Best Clean Books for Teens and Tweens

Are you a book lover like me? I absolutely love to read, and I love fantasy book series. My teenage daughter is just like me, and we get super excited waiting for the next book in each of our favorite series to be published. We usually stick to juvenile literature because we prefer clean reads. We like a great story minus profanity and smutty story lines. You, too? Today I’ve collected my favorite book series into one place to create the ultimate list of the best clean books for teens and tweens! (Aren’t you super excited to find your next great read?)

The Ultimate Collection of the Best Clean Books for Teens and Tweens -- Great story lines without the garbage! {} Fantasty and adventure books series #books #bookclub #teenfiction #fantasybooks #cleanread

The Best Books for Teens and Tweens — Fantasy Book Series Part 1

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So, what inspired this post? The final book in the The Five Kingdoms book series, by Brandon Mull came out a few days ago. It’s called Time Jumpers, and we’ve been waiting for it forever! I think my daughter has actually been counting down the days. The day it came out, she texted me at 5:45 am (she has an early class) to remind me to please buy the book on Kindle so she could start it at school. She was finished before dinner, and now she’s chomping at the bit waiting for me to finish so she can talk about the ending! I love that my daughter loves to read, just like me! (More about that series later.) Clean books for teens are tough to find, so we’re always excited for the new ones.

I’ll try to give you a little summary about each series without giving away too much of the plot! These series are all very clean, but I will warn you about the amount of violence and other things you might find in the books.

Fablehaven, by Brandon Mull

* Books for teens and tweens (boys and girls)

Best Clean Books for Teens and Tweens - Fablehaven, by Brandon Mull {}

I’m putting Fablehaven first on the list because I think it’s my favorite book series. The rest of the books won’t be in any particular order, but I wanted to put my favorite first!

Brandon Mull does a fantastic job creating engaging characters amidst really cool plot lines. These stories center on Kendra and Seth, a brother and sister who are sent to visit their Grandparent’s nature preserve for the summer. Little do they know, the preserve is actually a secret sanctuary for mythical creatures, and their Grandparents are the caretakers. Throughout the series, Seth and Kendra delve deeper and deeper into the magical realm as they fight to save the preserve and ultimately the world from evil.

Each book is filled with a great adventure and really cool mythical creatures. Boys and girls will love these books. The reading level for these books is grades K-8, but older kids and grownups will enjoy the stories as well. The audiobooks for this series are very well done, and we enjoy listening to them in the car on long road trips. They keep the whole family entertained.

Great news! Brandon has already written the first book in the sequel series to Fablehaven. If you can’t get enough of this magical world (like me), you can keep reading about it in Dragonwatch!

Brandon also includes a readers guide with every one of his books, so if you like to talk to the kids about what they read, or if you’re looking for questions for a book club, he’s got you covered.

 Five Kingdoms, by Brandon Mull

* Books for teens and tweens (boys and girls)

Best Clean Books for Teens and Tweens - The Five Kingdoms Series, by Brandon Mull {}

Another series by Brandon Mull, Five Kindgoms, takes you to a completely different world — literally! (This is the series that just ended this week when the final book was published.) When Cole and his friends visit a haunted house on Halloween, they are kidnapped into another dimension. This new world consists of five different kingdoms (different magical powers exist in each kingdom). While Cole tries to rescue the kidnapped kids (and discovers how to use his new powers), he finds himself drawn into a plot to destroy all five kingdoms. Of course, he and his friends will have to save the world.

The Candy Shop Wars, by Brandon Mull

* Books for younger teens and tweens (boys and girls)

Best Clean Books for Teens and Tweens - The Candy Shop War, by Brandon Mull {}

Brandon Mull also wrote The Candy Shop Wars, a two-book series where kids get to save the day using candy that gives them magical powers, and Beyonders. While I highly recommend The Candy Shop Wars, I did not include the Beyonders series in this list because I found the violence a little bit gruesome. Teen and tween boys will love it, but it wasn’t my taste. (My daughter read this and scoffed that I thought the series was gruesome. She disagreed. She also reminded me that Brandon Mull announced that he will be adding more books to The Candy Shop Wars series soon!)

The Reckoners Series, by Brandon Sanderson

* Books for teens (boys and girls)

Best Clean Books for Teens and Tweens - The Reckoners Series, by Lisa Brandon Sanderson {}

My niece’s husband recommended these books to my daughter, and I am so glad he did. I read the whole series in about four days. I could not put it down! (I get the books on kindle and put my phone on text-to-speech so I can listen while I work.) Brandon Sanderson has several other series (Mistborn is probably his most well-known), but they are for older teens because there is quite a bit of killing and the writing is much more complex. They definitely aren’t uplifting! This series is definitely a lighter read. I loved it!!

Have you ever wondered what would happen if random people were given superpowers? You’d expect the world to be full of awesome heroes, right? Well, what if those superpowers filled them with rage and caused them all to go evil? A world full of super villains (Epics) and no heroes. That’s the world of The Reckoners. Who are the Reckoners? They’re the small group of people who has decided to fight back. When David joins their ranks with his crazy plan that they can actually kill the high epics, things will never be the same.

Brandon Sanderson has created the best characters in these books! I absolutely love David. He has a problem with metaphors, so he’s always coming up with these crazy comparisons that really make his character endearing. Definitely read these books!

This series is great for boys and girls, but is more for teens than tweens. There is a bit of innuendo in the discussions between David and his love interest, but it is pretty minor.

The Ranger’s Apprentice Series, by John Flanagan

* Books for teens and tweens (boys and girls)

Best Clean Books for Teens and Tweens - The Ranger's Apprentice Series, by John Flanagan {}

This series is super long, which I love because I hate it when a series ends. Don’t worry, though. This is nothing like those movie sequels where the first and last movie is great, but the middle one is a bomb. Each of these stories is a good one. You won’t be disappointed.

Will is an orphan at Castle Redmont. On Choosing Day, he hopes to be apprenticed to become a knight, but his hopes are dashed when he is not big enough. He is rescued from becoming a field worker when Halt, the Ranger, asks for him as an apprentice. Rangers are the intelligence and unofficial spies of the kingdom. As his apprentice, Will learns amazing skills and has fantastic adventures. Each book is a new adventure in a different part of the world.

These books may seem strange to be included in a fantasy collection, but you’ll find a few fantasy creatures and maybe even a hint of magic here and there. These are great stories with intricate plots and surprise endings. Boys and girls, teens or tweens will like The Ranger’s Apprentice series.

Flanagan wrote a two more stories as a prequel to this series. The Ranger’s Apprentice: The Early Years. In these books, you’ll learn the origin story of Will’s trainer, the legendary Halt.

The Brotherband Chronicles, by John Flanagan

* Books for teens and tweens (boys and girls)

Best Clean Books for Teens and Tweens - The Brotherband Chronicles, by John Flanagan{}When I finished The Ranger’s Apprentice series, I was sad because the series was so long that I really felt like I knew the characters. I was pleasantly surprised to find the companion series, The Brotherband Chronicles. I like this series even better than the first. These characters come from the land of Skandia (they remind me of Vikings) and live around the time that the characters from the other books are in their thirties or so. (There are even a few crossover books.)

The Skandian boys in these stories start out as a group of misfits. You know the type — the kids who are always picked last for the baseball team. Well, when these misfits are thrown together during Brotherband training, magic (and a lot of adventure and fun) happens. The characters in these books are so much fun. Because they’re all misfits, they make the best characters. I love the twins, Ulf and Wulf, who constantly bicker and whom no one can tell apart. They remind me a little bit of the twins in the How to Train Your Dragon movies.

This series is still in progress, so I guess we’ll all have to wait to see how it finally ends! Boys, girls, teens and tweens will enjoy the Brotherband Chronicles.

The Unwanteds, by Lisa McMann

* Books for teens and tweens (boys and girls)

Best Clean Books for Teens and Tweens - The Unwanteds Series, by Lisa McMann {}

Have you ever felt unloved or like you’re not good enough? In the Village of Quill, they take being unwanted to the extreme! At age 13, the youth are sorted into categories. The intelligent Wanteds go to University, and the artistic Unwanteds go to their death! When Alex is sorted into the Unwanteds and separated from his twin, he has a surprise in store when the busload of Unwanteds is taken to their execution. I don’t want to give away the story, but Alex finds out that being Unwanted is the best thing that ever happened to him. The Unwanteds series is full of magic and adventure as the kids find out how far creativity will take them. And, yes, they might just have to fight the bad guys and save the day in every book, too.

The Ascendance Trilogy by Jennifer A. Nielsen

* Books for teens and tweens (boys and girls)

Best Clean Books for Teens and Tweens - The Ascendance Trilogy, by Jennifer Nielsen {}

If you love surprise endings and plot twists and turns, you’ll love The Ascendance Trilogy. When Sage, a 14-year-old orphan is saved from punishment after stealing a roast, he expects to become a slave. Instead, he and two other boys are trained to impersonate a prince and must compete to help in a traitorous plot to take over the kingdom. One boy will be chosen to become the prince, and the other two will be executed. This is a great story that boys, girls, teens and tweens will enjoy.

I just realized that this is not a fantasy series, but it is a great adventure series, and I can’t leave it out!

Mark of the Thief by Jennifer A. Nielsen

* Books for teens and tweens (boys and girls)

Best Clean Books for Teens and Tweens - The Mark of the Thief, by Jennifer Nielsen {}

This next series, also by Jennifer A Nielsen, is definitely a fantasy series, and it’s just as great an adventure as her first series. Nic is a slave in the Roman empire, but he just can’t seem to act like one. He’s constantly getting into trouble. When his master forces him into a dangerous mine (one from which no slave has returned) in search of an amulet that once belonged to Julius Caesar, his life is turned upside down. He discovers a griffin who helps him escape captivity and discover a hidden power. Now it seems it’s up to him to save the empire in The Mark of the Thief.

Jennifer Nielsen has also written a few great stand-alone books and a series called The Underworld Chronicles that is great for younger readers.

Jack Blank Adventures by Matt Myklusch

* Books for teens and tweens (boys and girls)

Best Clean Books for Teens and Tweens - The Jack Blank Adventure Series, by Matt Myklusch {}

Jack Blank resides at St. Barnaby’s Home for the Hopeless, Abandoned, Forgotten, and Lost. Because strange things seem to happen when Jack is around, he never gets to leave and finds his only solace secretly reading forbidden old comic books. His life changes forever when he meets an emissary from a secret country called the Imagine Nation. Rescued from his bleak life and headed to an astonishing place where all the fantastic and unbelievable things in the world originate, he just might find out that the comic books are real.

The Jack Blank Adventures is a fun series that teens, tweens, boys and girls will enjoy.

The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer

* Books for teens and adults

Best Clean Books for Teens and Tweens - The Lunar Chronicles, by Marissa Meyer {}

Do the titles and book are for these books remind you of anything? Take some ordinary fairy tales and give them a technologically futuristic twist, and you’ve got The Lunar Chronicles. Before I go any further, let me stress that this series is for teens and adults. Not tweens. I do not recommend the prequel book, Fairest, for kids at all. It is much darker and covers some adult topics. Definitely read it yourself before you think of letting your kids read it. This series does contain more graphic violence than the other series I have listed. Read it and decide if it is right for your teen. (You’ll love it.)

If you think you’ve heard every possible version of Cinderella, think again! This Cinder doesn’t have a glass slipper. She’s a cyborg with a metal (and detachable foot). I’ll just let you guess what might happen to that foot at some point in the story. Scarlett? She’s not a helpless child lost in the woods off to visit her sick grandmother. She’s a tough, beautiful woman searching for her missing grandmother/business partner. She might just come across some human-mutant wolf men while she’s looking. Cress? A helpless woman stuck in a tower? Nope. More like a crackerjack computer genius stuck in a satellite orbiting the earth. And Winter  . . . is she the helpless beautiful daughter of an evil queen? Yes, but she’s a bit mentally unstable because she refuses to use her “gifts.”

Sound intriguing? How about when the lives of all four characters entwine in one grand adventure to save the planet. It’s an amazing ride!

See the disclaimer above. This series is not for tweens. Just teens and above.

Are you excited for your next read? I found so many great book series that I’m going to have to divide this post in half so that you won’t be scrolling forever! I still have ten+ more series to tell you about! Look for part 2 coming soon!

Thanks for stopping by today and letting me share my love of reading. This post has been in my thoughts forever. It’s about time I got it out there! While you’re here, be sure to check out more great ideas.

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  1. These sound like some fun books. I’ll have to get them for my kids. I don’t really care if books are super clean or not. I mean, I read It when I was in fifth grade, plus Judy Blume books, and some of those were pretty open!

    • Hi, Amber. Clean or not, these are some great stories. I like not having to worry about what my kids are reading. I like books for myself to be clean too, so to each his own! I remember reading some Judy Blume as a kid, too. Some were more shocking than others.

  2. Love this! My oldest son loves Fantasy and has read several of the series recommended. My problem is that I hate fantasy, so I hate to preread the books to make sure they’re clean, so I’m glad to have your recommendations (and will bookmark this page)!

    • So glad I can help, Corrie! I love fantasy, and my list of clean series just keeps growing and growing. I already have 12 more series to write about. This post was just getting too long. Look for part two coming soon!

  3. Heather @ Kraus House Mom says

    I’m going to show these to my kids. My son would love a couple of these series.

  4. I think it’s awesome to provide our kids with stories and novels that they’ll enjoy reading so they’ll read more. These are lovely recommendations for teens and tweens. I’m pretty sure they’re going to love it!

  5. What a great source of information for parents of teenagers this is! The teenage years leave you exhausted trying to figure out what will best suit them. Clean books help parents to present their teens with an alternative to what is out there today.

  6. These books are perfect for teenagers. They definitely love reading these fantasy stoies.

  7. What a great collection. I like to read as well. I’m now reading The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood. When I was a teen I love to read The Spook’s Apprentice by Joseph Delaney. I read all the books, and I was just like you, could not wait for the new book to appear.

  8. I came here looking for books for my daughter and there are some series I think I might want to read also!! LOL! I think my daughter will really enjoy the Lunar Chronicles (and I will also!)

  9. Thank you for this! My 11 tear old is a voracious reader and reads way above grade level. It is hard to find books/series that interest her that are also appropriate.

    • Definitely try Fablehaven! I think she’ll love it. When I write the part two of this series, there will be a few more that are more specific to girls, but my girls don’t care whether the stories are about a boy or a girl. They just love a good fantasy adventure story!

  10. These all look like great reads for teens, tweens and moms. My niece would love to read these. The toics are so appropriate. Thanks!

  11. These look like some great reads.

  12. Dee At My Dee Dee's Diary says

    I like the look of these. I think another great author for teens is rick riordan. His books are fantastic

  13. These books look like awesome adventures! I daughter would love these.

    • Thanks, Angela. They’re all great books. I always get the kindle additions from Amazon of the library and them I can read them, too! (My kids are all linked to my kindle account.)

  14. Tatanisha Worthey says

    I love some of these collections. I would love to check these out myself.

  15. Oh my gosh, these sounds an excellent list that we can check out. I love to read and I am also encouraging my son to love books.

    • Good for you, Chelle. It’s so important to help our kids learn to love to read. I’ve been successful with two out of three. My middle daughter definitely has other interests!

  16. LavandaMichelle says

    These books look so cool, I think I might want to read some myself! Ill tell my daughter about these, she can read so much in one day is ridiculous. Thanks for sharing!

  17. I don’t have a teen or tween however, I’d be up for the Lunar series. Seems like something I could get into! lol

  18. Great informative site. I’m really impressed after reading this blog post. I really appreciate the time and effort you spend to share this with us! I do hope to read more updates from you.

  19. A series called Red Queen is perfect for teens. I have not finished it yet, but I’m hooked!

  20. Mary Beth Timmons says

    This is a great post and your daughter sounds a lot like my brother and most of the book you have on this list sounds like my brother’s read them. I’m a picky reader, but I might try some of these. Also you should check out the ever after series it not totally hooking but still good enough to want to read the series over and over again which is perfect for quarantine. If your looking for more hooking books try keeper of the lost cities, in my opinion best series ever!

    • Thanks for the suggestions, Mary Beth! Keeper of the Lost Cities is my family’s favorite, too. (I even made t-shirts.) I originally meant to write a second half to this list —I have a ton to add. Thanks for the reminder to get it done!

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