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Thursday, November 29, 2012

Book Recs: Middle Grade

Christmas is just around the corner and so is that period of trying to figure out what to buy for everyone. Here are some ideas of great middle grade books and why I love them so much.

Wild Magic by Tamora Pierce
No list of mine discussing middle grade books would be complete with Tamora Pierce.  I've been reading this one at least once a year since fifth grade and I've never gotten tired of it. WM is the first book in the Immortals quartet. It's a great story with strong female and male characters, wild fantasy creatures, and a touch of romance later in the series.

Alanna: The First Adventure by Tamora Pierce
This is the first book in the Song of the Lioness quartet. It's another amazing story with strong female and male characters, surprising twists, and a bit more romance than Immortals.

So You Want to Be a Wizard by Diane Duane
I got into this series in middle school and just recently discovered it again. It hasn't lost any of its magic over the years. This is the first book in the eight-book series. I recommend it for a upper middle grade readers simply because each installment is rather long. It's the story of a girl who discovers a book in a library So You Want to be a Wizard and takes the Oath to become a wizard, expecting nothing of it. The series is one of magic, great characters, and being strong in the face of adversity.

The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan
This is the first book in the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series. This series is five books long, all of them fantastic. There is also a companion series Heroes of Olympus, also five books long, but only three of them are out so far. The series centers on Percy Jackson who, after many years of bizarre accidents resulting in him getting kicked out of school-after-school, discovers that he's the son of a Greek god and is taken to Camp Half-Blood where demigods are trained to fight.

The Giver by Lois Lowry
I read this book way back in seventh grade and I still look on it fondly. It's one of the few school-assigned classics that I can honestly say I loved when I read it in class.  In Jonas's world everything is assigned: jobs, houses, even spouses. When Jonas receives his occupation, he gets a shock: he has been chosen to be the Giver, the one to hold all the memories of things outside of their world, to see beyond. There are three sequels, one of which just came out very recently.

The Red Pyramid by Rick Riordan
This is the first book in the Kane Chronicles trilogy. The story centers on Carter and Sadie whose father, a famed Egyptologist, unleashes the Egyptian god Set and forces them to embark on a dangerous journey. This trilogy, like Percy Jackson, centers on mythology but it's Egyptian instead of Greek.

What are your recommendations for great middle grade books? 

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