Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Tuesday Top Ten: Best Books that tackle Tough issues (#16)

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and The Bookish.

This week's theme is the Best Books that tackle quite TOUGH issues either cultural, political etc.
1. Speak - Laurie Halse Andersen - For me, Laurie Halse Andersen is the queen of writing for young adults about teenage issues, however, Speak has always stayed with me since I read it all those years ago, completely unaware about what it would be about. There is a certain sadness in this book that other 'Tough Issue' books don't contain and I think this is down to the leading lady, Melina, and Halse Andersen, herself. Speak is a must read for anyone, teenage or adult.

2. Wintergirls - Laurie Halse Andersen - I have read quite a few anorexic books, it is a topic I find interesting and like to look into it, especially as I have been labelled it myself before because of my natural thinness (although, I eat for about 3 people). Wintergirls is much more haunting I think compared to Speak as it's written in prose and very lyrical and mysterious. There is lots of weird and wonderful imagery that helps you get into the mind of an anorexic girl. So much so, that for a week, I felt fat and ugly constantly myself and I think it was down to this book. You experience being an anorexic. 
3. Noughts and Crosses - Malorie Blackman - Noughts and Crosses, I think, deals with racism the best to any other racism tackling novel I have read before. This time it is reversed where being white is a bad thing where black is good. This just shows that it is wrong whichever way, and can happen at anytime, any point and with anyone, regardless of race.

4. The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas - John Boyne - I think this book teaches the lesson about how what the Nazis did was wrong and shouldn't in theory happen again (however, it kind of has). It also shows how unaware people can be about things happening around them and so close to them.
An example. The other day, I received an email from my now old school telling me that there is a kidnapper in my area that tries to kidnap teenage girls by the river and tried to kidnap a 9 year-old boy in a playground. It's things like this that kind of open our eyes to those around us and I know that I am now more careful out and about especially on my own, which I often am, now it's summer holidays. We need to look around us more, I think. 

5. Dreamland - Sarah Dessen - Abuse is something I think all people treat as a taboo subject. No-one wants to talk about it, as it is something maybe everyone may experience at some point, either a hit on the arm or a slap around the face. Dreamland, I think, tackles it so well and makes it stand out a lot. For me, it isn't one of Sarah Dessen's best books but it is the most hard hitting and one that people I think could be shocked by after reading. It really does hit home a bit. This may be why it's banned in England. I got my copy in the US. 

6. Someone Like You - Sarah Dessen - Someone Like You deals with teenage pregnancies and teenage relationships, and the pressure for that one thing that worries all girls - sex. For girls, it means more, more things can happen that for a guy - it's something that needs to happen at the right time and with the right feeling. Sadly, this book deals with losing a friend early too, something some people in the world right now will be dealing with after the terrible Norway Attacks and the death of Amy Winehouse who was aged 27. These last few days have especially made me more aware of my life and how I want to live it. Life is something we take for granted really and I think that is shown in this book. Life is taken for granted and suddenly, it stops and we can't have all those good times again. It is also taken for granted how we live it, like having a baby early could ruin it and for granted of how easily babies can form and how they can take over our lives. This book is a must on the 'Tough Issue' books - it deals with these things and much much more.

*I shall not be doing a Tuesday Top Ten next week as I am on holiday, will be starting it again, though the week after on the 9th August


  1. Great choices. Have a lovely vacation.

  2. Great choices! I've read all of these except Naughts and Crosses so I'll be sure to check that one out soon.

    Here's my list: http://bit.ly/qJiozA

  3. It's interesting how some authors like Dessen and Anderson favor the tough issues. Thanks for the list!

  4. Noughts and Crosses is a good book, there's a whole series actually, I think four books.

    Yeah it is interesting I guess, but then if they feel like they can specialise in that and know what to write about that area, might as well stay with it! :)

  5. I'm currently reading Someone Like You. I think Sarah Dessen does a wonderful job of dealing with issues teenagers face everyday in their lives.

  6. I resolve to read some Sarah Dessen this summer!!!!!

    Please visit my blog and sign up for my first Giveaway!


  7. You listed some very tough reads.

    Here is my Top Ten post!

  8. Yes read Sarah Dessen, she is a must!

    Okay, will have a look at both links.


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