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Since 1998 the American Library Association (ALA) has picked the top 10 adult books for teens. Here's a selection.

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  Cover Art: Candyfreak: a Journey Through the Chocolate Underbelly of America Almond, Steve
Candyfreak: a Journey Through the Chocolate Underbelly of America
After confessing to being a lifelong chocoholic, the aptly named Almond (creative writing, Boston College) traces the history and bittersweet business practices of the companies producing those addictive candy bars. He includes relevant Web sites. [2005 Winner]
2004
Adult Nonfiction Book
  Cover Art: One Shot at Forever : a Small Town an Unlikely Coach and a Magical Baseball Season Ballard, Chris.
One Shot at Forever : a Small Town an Unlikely Coach and a Magical Baseball Season
In 1971, a small-town high school baseball team from rural Illinois playing with hand-me-down uniforms and peace signs on their hats defied convention and the odds. Led by an English teacher with no coaching experience, the Macon Ironmen emerged to become the smallest school in Illinois history to make the state final. There the Ironmen would play a dramatic game against a Chicago powerhouse that would change their lives forever.[2013 winner]
2012
Adult Nonfiction Book
Other formats available
  Cover Art: A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier Beah, Ishmael
A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier
In a heart-wrenching, candid autobiography, a human rights activist offers a firsthand account of war from the perspective of a former child soldier, detailing the violent civil war that wracked his native Sierra Leone and the government forces that transformed a gentle young boy into a killer as a member of the army. [2008 Winner]
2007
Adult Nonfiction Book (Biography)
  Cover Art: Swimming to Antarctica: Tales of a Long-distance Swimmer Cox, Lynne
Swimming to Antarctica: Tales of a Long-distance Swimmer
Cox was inducted into the Swimming Hall of Fame in 2000, and between her plunges, has written extensively about her adventures. Some of the two dozen essays here have appeared in The New Yorker or The Los Angeles Times. [2005 Winner]
2004
Adult Nonfiction Book (Biography)
  Cover Art: Eagle Blue: a Team, a Tribe, and a High School Basketball Season in Arctic Alaska D'Orso, Michael
Eagle Blue: a Team, a Tribe, and a High School Basketball Season in Arctic Alaska
The Fort Yukon Eagles, winners of six consecutive regional championships, are the pride and joy of their tribe. Each year, from November to March, the Eagles struggle through the Arctic winter's brutal cold and near-continual darkness, in search of a championship and an identity. [2007 Winner]
2006
Adult Nonfiction Book
  Cover Art: The Oxford Project Feldstein, Peter
The Oxford Project
Meet the residents of Oxford, Iowa (population 676) in a series of photos taken in 1984, then again in 2004, twenty years later. Find out the stories behind the faces, and the changes and heartbreak that lie behind the smiles. [2009 Winner]
2008
Adult Nonfiction Book
  Cover Art: The Good Soldiers Finkel, David
The Good Soldiers
In the tradition of Black Hawk Down, The Good Soldiers takes an unforgettable look at the heroes and the ruined soldiers fighting in the Iraq War. [2010 Winner]
2009
Adult Nonfiction Book
  Cover Art: The New Kids: Big Dreams and Brave Journeys at a High School for Immigrant Teens Hauser, Brooke
The New Kids: Big Dreams and Brave Journeys at a High School for Immigrant Teens
Freelance writer Hauser tracks the staff and students at the International High School at Prospect Heights in Brooklyn, N.Y., providing their personal histories as well as their day-to-day experiences. [2012 Winner]
2011
Adult Nonfiction Book
  Cover Art: The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Creating Currents of Electricity and Hope Kamkwamba, William
The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Creating Currents of Electricity and Hope
An enterprising teenager in Malawi builds a windmill from scraps he finds around his village and brings electricity, and a future, to his family. [2010 Winner]
2009
Adult Nonfiction Book
  Cover Art: Relish : My Life in the Kitchen Knisley, Lucy
Relish : My Life in the Kitchen
Lucy Knisley loves food. The daughter of a chef and a gourmet, this talented young cartoonist comes by her obsession honestly. In her forthright, thoughtful, and funny memoir, Lucy traces key episodes in her life thus far, framed by what she was eating at the time and lessons learned about food, cooking, and life. Each chapter is bookended with an illustrated recipe-- many of them treasured family dishes, and a few of them Lucy's original inventions.[2014 Winner]
2013
Teen Graphic Novel
  Cover Art: Shadow Divers: the True Adventure of Two Americans Who Risked Everything to Solve One of the Last Mysteries of World War II Kurson, Robert
Shadow Divers: the True Adventure of Two Americans Who Risked Everything to Solve One of the Last Mysteries of World War II
Two weekend scuba divers risk everything to solve a great historical mystery surrounding the wreckage of a World War II German U-boat off the coast of New Jersey, its ruined interior a macabre wasteland of twisted metal, tangled wires, and human bones. [2005 Winner]
2004
Adult Nonfiction Book
  Cover Art: The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game Lewis, Michael
The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game
Follows one young man from his impoverished childhood with a crack-addicted mother, through his discovery of the sport of football, to his rise to become one of the most successful, highly-paid players in the NFL. [2007 Winner]
2006
Adult Nonfiction Book
Other formats available
  Cover Art: Breaking Night: a Memoir of Forgiveness, Survival, and My Journey from Homeless to Harvard Murray, Liz
Breaking Night: a Memoir of Forgiveness, Survival, and My Journey from Homeless to Harvard
The memoir of a young woman who at age 15 was living on the streets but survived to make it to Harvard. Murray's story was featured in the Lifetime Original Movie Homeless to Harvard. [2011 Winner]
2010
Adult Nonfiction Book
  Cover Art: Truth & Beauty : a Friendship Patchett, Ann
Truth & Beauty : a Friendship
Tender but brutal, this portrait of unwavering commitment shines light on the little-explored world of women's friendships through the author's relationship with critically acclaimed and recently deceased author, Lucy Grealy. [2005 Winner]
2004
Adult Nonfiction Book (Biography)
  Cover Art: American Shaolin: Flying Kicks, Buddhist Monks, and the Legend of Iron Crotch : an Odyssey in the New China Polly, Matthew
American Shaolin: Flying Kicks, Buddhist Monks, and the Legend of Iron Crotch : an Odyssey in the New China
Traces the author's childhood dream of studying the martial arts at the famed Shaolin Temple in China, his initial disenchantment with the tourist-trap school that turned into respect for its dedicated monk instructors, and the training that led to his eventual representation of the Temple in international competitions. [2008 Winner]
2007
Adult Nonfiction Book (Biography)
  Cover Art: Jesus Land: a Memoir Scheeres, Julia
Jesus Land: a Memoir
Tells the story of a white girl who was sent from the Midwest to a Christian reform school in the Dominican Republic after she and her black adopted brother fought back against the racism and bullying that was directed toward them. [2006 Winner]
2006
Adult Nonfiction Book (Biography)
  Cover Art: Stitches: a Memoir Small, David
Stitches: a Memoir
One day David Small awoke from a supposedly harmless operation to discover that he had been transformed into a virtual mute. A colcal cord removed, his throat slashed and stitched together like a bloody boot, the fourteen-year-old boy had not been told that he had cancer and was expected to die. [2010 Winner]
2009
Adult Graphic Novel SMALL
  Cover Art: Rats: Observations On the History and Habitat of the City's Most Unwanted Inhabitants Sullivan, Robert
Rats: Observations On the History and Habitat of the City's Most Unwanted Inhabitants
The author dispenses rat facts and rat stories, looking into the history of rats, and describes how, with the aid of a notebook and night-vision gear, he sat nightly in a garbage-filled alley getting to know the wild city rat. [2005 Winner]
2004
Adult Nonfiction Book
  Cover Art: The Glass Castle: a Memoir Walls, Jeannette
The Glass Castle: a Memoir
...her father, Rex Walls, had done everything he could to escape. He drank. He stole the grocery money and disappeared for days. As the dysfunction of the family escalated, Jeannette and her brother and sisters had to fend for themselves, supporting one another as they weathered their parents' betrayals and, finally, found the resources and will to leave home. [2006 Winner]
2005
Adult Nonfiction Book (Biography)
Other formats available
  Cover Art: The Kids are All Right: a Memoir Welch, Diana
The Kids are All Right: a Memoir
The poignant, harrowing story of four siblings--Amanda, Liz, Dan, and Diana Welch--who despite their wrenching loss and subsequent separation, retained the resilience and humor that both their mother and father endowed them with--growing up as lost souls, taking disastrous turns along the way, but eventually coming out right side up and being together again. [2010 Winner]
2009
Adult Nonfiction Book (Biography)
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