20 Best Classic Books For Teens

Navigating the world as a teenager can be an exciting yet challenging journey and in this journey, classic books often become a trusted companion, offering comfort and inspiration.

In this blog post, we’ll explore the 20 Best Classic Books For Teens.

In fact:

The classic books mentioned in this post are based on comprehensive research and reviews and are considered some of the Classic Books For Teens.

Are You In a Hurry?

If you’re in a hurry, your search is over! We have selected three highly recommended Classic books.

Overview Of The 20 Best Classic Books For Teens

Let’s begin…

Note: You can purchase these books by clicking on the title link. Please note that the links to purchase these books are affiliate links from Amazon.

The Last Full Measure

“The Last Full Measure” by Trent Reedy. The story happens after a big war and follows Danny and his friends. They’re no longer controlled by the government, but they face problems and challenges. When Danny discovers some shocking truths about a powerful group, he and his friends go on a risky journey across the land to make a better society.

Hope and Other Punch Lines

“Hope and Other Punch Lines” by Julie Buxbaum is about a girl named Abbi Hope who became famous because of a photo taken during a sad event called 9/11. Abbi wants to hide from her past and spends the summer working at a camp. Another boy named Noah, who also has sad memories from 9/11, thinks it’s fate that they meet. They work together to find out more about this historic event.


“Doris” by Jeff Nebeker-Johnson continues the story of a woman named Doris. After she becomes free from being a slave, she lives with Luke on a farm. The people in the nearby town accept her, but she still has to deal with her past and face new challenges. The book tells the story of Doris and how she deals with these difficulties.

Deathless Divide

In “Deathless Divide” by Justina Ireland, Jane plans to go to California and find her mother. But life is hard for her. A sad event on the way makes her doubt about staying alive. Jane sees familiar faces from Summerland and gets into mysteries and her own problems. This book is about survival, and facing difficulties in a dangerous world.

Black Was the Ink

“Black Was the Ink” by Michelle Coles is about Malcolm, who follows a teenager. He goes to his family’s farm in Mississippi to escape problems. Suddenly, he starts seeing things from the past through his eyes. He meets important Black leaders from history and learns about their struggles. It’s a story about growing up and understanding history.

A Sitting in St. James

“A Sitting in St. James” by Rita Williams-Garcia follows a lady named Madame who lived in a place for many years. She wants to get a picture of herself painted, even if her family doesn’t agree. The book tells stories from different times, showing how life was on the farm and how people were connected. 

Jo & Laurie

“Jo & Laurie” by Margaret Stohl is set in 1869 in Concord. After Jo’s first book becomes famous, she’s under pressure to write another. Jo and her friend Laurie visit New York for inspiration. But Laurie wants a relationship with Jo. Even Jo rejects his marriage proposal. It’s a story about love and making hard choices.

Bed of Conspiracy

“Bed of Conspiracy” by Juliette Douglas is a story set in 1876. Tom starts a new journey. She teams up with Ross and Sam for a secret mission in Washington DC. There’s a group called Knights planning to take over the government. Tom and her team try to stop them.

Everything We Lose

“Everything We Lose” by Annette Oppenlander is about a boy named Adam. He tries to protect his friend Tip, a slave, but things go wrong, and he joins the Union Army to hide. Adam goes through a tough journey in the war and wants to go home. Tip, on the other hand, faces abuse from a bad farmer after being sold. Their journeys show how hard life was back then.

We Are Not Free

“We Are Not Free” by Traci Chee is a novel that tells the story of fourteen young Japanese-American citizens, living in San Francisco during World War II. Their lives take a turn when they are removed from their homes and placed in camps. As they face injustice, these friends must unite to overcome the challenges that threaten to tear them apart.

Last Night at the Telegraph Club

“Last Night at the Telegraph Club” by Malinda Lo follows Lily as she navigates her feelings for Miller. Their journey of love begins when they step into the Telegraph Club. However, in a society threatened by prejudice, especially against Chinese Americans like Lily, their love becomes difficult. Lily and Miller take a brave stand to embrace their love and fight the challenges of their time.

The Catcher in the Rye

“The Catcher in the Rye” by J.D. Salinge, is about a teenager named Holden who struggles with the fake behavior of adults. After getting kicked out of school, he feels disconnected from the world. Through his journey, he deals with feelings of loneliness and confusion about life. This book explores what it’s like to be a teenager dealing with tough emotions and the pressures of growing up.

As I Lay Dying

“As I Lay Dying” by William Faulkner follows the Bundren family as they travel to fulfill their last wish, to be buried in her hometown. The story is narrated through the perspectives of various family members, each dealing with their own struggles. Their journey is filled with challenges, including nature’s harshness and their own internal conflicts.

To Kill a Mockingbird

“To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee is about a young girl named Scout and her family living in a small town in the southern United States. The story shows how Scout’s father, a kind and fair man named Atticus Finch, defends a black man wrongly accused of a crime he didn’t commit. It teaches us about fairness, kindness, and treating everyone with respect.

East of Eden

“East of Eden” by John Steinbeck follows two families in California. It delves into their lives, struggles, and the complexities of human nature across generations. The story weaves between past and present, highlighting the choices people make and the impact those choices have on their lives.

We Have Always Lived in the Castle

“We Have Always Lived in the Castle” by Shirley Jackson tells the story of the Blackwood sisters, Merricat and Constance, who live isolated in their family estate following a tragic incident that took the lives of their relatives. However, when a foreign cousin arrives, tensions arise. The novel explores themes of isolation and bravery.

The Winter of Our Discontent 

“The Winter of Our Discontent” by John Steinbeck story follows Hawley, a grocery store clerk in a small town. Hawley faces difficulties as he struggles with societal expectations. Pressured by financial hardships, he finds himself torn between principles and the desire for success.

Julie of the Wolves

“Julie of the Wolves” by Jean Craighead George follows the story of a young girl named Miyax, also known as Julie. Left alone in the Alaskan jungle, she faces the harsh nature and discovers how to survive. As she navigates her way home, she faces internal conflicts between her native heritage and the outside world, discovering her true identity amidst the challenges of the wilderness.


“Beowulf” by Gareth Hinds tells the adventures of a heroic warrior named Beowulf. He is a brave hero who fights monsters and scary dragons. The book shows his victories and sad moments, with great battles and lessons.

Jane Eyre

“Jane Eyre” by Charlotte Brontë follows the life of Jane, an orphaned girl facing trouble in her early years. As she grows older, she secures a position as a governess, where she falls in love with the master of the house. But their relationship is restricted due to a secret. This secret threatens their marriage and affects their future. As they struggle with these challenges, Jane must decide between her love and her own integrity.


We hope that our list of classic books for teens has given you some great options to choose from and your teenager will have fun while exploring these classic books.

The classic books recommended in this list have been thoroughly researched and reviewed, and are considered some of the best Classic Books For Teens. While I may not have personally read all of these classic books, they have been highly recommended by other readers.

We would love to hear from you about which classic book your teen enjoyed the most, or if there is a favorite classic book that we missed.

Best wishes and happy reading!

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