Tough Streets, Tough Schools, Tough Problems
After by Amy Efaw
In complete denial that she is pregnant, straight-A student and star athlete Devon Davenport leaves her baby in the trash to die, and after the baby is discovered, Devon is accused of attempted murder.
Angry Young Man by Chris Lynch
Eighteen-year-old Robert tries to help his half-brother Xan, a seventeen-year-old misfit, to make better choices as he becomes increasingly attracted to a variety of protesters, anarchists, and the like.
Ball Don’t Lie by Matt de la Pena
Seventeen-year-old Sticky, who has moved in and out of a series of foster homes, lives to play basketball at school and at Lincoln Rec Center in Los Angeles. He has hopes for the pros, but many dangers--including his own past-- threaten to derail him.
Beneath a Meth Moon by Jacqueline Woodson
A young girl uses crystal meth to escape the pain of losing her mother and grandmother in Hurricane Katrina, and then struggles to recover.
Black and White by Paul Volponi
Two star high school basketball players, one black and one white, experience the justice system differently after committing a crime together and getting caught.
Boy 21 by Mathew Quick
Finley, the only white player on his high school's basketball team, is asked to mentor a troubled African American transfer student.
Brooklyn Burning by Steven Brezenoff
Sixteen-year-old Kid loves Felix, a guitarist and junkie who disappear, leaving Kid the prime suspect in an arson investigation.
Burned by Ellen Hopkins
Seventeen-year-old Pattyn, the eldest daughter in a large Mormon family, is sent to her aunt's Nevada ranch for the summer, where she temporarily escapes her alcoholic, abusive father and finds love and acceptance, only to lose everything when she returns home.
Burnout by Adrienne Vrettos
Just months out of rehab, Nan wakes up on the Subway the day after Halloween with "Help Me" scrawled across her torn costume and no idea how she got there.
Clean by Amy Reed
A group of teens in a rehab center focus less on their own problems with drugs and alcohol when they try to help a new member with deeper issues to resolve.
Crank by Ellen Hopkins
When perfect daughter and gifted high school junior Kristina Snow visits her absentee father and meets a boy who gives her crystal meth, she begins a wild ecstatic ride that turns into a struggle through hell for her mind, her soul - her life.
Desert Angel by Charlie Price
In the California Desert, Angel is on the run from the man who abused her, killed her mother and intends to kill her too.
DJ Rising by Love Maia
Sixteen-year-old Marley Diego-Dylan's career as DJ Ices" is skyrocketing, but his mother's heroin addiction keeps dragging him back to earth.
Don't Breath a Word by Holly Cupala
Joy Delamere escapes from her suffocating teenage troubles to the streets where she falls in with a "street family" and finds her inner strengths.
Exit Strategy by Ryan Potter
Seventeen-year-old Zach, his best friend Tank, and Tank's twin sister Sarah are desperate to leave their depressing hometown of Blaine, Michigan after next year's graduation, but plans go awry when Zach uncovers a steroid scandal and falls in love with Sarah.
Exposed by Kimberly Marcus
High school senior Liz, a gifted photographer, can no longer see things clearly after her best friend accuses Liz's older brother of a terrible crime.
Everybody Sees Ants by A.S. King
Overburdened by his parents' bickering and a bully's attacks, Lucky begins dreaming of being with his grandfather, who went missing during the Vietnam War.
The File on Angelyn Stark by Catherine Atkins
Angelyn is trying to get along while keeping a terrible secret about her past, but when one of her teachers offers her support, she doesn't know how to react.
The Girls of No Return by Eric Saldin
A troubled teenage girl attending wilderness school must face the consequences of her complicated friendships with two other girls.
Glass by Ellen Hopkins
In a powerful sequel to Crank, Kristina is determined to manage her addiction to crack in order to keep her newborn child.
Hurricane Song by Paul Volponi
Twelve-year-old Miles Shaw goes to live with his father, a jazz musician, in New Orleans, and together they survive the horrors of Hurricane Katrina in the Superdome, learning about each other and growing closer through their painful experiences.
Identical by Ellen Hopkins
Sixteen-year-old identical twin daughters of a district court judge and a candidate for the United States House of Representatives, Kaeleigh and Raeanne Gardella desperately struggle with secrets that have already torn them and their family apart.
If I Grow Up by Todd Strasser
Growing up in the inner-city projects, DeShawn is reluctantly forced into the gang world by circumstances beyond his control.
Illegal by Bettina Resrepo
Nora, a fifteen-year-old Mexican girl, faces the challenges of being an illegal immigrant in Texas when she and her mother cross the border in search of Nora's father.
Impulse by Ellen Hopkins
Three teens meet at Reno, Nevada's Aspen Springs mental hospital after each has attempted suicide and connect with each other in a way they never have with anyone else in their lives.
In Ecstasy by Kate McCaffrey
When teenagers Mia and Sophie take ecstasy at a party, Mia falls heavily into drug culture while Sophie is sexually assaulted and attempts to hide it from the authorities.
Inexcusable by Chris Lynch
Accused of date rape, high school senior and football player Keir sets out to convince everyone that he’s not that kind of guy.
The Knife that Killed Me by Anthony McGowan
Paul Varderman, a secondary student in an English Catholic School, is a loner until, just as he is becoming friends with "the freaks," the school bully encourages Paul to join his gang and gives him a knife to carry as an incentive.
Jumped by Rita Williams-Garcia
The lives of Leticia, Dominique, and Trina are irrevocably intertwined through the course of one day in an urban high school after Leticia overhears Dominique's plans to beat up Trina and must decide whether or not to get involved.
A Kid from Southie by John Shea
Desperate to help his unemployed mother, Aiden reluctantly begins working for the Irish mob is South Boston.
Leverage by Joshua Cohen
Two student athletes, a gymnast and a football player, form an unlikely alliance when a member of the gymnastics team is brutally assaulted.
Lie by Carolyn Bock
A group of high school seniors conspire to protect eighteen-year-old Jimmy after he bruttaly attacks two Salvadoran immigrants.
Lockdown by Walter Dean Myers
Teenage Reese, serving time at a juvenile detention facility, gets a lesson in making it through hard times from an unlikely friend with a harrowing past.
Perfect by Ellen Hopkins
Four Northern Nevada teens tell in their own voices of their different paths toward perfection and how their goals change when tragedy stricks.
Pull by B.A. Binns
After his father kills his mother, seventeen-year-old David struggles to take care of his two sisters--and himself--while dealing with his grief, guilt, and trying to fit in at a tough new school while hiding his past.
Rage: A Love Story by Julie Anne Peters
At the end of high school, Johanna finally begins dating Reeve, the girl she has loved from afar, but Reeve turns abusive and her seriously troubled life deeply impacts Johanna.
Recovery Road by Blake Nelson
While she is in a rehabilitation facility for drug and alcohol abuse, seventeen-year-old Maddie meets Stewart, who is also in treatment, and they begin a relationship, which they try to maintain after they both get out.
Rooftop by Paul Volponi
Still reeling from seeing police shoot his unarmed cousin to death on the roof of a New York City housing project, seventeen-year-old Clay is dragged into the whirlwind of political manipulation that follows.
Scars by Cheryl Rainfield
Fifteen-year-old Kendra, a budding artist, has not felt safe since she began to recall devastating memories of childhood sexual abuse, especially since she cannot remember her abuser's identity, and she copes with the pressure by cutting herself.
Shine by Lauren Myracle
When her best friend falls victim to a vicious hate crime, sixteen-year-old Cat sets out to discover the culprits in her small North Carolina town.
Smack by Melvin Burgess
After running away from their troubled homes, two English teenagers move in with a group of squatters in the port city of Bristol and try to find ways to support their growing addiction to heroin.
Some Girls Are by Courtney Summers
Regina, a high school senior in the popular--and feared--crowd, suddenly falls out of favor and becomes the object of the same sort of vicious bullying that she used to inflict on others, until she finds solace with one of her former victims.
Something Like Hope by Shawn Goodman
Shavonne, a fierce, desperate seventeen year-old in juvenile lockup, wants to turn her life around before her eighteenth birthday, but corrupt guards, out-of-control girls, and shadows from her past make her task seem impossible.
Stay with Me by Paul Griffen
When Mack, a high-school drop-out and genius with dogs, lands in prison, he pushes away the girl he loves, and only a pit-bull can keep them together.
Street Pharm by Allison Van Diepen
Ty, the number one dealer on the streets, has developed smarts, skills, and mad discipline. But when life turns ugly, he’s got to rethink his whole strategy if he is to survive.
Surf Mules by G. Neri
When a tragic accident and sudden financial woes cause recent high school graduate Logan to question plans for his future, he agrees to make a road trip with his best friend and surfing buddy, Z-boy, transporting marijuana from southern California to Orlando, Florida.
Trafficked by Kim Purcell
A seventeen-year-old Moldovan girl whose parents have been killed is brought to the United States to work as a slave for a family in Los Angeles.
Tricks by Ellen Hopkins
Written in free verse, explores how three teenagers try to cope with the consequences of their mother's addiction to crystal meth and its effects on their lives.
Willow by Julia Hoban
Sixteen-year-old Willow, who was driving the car that killed both of her parents, copes with the pain and guilt by cutting herself, until she meets a smart and sensitive boy who is determined to help her stop.
Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson
Eighteen-year-old Lia comes to terms with her best friend's death from anorexia as she struggles with the same disorder.
Wrecked by E.R. Frank
After a car accident seriously injures her best friend and kills her brother's girlfriend, sixteen-year-old Anna tries to cope with her guilt and grief, while learning some truths about her family and herself.