Tearjerkers: Books for Teens


Abelove, Joan. Saying it Out Loud. 1999.
Mindy's mother is dying, her father won't talk about it, and all Mindy wants is to have a second chance to tell her mother everything she never said to her.
Bennett, James. I Can Hear the Mourning Dove. 1990.
Grace, who suffers from depression, attempts suicide after her father's death.
Carter, Forrest. The Education of Little Tree. 1976.
Sensitive autobiographical account of the Cherokee way as seen through the eyes of a young boy in the Appalachian Mountains.
Dessen, Sarah. Someone Like You. 1998.
Halley's junior year of high school includes the death of her best friend Scarlett's boyfriend, the discovery that Scarlett is pregnant, and Halley's own first serious relationship.
Doherty, Berlie. Dear Nobody. 1991.
During the 1960s, a teenage girl is sent to live in a home for teenage girls.
Keyes, Daniel. Flowers for Algernon. 1966.
Mentally disabled Charlie Gordon participates in an experiment which turns him into a genius, but only temporarily.
Lee, Harper. To Kill a Mockingbird. 1960.
Atticus Finch, a lawyer in a small southern town steeped in racism, is appointed to defend a Negro on a rape charge in this contemporary American classic.
McKinley, Robin. Beauty: A Retelling of the Story of the Beauty and the Beast. 1978.
Contrary to the name, 16-year-old Beauty is not the prettiest girl in her family, but she is the cleverest, bravest and most honorable.
Mitchell, Margaret. Gone with the Wind. 1936.
A spoiled young southern belle vows to rebuild her family plantation home after the Civil War and is swept off her feet by a man who infuriates her.
Rawls, Wilson. Where the Red Fern Grows. 1961.
A boy living in the Ozark Mountains acquires two beloved coon hounds and together the three of them experience danger, adventure, love and sorrow.
Smith, Betty. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. 1947.
American masterpiece about a young girl's coming of age at the turn of the century.
Yolen, Jane. Briar Rose. 1992.
Powerful novel that blends the legend of Sleeping Beauty with the historical tragedy of the Holocaust.