Recommended Book List: Middle Grades

Guest post by Rebecca Redinger, Redwood’s Librarian

The previous post, Recommended Book List: Lower Grades, we provided a curated list of reading materials suggested for students in lower grades, K-3rd. Today’s post highlights books for the middle grades, 3rd-8th. Oftentimes, helping engage middle grade readers is as simple as selecting entertaining subjects and attractive formats. For students with dyslexia, however, the road to becoming stronger and more independent readers is not as easy. At Redwood we are working hard to provide access to books that match the reading levels of the students. As they become better and better at decoding the words on the page, the stories and information presented will become more and more alive in their minds.

Unlike many of the books recommended for the lower grades, the books here fall into a wide range of subjects and depths. Some books are carefree and humorous; others touch on the themes of war, mental illness, death, divorce, and incarceration. The middle grade years are pivotal in a child’s development. As responsible adults, let these books serve as opportunities to learn and engage along with the young readers in your life. Tackle the hard questions, laugh at the punchlines, weep with the grieved, and applaud with the victors.

As before, the books are listed in order according to their Lexile numbers (the most common leveling used by library catalogs and online retailers). The records also include their corresponding Fountas & Pinnell letters and the general subject categorization. As you dig deeper and discover your child’s favorite books and authors, refer to the Reading A-Z correlation chart to switch between leveling systems. Enjoy, and happy reading!

FICTION

Title, Author, Lexile Range, Fountas & Pinnell, Subject/Format

HiLo series
Judd Winick
200-460
D-I
Graphic Novel/Comic

Pashmina
Nidhi Chanani
240
D-E
Graphic Novel/Comic

Dog Man series
Dav Pilkey
260-530
D-L
Graphic Novel/Comic

Hazardous Tales series
Nathan Hale
270-410
D-G
Historical Fiction

Real Friends
Shannon Hale
290
D-E
Graphic Novel/Comic

Big Nate series
Lincoln Peirce
300-500
E-J
Graphic Novel/Comic

The Truth as Told by Mason Butte
Leslie Connor
310
D-F
Mystery

Zita the Spacegirl
Ben Hatke
310
E-G
Graphic Novel/Comic

Amulet series
Kazu Kibuishi
330-410
F-G
Graphic Novel/Comic

Be Prepared
Vera Brosgol
360
F-G
Graphic Novel/Comic

Phoebe and Her Unicorn
Dana Simpson
390
F-G
Graphic Novel/Comic

Calvin Coconut series
Graham Salisbury
400-490
F-G
Graphic Novel/Comic

Smile
Raina Telgemeier
410
F-G
Graphic Novel/Comic

El Deafo
Cece Bell
420
F-G
Graphic Novel/Comic

Roller Girl
Victoria Jamieson
440
F-G
Graphic Novel/Comic

The Boxcar Children series
Gertrude Chandler Warner
490-650
H-M
Mystery

The Season of Styx Malone
Kekla Magoon
510
I-J
Realistic Fiction

The Tail of Emily Windshap
Liz Kessler
540
J-M
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

All Rise for the Honorable Perry T. Cook
Leslie Connor
540
J-L
Realistic Fiction

Best Man
Richard Peck
540
J-L
Realistic Fiction

Mo & Dale Mysteries series
Sheila Turnage
540-560
J-M
Realistic Fiction

Fish in a Tree
Lynda Mullaly Hunt
550
J-M
Realistic Fiction

Raymie Nightingale
Kate DiCamillo
550
J-M
Realistic Fiction

I Survived . . . series
Lauren Tarshis
550-740
J-N
Adventure

Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing
Judy Blume
560
J-M
Realistic Fiction

Girls Who Code series
Stacia Deutsch, etc.
560-680
J-N
Realistic Fiction

Mr. Terupt series
Rob Buyea
560-790
J-M
Realistic Fiction

The One and Only Ivan
Katherine Applegate
570
J-M
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Life of Pi
Yann Martel
570
J-M
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Al Capone at Alcatraz series
Gennifer Choldenko
570-620
J-M
Historical Fiction

The Great Shelby Holmes series
Elizabeth Eulberg
570-690
J-N
Mystery

The War that Saved My Life
Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
580
K-M
Historical Fiction

Frank Einstein series
Jon Scieszka
580-730
L-N
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Stargirl
Jerry Spinelli
590
L-M
Realistic Fiction

Percy Jackson and the Olympians series
Rick Riordan
590-790
L-N
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Artemis Fowl
Eoin Colfer
600
K-M
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

The Parker Inheritance
Varian Johnson
610
K-M
Mystery

Aru Shah and the End of Time
Roshani Chokshi
630
L-M
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Sweep: The Story of a Girl and Her Monster
Jonathan Auxier
630
L-M
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Armstrong & Charlie
Steven B. Franks
630
L-M
Historical Fiction

The Lions of Little Rock
Kristen Levine
630
L-M
Historical Fiction

The Girl Who Drank the Moon
Kelly Barnhill
640
L-M
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Front Desk
Kelly Yang
640
L-M
Realistic Fiction

Betsy-Tacy series
Maud Hart Lovelace
640-790
L-O
Classic Fiction

Inkling
Kenneth Oppel and Sydney Smith
650
L-M
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

The Last Kids on Earth
Max Brallier
650
L-N
Graphic Novel/Comic

The Way Home Looks Now
Wendy Wan-Long Shang
650
L-M
Historical Fiction

Stars Beneath Our Feet
David Barclay Moore
650
L-M
Realistic Fiction

Holes
Louis Sachar
660
L-N
Adventure

Sammy Keyes series
Wendelin Van Draanen
660-820
L-Q
Mystery

Ella Enchanted
Gail Carson Levine
670
L-N
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Lucky Broken Girl
Ruth Behar
670
L-N
Historical Fiction

Number the Stars
Lois Lowry
670
L-N
Historical Fiction

The First Rule of Punk
Celia C. Pérez
670
L-N
Realistic Fiction

Rules
Cynthia Lord
670
L-N
Realistic Fiction

Long Way Down from Chicago series
Richard Peck
670-750
L-N
Historical Fiction

Echo
Pam Muñoz Ryan
680
L-N
Historical Fiction

Step Up to the Plate, Maria Singh
Uma Krishnaswami
680
L-N
Realistic Fiction

The Underland Chronicles
Suzanne Collins
680-730
L-N
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Hello, Universe
Erin Entrada Kelly
690
L-N
Realistic Fiction

Where the Red Fern Grows
Wilson Rawls
700
L-N
Classic Fiction

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane
Kate DiCamillo
700
L-N
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler
E.L. Konigsburg
700
L-N
Mystery

Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus
Dusti Bowling
700
L-N
Mystery

Out of My Mind
Sharon Draper
700
L-N
Mystery

Merci Suárez Changes Gears
Meg Medina
700
L-N
Realistic Fiction

Track series
Jason Reynolds
700-850
L-N
Realistic Fiction

A Wrinkle in Time quartet
Madeleine L’Engle
700-850
L-R
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Swindle
Gordon Korman
710
L-N
Adventure

The Secret Garden
Francis Hodgson Burnett
710
L-N
Classic Fiction

The Giver
Lois Lowry
710
L-N
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

The BFG
Roald Dahl
720
L-N
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Little House on the Prairie series
Laura Ingalls Wilder
720-1030
L-Z
Historical Fiction

Spy School series
Stuart Gibbs
720-780
L-N
Mystery

The Wild Robot
Peter Brown
740
L-N
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Little Women
Louisa May Alcott
750
L-N
Classic Fiction

Esperanza Rising
Pam Muñoz Ryan
750
L-N
Historical Fiction

Jasper and the Riddle of Riley's Mine
Caroline Starr Rose
750
L-N
Historical Fiction

The Mighty Miss Malone
Christopher Paul Curtis
750
L-N
Historical Fiction

One Crazy Summer
Rita Williams-Garcia
750
L-N
Historical Fiction

The Westing Game
Ellen Raskin
750
L-N
Mystery

When You Reach Me
Rebecca Stead
750
L-N
Mystery

As Brave as You
Jason Reynolds
750
L-N
Realistic Fiction

The Crossover
Kwame Alexander
750
L-N
Poetry

The Epic Fail of Arturo Zamora
Pablo Cartaya
750
L-N
Realistic Fiction

Pax
Sarah Pennypacker
760
L-N
Adventure

Heart of a Samurai
Margi Preus
760
L-N
Historical Fiction

Harriet the Spy
Louise Fitzhugh
760
L-N
Mystery

Hoot
Carl Hiaasen
760
L-N
Realistic Fiction

Bo at Ballard Creek series
Kirkpatrick Hill
760-840
L-R
Historical Fiction

Walk Two Moons
Sharon Creech
770
L-N
Realistic Fiction

Counting by 7s
Holly Goldberg Sloan
770
L-N
Realistic Fiction

Chasing Vermeer series
Blue Balliett
770-870
L-R
Mystery

The Borrowers
Mary Norton
780
M-N
Classic Fiction

Save Me a Seat
Sarah Weeks and Gita Varadarajan
780
M-N
Realistic Fiction

Under the Egg
Laura Marx Fitzgerald
79-
M-O
Mystery

Wonder
R.J. Palacio
790
M-O
Realistic Fiction

Only Game
Mike Lupica
790
M-O
Realistic Fiction

Nevermoor series
Jessica Townsend
790-840
M-R
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

The Chronicles of Narnia
C.S. Lewis
790-970
M-T
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Ms. Bixby’s Last Day
John David Anderson
800
M-P
Realistic Fiction

The Hunger Games series
Suzanne Collins
800-820
M-N
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

The Penderwicks series
Jeanne Birdall
800-940
M-W
Realistic Fiction

Birchbark House series
Louise Erdrich
800-970
M-X
Historical Fiction

Redwall series
Brian Jacques
800-1010
M-Z
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Anne of Green Gables series
L.M. Montgomery series
800-1020
M-Z
Classic Fiction

Bridge to Terebithia
Katherine Paterson
810
M-P
Realistic Fiction

The Vanderbeekers series
Karina Yan Glaser
810
M-P
Realistic Fiction

Austin Family Chronicles
Madeleine L’Engle
810-1010
M-S
Realistic Fiction

The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Brian Selznick
820
M-Q
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Frindle
Andrew Clements
830
M-Q
Realistic Fiction

Matilda
Roald Dahl
840
M-Q
Realistic Fiction

Sweetest Heist in History
Octavia Spencer
860
N-R
Mystery

Cilla Lee-Jenkins
Susan Tan and Dana Wulfekottle
870-940
N-W
Realistic Fiction

Hero on a Bicycle
Shirley Hughes
880
N-S
Historical Fiction

Harry Potter series
J.K. Rowling
880-950
N-S
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Shiloh
Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
890
N-S
Classic Fiction

Diary of a Wimpy Kid series
Jeff Kinney
910-1060
N-U
Realistic Fiction

The Dark is Rising series
Susan Cooper
920
N-T
Fantasy/Sci-Fi

Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry
Mildred D. Taylor
920
N-T
Historical Fiction

Bud, Not Buddy
Christopher Paul Curtis
950
Q-T
Historical Fiction

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
Mark Twain
950
Q-T
Classic Fiction

Wednesday Wars
Gary D. Schmidt
990
Q-Z
Historical Fiction

Brown Girl Dreaming
Jacqueline Woodson
990
Q-T
Poetry

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Mark Twain
990
Q-Z
Classic Fiction

The Series of Unfortunate Events
Lemony Snicket
1010-1370
Q-Z
Fantasy/Sci-Fi


NON FICTION

Childhood of Famous Americans series
Augusta Stevenson
510-800
J-O
Historical/Biographical

Blast to the Past series
Stacia Deutsch
590-720
J-N
Historical

Otis and Will Discover the Deep
Barb Rosenstock
620
K-M
Science

Dear America series
(various authors)
700-1070
L-Z
Historical/Biographical

Older than Dirt
Don Brown
730
L-N
Graphic Novel/Comic - Science

March series
John Lewis, Andrew Aydin, and Nate Powell
760-850
L-R
Graphic Novel/Comic - Historical

Turning 15 on the Road to Freedom
Lynda Blackmon Lowery
780
L-N
Historical

My Name is America series
(various authors)
820-1010
M-Z
Historical/Biographical

Sachiko: A Nagasaki Bomb Survivor's Story
Caren Stelson
850
M-S
Historical/Biographical

Kids on Strike!
Susan Campbell Bartoletti
920
Q-Z
Historical

Amelia Lost: The Life and Disappearance of Amelia Earhart
Candace Fleming
930
Q-Z
Historical/Biographical

Boots On The Ground: America's War In Vietnam
Elizabeth Partridge
960
Q-Z
Historical - Military

Undefeated
Steve Sheinkin
980
Q-Z
Biographical - Sports

Almost Astronauts: 13 Women Who Dared to Dream
Tanya Lee Stone
980
Q-Z
Biographical - Science

Chasing Lincoln’s Killer
James Swanson
980
Q-Z
Historical - Biographical

Spooked!: How a Radio Broadcast and The War of the Worlds Sparked the 1938 Invasion of America
Gail Jarrow
1000
Q-Z
Historical

The Boys in the Boat: The True Story of an American Team's Epic Journey to Win Gold at the 1936 Olympics
Daniel James Brown
1000
Q-Z
Historical - Military

House of Dreams: The Life of L. M. Montgomery
Liz Rosenberg
1010
Q-Z
Biographical

Isaac the Alchemist: Secrets of Isaac Newton, Reveal'd
Mary Losure
1010
Q-Z
Biographical - Science

Titanic: Voices from the Disaster
Deborah Hopkinson
1040
S-Z
Historical

Six Days in October
Karen Blumenthal
1040
S-Z
Historical

Uprooted: The Japanese American Experience During World War II
Albert Marrin
1050
S-Z
Historical - Military

Calling All Minds
Temple Grandin
1060
S-Z
Biographical - Science

The Long Road to Gettysburg
Jim Murphy
1070
S-Z
Historical - Military

Twelve Days in May: Freedom Ride 1961
Larry Dane Brimner
1080
S-Z
Historical

Sinking the Sultana
Sally Walker
1090
Z
Historical

Eleanor Roosevelt: A Life of Discovery
Russell Freedman
1100
Z
Historical/Biographical

The Girl Who Drew Butterflies: How Maria Merian’s Art Changed Science
Joyce Sidman
1110
Z
Biographical - Science

Attucks!
Phillip Hoose
1110
Z
Historical - Sports

Kaitlin FerianteRedwood