TTT is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week's theme is top ten favorites from before I started blogging.
I started blogging in December of 2008. Up until September of that year, I was webmaster at a K - 8 school and annotated everything that I read on my pages on that school's website. I never weighed in critically on my school pages because there is a reader for every book.
I had planned on continuing the practice of annotating my books on my new school's library pages, but decided to start a blog where I could be a bit more critical and to have something to keep if I ever left that school. You see, eight years worth of work disappeared in a key stroke when the new webmaster took over and, rightfully, made the site her own.
When I read the theme, several books sprang immediately to mind and eventually, ten. I guess you might call it top ten all time faves since I can call them to mind without the help of tags in Goodreads or on my blog(s).
Knights of the Hill Country by Tim Tharp. Random House Children's Books, 2006.
I often recommend this, especially when folks on lists ask for "under-appreciated" or "below the radar" books. I also suggest it to students looking for a smart book with sports.
So Hard to Say by Alex Sanchez. Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2004.
Really, any book written by Sanchez. I just adore him, but this is just the perfect book for middle school, where much of his other writing skews more toward high school.
Fat Kid Rules the World by K.L. Going. Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated, 2003.
I recently reread this one with my ears after watching the Indie movie on DVD. It remains one of my all-time faves.
13 Reasons Why by Jay Asher. Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated, 2007.
Ender's Game (et al) by Orson Scott Card.
Ender's Game was originally published in 1985, but I found it through audio in 2005 and quickly read the rest of the quartet with my ears. The series was originally written for an adult audience and I find that most students do not care for the other three, which deal with Ender as an adult and other philosophical/ ethical questions. They do, however love the Shadow series, especially, Ender's Shadow.
Drums, Girls and Dangerous Pie by Jordan Sonnenblick. Scholastic Press, 2005.
Probably the best "cancer" book for teens & tweens ever. Sonnenblick gets so much right, including the medical stuff.
Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini. Disney Publishing Worldwide, 2006.
This is probably the best book about teenage depression that I have ever read. Haven't seen the movie though. Afraid to, actually.
Ptolemy's Gate by Jonathan Stroud (Bartimaeus Trilogy, #3). Hyperion Books for Children, 2007.
I really loved the entire trilogy, but found Ptolemy's Gate, which, in 2007, was the conclusion of a trilogy, so touching and satisfying that I cried. Haven't read the added fourth book yet, but want to. It's buried deep in TOM.
Rash by Pete Hautman. Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2006.
I could've inserted Godless here, or Mr. Was. I found this alternately sly, funny and scary.
Unwind by Neal Shusterman. Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2007.
I adore just about everything by Neal Shusterman. This one is riveting, as is Unwholly, the long-awaited second book in a planned trilogy. Also, if you ever get the chance to host him, he's amazing with the kids.