If you don’t really like fantasy, science fiction, or supernatural stuff, then here’s a list of more realistic fiction. Boys, girls, parents, sports, school, music, friends, anxieties, family — real things that could plausibly be experienced by real people! Here are 31 of our faves.

Updated May 2020

  1. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, Sherman Alexie
  2. The Haters, Jesse Andrews
  3. Wintergirls, Laurie Halse Anderson
  4. Floored, Sara Barnard
  5. The Boy in the Olive Grove, Fleur Beale
  6. The Bunker Diary, Kevin Brooks
  7. Dying to Know You, Aidan Chambers
  8. The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Stephen Chbosky
  9. Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist, Rachel Cohn and David Levithan
  10. I Wish You All the Best, Mason Deaver
  11. Sanctuary, Kate De Goldi
  12. Just Listen: A Novel, Sarah Dessen
  13. Alex, Tessa Duder
  14. Wildman, J. C. Geiger
  15. The Fault in our Stars, John Green
  16. The Summer I Turned Pretty, Jenny Han
  17. Kick the Moon, Muhammad Khan
  18. Will Grayson, Will Grayson, David Levithan and John Green
  19. Looking for Alibrandi, Melina Marchetta
  20. Analee, In Real Life, Janelle Milanes
  21. Feeling Sorry for Celia, Jaclyn Moriarty
  22. All the Right Stuff, Walter Dean Myles
  23. Recovery Road, Blake Nelson
  24. Hatchet, Gary Paulsen
  25. Lola and the Boy Next Door, Stephanie Perkins
  26. How to Disappear, Sharon Huss Roat
  27. Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe, Benjamin Alire Sáenz
  28. Stargirl, Jerry Spinelli
  29. The Wave, Todd Strasser
  30. The List, Siobhan Vivian
  31. Bridge of Clay, Markus Zusak