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What Else Are You Reading? > Scifi/Fantasy book suggestions for children

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message 1: by John (new)

John | 35 comments Does anyone remember Magic Kingdom for Sale/Sold by Terry Brooks? I remember loving it when I was young but don't know if its too mature for my 8 yr old, who devours books but can get a bit spooked if a book is a little too suspensful or scary.


message 2: by Michael (new)

Michael Dunphy | 7 comments Have you tried the Deltora series? I don't remember how old I was when I read them, but they're pretty good fantasy books for kids.


message 3: by A.E. (last edited Jul 28, 2012 09:28AM) (new)

A.E. Marling (AEMarling) | 49 comments Harry Potter. The Hobbit. Dealing with Dragons.

My work here is done. (Swirls cape behind him.)


message 5: by Sandi (new)

Sandi (Sandikal) | 1192 comments John wrote: "Does anyone remember Magic Kingdom for Sale/Sold by Terry Brooks? I remember loving it when I was young but don't know if its too mature for my 8 yr old, who devours books but can get a bit spooked..."

I don't remember any adult situations, but it might be a bit mature for an eight year old anyway. Is your child a boy or girl? Is he/she a really advanced reader? I'd go with Chronicles of Narnia or A Wrinkle in Time.


message 6: by Walter (new)

Walter Spence (WalterSpence) | 549 comments Another good fantasy series for a child old enough to both understand and appreciate Lloyd Alexander and C.S. Lewis would be Susan Cooper's The Dark Is Rising Sequence.


message 7: by Phil (new)

Phil | 598 comments I enjoyed the Gamage Cup by Carol Kendal at the age. The Hobbit would be good too.


message 8: by John (new)

John | 35 comments Thanks all for the great suggestions! He is definitely an advanced reader, but isn't the bravest soul. The bravest he's been was reading the entire 12 book Avalon series in 9 days! I will check out all that you folks have suggested.


message 9: by kvon (new)

kvon | 554 comments How about Bruce Coville? I loved (as an adult) his Magic Shop books, starting with Jennifer Murdley's Toad.

FYI, you can check out the Golden Duck awards for children's sf.


message 10: by Paul (new)

Paul  Perry (Pezski) | 401 comments Some great suggestions. I will third the Prydain books. I'd also add Diana Wynn Jones, especially her Chrestomanci books.

For SF, I devoured the old SF when I was a kid, especially Isaac Asimov and Brian Aldiss. I'd also add John Christopher - the Tripods trilogy, the Prince in Waiting trilogy, and any others.


message 11: by Brian (last edited Jul 30, 2012 06:58AM) (new)

Brian (AussieCavalier) | 9 comments My 9yo niece is just starting 'The Belgariad' series by David Eddings, and is loving it so far.


message 12: by Alterjess (new)

Alterjess | 318 comments I'm reading The Wonderful Flight to the Mushroom Planet with my 5 year-old now. I think it's about the right level for an 8-9 year-old to read to themselves.

I was more into fantasy than SF at that age, but for the life of me I can't pull any specific titles out of my head! Other than The Hobbit, of course.


message 13: by Paul (new)

Paul Harmon (TheSaint08D) | 639 comments Enders Game...My 11 year old just read it and loved it...even sold in YA section but still solid Sci-fi


message 14: by John (new)

John | 35 comments Wow! So many of these suggestions I've never heard of! I have a lot of work cut out for me! Thanks again!


message 15: by Nick (new)

Nick Hershberger | 5 comments I loved the Lucky Starr books by Asimov. Don't recall exactly how old I was but I do remember getting them from the library in elementary school. Brian Jaques also wrote some great adventure/fantasy books; Redwall, Mattimeo, Martin the Warrior, etc.


message 16: by Jessica (new)

Jessica (JessyanElfatheart) | 34 comments The Neverending Story was my favorite as a kid and I still love it.


message 17: by Paul (new)

Paul | 46 comments I second the Redwall books and the Narnia books. They are the ones that really got me into reading fantasy books on my own. David Eddings is also a good choice but might be a bit advanced maybe. I would also suggest the Earthsea books by Ursula le Guin. Although i seem to remember the first one being a bit scary (but in a good way) when i was quite young.


message 18: by Jane (new)

Jane Higginson | 160 comments We got to read The Lion the witch and the wardrobe in class at school and it made me want to read the rest of the narnia books which I did so these are definite must for s+l kids, also the choose your own adventure stories I would say fit in also I loved these books they tickled my imagination placing me in different situations and different eras.
On the sci-fi front there are the Junior Jedi Knight books and also the Jedi apprentice series.


message 19: by Mary (new)

Mary (ValentineW) | 118 comments My three go to started fantasy novels/series are the Prydain books, the Dark Is Rising series, & the Chronicles of Narnia, all of which have been mentioned previously. I bought my first copy of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe when I was 9 years old. I still own it, & loaned it to my friend's 9-year-old daughter to read before I took her to the movie.

Speaking of movies, please do NOT watch the movies based on Lloyd Alexander's & Susan Cooper's books! Justice was NOT done!


message 20: by Pickle (new)

Pickle | 189 comments id recommend the trilogy of books by James P Blaylock starting with The Elfin Ship, a nice easy intro to fantasy.


message 21: by Katie (new)

Katie | 14 comments Definitely The Chronicles of Narnia, The Farthest-Away Mountain, and Dealing with Dragons were my absolute favorites as a child. I re-read them over and over!


message 22: by David (new)

David | 4 comments In addition to all the great books mentioned above, The Thief of Always is a book I have recommended to that age group that really goes over well. It's an extremely original story that really opens up a child's imagination. When my boys are a bit older I plan on reading this to them as this is one of my all time favorite books.


message 23: by A.J. (last edited Aug 09, 2012 08:28AM) (new)

A.J. (ajbobo) | 71 comments This thread is reminding me of all the great books I read as a kid. I started with The Hobbit, went on to Narnia and then read A Wrinkle in Time (has anyone mentioned that one yet?). I also remember a great book on Greek mythology that I was into when I was 9 or 10. I can't remember the name of it off the top of my head, but I was very excited when I found the exact same book on the shelf at my daughter's elementary school library.

Another series I enjoyed when I was a few years older was John Christopher's The Tripods series (The White Mountains, etc).


message 24: by John (new)

John | 35 comments David wrote: "In addition to all the great books mentioned above, The Thief of Always is a book I have recommended to that age group that really goes over well. It's an extremely original story that really opens..."
i am a huge Clive Barker fan but its been a long time since I've read his stuff. would not have considered any of it suitable for children so I'll have to revisit Thief of Always, thanks for the suggestion!


message 25: by John (new)

John | 35 comments Mary wrote: "My three go to started fantasy novels/series are the Prydain books, the Dark Is Rising series, & the Chronicles of Narnia, all of which have been mentioned previously. I bought my first copy of Th..."

Should I start him with "The Magician's Nephew"? Most people mention The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe so I wonder if it helps or hinders where to start the series. Thanks for the suggestions!


message 26: by Jonathan (new)

Jonathan (headspinningfromvagueness) John wrote: "Mary wrote: "My three go to started fantasy novels/series are the Prydain books, the Dark Is Rising series, & the Chronicles of Narnia, all of which have been mentioned previously. I bought my fir..."

I started on The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe and I think that starting there is probably one of the best starts. Then if he's interested he can go back and read The Magician's Nephew.

I second everything above and would add The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making which is a recent fairytale type story. Also The Ruins of Gorlan which is a sort of world building fantasy for children.


message 27: by Kathryn (new)

Kathryn Handel | 126 comments Paul wrote: "I second the Redwall books and the Narnia books. They are the ones that really got me into reading fantasy books on my own. David Eddings is also a good choice but might be a bit advanced maybe. I ..."

Redwall! I looooooved those as a kid and I've re-read them many times since first picking them up in a Borders.


message 28: by John (new)

John | 35 comments I can't wait to try out all of your suggestions!

I have a spinoff question for you: Do children like (or have the attention span for) audio books? We are taking a 12 hour each way driving trip soon and wondered if some of these suggestions would work as audio to help us all survive the drive! As a reminder he's 8 yrs old.


message 29: by Phil (new)

Phil | 598 comments My kids listened to an Overlander book on a similar trip and they really enjoyed it.


message 30: by Kevin (new)

Kevin Xu (kxu65) | 1075 comments John wrote: "I can't wait to try out all of your suggestions!

I have a spinoff question for you: Do children like (or have the attention span for) audio books? We are taking a 12 hour each way driving trip soo..."


I used to listen to audio all the time when I was a kid. I would get all different kinds of audio from the library for the week then spent the weekend listing to them.


message 31: by Seawood (new)

Seawood | 129 comments John wrote: "Does anyone remember Magic Kingdom for Sale/Sold by Terry Brooks? I remember loving it when I was young but don't know if its too mature for my 8 yr old, who devours books but can get a bit spooked..."

Oh!! Sorry, I'm a bit late to this thread. Yes, my original copy is upstairs waiting for my daughter right now :D I *loved* it, it was one of the books that really got me into fantasy - I remember going to get the Shannara books after reading it (wasn't that keen on those but it was a definite portal book for me and I swallowed the entire bookcase at the library after that. Think I was ten or so). I need to re-read it and work out if my girl's ready for it yet.


message 32: by Darren (new)

Darren Humphries (Darrenhf) | 96 comments As a child I loved Alan Garner's books Elidor, The Weirdstone of Brisingamen: A Tale of Alderley and The Moon of Gomrath: A Tale of Alderley. Great fantasy adventures, though they might be a little too dark in places.


message 33: by John (new)

John | 35 comments Caroline wrote: "John wrote: "Does anyone remember Magic Kingdom for Sale/Sold by Terry Brooks? I remember loving it when I was young but don't know if its too mature for my 8 yr old, who devours books but can get ..."

Thanks for the post! It's one of my first memories of fantasy too, and I remember loving it. I just got the Shannara trilogy as a gift for my birthday last year and it just didnt hold up to my memory of it 30+ years later, but its probably because I had just finished A Feast for Crows and G.R.R. martin's style is hard to follow up!


message 34: by Seawood (new)

Seawood | 129 comments True! I haven't read the Shannara books again. Oh, have you tried any Pratchett with your 8yo? We are (slowly) reading the Tiffany Aching books and she is loving the Wee Free Men.


message 35: by John (new)

John | 35 comments next week is a big test. We have a 24 hour round trip drive and I checked out most of everyones suggestions from the library so he's going to have plenty of time to try some out. I'll report back!


message 36: by P. Aaron (last edited Aug 14, 2012 10:55AM) (new)

P. Aaron Potter (PAaronPotter) | 585 comments My smalls (ages 5-12) just managed a 2,500 mile round trip drive up and down California and Oregon with not a single tantrum, thanks to the audio books of Brandon Sanderson's Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians and its three sequels. There is no higher recommendation.


message 37: by John (new)

John | 35 comments P. Aaron wrote: "My smalls (ages 5-12) just managed a 2,500 mile round trip drive up and down California and Oregon with not a single tantrum, thanks to the audio books of Brandon Sanderson's Alcatraz Versus the Ev..."

Thanks for the suggestion! I will give it a try.


message 38: by John (new)

John | 35 comments thought I would give an update on my sons choices after all of your great suggestions. I checked out almost all of your suggestions from the library for our vacation, and he ended up falling deeply into Harry Potter. He's on book 5 in less than two weeks. He snuck in the wonderful Flight to the Mushroom Planet between books and enjoyed it. Thanks again for all of your help!


message 39: by Tarl (new)

Tarl | 12 comments Nick wrote: "I loved the Lucky Starr books by Asimov.
The Lucky Starr books were some of my foundational scifi stories that opened the door to Asimov for me. Good for young readers, heroic stories.


message 40: by Edward (new)

Edward Brock Though very dark, one of my favorites is The Thief of Always. It is the first book I recommend for kids.


message 41: by Tarl (new)

Tarl | 12 comments Kids today are inquisitive. With all of the forensic shows surrounding us in this generation, people have learned to look deeper to the reasons why. We deconstruct everything.
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum is a great book for kids to read, but it leaves a lot of sub-plot threads hanging. There may be questions. If I may recommend my prequel to Baum's novel, The Witch Queens, it dives into an epic backstory of Baum's work and ties up the hanging plot threads. Adventure fantasy, suitable for all ages, with a dose of American history thrown in for context.


message 42: by Sabrina (new)

Sabrina Mcclure | 4 comments These are some great suggestions, but there are a lot great new books out in the children's fantasy genre, science fiction is still hard to come by. You still can't beat any of Rick Riordan (Percy Jackson or Kane Chronicles). Dragon Slippers is great, but it does have a female protagonist. For some fantasy that plays with fairy tales, try The Land of Stories: The Wishing Spell.

Be sure to check with your child's teacher-librarian or if your school lacks that specialty teacher, the public children's or youth librarian.


message 43: by Tamahome (new)

Tamahome | 4969 comments Anyone read Michael J. Sullivan?


message 44: by John (new)

John | 35 comments Sabrina wrote: "These are some great suggestions, but there are a lot great new books out in the children's fantasy genre, science fiction is still hard to come by. You still can't beat any of Rick Riordan (Percy ..."

The school librarian is a great suggestion! My son looks up to her but I never thought to chat with her about this.

Female protags are equally acceptable by him; he's been independently reading since 3 or 4 and was addicted to fairie books with female lead characters.

thanks for the suggestions!


message 45: by Noel (new)

Noel Baker | 364 comments Tamahome wrote: "Anyone read Michael J. Sullivan?"

Yes, and I cannot recommend the Riryia series highly enough. Superb characters, terrific story which unfolds wonderfully and has a hugely satisfying ending.
If you thought you were falling out of love with the Fantasy genre, these books will refresh that romance.


message 46: by Tamahome (new)

Tamahome | 4969 comments He told his publishing story on functional nerds. It was very interesting. http://functionalnerds.com/2012/08/ep...


message 47: by Janet (new)

Janet | 51 comments When I was near that age, I absolutely loved the Brian Jacques Redwall series. My school librarian and another teacher took me to meet him when I was 10 and it was one of the most memorable childhood experiences I had.


message 48: by John (new)

John | 35 comments A.E. wrote: "Harry Potter. The Hobbit. Dealing with Dragons.

My work here is done. (Swirls cape behind him.)"


OK, since I started this thread, my son has read the entire Harry Potter series, and just this week finished The Hobbit! He wants to try the Lord of the Rings, but do you think 8 yrs old is old enough? I've never read it, but I assumed it was more mature than the Hobbit.


message 49: by Carrie (new)

Carrie (cstienen) | 4 comments You should try a collection of Hans Christian Andersen's fairytales. The writing style is very similar to J.R.R. Tolkien's


message 50: by Alex (new)

Alex Ristea (alexristea) | 654 comments Redwall for sure.

Many a late night was spent with those books as a kid...


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Books mentioned in this topic

The First Chronicles Of Prydain (other topics)
The Dark is Rising Sequence (other topics)
Jennifer Murdley's Toad (other topics)
The Wonderful Flight to the Mushroom Planet (other topics)
The Neverending Story (other topics)
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Authors mentioned in this topic

Isaac Asimov (other topics)
Brian W. Aldiss (other topics)
John Christopher (other topics)
David Eddings (other topics)
L. Frank Baum (other topics)
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