Books with covers that BOYS will actually pick up…

I think we’ve all noticed the YA trend with beautiful girls on the cover, usually in elaborate gowns with long flowing hair.  Now I love these books as much as the next person, but it got me thinking…what about boy readers?  The middle and high school boys I know would never walk around school with books that have those type of covers.  Like these for example…

The tragic thing is that these books are told from alternating perspectives from both a female and male character.  But a boy reader would never guess that by the cover.  So I’ve taken it upon myself to search out great books that also have covers that boys won’t have to hide.

Article 5 by Kristen Simmons.  January 2012.  9780765329585.  Gr. 9-12.  Set in a dystopian future, the Bill of Rights are a thing of the past replaced by the Moral Statutes and the Church of America.  Ember was born out of wedlock and therefore considered a non-citizen.  She’s kept a low profile her whole life, until her mother is arrested by the one boy Ember cares about.

BZRK by Michael Grant.  February 2012.  9781606843123.  Gr. 9-Adult.  Grant steps away from his Gone series to launch this sci-fi spy series.  Set in the near future, BZRK is about control over the human mind.  Armstrong Fancy Gifts Corp. wants to create their own utopia by removing free will with the use of nanobot technology.  Only the BZRK group consisting of teens can stop them and their evil plans.  Like in his Gone series, Grant doesn’t shy away from violence and moral dilemmas in this new action-packed series.  Read Ryan’s full review here.

Final Four by Paul Volponi.  March 2012.  9780670012640.  Gr. 9-12.  Told through flashbacks, journal entries, newspaper accounts and TV interviews, this story focuses on four basketball players facing off in the Final Four of the NCAA Basketball Tournament.  Volponi looks behind the scenes at the realistic and gritty world of college basketball  Put this book in the hands of any basketball fan.

Froi of the Exiles by Melina Marchetta.  March 2012.  9780763647599.  Gr. 9-12.  Set three years after Finnikin of the Rock this story focuses on Froi.  Froi and the other exiles are recovering from the terrible curse placed on Lumatere, when disturbing news of another mysterious curse comes from the kingdom of Charyn, Lumatere’s enemy.  Froi is sent to investigate, and what he finds will change his life forever.  This is personally one of my favorite books of 2012 so far and should be given to any fantasy lover.

Legend by Marie Lu.  November 2011.  9780399256752.  Gr. 8-12.  In my opinion, this is the best dystopian novel to come out since The Hunger Games.  You have the over-controlling government, a rebel who threatens the system, and a girl who discovers the truth about the society in which she lives.  To read more about this title, check out my full review.  Give this to any fans of The Hunger Games and dystopian thrillers.

No Safety in Numbers by Dayna Lorentz.  May 2012.  9780803738737.  Gr. 7-12.  Lorentz debuts with a tension-packed thriller about a biohazard released in a mall.  Told from four teen’s perspectives, readers witness the breakdown of society when people are trapped in a small space in an emergency situation.

Ripper by Stephan Petrucha.  March 2012.  9780399255243.  Gr. 7-12.  Set in New York in 1895, Carver Young, an orphan and aspiring detective, is trying to figure out the identity of his father.  Apprenticed to an ex-Pinkerton agent and with the use of steampunk-like gadgets, Carver uncovers his father’s identity, much to his horror.  To read more about this book, check out my full review.

Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo.  June 2012.  9780805094596.  Gr. 8-12.  In her thrilling debut, Bardugo uses Russian and Slavic myth and culture to create a new world.  Alina Starkov is a cartographer’s assistant in the army of the Ravka nation when a mission goes terribly wrong.  To save her best friend, Alina discovers she has the power to summon light, a rare ability.  Quickly taken in by the magical elite Grisha, Alina tries to navigate her way through the dangerous politics of the order…and discovers she may be more important than she ever realized.

Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater.  October 2011.  9780545224901.  Gr. 9-12.  This Printz Honor winner features a thrilling horse race with monstrous horses and a boy and a girl who have everything to lose.  Sean and Kate (Puck) risk everything when they enter this year’s annual water horse race.  Sean agrees to help Puck, and the two become closer as the race approaches.  But there can only be one winner.  To read more about this fantastic title, check out Tracey’s review.

The Vindico by Wesley King.  June 2012.  9780399256547.  Gr. 8-12.  The League of Heroes and the Vindico have been facing off in the age-old fight of superheroes vs. supervillians.  But the members of the Vindico aren’t as young as they used to be, so they devise an evil plan to kidnap teenagers and teach them to be the next generation of supervillians.  The five teens held captive become friends and plot their escape.  But as they learn more about their captors, they learn that the fight between superheroes vs. supervillians isn’t as black and white as they thought.

Hopefully these titles give you some new ideas of books to give your male readers that they won’t have to hide behind other covers!

Lindsey L.