This is inspired by a series of posts I was reading at Reading Teen. They have a few posts that list books for teens that have little-to-no profanity or sexual content. I am the oldest of three children and my brother and sister are still only in their teens. But it can be hard to find books when you are that age that don’t have the characters either having sex or thinking about it constantly. At that 12-16 year old stage I didn’t care so much whether it was happening, I just didn’t want details. I always found it weird when the characters were my age and having sex, and if it was detailed it just made me uncomfortable. Part of that is how I was raised, and part of that is just the sort of teenager I was. But I thought I’d share some of my favourite clean read for teens (and I’ll note if they can be read by younger readers – 9-11) here. I intend on doing these as a series of posts, so look out for more posts on this subject.
The Harry Potter Series
Titles: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone*, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Harry Potter and the Prizoner of Azkaban, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
Author: J.K. Rowling.
Age Group: 12+
Subjects: witches, wizards, magic, good-vs-evil, mythological creatures, friendships, boarding schools
Profanity: Ron says bugger! and bloody hell! are few times in the books but nothing other than that.
Sexual content: There’s a few kisses in the later books (the characters are 15-16 by that stage) but nothing inappropriate.
Other Content: There are several character deaths in Deathly Hallows. There’s also one in Half-Blood Prince and one in Goblet of Fire. There are ghosts throughout the series, who live in the castle, and some of the confrontations with Lord Voldemort can be a bit scary for youngsters.
* It’s called Harry Potter and the Sorcer’s Stone in the USA
The Iron Fey Series
Titles: The Iron King, Winter’s Passage (novella), The Iron Daughter, The Iron Queen, Summer’s Crossing (novella), The Iron Knight.
Author: Julia Kagawa
Age Group: 13/14+ just because Meghan is a little bit older, and some of the ‘themes’ are a little bit darker or grown up
Subjects: faeries, talking cats, halflings, good-vs-evil, choices, consquences
Profanity: None really. If someone curses it’s usually ‘Character A cursed loudly’ as opposed to actual swearing.
Sexual Content: Meghan and Ash get a bit kissy but it doesn’t go further than that. Meghan’s 16.
Other Content: There are a few unpleasant scenes when Meghan has been kidnapped by the Unseelie fae. There’s also a few battles in the later books, but nothing too gory.