The Young Adult genre has grown to include so many different sub-genres that it now encompasses almost any type of story.  Books containing elements of Science Fiction, Fantasy, Supernatural, Historical and many other genres can feature young characters and fall under the Young Adult umbrella.  And one of the greatest things about this genre is that if you find one book that you like, many times there will be an entire series of books that go along with it.

Trivia question: What real-life person connects Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and The Da Vinci Code?  Read to the bottom of this post for the answer. 

      In no particular order (and trying not to reveal too many details), here are some of my favorite YA series:
The Mortal Instruments, by Cassandra Clare
     I’m listing this one first because it isn’t finished yet — the final book of the series is due out in late May, 2014.  With some binge reading, you still have time to get through the first five volumes before then.   The plot involves angels, demons, vampires, werewolves and more.  In my opinion, readers at the higher end of the YA age spectrum are the best audience for this series. The first volume has already been released as a motion picture.
      This underrated series may also have more appeal to the older end of the YA spectrum due to its complex plot.  The feature of this series that I enjoyed the most is how the author weaves mythical and historical characters into his story.
Leviathan trilogy, by Scott Westerfeld
     This three-book series tells an alternate world’s version of World War I.  The German forces, called Clankers, live in a mechanical society and use machines to do their fighting.  The British faction, known as Darwinists, uses specially evolved organisms for both transport and battle.  This was my first time reading steampunk fiction and I don’t think it will be my last.
     The original five-volume series tells an entertaining story of Greek gods and their offspring with humor and drama.  Riordan has also written The Kane Chronicles(concerning Egyptian gods) and Heroes of Olympus featuring many of the Percy Jackson characters plus additional characters based on Roman mythology. This is a perfect series for the younger end of the YA age group.  The first two books have been made into movies.

Alex Rider series, by Anthony Horowitz

Action, adventure, and villains worthy of James Bond are standard features in this series about teen spy Alex Rider.  Appropriate for all ages.  The first volume of the series, Stormbreaker, had been made into a movie.

Hunger Games trilogy, by Suzanne Collins

     You’re probably well aware of the popular movies based on the first two books in this series.  If you’re into distopian worlds and heartless tyrants, then this is the series for you.

Answer to trivia question:  Nicholas Flamel owns the Sorcerer’s Stone in the first Harry Potter book, and is one of the Grand Masters of the Priory of Sion in The Da Vinci Code.