This genre includes any type of novel with a protagonist in the 12 to 16 age range that speaks to the concerns of teenagers.
Currently, J.K. Rowling and her amazing Harry Potter (Scholastic Press) books are dominating the field. Rowling’s accomplishment — a truly universal story, brimming with magic and fantasy as well as likable characters that readers identify with — is an amazing feat. Watch out for all the Harry Potter wannabes in the coming year.
Success stories in this genre share many of the qualities evident in the Harry Potter books: a memorable voice (J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye, Little Brown, 1951), believable characters (Golding’s Lord of the Flies, Perigee, 1959), and a willingness to write about the disturbing subjects that preoccupy teens and preteens (Are You There God, It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume, Dell Yearling, 1972, or Holes by Louis Sachar, FSG, 1998).