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Books for Middle Readers

Book List

Chasing Vermeer (Paperback)

$7.99
ISBN-13: 9780439372978
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scholastic Paperbacks, 5/2005

Are you good at noticing what goes on around you? Sometimes things seem to be unrelated and then suddenly, they make sense when you put them all together. Petra and Calder are those kinds of kids too. Imagine if you started putting things together and ended up in an international art scandal! "Theft at the Crooked Tree!" you might yell. Now imagine the FBI gets involved. Yikes! This is a great book about how observing the world around you can be very, very important.

Recommended by Jessilynn


The Wright 3 (Paperback)

$7.99
ISBN-13: 9780439693684
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Scholastic Paperbacks, 6/2007
Petra and Calder are brought together again. This time they are on a mission to save a house in their Chicago neighborhood that was built by Frank Lloyd Wright. Things start getting strange when they learn about how the house was built. I was worried when voices are heard in the empty house and moving shadows are seen behind the art-glass windows. All of my questions were eventually answered: Is the house haunted? Is it true that there is hidden treasure there? Who will risk his/her life to save the house? Recommended by Jessilynn

Perfect (Paperback)

$7.95
ISBN-13: 9781571316516
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Milkweed Editions, 9/2004
Perfect is a great read about a 13 year-old girl in an imperfect world. Charming and clearly written, with humor and drama, this is "perfect" for a mother/daughter book club. If you like this book, don't miss Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli. Recommended by Susan

The Time Hackers (Paperback)

$5.99
ISBN-13: 9780553487886
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Yearling, 8/2006
It's not often you open your locker and find a dead body, only to see it vanish 30 seconds later. But for seventh grader Dorso Clayman, it's another bizarre happening in a chain of practical jokes gone dangerously wrong. The ultimate pranksters have hacked into the time line, and now objects from the past are appearing in the present. If Dorso and his friend Frank can't break the hackers' code soon enough, they'll end up lost in the past themselves. Can they beat the hackers at their own game? The Time Hackers is a new kind of adventure from the king of adventure tales, Gary Paulsen. Recommended by Susan

$7.99
ISBN-13: 9780060577339
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Katherine Tegen Books, 3/2006
Maybe you can judge a book by its cover. Certainly the cover of Sage's first Septimus Heap book will capture your interest….a fun, mystery with rollicking characters. Heads up Harry, there's a new wizard in town! Recommended by Susan

$24.99
ISBN-13: 9780439813785
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Scholastic Press, 3/2007
Prepare to be swept away to the Paris train station in 1931, where 10 year old Hugo Cabret hides in a tiny apartment and keeps the many clocks running on time. The mystery of Hugo’s life is told through words and the most incredible illustrations that are reminiscent of a silent film. This is storytelling at its finest. My words will not do it justice...you'll have to peek inside. Recommended by Susan

So B. It (Paperback)

$6.99
ISBN-13: 9780064410472
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: HarperCollins, 10/2005
Twelve year-old Heidi's family is not typical. Her disabled mother's vocabulary consists of 23 words, and her wonderful neighbor, Bernadette, is afraid to leave the house. Heidi says she has "angora phobia." But Heidi has a lucky streak that leads her cross country in search of her past and meaning of a mysterious word "Soof." Fans of Because of Winn Dixie will adore this book. Recommended by Susan

Science Fair (Hardcover)

$18.99
ISBN-13: 9781423113249
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Disney Editions, 10/2008
From the pair that has delighted us with the Peter and the Starcatchers series, comes this uproarious (no kidding--I was in stitches in the first paragraph alone) novel about an evil dictator from "Kprshtskan (pronounced Krpshtskan)" who believes the best way to overthrow the American government is by selling encrypted software to the science-fair-cheating kids of Hubble Middle School. This year, however, Toby Harbinger is a student at Hubble, and is as honest as they come. But when he and his best friends are framed for crimes against the government, he must overcome countless obstacles to save his country, prove his innocence and, most challenging of all, subvert his Vice Principal (aka "The Armpit"). I haven't laughed this hard or been so tongue-tied in some time. Recommended by Katie

Frindle (Paperback)

$6.99
ISBN-13: 9780689818769
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2/1998
My favorite of all of Clements' books, Frindle is a rollicking good story of the power of language. While daydreaming in class, Nick begins to wonder how objects get their names - why is a pen a pen? This seemingly innocent question leads to a string of events in which the entire country can soon be heard murmuring the name "Frindle," and Nick finds himself responsible for changing the English word as he knows it! Recommended by Katie

$6.99
ISBN-13: 9780375822742
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Yearling, 5/2004
Reminiscent of Lois Lowry's The Giver, DuPrau's book brings us a world that was created as the last refuge for the human race. The city has survived for 200 years under the direction that each person is appointed to a fitting job. Lina is an underground worker; Doon is a messenger; it is only when they switch jobs that they discover a secret which leads them to a world that is not so extinct after all! Recommended by Katie

The Breadwinner (Paperback)

$8.95
ISBN-13: 9780888994165
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Groundwood Books, 10/2001
In the city of Kabul, Parvana abides with her family, ever watchful of the Taliban's ruling eye. But when Parvana's father is arrested for social reasons, the country's strict views regarding religion and women take on a whole new meaning for the young heroine. She must devise a plan to help her family survive, while remaining true to herself, in a time and place which demands otherwise. Recommended by Katie

The Whipping Boy (Paperback)

$5.99
ISBN-13: 9780060521226
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Greenwillow Books, 4/2003
Whenever Prince Brat misbehaves, however insignificantly, Jemmy receives the punishment. He is the young highness' Whipping Boy, a position Jemmy fears he will hold for the rest of his life. But when he and the Prince are captured by two theives who find out that one of the boys is royalty, they must come together if they wish to remain alive. Recommended by Katie

The Thief Lord (Paperback)

$7.99
ISBN-13: 9780545227704
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Chicken House, 5/2010
Along the watery streets of Venice the Thief Lord reigns supreme. Revered by his peers, the band of runaways to whom he teaches all there is to know of the art of thievery; feared by the citizens of Venice who must bar their doors at night lest they awake to find their riches have disappeared. But when two of the boys follow the Thief Lord on one of his many nightly escapades, they begin to uncover the true identity of their masked leader -- a truth that could spell disaster! Recommended by Katie

My Father's Dragon (Paperback)

$7.95
ISBN-13: 9780394890487
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Random House Books for Young Readers, 11/1987
When Elmer happens upon a stray cat who regales him with stories of the magical land of Wild Island, the unlikely duo stows away on a cargo ship bound for sea. Once the pair land on the island, they encounter a menagerie of dangerous creatures, all of whom hope to prevent Elmer from rescuing the captive dragon. Elmer must use the collection of odd items in his backpack to survive each encounter if he is to save the dragon and himself from certain doom! Recommended by Katie

$6.99
ISBN-13: 9780440415787
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Yearling, 5/2004
Hollis can't remember a time when she wasn't being passed from one foster family to another. Now she has been placed in the care of Josie, an elderly woman who is slowly losing her memory. It is now up to Hollis to keep Josie's illness a secret from Social Services, and with the caretaker roles now reversed, the young girl discovers that she may have found and nearly lost the perfect family. Recommended by Katie

Rapunzel's Revenge (Paperback)

$15.99
ISBN-13: 9781599902883
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Bloomsbury USA Childrens, 8/2008
It's been only a couple hundred years, but better late than never . . . the Hales have at last told the real tale of Rapunzel and her never-ending braids (used less to escape from towers and more as lassos). The illustrations alternate between exaggerated comical expressions and superhero posing -- both styles helping to illuminate this rollicking adventure of a sassy, rough-and-tumble maiden, out to help the downtrodden and punish the powerful. I haven't had this much fun in a long time! Recommended by Katie

$6.99
ISBN-13: 9780060002220
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: HarperCollins, 5/2007
Oh just admit it - everybody loves the perfect villain, and here he is! Learn how the young James Matthew grows to be one of the most notorious figures in literary history. From fatal duels at boarding school, to taking companions in the form of hairy spiders, to truly disgusting pranks with lemon custard, no other character will keep you gagging and laughing like the young Capt. Hook. Recommended by Katie

$6.99
ISBN-13: 9780385736619
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Yearling, 9/2008
An enduring and timeless tale of adventure in unexpected places (and a great before bedtime book). Plastic, Lumphy and Stingray think they are quite wordly, as they've listened closely to all that the Little Girl says of the "outside world." But when they venture out of the bedroom to find a birthday gift for her, the three friends soon discover that they have much to learn. Absolutely imaginative and heartwarming. Recommended by Katie

$15.99
ISBN-13: 9781599903064
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Bloomsbury USA Childrens, 10/2008
It's about time we saw some foodie writing for the young! Kingfisher's little gem of a story pokes fun at nasty Uncle Lard, like the best of Roald Dahl's works; it follows the spritely young heroine, Madeleine who is bestowed with an exceptional gift; and it brings us a curious culinary witch, complete with mysterious concoctions and a sly feline companion. There is so much fun to be had in these pages--at school, before bedtime and in the kitchen, mais oui! Recommended by Katie

$7.99
ISBN-13: 9780061231179
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: HarperCollins, 4/2008
Skulduggery Pleasant is the sort of guy that everyone would like to have on his or her side -- he's handy with throwing flames; he's got a sharp sense of humor that encourages witty replies; he wears a fedora and shades very well; and he's a wiz of a magician, detective and, oh yes, a skeleton. And for Stephanie Edgley, a young, ordinary girl from outside of Dublin, Skulduggery is the one person (once-person? thing?) who may just hold the secret to Stephanie's not-so-ordinary destiny. So if you like loads of suspense, a good bit of chills, and plenty of magic, take a nap, have a hearty meal and then pick up these books, because you won't stop to sleep or eat until you've reached the end! Recommended by Katie

$6.99
ISBN-13: 9780439388818
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Scholastic, 1/2004
The summer that Hattie turns 12 a visitor arrives. He has never been spoken of before, and even when Uncle Adam becomes a permanent member of the household, Hattie's parents refuse to recognize his disabilities. But Hattie, who has lived her whole life in the company of adults, finds the childhood friend she never believed she would have. As the two become ever closer, neither is prepared for what comes when summer ends. Recommended by Katie

Every Soul A Star (Paperback)

$7.00
ISBN-13: 9780316002578
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 9/2009
Have you ever felt that your head would explode while thinking too hard about outer space? Read this book! But beyond being totally astronomical, it is also the very down-to-earth story of three kids, each at a pivotal moment in their lives, who find themselves together, in the middle of nowhere, to see a once-in-a-lifetime solar eclipse. And only as they are forced together, and begin to contemplate the vastness of space, do they realize the significant role each of them has to play in the universe. Recommended by Katie

$6.99
ISBN-13: 9780142404157
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Puffin, 1/2006
A children's classic from one of the greatest storytellers of the past 60 years! Homer Price is the most unlikely hero one will ever encounter, but with the help of his pet skunk, the Sheriff and the boys, the Elixir of Life Compound and a dysfunctional donut machine, who knows just what's in store. The small town of Centerburg had better hold on to it's britches -- here comes Homer Price! Recommended by Katie

$19.95
ISBN-13: 9780399154782
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Putnam Adult, 3/2008
The summer of 2008 marked the centennial of L.M. Montgomery's debut novel featuring the orphaned "Anne-girl." I've only known Anne for a mere 15 of those 100 years, but no other character has since been such a "kindred spirit." This is a classic that no young girl should be without. Anne is the sort of friend that comes around only once in a lifetime, and the one who charming antics and generous heart will stay with you forever. Recommended by Katie

$12.99
ISBN-13: 9780670011384
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Viking Juvenile, 10/2008
"You bunch of Knuckleheads!" is a phrase Jon Scieszka and his five (yes, five!) brothers heard often while growing up in southeast Michigan in the 50s and 60s. Read on to discover his childhood stories of sword fighting in sewer discharge pipes, setting fire to army models, conning the young brothers into scooping dog poop, and explaining "gooberbutts" to the nuns at school. You just might find yourself exclaiming, "You bunch of Knuckleheads!" Recommended by Katie

$6.99
ISBN-13: 9780440495963
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Yearling, 2/1972
In elementary school I became thoroughly obsessed with the Salem Witch Trials after reading this book for a historical fiction unit. The author vividly relates the story of a young woman named Kit who journeys to the colonies to live with relatives. There she befriends a kindly hermit woman, ostracized by the prejudiced and fearful community and eventually accused of witchcraft. Now Kit must make the life-threatening decision to stand by her innocent friend and risk her own life, or abandon the only true companion she's ever known! Recommended by Katie

First Light (Paperback)

$6.99
ISBN-13: 9780440422228
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Yearling, 9/2008
When Peter's dad takes the family with him on his research trip to Greenland, to study global warming, Peter believes that it is with the intent of saving the planet. But when Peter's mom begins to have more frequent "episodes," and his own headaches play tricks with his vision, Peter discovers that there is another world that may need saving--one buried far below the surface of the glacial island. This book is a heart-pounding, arctic adventure, until the very last word! Recommended by Katie

Ballet Shoes (Paperback)

$6.99
ISBN-13: 9780679847595
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Yearling, 11/1993
One of my childhood favorites as well as the quintessential read for any young girl who has a love of dancing, acting and fulfilling her greatest dreams. Noel Streatfeild tells the story of the three Fossil sisters, orphaned while young, but with the good fortune to be gifted with talents to make names for themselves at an eminent ballet academy. And it's not until the pointe shoes are on, that the girls find a happiness that they feared they had lost forever. Recommended by Katie

The Disappeared (Hardcover)

$16.99
ISBN-13: 9780803732759
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Dial, 6/2008
Gloria Whelan never fails to amaze me; she has this unmatched ability to share stories of other cultures, often focusing on oppression or times of hardship. Yet, she is a master of making her young readers aware, without being verbose. The Disappeared is told through the voices of a boy taken from his family during Videla's regime in Argentina, and his sister who risks her family's trust, her values and her very life to bargain for her brother's release. This story reminds us that though "The Disappeared" are missing, they are never forgotten. Recommended by Katie

Homeless Bird (Paperback)

$5.99
ISBN-13: 9780064408196
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: HarperCollins, 9/2001
As is tradition, Koly is placed into an arranged marriage at the tender age of 13. She soon discovers that she was chosen not so much as a wife, but foremost as a caretaker for her dying husband. Faced with a future as an unwanted widow, Koly begins to stictch her story into an intricate quilt; and with every stitch made by her clever hands, Koly comes one step closer to rewriting her story, and finding peace within herself. Breathtakingly beautiful and inspiring. Recommended by Katie

$6.99
ISBN-13: 9780140345353
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Puffin, 10/1990
As another Passover Seder approaches, Hannah is not looking forward to more of her grandparents' stories of the Holocaust. But when she is transported back in time, she finds herself in one of those very concentration camps. Knowing what she does about the outcome of the Holocaust, Hannah must choose between revealing all and subsequently altering the course of history, or losing those she's befriended, before it's too late! Recommended by Katie