Less science fiction, perhaps, more fiction with a dose of science.
Alex Rider: the Gadgets by Anthony Horowitz
Features the blueprints and technical specifications for the amazing gadgetry used by teenage spy Alex Rider.
Born Again by Kelly Kerney
Evolution, general science
While surreptitiously reading Darwin's Origin of the Species, hoping to prove it wrong, fourteen-year-old Mel, a "Jesus freak," uncovers a family secret that changes her views on her family, her church and, most vitally, her assumptions about God and science.
California Blue by David Klass
Environmental protection, endangered species
When seventeen-year-old John Rodgers discovers a new sub-species of butterfly which may necessitate closing the mill where his dying father works, they find themselves on opposite sides of the environmental conflict.
Claws by Dan Greenburg
Endangered species, animal care
Fourteen-year-old Cody trades one dangerous situation for another when he runs away from his abusive mother and takes a job caring for lions and tigers on a Texas ranch where one of the owners has supposedly gone missing.
Double Helix by Werlin
Eighteen-year-old Eli discovers a shocking secret about his life and his family while working for a Nobel Prize-winning scientist whose specialty is genetic engineering.
Dragonhaven by Robin McKinley
Environmental protection, endangered species, conservation, animal care
When Jake Mendoza, who lives in the Smokehill National Park where his father runs the Makepeace Institute of Integrated Dragon Studies, goes on his first solo overnight in the park, he finds an infant dragon whose mother has been killed by a poacher.
Dr Franklin's Island by Ann Halam
When their plane crashes over the Pacific Ocean, three science students are left stranded on a tropical island and then imprisoned by a doctor who is performing horrifying experiments on humans involving the transfer of animal genes.
Flush by Carl Hiaasen
With their father jailed for sinking a river boat, Noah Underwood and his younger sister, Abbey, must gather evidence that the owner of this floating casino is emptying his bilge tanks into the protected waters around their Florida Keys home.
Green Thumb by Rob Thomas
Botany, environmental protection
While spending the summer in the Amazon rain forest of Brazil doing botanical research, thirteen-year-old Grady discovers a secret language used by the trees to communicate with each other and falls afoul of the dictatorial Dr. Carter, whose motives seem questionable.
Hoot by Carl Hiaasen
Environmental protection, endangered species
Roy, who is new to his small Florida community, becomes involved in another boy's attempt to save a colony of burrowing owls from a proposed construction site.
Last Universe by William Sleator
When her desperately ill older brother insists that she take him into their mysterious backyard garden, designed by their quantum physicist great uncle, fourteen-year-old Susan discovers that things are not always what they seem.
Marino Mission by Karen B Chapman
Sixteen-year-old Alexa reluctantly joins her mother, a marine biologist, for a summer in Nicaragua, but finds that her internship in a DNA lab can provide the help a new friend needs to come to the aid of some captive dolphins. Includes glossary and vocabulary exercises.
Maximum Ride series by James Patterson
After the mutant Erasers abduct the youngest member of their group, the "birdkids," who are the result of genetic experimentation, take off in pursuit and find themselves struggling to understand their own origins and purpose.
Monkey Town by Ronald Kidd
When her father hatches a plan to bring publicity to their small Tennessee town by arresting a local high school teacher for teaching about evolution, the resulting 1925 Scopes trial prompts fifteen-year-old Frances to rethink many of her beliefs about religion and truth, as well as her relationship with her father.
Pox Party by MT Anderson
General science, experimentation
Various diaries, letters, and other manuscripts chronicle the experiences of Octavian, a young African American, from birth to age sixteen, as he is brought up as part of a science experiment in the years leading up to and during the Revolutionary War.
Science of Philip Pullman's Dark Materials
Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy is renowned for its mystery and magic. What's the truth behind it all? Is the golden compass actually based in science? How does the subtle knife cut through anything? Could there be a bomb like the one made with Lyra's hair? How do the Gallivespians' lodestone resonators really work? And, of course, what are the Dark Materials? Drawing on string theory and spacetime, quantum physics and chaos theory, award-winning science writers Mary and John Gribbin reveal the real science behind Philip Pullman's bestselling fantasy trilogy in entertaining and crystal-clear prose.
Siberia by Ann Halam
Biology, endangered species
After spending two years at a prison school, thirteen-year-old Sloe sets off on a trek across frozen wastelands, tending to the secret "seeds" of wild animals her mother left in her care, trying to reach a new life for all of them.
Skullduggery by Pete Hautman
Environmental protection, archaeology
During a field trip in the local woods, Roni and Brian find the local archaeology professor, Andrew Dart, knocked unconscious in a cave, which leads them to investigate a land development scheme.
Traces series by Malcolm Rose
Luke and Malc have the talent to crack any crime - and a good joke too. Aged sixteen, Luke is the youngest person ever to qualify as a Forensic Investigator in the world of Traces - a place where technology rules, where London is a slum and the North is a cultural capital, where from the age of five The Authorities decide your future. In this parallel world, quick-thinking Luke Harding and his robot sidekick, Malc, make a top forensic team.
Wild Man Island by Will Hobbs
After fourteen-year-old Andy slips away from his kayaking group to visit the wilderness site of his archaeologist father's death, a storm strands him on Admiralty Island, Alaska, where he manages to survive, encounters unexpected animal and human inhabitants, and looks for traces of the earliest prehistoric immigrants to America.
Wildside by Stephen Gould
A gateway to an alternate world teeming with extinct wildlife is discovered on a farm by 18-year-old Charlie Newell. With money made from selling extinct wildlife to prominent zoos, Charlie and his friends begin an airbase to travel into the new world. They discover that the world is full of gold deposits, but empty of men. Charlie enrolls his friends to mine the gold and they bring it to this world. Which is when their problems begin.