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Recommended Historical Fiction for Teens

From World War II to the Wild Wild West, step back in time with these fantastic historical fiction titles. 

Burn baby burn by Meg Medina

During the summer of 1977 when New York City is besieged by arson, a massive blackout, and a serial killer named Son of Sam, seventeen-year-old Nora must also face her family's financial woes, her father's absence, and her brother's growing violence.

Code name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

In 1943, a British fighter plane crashes in Nazi-occupied France and the survivor tells a tale of friendship, war, espionage, and great courage as she relates what she must to survive while keeping secret all that she can.

After being taught in a boarding school run by whites that Navajo is a useless language, Ned Begay and other Navajo men are recruited by the Marines to become Code Talkers, sending messages during World War II in their native tongue.

Copper sun by Sharon M. Draper

Two fifteen-year-old girls--one a slave and the other an indentured servant--escape their Carolina plantation and try to make their way to Fort Moses, Florida, a Spanish colony that gives sanctuary to slaves.

Crossing Ebenezer Creek by Tonya Bolden

Freed from slavery, Mariah and her young brother Zeke join Sherman's march through Georgia, where Mariah meets a free black named Caleb and dares to imagine the possibility of true love, but hope can come at a cost.

Dreamland burning by Jennifer Latham

"When Rowan finds a skeleton on her family's property, investigating the brutal, century-old murder leads to painful discoveries about the past. Alternating chapters tell the story of William, another teen grappling with the racial firestorm leading up to the 1921 Tulsa race riot, providing some clues to the mystery"--.

Fallen angels by Walter Dean Myers

Seventeen-year-old Richie Perry, just out of his Harlem high school, enlists in the Army in the summer of 1967 and spends a devastating year on active duty in Vietnam.

Flygirl by Sherri L Smith

During World War II, a light-skinned African American girl "passes" for white in order to join the Women Airforce Service Pilots.

Vowing to make his yearlong escapade across Europe his last hurrah before taking over the family estate, Henry "Monty" Montague and his best friend Percy find themselves in the middle of a dangerous manhunt involving pirates and highwaymen.

The librarian of Auschwitz by Antonio Iturbe

Follows Dita Kraus from age fourteen, when she is put in charge of a few forbidden books at Auschwitz concentration camp, through the end of World War II and beyond. Based on a true story.

Marie, dancing by Carolyn Meyer

A fictionalized autobiography of Marie Van Goethem, the impoverished student from the Paris Opéra ballet school who became the model for Edgar Degas's famous sculpture, "The Little Dancer.".

My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand

On the eve of her marriage to a stranger, sixteen-year-old Lady Jane Grey is swept in a conspiracy to usurp the throne from her cousin.

Out of darkness by Ashley Hope Pérez

Loosely based on a school explosion that took place in New London, Texas in 1937, this is the story of two teenagers: Naomi, who is Mexican, and Wash, who is black, and their dealings with race, segregation, love, and the forces that destroy people.

Outrun the moon by Stacey Lee

"On the eve of the San Francisco Earthquake of 1906, Mercy Wong--daughter of Chinese immigrants--is struggling to hold her own among the spoiled heiresses at prestigious St. Clare's School. When tragedy strikes, everyone must band together to survive"--.

"As World War II draws to a close, refugees try to escape the war's final dangers, only to find themselves aboard a ship with a target on its hull"--.

Vengeance road by Erin Bowman

"When her father is killed by the notorious Rose Riders for a mysterious journal that reveals the secret location of a gold mine, eighteen-year-old Kate Thompson disguises herself as a boy and takes to the gritty plains looking for answers--and justice"--.

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