2016 TAYSHAS List

The Tayshas High School Reading List is intended to motivate young adults in grades 9-12 to become lifelong readers and to participate in the community of readers in Texas.

Take a peek at the TAYSHAS TOP TEN for 2016 or the entire list below.

the wrath and the dawn

The Wrath and the Dawn by Renée Ahdieh

In this reimagining of The Arabian Nights, Shahrzad plans to avenge the death of her dearest friend by volunteering to marry the murderous boy-king of Khorasan but discovers not all is as it seems within the palace.

shutter

Shutter by Courtney Alameda

Seventeen-year-old Micheline Helsing is a tetrachcromat, able to see ghosts in color and capture them on film, but when a routine hunt goes awry, Micheline is infected with a curse known as a soulchain and if she is unable to exorcise the entity in seven days, she will be destroyed, body and soul.

simon vs the homo sapiens agenda

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

Sixteen-year-old, not-so-openly-gay Simon Spier is blackmailed into playing wingman for his classmate or else his sexual identity--and that of his pen pal--will be revealed.

the tightrope walkers

The Tightrope Walkers by David Almond

Coming of age in the shadow of northern England's shipyards, young Dominic is torn between the extremes of his shipbuilder family's lifestyle, a complex bully to whom he finds himself irresistibly drawn, and the tightrope-walking girl he loves.

symphony for the city of the dead

Symphony for the City of the Dead: Dmitri Shostakovich and the Siege of Leningrad by M.T. Anderson

An account of the Siege of Leningrad reveals the role played by Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich and his Leningrad Symphony in rallying and commemorating their fellow citizens.

some assembly required

Some Assembly Required: The Not-So-Secret Life of a Transgender Teen by Arin Andrews

Seventeen-year-old Arin Andrews shares all the hilarious, painful, and poignant details of undergoing gender reassignment as a high school student in this winning teen memoir.

mosquitoland

Mosquitoland by David Arnold

When she learns that her mother is sick in Ohio, Mim confronts her demons on a thousand-mile odyssey from Mississippi that redefines her notions of love, loyalty, and what it means to be sane.

silent alarm

Silent Alarm by Jennifer Banash

Alys, a Plaineville, Wisconsin, junior who dreams of studying violin at Julliard, must deal with the aftermath of a tragic high school shooting in which her older brother, Luke, was the shooter.

the rise & fall of the gallivanters

The Rise and Fall of the Gallivanters by M.J. Beaufrand

In 1983, a band led by a David Bowie lookalike prepares to compete in a battle of the bands at a possibly evil brewery, and must also cope with the fact that bass player Evan is getting sicker and sicker, much like his best friend Noah's abusive father did before his death several years earlier.

zac & mia

Zac & Mia by A.J. Betts

The last person Zac expects in the room next door is a girl like Mia, angry and feisty with questionable taste in music. In the real world, he wouldn't--couldn't--be friends with her. In hospital different rules apply, and what begins as a knock on the wall leads to a note--then a friendship neither of them sees coming.

tommy

Tommy: The Gun that Changed America by Karen Blumenthal

Examines the origins of America's debate over gun control sparked by a practical gun intended for military use that became a weapon of choice for outlaws before Congress attempted to remove it from the streets.

the game of love and death

The Game of Love and Death by Martha Brockenbrough

In Seattle in 1937 two seventeen-year-olds, Henry, who is white, and Flora, who is African-American, become the unwitting pawns in a game played by two immortal figures, Love and Death, where they must choose each other at the end, or one of them will die.

the bunker diary

The Bunker Diary by Kevin Brooks

Sixteen-year-old Linus Weems, a street person since leaving his wealthy father's home, is kidnapped and taken to an underground bunker where he's soon joined by five others, ranging in age from nine to seventy, who are alternately cared for and tortured by their unseen captor.

laughing at my nightmare

Laughing at My Nightmare by Shane Burcaw

With acerbic wit & a hilarious voice, Shane Burcaw's YA memoir describes the challenges he faces as a 20-year-old with muscular atrophy. From awkward handshakes to trying to finding a girlfriend and everything in between.

the girl from the well

Girl from the Well by Rin Chupeco

Okiku has wandered the world for centuries, freeing the innocent ghosts of the murdered-dead and taking the lives of killers with the vengeance they are due, but when she meets Tark she knows the moody teen with the series of intricate tattoos is not a monster and needs to be freed from the demonic malevolence that clings to him.

death coming up the hill

Death Coming Up the Hill by Chris Crowe

Douglas Ashe keeps a weekly record of historical and personal events in 1968, the year he turns seventeen, including the escalating war in Vietnam, assassinations, rampant racism, and rioting, his first girlfriend, his parents' separation, and a longed-for sister.

spare parts

Spare Parts: Four Undocumented Teenagers, One Ugly Robot and the Battle for the American Dream by Joshua Davis

Relates how four undocumented Mexican immigrants in Arizona put together an underwater robot from scavenged parts and went on to win the National Underwater Robotics Competition at UC Santa Barbara.

i'll meet you there

I’ll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios

Skylar Evans, seventeen, yearns to escape Creek View by attending art school, but after her mother's job loss puts her dream at risk, a rekindled friendship with Josh, who joined the Marines to get away then lost a leg in Afghanistan, and her job at the Paradise motel lead her to appreciate her home town.

elena vanishing

Elena Vanishing by Elena & Clare B. Dunkle

Seventeen-year-old Elena is vanishing. Every day means renewed determination, so every day means fewer calories. This is the story of a girl whose armor against anxiety becomes artillery against herself as she battles on both sides of a lose-lose war in a struggle with anorexia.

boys don't knit

Boys Don’t Knit (in Public) by T.S. Easton

After a brush with the law, Ben, a dyed-in-the-wool worrier, must take up a new hobby and chooses knitting, an activity at which he excels but must try to keep secret from his friends, enemies, and sports-obsessed father.

family romanov

The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion & the Fall of Imperial Russia by Candace Fleming

Traces the story of the Russian Revolution, the lives of the Romanov family, and the story of their tragic deaths, in an account that draws on primary source materials and includes period photography.

carnival at bray

The Carnival at Bray by Jessie Ann Foley

Uprooted from Chicago to rural Ireland, Maggie searches for her place in the country she now calls home before enduring a tragedy that sends her on a pilgrimage to fulfill her uncle's request.

dime

Dime by E.R. Frank

Fourteen-year-old Dime, a foster child in Newark, New Jersey, finds love and family as a prostitute, but when her pimp rejects her for a new girl, will Dime have the strength to leave?

the dead i know

The Dead I Know by Scot Gardner

Aaron Rowe's new job at a funeral parlor may be his salvation from sleepwalking, dreams he cannot explain and memories he cannot recover, but if he does not discover the truth about his hidden past soon, he may fall asleep one night and never wake up.

the unfinished life of addison stone

The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone by Adele Griffin

When a celebrated New York City teenager, known for her subversive street art, mysteriously dies, her life is examined in a series of interviews with her parents, friends, boyfriends, mentors, and critics.

cut me free

Cut Me Free by J.R. Johansson

A seventeen year old barely escapes her abusive parents and creates a new identity that is quickly compromised when her attempt to save a young girl attracts a deadly stalker.

the story of owen

The Story of Owen: Dragon Slayer of Trondheim by E.K. Johnston

In an alternate world where industrialization has caused many species of carbon-eating dragons to thrive, Owen, a slayer being trained by his famous father and aunt, and Siobahn, his bard, face a dragon infestation near their small town in Canada.

one thing stolen

One Thing Stolen by Beth Kephart

Nadia Cara is in Florence, Italy with her family because her professor father is researching the 1966 flood, but Nadia herself is in trouble--she has turned into a kleptomaniac and she feels detached from everything, except for an elusive Italian boy whom no one but herself has seen.

glory o'brien's history of the future

Glory O’Brien’s History of the Future by A.S. King

As her high school graduation draws near, Glory O'Brien begins having powerful and terrifying visions of the future as she struggles with her long-buried grief over her mother's suicide.

read between the lines

Read Between the Lines by Jo Knowles

A collection of interrelated stories follow nine teens and one teacher through a seemingly ordinary day, with uncertainties, traumas, heartbreak, and revenge.

monkey wars

Monkey Wars by Richard Kurti

When rhesus monkeys are brutally massacred on the streets of Kolkata by a troop of power hungry langur monkeys, a young langur soldier's life is changed forever.

there will be lies

There Will Be Lies by Nick Lake

Shelby Cooper, nearly eighteen, has been overprotected by her single mother all her life but after a car accident, Shelby's mother steals her away from the hospital, revealing that Shelby's father is not dead, but rather a violent man who promised to hunt them down.

like no other

Like No Other by Una LaMarche

Though their relationship is strictly forbidden, Devorah and Jax arrange secret meetings and risk everything to be together. But how far can they possibly go? Just how much are they willing to give up?

razorhurst

Razorhurst by Justine Larbalestier

In 1932, in Sydney's deadly Razorhurst neighborhood, where crime and razor-wielding men rule, two girls with contrasting lives who share the ability to see ghosts meet over a dead body and find themselves on the run from mob bosses.

zeroboxer

Zeroboxer by Fonda Lee

As seventeen-year-old Carr 'the Raptor' Luka rises to fame in the weightless combat sport of zeroboxing, he learns a devastating secret that jeopardizes not only his future in the sport, but interplanetary relations.

court of thorns and roses

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from stories, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin, a High Lord of the faeries. As her feelings toward him transform from hostility to a fiery passion, the threats against the faerie lands grow. Feyre must fight to break an ancient curse or she will lose Tamlin forever.

how it went down

How It Went Down by Kekla Magoon

When sixteen-year-old Tariq Johnson is shot to death, his community is thrown into an uproar because Tariq was black and the shooter, Jack Franklin, is white, and in the aftermath everyone has something to say, but no two accounts of the events agree.

the tragic age

The Tragic Age by Stephen Metcalfe

Billy doesn't see the point of connecting with the world, but everything changes when the charismatic renegade Twom and his deceased sister's old friend Gretchen enter his life, with one leading him toward disaster and the other toward happiness.

dumplin

Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy

Sixteen-year-old Willowdean wants to prove to everyone in her small Texas town that she is more than just a fat girl, so, while grappling with her feelings for a co-worker who is clearly attracted to her, Will and some other misfits prepare to compete in the beauty pageant her mother runs.

all the bright places

All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

Told in alternating voices, when Theodore Finch and Violet Markey meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school--both teetering on the edge--it's the beginning of an unlikely relationship, a journey to discover the "natural wonders" of the state of Indiana, and two teens' desperate desire to heal and save one another.

sacred lies of minnow bly

The Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly by Stephanie Oakes

A handless teen escapes from a cult, only to find herself in juvenile detention and suspected of knowing who murdered her cult leader.

shadowshaper

Shadowshaper by Daniel José Older

When the murals painted on the walls of her Brooklyn neighborhood start to change and fade in front of her, Sierra Santiago realizes that something strange is going on--then she discovers her Puerto Rican family are shadowshapers and finds herself in a battle with an evil anthropologist for the lives of her family and friends.

still waters

Still Waters by Ash Parsons

High-schooler Jason, who lives with a drunk, abusive father at home, hopes to earn enough money to escape with his younger sister, Janie, by being tough at school, but the stakes grow ever more dangerous and soon even his fists and ability to think on his feet are not enough to keep his head above water.

out of darkness

Out of Darkness by Ashley Hope Pérez

Loosely based on a school explosion that took place in New London, Texas in 1937, this is the story of two teenagers: Naomi, who is Mexican American, and Wash, who is African American, and their dealings with race, segregation, love, and the forces that destroy people.

my true love gave to me

My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories edited by Stephanie Perkins

If you love holiday stories, holiday movies, made-for-TV-holiday specials, holiday episodes of your favorite sitcoms and, especially, if you love holiday anthologies, you're going to fall in love with My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories by twelve bestselling young adult writers, edited by the international bestselling Stephanie Perkins.

gabi a girl in pieces

Gabi, A Girl in Pieces by Isabel Quintero

Sixteen-year-old Gabi Hernandez chronicles her senior year in high school as she copes with her friend Cindy's pregnancy, friend Sebastian's coming out, her father's meth habit, her own cravings for food and cute boys, and especially, the poetry that helps forge her identity.

kissing in america

Kissing in America by Margo Rabb

When she falls for a boy who moves to California without any warning, sixteen-year-old Eva and her best friend, Annie, set off on a road trip to the West Coast to see him again, confronting the complex truth about love along the way.

the boy in the black suit

The Boy in the Black Suit by Jason Reynolds

Soon after his mother's death, Matt takes a job at a funeral home in his tough Brooklyn neighborhood and, while attending and assisting with funerals, begins to accept her death and his responsibilities as a man.

bone gap

Bone Gap by Laura Ruby

Eighteen-year-old Finn, an outsider in his quiet Midwestern town, is the only witness to the abduction of town favorite Roza, but his inability to distinguish between faces makes it difficult for him to help with the investigation, and subjects him to even more ridicule and bullying.

marina

Marina by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

When boarding-school student Oscar Drai meets Marina, she promises him a mystery and takes him to a secret graveyard deep in Barcelona, where they witness a woman dressed in black lay a single rose atop a gravestone etched with a black butterfly. Their curiosity leads them down a dangerous path, and they discover a decades-old conspiracy that puts their lives in the hands of forces more sinister and mystical than they could have believed possible.

a list of things that didn't kill me

A List of Things that Didn’t Kill Me by Jason Schmidt

In his searing, honest, and ultimately inspiring memoir, Jason Schmidt tells the story of growing up with an abusive father, who contracted HIV and ultimately died from complications of AIDS when Jason was a teenager.

x: a novel

X: A Novel by Ilyasah Shabazz & Kekla Magoon

Follows the childhood of the civil rights leader to his imprisonment at age twenty, where he found the faith that would lead him to his path towards activism and justice.

challenger deep

Challenger Deep by Neal Shusterman

A teenage boy struggles with schizophrenia.

the walls around us

The Walls Around Us by Nova Ren Suma

Orianna and Violet are ballet dancers and best friends, but when the ballerinas who have been harassing Violet are murdered, Orianna is accused of the crime and sent to a juvenile detention center where she meets Amber and they experience supernatural events linking the girls together.

all the rage

All the Rage by Courtney Summers

After being assaulted by the sheriff's son, Kellan Turner, Romy Grey was branded a liar and bullied by former friends, finding refuge only in the diner where she works outside of town, but when a girl with ties to both Romy and Kellan goes missing and news of him assaulting another girl gets out, Romy must decide whether to speak out again or risk having more girls hurt.

we should hang out sometime

We Should Hang Out Sometime: Embarrassingly, a True Story by Josh Sundquist

The Paralympic ski racer, YouTube star, and motivational speaker documents his coming of age as an amputee cancer survivor and his efforts to investigate past dates gone wrong to discover why he was still single.

an ember in the ashes

An Ember in the Ashes by Saba Tahir

Laia is a Scholar living under the iron-fisted rule of the Martial Empire. When her brother is arrested for treason, Laia goes undercover as a slave at the empire's greatest military academy in exchange for assistance from rebel Scholars who claim that they will help to save her brother from execution.

slasher girls & monster boys

Slasher Girls & Monster Boys, stories selected by April Genevieve Tucholke

Inspired by classic tales and films, a collection of fourteen short stories ranging from bloody horror, to psychological thrillers, to supernatural creatures, to unsettling, all-too-possible realism, by acclaimed YA authors of every genre.

afterworlds

Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld

In alternating chapters, eighteen-year-old Darcy Patel navigates the New York City publishing world and Lizzie, the heroine of Darcy's novel, slips into the "Afterworld" to survive a terrorist attack and becomes a spirit guide, as both face many challenges and both fall in love.

diamond boy

Diamond Boy by Michael Williams

When Patson's family moves to the Marange region of Zimbabwe, he begins working in the mines, searching for blood diamonds, until government soldiers arrive and Patson is forced to journey to South Africa in search of his missing sister and a better life.

wildlife

Wildlife by Fiona Wood

Two sixteen-year-old girls in Australia come together at an outdoor semester of school, before university--one thinking about boys and growing up, the other about death and grief, but somehow they must help each other to find themselves.

everything everything

Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon

The story of a teenage girl who's literally allergic to the outside world. When a new family moves in next door, she begins a complicated romance that challenges everything she's ever known.