The Worst Young Adult Novels You've Read


I think one of the recent books that Ive read is called The Red Queen. I was excited to read it up until the point when I actually started to read it.

I thought it was going to be those potitical intrigue stories, but I already called out all the cliches and I knew the twist ending starting from the 3rd or 4th chapter. And I like a good romance plot once in a while…but no. they just had to go down that path.

Im starting to lose hope in these new releases.

  • I was in high school when The Selection series was released, and everyone who read it loved it, except for me. Never even read anything past the first book, and I don’t even remember much about the plot. The covers are pretty though, so bonus points for that.
  • Twilight was a thing when I was in grade school, and since tween girls were shallow as shallow could be, I swallowed it up whole. Loved it when I was 10, but when I reread the entire thing as a teen I questioned myself, “What did I see in this thing???”
  • Divergent started out good, Insurgent was okay, and Allegiant… I’ll just stop at that. The same with the movies, but movie!Insurgent jumped the shark real bad. I refuse to see Allegiant and whatever fourth film they’re making.
  • Same with Rick Riordan’s books. Being a history and mythology buff way before liking it was cool, I appreciated his efforts to get kids into mythology. Percy Jackson was awesome (it’s a different story with the movies though), but when Heroes of Olympus came out and I learned that Percy and the gang are still there, I had to stop. When Kane Chronicles came out, I tried to like it, I really did, but I can’t. It just didn’t have the same magic as Percy did, sorry.


I really liked the first series. I enjoyed the humor and have always loved mythology. I just don’t like when authors drag a series on forever, like with the Warriors books; I loved the first series, enjoyed the second, and then was done after that.


I don’t read YA novels very often, but I tried Divergent and wanted to scream. I saw the movie before reading the books, and I figured the books would be better…how wrong I was! The writing was WAY too simplistic and lacked details, the characters were flat, and Veronica Roth has no idea how to “show, not tell.” So frustrating. I don’t understand how my english teacher could say it was amazing.


Says a lot about the education system, doesn’t it?


Have you read the whole series?

I just remembered a book I absolutely HATED with all my heart. So much that I didn’t even read the next book in the series. Gregor the Overlander (by the Hunger Games author). I hated the plot, I hated the MC, heck, I even hated the baby.

Her love interest betrays her in the first book. She’s a special one that’s half Sliver/half Red, and the reason her brother died was because of that. I’m not going to spoil the whole series, but I actually found some of it to be cliché, but other parts to be quite enjoyable twists.

LOL, yes.



No wonder I didn’t like that Gregor even though all my friends did. This explains so much.


[quote=“Goddess, post:107, topic:15750”]
Have you read the whole series?
[/quote]Nah. I finished the first book and read a smidge of the second before losing interest. There’s a chance something in the later books might have redeemed the series in my eyes but, even if there is, I’ve moved on to greener pastures.


That book makes my blood BOIL. I could write an essay about it. My beef with the Divergent series is strong. It is so strong. But I don’t want the Forum to witness my rage. So I’ll keep it short and sweet.

You can write a book with a language that’s nondescript and simplistic that’s well-done. But it has to have certain elements that make it good: story, propelling dialogue, made-up words a la 1984, etc. But Divergent was way too vague. It wasn’t very enjoyable for me, as someone who likes pretty language.

Tris was so robotic. Heck, everyone felt robotic. I couldn’t sympathize with Tris or Four the obligatory arm candy. I only liked Christina, and even then I didn’t see much of her that delved into her character (from what I’ve seen; the farthest I got into the series was when Tris went to Candor and got the truth serum in Insurgent). I’m just so tired of Byronic heroes. It’s why I don’t like Katniss anymore. I tried reading the book but she was just really boring.

This one time in elementary school we almost read The Hunger Games due to popular demand. Almost (probably from the gore and violence). I’m glad we got to read Maniac McGee instead. Great book.


I wouldn’t mind reading your essay, haha! We should cowrite one that details each and every one of Divergent’s failings!

The robotic characters in Divergent were probably the worst part of the book, to me at least.


I honestly wish young adult books would delve into more serious real world problems in that adolescence take, rather than just keep printing out these stereotypical washboard abs guy likes normal (but surprise! not normal) girl and go on “adventure” to stop evil grown ups thing. It would be a lot more interesting if someone made a young adult book that had unique characters with unique personalities and a unique conflict. Such as, a character struggling with real world problems that adolescents do these days; there are plenty of teenagers out there that actually kill themselves because they are afraid to come out of the closet. It would be interesting to read about a person who is a closeted gay, has super conservative parents who go on and on about how “lucky x child is to be in America and should be grateful for not being one of those queers”. Then maybe the closeted teenager could meet, not even some stereotypical girl, A TEACHER who inspires them to be more confident? Idk just an idea i spat out :stuck_out_tongue: i like it more than hunger games or twilight tbh


@Audien There are those sorts of books.

I can’t suggest any, because they’re not generally what I like to read. I like escapism in my books. I mean, Perry Moore’s Hero has a gay protagonist, who’s got to deal with his sexuality, as well as being a super-hero. In Vintage by Steve Berman, the protagonist is gay, and can see ghosts because he attempted suicide.

But, for me, I don’t like reading realistic fiction, I like my escapism, stories with happy (or at least satisfying) endings, where no one dies.

I think a lot of Young Adult books are empowering, showing stories of teens who can make a difference. The amount of dystopian books, well you could say that our own world is something like a dystopia, but at least in those books they have a chance to make a difference, to change things. I even think, well stereotypical washboard abs guy, isn’t a bad fantasy either. He’s generally not the entire point.

Speaking of which, note how in movies, the woman’s the one who usually serves that purpose? But in a lot of the young adult books, you get female protagonists, with the guy being in that role.

In The Hunger Games, for example, Katniss does struggle with real life problems. Her mother’s got depression, and Katniss is forced to deal with that. She grieves the death of her own father, while she also has to try and hold her family together.

Even Divergent, Tris is dealing with parental expectations, and whether she should do what she knows will make them happy, or if she should carve out a future for herself and take her own path.

Edited To Add: I suppose I’ve missed the most obvious fantasy story, with a gay protagonist, Mercedes Lackey’s Last Herald Mage trilogy, which I’m not sure if it counts as young adult. I certainly read it in my teens. In that Vanyel struggles with his sexuality. There’s a great deal of prejudice against both him, and other gay characters in the books, and also places where there’s less discrimination. Vanyel does at least find love, and acceptance from one family memory, and deals with difficult relations with other members of his family. However I do have so many problems with that book series.


Well I can’t talk about any YA books I really hated, because when I start reading a book and decide I don’t like it I stop and do something better with my time. :stuck_out_tongue:

I notice a lot of people don’t seem to like the Inheritance Cycle very much, though it doesn’t seem to inspire the same vitriolic hate as other books. I’ll go against the grain here and say that I really liked these books when I was a wee lad. If I went back now and read them again I probably wouldn’t like them very much, but at that tender young age I was pretty enthralled. I actually remember rereading Eragon so much that the cover fell off.


To each his own, I suppose.


I’ve read all of the Maximum Ride books, and can safely say it all leads up to a god awful ending that made me very angry that I read all of the books for such a bad ending.


Another common problem with young adult fiction: the endings always suck. I think it’s because the authors come up with an idea they really like but then don’t know what to do with it.


Same here loved the Inheritance Cycle owned all the books, couldn’t really get into the movie though.


You could always bring up books you found kind of “meh” instead of trying to come up with something you hated.
That’s what I did.

Oh and Mirabella: The end to that book where jazz can beat death had a surprisingly non sucking ending actually but it was kind of depressing.


Have a list (in no particular order):

  1. The Poison Diaries - possibly the most boring book ever written
  2. Catching Fire and Mocking Jay - I loved the first book in this series, but it should’ve been a standalone
  3. All the books in The Lorien Legacies series after Fall of Five - they stop making any sense after this
  4. Wicked: Witch & Curse - just thinking about this makes me want to throw up
  5. The Little White Horse - everything just seems shoehorned - the movie is a million times better
  6. Four - we literally don’t learn anything new about any of the characters
  7. The Silver Chair and The Last Battle - these were such a mess, and the ending made me want to slam my head against a wall
  8. Elemental - utterly lackluster


This is why the category “Young adult” peeves me the bloody hell off. Authors such as Mercedes Lackey and David Eddings write about young adults and they go through entire series with these characters but the general population won’t hear about these wonderful books because of this fake category.

Especially for true High Fantasy and escapism masters that wrote in the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s … people today would benefit a lot from those types of novels and series but instead its Harry Potter directly to George Martin and with a pinch of Twilight and Mockingjay thrown in.

I dunno. I guess I must be in the minority but I really wish that some of the better stories involving young adults not listed in the young Adult category got more exposure.