Books From My Teen Years That I Would Love To Revisit
This week’s topic is actually best books read in 2018 but I already posted a similar topic last week so I’m gonna go with books from my teen years I’d love to revisit. As the topic was originally a TTT throwback, it seemed appropriate that I go back to the past with my favourite retro reads.
1. I Know What You Did Last Summer by Lois Duncan
Now, if I let myself, this list would probably be full of Lois Duncan books. I was very fond of them as a teenager! Strangely enough, although ‘I Know What You Did Last Summer’ is not my favourite of her works, the plot still majorly intrigues me.
Very different from the film adaptation (no crazed, hook-wielding fisherman here!) this is a tale of guilt and how it affects (or in some cases, doesn’t affect) a group of teens. There is a revenge plot but it is for something more thought-provoking and ultimately more tragic – the accidental death of a child. Although dated, it is powerful stuff.
2. Happy Endings Are All Alike by Sandra Scoppettone
This book is still one of my all-time favourites and it is past time I paid it a little revisit! This tale of two girls who fall in love is pretty timeless. Jaret and Peggy are in love. However, this is the 1970’s and they have to keep their relationship secret. There are those who would punish them for that love if they find out. It is a small town and things do not go unnoticed for long…
It is scary how relevant some of the themes still are, such as homophobia and violence towards gay people. I wish that the attack suffered by Jaret wasn’t something young girls still had to worry about. Unfortunately, it is still something every young women has to be on her guard about. Although some of the language and terminology is pretty dated (far-out!) this book still carries a powerful message. It shouldn’t be forgotten or overlooked because of its age.
3. Tiger Eyes by Judy Blume
‘Tiger Eyes’ is not one of Judy Blume’s most popular young adult books but it is my favourite. I love the story and it made a huge impression on me as a teen. Young Davey loses her father in a shocking moment of violence. Her whole world crumbles to pieces as she tries to deal her grief. Her mother moves the family to Mexico for a new start and it is here she meets the mysterious Wolf. Bit by bit, she begins to stitch her life back together.
‘Tiger Eyes’ had an enormous impact on me as a youth. At this time in my life I hadn’t really dealt with much in the way of grief. This book really opened my eyes to a lot of things. I am forever grateful to it for that. I was shocked to find out later that this was a commonly banned book!
4. Winter Dreams by Barbara Conklin
This list would not be complete without a ‘Sweet Dreams’ title! Although these books were pure bubblegum (the teen equivalent of Mills and Boon, I suppose) I truly loved them. They were total escapism. The stories were shallow and the characters pretty one-dimensional but they were such a huge part of my youth.
I have been collecting these for a couple of years (still nowhere near getting them all!) but ‘Winter Dreams’ was and is my favourite of all. I had an old shabby ex library copy but I managed to track down a decent second-hand copy. Best decision ever – I can’t wait to revisit this old favourite.
5. The Other Side of Dark by Joan Lowery Nixon
‘The Other Side of Dark’ was a book that I remember reading and loving. I am crap at remembering authors though and for absolutely ages I could not recall who had written this. Eventually, I stumbled across this book again after many, many years and I was surprised to find out it was written by none other than Joan Lowery Nixon! I read a whole tonne of her books as a teen so I am pretty flabbergasted I never made the connection.
This is an intense thriller which was pretty terrifying to me reading it as a younger teen. I am not sure how well it will have stood up to the test of time but I’m hopeful that it will still deliver.
6. Horrorscope by Nicholas Adams
Anyone else remember the ‘Nightmares’ series put out Harper Collins under their ‘Lions’ imprint? I adore this series! I love it even more than the much more widely successful ‘Point Horror’ series. The stories just seemed a little less juvenile (or they did at the time, at least).
I have spent the last couple of years collecting these and I just recently (as of about two weeks ago) finished the set! I cannot wait to revisit this series and ‘Horrorscope’ in particular because it was my favourite back in the day.
7. Summer Dreams, Winter Love by Mary Francis Shura
I was obsessed with this book back when I was a teen. I’m not sure exactly why either – something about this book just brings out my inner fangirl. I remember finding it so utterly realistic too. The story revolves around a young girl in love with an older guy. Something that is probably familiar to many teens (and adults natch).
I also spent hours sketching the characters and recreating the cover. Yep, I was pretty sad back then! I pined along with the main character and thought of my own one-sided crushes on boys who wouldn’t give me the time of day. I haven’t read many books by Mary Francis Shura but still, I was sad to read that she died tragically in a fire not long after this book was released (or perhaps even before? Not quite sure).
8. Beach House by R.L. Stine
I would be remiss not to include a ‘Point Horror’ title on this list, c’mon what do you take me for? 😉 I debated about whether to put R.L. Stine or Richie Tankersley Cusick in this spot but Stine just won out by having the trippiest book yet! ‘Beach House’ is a book about murder (duh) but it also is about time travel! See, I told you it was trippy!
Out of all the ‘Point Horror’ books, this is the one I remember the most (probably because of how whack it was!) I really want to revisit this one to see if it is at batsh*t crazy as I remember it being. The jury is still out!!
9. Remember Me by Christopher Pike
Christopher Pike was my jam back in the day. Seriously obsessed with his books. I read them alongside Stephen King and loved them every bit as much! ‘Remember Me’ is my absolute favourite though. The whole concept is just so out-there (in a good way).
Shari Cooper is dead. Murdered at her own birthday party. Now a ghost, she decides to solve her own murder even though everyone thinks it was a suicide. With the help of her girlhood crush Peter (also dead), Shari stalks her friends and family. Looking for clues as to who killed her. Ah, this book! So many great memories! Such a zany plot but it totally works.
10. Daughters of Darkness by L.J. Smith
I frickin’ adored this series! ‘Daughters of Darkness’ was my favourite along with ‘Soulmate’. Annoying that it doesn’t have a proper ending! *grumble, grumble* Although the author has been saying for years she is working on the final book; I very much doubt it will ever see the light of day (see what I did there?) 😉
I definitely want to revisit this series (and this book in particular). However, the fact that it doesn’t have an ending is pretty off-putting. Nevertheless, the series is still awesome enough that it warrants a re-read.