Recently I gave a list of children’s books I read repeatedly as a child, and still like to give as suggestions to children looking for something new to read. Here is a continuation of that list. Like last time, feel free to share your own favorite childhood books in the comments!
Eleven by Lauren Myracle
I got my copy of Eleven in a Barnes & Noble summer reading challenge. Each chapter of Eleven focuses on a distinct event from each month of the year. The stories were funny and frequently reminded me of my own experiences. Myracle puts in a lot of effort to ensure even the smallest details are vivid and memorable. The series in general (especially follow-up books Twelve and Thirteen) is a great, relatable example of tween fiction.
School Story by Andrew Clements
As a child, I longed to become an author. In this book, I saw that dream become a possibility. Natalie, with her best friend Zoe and a teacher at her elementary school, schemes to get her book published, using her unknowing mother as the official editor. The plan works far too smoothly to be believable, but my inner writer loved the book all the same. Though this is my favorite Andrew Clements book, there are plenty more by this author that I love almost as much: A Week in the Woods, Frindle, The Landry News, Report Card and more. In elementary school, Andrew Clements was the name I always gave when someone asked me who my favorite author was.
Runaway by Wendelin van Draanen
In my last throwback post I mentioned the Sammy Keyes series; this book is a prequel standalone to Sammy Keyes and the Sisters of Mercy, book #3 of that series. This provides background on my favorite side character of the series. Holly is a tween moved from bad foster home to bad foster home. She decides she’s had enough of the experience, and goes on the run. The book brings you right up to her first run-in with Sammy Keyes.
The Egypt Game by Zilpha Keatley Snyder
Between this book and the 2nd grade history curriculum that focused mostly on Ancient Egypt, my elementary school self was obsessed with Egyptian culture. I frequently imagined games like the ones April and Melanie and their friends invented. What child doesn’t hope for a secret location to imagine the world away with their friends? Even with the eerie, uhh, twist at the end, I enjoyed this book enough to read it over and over again.