Juvenile Literature

The books in this collection navigate themes and ideas appropriate for younger readers. Whether you're looking for contemporary hits like Front Desk by Kelly Yang or beloved classics like Louisa May Alcott's Little Women, you can explore this collection to find a title that will excite the young readers in your life.

Publication year 2007Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Fantasy, Children's Literature

100 Cupboards is the first novel in a series of young adult fantasy books following main character Henry York, a boy who moves to Henry, Kansas with his aunt and uncle after his parents are kidnapped during a bike expedition in South America. One night, Henry and his adventurous cousin, Henrietta, discover a key to their deceased grandfather's locked bedroom; inside, they uncover a network of cupboards that each open into a different, fantastical world... Read 100 Cupboards Summary


Publication year 2010Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature

The 2010 novel 90 Miles to Havana by Cuban-American author Enrique Flores-Galbis is the coming-of-age tale of Julian, a young Cuban boy who, along with his two older brothers, travels to Miami as part of Operation Pedro Pan in the 1960s. The operation was a covert mission between Cuban and American authorities, with the help of the children’s parents, to evacuate Cuban children from the country during a time of political turmoil under new dictator Fidel... Read 90 Miles to Havana Summary


Publication year 2014Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Relationships: Friendship, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Realistic Fiction, Disability, Parenting, Children's Literature

Lisa Graff’s Absolutely Almost (2014) is a middle-grade novel about self-acceptance and recognizing one’s own worth. The story follows 10-year-old Albie’s journey along this path. Albie has never been the best at anything, especially anything to do with school. He continually falls short of others’ expectations, especially his parents’. However, his new nanny, Calista, sees him differently—and gradually, she helps Albie discover his strengths and take pride in himself.Graff is an American writer who pens... Read Absolutely Almost Summary


Publication year 1990Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: FamilyTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature, Class, Relationships, Parenting, Love / Sexuality, American Literature

Publication year 1942Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature, Action / Adventure, Medieval Literature / Middle Ages

Adam of the Road, published in 1942, was written by American author and librarian Elizabeth Janet Gray Vining and illustrated by Robert Lawson. Vining wrote many children’s books and holds the rare distinction of winning both the Newberry Medal and the Caldecott Medal, for her books Rabbit Hill and They Were Strong and Good, respectively. Adam of the Road is a historical fiction novel set in the 13th century that focuses on a child’s coming of... Read Adam of the Road Summary


Genre Novel, FictionTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature

Gennifer Choldenko’s Al Capone Does My Shirts (2006) is a work of historical fiction aimed at middle grade readers. The novel is about a family who moves to Alcatraz Island, a small, unprotected island in the middle of San Francisco Bay, in 1935, in the middle of the Great Depression, because the protagonist’s father gets a job at Alcatraz prison. This real life prison formerly housed America’s most infamous, dangerous and ruthless convicts, including historical... Read Al Capone Does My Shirts Summary


Publication year 1905Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Relationships: FathersTags Classic Fiction, Children's Literature, Historical Fiction

The classic children’s novel A Little Princess; Being the Whole Story of Sara Crewe Now Told for the First Time was published in 1905. In this work, Frances Hodgson Burnett (1849-1924), a celebrated Anglo-American novelist and playwright, expanded her earlier novella, Sara Crewe: or, What Happened at Miss Minchin's (1888), which had originally been serialized in St. Nicholas’ Magazine (1887). Burnett explains in her preface to A Little Princess that when she wrote a play... Read A Little Princess Summary


Publication year 2009Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: ForgivenessTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature

All the Broken Pieces is a novel in verse by Ann E. Burg, first published in 2009 and geared toward middle grade readers. The novel won the Jefferson Cup Award for children’s historical fiction and was named an IRA Notable Book for a Global Society, as well as a Booklist Editors’ Choice and YALSA Best Book for Young Adults. Burg was also nominated for a NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work. With a sparse... Read All the Broken Pieces Summary


Publication year 2010Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: FamilyTags Modern Classic Fiction, Auto/Biographical Fiction, Children's Literature, History: African

The middle grade novel A Long Walk to Water by Linda Sue Park follows the life of one of the Lost Boys from South Sudan during the Second Sudanese Civil War. Based on a true story, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt published the bestselling novel in 2010, and Park later wrote a companion picture book, Nya’s Long Walk. The story follows Salva Dut, based on a family friend of Park’s, who is chased from his village and... Read A Long Walk to Water Summary


Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Education, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Identity: Gender, Relationships: FamilyTags Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Class, Social Justice, History: Asian, Children's Literature

Twelve-year-old Amal’s dreams of becoming a teacher are shattered when she disrespects the powerful landlord of her Pakistani village and is forced into a life of servitude in the New York Times bestselling Amal Unbound (2018). Author Aisha Saeed is a Pakistani-American teacher, writer, and attorney as well as a founder of the We Need Diverse Books organization. In Amal Unbound, Saeed calls attention to contemporary global inequities, exploring themes of social injustice, education, and... Read Amal Unbound Summary


Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Gender, Values/Ideas: Music, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Realistic Fiction, History: Middle Eastern, Bullying, Children's Literature

Eleven-year-old Pakistani-American Amina Khokar lives in Milwaukee with her mother, father, and brother, Mustafa. At school, a Korean girl named Soojin Kim is her best friend. Amina is distressed when Soojin befriends Emily, a girl who has historically joined in on racially-motivated taunts against Soojin and Amina. The situation is complicated when Amina, Emily, and Soojin—along with the class oddball, Bradley—are assigned to the same group for an Oregon Trail project in their social studies... Read Amina's Voice Summary


Publication year 2001Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Safety & DangerTags Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Children's Literature, Allegory / Fable / Parable, Bullying, Trauma / Abuse / Violence, Relationships

Margaret Peterson Haddix’s Among the Impostors is the second book in the Shadow Children series, following Among the Hidden. The titles published after Among the Impostors are Among the Betrayed, Among the Barons, Among the Brave, Among the Enemy, and Among the Free. Haddix is also the author of several other books for young adults and has won several awards for her work. They include the Reading Association Children’s Book Award, ALA Best Books for... Read Among the Impostors Summary


Publication year 2015Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: FamilyTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

An ILA-CBC Children’s Choices Reading List Selection, A Night Divided, by Jennifer A. Nielsen, dramatizes the experiences of the division of Germany after WWII and tells a tale of family separation from a child’s perspective. The novel explores the effects of repressive government on intimate relationships as the main character, Gerta, watches friendships and partnerships dissolve as a result of the Cold War. It is a story of individual heroism and family devotion.At the start... Read A Night Divided Summary


Publication year 2009Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Realistic Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Disability, Children's Literature

Nora Raleigh Baskin won the Schneider Family Book Award for the young adult novel Anything But Typical, published in 2009. Anything But Typical tells the first-person fictional story of a 12-year-old boy diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Jason Blake struggles with adolescence in the same ways most 12-year-old boys do, but his disorder makes it more difficult for him to verbally express his experience. Instead, he turns to writing to share his inner world... Read Anything But Typical Summary


Publication year 2022Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Life/Time: Mortality & DeathTags Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction, Children's Literature

Publication year 2016Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: MemoryTags Historical Fiction, Colonial America, Children's Literature

Ashes (2016), a young adult historical novel by American author Laurie Halse Anderson, is the third and final book in the Seeds of America series. This guide refers to the 2016 Atheneum eBook edition.Plot SummaryIsabel Gardener and Curzon Smith, two black teenagers who escaped slavery during the American Revolution, have been on the run together for five years. After serving at Valley Forge, they’re travelling through the Eastern states, looking for Isabel’s little sister Ruth... Read Ashes Summary


Publication year 2001Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Emotions/Behavior: FearTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature, Asian Literature, Realistic Fiction, Arts / Culture, History: Asian, Poverty, American Literature

A Single Shard (2001) is an award-winning, middle-grade historical novel by Korean American author Linda Sue Park. Park has written multiple children’s books, picture books, and volumes of poetry. Some of her better-known titles include A Long Walk to Water (2010), The Thirty-Nine Clues series in nine volumes (2010), and Prairie Lotus (2020). Much of her historical fiction is based on Korean history. A Single Shard is intended for readers in grades 5 to 7... Read A Single Shard Summary


Publication year 2022Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Grandparents, Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Mothers, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Society: Community, Society: Education, Values/Ideas: Trust & DoubtTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Education

Publication year 2014Genre Short Story Collection, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: ConflictTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Publication year 2015Genre Graphic Novel/Book, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Win & Lose, Values/Ideas: Science & Technology, Relationships: Teams, Society: Education, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: RegretTags Realistic Fiction, Science / Nature, Education, Children's Literature, Bullying, Trauma / Abuse / Violence

Publication year 1962Genre Novel, FictionTags Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction, Children's Literature

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle is a science fiction novel for young readers, published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux in 1962. The book follows Margaret “Meg” Murry, her brilliant younger brother Charles Murry, and Calvin O’Keefe on a journey across the universe to rescue Meg’s father from the clutches of a malignant presence. The novel won several children’s book awards, including the Newbery Medal (1963), the Sequoyah Book Award, and the Lewis Carroll... Read A Wrinkle In Time Summary


Publication year 2001Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionTags Children's Literature

Bad Boy is a 2001 memoir spanning roughly the first seventeen years of YA writer Walter Dean Myers’s life. In it, Myers explores how the time he spent growing up in a mixed-race, working-class family in 1940s-and-50s Harlem impacted his eventual career as a writer.To do so, Myers first explains his complicated family history: Myers’s biological parents were both black, but he was adopted at a very young age by his father’s first wife, Florence—a... Read Bad Boy: A Memoir Summary


Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Relationships: Friendship, Society: Community, Relationships: Siblings, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Society: Education, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Society: Politics & Government, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: ConflictTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Publication year 2010Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: ForgivenessTags Children's Literature

Because of Mr. Terupt is a middle-grade novel takes place in Mr. Terupt’s fifth grade class at Snow Hill School in Connecticut. The story is told from the perspectives of seven individual students in Mr. Terupt’s class. The novel addresses themes of bullying, divorce, teen pregnancy, moral prejudice, special needs, death, and guilt.Author Rob Buyea taught third grade, fourth grade, and high school before becoming a full-time writer. He also has a background coaching wrestling... Read Because of Mr. Terupt Summary


Publication year 2000Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: GriefTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Because of Winn-Dixie is a middle-grade novel by Kate DiCamillo published in 2000 by Candlewick Books. It follows main character Opal as she learns to love her new home in Naomi, Florida with the help of a stray dog named Winn-Dixie. Steeped in the traditions of Southern literature, the book won a Newbery Honor and a Parents’ Choice Gold Award, among other awards. Note on Edition: This guide uses the 2000 edition published by Candlewick Books... Read Because of Winn-Dixie Summary


Publication year 2004Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Relationships: Siblings, Society: Community, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Identity: Language, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: HopeTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction

Publication year 1974Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: FriendshipTags Bullying, Realistic Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Children's Literature, Trauma / Abuse / Violence

Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: The Past, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Climate, Natural World: Environment, Natural World: Food, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Grandparents, Relationships: Mothers, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Safety & DangerTags Fantasy, Magical Realism, Children's Literature

Publication year 1996Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Beauty, Natural World: Environment, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Realistic Fiction, Action / Adventure, Animals, Children's Literature

Brian’s Winter (1996), a young adult novel by Gary Paulsen, is the third book in the Hatchet series of survival stories. Brian’s Winter chronologically follows Hatchet, acting as an alternate ending to Hatchet in which Brian is not rescued, and must continue to survive in the woods through the winter. Paulsen uses his own firsthand knowledge of winter survival skills to create a vivid and realistic portrayal of winter in the Canadian woods.This guide refers... Read Brian's Winter Summary


Publication year 1977Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Identity: Masculinity, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: GriefTags Classic Fiction, Grief / Death, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Children's Literature, Poverty

Since its 1977 publication, Bridge to Terabithia has become a classic children’s novel. The author, Katherine Paterson, wrote the novel after her son’s best friend was killed by lightning. The novel won a Newbery Medal and is beloved by readers all over the world. Bridge to Terabithia explores the transformative power of friendship, the power of childhood imagination, and the process of grief. Because Bridge to Terabithia deals with grief and death, it is best... Read Bridge To Terabithia Summary


Publication year 2014Genre Novel/Book in Verse, NonfictionThemes Identity: Race, Values/Ideas: Justice & InjusticeTags Race / Racism, Narrative / Epic Poem, Auto/Biographical Fiction, Children's Literature

Brown Girl Dreaming (2014) is a memoir in verse by Jacqueline Woodson, a children’s and young adult fiction writer. Published by Nancy Paulsen Books, a division of the Penguin Group, the memoir won the National Book Award, the Newberry Honor Book Award, and the Coretta Scott King Award.Plot SummaryBrown Girl Dreaming covers Woodson’s childhood, detailing her family history and her beginnings as a writer. Woodson was born in Columbus, Ohio, on February 12, 1963, the... Read Brown Girl Dreaming Summary


Publication year 1999Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Society: ColonialismTags Historical Fiction, Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature, Race / Racism, Poverty, African American Literature

Bud, Not Buddy is a 1999 children’s realistic historical novel by American author Christopher Paul Curtis. Ten-year-old protagonist Bud Caldwell is an orphan living in Flint, Michigan in 1936. Four years after the death of his mother and after a series of abusive and neglectful foster homes, Bud sets out to find his father, whom he believes is the locally famous jazz musician Herman E. Calloway of Grand Rapids. Bud encounters a host of characters... Read Bud, Not Buddy Summary


Publication year 1979Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Values/Ideas: Trust & DoubtTags Mystery / Crime Fiction, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Children's Literature, Relationships

James and Deborah Howe’s 1979 children’s novel Bunnicula: A Rabbit Tale of Mystery is the first book in a series of seven. The novel was written by the husband-and-wife duo, but Deborah Howe died before their work was published. Bunnicula has been adapted for the stage and turned into various animated series.Plot SummaryBunnicula follows the Monroe family, which consists of Mr. and Mrs. Monroe, their two sons Pete and Toby, Chester the cat, and Harold... Read Bunnicula: A Rabbit-Tale of Mystery Summary


Publication year 1939Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Siblings, Emotions/Behavior: GratitudeTags Classic Fiction, Children's Literature, Historical Fiction, Auto/Biographical Fiction

Publication year 1935Genre Novel, FictionTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature

Caddie Woodlawn by Carol Ryrie Brink is a work of historical fiction written for young adult audiences. It was originally published in 1935 and is set in the 1860s, during the time of westward expansion and pioneers. Much of the book is based on Brink’s grandmother’s stories about her family and their adventures as settlers in Wisconsin. In fact, many of the locations mentioned in the text can still be visited today. Caddie Woodlawn won... Read Caddie Woodlawn Summary


Publication year 2018Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionTags Children's Literature

Call Me American is a memoir written by Somali author Abdi Nor Iftin, co-authored with Max Alexander and published in 2018. It documents Iftin’s escape from a war-town Somali, buoyed by his love of American culture.Plot SummaryAbdi Nor Iftin is born in Somalia “probably in 1985” (7). Both of his parents are nomadic farmers who move to the city of Mogadishu during a drought in the 1970s. The residents of Mogadishu look down on the... Read Call Me American Summary


Publication year 1997Genre Graphic Novel/Book, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: FriendshipTags Humor, Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature

Dav Pilkey’s graphic novel for children, The Adventures of Captain Underpants (1997), spawned a long list of sequels and adaptations in other media. The Captain Underpants series has won numerous awards, including the Garden State Children's Book Awards (Children's Fiction) 2000, the Buckeye Children's Book Award (Grades 3-5) 2001, and the Pennsylvania Young Reader's Choice Award (Grades K-3) 2000.Plot SummaryThe story begins by introducing two best friends, George and Harold. They love to pull pranks... Read Captain Underpants Summary


Publication year 1964Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: FamilyTags Fantasy, Classic Fiction, Humor, Children's Literature, British Literature

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (1964) is a fantasy children’s novel by renowned British author Roald Dahl, a man known for his strange and wondrous imagination. The story follows Charlie Bucket, who wins a tour in a chocolate factory owned by the eccentric Mr. Willy Wonka. In the years following publication, the novel became a classic and spawned two major film adaptations, one starring Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka (1971) and a remake starring Johnny... Read Charlie And The Chocolate Factory Summary


Publication year 1972Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Life/Time: Aging, Values/Ideas: Power & GreedTags Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Humor, Children's Literature

Publication year 1952Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Life/Time: Aging, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Relationships: Friendship, Values/Ideas: Fate, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Natural World: Animals, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: GratitudeTags Classic Fiction, Allegory / Fable / Parable, Children's Literature, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Animals

Charlotte’s Web was written by E. B. White, illustrated by Garth Williams, and first published in 1952. It is considered a quintessential American children’s fiction novel and has been adapted into two films (1973, 2006) and a stage musical. Over the years, Charlotte’s Web has been awarded the Newbery Honor Award for children’s books, the George C. Stone Center for Children’s Books Recognition of Merit Award, the Laura Ingalls Wilder Award, and the Massachusetts Children’s... Read Charlotte's Web Summary


Publication year 2004Genre Novel, FictionTags Mystery / Crime Fiction, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature

Chasing Vermeer is the debut novel of children’s author Blue Balliett. First published in 2004, the book is a children’s art mystery novel. The novel won several awards, including the Edgar Award for Best Juvenile Novel, the Agatha Award for Best YA Novel, and the Chicago Tribune Prize for Young Adult Fiction. An interactive experience, the novel uses maps, pentominoes (or Tetris-like puzzles), and coded graphics by illustrator Brett Helquist, to hide secret messages.The novel’s... Read Chasing Vermeer Summary


Publication year 2020Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Revenge, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Values/Ideas: Science & Technology, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Relationships: Teams, Relationships: Family, Natural World: Climate, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Environment, Self Discovery, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Win & Lose, Relationships: Friendship, Natural World: Place, Values/Ideas: Order & ChaosTags Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Mystery / Crime Fiction, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature

Publication year 2020Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Identity: Race, Life/Time: Aging, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Relationships: Grandparents, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: The Past, Relationships: Fathers, Values/Ideas: Equality, Society: Politics & Government, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Safety & DangerTags African American Literature, Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Action / Adventure, Civil Rights / Jim Crow, History: U.S., Black Lives Matter, Grief / Death

Publication year 2006Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Relationships: FriendshipTags Realistic Fiction, Humor, Children's Literature

Sara Pennypacker’s Clementine is a short chapter book for elementary-aged readers. Marla Frazee’s black and white illustrations bring the text to life. Clementine and the subsequent books in the series have won numerous awards; notably, Clementine is a New York Times bestseller and the winner of the 2007 Boston Globe/Horn Book Award. Little, Brown and Company published Clementine in 2006. This study guide refers to the 2008 first trade paperback edition of the book.Plot SummaryClementine... Read Clementine Summary


Publication year 2009Genre Novel, FictionTags Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Bullying, Children's Literature

Mary Downing Hahn published her 29th book for young readers, Closed for the Season, in 2010. Closed for the Season is a young adult mystery novel that received the coveted Mystery Writers of America Edgar Award. Hahn, an American author, has received a great number of accolades for her work in young adult fiction, among which includes the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction and a series of state awards.Logan Forbes is the 13 year... Read Closed for the Season Summary


Publication year 2013Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Gender, Identity: DisabilityTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature, Disability

Counting by 7s is Holly Goldberg Sloan's first middle-grade novel, published in 2013. A New York Times bestseller, this contemporary story draws upon themes relevant to Sloan's own life. The novel is set in present-day Bakersfield, California, which Sloan says is “emblematic of the characters,” in the sense that it is “often overlooked.”Plot SummaryThe novel's protagonist is 12-year-old Willow Chance, a “highly gifted” girl fascinated by the number seven, plants, and medicine. She knows she... Read Counting by 7s Summary


Publication year 1996Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Teams, Relationships: Siblings, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Equality, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Relationships: Fathers, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Values/Ideas: Win & Lose, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Relationships: Grandparents, Self DiscoveryTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature, Sports, Bullying

Publication year 2015Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Fantasy, Animals, Children's Literature

Crenshaw is Katherine Applegate’s 2015 middle grade novel about Jackson, a young boy whose family is struggling with financial instability, and his imaginary friend, Crenshaw, a human-sized cat with a fondness for bubble baths and doing cartwheels. Narrated by Jackson in the first person, the story explores the impact of poverty on family and community, the need to reconcile fact and fancy, and how to face the unknown and unpreventable productively. The novel is divided... Read Crenshaw Summary


Publication year 1975Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Society: ClassTags Children's Literature, Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Humor, Finance / Money / Wealth

British author Roald Dahl first published Danny the Champion of the World in 1975. This award-winning children’s novel was adapted into a made-for-TV movie in 1989. The story follows Danny and his single-father, William, as they concoct a plan to poach all of the pheasants from a mean, rich landowner’s woods. Dahl’s children’s books are humorous and unsentimental, usually featuring a heroic young protagonist and an obnoxious adult antagonist. Dahl’s other works for children include The Gremlins... Read Danny, the Champion of the World Summary


Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & BetrayalTags Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature, Animals

Publication year 2005Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: FamilyTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature

Day of Tears: A Novel in Dialogue is a young adult book of historical fiction written by Julius Lester and published in 2005. It was the 2006 winner of the Coretta Scott King Award as well as numerous other YA awards. The book concerns the largest slave auction in American history, which took place on March 2 and 3, 1859, in Savannah, Georgia. Plantation owner Pierce Butler sells more than 400 persons to repay his... Read Day of Tears Summary


Publication year 1983Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: FamilyTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction

Published in 1983 and winner of the 1984 Newberry Award, Beverly Cleary’s Dear Mr. Henshaw marks a departure for the novelist known for her books that celebrate the whimsy and adventurousness of childhood. Dear Mr. Henshaw is an epistolary novel, in which protagonist and aspiring author Leigh Botts narrates his story through letters and diary entries addressed to his favorite author, Mr. Henshaw. Leigh begins writing yearly letters to Mr. Henshaw in second grade but... Read Dear Mr. Henshaw Summary


Publication year 2020Genre Graphic Novel/Book, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Relationships: FathersTags Fantasy, Humor, Action / Adventure, Animals, Children's Literature

Publication year 2018Genre Graphic Novel/Book, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Love, Identity: Disability, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Nurture v. Nature, Relationships: FamilyTags Humor, Animals, Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature

Publication year 2021Genre Graphic Novel/Book, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: FamilyTags Humor, Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature, Animals

Publication year 2014Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Relationships: Siblings, Self DiscoveryTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Humor

Publication year 2016Genre Graphic Novel/Book, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Fame, Relationships: Siblings, Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: FamilyTags Humor, Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction

Publication year 2002Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Relationships: Siblings, Self DiscoveryTags Humor, Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Double Fudge (2002) is the fifth and final book in the popular children’s series by bestselling American author Judy Blume. The Fudge series begins with Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing and includes Superfudge, Fudge-a-Mania, and Otherwise Known as Sheila the Great. The Fudge series was published across three decades and follows the lives of the Hatcher family, and most of the novels feature Peter Hatcher and his younger brother Fudge, who is always getting... Read Double Fudge Summary


Publication year 1975Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Community, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Fathers, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Identity: RaceTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Asian Literature

Originally published in 1975, Dragonwings is a children’s historical novel by Chinese American author Laurence Yep. The story was inspired by the life of Fung Joe Guey (Feng Ru), a Chinese immigrant who came to the United States in the early 1900s and earned acclaim for his work as a pioneer airplane designer and aviator. The book is part of Yep’s Golden Mountain Chronicles, a series of 10 novels that explore the long history of... Read Dragonwings Summary


Publication year 2004Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: FamilyTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie is narrated by Steven Alper, a thirteen-year-old whose life is turned upside down when his five-year-old brother, Jeffrey, is diagnosed with leukemia. Before his brother’s diagnosis, Steven is a wisecracking 8th-grader attempting to navigate the trials of early adolescence. He is an enthusiastic and talented drummer and has a crush on schoolmate Renee Albert. However, Steven’s life changes forever when one morning, Jeffrey falls off a stool and hits his... Read Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie Summary


Publication year 1996Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Siblings, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Self Discovery, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Action / Adventure, Survival Fiction, Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Natural Disaster

Publication year 2015Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Siblings, Values/Ideas: MusicTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Echo is a young-adult novel about the power of music to unite individuals across time, and even save lives: the wide-reaching novel follows an enchanted harmonica to 1933 in Germany, 1934 in Pennsylvania, and 1942 in California, before uniting the characters we meet along the way at Carnegie Hall in 1951. Covering the rise of Nazism in Germany, the tail end of the Great Depression in the United States, and the beginning of U.S. involvement... Read Echo Summary


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Publication year 2014Genre Graphic Novel/Book, FictionThemes Identity: Gender, Relationships: Friendship, Identity: DisabilityTags Humor, Disability, Children's Literature

El Deafo is a 2014 semi-autobiographical, graphic novel by American author and illustrator Cece Bell. Bell, who was born deaf, recounts her childhood in the format of a guide starring an anthropomorphic rabbit, “Cece.” The book endeavors to undermine negative representations of deafness by representing Cece’s difference as valid, even empowering, with the assistance of modern technology. Throughout the book, Cece occasionally assumes a superhero persona, “El Deafo.” El Deafo challenges common misconceptions about disabilities... Read El Deafo Summary


Publication year 2007Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: FamilyTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature

Roland Smith’s Elephant Run (2007) is a middle grade adventure novel that takes place during World War II. Narrator Nick Freestone tries to escape the war and moves from the deadly bombings in London to his father's teak plantation in Burma. Unfortunately for Nick, the war follows him to Burma, and Japanese soldiers soon imprison him and his childhood friend Mya at his family home. Aided by the ancient monk Hilltop, Mya and Nick set... Read Elephant Run Summary


Publication year 2007Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Relationships: FamilyTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature

Elijah of Buxton is a 2007 middle grade novel by American writer Christopher Paul Curtis. Set in the 1850s, it follows 11-year-old Elijah Freeman, the first freeborn child of Buxton, a Canadian settlement of escaped slaves, as he makes a dangerous journey into the United States. The novel was a Newbery Honor Book and won the Coretta Scott King Award. Plot SummaryThe story opens as Elijah investigates strange animal tracks with his friend Cooter. A local... Read Elijah of Buxton Summary


Publication year 2013Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Values/Ideas: Literature, Life/Time: The PastTags Children's Literature, Action / Adventure

Publication year 1990Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Life/Time: AgingTags Children's Literature, Fantasy, Humor, Animals

Publication year 2016Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Relationships: FamilyTags Korean Literature, Asian Literature, Children's Literature

Every Falling Star: The True Story of How I Survived and Escaped North Korea is a 2016 memoir by Sungju Lee and Susan McClelland. This first-person narrative nonfiction work recounts author Sungju Lee’s childhood in North Korea, surviving on the streets as a young boy after he was abandoned by his parents, as well as his harrowing escape at age 16. He is now a consultant and advocate for the reunification of the Korean Peninsula... Read Every Falling Star Summary


Publication year 2001Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Society: CommunityTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature, Humor

Renowned Canadian/American author Polly Horvath published the middle-grade novel everything on a Waffle in 2001. Over two years, the book received numerous accolades, including Mr. Christie’s Book Award, the Boston Globe Horn Book Award, the ALSC Notable Children’s Book, a Newbery Honor Medal, and the Sheila A. Egoff Children’s Literature Prize. Written in the first person, 11-year-old narrator Primrose tells of her parents disappearing in a typhoon off the coast of British Columbia. Primrose discounts... Read Everything on a Waffle Summary


Publication year 2006Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Natural World: Place, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Relationships: Siblings, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Animals, Relationships: Family, Natural World: Environment, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Values/Ideas: Music, Identity: Gender, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Relationships: GrandparentsTags Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature, Magical Realism

Fablehaven was written by Brandon Mull and first published in 2006. It is the first in a series about an ecological preserve for magical creatures. In the novel, middle-school-aged siblings Kendra and Seth take a trip to their grandparents’ land in rural Connecticut, which they soon realize is hiding magic of all types. The siblings explore the magical world they have discovered while learning how to be both brave and responsible.Fablehaven deals with themes concerning... Read Fablehaven Summary


Publication year 2016Genre Novel, FictionTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Falling Over Sideways (2016) is a popular middle-grade novel by Jordan Sonnenblick. The novel tells the story of 14-year-old Claire Goldsmith and the events that unfold during her eighth-grade year after her father has a stroke one morning. Claire must face dance school, bullies, her father’s rehabilitation, and a strange new home life, all while trying not to be, look, or feel “awkward” or “unlucky” in her new grade. The narrative further addresses issues of... Read Falling Over Sideways Summary


Publication year 1970Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Natural World: Animals, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Values/Ideas: Power & GreedTags Animals, Children's Literature, Action / Adventure

Fantastic Mr. Fox (1970) is a children’s novel by British author Roald Dahl. One of Dahl’s most acclaimed and enduring titles, the novel follows an anthropomorphic fox—the titular Mr. Fox—and his animal friends, who live near three cruel farmers. Although the farmers continually attempt to kill the animals, Mr. Fox and his friends are able to outsmart them and steal all the food they want. Fantastic Mr. Fox, like many of Dahl’s works, is a... Read Fantastic Mr Fox Summary


Publication year 1933Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Self Discovery, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Animals, Society: CommunityTags Classic Fiction, Children's Literature, Historical Fiction, Agriculture, Animals, History: U.S., Parenting, Religion / Spirituality, Science / Nature, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Publication year 2010Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Society: Education, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & PrideTags Education, Children's Literature

Fatty Legs: A True Story is the 2010 autobiographical account of author Margaret-Olemaun Pokiak-Fenton’s childhood experience in one of Canada’s residential schools for Indigenous children in the 19th and 20th centuries. This study guide is based on the 10th anniversary edition, in which several supplemental chapters written by Pokiak-Fenton’s daughter-in-law explain the larger context of colonialism that created the residential school system. These residential schools represented an attempt to strip Indigenous students of their cultural... Read Fatty Legs Summary


Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Values/Ideas: Music, Natural World: Appearance & RealityTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature

Finding Langston, Lesa Cline-Ransome’s debut novel for middle-grade readers, is the story of an 11-year-old boy named Langston who loses his home but finds himself. The book received numerous accolades following its publication in 2018, including the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction. In 2020 Cline-Ransome published Leaving Lymon, a companion novel to Finding Langston that tells the story of Langston’s bully Lymon. This study guide refers to the 2018 Holiday House edition.Plot SummaryFinding Langston... Read Finding Langston Summary


Publication year 2015Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Identity: Gender, Identity: DisabilityTags Realistic Fiction, Bullying, Disability, Children's Literature

Fish in a Tree is a 2015 middle-grade novel by American author Lynda Mullaly Hunt. It follows the story of a middle-school girl named Ally, who is artistically and mathematically talented but unable to read due to her dyslexia. Throughout Ally’s school career, she uses humor, misbehavior, and feigned sickness to distract from her learning difficulty, doing everything in her power to avoid writing and reading tasks. Ally’s struggles are magnified by the fact that... Read Fish in a Tree Summary


Publication year 2013Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Relationships: FriendshipTags Humor, Children's Literature, Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Animals

Flora and Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures is a middle-grade magical realism novel written by Kate DiCamillo, illustrated by K. G. Campbell, and originally published in 2013. DiCamillo is a renowned middle-grade author who also wrote Because of Winn-Dixie and The Tale of Despereaux, among other books. Flora and Ulysses was the recipient of the John Newbery Medal for the Most Distinguished Contribution to American Literature for Children in 2014. It was also adapted into a... Read Flora And Ulysses Summary


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Publication year 2005Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Good & EvilTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Teenage Noah Underwood finds himself facing the unpleasant task of visiting his dad in jail on Father’s Day. Paine Underwood has just sunk a casino boat called the Coral Queen because its owner, Dusty Muleman, has been dumping waste from the casino’s toilets into the bay and poisoning the surrounding waters. Paine is an environmental activist who sometimes gets carried away, as his long-suffering wife Donna can attest.Since Paine hasn’t been able to prove Dusty’s... Read Flush Summary


Publication year 2013Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Relationships: FathersTags Fantasy, Humor, Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature

Publication year 2010Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Relationships: Friendship, Values/Ideas: Justice & InjusticeTags Mystery / Crime Fiction, Action / Adventure, Humor, Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Animals

Publication year 1978Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Society: CommunityTags Realistic Fiction, Humor, Children's Literature

Publication year 1996Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Language, Society: Education, Society: Community, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: ConflictTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Humor, Modern Classic Fiction

Frindle is a 1996 middle grade novel by children’s author Andrew Clements and illustrated by Brian Selznick. The story follows a fifth-grade boy named Nick Allen who—both for fun and to exasperate his strict language arts teacher who has a special reverence for vocabulary—creates a new word for pen: “frindle.” Nick’s new word captures more attention than he expected, and soon the town and nation engage in a controversy surrounding how people ought to use... Read Frindle Summary


Publication year 1967Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Siblings, Values/Ideas: ArtTags Classic Fiction, Children's Literature, Mystery / Crime Fiction, Action / Adventure

From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler is a 1967 children’s novel by E. L. Konigsburg. With elements of mystery and adventure, the novel follows two children who run away from home to hide out in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where they are drawn into a mystery involving a newly acquired sculpture, even as they learn about themselves and the world around them. Praised for its humor and characters, the novel won... Read From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler Summary


Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature, Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Front Desk is the debut novel of Asian-American author Kelly Yang. First published in 2018, the children’s book became a New York Times bestseller and was mentioned on multiple Best Books of the Year lists including NPR, Kirkus, Publishers Weekly, the Washington Post, Amazon, School Library Journal, the New York Public Library, and the Chicago Public Library. Front Desk also made ALA’s Booklist of the Top Ten Debut Novels of 2018. It won the 2019... Read Front Desk Summary


Publication year 1990Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Humor

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Publication year 2015Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Shame & PrideTags Realistic Fiction, LGBTQ, Children's Literature

Genderqueer writer Alex Gino wrote George in response to an unfulfilled, youthful wish for a positive representation of a transgender person. The novel tells the story of ten-year-old George, who is anatomically a boy, but knows she is a girl. George has won the Stonewall Book Award, the Lambda Literary Award, and the E.B. White Honor.The novel opens with George sneaking into the bathroom to look at her secret stash of girls’ magazines, concealing them... Read George Summary


Publication year 1981Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Aging, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Animals, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: FathersTags Fantasy, Humor, Children's Literature, Magical Realism, British Literature

Publication year 1991Genre Novel, FictionTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature, American Revolution

George Washington’s Socks is a 1991 children’s novel by American writer Elvira Woodruff. Combining aspects of historical fiction with children’s fantasy, George Washington’s Socks is the first installment of Woodruff’s Time Travel Adventures series. Its primary audience is middle grade readers aged 8 to 11. Additionally, teachers of literature and history share the book with classes at a variety of grade levels.Plot SummaryTen-year-old Matt Carlton can’t wait to get to the inaugural meeting and campout... Read George Washington's Socks Summary


Publication year 2016Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Teams, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Ghost is a 2016 novel by American author Jason Reynolds. Reynolds began his writing career as a poet and published his first novel, When I Was the Greatest, in 2014. Reynolds has won several accolades, including a Kirkus Prize, an NAACP Image Award, a Schneider Family Book Award, a Newbery Medal, and a Carnegie Medal. From 2020 to 2022, he was the Library of Congress’s National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, and he won the... Read Ghost Summary


Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Historical Fiction, Race / Racism, Social Justice, Children's Literature

Ghost Boys is a middle-grade novel by Jewell Parker Rhodes, an award-winning writer on the Black experience. Set in contemporary Chicago, the novel is a first-person narrative about the life and death of 12-year-old Jerome Rogers, a boy Officer Moore kills one afternoon as Jerome plays with a toy gun near his neighborhood. A popular and critical success that taps into the modern civil rights movement that is Black Lives Matter, this novel is a... Read Ghost Boys Summary


Publication year 2014Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Identity: Race, Self Discovery, Relationships: FamilyTags Fairy Tale / Folklore, Mystery / Crime Fiction, Fantasy, Children's Literature

Publication year 2003Genre Novel, FictionTags Children's Literature, Fantasy

Gregor the Overlander is the first of a five-book series, The Underland Chronicles, about Gregor and his visits to the mysterious Underland. The author, Suzanne Collins, is also well known for her work on Nickelodeon, including television shows Clarissa Explains it All and the Mysteries of Shelby Woo. After finishing The Underland Chronicles, Suzanne Collins went on to write the international Bestseller The Hunger Games, which was later made into four successful motion pictures. Gregor... Read Gregor the Overlander Summary


Publication year 1964Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Self DiscoveryTags Classic Fiction, Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Mystery / Crime Fiction

Harriet the Spy (1964) is author and illustrator Louise Fitzhugh’s best-known novel. It appeared on The New York Times Book Review’s list “The Year’s Best Juveniles” the year it was published and is an enduring favorite among middle-grade readers. It is frequently included on lists of children’s classics, including the New York Public Library’s list of 100 Great Children’s Books. Fitzhugh published two other novels featuring the characters from Harriet the Spy: The Long Secret... Read Harriet the Spy Summary


Publication year 1998Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Values/Ideas: Fate, Society: Community, Relationships: Friendship, Values/Ideas: FameTags Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is a 1998 young adult fantasy novel by J.K. Rowling, the second in the Harry Potter series. The story follows Harry’s tumultuous second year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, including an encounter with Voldemort, the wizard who killed Harry’s parents. Against this fantastic backdrop, Rowling examines such themes as death, fame, friendship, choice, and prejudice. Upon release, the novel became a worldwide bestseller and won several... Read Harry Potter And The Chamber Of Secrets Summary


Publication year 1997Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Natural World: Nurture v. Nature, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Fate, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Values/Ideas: Power & GreedTags Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature

Publication year 2004Genre Novel/Book in Verse, FictionThemes Life/Time: Aging, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Relationships: Teams, Relationships: Siblings, Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Values/Ideas: Art, Life/Time: Birth, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: FamilyTags Relationships, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Children's Literature

Publication year 2006Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: FriendshipTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Sports

Heat is a young adult novel written by Mike Lupica and published in 2006. Focusing on the Little League baseball culture of New York City, the novel follows Michael Arroyo, a pitching phenom and Cuban immigrant, as he pursues a trip to the Little League World Series. Michael and his brother, Carlos, recently lost their Papi from a heart attack. They keep his death a secret out of fear that government officials will separate them... Read Heat Summary


Publication year 1881Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Grandparents, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Environment, Natural World: Flora/plants, Natural World: Food, Natural World: AnimalsTags Classic Fiction, Children's Literature, Historical Fiction, Romanticism / Romantic Period

Swiss author Johanna Spyri originally published the middle-grade fiction novel Heidi in German in two volumes in 1880. The novel quickly became a beloved classic children’s book that has since been adapted into 25 film and television versions, including a 1968 made-for-TV movie and a very popular anime series in 1974. It has sold more than 50 million copies worldwide. Spyri was born in Hirzel, a Zurich village that shares a border with the German... Read Heidi Summary


Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Hello, Universe (2017) is the third novel by Filipino-American author Erin Entrada Kelly. It is intended for children aged 8 to 12. The title won the 2018 Newbury Medal, and its author has garnered other awards for previous novels, including a Golden Kite Award and an Asian/Pacific American Award for Children’s Literature. Kelly’s other books include Blackbird Fly (2015), The Land of Forgotten Girls (2016), You Go First (2018), and Lalani of the Distant Sea... Read Hello, Universe Summary


Publication year 1973Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Humor, Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

In the novel How to Eat Fried Worms, a boy accepts a $50 bet from a friend to eat 15 worms in 15 days, but as he nears victory, he faces a flurry of nasty tricks and traps that go wildly out of control. Written by Thomas Rockwell, son of the famous American illustrator Norman Rockwell, and published in 1973, the book sold over three million copies, won several awards, was a target of censors... Read How To Eat Fried Worms Summary


Publication year 2007Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Class, Natural World: Animals, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Realistic Fiction, Animals, Children's Literature, Class

Publication year 2022Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Disability, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Friendship, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Self DiscoveryTags Fantasy, Magical Realism, Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature, Health / Medicine

Publication year 2021Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Siblings, Values/Ideas: ArtTags Magical Realism, Children's Literature, Humor

Publication year 2011Genre Novel/Book in Verse, FictionThemes Relationships: FamilyTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature

The story opens in February 1975. Hà lives with her mother and three older brothers (Brother Quang, Brother Vũ, and Brother Khôi) in Saigon, South Vietnam. Hà knows her father, a naval officer, only through Mother’s stories and memories; he disappeared nine years earlier, a victim of the Communist Army of North Vietnam. Hà learns fractions, practices embroidery, and celebrates the start of the new lunar year on Tết (February 11). As spring and Hà’s... Read Inside Out And Back Again Summary


Publication year 1960Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Self Discovery, Natural World: Place, Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Environment, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / PerseveranceTags Historical Fiction, Action / Adventure, Survival Fiction, Children's Literature

Originally published in 1960, Scott O’Dell’s Island of the Blue Dolphins is a middle grade historical fiction/adventure novel. Karana, the protagonist and narrator, is only 12 when hunters land on her peaceful island home and kill many of her people, including her father. When the remaining villagers leave the island in search of a safe place to rebuild their lives, she stays behind and must learn to survive on her own. O’Dell drew inspiration from... Read Island of the Blue Dolphins Summary


Publication year 2012Genre Novel, FictionThemes Natural World: Environment, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: courageTags Historical Fiction, Natural Disaster, Action / Adventure, Survival Fiction, Children's Literature

Publication year 1961Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / PerseveranceTags Fantasy, Classic Fiction, Humor, Children's Literature, Magical Realism, Animals, Action / Adventure

James and the Giant Peach, by British author Roald Dahl was first published in 1961. This critically acclaimed children’s novel was made into an award-winning film in 1996. Dahl was born in 1916 in Wales and, in addition to writing both children and adult literature, he was a poet, screenwriter, and wartime fighter pilot. He is known as one of the 20th century’s greatest storytellers and has sold more than 250 million copies of his... Read James And The Giant Peach Summary


Publication year 1998Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: FamilyTags Humor, Children's Literature

Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key, a children’s novel appropriate for children aged 10 years and older, was written by Jack Gantos. The book was initially published in 1998 by Square Fish, a trademark of Macmillan Publishing Group; the work was a National Book Award Finalist, an American Library Association notable children’s book, and the School Library Journal’s book of the year. The novel’s 10-year-old protagonist, Joey Pigza, deals with an unnamed hyperactive disorder, abandonment, and... Read Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key Summary


Publication year 1943Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Society: War, Society: Politics & Government, Self Discovery, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: courageTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature, Action / Adventure, American Revolution

Originally published in 1943, Esther Forbes’s Johnny Tremain is a classic middle-grade historical fiction/adventure novel. After a prideful accident ends 14-year-old Johnny Tremain’s promising career as a silversmith, his search for a new trade leads to his direct involvement in the early events of the American Revolution. The novel won a Newbery Medal and explores themes of self-sacrifice, humility, and change. Citations in this study guide refer to the 2018 eBook edition released by Houghton... Read Johnny Tremain Summary


Publication year 2001Genre Novel, FictionThemes Self Discovery, Natural World: Place, Natural World: Animals, Society: Community, Relationships: FriendshipTags Action / Adventure, Historical Fiction, Children's Literature, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Journey to the River Sea by Eva Ibbotson is a historical children’s fiction novel published in 2002. The story takes place in the Amazon Basin in the early 1900s and follows Maia, an orphan from England who is invited to live with the Carters, distant relatives who own a rubber farm in Brazil. An English novelist known primarily for her children’s fiction, Ibbotson wrote this adventure story as a tribute to her late husband, who... Read Journey to the River Sea Summary


Publication year 1972Genre Novel, FictionThemes Natural World: Environment, Relationships: Fathers, Values/Ideas: Safety & DangerTags Action / Adventure, Animals, Science / Nature, Children's Literature

Jean Craighead George’s children’s novel Julie of the Wolves (1972), set in 20th-century Alaska, tells the story of a 13-year-old Inuit girl named Miyax who is lost in the wilderness after escaping a violent husband and a life that does not suit her. Miyax struggles to survive in a harsh environment as she attempts to make her way to San Francisco. A pack of wolves helps her, and she learns to deepen her appreciation of... Read Julie Of The Wolves Summary


Publication year 1998Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Music, Life/Time: Mortality & DeathTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature

The Last Days of Summer is an epistolary novel written by Steve Kluger and published in 1998. The novel offers a view into the life of Joey Margolis, an articulate, resourceful, tender-hearted young Jewish baseball fan who resides in Brooklyn, New York during the 1940s. His parents’ divorce results in Joey’s estrangement from his father, who marries a Manhattan socialite and fails to maintain contact with his son, as well as relocation from the Hasidic... Read Last Days of Summer Summary


Publication year 2007Genre Novella, FictionThemes Society: Economics, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: TeamsTags Humor, Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Business / Economics, Class, American Literature

Lawn Boy, a novella by Gary Paulsen published in 2007, is a middle grade chapter book about a 12-year-old boy who receives an old lawn mower as a birthday gift from his grandmother. As underwhelming as the gift appears, this moment launches a sequence of events that ends with the boy owning $480,000 and being the sole investor of a heavyweight boxer. Full of quirky humor and digestible lessons in capitalism, Paulsen’s story leads the... Read Lawn Boy Summary


Publication year 2012Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Mothers, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Society: Community, Self DiscoveryTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Bullying

Publication year 2005Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Relationships: FamilyTags Children's Literature, History: European

Life in a Jar: The Irena Sendler Project is a work of creative nonfiction written by Jack Mayer and originally published in 2010. The book tells two overlapping stories. One is about Irena Sendler, a Polish social worker who helped save 2,500 Jewish children in Warsaw from the Nazis during World War II. The other is about three high school girls—Liz Cambers, Megan Stewart, and Sabrina Coons. In 1999, the girls, with the help of... Read Life in a Jar: The Irena Sendler Summary


Publication year 1932Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: FamilyTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature, Western

Little House in the Big Woods was published in 1932 by American author Laura Ingalls Wilder. The first in a nine-book series, the autobiographical narrative relates the story of a family of homesteading pioneers living and laboring in Wisconsin. The story is illustrated by Garth Williams, whose drawings of the Ingalls family are often considered iconic and an integral part of the reading experience.This is a classic children’s tale set during an era of western... Read Little House in the Big Woods Summary


Publication year 1932Genre Novel, FictionTags Children's Literature, Historical Fiction, Classic Fiction, Western

The Ingalls family—parents Charles and Caroline, known as “Pa” and “Ma” in the book, and daughters Mary (age seven), Laura (age six) and Carrie (a baby)—live in Wisconsin in the late 1800s near their extended families. Pa hears that Native American territory on the prairies of Kansas will soon open up to settlement by whites and decides to move there to claim a good plot of land before the selection gets too competitive. The family... Read Little House on the Prairie Summary


Publication year 1886Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Mothers, Society: Class, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Natural World: Nurture v. NatureTags Classic Fiction, Children's Literature, Victorian Period, British Literature

Publication year 1871Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Education, Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Identity: Femininity, Identity: Masculinity, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Environment, Natural World: Place, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Teams, Self Discovery, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Classic Fiction, Historical Fiction, Children's Literature

Publication year 1868Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: FamilyTags Children's Literature, Classic Fiction, American Literature

Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women, originally published in 1868, is set in New England and inspired by her own family and life events.The novel begins with John Bunyan’s Christian allegory, The Pilgrim’s Progress, which influences the March girls—Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy—throughout their journey. They reference it heavily in the first part of the book, and it sets the stage until the end, as they grow into the women they are meant to become.Mr. March’s... Read Little Women Summary


Publication year 2016Genre Book, NonfictionTags Children's Literature, History: World

Written by Tod Olson and published in 2016, Lost in the Pacific, 1942 is a fictionalized account of the true story of soldiers lost at sea during World War II. The text begins with a Prologue describing a plane crash that strands the soldiers in the Pacific Ocean. The B-17 transport plane’s pilot, Captain Bill Cherry, plans to land at Canton Island to refuel. However, due to a faulty navigational antenna and a problem with... Read Lost in the Pacific 1942 Summary


Publication year 1934Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: GriefTags Children's Literature

Mary Poppins (1934) is a well-known novel written by P.L. Travers to which there are five sequels. Because the title character is a nanny with magical powers, many readers assume the novel is work of fantasy written for children; in fact, Travers intended Mary Poppins for adult readers, as the novel’s heroine is unexpectedly complex. Mary Poppins herself is often maliciously caustic; throughout the narrative, Travers mocks the class-conscious norms of Edwardian Britain against a... Read Mary Poppins Summary


Publication year 2008Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Art, Emotions/Behavior: ConflictTags Fantasy, Mystery / Crime Fiction, Animals, Children's Literature

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Publication year 1988Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / PerseveranceTags Fantasy, Classic Fiction, Children's Literature, Bullying

Roald Dahl’s 1998 children’s fantasy Matilda tells the darkly humorous story of a brilliant and kindly little girl who reads grown-up books, plays pranks on her emotionally abusive parents, and uses her telekinetic ability in her battles with a tyrannical school principal. Dahl is widely considered one the greatest children’s storytellers. His books have sold more than 250 million copies worldwide; they include Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, James and the Giant Peach, The BFG... Read Matilda Summary


Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Aging, Identity: Gender, Relationships: FamilyTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature, Class, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Merci Suárez Changes Gears (2018), a contemporary middle-grade novel by Meg Medina, centers on a young girl facing major changes to her family dynamics. The book won numerous awards, including the 2019 Newbery Medal. Medina, a founding member of the “We Need Diverse Books” movement, has written many picture books, young adult books, and middle-grade novels about strong girls who overcome adversity and step up to challenges.Plot SummaryEleven-year-old Merci Suárez is the child of Cuban... Read Merci Suárez Changes Gears Summary


Publication year 1995Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Relationships: Siblings, Emotions/Behavior: GriefTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Grief / Death

Publication year 1956Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Community, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Siblings, Natural World: Flora/plants, Natural World: AnimalsTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction

Publication year 1947Genre Novel, FictionThemes Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Environment, Relationships: FamilyTags Children's Literature, Classic Fiction, Historical Fiction, Animals

Publication year 2010Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Regret, Emotions/Behavior: Nostalgia, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: The Past, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Place, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Friendship, Society: Community, Society: Class, Society: Economics, Society: Immigration, Society: Education, Society: War, Society: Politics & Government, Society: Nation, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Trust & DoubtTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature, Mystery / Crime Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Moon Over Manifest is a 2010 novel by author Claire Vanderpool. It relates the story of 12-year-old Abilene Tucker, a drifting girl in search of her father, a home, and a sense of belonging. When the novel starts, her father, Gideon Tucker, has just sent Abilene to the Kansas town of Manifest, claiming that he can’t take her to Iowa, where he is allegedly taking a railroad job. It is 1936, and the Great Depression... Read Moon Over Manifest Summary


Publication year 1974Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Humor, Children's Literature

Publication year 2012Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Society: Education, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Publication year 1948Genre Novel, FictionThemes Natural World: Animals, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / PerseveranceTags Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature, Classic Fiction, Animals

In Ruth Stiles Gannett’s classic children’s adventure, My Father’s Dragon (1948), nine-year-old Elmer Elevator runs away to rescue a baby dragon held captive by the animals of Wild Island. Elmer must navigate a dense jungle and outwit fearsome adversaries, including tigers, a rhinoceros, and a lion in his expedition and, hopefully, realize his own dream of flying. As Elmer follows his quest, Gannett explores themes of courage, cleverness, and social sensitivity. My Father’s Dragon received... Read My Father's Dragon Summary


Publication year 2007Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Teams, Values/Ideas: EqualityTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

No Talking (2007) is a children’s novel by Andrew Clements, and the 2010 recipient of the California Young Reader Medal. In the novel, fifth-grade boys and girls compete to see who can talk the least at school. The competition causes an uproar among teachers and staff, exploring questions of authority in the school setting and building friendships across differences. Andrew Clements was a teacher, author, editor, and book publisher, best known for his debut novel, Frindle... Read No Talking Summary


Publication year 2002Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Relationships: Siblings, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Identity: Race, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Society: War, Relationships: FathersTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature, Auto/Biographical Fiction, American Civil War, Race / Racism, History: U.S.

Publication year 1989Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Good & EvilTags Children's Literature

Number the Stars is a 1989 middle-grade novel by Lois Lowry. A work of historical fiction, it focuses on the experiences of Annemarie Johansen, a 10-year-old Danish girl, living in Copenhagen during World War II. The book follows Annemarie and her family as they attempt to save their Jewish friends, the Rosens, from being sent to a Nazi concentration camp. The novel was critically acclaimed at the time of its release and won the 1990... Read Number the Stars Summary


Genre Novel, FictionTags Children's Literature

OCDaniel (2016), a young adult novel by American author Wesley King, follows Daniel Leigh, a teenager with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), who struggles with the symptoms of his condition along with his social rejection for being odd. More than anything else, Daniel wants to be “normal” and to meet the expectations of his father. Daniel’s world changes when he befriends Sara Malvern, a selectively mute girl known to the school as “Psycho Sara.” Daniel and Sara embark... Read OCDaniel Summary


Publication year 2011Genre Novel, FictionTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction

This is an overview of the first edition of Okay for Now, a humorous Young Adult novel by award-winning author, Gary D. Schmidt. Published in 2011, this children’s novel was nominated for the National Book Award for Young People’s literature.Plot SummaryDoug Swieteck, a middle schooler, is the child of an abusive, alcoholic father with two abusive, trouble-maker brothers, Christopher and Lucas. Doug’s soul comfort is making his mother, an avid homemaker and gardener, smile. Doug... Read Okay for Now Summary


Publication year 1942Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Western, Children's Literature, Historical Fiction

Published in 1956, Old Yeller is a classic historical fiction novel about the bond between a boy and his dog. With his Papa away on a cattle drive, 14-year-old Travis Coates gets help from a brave stray dog. Together, they defend the homestead and protect Travis’s mother and little brother. When a plague of hydrophobia threatens the family, Travis makes the difficult decision to kill Old Yeller. The novel poignantly explores themes of family and... Read Old Yeller Summary


Publication year 1937Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Natural World: Environment, Society: Community, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Historical Fiction, Auto/Biographical Fiction, Children's Literature, American Literature

Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Community, Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Self Discovery, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Order & Chaos, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Natural World: Flora/plants, Natural World: Animals, Natural World: FoodTags Fantasy, Magical Realism, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Children's Literature, Animals, Food, Relationships

Publication year 2010Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Gender, Values/Ideas: Music, Identity: DisabilityTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Gender / Feminism, Disability

Sharon Draper’s Out of My Mind, based on her own experiences parenting a disabled child, is a New York Times Bestselling novel told from the first-person perspective of 10-year-old Melody Brooks. Melody is a fifth-grade girl who, due to cerebral palsy, is unable to communicate verbally and is wheelchair-bound. The struggles and prejudice that Melody encounters provide a more intimate and personal view of the lives of people with physical disabilities. Atheneum Books for Young... Read Out of My Mind Summary


Publication year 1997Genre Novel/Book in Verse, FictionThemes Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Society: Class, Natural World: Place, Natural World: Climate, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Identity: Disability, Relationships: Siblings, Society: Community, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Society: Economics, Values/Ideas: Music, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Relationships: Mothers, Values/Ideas: Art, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Animals, Relationships: Fathers, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Natural World: Food, Society: EducationTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Agriculture, History: U.S., Great Depression

Karen Hesse’s Out of the Dust is a historical middle-grade novel in verse first published in 1997. Through 110 first-person free verse poems, the narrative tells the story of two years in the life of Billie Jo Kelby, young daughter of a struggling farming family in the Oklahoma Panhandle in the mid-1930s. After a tragic accident results in the death of Billie Jo’s mother and baby brother, she and her father must find a way... Read Out of the Dust Summary


Publication year 1961Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Natural World: Animals, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / PerseveranceTags Relationships, Children's Literature, Science / Nature, Animals

Publication year 2002Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Gender, Relationships: FamilyTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Parvana’s Journey by Deborah Ellis follows 13-year-old Parvana as she makes her way across war-torn Afghanistan in search of her mother and siblings. Published in 2002, this novel is a sequel to the international bestseller The Breadwinner, which was adapted as a 2017 animated film, and is the second in a series of four called The Breadwinner series. Although Parvana’s Journey is a work of fiction, Ellis bases the setting of the novel on the... Read Parvana's Journey Summary


Publication year 2016Genre Novel, FictionTags Action / Adventure, Children's Literature

Pax is a heartwarming Children’s book by Sara Pennypacker showcasing the friendship between a young boy named Peter and his Fox, Pax. Pax is illustrated by Jon Klassen and was on the National Book Award Longlist. Sara Pennypacker has published 19 books, including Pax (2016), Summer of the Gypsy Moths, as well as the bestselling Clementine and Stuart series.Plot SummaryIn Pax, war brews at an unknown time in an unknown place, and Peter’s father forces... Read Pax Summary


Publication year 2004Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Colonialism, Relationships: Teams, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Society: CommunityTags Fantasy, Fairy Tale / Folklore, Action / Adventure, Humor, Children's Literature, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Relationships, Trauma / Abuse / Violence, Poverty, American Literature

Publication year 2011Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Disability, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Fantasy, Children's Literature, Action / Adventure, Disability, Trauma / Abuse / Violence, Animals, American Literature

Peter Nimble and His Fantastic Eyes is a middle grade novel by Jonathan Auxier originally published in 2011. The novel encompasses a variety of genres: fantasy, the heroic quest, and even some Dickensian orphan flourishes, for good measure. It was a BookPage Magazine Best Book of the year, an ABA New Voices selection (2011), and a finalist for the Monica Hughes Award for science fiction and fantasy.This study guide references the edition published by Amulet... Read Peter Nimble and His Fantastic Eyes Summary


Publication year 1911Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Mothers, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Fairy Tale / Folklore, Classic Fiction, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature

Author James Matthew Barrie adapted his 1904 play Peter Pan; or, the Boy Who Wouldn't Grow Up to novel in 1911 with the hit Wendy and Peter, known today simply as the timeless classic Peter Pan. The mischievous character Peter Pan first appeared in Barrie's 1902 novel The Little White Bird and later in the 1906 novel Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens. Barrie's works explore themes of coming-of-age, the importance of imagination, the clash of... Read Peter Pan Summary


Publication year 2002Genre Novel, FictionTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction

Pictures of Hollis Woods by Patricia Reilly Giff is a novel for middle readers about a foster child, the eponymous Hollis Woods, and how she finds a family. It was originally published in 2002 and became a Newbery Honor Book in 2003. In 2007, Hallmark Hall of Fame adapted the novel into a movie. Giff is the author of many popular books for children, including series like Kids of the Polk Street School, Friends and... Read Pictures Of Hollis Woods Summary


Publication year 2011Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Mothers, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & BetrayalTags Food, Children's Literature

Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Gender, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Piecing Me Together by Renée Watson is a young adult novel published in 2017. In 2018, it won the Coretta Scott King Award from the American Library Award Association and was named a Newbery Honor Book by the Association for Library Service to Children. The novel comprises 76 chapters, each of which is given a bilingual title in English and Spanish. For example, Chapter 1 is titled “español - Spanish language,” and Chapter 2 is... Read Piecing Me Together Summary


Publication year 1945Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Children's Literature, Classic Fiction, Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Scandinavian Literature

Pippi Longstocking is a middle grade fiction novel written by Astrid Lindgren and originally published in Sweden in 1945. It was first translated into English and published in the United States in 1950. Pippi’s bold spirit and fiery nature were endearing and appealing in the post-war era and through many decades afterward. Her story illuminates the Imagination and Ingenuity of childhood, the Strength of Body and Mind embodied by young girls, and the importance of... Read Pippi Longstocking Summary


Publication year 2019Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Relationships: FamilyTags Bullying, Children's Literature, Religion / Spirituality, Education

Publication year 1913Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Relationships: FathersTags Classic Fiction, Historical Fiction, Children's Literature, Modernism

Pollyanna (1913) is the second novel by American author Eleanor H. Porter (1868-1921). The book was so successful that it topped the adult best-seller list, and Porter wrote a sequel titled Pollyanna Grows Up (1915) two years later.In the years following its publication, Pollyanna provided hope in the turbulent years of World War I, and it continued to capture the national imagination throughout the 20th century. Eleven more “glad books” featuring the heroine were written... Read Pollyanna Summary


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Publication year 1995Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Relationships: Family, Relationships: FriendshipTags Children's Literature, Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Animals

Publication year 2020Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Society: Community, Identity: Race, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Relationships: MothersTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature, Race / Racism, Colonialism / Postcolonialism

Publication year 1982Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Relationships: FriendshipTags Animals, Fantasy, Children's Literature

Publication year 1979Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Society: ClassTags Realistic Fiction, Humor, Children's Literature

Publication year 1981Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Humor, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Ramona Quimby, Age 8, (1981) is the sixth book in Beverly Cleary’s middle-grade Ramona series. It follows spirited and curious Ramona as she balances her excitement about entering the third grade with her trepidation over the Quimby family’s financial struggles. Through her misadventures, Ramona learns her place in the family and how to stand up for herself at school using determination and creativity. Known for realistic fiction, Cleary organizes the novel in a series of... Read Ramona Quimby Age 8 Summary


Publication year 1975Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Siblings, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / PerseveranceTags Realistic Fiction, Humor, Children's Literature

Publication year 1968Genre Novel, FictionTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction

Ramona the Pest by Beverly Cleary is a middle-grade novel published in 1968 by HarperCollins. Ramona the Pest is the second book in a series colloquially known as the “Ramona series,” comprised of eight books that revolve around the family and friends of Ramona Quimby, a spunky young girl navigating the ups and downs of being a kid in school and with her family. Beverly Cleary is a celebrated author of many children’s, middle-grade, and... Read Ramona the Pest Summary


Publication year 2004Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: The PastTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

The Red Kayak is a coming-of-age story set near the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland. Thirteen-year-old Braden Parks ("Brady") lives along the Corsica River with his mother and father and makes his living fishing for crabs and repairing boats. The town where the novel primarily takes place—Bailey's Wharf—is undergoing major changes as the story begins; historically home mostly to working-class families like the Parks, the town is now attracting wealthier residents like the Parks' new neighbors... Read Red Kayak Summary


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Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Music, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature

Refugee is a historical, young adult fiction novel by Alan Gratz. First published in 2017, Refugee became a New York Times bestseller.Plot SummaryThe novel follows the stories of three refugee children in three different geographic locations and points in time. Each child experiences traumatic losses and personal victories as they struggle to escape the political instability of their homelands. Josef Landau is fleeing Nazi Germany in 1939. Isabel Fernandez is escaping Castro’s Cuba in 1994... Read Refugee Summary


Publication year 2001Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Society: War, Relationships: FamilyTags Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Children's Literature, Immigration / Refugee