I Judge Random YA Booklists that Come Up in My News Feed

Because Google is a creepy stalker that knows everything about my life, I always seem to get book lists recommended to me on my Google news feed. Disclaimer, I love book lists. They’re one of my favorite posts to read (and write) because I love finding recommendations that fall into a certain theme, and I also love reading why the particular blogger wants to recommend a particular book. 

Good list GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

A list of all the reasons I love booklists

That being said, I always take book lists by bigger media outlets with a grain of salt. This is mostly because I’ve read some of these lists and a lot of times the only books on there are non-diverse, super hyped books. Recently, I’ve been seeing some lists that are featuring books by POC, that are own-voices, and are genuinely interesting instead of the same cookie-cutter hyped books that we all hear about constantly, which is pretty refreshing.

So I thought that this would be the perfect time to be unapologetically judgmental and generally condescending as I rate big media outlet book lists based purely on my own personal preferences!

Im Right Youre Wrong GIF - ImRight YoureWrong ShutUp - Discover ...

I always channel the Rank King when I’m judging things

I’ve chosen a few lists that have come up on my newsfeed before, and a few random ones that popped up when I googled “YA Books”. And will now proceed to judge them all!

Screenshot (36)

Buzzfeed: 15 Brand New Young Adult Novels That Are Just So, So Good

Pros: There are a lot of great upcoming books on this list! For diversity, Buzzfeed gets a 10/10, which goes for the genre of the YA books mentioned as well as the actual representation within the books. I also loved how they listed the release date and the cost of the book at different retail sites. 

Cons: Surprisingly, I have no complaints associated with this list. 

Final Thoughts: For a rating out of 10, this list gets an 8.75. This is only because there’s a book on this list that I personally don’t like, so it’s my prerogative to rate it as I wish. 

Forbes: The Best Young Adult Fantasy Novels of 2019

Pros: There was a lot of diverse representation within these books! 4/7 of these books were written by authors of color, so it’s great to see big outlets promoting diverse books.

Cons: Well. First off, I think that calling any of these books the “best” Young Adult of 2019 is a little bit of a stretch. Additionally, one of the books on the list, Furthermore, by Tahereh Mafi, came out in 2014. And is middle grade. 

Final Thoughts: If I was rating this list out of 10, I’d give it a 4.5 with points off for not researching what books were actually put on the list. 

Seventeen: The 91 Best YA Books of 2019 So Far

Pros: There’s probably some diversity in this list as well, given that it’s 91 books long. Also, wow! So many books to choose from if you have the patience to scroll!

Cons: So many books to choose from! It sort of feels like this list is just a huge compilation of every slightly hyped YA book from 2019. It makes sense that these were chosen as the 91 best YA books of 2019 so far since these might have been all the YA books published in 2019 so far (when this list was published.). That is, they would be if all the books on this list were YA. Which they’re not. 

Final Thoughts: Out of 10, I’ll give them a 6. Because they did include some books I enjoyed, but then again, with 91 books included, it’d be more impressive if they hadn’t. 

Cosmopolitan: The 15 Best Young Adult Books You’ll Be Obsessed With in 2019

Pros: I liked the little blurbs that were put next to each book on this list. They were fun and had more personality than your usual copy-paste synopsis. 

Cons: Yet again we have a list that’s including a book that isn’t YA. The first book on this list is Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo. Now I love Leigh Bardugo, but it’s safe to say that Ninth House is in no way YA. 

Final Thoughts: I would give this list a 7/10. They obviously get points off for the Ninth House faux pas, especially since they still put it on a YA list despite the drama associated with its age-rating when the advanced reader copies went around. But despite that, the list is still pretty solid. Of course, I’ve only read 3/15 books on the list, but the rest of them look okay. 

Huffpost: 9 Young Adult Books Every Kid (And Grown Up) Should Read

Pros: We love encouraging adults to read YA books! There are also a bunch of great classic YA books on here, so that’s fun if someone’s looking to get into YA for the first time. 

Cons: There isn’t much diversity on this list genre-wise. Every single book except one is contemporary, and while that’s great, I think that for a list that’s trying to introduce people YA it would be a better choice to diversify the options. Maybe include a little fantasy, sci-fi, and mystery into the mix. 

Final Thoughts: This list gets a whopping 8/10 rating for its general performance as a book list. Good job, HuffPost. 

Screenshot (36)

Overall my favorite list from this bunch has got to be the Buzzfeed list. I liked the books they suggested, the way they presented the options, and how they even included an option for ordering from indie bookstores as one of the options for purchasing the book.


A virtual trophy for Buzzfeed

I’ve had a lot of fun being judgy for no reason at all, and I’d love to hear what you guys think of these lists! Was I correct in my judgments or am I being way too biased?


 What do you guys think of the lists? Do you prefer lists from bigger media outlets or from bloggers? Do you enjoy judging things for no reason too?



28 thoughts on “I Judge Random YA Booklists that Come Up in My News Feed

  1. This is such a fabulously salty post, I love it!
    I agree with everything you said about the lists, especially the 91 books. Why were there so many?!
    – Emma 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know! I know that sometimes the lines between YA and other genres are sort of blurred, but people always seem to mess up with the books that have the most adult themes in them 😂 The Buzzfeed list has some great books! I haven’t read most of them, but I have seen other bloggers mention some of the books on there before.


  2. This is such a fabulous post! Especially because it gave me something to do, I too went to see what I thought about all the lists! And I must say that I agree with your thoughts. I think the Buzzfeed one was my favorite too. I have only read a couple of the books on the list but I loved both of them, so. Plus I think it is just the one with the widest, most diverse appeal. Like you said, the Huffpost one was decent, but only contemporary, and they lose more points with me for that since I am more of a sci-fi reader. And YES to the Forbes one throwing out some old MG books, what the heck, Forbes?! Only takes a hot second to hit up Goodreads! Thanks for the entertaining post!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yayy! I’m so happy that these lists provided some entertainment, though if you did scroll through the entire 91 books list, I do apologize 😂 Yeah, from some other lists I’ve seen it seems like Buzzfeed is really on top of their bookish game! Forbes was a little bit of an embarrassment, but hopefully one of their upcoming lists can redeem them. Thank you for reading!! 💕💕


  3. Ah, this is such a cool blog post idea 😍 I’m actually surprised at how many books on these lists were diverse! wow, I did not know media outlets paid attention to authors of color and queer authors that much… but I’m definitely not complaining. Though I think it’s easy to notice that some simply compiled a list of hyped books, not books that are actually… good. But I just may be biased since I didn’t like Descendant of the Crane, and it was featured on so many of these lists :”)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know! When I started getting these lists in my feed I started reading them solely for the purpose of judging them and was surprised at the amount of diverse representation they had on there. Though I do definitely agree that a lot of these books are hyped books which is why I’ll stick to my usual methods of reading blogger booklists 😂 Lol, my exact thoughts when reading Forbes list, was “Did they just google ‘Fantasy YA 2019’? Because I don’t like any of these books.”

      Liked by 1 person

  4. This is a really cool post, and I’m glad buzzfeed did something wrong for once. You’re totally right about Ninth House, it’s just not YA in any way? I get book lists in my google recommendations sometimes too and it is good they’re diverse. But surely it’s not that hard for people to do some research and make sure the books they’re putting on the lists are actually YA? *shrug*

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Exactly! It’s when I see lists where they have very much non-YA books on them that I know that not much effort was put into the post. I mean I can’t actually know 100%, but I feel if the people writing the post had read the books, Ninth House especially, they would know that it wasn’t YA 🤷‍♀️

      Liked by 1 person

  5. ahhah i feel the same way when i see non-bookish people recommending books because theyre usually SUPER popular or written by authors i dont really care for :p so basically, i love this post and your creativity

    definitely agree with you on the Seventeen list, there’s just too many books to narrow down and i feel like that can just make it more confusing to new readers than being helpful. fjkdalfjlak NINTH HOUSE SHOULD NOT BE ON A YA BOOK LIST

    i had a lot of fun reading you be judgy over these list!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yess, I get so judgy sometimes! I’ll read a list and be like, this book is on every hyped list, it’s the Barnes and Noble book club read, use your huge platform to promote smaller books!! But they don’t usually do that, so I guess that’s what we bloggers are for 😂

      Every time I see a book like Ninth House or Nevernight on a YA book list or shelf I’m just like fdhkasahuiuahe did you read the book???

      Thank you for reading!! 💕💕

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Such a great idea! I always love looking at the “best of” lists that come out at the end of the year and commenting on them, but I never think to do it mid-year. I agree that it’s weird that some of these lists have MG or adult books on them. Furthermore seems especially weird, since it’s been out for years!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ooh, I love looking at the best of lists! It’s always fun to see if they’re just lists of all the popular books from the year, or if they’re genuine compilations of books the person thought was good. I was so weirded out by Furthermore! Especially because the title of the list said “2019” specifically 😂


    1. Honestly, I was going into this post expecting to hate every list there was, but I was pleasantly surprised! Also, as much as I try to hate on all its quizzes and lists, I feel like Buzzfeed is some sort of guilty pleasure 😂 Whenever one of their lists of quizzes comes up in my feed I automatically click on them!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Oh what an awesome idea, I love it SO much. To be honest, I don’t read these kind of lists on media outlets so much…. 99% of the recommendations I read are on book blogs directly haha 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you!! I get most of my recommendations from bloggers too, mostly because I don’t really trust all of these big outlet lists 😂 Like, I don’t know if they’re just recommending books because they see they’re popular, but when I get a recommendation from a blogger I know that they loved the book, and the recommendation feels so much more genuine!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I love this post, especially as I have had the same thoughts about ‘big media outlet book lists’!
    Crazy that a list of best YA fantasy of 2019 would include Furthermore by Tahereh Mafi – a clear example of why I usually disregard any of these book lists :’)
    It was a lot of fun to read you being judgey 😛

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yessss, I saw that one on the list and was kind of taken aback because it doesn’t fit the topic of that list at all! 😂

      Honestly, I’m so happy I got into blogging because blogger recommendations tend to be way more genuine and diverse. Thank you!! 😁💕

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s