Friday, August 31, 2012

Crushing on the Romance Section

The kids have been back for almost two weeks and I FINALLY finished my first visit with each class. Hooray! It was fun to talk books with the kids and hear about their summer reads and what they can't wait to read this year. Now that each class has had an opportunity to come in and check out books, I can see what is in high demand. When I genriefied my fiction at the end of the year, my main motive was to make books easier to find for my students, but I never expected this arrangement to help me so much in creating a book order. My Thriller and Humor areas are almost empty, but nothing compares to this sad, lonely and barren Romance section. Untitled
I assure you these shelves were completely full on the first day of school. So full that I had books sitting on top of rows. These empty sheves tells me I have some work to do to meet the demands of my girls.
I've been hard at work this afternoon searching through Goodreads, Amazon, Follett, and some of my favorite book bloggers to find suggestions to add to this section.
Those of you who are also in middle school know how hard this is. We want beautiful covers, stories mature enough to keep the girls interested and engaged, but not too mature or sexy. We need sweet, innocent crush stories for our sixth graders and emotional drama for our eighth graders. I hope I've hit the mark with these titles.

This is what I plan to order in alphabetical order:
1. Beauty and the Beast: the Only One Who Didn't Run Away by Wendy Mass
2. Boy Crazy by Hailey Abbott
3. Breathing by Cheryl Renee Herbsman
4. The Cupcake Queen by Heather Hepler
5. Freshman Year and other Unnatural Disasters by Meredith Zietlin
6. Friend Is Not a Verb by Daniel Ehrenhaft
7. Geek Magnet by Kieran Scott
8. In Your Room by Jordanna Frailberg
9. Keep Holding On by Susane Colasanti
10. Love? Maybe by Heather Hepler
11. Perfect You by Elizabeth Scott
12. Pizza, Love and Other Stuff That Made Me Famous by Kathryn Williams
13. Prada & Prejudice by Amanda Hubbard
14. Rapunzel: The One With All the Hair by Wendy Mass
15. Rumors From the Boys Room by Rose Cooper
16. Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson
17. Secrets from the Sleeping Bag by Rose Cooper
18. The Selection by Kiera Cass (2 copies)
19. Shooting Stars by Allison Rushby
20. Shug by Jenny Han
21. Sleepaway Girls by Jen Calonita
22. Sleeping Beauty: The One Who Took the Really Long Nap by Wendy Mass
23. So Much Closer by Susane Colasanti
24. Throwing Like a Girl by Weezie Kerr Mackey
25. Waiting by Carol Lynch Williams
26. What Would Emma Do? by Eileen Cook
27. You Are Here by Jennifer Smith

Here are a few titles that have been popular, I've already ordered because I read and liked them or they are already on hold many times over this year:
The Encyclopedia of Me by Karen Rivers
Pinned by Sharon Flake
Getting Over Garrett Delaney by Abby McDonald
Drama by Raina Telgemeier
I Heart You, You Haunt Me by Lisa Schroder
Unearthly by Cynthia Hand
You Wish by Mandy Hubbard
Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
The Boy Project by Kami Kinard
The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han
Sean Griswold's Head by Lindsey Leavitt
Matched by Ally Condie
Delirium by Lauren Oliver
If I Stay by Gayle Forman
Lots of Sarah Dessen and Nicholas Sparks and the usual suspects, Twilight series, Shiver series, etc.

What romance novels would you recommend for middle school? What are your popular romance titles?


  1. To answer your question, The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. And a whole lot of Sarah Dessen. And that's about it. Perhaps it's because I haven't seen 8th grade yet, but romance is not a very popular section at my library. Personally, I like the Perfect Chemistry series by Simone Elkeles, but it may be too sexy for the younger range. I also just read The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith, and it was an adventure of a romance - similar to Anna and the French Kiss.

  2. I loved Perfect Chemistry, but I'm not quite comfortable putting that one on the shelf. Perhaps in the back room for some of my mature readers. The same with The Fault in Our Stars -- it's just so intense for most of my kids.

    I also struggle with getting things just right for my new 6th grade girls -- they're just so innocent still! I do like to recommend the "Secrets of My Hollywood Life" series, as well as books by Allie Carter.

    It's the same conundrum with sports books for the boys... I buy everything I can find that's appropriate and interesting, but we always NEED more MG football books!

  3. Delirium by Lauren Oliver was an excellent dystopia romance but I loved Before I Fall so much more by that author which definitely has some romance in it as well. It was a little mature for my middle school library.

    Some I would recommend for middle school and up:

    Wicked Lovely (especially for girls looking for books like Twilight)
    Divergent (another dystopian)
    Bloody Jack (girl power/historical fiction)
    literally anything by John Green besides The Fault in Our Stars (An Abundance of Katherines, Looking for Alaska, or Paper Towns)
    and I recently added for my 7th and 8th graders: A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs which was written in 1917, is a really cute romance story with Sci Fi elements and was recently made into a Disney film named John Carter.

  4. Great recommendations! I have a bunch to add to my own TBR pile now, as well as ideas for my 6th grade daughter. Thank you, and I look forward to more lists like this!