Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Top Ten Tuesday: Fictional Families & Friends



Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s topic is platonic relationships. Here are ten novels where romantic love takes a back seat (or doesn’t make an appearance). These books are all about the friends and families. I separated them into vague age groups for you because I’m helpful like that.








Fictional Families & Friends







Children’s / Middlegrade







1. The Wonderful Wizard Of Oz by L. Frank Baum



Follow the yellow brick road! Dorothy thinks she's lost forever when a tornado whirls her and her dog, Toto, into a magical world. To get home, she must find the wonderful wizard in the Emerald City of Oz. On the way she meets the Scarecrow, the Tin Woodman and the Cowardly Lion. But the Wicked Witch of the West has her own plans for the new arrival—will Dorothy ever see Kansas again?





















2. Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson




Jess Aarons' greatest ambition is to be the fastest runner in his grade. He's been practicing all summer and can't wait to see his classmates' faces when he beats them all. But on the first day of school, a new girl boldly crosses over to the boys' side and outruns everyone.

That's not a very promising beginning for a friendship, but Jess and Leslie Burke become inseparable. Together they create Terabithia, a magical kingdom in the woods where the two of them reign as king and queen, and their imaginations set the only limits.















3. The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate



Ivan is an easygoing gorilla. Living at the Exit 8 Big Top Mall and Video Arcade, he has grown accustomed to humans watching him through the glass walls of his domain. He rarely misses his life in the jungle. In fact, he hardly ever thinks about it at all.

Instead, Ivan thinks about TV shows he’s seen and about his friends Stella, an elderly elephant, and Bob, a stray dog. But mostly Ivan thinks about art and how to capture the taste of a mango or the sound of leaves with color and a well-placed line.

Then he meets Ruby, a baby elephant taken from her family, and she makes Ivan see their home through new eyes. When Ruby arrives, change comes with her, and it’s up to Ivan to make it a change for the better.









Middlegrade / Young Adult







4. The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton



The novel tells the story of Ponyboy Curtis and his struggles with right and wrong in a society in which he believes that he is an outsider. According to Ponyboy, there are two kinds of people in the world: greasers and socs. A soc (short for "social") has money, can get away with just about anything, and has an attitude longer than a limousine. A greaser, on the other hand, always lives on the outside and needs to watch his back. Ponyboy is a greaser, and he's always been proud of it, even willing to rumble against a gang of socs for the sake of his fellow greasers—until one terrible night when his friend Johnny kills a soc.


















5. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak



It's a small story, about:
a girl
an accordionist
some fanatical Germans
a Jewish fist fighter
and quite a lot of thievery.

1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier.

Liesel, a nine-year-old girl, is living with her foster family on Himmel Street. Her parents have been taken away to a concentration camp. Liesel steals books. This is her story and the story of the inhabitants of her street when the bombs begin to fall.












6. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky



Perks follows observant “wallflower” Charlie as he charts a course through the strange world between adolescence and adulthood. First dates, family drama, and new friends. Sex, drugs, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Devastating loss, young love, and life on the fringes. Caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it, Charlie must learn to navigate those wild and poignant roller-coaster days known as growing up.


















7. Code Name Verity by Elizabeth E. Wein



Oct. 11th, 1943—A British spy plane crashes in Nazi-occupied France. Its pilot and passenger are best friends. One of the girls has a chance at survival. The other has lost the game before it's barely begun. 

When "Verity" is arrested by the Gestapo, she's sure she doesn't stand a chance. As a secret agent captured in enemy territory, she's living a spy's worst nightmare. Her Nazi interrogators give her a simple choice: reveal her mission or face a grisly execution.

As she intricately weaves her confession, Verity uncovers her past, how she became friends with the pilot Maddie, and why she left Maddie in the wrecked fuselage of their plane. On each new scrap of paper, Verity battles for her life, confronting her views on courage and failure and her desperate hope to make it home. But will trading her secrets be enough to save her from the enemy?









Young Adult / Adult







8. Of Mice And Men by John Steinbeck



The compelling story of two outsiders striving to find their place in an unforgiving world. Drifters in search of work, George and his simple-minded friend Lennie have nothing in the world except each other and a dream—a dream that one day they will have some land of their own. Eventually they find work on a ranch in California’s Salinas Valley, but their hopes are doomed as Lennie, struggling against extreme cruelty, misunderstanding and feelings of jealousy, becomes a victim of his own strength.


















9. Vicious by V.E. Schwab



Victor and Eli started out as college roommates—brilliant, arrogant, lonely boys who recognized the same sharpness and ambition in each other. In their senior year, a shared research interest in adrenaline, near-death experiences, and seemingly supernatural events reveals an intriguing possibility: that under the right conditions, someone could develop extraordinary abilities. But when their thesis moves from the academic to the experimental, things go horribly wrong. 

Ten years later, Victor breaks out of prison, determined to catch up to his old friend (now foe), aided by a young girl whose reserved nature obscures a stunning ability. Meanwhile, Eli is on a mission to eradicate every other super-powered person that he can find—aside from his sidekick, an enigmatic woman with an unbreakable will. Armed with terrible power on both sides, driven by the memory of betrayal and loss, the archnemeses have set a course for revenge—but who will be left alive at the end?












10. The Secret History by Donna Tartt



Under the influence of their charismatic classics professor, a group of clever, eccentric misfits at an elite New England college discover a way of thinking and living that is a world away from the humdrum existence of their contemporaries. But when they go beyond the boundaries of normal morality they slip gradually from obsession to corruption and betrayal, and at last—inexorably—into evil.
















Have you read any of these? What did you think? What are your favorite books that feature friends or families?









63 comments:

  1. Great list! The Book Thief made my list this week, too, and one of these days I really need to read Code Name Verity.

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    1. I love The Book Thief. It’s one of my favorite books ever.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  2. I've read a couple of these and I agree that the friendship of Jess and Leslie was great. Such a sad book, as was The Book Thief!

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    1. When I was making this list, I realized that most of my choices were depressing. I guess I like sad books.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  3. The One and Only Ivan looks like something I would enjoy! Thank you for bringing it to my attention. I haven't read any of the others, though I have seen some of their movies.

    Lindsi @ Do You Dog-ear?

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    1. Ivan is a sweet story. If you read it, I hope you like it.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  4. I own The One and Only Ivan but I'm afraid to read it because I know I'll cry. I'm pathetic right? Kill all the people and I'm fine, touch and animal and you're dead to me.

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    1. I burst into tears at one point in The One and Only Ivan. You aren't pathetic at all! It's really good, but yeah, there are some tough moments.

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    2. Haha, same. A book has never made me cry, but I get upset when young children and animals die. I’m happy with killing off everybody else, though.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  5. Code Name Verity is such a perfect pick. Those two shared an amazing bond.

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    1. YES! That was one of the first books that came to mind when I saw the topic. That friendship was epic.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  6. The Outsiders!!! Love that book. I have The Secret History to read still.

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    1. The Secret History is so good! The Outsiders is one of my all-time favorites.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  7. I really loved the friendships in The Perks! One of my all time fav books! Happy to see it on your list

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    1. I was obsessed with that book when I was a young teenager. I read it a thousand times.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  8. I really need to read The Outsiders. I've only been meaning to for who knows how many years now. Vicious is another one I'd like to check out, so I'm glad to hear romantic love isn't a main focus. Love The Secret History so much, and a big part of that is because of the group of friends involved. Great list!

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    1. YES! Read The Outsiders and Vicious. There isn’t much romance in either of them, and the friendships are complicated.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  9. still need to read the perks of being a wall flower, but am a big fan of vicious. Great list.

    Tori @ In Tori Lex

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    1. I loved Perks when I was a kid. It’s been a long time since I reread it. I’m kind of scared of what I’d think about it now.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  10. I didn't love Perks of Being a Wallflower, but The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and Bridge to Terabithia are two of my favorites! Fun list. :)

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    1. Sorry you didn’t like Perks. Wizard of Oz and Terabithia are some of my childhood favorites. I read Wizard of Oz so often that the covers fell off.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  11. Why are so many of these saaaad? The One & Only Ivan is a brilliant pick for this topic though!

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  12. I always do my TTT culling books from the past year, but if I didn't, I would have picked some of these books. The Wizard of Oz was a genius pick. They really were a great group. And the friendship in Perks was so, so special. Terabithia and The Outsiders are kind of sad, but those featured some A+ friendships as well.

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    1. I usually cull from this year’s books for TTTs, too, but so many of my favorite books have epic friendships. I’d feel bad if I didn’t feature them.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  13. Aww, Bridge to Terabithia! I love that book!

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  14. So many of these are new to me, but I love Bridge to Terabithia! Is it bad that I love the relationship between Dorothy and Toto the most? XD

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    1. Haha, I love Toto. The story wouldn’t have been the same without the dog!

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  15. I have only read two of these books. The Wizard of Oz does have some great friendships and I would agree with including The Book Thief. I have so many of the other books on my tbr list.

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  16. Oh my goodness, so many good picks/titles. I love pretty much all of these? And also I'm like, "OKAY, JESSICA. Why didn't you think of The Outsiders?" Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Haha, that happens to me every week! Somebody includes a book on their TTT that I totally should have thought about while I was making my list.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  17. I love the movie version of The Outsiders, but I've never read the book. I really should. I love the cast in the movie though- all those people before they were big stars.

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    1. I vaguely remember the movie. I’ve read the book a bunch of times, so I should probably re-watch the movie.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  18. Excellent post! So many wonderful families.

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  19. Be still my heart, the cover for The One and Only Ivan is sooo Lovely and sad and hopeful at the same time. This is a wonderful list, AJ, and a few titles I need to check out further.

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    1. I love that cover, too! It captures the themes and characters really well.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  20. Of Mice and Men is a great choice. I wish I could edit my post and add it. :)

    Here is our Top Ten Tuesday. Thanks for stopping by yesterday!

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  21. Of Mice and Men... I'm still heartbroken about it.

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    1. I know! I think I was 14 when I read it. I was not ready for that ending!

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  22. Oh, Bridge to Terabithia... I haven't read the book, I've seen the movie and it destroyed me, I didn't see it coming and I cried SO hard haha. I might give the book a try someday though because I'm curious :) The Secret History is also on my TBR, I only heard amazing things about it so far :)

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    1. The Secret History is awesome. I read Terabithia when I was a kid, and I also was not expecting the ending. Now that I’ve read it a zillion times, I can spot the foreshadowing.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  23. A great post! <3
    I am following you and invite you to me
    https://milentry-blog.blogspot.com

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  24. Ooh love the way you did this! The only ones I have read are Vicious and The Book Thief- though I think I "read" Of Mice and Men in high school? I want to read Perks and Code Name Verity too. I like when books have strong friendships and families (or even better, friendships that become LIKE families!)

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    1. Thanks! There are a lot of books that I “read” in school. I was a lazy kid who did not like assigned reading. I mostly remember Of Mice And Men because of the ending.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  25. Great list! Even with you having included some classic / must read titles on here... I haven't actually read any of these books. I absolutely love reading about families and friendship in fiction, so I definitely should check some of these out.

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  26. I've only read Viscous but I loved it. Very complicated friendship there lol

    Karen @ For What It's Worth

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    1. Haha, I agree. The complicated friendships are the main reason why I love that series.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  27. I read the OZ books a long time ago... I read just about all of them.

    I picked up Vicious in my mega-Thanksgiving weekend book spending spree. Oh, so much money spent on cheap books! I haven't read it yet though. Trying to read 3 big-ass Cassandra Clare books in one week before Queen of Air and Darkness comes out.

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  28. Ahh I forgot about The Book Thief and Perks! Such beautiful friendships and familial relationships in those two books!

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  29. I need to read The One and Only Ivan. My friend who is an elementary school teacher has been shoving it in my face to read since I started my Newbery Award Challenge.📗✨

    I have to finish The Goldfinch. I had to set it aside when I was first reading it because I had around ten ARCs to read one month (I know better now, ha ha) and although I was loving it, I never got back to it. Have you read The Goldfinch? The Secret History sounds like something I would love.
    👍✨

    I have not read The Book Thief or Code Verity, yet. The Book Thief is a definite read on my list for next year. 📚

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  30. Fab books on this list! I loved The Book Thief, Code Name Verity and Of Mice And Men. I don't think I've ever read The Outsiders though I'm sure I saw a film version

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  31. OH MY WORD, THE OUTSIDERS!!! What a book. It was the first novel that ever moved to tears...or should I say full-out, curled-up-in-a-corner-on-the-floor, can't-see-straight sobbing.

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  32. A big yes to pretty much every book on this list! I haven't read The Secret History or Code Name Verity yet, but I love the relationships in all of the other choices, especially Of Mice and Men and The Wizard of Oz.

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  33. I almost put The Outsiders on my list. I love that one so much. And seeing The Book Thief on your list just made me unexpectedly emotional. Great list!

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  34. I haven't actually read Bridge to Terabithia yet but I have seen the movie a few times and the relationships in there are great. <3

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  35. I love The Outsiders! Great list!

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  36. I read Bridge to Terebitha so many years ago in primary school and wow, I loved their friendship. I wanted to go to Terebitha so much... I absolutely love Of Mice and Men and that bromance friendship <3 is life <3 It made the ending hit me so hard in the feels. And I loved the family like friendship in The Outsiders too. Brilliant selections!

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