Friday, July 27, 2012

Adventure Stories For Young Adults Of All Ages

Some of the best adventure fiction written today is published as being for "Young Adults", tweenagers and teenagers. These stories find an audience far beyond that age range, since everyone can appreciate a good story well told!

For classic "old-school" adventure with a modern twist it is hard to do better than Kenneth Oppel's Matt Cruse series.

The series starts off in grand midshipman style: Matt, in the crow's nest, spots a derelict vessel. Only the crow's nest is the observation dome on a zeppelin, and the derelict vessel is a ragged balloon carrying a dying man and a journal hinting at adventures to come...

Throw in a spunky and brilliant young woman, hair-raising peril, and - yes! - pirates, and you have page-turning stories with a steampunk twist that will have you wanting the next book in the series immediately.

Wonderful adventure stories for the whole family to read together.

The Matt Cruse series:

1. Airborn (2004)
2. Skybreaker (2005)
3. Starclimber (2009)

Kenneth Oppel also writes the popular Silverwing series, fantasy about an ancient rivalry between bats and owls.


The name James Bond has been synonymous with action adventure since Ian Fleming created the character in 1953. Fleming's fourteen books about the character have been the material for many popular movies, and several other authors have written further Bond adventures since Fleming's death.

Author Charlie Higson presents the Young Bond Adventures, revealing that young James had an adventurous life long before serving the Crown.

1. Silverfin (2005)
2. BloodFever (2006)
3. Double or Die (2007)
4. Hurricane Gold (2007)
5. By Royal Command (2008)

Danger Society: The Young Bond Dossier (2009)

It seems unlikely that an adventure story could start with the theft of a bag of sand. Unless the sand is very special sand, and the story is in the capable hands of Brandon Sanderson.

Even more unlikely is the name of the hero of the stories: Alcatraz Smedry, a 13-year-old boy with a knack for breaking things. And more unlikely yet are the villains of the piece: librarians! Evil librarians? Surely not!

But in Alcatraz versus the Evil Librarians all manner of unlikely things seem possible, from Crystin Knights to Oculators. And in the rest of the Alcatraz Smedry series the adventures come fast and furious. And always unlikely.

The series is also something of a handbook for writing; Sanderson tells you just what he is going to do with the story and why, making a partner of the reader even as he develops the tale. And there's all sorts of wonky humor throughout.

Join Alcatraz, Grandpa Smedry (whose talent is arriving late), Alcatraz's cousin Sing (whose talent is falling down at the right moment), and Crystin Knight Bastille in a series of wild adventures that keep you guessing and gasping.

1. Alcatraz Versus The Evil Librarians (2007)
2. Alcatraz Versus the Scrivener's Bones (2008)
3. Alcatraz Versus the Knights of Crystallia (2009)
4. Alcatraz Versus the Shattered Lens (2010)

Brandon Sanderson also writes the Mistborn series, has written books in the Robert Jordan Wheel of Time series, and has published the first book in the Stormlight Archive series.

Brandon Sanderson is scheduled to be the Guest of Honor at Bubonicon, Albuquerque's own annual science fiction and fantasy convention, August 24-26, 2012. 

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