The best young adult literature from 1967

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The Owl Service deeply freaked me out as a teenager. There seemed to be so much hinted at, a level of meaning that I could sense but couldn’t quite see. I keep on meaning to re-read it.

I used to make a ritual of reading The Dark is Rising every Christmas, but my copy disappeared some years ago. It had a better cover than any edition I’ve seen since, which makes its loss particularly galling:

John Christopher, as well as writing the Tripods trilogy, also wrote the decidedly not-YA The Death of Grass, which pisses all over John Wyndham when it comes to bleak post-apocalyptic fiction.

I was going to ask “why no Robert Westall?”, but then realised he fell past the OP’s 1973 cut-off. I remember being impressed with both The Wind Eye and Futuretrack Five (which had sex in it! Teenage brain both shocked and excited); I think I abandoned The Scarecrows for being too scary.

Cormier’s I Am the Cheese also falls outside the OP’s date bracket, and also deeply, deeply weirded me out.

I was a kid in the 60s and somehow missed all of these (though I knew of the existence of the Konigsburg book). I wonder if the author of The Brothers Bloom had ever read The Great Brain? The kids-conning-kids theme seems very similar.

Along the lines of I am the Cheese is Jay Bennett’s Deathman, Do Not Follow Me (1968), which actually fits in the bracket.

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Thank you: I had totally forgotten about The White Mountains! I have to track it down and read it again…just reading the synopsis made it bubble up in my mind again.

And there was a BBC adaptation that covered the first book and a half but got cancelled when the BBC was having budget problems – around the same time when classic Dr. Who was cancelled.

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