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    Every Millennial Has Read At Least One Of These Young Adult Books

    From John Green to Sarah Dessen.

    There are certain books millennials seem to know by heart. They defined our youth, shaped our opinions at the time, and let us live alternative lives.

    NBC / Hulu / Via

    These are the Young Adult books every millennial has read...and if you haven't, you should probably read them too. 

    1. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

    Movie cover edition of The Perks of Being a Wallflower
    Turtleback Books; Bound for Schools & Libraries ed. edition (

    What it's about: Set in the '90s, Perks follows wallflower Charlie as he navigates high school, past trauma, and finds true, wonderful friends. 

    2. Paper Towns by John Green

    Book cover of Paper Towns by John Green; Photo of a road map with a red pin in the center
    Penguin Books

    What it's about: Protagonist Quentin becomes enamored by next-door neighbor Margot and, after she disappears, follows the clues she left. Qith the help of his friends, he embarks on a mission to find her. 

    3. The Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer

    Book cover for Twilight; shows pale hands holding a red apple
    Little, Brown and Company

    What it's about: Bella is new to Forks, Washington, and falls head over heels for a mysterious student (Edward) who happens to be a vampire. 

    4. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

    Book cover for The Hunger Games
    Scholastic Corporation

    What it's about: Set in the terrifying dystopian world of Panem, 16-year-old Katniss Everdeen must fight for her life after she is sent to the arena in a fight to the death. 

    5. The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen

    Book cover for The Truth About Forever; cover shows a girl holding a pink flower

    What it's about: Macy is a typical sheltered teenager, resigned to spend a summer working at the library. With her boyfriend off at Brain Camp, she isn't left with much to do, until she stumbles upon a group of friends, a local catering crew, that changes the course of her summer and her life. 

    6. Looking for Alaska by John Green

    Book cover of Looking for Alaska
    Penguin Books

    What it's about: Miles is looking for his "Great Perhaps," and thinks he can find it at his new boarding school and potentially with his new friend, Alaska. 

    7. Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

    Red book cover with illustration of a headless guy with the book title in a speech text bubble above
    Balzer + Bray

    What it's about: Sixteen-year-old Simon hasn't exactly come out, to anyone, and when someone threatens to leak an email correspondence between him and his online crush, he must figure out who's behind the emails before his secret is exposed. 

    8. The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord

    Depiction of a couple watching the sunset with book title text atop

    What it's about: Paige Hancock has a plan. Still processing the death of her first boyfriend, she's set on convincing everyone she's OK — by finding a new boyfriend and joining the drama club. Alas, life has other plans (and friends) in store for her, and it leads her in unexpected, interesting directions. 

    9. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

    Mint green book cover with FANGIRL in red and illustrations of main characters
    St. Martin's Griffin

    What it's about: Cath is obsessed with Simon Snow. About to head off to college with her twin sister, Wren, she isn't sure of anything just yet. When Wren tells her she doesn't want to be roommates, Cath is thrown for a loop and must navigate her freshman year on new terms. Will she find love? Will she continue her fanfiction? Will she find herself? It's all up in the air. 

    10. To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han

    book cover of a teenage girl writing a letter in bed
    Simon & Schuster

    What it's about: Lara Jean keeps love letters to all her crushes, and one day, they're mysteriously out there. To keep her past crushes off her back, she sets up a fake dating scenario with Peter, and lovable, hysterical, heartwarming chaos ensues. 

    11. The Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling

    Book cover of Harry Potter and The Sorcerer's Stone

    What it's about: Harry is a wizard; he just doesn't know it quite yet. He is sent to a magical training school, Hogwarts, to harness his powers, and here he learns that he must help keep evil forces at bay. 

    12. I'd Tell You I Love You, But Then I'd Have to Kill You by Ally Carter

    Book cover for I'd Tell You I Love You, But Then I'd Have To Kill You; shows a teen girl in a sweater vest and plaid skirt
    Hyperion Books for Children

    Cammie Morgan is a teenage super spy attending the Gallagher Academy, a special school training young girls to kill, run by her mom, of course. Cammie has to navigate growing up while rappelling down buildings and is forced to lie to her civilian crush about who she is. It's intense.  

    13. Amy and Roger's Epic Detour by Morgan Matson

    Book cover of two teens holding hands across a road with title text atop
    Simon and Schuster

    What it's about: Having recently faced the death of her father, Amy's mom decides the family must now move cross country to Connecticut. Tasked with getting there herself, she enlists family friend Roger to help. Out on the road, she finds love and friendship, and learns how to live again.

    14. The Clique Series by Lisi Harrison

    The Clique book cover: plaid background with group of girls gossiping at the top
    Little, Brown

    What it's about: The Clique follows Massie Block, her group of friends, and new-to-town Claire Lyons as they attend their elite private school in upstate New York and live their luxurious lives. The extensive series is sassy and ridiculous and filled with brand names. 

    15. Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

    Book cover featuring a girl sitting on a swing with title text to the right----
    Penguin Books

    What it's about: Clay Jensen returns home one day to a mysterious package waiting on his doorstep. It's from his classmate Hannah Baker, except Hannah Baker is dead. Inside, he finds 13 audio tapes explaining why she did it. Clay hears firsthand about her pain and goes on a life-changing journey in the course of one night. 

    16. Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist by David Levithan and Rachel Cohn

    Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers

    What it's about: Nick loves music. So does Norah. They have nothing in common except that they both really want to find this secret show in New York. It turns into a roller coaster of a date. 

    17. If I Stay by Gayle Forman

    Blue background with bare tree and pink flower in center; title text at top of cover
    Dutton Books for Young Readers

    What it's about: Seventeen-year-old Mia goes for a drive with her family and doesn't remember anything else. She learns there's been a car crash. As Mia floats above her own body, observing everything, and has to make an important decision — should she stay, or should she go? 

    18. I'll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson

    Title text in bold black print with multicolored sun ray illustrations surrounding it
    Dial Books

    What it's about: Jude and Noah grew up inseparable, yet years later they're barely speaking to each other. Told in alternating points of view — Jude in the present and Noah years before — readers are left to piece together what happened. The vibrant, lyrical novel will have you laughing, crying, and feeling everything in between. 

    19. Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver

    Cover shows a close up shot of a girl with title text in white over her face

    What it's about: Samantha Kingston has it all. She's looking forward to Cupid's Day at school, a chance to show off her popularity with roses and valentines. It's a good day until she dies later that night...only to wake up the next morning and relive the same day seven times in a row. Samantha must figure out how even the smallest of choices impact her life. 

    20. Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz

    Book cover shows a night sky, an open field and a red pickup truck with white title text and illustrations surrounding it
    Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

    What it's about: Aristotle and Dante have nothing in common, except they're both loners. After a chance meeting at the pool one summer, the pair grow closer, discovering themselves and the kind of people they want to become. 

    Have you read any of these? What were your favorite books growing up? LMK below.

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