Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Top Ten Books Dealing With Tough Subjects

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme where book bloggers come up with their Top Ten list for a particular book topic. Here at Looking at the Panacea, Chantelle and Nara each pick their top five to give a combined list of ten. This week's topic is:

Top Ten Books Dealing With Tough Subjects 

1. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

This book definitely deals with some serious issues- cancer, death, the oblivion....but it does it in a way that isn't at all intimidating, with plenty of humour and general awesomesauceness! Also: John Green. JOHN GREEN.

2. The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay
Dealing with revenge and trauma and the "miracle of second chances", this book had one the most realistic romances I have ever read. It is amazing. If you haven't read this book, seriously, go get yourself a copy.

3. Easy by Tammara Webber
The tough subject in this book is the issue of sexual assault. It's encouraging to see how main character Jacqueline deals with it in the novel- with the help of a certain character named Lucas, of course ;)

4. Speechless by Hannah Harrington
A beautifully written novel with the important message that redemption is always possible, Speechless deals with bullying, discrimination and homosexuality.

5. If He Had Been With Me by Laura Nowlin
This book was released quite recently- and I was completely wowed by how poignant it was. From the blurb, it is quite obvious that the tough issue we are dealing with in this one is that of death. I felt that reading this book was a bit like watching a horror scene in a movie- you don't want to watch, but you don't want to look away either.


1. Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

What's a tougher subject than the much ignored WWII concentration camps in Siberia where Stalin sent millions of people to die cultivating land that was inhabitable... basically not much! Ruta Sepetys does an absolutely courageous job in writing a story about survivors, which isn't sugar coated, and I applaud her.

2. Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein
Another WWII addition, but Elizabeth Wein wrote a mindblowing literary monster. It's a book that could not ever be made into a movie, it's a book about a Scottish spy and her best friend Maddy. It's a book about being captured by Nazi Germans, being tortured, being starved, and needing to spill everything and betray everyone in order to survive.

3. Twisted by Marjorie Brody
Rape... yeah, this book goes there. It also touches on many many other tough subjects but for want of not spoiling the plot, I won't say them here. But Marjorie Brody handles it extremely tactfully, respectfully, and purposefully. Definitely worth a read. I also reviewed it!

4. The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson
In a less than ideal world, seventeen year old Lennie Walker's sister dies. This novel is a poetic tale of grief, love and courage. Heart-achingly awe-inspiring.

5. Butter by Erin Jade Lange
Okay, I admit, I seem to be adding this book on to every possible list, and that's because I have been, but it's seriously that good! It tackles obesity, bullying, and teenage suicide in a captivating thriller that is honest and confronting. Also, US RESIDENTS HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO WIN A SIGNED COPY!!!!! (Check our giveaways in the left side bar, and my review!)


  1. The Fault in Our Stars made my list as well!!

    My Top Ten

    1. TFIOS is just an all round amazing book! I love the way the John deals with serious issues in a way that's not excessively heavy :)

  2. I really want to read If He Had Been With Me - I just got it from the library, so I should be getting to it soon. I read about 100 pages of Easy and then stopped for some reason; I'd really like to start it over and read it all the way through this time. Thanks for stopping by my TTT. :)

  3. Between Shades of Gray and Code Name Verity were two of my favourite novels last year. Easy also made my list, in large part because of Jacqueline and how she deals with the aftermath of her assault.

  4. I've seen Butter on two lists now so I'm off to join in the giveaway!

    Here's my list of top ten books that deal with tough subjects.

  5. Easy made my list too! And, I have The Sea of Tranquility waiting for me on my Kindle right now!

    Here's my list this week --> TTT @ Krista's Dust Jacket

    1. The Sea of Tranquility is quite good! Definitely worth reading :)

  6. TFiOS, The Sea of Tranquility, Easy, Code Name Verity and The Sky is Everywhere are favorites of mine too. I'm afraid to read Between Shades of Gray, but hope to read it this year. Great list.

  7. I was trying to remember which book I left off my list, and that book was Easy - which makes no sense because I just reviewed it over the weekend. *kicks self*

    Great list! I also had The Fault in Our Stars on my list, and I'm sure we're not the only ones :)

  8. I'm so happy to see If He had Been with Me on your list! Thanks! TFiOS is as absolutely amazing book, and I'm going to have to check out The Sky is Everywhere.

    1. If He Had Been With Me was an amazing book! I'm so glad you wrote it! I mean, it was completely heartbreaking, but at least we were somewhat prepared for it with the blurb and such :)

  9. Great lists! I've only read TFIOS, Sea of Tranquility, & Easy[and loved them all]. I can't wait to read If He Had Been With Me & The Sky is Everywhere, they sound like the kind of heartbreaking books I love.

    New bloglovin' follower. :]

    Here's my Top Ten!

    -Kait @ The Reading Vixens