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Teen books from the 80's?

Read YA Lit

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Dec 3, 2009, 10:03pm Top

Can anyone remember popular books for teen girls from the 80's??

Edited: Dec 3, 2009, 10:29pm Top

I remember the Sweet Dreams series from the 80s, which seemed to be pretty popular. And, also, Sweet Valley High.

Edited: Dec 4, 2009, 10:42am Top

Saddle Club, Treehouse Times, Baby-Sitter Club, later versions of Nancy Drew (she gets re-made every generation it seems), Pee-Wee Scouts, Wayside School, Anastasia, Tillerman series (at least one of the books in this series was a Newbery honor).

Perhaps not fully 80s, some early 90s but these are titles I remember reading when I was in grade school and I was born in '81.

The Baby-Sitter's Club books and Nancy Drew books have been remade into pretty good graphic novels which still keep the feel of the original books.

Dec 4, 2009, 10:49am Top

The Flowers in the Attic series by V. C. Andrews. It was not technically meant for teens, but when I was 14 and 15 (1986 and 1987) every girl I knew had read at least 1 of them. Some girls were completely addicted to them.

In middle school, I know that the teen horror books were very popular (They were available through the scholastic book club orders - I do not remember titles or authors at this point.)

Edited: Dec 4, 2009, 1:07pm Top

#4.. Christopher Pike wrote trilogies and stand alone titles. Also R.L. Stein Goosebumps for the younger middle schoolers / older elementary schoolers and various trilogies for the older teens.

Dec 4, 2009, 9:11pm Top

#5 These were meant for teens and and were stand alone horrors. More adult with hints of sex and murder. I remember two - 1 was about a college aged vampire that goes to night school - read in 84. 2 was about a doll that possessed the owner - probably read in 82.

Dec 6, 2009, 4:13pm Top

Early 80's - Yes, the Sweet Dreams romance books which included some mini-series as well as the First Love from Silhouette romance books. There were also the Scholastic Wildfire books which were mostly romances. Authors I remember without looking - Judy Blume, Norma Klein, Maureen Daly, Maud Johnson, Bruce and Carol Hart, Jeanette Eyerly, and I can give you more if I go looking. I've been reading through my First Love books and have been listing them in my library here as I do.

I remember reading the Flowers in the Attic Series back then I had never read anything like it at the time. It was scary and thrilling and shocking at the same time.

I didn't read the Pikes - I was not into that kind of horror.

Some of the other series I remember from the later 80's but I was too old for them at that time.

Dec 7, 2009, 12:15am Top

Not just for girls, but The Grounding of Group Six.

V. C. Andrews was very popular, and Judy Blume and Paula Danzinger, and S. E. Hinton, even if they weren't published in the 80s.

I read Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys when I was in third grade, so I don't think of them as teen books.

Dec 7, 2009, 12:24am Top

The classic lesbian coming-of-age novel, Annie on My Mind (1982) by Nancy Garden, which was just re-issued a couple years ago in a 25th anniversary paperback edition that includes an interview with the author. Still excellent, though some contemporary readers may find it a little bit dated.

Dec 16, 2009, 12:10am Top

I remember the summer when everyone read Forever by Judy Blume. Those darn V.C. Andrews books were super-popular at my school. My sister is 8 years younger and still has her Christopher Pike books from the early 90s.

Edited: Dec 19, 2009, 9:55pm Top

I remember reading Virgina Andrews and the Point Horror Series, with titles from Christopher Pike, R.L Stine and D. E. Athkins. I read lots of Robert Cormier as well.

I also read S. E. Hinton, Judy Blume, Jenny Wagner (her Gypsy series). I also went through the teen romance stage, reading from the Sweet Dreams books, P.S. I love you by Barbara Conklin was one of my faves.

Brings back memories :) Makes me want to reread some of them.

Jan 31, 2010, 12:57pm Top

Thoroughbreed series by Joanna
Campbell, either 80s or early 90s.

Tamora Pierce started her Alanna books in the 80s.

Beverly Cleary and Judy Blume books

Feb 2, 2010, 4:05pm Top

I'm trying to remember the title of a teen romance book I read in either the late 80s or early 90s.

This is what I remember about the story: A teenage girl vacations with her family in either Spain or Mexico (I think it's Spain), and she meets two different guys who are native to that country. One is kind of shy/moody but sincere, and the other is more popular but also a player.

At one point in the book, the shy guy and the girl are on a hike somewhere and he leads her to a place where thousands of Monarch butterflies have gathered in the trees, and he shows her how to stand still so the butterflies will land on her too.

If anybody else has read that book and remembers the title, I would really appreciate knowing what it is.

Feb 2, 2010, 6:05pm Top

BelleWalker, I don't know the book, but you might want to consider creating a new thread to ask your question. More people'll see it then. (You might also want to consider posting it to Name That Book which is a group dedicated to finding books people can't remember instead of here.)

I hope you'll find the book!

Feb 4, 2010, 9:06am Top

Being born in '87, I read a lot of 80s YA/kids fiction while growing up in the 90s. Definitely loved Judy Blume, S.E. Hinton, Beverly Cleary, and as many Nancy Drew books as I could get my hands on. My mom wouldn't let me read Sweet Valley High (because they were trashy :D), so I snuck them at the library.

Also, for some reason when I was ten or so I was obsessed with those Lurlene McDaniel books about kids with cancer, etc.

Feb 5, 2010, 5:33am Top

I liked The Babysitter's Club, Saddle Club and The Black Stallion series of books. I was really into horses back then, took lessons and loved it. Now Im too heavy to even think about getting on a horse... those were the days though :(

Choose your Own Adventure books were definitely ones I read during the 80's... I remember trying to write book reports about them and having a hard time because the story could be so many different things.

I remember reading National Velvet in 5th grade.. and all the kids staring at me wide eyed because the book was soooo thick!

Any of The Christopher Pike and R.L. Stein books were devoured as well but Im fairly sure those were more in the early 90's as I remember reading them in the new house we moved to in '94

I remember stealing a bunch of my brother's Goosebumps books and reading those too during the 90's

I was born in 1980... sooo many books to remember! So many more that Ive forgotten..

Apr 19, 2010, 12:38pm Top

Cages of glass, flowers of time was one of my faves when I was in the mood for a cry! Charlotte Culin wrote an amazing first book that touched my heart and then fell off the face of the planet. I wonder what happened to her?

Edited: Apr 19, 2010, 10:05pm Top

Me too. I loved this book and I've looked and looked for her. No luck. She is an awesome talent.

ETA: Touchstone fairy: Cages of Glass, Flowers of Time

May 23, 2010, 9:28pm Top

i am trying to find the same book it was mexico though, if you find it my email is jennyb29jen@netscape.net thank you

May 23, 2010, 9:55pm Top

i found it ... it was called cindy and it is by deborah kent and it was of the wildfire series

Aug 22, 2011, 2:45pm Top

I am trying to remember a fiction series I read in the 1980s....similar to Flowers in the Attic series....about a girl who had family secrets and was moved around...one of the books took place in a bayou I think?? The paperback covers had a hole in them with a picture of the main character and when you opened it the bigger picture showed others in the picture. I realize this is a pathetic description, but hoping someone will know!!

Edited: Aug 22, 2011, 5:30pm Top

VC Andrews had another popular series at that time-- Heaven. The cover had a cutout with her picture in it and when you opened it the whole family portrait was visible. I don't remember a bayou but they lived in the Ozarks I think? West Virginia maybe. I always liked that series better than FitA.

ETA: I remember at the time there were lots of babies named Heaven Leigh, after this book.

Aug 22, 2011, 9:00pm Top

Yes! Thank you! How could I forget that it was a VC Andrews series! We are driving home from vacation and I have been trying to figure it out on my Ipad for hours...my kids all cheered when I told them that someone responded. I promise none of them are named Heaven Leigh! Many thanks!

Aug 23, 2011, 7:30am Top

>22 UnrulySun:, 23: I think the series set in the bayou was either Ruby or Dawn, I used to read book 1 of V.C. Andrews' series, but never wanted to read what happened when the heroine was older. FitA was the only series where I read all 5 books.

Aug 23, 2011, 1:40pm Top

Yes! I am now remembering that there were several series...The Landry family and so on! Funny how I could picture the cover, but had no recall of title or author! Many thanks for your help!

Edited: Mar 21, 2012, 1:27am Top

I am trying to remember a fictional young adult book I read in the late 1980s, early 1990s, about a a young girl named Sylvia. I remember it was a coming of age book where the main charater is traveling from the east coast to the west coast, she stays in hotels, she meets or has an older male friend that helps her, theres a little will they won't they but he's in his early 20's & she's in her mid to late teens & I don't think anything happens, just chemistry. I wanna say there a lot of description on her clothes, how she looks, how pretty she is. She seems to be running away or to something, She doesn't seem to have a mother, I don't remember about the father. I thought the title was Sylvia but maybe its not because I can't seem to find it. I think the book is set in the 1950's or 60's. Hoping someone will know, Many Thanks

Mar 20, 2012, 7:00pm Top

You should repost this in the "Name That Book" group; you'll find much more help.


Mar 21, 2012, 10:58am Top

How about Judy Blume? "Are You There God, It's Me Margaret?"

Mar 21, 2012, 1:21pm Top

Ellen Conford, With love to all my fans from Sylvie, something like that. Funny I was just reading a blog post about it so I recognized the description but I've never read it myself.

Mar 24, 2012, 10:44pm Top

This thread made me go looking (online) for YA romances I read in the '80s. I'd never have remembered the authors or titles, but I sure did recognize the covers right away. (They all had photos of teen girls/couples...and, oh-my-god, the clothes!!!)

Edited: May 26, 2012, 12:33am Top

I'm searching for an oldie myself about a girl who was made to go white water rafting for the summer and was always getting herself in some bind or another. She was kind of spoiled and the river guide always called her Duchess or Princess or something. She had a real fear of heights, too. I'm totally obsessed with finding this book. Any help would be awesome, thanks. ;-) Oh yeah, and her name was Chelsea.

Jun 14, 2012, 2:56pm Top

The Princess Routine by Tonya Woods~total 80s fabulosity!!!

Jul 27, 2012, 11:02am Top

I am looking for a book I read in the early 80's. Not sure if at the time is was considered a "teen book" or more of a Romance novel for adults. It had two characters "Darcy" and "Charlie", teens who fell in love, but Charlie was dying of cancer. Anyone remember the name or know how I could find it?

Edited: Oct 11, 2012, 12:44am Top

Does anybody remember this teen 80s book.... I always thought it was called mirror mirror but I can't find it under that title. Two girls...I believe they were supposed to have been twin cousins if I recall correctly, however they could have been twin sisters who live in different areas. One was from somewhere on the east coast near the water, she loved the water. The other one was more pampered and used to a ritzier life. They ended up trading places for the summer and I don't believe anyone knew about it. It seems one of the girls names was Gilly. Any ideas?

Edited: Oct 11, 2012, 2:41am Top

ETA: response to #34:

But that's the plot of the movie The Parent Trap, which had various productions -- most famously 1961 (Hayley Mills), with a 1998 (Lindsay Lohan) re-make. The IMDb shows a German named Erich Kästner as the author of the novel (Das doppelte Lottchen) on which the movie was based, and checking this out on Wikipedia it looks like there's an English-language novel translation under the title Lottie and Lisa.

Do you think that sometime back in the 80s you read a tie-in edition to the 1961 movie production?

Oct 11, 2012, 5:46pm Top

Oct 11, 2012, 10:54pm Top

That's it! Thanks :)

Oct 17, 2012, 3:22pm Top

#33 -- Could that have been something by Lurlene McDaniel? She wrote a lot of books about teens with cancer.

Jan 21, 2013, 5:32pm Top

I loved the Lurlene McDaniel books too!!! I have almost all of them as well!

Mar 30, 2013, 1:48pm Top

I am trying to remember those teen romance book series from the 80's. Any memories or recommendations please post! Thanks!

May 31, 2013, 10:45pm Top

I'm trying to find a teen romance book from the 80's, a teen girl spends the summer on Mackinac island with her (?) rich cousins? Her female cousin wants to set her up with one of her preppy sailing rich crowd but she falls for the son of a local- there is something about working in the place they make fudge and her feeling torn about the rich cousins as she's not really snobby herself. Any one remember?

Jan 5, 2016, 11:42pm Top

Thanks #11 Only remembered the title P.S. I love you, not the author and google wasn't much help, kept pointing to the more recent movie/book. LOL, for some reason thought it was by Judy Blume.

Yup, VC Andrews was popular because she was "taboo". Apparently, someone in the year(we were 11/12) got caught circulating her books and there was an entire assembly called to warn the school about how terrible it was to read something like that. It was a Catholic missionary school. Of course, they never thought it would be equally horrible to show us those abortion videos...

Frankly, I had nightmares after reading VC Andrews and I never really read Anais Nin because it was too overwhelming. My teen romance years were mostly populated by Nancy Drew, up to the point where she considered ditching Ned? (I can't remember her boyfriend's name) for that rockstar, plus Sweet Valley High - trashy and all LOL.

Feb 25, 2016, 10:09am Top

I remember reading a lot of the Xanth books by Piers Anthony as a teenager and both my boys have read many of these books as well, so I guess they stood the test of time. Also, another one that sticks out in my head was one called The Changeover, which I think was a supernatural teen romancy sort of book. I remember liking it, but can't remember really what it was about LOL

May 4, 2016, 5:34pm Top

I was cleaning out my parents' attic and found my complete collection of the "Couples" series. There were like 40 books or so and each one centered on a different couple. All the kids went to the same HS, so they all appeared in the books and the series just kept going as one class graduated, they bought in more characters. I reread a few of them and, oh, man the memories!

Nov 21, 2016, 10:18am Top

I went to an all girls school and I think everybody read "Forever".

Nov 21, 2016, 10:29am Top

I remember reading pretty much most of these books by Paul Zindel. I read a lot of John Saul and VC Andrews mentioned above.

Jun 19, 1:47pm Top

hi, i don't recall anything specifically about fudge but the rest of your description sounds like 'princess amy', part of the sweet dreams collection (#4)

Jun 19, 7:05pm Top

i wasn't aware until very recently just how extensive the 'couples' series had become in its day! i read the first three, loved & still have them (in fact just re-read #1 this past weekend). my signature series as a teen was 'seniors'.. i collected them as they were published starting around 8th grade or my freshman year, & have the entire set to this day. i had several from the sweet dreams & caprice collections, too -- so many great teen books were born from the 80s!

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