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The Best Superhero Books for Teens

The Best Superhero Books for Teens

Everyone loves a good superhero story. Whether it’s in comics, movies, or cartoon series, whether it’s Marvel or DC, Batman, Wonder Woman, Superman, Spiderman or Wolverine, heroes continue to entertain and inspire countless people – especially teenage readers. That’s why we’ve come up with a list of some of the best superhero (and supervillain!) books for teens. Because everyone knows the Justice League and the Avengers, but not everyone has read about a teenage hero that’s still figuring things out, just like how most of us are. So check out this list, and see if you find a new favorite superhero!

Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson

   How far would you go for revenge if someone killed your father?
   If someone destroyed your city?
   If everything you ever loved was taken from you?
   David Charleston will go to any lengths to stop Steelheart. But to exact revenge in Steelheart’s world, David will need the Reckoners—a shadowy group of rebels bent on maintaining justice.
   And it turns out that the Reckoners might just need David too.

What do the readers say?

“EXCELLENT book, for anyone of any age. Fascinating system of magic, as in any Sanderson book. I read it as a 24 year old and loved it, and, when I taught a creative writing program, one of my 5th grade students also read it and loved it. Really exciting, easy read! If you like super heroes, fast-paced stories, and fun (and funny) main characters, this book is perfect for you!” – LightfingerAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

Please Don’t Tell My Parents I’m A Supervillain by Richard Roberts

Penelope Akk wants to be a superhero. She’s got superhero parents. She’s got the ultimate mad science power, filling her life with crazy gadgets even she doesn’t understand. She has two super-powered best friends. In middle school, the line between good and evil looks clear. In real life, nothing is that clear. All it takes is one hero’s sidekick picking a fight, and Penny and her friends are labeled supervillains. In the process, Penny learns a hard lesson about villainy: She’s good at it. Criminal masterminds, heroes in power armor, bottles of dragon blood, alien war drones, shapeshifters and ghosts, no matter what the super powered world throws at her, Penny and her friends come out on top. They have to. If she can keep winning, maybe she can clear her name before her mom and dad find out.

What do the readers say?

” I can’t gush about this book enough, and I am going to do a rare thing and re-read it immediately because I enjoyed it so much and I know reading it again will be great. I really wish I were a great artist because this is a book that really deserves loads of great fan art :D” – MooncatX aka Bliss CrimsonAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

Hero by Perry Moore

The last thing in the world Thom Creed wants is to add to his father’s pain, so he keeps secrets. Like that he has special powers. And that he’s been asked to join the League the very organization of superheroes that spurned his dad. But the most painful secret of all is one Thom can barely face himself: he’s gay. But becoming a member of the League opens up a new world to Thom. There, he connects with a misfit group of aspiring heroes, including Scarlett, who can control fire but not her anger; Typhoid Larry, who can make anyone sick with his touch; and Ruth, a wise old broad who can see the future. Like Thom, these heroes have things to hide; but they will have to learn to trust one another when they uncover a deadly conspiracy within the League. To survive, Thom will face challenges he never imagined. To find happiness, he’ll have to come to terms with his father’s past and discover the kind of hero he really wants to be.

What do the readers say?

“I picked this book up on a Saturday evening, just before I had to get ready to go out. And I literally got to the end of the first page and I canceled my plans for the night. I could predict what a Saturday night in downtown would be like, but I had no idea where this book would take me.” – Kindle Customer [Review from Amazon]

The Rise of Renegade X by Chelsea M. Campbell

Sixteen-year-old Damien Locke has a plan: major in messing with people at the local supervillain university and become a professional evil genius, just like his supervillain mom. But when he discovers the shameful secret she’s been hiding all these years, that the one-night stand that spawned him was actually with a superhero, everything gets messed up. His father’s too moral for his own good, so when he finds out Damien exists, he actually wants him to come live with him and his goody-goody superhero family. Damien gets shipped off to stay with them in their suburban hellhole, and he has only six weeks to prove he’s not a hero in any way, or else he’s stuck living with them for the rest of his life, or until he turns eighteen, whichever comes first. To get out of this mess, Damien has to survive his dad’s “flying lessons” that involve throwing him off the tallest building in the city–despite his nearly debilitating fear of heights–thwarting the eccentric teen scientist who insists she’s his sidekick, and keeping his supervillain girlfriend from finding out the truth. But when Damien uncovers a dastardly plot to turn all the superheroes into mindless zombie slaves, a plan hatched by his own mom, he discovers he cares about his new family more than he thought. Now he has to choose: go back to his life of villainy and let his family become zombies, or stand up to his mom and become a real hero.

What do the readers say?

“Well-rounded, fascinating characters with believable, difficult problems mix surprisingly well with a setting that explores and subverts many of the tropes of comic book fiction. I would happily read a book about Damien Locke and his friends reading the phone book. Because somehow, they would make it funny, touching, and awesome.” – J.J. Robson, Amazon user. [Review from Amazon]

Powerless by Matthew Cody

Twelve-year-old Daniel, the new kid in town, soon learns the truth about his nice—but odd—new friends: one can fly, another can turn invisible, yet another controls electricity. Incredible. The superkids use their powers to secretly do good in the town, but they’re haunted by the fact that the moment they turn thirteen, their abilities will disappear—along with any memory that they ever had them. Is a memory-stealing supervillain sapping their powers?

The answers lie in a long-ago meteor strike, a World War II–era comic book (Fantastic Futures, starring the first superhero, Johnny Noble), the green-flamed Witch Fire, a hidden Shroud cave, and—possibly, unbelievably—“powerless” regular-kid Daniel himself.

What do the readers say?

“Matthew Cody has crafted a world that will appeal to young and old readers alike. As I was reading it (I enjoyed it so much I finished the book in one night) I was reminded of how the first Harry Potter book really hooked me by drawing me back to the bygone days of my youth. Who wouldn’t have enjoyed growing up in magical world of wizards, witches, and monsters, or in Cody’s equally interesting world of mysterious glowing meteorites, multiple secret generations of kid superheroes, and a diabolical supervillain? If you or your children enjoyed the Harry Potter books, I highly recommend Powerless.” – John PingoAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

Gone by Michael Grant

In the blink of an eye, everyone disappears. Gone. Except for the young. There are teens, but not one single adult. Just as suddenly, there are no phones, no internet, no television. No way to get help. And no way to figure out what’s happened. Hunger threatens. Bullies rule. A sinister creature lurks. Animals are mutating. And the teens themselves are changing, developing new talents—unimaginable, dangerous, deadly powers—that grow stronger by the day. It’s a terrifying new world. Sides are being chosen, a fight is shaping up. Townies against rich kids. Bullies against the weak. Powerful against powerless. And time is running out: on your birthday, you disappear just like everyone else. . . .

What do the readers say?

“The story was fast-paced and exciting. Characters were well thought out and real, though a little predictable. The only thing that bothered me was that frequently the story would change scenes with no page break or any visual clue that the story had changed scenes – that definitely interrupted the flow of my reading as I had to pause to figure it out. Good clean story and will definitely be purchasing the rest of the series!” – AlisonAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

Sidekicks by Jack D. Ferraiolo

Batman has Robin, Wonder Woman has Wonder Girl, and Phantom Justice has Bright Boy, a.k.a. Scott Hutchinson, an ordinary schoolkid by day and a superfast, superstrong sidekick by night, fighting loyally next to his hero. But after an embarrassing incident involving his too-tight spandex costume, plus some signs that Phantom Justice may not be the good guy he pretends to be, Scott begins to question his role. With the help of a fellow sidekick, once his nemesis, Scott must decide if growing up means being loyal or stepping boldly to the center of things.

What do the readers say?

“What a great story! Traditional super hero story meets teen hormones and told from the sidekick’s point of view. If that weren’t enough, stand the traditional labeling of ‘good’ and ‘evil’ on it’s head and this is one version of the story you might come up with.” – YesterdayAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

V Is for Villain by Peter Moore

Brad Baron is used to looking lame compared to his older brother, Blake. Though Brad’s basically a genius, Blake is a superhero in the elite Justice Force. And Brad doesn’t measure up at his high school, either, where powers like super-strength and flying are the norm. So when Brad makes friends who are more into political action than weight lifting, he’s happy to join a new crew-especially since it means spending more time with Layla, a girl who may or may not have a totally illegal, totally secret super-power. And with her help, Brad begins to hone a dangerous new power of his own.

But when they’re pulled into a web of nefarious criminals, high-stakes battles, and startling family secrets, Brad must choose which side he’s on. And once he does, there’s no turning back.

What do the readers say?

“The book itself was very well written. The storyline is new and shakes up the typical superhero progression. Very interesting read.” – Sydney K. WicklundAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

I Am Princess X by Cherie Priest

Once upon a time, two best friends created a princess together. Libby drew the pictures, May wrote the tales, and their heroine, Princess X, slayed all the dragons and scaled all the mountains their imaginations could conjure.
Once upon a few years later, Libby was in the car with her mom, driving across the Ballard Bridge on a rainy night. When the car went over the side, Libby passed away, and Princess X died with her.
Once upon a now: May is sixteen and lonely, wandering the streets of Seattle, when she sees a sticker slapped in a corner window.
Princess X?
When May looks around, she sees the Princess everywhere: Stickers. Patches. Graffiti. There’s an entire underground culture, focused around a webcomic at IAmPrincessX.com. The more May explores the webcomic, the more she sees disturbing similarities between Libby’s story and Princess X online. And that means that only one person could have started this phenomenon — her best friend, Libby, who lives.

What do the readers say?

“This book was really good a little creepy but full of twists and turns that will keep you wanting more. I couldn’t put it down and stayed up all night reading it. Hope you enjoy reading it too!” – MattAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

Lois Lane: Fallout by Gwenda Bond

Lois Lane is starting a new life in Metropolis. Lois has lived all over – and seen all kinds of things. But now her family is putting down roots in the big city, and Lois is determined to fit in. Stay quiet. Keep out of trouble. As soon as she steps into her new high school, though, she can see it won’t be that easy. A group known as the Warheads is making life miserable for another girl at school. They’re messing with her mind somehow, via the high-tech immersive videogame they all play. Not cool. Armed with her wit and her new snazzy job as a reporter, Lois has her sights set on solving this mystery. But sometimes it’s all a bit much. Thank goodness for her maybe-more-than-a friend, someone she knows only by his screenname, SmallvilleGuy…

What do the readers say?

“Bond brilliantly captures Lois’s voice and why she is and has always been a character to stand up for those who cannot stand up for themselves. It is easy to see the connection between Lois and the never-really-present Clark Kent and why these two really are wonderful alone but are only better together.” – J. ManifoldAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

Illusive by Emily Lloyd-Jones

When the deadly MK virus swept across the planet, a vaccine was created to stop the epidemic, but it came with some unexpected side effects. A small percentage of the population developed superhero-like powers, and Americans suffering from these so-called adverse effects were given an ultimatum: Serve the country or be declared a traitor.
 
Some people chose a third option: live a life of crime.
 
Seventeen-year-old Ciere Giba has the handy ability to change her appearance at will. She’s what’s known as an illusionist. She’s also a thief. After crossing a gang of mobsters, Ciere must team up with a group of fellow super powered criminals on a job that most would have considered impossible: a hunt for the formula that gave them their abilities. It was supposedly destroyed years ago–but what if it wasn’t?
 
Government agents are hot on their trail, and the lines between good and bad, us and them, and freedom and entrapment are blurred as Ciere and the rest of her crew become embroiled in a deadly race that could cost them their lives.

What do the readers say?

“Horror, Sci Fi, Comedy all these genres together in one book Illusive! Once you read two pages your automatically hooked. Read Illusive by Emily Lloyd-Jones.” – Sean SagristanoAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

Being Jamie Baker by Kelly Oram

An accident that should end in tragedy instead gives seventeen-year-old Jamie Baker a slew of uncontrollable superhuman abilities.

To keep her secret safe Jamie socially exiles herself, earning the title of Rocklin High’s resident ice queen. But during a supercharged encounter with star quarterback Ryan Miller she literally kisses anonymity goodbye. Now the annoyingly irresistible Ryan will stop at nothing to melt the heart of the ice queen and find out what makes her so special.

Unfortunately, Ryan is not the only person on to her secret. Will Jamie learn to contain her unstable powers before being discovered by the media or turned into a government lab rat?

More importantly, can she throw Ryan Miller off her trail before falling in love with him?

What do the readers say?

“This book had me laughing, crying, and holding on to every word. I would recommend it to any fans of Young Adult Romance with a twist of Fantasy. Fans of superheroes would enjoy this read as well. Even though Jamie has superpowers and I don’t, she was still someone I could relate to.” – BookNerdAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

Dark Star by Bethany Frenette

Audrey Whitticomb’s mother is the most powerful superhero in Twin Cities, and that’s why she always feels safe. But when something that’s not human lures her into the night air, she discovers a startling truth: her mother doesn’t just stop criminals. She fights Harrowers – merciless beings who were trapped Beneath eons ago. Some have managed to claw their way into the world, and they want Audrey dead because she’s one of the Kin. But Audrey has powers of her own. She can read someone else’s mind and glimpse the future, and if she’s able to get close enough to the Harrower masquerading as human, Patrick Tigue, she could use her Knowing to figure out his next move. But it won’t be easy, not if Leon, her mother’s bossy and attractive sidekick has anything to do with it – because he won’t let Audrey out of his sight. When an unthinkable betrayal puts Minneapolis in terrible danger, Audrey discovers a wild, untamed power within herself. It may be the key to saving herself, her family, and her city. Or it may be the force that destroys everything-and everyone-she loves.

What do the readers say?

“A coworker lent me his copy of this book and it is fantastic; the dialogue is very down to earth-conversations you would hear from every day people. The storyline is unique and absorbing and I highly recommend this book. I am looking forward to the next book and hope it comes out soon.” – the gormAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

Dangerous by Shannon Hale

When Maisie Danger Brown nabbed a spot at a NASA-like summer boot camp, she never expected to uncover a conspiracy that would change her life forever.

And she definitely didn’t plan to fall in love.

But now there’s no going back-Maisie’s the only thing standing between the Earth and annihilation. She must become the hero the world needs. The only problem is: how does a regular girl from Salt Lake City do that, exactly? It’s not as though there’s a handbook for this sort of thing. It’s up to Maisie to come up with a plan-and find the courage to carry it out-before she loses her heart . . . and her life.

What do the readers say?

“I loved this book! I love how original it was and I love that the author didn’t dumb down the language to a YA level even though it’s supposed to be a YA novel. I loved how it was complicated to the point of downright frustrating at times. (I couldn’t decide who was good and who was bad!) I listened to this novel “on tape” and for the first time since Harry Potter, I liked the narrator (fun, nasal voice that that is awesome!) and I think she did an awesome job too!” – MelissaAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

Super Human by Michael Owen Carroll

Four thousand years ago the world’s first super human walked the earth. Possessing the strength of one hundred men, skin impervious to attack, and the ability to read minds, this immortal being used his power to conquer and enslave nations. Now plans are in motion that will transport this super human to the present, where he’ll usher in a new age of tyranny unlike anything the world has ever seen.

Determined to stand against them, using powers they’ve only just begun to master, is a ragtag group of young heroes. For them this first test may be their greatest . . . and last.

What do the readers say?

“One of the most engaging reads in recent memory. Very few books manage to capture the feel of a true superhero story. Superhuman manages to do this with ease. highly recommend for anyone whos ever heard of superheroes” – Donald WyattAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

A Hero at the End of the World by Erin Claiborne

Sixteen year-old Ewan Mao knows that it’s his destiny to kill the evil tyrant whose dark reign has terrorized Britain for as long as he can remember. He’s just a normal boy, but Ewan is confident that he has exactly what it takes to be a hero. Until the moment comes – and it’s Oliver Abrams, his best friend, who defeats the villain for him. Five years later, while Ewan is living at home and working a minimum wage job. Oliver, meanwhile, has a job as an Unusual in the government’s Serious Magical Crimes Agency, the life he and Ewan always dreamed of. A routine investigation leads him and his partner, Sophie Stuart, to uncover a dangerous and powerful cult – one that seems to have drawn his former best friend into a plot to end the world.

What do the readers say?

“Imagine if Ron Weasley killed Voldemort and then add giant chickens, German cults and disco balls of doom; now you have A Hero at the End of the World. A funny, magical, earnest and engaging read of the trials of Ewan Mao, a kid who’s destiny didn’t quite pan out. Written by Erin Claiborne, this is an absolutely fantastic and imaginative debut novel.” – JenniferAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

Rise of the Heroes by Andy Briggs

Surfing the net during a lightning storm has amazing consequences for a group of teenage friends. Superhero powers are theirs at the click of a mouse! Trouble is, they don’t know what the powers will be until they try them out …But super powers carry super responsibilities. When a weather-altering, world-conquering supervillain kidnaps their mum, they have to decide: save her …or save the world! ‘Rise of the Heroes’ is the first book in the brilliant new series ‘HERO.COM’ – the perfect antidote to the anti-series ‘VILLAIN.NET’, also by screenwriter Andy Briggs. Which side are you on?

What do the readers say?

“Ultimately I quite liked the novel. The story is an unique take on kid heroes and superhero organizations. It contains references to its sister series, Villain.net, helping give the sense of a bigger world.” – MelnikAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

Soon I Will Be Invincible by Austin Grossman

Doctor Impossible—evil genius, would-be world conqueror—languishes in prison. Shuffling through the cafeteria line with ordinary criminals, he wonders if the smartest man in the world has done the smartest thing he could with his life. After all, he’s lost every battle he’s ever fought. But this prison won’t hold him forever.

Fatale—half woman, half high-tech warrior—used to be an unemployed cyborg. Now, she’s a rookie member of the world’s most famous super-team, the Champions. But being a superhero is not all flying cars and planets in peril—she learns that in the locker rooms and dive bars of superherodom, the men and women (even mutants) behind the masks are as human as anyone.

What do the readers say?

“Is still as wonderful on the 3rd read as on the 1st, even more so, the characters, the pace, the fabulous worldbuilding. Why isn’t Netflix or HBO optioning the hell out of this?” – LimonDudeAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

Vicious by V.E. Schwab

Victor and Eli started out as college roommates―brilliant, arrogant, lonely boys who recognized the same sharpness and ambition in each other. In their senior year, a shared research interest in adrenaline, near-death experiences, and seemingly supernatural events reveals an intriguing possibility: that under the right conditions, someone could develop extraordinary abilities. But when their thesis moves from the academic to the experimental, things go horribly wrong.

Ten years later, Victor breaks out of prison, determined to catch up to his old friend (now foe), aided by a young girl whose reserved nature obscures a stunning ability. Meanwhile, Eli is on a mission to eradicate every other super-powered person that he can find―aside from his sidekick, an enigmatic woman with an unbreakable will. Armed with terrible power on both sides, driven by the memory of betrayal and loss, the archnemeses have set a course for revenge―but who will be left alive at the end?

What do the readers say?

“I LOVED this book! I really enjoyed how flawed many of the characters were.I really liked how well written they all were, but especially Eli. So many books tell you who the bad guy is and tell you they are scary, etc, but don’t actually make you feel it. You definitely feel it in Vicious.” – The Blonde Likes BooksAmazon user. [Review from Amazon]

H.I.V.E. by Mark Walden

Otto Malpense has managed to run the orphanage where he lives, and has come up with a clever plan to trick the most powerful man in the country. And he’s only thirteen years old. He’s the perfect candidate to become the world’s next supervillain, so it only makes sense that he gets handpicked by H.I.V.E. – the Higher Institute of Villainous Education. The students have been kidnapped and brought to a secluded island inside a seemingly active volcano, where the school has resided for decades. All the kids are elite – extremely athletic, technically advanced, and the smartest in the country. They’re to study Villainy Studies, Stealth, and Evasion 101, inside a place of marble rooms, floodlit hangars, and steel doors. But there’s a catch, and Otto realizes this soon: that in the six-year program, leaving is not an option. With the help of his new friends, Otto plans to achieve what has never been done before: break out of H.I.V.E.

What do the readers say?

“My daughter and I both enjoy reading these books. The idea that a group of super villains actually ends up doing more good for the world, rather than evil, is a fun one to explore.” – Kindle Customer [Review from Amazon]

Did we miss any of your favorite YA superhero and supervillain books? Let us know!

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