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Thrilling YA Mystery Novels

YA mystery novels are a great genre to introduction your high school students to. Students like trying to solve the mystery before it is revealed.

YA mystery novels can be a great genre to read for many students. This blog post is a list of 10 different YA mystery novels that will grab your students’ attention.

This YA Mystery Novels blog post contains affiliate links that are of no cost to the reader. If you make a purchase through the provided links, this blog will receive a small commission to help with the financial costs of maintaining the site.

10 Thrilling YA Mystery Novels

Monday’s Not Coming by Tiffany D Jackson

Claudia’s best friend, Monday, is missing. She uncovers a disturbing mystery surrounding her disappearance, including the unsettling fact that no one remembers when they last saw her. Claudia’s determination to find Monday becomes a desperate search for answers.

Aftermath by Kelley Armstrong

Skye Gilchrist’s brother died in a school shooting three years ago, but he was the shooter and now Skye is moving home. Skye’s best friend Jesse lost his brother in the same shooting. Jesse and Skye look at what happened the day of the shooting and get closer to discovering a new killer.

Allegedly by Tiffany D. Jackson

When Mary was nine she allegedly killed a baby in the care of her mother. Now, she lives in a group home and thinks it may be time to tell the real story.

I Am the Weapon by Allen Zadoff

A teen trained as an assassin starts to question who he is and what he really wants when he is assigned to kill the mayor of NYC.

One of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus

On any other day students at Bayview High go in for detention and head home after they have served their time, but that is not true for Simon today. Simon, the creator of their high school gossip app, dies 24 hours before he posts the juiciest gossip there is ever yet to be on 4 high-profile students. Who’s the killer?

Patron Saints of Nothing by Randy Ribay

All Jay wants to do his senior year is play video games. But then he learns that his cousin Jun is murdered in the Philippines, and Jay travels there to find out how the war on drugs has taken his cousin’s life.

Two Can Keep a Secret by Karen M. McManus

Ellery is sent to live with her grandmother in Echo Ridge, the place her aunt went missing, and the place where the Homecoming Queen was murdered 5 years ago. Now, someone is threatening to repeat the events of Homecoming, and Ellery realizes everyone is keeping secrets.

This is My America by Kim Johnson

Tracy’s dad has been in jail for a crime he didn’t commit, and Tracy is trying to get Innocence X, a non-profit organization, to help with his case. No luck. But when her brother Jamal, star track runner and student, is falsely convicted of murdering a white girl, Tracy takes matters into her own hands to find out the truth.

The Naturals (The Naturals, #1) by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Cassie is a natural — that is, a natural at reading people and finding the tiniest details to reveal someone’s motives and identity. She is recruited by the FBI and is sent to live in a home alongside other “naturals,” helping to solve crimes that require the gifts of these teens. When a new killer pops up, these housemates will have to use their gifts to survive.

Truly Devious (Truly Devious, #1) by Maureen Johnson

This slow-burn mystery revolves around the cold case of the kidnapping of Ellingham Academy founder Albert Ellingham’s wife and daughter by the mysterious “Truly Devious.” Stevie Bell is a true-crime aficionado starting her first year at the academy, and she has resolved to be the one who finally solves this cold case.

Use this list of YA mystery novels to help your students find their next great book.

12 Genre Book Reports Assignment

Love teaching with genres?

Help your students dive deeper into their reading with these 12 different genre-focused book report assignments. Each assignment enables students to showcase their creativity while meeting curriculum standards. This assignment covers both fiction and non-fiction books. The assignment structure rotates every three months helping students achieve proficiency, while still providing student choice. Assignments can be used in any order. A sample teaching schedule is provided.

Included Genres

  • Realistic Fiction
  • Mystery Fiction
  • Graphic Novel
  • Science Fiction
  • Biography & Memoirs
  • Historical Fiction
  • Classical Fiction (pre-1970)
  • Fantasy Fiction
  • Non-Fiction
  • Traditional Literature vs. Fractured Fairy Tales
  • Sports Fiction
  • Free Verse Fiction

Assignment Types:

  1. Written Response – critical thinking and written reflection assignment.
  2. Creative Choice Board – students are provided with 3 options and must select which creative option they want to produce.
  3. Oral Presentation – a book talk format assignment.
  4. Student-Created Lesson based on a non-fiction book
  5. Traditional Literature vs. Fractured Fairy Tales Comparison Assignment

Find the 12 Genres Book Reports resource on Shopify CAD or Teachers Pay Teachers USD.

You might also want to learn more about: 

For more great middle school books, check out this blog post – Best Middle School Book Recommendations. Also, check out some fantastic YA books in this blog post – High School Book Recommendations.

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