Well, this is really tough to pick one... I have a bazillion I could talk about. Well, I will compromise. I shall pick two awesome books/series that you really should read.
The first is Dangerous Angels by Francesca Lia Block. This book is the combined edition of all of her Weetzie Bat books. I love nearly all of Francesca's books, but these were the first I read and left the biggest impact.
by Francesca Lia Block
Love is a dangerous angel...Francesca Lia Block's luminous saga of interwoven lives will send the senses into wild overdrive. These post-modern fairy tales chronicle the thin line between fear and desire, pain and pleasure, cutting loose and holding on in a world where everyone is vulnerable to the most beautiful and dangerous angel of all: love.
What I love about this series:
The style is out of this world. There's a bazillion issues dealt with - such as homosexuality, single mothers, AIDs and more. This book will transport you to a world like ours only so different. I really just recommend reading them - there's magic in Block's words that can only be discovered through reading her books.
And the second is...
Bloody Jack: Being an Account of the Curious Adventures of Mary "Jackie" Faber, Ship's Boy
Life as a ship's boy aboard HMS Dolphin is a dream come true for Jacky Faber. Gone are the days of scavenging for food and fighting for survival on the streets of eighteenth-century London. Instead, Jacky is becoming a skilled and respected sailor as the crew pursues pirates on the high seas. There's only one problem: Jacky is a girl. And she must use every bit of her spirit, wit, and courage to keep the crew from discovering her secret.
My goodreads review (from September, 2007):
I loved this book. There's some romance, a lot of cussin' and some action too! I just loved it and can't wait to start on the next one in the series. I enjoyed how it was written in a way that showed her accent and progressed as she started to talk more properly. A must read for adventure and pirate lovers.
Recent thoughts (aka. why you need to read this!): I have read all but the latest in this series and lately I've been having an ache to finally get around to reading the last one. And why is that? I need some serious adventure, wittiness, and a bit of romance in my read. These books deliver all of that and more. This series mixes some historical events with the insanely adventurous life of Mary "Jackie" Faber - an orphan who goes from being homeless to pretending to be a boy on a ship for the British army and then later on in the books revealing herself for who she is and gaining her own reputation as quite the swashbuckling criminal.
If you are in desperate need of some high-seas, historical, or simply witty and whimsical adventure.. this is your book. You will NOT regret reading this series.. well you might.. because you'll probably be dying for the next book.. and then the next.. and the next..
Read. This. Book.
Read both of these series! They won't disappoint! :)