Suggested Summer Reading

  • The Game of Sunken Places

    The Game of Sunken Places

    Anderson, M. T

    Mystery

    When two boys stay with an eccentric relative at his mansion in rural Vermont, they discover an old-fashioned board game that draws them into a mysterious adventure.

  • The Underneath [Newbery Honor Book]

    The Underneath
    [Newbery Honor Book]

    Appelt, Kathi

    Magical Realism

    An old hound that has been chained up at his hateful owner's run-down shack, and two kittens born underneath the house, endure separation, danger and many other tribulations in their quest to be reunited and free.

  • Murder at Midnight

    Murder at Midnight

    Avi

    Mystery

    Equal parts humor, mystery, and magic, this is the story of one boy's attempts to save his master, a magician, from death after he is wrongfully accused of being a traitor.

  • Wings: A Fairy Tale

    Wings: A Fairy Tale

    Baker, E. D.

    Fantasy

    When Tamisin discovers she is half fairy, she decides to find out more answers directly from the fairies themselves, including her mother, the fairy queen.

  • The Name of this Book is Secret

    The Name of this Book is Secret

    Bosch, Pseudonymous

    Mystery

    Two 11-year-old misfits try to solve the mystery of a dead magician and stop the evil Dr. L and Ms. Mauvais, who are searching for the secret to immortality. This is the story of a secret, and also a secret story.

  • Darkwood

    Darkwood

    Breen, M. E.

    Scary Fantasy

    A clever and fearless orphan endures increasing danger while trying to escape from greedy lawless men and elude the terrifying "kinderstalks" - animals who steal children - before discovering her true destiny.

  • Masterpiece

    Masterpiece

    Broach, Elise

    Mystery Fantasy

    After Marvin, a beetle, makes a miniature drawing as an 11th birthday gift for James, a human with whom he shares a house, the two new friends work together to help recover a Durer drawing stolen from the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

  • Shakespeare's Secret

    Shakespeare's Secret

    Broach, Elise

    Mystery

    Named after a character in a Shakespearen play, misfit sixth-grader Hero becomes interested in exploring this unusual connection because of a valuable diamond supposedly hidden in her new house, an intriguing neighbor, and the unexpected attention of the most popular boy in school.

  • Wild Things

    Wild Things

    Carmichael, Clay

    Realistic

    11-year-old Zoe is left to raise herself until it is discovered she has a half uncle. Henry is a doctor turned artist who became reclusive after his wife's death. Zoe's arrival affects more than just Henry. With strongly drawn characters, this book will resonate with fans of other coming-of-age stories like The Secret Garden and Anne of Green Gables.

  • The Books of Umber: Happenstance Found

    The Books of Umber: Happenstance Found

    Catanese, P.W.

    Fantasy

    Enter the magical world of Kurahaven alongside Happenstance, a young boy with no memory. When he awakes, blindfolded and wet on a cold cave floor, Happenstance has no idea who he is or where he comes from. He is rescued by Oates, a brutish man laboring under a curse that requires him to always speak truthfully, Sophie, a young shy archer, and Lord Umber, a man of many talents who hails from another world – Earth.

  • Al Capone Does My Shirts [Garden State Teen Book Award Winner]

    Al Capone Does My Shirts
    [Garden State Teen Book Award Winner]

    Choldenko, Gennifer

    Realistic

    A 12-year-old boy names Moose moves to Alcatraz Island in 1935. His father, a guard, is housed there. Moose has to contend with his extraordinary new environment in addition to life with his autistic sister.

  • Gregor the Overlander

    Gregor the Overlander

    Collins, Suzanne

    Fantasy

    When 11-year-old Gregor and his 2-year-old sister are pulled into a strange underground world, they trigger an epic battle involving men, bats, rats, cockroaches, and spiders while on a quest foretold by an ancient prophecy.

  • The Dark is Rising [Newbery Winner]

    The Dark is Rising
    [Newbery Winner]

    Cooper, Susan

    Fantasy

    On his eleventh birthday Will Stanton discovers that he is the last of the Old Ones, destined to seek the six magical Signs that will enable the Old Ones to triumph over the evil forces of the Dark.

  • Millions

    Millions

    Cottrell Boyce, Frank

    Realistic

    The Cunningham brothers literally have money drop in their laps when a bag of cash falls from the sky; however, the crooks who initially stole the loot are hot on the trail to retrieve it.

  • Cosmic

    Cosmic

    Cottrell Boyce, Frank

    Realistic

    Having facial hair and the height of an adult is a nuisance for 12-year-old Liam, until he realizes he can pass for a grownup. The charade escalates into danger when Liam passes himself off as his own father and wins a trip to a new theme park in China with his friend Florida, where they will be the first to experience an out-of-this-world new thrill ride.

  • Bud, Not Buddy [Newbery Winner]

    Bud, Not Buddy
    [Newbery Winner]

    Curtis, Christopher

    Historical

    Ten-year-old Bud, a motherless boy living in Flint, Michigan during the Great Depression, escapes a bad foster home and sets out in search of the man he believes to be his father--the renowned bandleader, H.E. Calloway of Grand Rapids.

  • The Watsons Go to Birmingham [Newbery Honor Winner]

    The Watsons Go to Birmingham
    [Newbery Honor Winner]

    Curtis, Christopher

    Historical

    The ordinary interactions and everyday routines of the Watsons, an African American family living in Flint, Michigan, are drastically changed after they go to visit Grandma in Alabama in the summer of 1963.

  • The 13th Reality: The Journal of Curious Letters

    The 13th Reality: The Journal of Curious Letters

    Dashner, James

    Fantasy

    When Tick receives letters containing clues from a mysterious person known as M.G., they lead him on a hunt that promises adventure and a chance to do something important. Along the way he meets Sofia (a tough nut from Italy), Paul (from Florida) and Sato (from Japan but with a strange connection to M.G.) and friendships forged of adventure.

  • No Cream Puffs

    No Cream Puffs

    Day, Karen

    Sports Historical

    In 1980, when 12-year-old Madison, who loves to play baseball, decides to play in her town's baseball league, she never envisions the uproar it causes when she becomes the first girl to join.

  • The London Eye Mystery

    The London Eye Mystery

    Dowd, Siobhan

    Mystery

    When Ted and Kate's cousin, Salim, disappears from the London Eye ferris wheel, the two siblings must work together - Ted with his brain that is "wired differently" and impatient Kate - to solve the mystery.

  • Shooting the Moon

    Shooting the Moon

    Dowell, Frances O'Roark

    Historical

    When her brother is sent to fight in Vietnam, 12-year-old Jamie begins to reconsider the army world that she has grown up in.

  • Hotel for Dogs

    Hotel for Dogs

    Duncan, Lois

    Realistic

    The Walkers are moving to a new town, and staying with an aunt who's allergic to dogs. Too bad for Andi and her brother Bruce, who love dogs -- and happen to meet a stray that needs help. Soon, Andi hatches a plan, turning the abandoned house down the block into a hotel for dogs.

  • The City of Ember [Garden State Teen Book Award Winner]

    The City of Ember
    [Garden State Teen Book Award Winner]

    DuPrau, Jeanne

    Fantasy Futuristic

    In the city of Ember, twelve-year-old Lina trades jobs on Assignment Day to be a Messenger to run to new places in her decaying but beloved city, perhaps even to glimpse Unknown Regions.

  • The Year the Swallows Came Early

    The Year the Swallows Came Early

    Fitzmaurice, Kathryn

    Realistic

    In this coming of age tale, 11-year-old Groovy Robinson must decide if she can forgive the failings of someone she loves, help her best friend come to terms with his mother, and figure out how to become a chef all during the summer the swallows came early.

  • The Girl Who Could Fly

    The Girl Who Could Fly

    Forester, Victoria

    Fantasy

    Little House on the Prairie meets X-Men when homeschooled farm girl Piper McCloud reveals her ability to fly. She is quickly taken to a secret government facility to be trained with other exceptional children, but she soon realizes that something is very wrong and begins to work with brilliant and wealthy Conrad to escape.

  • Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key [National Book Award Finalist]

    Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key
    [National Book Award Finalist]

    Gantos, Jack

    Realistic

    Joey has trouble paying attention and controlling his mood swings when his perscription meds wear off and he starts getting worked up and acting weird, to the constant disappointment of his mother and teachers.

  • Eleven

    Eleven

    Giff, Patricia Reilly

    Mystery

    When Sam, who can barely read, discovers an old newspaper clipping just before his eleventh birthday, it brings forth memories from his past, and with the help of a new friend at school, they discover who Sam really is and where he belongs.

  • Amelia Rules! The Whole World's Crazy

    Amelia Rules! The Whole World's Crazy

    Gownley, Jimmy

    Graphic Novel

    Amelia McBride adjusts to life in a new town after her parents' divorce causes her to leave Manhattan. She is helped along the way by an odd group of friends and her ever-cool Aunt Tanner Clark.

  • The Brooklyn Nine: A Novel in Nine Innings

    The Brooklyn Nine: A Novel in Nine Innings

    Gratz, Alan

    Sports Historical

    One family. Nine generations. One city. Nine innings of baseball.

  • The Road to Paris [Coretta Scott King Honor Book]

    The Road to Paris
    [Coretta Scott King Honor Book]

    Grimes, Nikki

    Realistic

    Inconsolable at being separated from her older brother, 8-year-old Paris is apprehensive about her new foster family but just as she learns to trust them, she faces a life-changing decision.

  • Getting Air

    Getting Air

    Gutman, Dan

    Adventure

    After foiling a terrorist hijacking aboard their airplane, 14-year-old Jimmy, his younger sister, and two skateboarding friends crash land the plane and try to survive in a forest wilderness until help arrives.

  • Princess Academy [Newbery Honor Book]

    Princess Academy
    [Newbery Honor Book]

    Hale, Shannon

    Fantasy

    While attending a strict academy for potential princesses with the other girls from her mountain village, fourteen-year-old Miri discovers unexpected talents and connections to her homeland.

  • Olive's Ocean [Newbery Honor Book]

    Olive's Ocean
    [Newbery Honor Book]

    Henkes, Kevin

    Realistic

    On a summer visit to her grandmother's cottage by the ocean, twelve-year-old Martha gains perspective on the death of a classmate, on her relationship with her grandmother, on her feelings for an older boy, and on her plans to be a writer.

  • Flush

    Flush

    Hiaasen, Carl

    Realistic

    With their father is 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.

  • Hoot [Newbery Honor Book]

    Hoot
    [Newbery Honor Book]

    Hiaasen, Carl

    Realistic

    Roy, 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.

  • Redwall

    Redwall

    Jacques, Brian

    Fantasy

    When the peaceful life of ancient Redwall Abbey is shattered by the arrival of the evil rat Cluny and his villainous hordes, Matthias, a young mouse, determines to find the legendary sword of Martin the Warrior.

  • Children of the Lamp: The Akhenaten Adventure

    Children of the Lamp: The Akhenaten Adventure

    Kerr, Philip

    Fantasy

    When 12-year-old twins Philippa and John discover they are descended from a long line of djinn, their mother sends them away to their Uncle Nimrod, who takes them to Cairo where he starts to teach them about their extraordinary powers.

  • Amulet: The Stonekeeper

    Amulet: The Stonekeeper

    Kibuishi, Kazu

    Graphic Novel

    Emily and Navin have just moved into an ancestral home with their mother when she is kidnapped by a tentacled creature. Now it's up to Em and Navin to figure out how to set things right and save their mother!

  • The Dragon of Trelian

    The Dragon of Trelian

    Knudsen, Michelle

    Fantasy

    A mage's apprentice, a princess, and a dragon must combine their strength to expose a traitor and save two kingdoms from war and ruin.

  • The View from Saturday [Newbery Winner]

    The View from Saturday
    [Newbery Winner]

    Konigsburg, E. L.

    Realistic

    Four students, with their own individual stories, develop a special bond with their teacher who chooses them to compete in an Academic Bowl Competition.

  • Day of Tears: A Novel in Dialogue [Coretta Scott King Award Winner]

    Day of Tears: A Novel in Dialogue
    [Coretta Scott King Award Winner]

    Lester, Julius

    Historical

    Through play-like dialogue, Lester tells the story of a young slave girl, Emma. Emma wants to raise the master's daughters to have good hearts as a rift over slavery begins to rip across the nation. But when Master Butler must sell many of his slaves in the nation's largest slave auction to pay off his gambling debts, Emma is torn from the girls she loves, her family, and friends.

  • The Giver [Newbery Winner]

    The Giver
    [Newbery Winner]

    Lowry, Lois

    Fantasy

    Given his lifetime assignment at the age the Ceremony of Twelve, Jonas becomes the receiver of memories shared by only one other in his community and discovers the terrible truth about the society in which he lives.

  • Travel Team

    Travel Team

    Lupica, Mike

    Realistic

    Danny Walker is crushed when he doesn't make the Vikings, the seventh-grade basketball team. He is told that he is too short, but he suspects that the real reason has something to do with the bad blood between his divorced father (a former NBA star) and Mr. Ross, the father of the team's best player.

  • Maddigan's Fantasia

    Maddigan's Fantasia

    Mahy, Margaret

    Fantasy

    In a world made uncertain by "the Chaos," two time-traveling boys, 15-year-old Timon and 11-year old Eden, seek to protect a magic talisman, aided by 12-year-old Garland, a member of a traveling circus known as Maddigan's Fantastia.

  • Boys are Dogs

    Boys are Dogs

    Margolis, Leslie

    Realistic

    When her mother moves in with her new boyfriend, sixth-grader Annabelle gets to cope with a new town, a new school, and a new puppy and, while training her puppy, she decides to apply some of the same techniques to tame the unruly boys that are making her middle-school life miserable.

  • Girls Acting Catty

    Girls Acting Catty

    Margolis, Leslie

    Realistic

    Sixth-grader Annabelle spends autumn competing with groups of friends at school, her mother's pre-wedding stress, learning to get along with a cute step-brother-to-be, and such momentous events as wearing her first bra and learning to shave her legs.

  • Finally

    Finally

    Mass, Wendy

    Realistic

    After her twelfth birthday, Rory checks off a list of things she is finally allowed to do, but unexpected consequences interfere with her involvement in the movie being shot at her school, while a weird prediction starts to make sense.

  • Bird

    Bird

    Murphy, Rita

    Fantasy

    A girl so slight, she is easily carried off by the wind. An elderly widow whose husdand dies under strange circumstances. An isolated dwelling that breeds fear. Miranda has no recollection of where she came from-only that years ago, a gust of wind deposited her outside Bourne Manor and the widow Wysteria has provided for her since. Then one day, a boy named Farley appears, and with his help, Miranda embraces her destiny.

  • The Tapestry: The Hound of Rowan

    The Tapestry: The Hound of Rowan

    Neff, Henry

    Fantasy

    There is a force stirring in Max MacDaniels. When a tapestry comes to life before his eyes, he is recruited as a Potential and trained to hone his magical abilities at a special boarding school

  • Keys to the Kingdom: Mister Monday

    Keys to the Kingdom: Mister Monday

    Nix, Garth

    Fantasy

    Arthur Penhaligon is supposed to die at a young age, but is saved by a key shaped like the minute hand of a clock. The key causes bizarre creatures to come from another realm, bringing with them a plague. A man named Mister nothing will stop at nothing to get the key back. Arthur goes to a myseterious house that only he can see, so that he can learn the truth about himself and the key.

  • Island of the Blue Dolphins [Newbery Winner]

    Island of the Blue Dolphins
    [Newbery Winner]

    O'Dell, Scott

    Adventure

    Records the courage and self-reliance of an Indian girl who lived alone for eighteen years on an isolated island off the California coast when her tribe emigrated and she was left behind.

  • The Mostly True Adventures of Homer P. Figg [Newbery Honor Award]

    The Mostly True Adventures of Homer P. Figg
    [Newbery Honor Award]

    Philbrick, W.R.

    Historical Humor Adventure

    12-year-old Homer, a poor but clever orphan, has extraordinary adventures after running away from his evil uncle to rescue his brother, who has been sold into service in the Civil War. In the vein of Tom Sawyer, Homer lies, performs and beguiles his way out of sticky situations.

  • The Westing Game [Newbery Winner]

    The Westing Game
    [Newbery Winner]

    Raskin, Ellen

    Mystery

    The mysterious death of an eccentric millionaire brings together an unlikely assortment of heirs who must uncover the circumstances of his death before they can claim their inheritance.

  • Percy Jackson and the Olympians: Lightning Thief

    Percy Jackson and the Olympians: Lightning Thief

    Riordan, Rick

    Fantasy

    Percy, expelled from six schools for being unable to control his temper, is attacked by his algebra teacher, a Harpy (mythological creature that is part woman, part bird) at his new school. He is then revealed to be a demi-god, the son of a mortal woman and an immortal father and is sent to Camp Half Blood, where he meets other demi-gods.

  • Green

    Green

    Roberts, Laura Peyton

    Fantasy

    When Lily turns 13, a trio of leprechauns appear in her bedroom and whisk her away to their home, a land of clover, piskies, a new friend, a cute boy and lots of glimmering, glittering gold. A world of Green. It turns out Lily has leprechaun blood in her and she is in line to be the keeper for the clan of Green. but she must pass the tests first or remain in Green forever.

  • Holes [Garden State Children's Book Award Winner]

    Holes
    [Garden State Children's Book Award Winner]

    Realistic

    When the innocent Stanley Yeats is given a choice between going to jail and going to Camp Green Lake, he chooses camp. It is at this correctional camp in the Texas desert that he finds his first real friends, a treasure, and a new sense of self.

  • ERratum

    ERratum

    Sorrells, Walter

    Fantasy

    When Jessica finds - and then loses - an unfinished book about her life, she learns that if she cannot keep it from falling into the wrong hands, the balance of the universe is in peril.

  • Maniac Magee [Newbery Winner]

    Maniac Magee
    [Newbery Winner]

    Spinelli, Jerry

    Realistic

    After his parents die, Jeffrey Lionel Magee's life becomes legendary, as he accomplishes athletic and other feats which awe his contemporaries.

  • Loser [Garden State Children's Book Award Winner]

    Loser
    [Garden State Children's Book Award Winner]

    Spinelli, Jerry

    Realistic

    Even though his classmates from the first grade on have considered him strange and a loser, Daniel Zinkoff's optimism and exuberance and the support of his loving family do not allow him to feel that way about himself.

  • The Mysterious Benedict Society

    The Mysterious Benedict Society

    Stewart, Trenton Lee

    Fantasy

    After passing a series of mind-bending tests, four children are selected for a secret mission that requires them to go undercover at the Learning Institute for the Very Enlightened, where the only rule is there are no rules.

  • The Hobbit

    The Hobbit

    Tolkien, J.R.R.

    Fantasy

    The adventures of Bilbo Baggins, a hobbit, in a land inhabited by dwarves, elves, goblins, dragons, and humans. Bilbo reluctantly sets off to recover a stolen treasure from a dragon hidden in the Lonely Mountain and ends up being a hero.

  • Emma-Jean Lazarus Fell Out of a Tree

    Emma-Jean Lazarus Fell Out of a Tree

    Trashis, Lauren

    Realistic

    A quirky and utterly logical seventh-grade girl named Emma-Jean Lazarus discovers some interesting results when she gets involved in the messy everyday problems of her peers.

  • A Crooked Kind of Perfect

    A Crooked Kind of Perfect

    Urban, Linda

    Realistic

    Ten-year-old Zoe Elias, who longs to play the piano but must resign herself to learning the organ instead, finds that her musicianship has a positive impact on her workaholic mother, her jittery father, and her school social life.

  • Flipped

    Flipped

    Van Draanen, Wendelin

    Realistic

    Julie Baker is smitten with Bryce Loski from the minute he moves in next door during the second grade. Bryce wants nothing to do with the pesky and unusual Julie. But when they reach sixth grade, their opinions have flipped. Now Bryce finds himself interested in Julie but Julie isn't sure Bryce is all his baby-blue eyes would have her believe.

  • Zorgamazoo

    Zorgamazoo

    Weston, Robert

    Fantasy

    Imaginative and adventurous Katrina eludes her maniacal gaurdian to help Morty, a member of a vanishing breed of zorgles, with his quest to uncover the fate of the fabled zorgles of Zorgamazoo as well as of other creatures that seem to have disappeared from the earth.

  • Dragon Keeper

    Dragon Keeper

    Wilkinson, Carole

    Fantasy

    In ancient China during the Han Dynasty, a nameless orphan slave girl becomes a Dragon Kepper when she heroically comes to the aid of an aging dragon and both go on a dangerous journey across China to protect a mysterious stone vital to the dragon's legacy.

  • 100 Cupboards

    100 Cupboards

    Wilson, Nathan

    Fantasy

    After his parents are kidnapped, timid 12-year-old Henry York leaves his sheltered Boston life and moves to small-town Kansas, where he and his cousin Henrietta discover and explore hidden doors in the attic that seem to open onto other worlds.

  • Feathers [Newbery Honor Book]

    Feathers
    [Newbery Honor Book]

    Woodson, Jacqueline

    Historical

    When a new, white student nicknamed "The Jesus Boy" joins her sixth grade class in the winter of 1971, Frannie's growing friendship with him makes her start to see some things in a new light.

N Politi 6/10