Great Middle Grade Reads discussion

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message 1: by S.W. (new)

S.W. (swlothian) | 843 comments Mod
As the very first discussion for this group which (as I type) has no members, I thought it would be a nice start to see what your favourite Middle Grade book/s are.


message 2: by S.W. (new)

S.W. (swlothian) | 843 comments Mod
My fav MG books are ......

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Harry Potter, #1) by J.K. Rowling Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Harry Potter, #2) by J.K. Rowling Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter, #3) by J.K. Rowling Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Harry Potter, #4) by J.K. Rowling Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Harry Potter, #5) by J.K. Rowling Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Harry Potter, #6) by J.K. Rowling Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter, #7) by J.K. Rowling

This series really captured me, I love the writing, I love the characters, I love the settings.


message 3: by Lexie (new)

Lexie Conyngham | 21 comments Hi,

What about Philip Pullman? The Golden Compass series is good, but I think the Victorian thriller series which begins with Ruby in the Smoke is better - it keeps its character and over-arching plot more consistently throughout, though it's less controversial and deals less with 'big themes'.


message 4: by Lexie (new)

Lexie Conyngham | 21 comments And (checking the relevant bookshelf in the house) I'm looking forward to reading Cornelia Funke's series 'Inkheart' (not in the original German, I regret to say) - loved the film and was delighted to find three large books had been condensed into it, so there's lots more to discover!


message 5: by S.W. (new)

S.W. (swlothian) | 843 comments Mod
Lexie, Firstly..... Thanks for joining the group ..... It was born today.
I have often meant to read Inkheart but it slipped my memory. Thanks for reminding me, I've shelved it to-read.
Inkheart (Inkheart, #1) by Cornelia Funke


message 6: by Darren (new)

Darren Perman (darrenperman) | 1 comments Both my kids have enjoyed the Harry Potter series. In fact my 12 year old daughter is re-reading them again!


message 7: by Sandra (new)

Sandra Stiles (skstiles612) There are so many great one s out there. Some of my favorites and the favorites of my students have been Secret Saturdays by Torrey Maldonado, The Skeleton Creek Series by Patrick Carman, The Dreamhouse Kings Series by Robert Liparulo, Anything by Mary Downing Hahn.


message 8: by S.W. (new)

S.W. (swlothian) | 843 comments Mod
Darren wrote: "Both my kids have enjoyed the Harry Potter series. In fact my 12 year old daughter is re-reading them again!"

I'm thinking of a re-read too.


message 9: by S.W. (new)

S.W. (swlothian) | 843 comments Mod
Sandra wrote: "There are so many great one s out there. Some of my favorites and the favorites of my students have been Secret Saturdays by Torrey Maldonado, The Skeleton Creek Series by Patrick Carman, The Drea..."
Thanks for the tip...... I've shelved
Skeleton Creek (Skeleton Creek, #1) by Patrick Carman to-read


message 10: by Darby (new)

Darby Karchut Hi everyone! *waves* Just joined the group. Gosh, I have to say my favorite MG books are currently The Ranger's Apprentice series by John Flanagan. But I also love the Prydain series by Lloyd Alexander. If I think of more, I'll post them. Thanks, S.W., for starting a group for middle grade. Great idea!


message 11: by Sandra (new)

Sandra Stiles (skstiles612) S.W. wrote: "Darren wrote: "Both my kids have enjoyed the Harry Potter series. In fact my 12 year old daughter is re-reading them again!"

I'm thinking of a re-read too."


I have the entire series on my shelves at school and have yet to read them. I've had so many books to read and review I've not gotten to them. That is my goal for this next year.


message 12: by S.W. (new)

S.W. (swlothian) | 843 comments Mod
Darby wrote: "Hi everyone! *waves* Just joined the group. Gosh, I have to say my favorite MG books are currently The Ranger's Apprentice series by John Flanagan. But I also love the Prydain series by Lloyd Alexa..."

Thanks Darby. Welcome. The group is only days old, so hopefully it will grow and flourish.
Are the Ranger's Apprentice books separate stories, or are they an ongoing plot?


message 13: by S.W. (new)

S.W. (swlothian) | 843 comments Mod
Sandra wrote: "S.W. wrote: "Darren wrote: "Both my kids have enjoyed the Harry Potter series. In fact my 12 year old daughter is re-reading them again!"

I'm thinking of a re-read too."

I have the entire series ..."


Sandra...try not to get them lost on your shelf, they are really are a great read. :)


message 14: by Sandra (new)

Sandra Stiles (skstiles612) My classroom library is very well organized. I know exactly where they are and have already made note in my calendar for the first week of school. If I finish my books at home first, which I doubt I can always check them out from my local library.


message 15: by Darby (new)

Darby Karchut S.W. wrote: "Darby wrote: "Hi everyone! *waves* Just joined the group. Gosh, I have to say my favorite MG books are currently The Ranger's Apprentice series by John Flanagan. But I also love the Prydain series ..."

The Ranger's Apprentice is a 10 book series following the adventures of Will and his mentor, Halt.


message 16: by Leslie (new)

Leslie Bulion Darby wrote: "Hi everyone! *waves* Just joined the group. Gosh, I have to say my favorite MG books are currently The Ranger's Apprentice series by John Flanagan. But I also love the Prydain series by Lloyd Alexa..."
Hello! I also love the Prydain series--I fell in love with fantasy reading those books as a kid! I just read Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. Wonderful!!


message 17: by Darby (new)

Darby Karchut Leslie wrote: "Darby wrote: "Hi everyone! *waves* Just joined the group. Gosh, I have to say my favorite MG books are currently The Ranger's Apprentice series by John Flanagan. But I also love the Prydain series ..."

The Prydain series is great, isn't it. (Gwydion was my favorite character). And I read Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children earlier this year. Great concept, but the story was a little flat.


message 18: by Lynda (new)

Lynda Wilcox (lyndawrites) | 10 comments Not heard of most of these - except for His Dark Materials and Harry Potter, natch ;>) They may not be available in Britain.

My all-time favourite is Tom's Midnight Garden by Phillipa Pearce. It's quit oldnow, but not. I think, out of print. Also Aquila by Andrew Norris is a good one, though the sequel didn't quite live up to the first.


message 19: by Lexie (new)

Lexie Conyngham | 21 comments Lynda wrote: "Not heard of most of these - except for His Dark Materials and Harry Potter, natch ;>) They may not be available in Britain.

My all-time favourite is Tom's Midnight Garden by Phillipa Pearce. It's..."


Tom's Midnight Garden - wonderful book! Must reread it.


message 20: by Gail (new)

Gail Shepherd | 1 comments Breadcrumbs, Holes, When You Reach Me, the Penderwicks, Dead End in Norvelt, Skellig, The Kneebone Boy, The Higher Power of Lucky, Freak the Mighty, How to Survive Middle School -- Just to name a few really, really good ones that aren't so well known as the biggies like Harry. Support these talented Middle Grade authors -- we need to keep them writing!


message 21: by Sandra (new)

Sandra Stiles (skstiles612) I loved Dead End in Norvelt, Kneebone Boy, and I have the book Breadcrumbs here to read this summer ( I hope ). There are definitely too many good ones to list here.


message 22: by Laurisa (new)

Laurisa Reyes (lwreyes) | 18 comments I read Inkheart but haven't read the 2 sequels yet. They've been on my TBR list for way too long.

Lexie wrote: "And (checking the relevant bookshelf in the house) I'm looking forward to reading Cornelia Funke's series 'Inkheart' (not in the original German, I regret to say) - loved the film and was delighted..."


message 23: by Laurisa (new)

Laurisa Reyes (lwreyes) | 18 comments I keep hearing good things about Breadcrumbs and The Penderwicks.

Gail wrote: "Breadcrumbs, Holes, When You Reach Me, the Penderwicks, Dead End in Norvelt, Skellig, The Kneebone Boy, The Higher Power of Lucky, Freak the Mighty, How to Survive Middle School -- Just to name a f..."


message 24: by Sandra (new)

Sandra Stiles (skstiles612) I have already written several down. Check out "The Wind of LIfe Series" and "Chantel's Quest" series by Oliver Neubert.


message 25: by Kelly (new)

Kelly | 1 comments hi my kids have just finished The lion the witch and the wardrobe, but my 10 year old daughter's favourite author at the mo is Jaqualine Wilson , she's just finished The worry website.


message 26: by S.W. (new)

S.W. (swlothian) | 843 comments Mod
Kelly wrote: "hi my kids have just finished The lion the witch and the wardrobe, but my 10 year old daughter's favourite author at the mo is Jaqualine Wilson , she's just finished The worry website."

I enjoyed Narnia as well Kelly.
So many good books to read ... the hard part is finding the time to read them all.


message 27: by Lynda (new)

Lynda Wilcox (lyndawrites) | 10 comments This thread has got me thinking of the one book I loved and that probably lies behind - and influences - my own writing of fantasy for children: The Faraway Tree by Enid Blyton. It is the one book of my exteme youth that I dare not return to. I've re-read books like The Secret Garden and What Katy Did but I'm scared of doing the same with The Faraway Tree for fear that it ian't as good as I remember and, without the eyes of a child, will lose its magic.
Does anyone else do this with one, special, book?


message 28: by S.W. (new)

S.W. (swlothian) | 843 comments Mod
Lynda, my wife has fond memories of this Enid Blyton series from her childhood. I hunted high and low for it one year as a birthday present. I'm not sure she has read it yet - maybe she has the same fear as you.


message 29: by Darby (new)

Darby Karchut Lynda wrote: "This thread has got me thinking of the one book I loved and that probably lies behind - and influences - my own writing of fantasy for children: The Faraway Tree by Enid Blyton. It is the one book ..."

Weird. I felt the same way about some of my favorite "horse-y" books (Green Grass of Wyoming, etc), but when I re-read them, yup, the same magic was not only there, but a new magic emerged. Go for it!


message 30: by Angela (new)

Angela Larsen (anglarsen) | 3 comments What a great group! I'd love to know what middle grade books you all recommend that have strong female protags. In August, a group of middle grade girls are reviewing nominations and choosing the first annual "Strong Girls x Good Books" award. Would love your recommendations :-) Thanks!


message 31: by Lynda (new)

Lynda Wilcox (lyndawrites) | 10 comments Angela, hi. I set up a website for MG books - www.kindle-for-kids.com - and you might like to post this to our FB page -https://www.facebook.com/KindleForKids.

Sadly, the hero of my own book is male, so doesn't fulfill your criteria. I hope you find something your girls can enjoy.

Best wishes
Lynda


message 32: by Kaal (new)

Kaal Kaczmarek (kaalkaczmarekwriter) | 6 comments Hi Angela -my book has three strong (in their own unique way) female characters. The daughter Sophie is, for example "a tough kind of soft" -the captain of the boy's rugby team but with a fondness for pink.
I think the characters would make focal points for discussion about female roles and pressure in the modern world.
Hope you can have a squiz

Cousin Felicity and the Eels of Misty Point

Best wishes,

Kaal


message 33: by Serena (new)

Serena Schreiber (serena_schreiber) S.W. wrote: "Lexie, Firstly..... Thanks for joining the group ..... It was born today.
I have often meant to read Inkheart but it slipped my memory. Thanks for reminding me, I've shelved it to-read.
[bookcover:..."


Now reading Inkheart... in between my other books I'm reading.


message 34: by Serena (last edited Jul 09, 2012 07:42PM) (new)

Serena Schreiber (serena_schreiber) Angela wrote: "What a great group! I'd love to know what middle grade books you all recommend that have strong female protags. In August, a group of middle grade girls are reviewing nominations and choosing the f..."

What a fab idea! I don't have a book to recommend, but before I started writing, I lamented this fact about media in general. I look forward to hearing what you come up with for my daughter.


message 35: by S.W. (new)

S.W. (swlothian) | 843 comments Mod
Serena wrote: "S.W. wrote: "Lexie, Firstly..... Thanks for joining the group ..... It was born today.
I have often meant to read Inkheart but it slipped my memory. Thanks for reminding me, I've shelved it to-read..."


Let us know what you think. I may need to move it up my list (or stop sleeping so I can have the time to read them faster)


message 36: by Serena (new)

Serena Schreiber (serena_schreiber) Lynda wrote: "Not heard of most of these - except for His Dark Materials and Harry Potter, natch ;>) They may not be available in Britain.

My all-time favourite is Tom's Midnight Garden by Phillipa Pearce. It's..."


AbeBooks.com for all your hard-to-finds!


message 37: by Cordelia (new)

Cordelia Dinsmore (cordeliadinsmore) | 105 comments For a strong female protag, I like Peaceweaver, by Rebecca um, I forget her last name. The characters are a bit older, but the writing is strictly MG. And for a fabulous read, try Okay for Now by Gary Schmidt. Not a female protag, but there's a great little gal in it that is spunky.


message 38: by L.S. (new)

L.S. Hullinger | 26 comments Angela wrote: "What a great group! I'd love to know what middle grade books you all recommend that have strong female protags. In August, a group of middle grade girls are reviewing nominations and choosing the f..."
Hi Angela,
Before I wrote my two middle grade books (Cydni Hazard and Alibi’s Ghosts—each with female protagonists) I read as many of them as I could find. Some of my favorites were: Waiting For Normal, Here Today, Deep Down Popular, A Corner of the Universe, My One Hundred Adventures, Belle Teal, and Walk Two Moons. Hope this helps : )


message 39: by Serena (new)

Serena Schreiber (serena_schreiber) S.W. wrote: "Lynda, my wife has fond memories of this Enid Blyton series from her childhood. I hunted high and low for it one year as a birthday present. I'm not sure she has read it yet - maybe she has the sam..."

Do you pronounce it Ee-nid or Ay-nid - just had difference of opinions with my nine-year-old daughter! Thanks for any feedback.


message 40: by S.W. (new)

S.W. (swlothian) | 843 comments Mod
LOL......I've always known it as Ee-nid .... I'm Aussie though, so I don't know if that's the same in other countries.


message 41: by Scott (new)

Scott Clements (scottclements) | 43 comments I think these fall into the "middle grade" category, and what a GREAT series!!! I listened to them all on audio book, and the narrator Jim Dale is incredible (he did all the Harry Potters too). If you haven't had a chance to check out this series, you really missing some great reads.

Peter and the Starcatchers (Peter and the Starcatchers, #1) by Dave Barry Peter and the Starcatchers
Peter and the Shadow Thieves (Peter and the Starcatchers, #2) by Dave Barry Peter and the Shadow Thieves

Peter and the Secret of Rundoon

Peter and the Sword of Mercy

And the newest addition, which is such a clever way to continue the series in a whole new light:
The Bridge to Never Land


message 42: by Becca (new)

Becca (beccatheawesomeone) | 2 comments I really liked the Royal Diary series in the Middle Grades. Some of my faves are:
Victoria May Blossom of Britannia, England, 1829 (The Royal Diaries) by Anna Kirwan

Cleopatra VII Daughter of the Nile, 57 B.C. (The Royal Diaries) by Kristiana Gregory

Elizabeth I Red Rose of the House of Tudor, England, 1544 (The Royal Diaries) by Kathryn Lasky


message 43: by Lynda (new)

Lynda Wilcox (lyndawrites) | 10 comments Serena - It's pronounced Ee-nid - at least it is here in England where Enid Blyton was from.


message 44: by Patricia (new)

Patricia Puddle (trishapuddle) | 4 comments I loved Roald Dahl:
Matilda by Roald Dahl Roald Dahl 3 pack (George's Marvelous Medicine; The Twits; The BFG) by Roald Dahl The Witches by Roald Dahl The Twits by Roald Dahl

Also:
Junie B. Jones Boxed Set (Junie B. Jones, #1-3, #5) by Barbara Park
Junie B., First Grader Dumb Bunny (Junie B. Jones, #27) by Barbara Park Junie B., First Grader One-Man Band (Junie B. Jones, #22) by Barbara Park

And:

The Ramona Collection, Vol. 1 Ramona the Brave / Ramona the Pest / Beezus and Ramona / Ramona Quimby, Age 8 (#1-3,8) by Beverly Cleary Ramona the Pest (Ramona, #2) by Beverly Cleary

Also:

Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo


message 45: by Marlene (new)

Marlene | 2 comments My favorite middle grade right now is the Lightning Thief series. Great characters, both male and female, and lots of action to keep the story rolling. My students love to read too!


message 46: by Kristen (new)

Kristen | 2 comments My favorites growing up were Lloyd Alexander, Madeline L'Engle, Edward Eager, Clifford Hicks, Lousia May Alcott, Sylvia Louise Engdahl, Zilpha K. Snyder, E.L. Kongisburg, Erich Kastner, Alexander Key, Heinlein (he wrote some juvenile novels, too)and Juster's the Phantom Tollbooth. I also loved Natalie Babbitt.

I love Harry Potter and am looking for other modern middle grade books to read.


message 47: by S.W. (last edited Jul 23, 2012 07:28PM) (new)

S.W. (swlothian) | 843 comments Mod
Marlene wrote: "My favorite middle grade right now is the Lightning Thief series. Great characters, both male and female, and lots of action to keep the story rolling. My students love to read too!"

Hi Marlene, I'm about 80% through Titan's Curse and enjoying it. I've read Sea of Monsters, but didn't read Lightning Thief (as I had seen the movie). I'll be posting a review of Titan's Curse soon. Have you read them all?


message 48: by Serena (new)

Serena Schreiber (serena_schreiber) Lynda wrote: "Serena - It's pronounced Ee-nid - at least it is here in England where Enid Blyton was from."

LOL My daughter will insist Americans say Ay-nid. Thanks for the clarification!


message 49: by S.W. (new)

S.W. (swlothian) | 843 comments Mod
Kristen wrote: "My favorites growing up were Lloyd Alexander, Madeline L'Engle, Edward Eager, Clifford Hicks, Lousia May Alcott, Sylvia Louise Engdahl, Zilpha K. Snyder, E.L. Kongisburg, Erich Kastner, Alexander K..."


Hi Kristen, That's quite a list. I'm a huge HP fan too and have visited JKR's hometown Edinburgh and the Elephant Cafe itself, where she wrote alot of HP, to try to channel some of the JKR magic. I'm thinking of re-reading the series.


message 50: by Liam (last edited Jul 24, 2012 06:05AM) (new)

Liam O'Donnell (liamodonnell) | 5 comments Lots of great titles mentioned here! Here are a few of my favourites that I don't think have been mentioned. They're from some fellow Canadian writers who deserve success far and wide.

I'm a big fan of Kenneth Oppel's stuff:

Silverwing (Silverwing, #1) by Kenneth Oppel
Silverwing and the rest of the series - amazing MG adventure that asks big questions.

Airborn (Matt Cruse, #1) by Kenneth Oppel
The first in another great series - ideal for readers moving on from MG to YA or beyond.

Arthur Slade is another go-to-guy for great MG fiction:
The Hunchback Assignments (The Hunchback Assignments, #1) by Arthur Slade
The Hunchback Assignments Series rocks!

And finally L.M. Falcone is great for spooky stories that will have readers splitting a gut (and running from zombies.)

Walking With The Dead by L.M. Falcone

Looking forward to finding more great MG reads in this group!


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