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What Science Fiction would you recommend kids read?

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I'm trying to put together a list of recommended reading of Science Fiction only (not fantasy) for children and another list for YA. I'm thinking the cut off here is about 13 years old. With Science Fiction it's harder to make the cut off, because there are the classics, of course, that we may have read at 11 and 12 that were for adults.

Anyway, I've made two lists. I haven't read everything in the lists so if you see something I've included and it's in Children's when it should be YA, or it's really fantasy, or you wouldn't recommend it to your dog for breakfast, then can you let me know? Also if I have missed a really great work that you would recommend, let me know also?

Also I've gone with the first book in a series, only.

CHILDREN'S:

Grimsdon - Abela, Deborah
The Monster Garden – Alcock, Vivien
Anna to the Infinite Power – Ames, Mildred
Zack Proton – Anderson, Brian
Attack of the Fluffy Bunnies – Beaty, Andrea
Spider Lies – Banyard, Jen
Spacer and Rat – Bechard, Margaret
Star Hatchling – Bechard, Margaret
The Mystery Machine – Brennan, Herbie
The Rise of Renegade X – Campbell, Chelsea M
A Cage of Butterflies – Caswell, Brian
Godzilla at World's End – Cerasini, Marc A
The White Mountains – Christopher, John
Aliens on Vacation – Barrett Smith, Clete
I Left my Sneakers in Dimension X – Coville, Bruce
Space Brat 2: Blork's Evil Twin – Coville, Bruce
The Search for WondLa – De Terlizzi, Tony
Alien Game – Dexter, Catherine
My Stepfather Shrank! - Dillion, Barbara
The City of Ember – DuPrau, Jeanne
Circus Galacticus – Fagan, Deva
The Ear, The Eye, and the Arm – Farmer, Nancy
The Tar-Aiym Krang – Foster, Alan Dean
Singing the Dogstar Blues – Goodman, Alison
Hal Junior – Haynes, Simon
Among the Hidden – Haddix, Margaret Peterson
Found – Haddix, Margaret Peterson
Running Out of Time – Haddix, Margaret Peterson
Have Space Suit, Will Travel – Heinlein, Robert
Escape from Earth – Hess, Debra
Winds of Mars – Hoover, HW
Maphead: The Return – Howarth, Lesley
The Iron Man – Hughes, Ted
Sleepers, Wake – Jacobs, Paul Samuel
Geeks, Girls, and Secret Identities – Jung, Mike
Taronga – Kelleher, Victor
Alien Secrets – Klause, Annette Curtis
A Wrinkle in Time – L'Engle, Madeleine
Children of the Dust – Lawrence, Louise
Dancing with an Alien – Logue, Mary
The Giver – Lowery, Lois
Barbary – McIntyre, Vonda
Eye of the Storm – Messner, Kate
The Great Interactive Dream Machine – Peck, Richard
Adventures of a Cat-Whiskered Girl – Pinkwater, Daniel
Ned Feldman, Space Pirate – Pinkwater, Daniel Manus
Alan Mendelsohn, The Boy From Mars – Pinkwater, Daniel Manus
Tria and the Great Star Rescue – Rector, Rebecca Kraft
Larklight – Reeve, Phillip
The True Meaning of Smekday – Rex, Adam
Galex-Arena – Rubenstein, Gillian
Space Demons – Rubinstein, Gillian
Stinker from Space – Service, Pamela
Downsiders – Shusterman, Neal
The Dark Side of Nowhere – Shusterman, Neal
The Hunchback Assignments – Slade, Arthur
The Night the Heads Came – Sleater, William
When You Reach Me – Stead, Rebecca
The Boy at the End of the World – van Eekhout, Greg
On the Blue Comet – Wells, Rosemary
The Seer – Wisler, G Clifton
Alien Invasion and Other Inconveniences – Yansky, Brian



YA:

Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy – Adams, Douglas
Things We Didn't See Coming – Amsterdam, Steve
Feed – Anderson, MT
Foundation – Asimov, Isaac
Genesis – Beckett, Bernard
The Gardener – Bodeen, SA
Dandelion Wine – Bradbury, Ray
Fahrenheit 451 – Bradbury, Ray
Something Wicked This Way Comes – Bradbury, Ray
Parable of the Talents - Butler, Octavia
Ender's Game – Card, Orson Scott
Hunger Games – Collins, Suzanne
The Death Cure – Dashner, James
Burn Bright – de Pierres, Marianne
Do Andriods Dream of Electric Sheep – Dick, PK
Eva – Dickinson, Peter
Little Brother – Doctorow, Cory
A Boy and his Dog – Ellison, Harlan
Journey Between Worlds – Engdahl, Sylvia
Enchantress from the Stars – Engdahl, Sylvia
House of the Scorpion – Farmer, Nancy
The Organ Grinder – Fitzhugh, Bill
Black Hole Sun – Gill, David Macinnis
Waiting for the End of the World – Harding, Lee
The Stainless Steel Rat – Harrison, Harry
Hal Spacejock – Haynes, Simon
Citizen of the Galaxy – Heinlein, Robert
The Red Planet – Heinlein, Robert
The Star Beast – Heinlein, Robert
Starman Jones – Heinlein, Robert
Tunnel in the Sky – Heinlein, Robert
The Rolling Stones – Heinlein, Robert
Dune – Herbert, Frank
Brave New World – Huxley, Aldous
Insignia – Kincaid, SJ
Beggars in Spain – Kress, Nancy
Steal Across the Sky – Kress, Nancy
A Ring of Endless Light – L'Engle, Madeleine
Girl in Landscape – Letham, Jonathan
The Ship Who Sang – McCaffrey, Anne
Black Glass – Mundell, Meg
The Knife of Never Letting Go – Ness, Patrick
Ringworld – Niven, Larry
A Confusion of Princes – Nix, Garth
Moon of Three Rings – Norton, Andre
The Stars are Ours – Norton, Andre
Birthmarked – O'Brien, Caragh M
Z for Zachariah – O'Brien, Robert
1984 – Orwell, George
Emergence – Palmer, David
Rite of Passage – Panshin, Alexei
The Adoration of Jenna Fox – Pearson, Mary E
Life As We Knew It – Pfeffer, Susan Beth
Starters – Price, Lissa
Mortal Engines – Reeve, Philip
Across the Universe – Revis, Beth
How I Live Now – Rosoff, Meg
Divergent – Roth, Veronica
Tankborn - Sandler, Karen
Wake – Sawyer, Robert J
Crossover – Shepherd, Joel
Unwind – Shusterman, Neal
Interstellar Pig – Sleator, William
Inside Out – Snyder, Maria V
Snowcrash – Stephenson, Neal
The Sea and the Summer – Turner, George
An Audience for Einstein – Wakely, Mark
Uglies – Westerfeld, Scott
The Chrysalids – Wyndham, John
Cat's Cradle – Vonnegut, Kurt
Welcome to the Monkey House – Vonnegut, Kurt

(this list magically grows...)
#1 - July 09, 2012, 06:09 PM
« Last Edit: July 12, 2012, 06:09 PM by macdibble »

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Great list!  One of my old favorites is Anne McCaffrey's YA novel, The Ship Who Sang.  It's got action, adventure, romance -- and examines deeper questions about love, sacrifice, and what it means to be a human being.  My older brother gave it to me many years ago, one of his faves, a good read for boys or girls.   
#2 - July 09, 2012, 06:31 PM
Ten Clever Ninjas (picture book, Clear Fork Publishing, 2019)
Butterfly Girl (middle grade novel, Clear Fork Publishing, 2019)

Twitter: @kidlitSarah

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 :thankyou

Thanks! That's for the YA list?
#3 - July 09, 2012, 06:39 PM
« Last Edit: July 09, 2012, 06:48 PM by macdibble »

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You have The White Mountains and The Tripods Trilogy on both lists - intentional? (The White Mountains is the first book of the trilogy if I recall correctly.)

I'd add Dandelion Wine and maybe Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury to the MG list (or at least the YA list). Also The True Meaning of Smekday (Adam Rex) to the MG list.

And David may want to weigh in, but isn't Black Hole Sun pretty firmly YA?

Also for YA: How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff
#4 - July 09, 2012, 06:49 PM
The Farwalker Trilogy
The Humming of Numbers
Reality Leak

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Some great additional middle-grade science fiction:

The True Meaning of Smekday by Adam Rex
The Boy at the End of the World by Greg van Eekhout
Circus Galacticus by Deva Fagan

For YA you seem to have a lot of adult titles, which means you could probably include hundreds more books. For YA, I think you definitely need:

The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness (first of the Chaos Walking series)
House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer
#5 - July 09, 2012, 06:52 PM
Above World, 2/2012, Candlewick
Mirage (Book 2), 3/2013
Horizon (Book 3), 4/2014

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You have The White Mountains and The Tripods Trilogy on both lists - intentional? (The White Mountains is the first book of the trilogy if I recall correctly.)

I'd add Dandelion Wine and maybe Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury to the MG list (or at least the YA list). Also The True Meaning of Smekday (Adam Rex) to the MG list.

And David may want to weigh in, but isn't Black Hole Sun pretty firmly YA?

Also for YA: How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff

Thank you!  No, any double ups on both lists are me bungling my way through other people's recommended reading lists late last night.

I think the Tripod Trilogy came out in one whole book later which is probably why I doubled up. You'd put it in YA?
#6 - July 09, 2012, 07:01 PM

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You'd put it in YA?

Nah. Totally MG.
#7 - July 09, 2012, 07:02 PM
The Farwalker Trilogy
The Humming of Numbers
Reality Leak

www.jonisensel.com

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Some great additional middle-grade science fiction:


For YA you seem to have a lot of adult titles, which means you could probably include hundreds more books.


Yeah, it's hard to exclude adult titles from YA, especially the classics, especially the ones that have a sense of coming of age, or a sense of a societal coming of age, or dire warnings and predictions.
#8 - July 09, 2012, 07:13 PM

Riss

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Should definitely include Insignia by SJ Kincaid. It's a new release but it has lots of interesting ideas and it's a fun read (YA).

There's always books like Citizen of the Galaxy by Robert Heinlein that could possibly go under YA?

Best of luck!
#9 - July 09, 2012, 07:42 PM

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Thank you!
#10 - July 09, 2012, 08:58 PM

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Do you have any Piers Anthony on the list? It's a long, long time since I read any, so I'm not sure what titles should go up at all, much less whether they'd be MG or YA.
#11 - July 10, 2012, 06:06 AM

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Isaac Asimov?
#12 - July 10, 2012, 06:40 AM

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I, Robot for YA? I thought about it. Or a short story collection? Wondering which of his works is about a coming of age. Any ideas what might appeal to YA?
#13 - July 10, 2012, 06:48 AM
« Last Edit: July 10, 2012, 06:50 AM by macdibble »

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Yes, The Ship Who Sang is YA.  It's about a girl who was born with a body that will not survive, but like other similar infants, she is tested and her brain is deemed superior and worthy of implanting in a sleek intergalactic scout ship.  She and others like her are trained for many years to become the "brain" to match a human "brawn" pilot. She is like Spock, not ruled by emotions, but that doesn't mean she doesn't have emotions.  "Gifted with the voice of an angel and being virtually indestructible, Helva XH-834 anticipated...daring adventures and endless excitement, beyond the wildest dreams of mere mortals.  Then one day she fell in love..."

It has believable details, and is totally engaging and very moving.
#14 - July 10, 2012, 06:49 AM
Ten Clever Ninjas (picture book, Clear Fork Publishing, 2019)
Butterfly Girl (middle grade novel, Clear Fork Publishing, 2019)

Twitter: @kidlitSarah

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Sounds wonderful!
#15 - July 10, 2012, 06:52 AM

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On the children's side, I'd add The Iron Man by Ted Hughes

Riss, Citizen of the Galaxy is good. I'd pick Have Spacesuit Will Travel and The Red Planet  by Heinlein as favorites too.
The Tar-Aiym Krang (Pip & Flinx Series) by Alan Dean Foster, and
Journey Between Worlds and Enchantress from the Stars (Newbery Honor in the early 70s) by Sylvia Engdahl
 
#16 - July 10, 2012, 06:55 AM
« Last Edit: July 10, 2012, 01:07 PM by mollymom103 »
Plumb Crazy (Swoon Romance, 2014)
Big Fuzzy Coat (MeeGenius!)
Rembrandt and the Boy Who Drew Dogs (Barron's)

www.mollyblaisdell.blogspot.com

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There are several of Heinlein's juveniles you could add--The Star Beast, Starman Jones, Tunnel in the Sky, The Rolling Stones.  You could also probably add Asimov's Foundation Trilogy to the YA list--and the third book in the trilogy has a 14-15 year old protagonist.  Also for the YA list would be Alexei Panshin's Rite of Passage, which is a wonderful book.
#17 - July 10, 2012, 07:42 AM
The Leland Sisters series: Courtship and Curses, Bewitching Season, Betraying Season (Holt BYR/Macmillan)
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www.nineteenteen.com

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What a great list!!

What about the Chrysalids by John Wyndham? I don't see it on your list, but might have missed it.

(love Citizen of the Galaxy, read that book over and over as a teen)

How about Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy?

and I haven't read them, but Nathan Bransford has a MG series out now, Jacob Wunderbar and the Cosmic Space Kapow is the first one.

Bitterwood by James Maxey was pretty cool, but it's sort of a fantasy/sci fi hybrid. I've only read the first one.

I was also a big fan of the Stainless Steel Rat by Harry Harrison when I was a teen.
#18 - July 10, 2012, 08:50 AM
THIS LITTLE PIGGY (AN OWNER'S MANUAL), Aladdin PIX June 2017 :pigsnort
KUNG POW CHICKEN 1-4, Scholastic 2014 :chicken

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Should Have Space Suit, Will Travel be in MG instead of YA? I'm just thinking it's so old it's probably pretty tame beside today's YA.
#19 - July 10, 2012, 10:32 AM

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Neal Shusterman's Unwind is remarkable. It's also disturbing, so I'd only recommend it for older teens.
#20 - July 10, 2012, 07:34 PM
DUCKWORTH, THE DIFFICULT CHILD (Atheneum, 2019)
INCOGNOLIO (Janx Press, 2017)
CRASHING EDEN  (Solstice, 2012)
OTTO GROWS DOWN (Sterling, 2009)

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SF is meant to be disturbing in a Sit-up-and-take-notice-this-stuff-could-happen kinda way.

Thank you! Everyone.

I thought I put The Chrysalids in... I know I looked at it... I can't see it either! HHGG is there, of course.

It's hard to place some things, isn't it? I'm trying to focus on the RECOMMEND aspect of it. It may be a classic for adults but if there is nothing to recommend it to teenagers today, ie. it is outdated or superseded by some other work on the same topic, or deals largely with adult issues and there is no coming of age aspect or younger protagonists, or coming of age of a society dealing with issue relevant to today's society (corporate control, pollution, overpopulation, extinction etc), then maybe it shouldn't be recommended to kids today... then again, SF has its own history... and it's good to know about the work of the 1950s.
#21 - July 11, 2012, 12:53 AM

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I'm almost finished reading Mike Jung's GEEKS, GIRLS, AND SECRET IDENTITIES, and it's a delight--page-turning action with heart. Oh, and lots of robots and inventions and cool stuff like that. :)
#22 - July 11, 2012, 03:22 AM
FLYING THE DRAGON (Charlesbridge, 2012)
A LONG PITCH HOME (Charlesbridge, 2016)

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How did you get that? It says due out 1st of October 2012!
#23 - July 11, 2012, 04:24 AM

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Neal Shusterman's Unwind is remarkable. It's also disturbing, so I'd only recommend it for older teens.

Oooh, getting rid of naughty teens! Yeah that could happen. Very disturbing. I would've been dead 100 times over if my parents had that option! :o
#24 - July 11, 2012, 04:26 AM

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Thanks everyone for your help with this list. Some books were recommended over and over again, so I have extended my reading list too!
#25 - July 11, 2012, 04:41 AM

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How did you get that? It says due out 1st of October 2012!

ARCs were out at the last ALA in June, but Mike and I are part of the same group blog, Emus Debuts (link is in my signature below this post), and we read each others' ARCs before we celebrate their release. I'm lucky, I know. :)
#26 - July 11, 2012, 05:32 AM
FLYING THE DRAGON (Charlesbridge, 2012)
A LONG PITCH HOME (Charlesbridge, 2016)

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Very lucky!

Now the list is magically in alphabetical by author last name so you can see if your favourite author has been recommended.
#27 - July 11, 2012, 06:27 AM

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I think The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary Pearson is really YA rather than children's. And City of Ember I'd actually consider to be children's and not YA. These are great lists! I love just looking through them.
#28 - July 12, 2012, 10:09 AM

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YA

Tankborn, by Karen Sandler
Parable of the Talents, Octavia Butler (among others)
#29 - July 12, 2012, 11:00 AM
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THIS OR THAT, Tilbury House, 2021
THE BOOK DRAGON, Sterling, 2018
MIRA FORECASTS THE FUTURE, Sterling, 2016

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Oooh, thank you, thank you.

It's quite confusing to place the ones I haven't read. And now I realise there are far too many, I NEED to read.

Everyone was talking about Tankborn last year, and I'm so glad you've found me an Octavia Butler title.

#30 - July 12, 2012, 05:56 PM

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