typical dystopia love triangle story I read, so I thought it was amazing.


Oh my gosh. Wait. I finally found someone who dislikes the Selection! I found the characters a tad bit too shallow and the pace a tad bit too fast, but apparently, hopeless-romantic tween/teens love this sort of thing. Let’s not forget the childhood love/sweetheart trope that was thrown around in that series. The first time I got to read the selection all I could think about was “gahd is this some teenage version of the bachelor?” Which it actually is when you think about it. Gahd, I pray to thee.