We love reading great books! Books can take you all over the world, teach you new things, and truly broaden your middle schooler’s horizons in a unique way. These days, Emily is reading more books independently, but there are still lots of great books we read aloud together too.
Finding age-appropriate books for middle schoolers can be tough! You’re looking for books that will be challenging enough to keep them moving forward with reading but still a lot of fun to read independently. Books that are complex and compelling, but still appropriate for these in-between years.
Ready to see what made the cut for our middle school bookshelves? Get the scoop on the ultimate booklist for your homeschool through the middle school years. Plus, discover more fun resources for homeschooling middle school including interest-led unit studies and literature-based activities we love.
Finding Age-Appropriate Books For Middle Schoolers
Finding the right books for middle schoolers can be challenging. Searching for compelling and age-appropriate books for middle school-aged homeschoolers is sometimes difficult.
If you’re searching for books that will help your middle schoolers continue developing their reading skills, entertain them, and pique their curiosity, you won’t want to miss my ultimate middle school booklist for homeschoolers. These books are titles that Emily loves! There are even some great books tried and tested by veteran homeschool moms.
The Ultimate Middle School Booklist For Your Homeschool
Ready to discover what we’re reading in middle school? Don’t miss the ultimate middle school booklist for your homeschool. These are the perfect books to gift middle schoolers for a birthday or grab for your own bookshelves.
I’d like to start by sharing some of our favorite book series. These books are great for helping your middle schooler fall in love with reading. We love that the story keeps going, drawing us into a whole new world with characters we don’t have to say goodbye to after just one book.
The Accidental Apprentice
A boy and a magical beast begin an adventure in the mysterious woods in The Wildlore series, a New York Times bestseller that’s perfect for middle schoolers who love fantasy. If your kids were fans of How To Train Your Dragon, you won’t want to miss this.
The Serpent’s Secret
If your middle schoolers love Rick Riordan and the Percy Jackson series, they’ll love this new series from author Sayantani Das Gupta. The first book, The Serpent’s Secret introduces us to a middle-grade girl who doubles as an interdimensional demon slayer in a thrilling fantasy world.
Chronicles of Never After
The Chronicles of Never After by the author of Descendants, Melissa de la Cruz, are fascinating! In the books, the main character Filomena must contend with beautiful princesses, evil fairies, and sorcerers as she works to find the truth behind the fairy tales and set the world back to rights.
Cilla Lee Jenkins
The Cilla Lee Jenkins book series is all about a girl on a mission to become a best-selling author. Along the way she shares relatable stories about begin biracial, getting a new sibling, and more. These books are filled with laughter so it’s easy for middle schoolers to get sucked in and want to read more.
Gary Paulson’s Hatchet is a Newberry Award-winning book and a classic middle school read. This novel about a boy surviving in the wilderness is certain to spark your child’s sense of curiosity and imagination. Plus, it’s the first of 5 awesome books for your middle schoolers to explore this year!
Ali Cross Series
James Patterson’s Alex Cross series is wildly popular with adults. In his new Ali Cross series, he’s appealing to middle schoolers with three thrilling novel mysteries featuring challenging crimes and clues the reader can follow as they read.
The City of Ember
The City of Ember book series has sold more than 3.5 million copies and it’s easy to see why! This amazing journey will have your middle schoolers on the edge of their seats as they stay up late to finish all four adventures and escape the dark.
Murder is Bad Manners
Fall in love with a modern-day Sherlock Holmes style mystery series for middle school readers in Murder is Bad Manners by Robin Stevens. Two friends, Daisy and Hazel, start their own detective agency and kick off their new endeavor by solving a murder mystery in book one of this nine book series.
The Unwanteds books by Lisa McMann are a dystopian book series for middle grade readers who like a good fantasy novel too. In the book, 13-year-olds are divided into “wanted,” “necessary,” or “unwanted.” Find out what happens when Alex, the main character is labeled as an “unwanted.”
The Enchanted Forest Chronicles
In this book series, your middle schoolers will meet Princess Cimorene, a princess who refuses to be proper. She is everything a princess is not supposed to be and she’s very bored, so bored that she runs away to live with a dragon. Find out what happens after she moves in with the most dangerous dragon around in The Enchanted Forest Chronicles by Patricia C. Wreade.
Lost Art Mystery Series
Does your middle schooler love art? Check out The Art Mysteries by Deron Hicks for a middle school thriller that’s a bit Dan Brown and a bit Jason Bourne. Your kids will love following the clues to solve the mysteries in this 3 book series.
In the bestselling City Spies series, five kids from all over the world become real-life spies! When they’re not attending the local boarding school, they’re honing their unique skills, such as sleight of hand, breaking and entering, observation, and explosives. All of these allow them to go places in the world of espionage where adults can’t.
This five book series follows Mia Tang, a middle schooler living in a motel and managing the front desk. Mia’s parents hide immigrants at the motel. Mia shows middle schoolers the power of courage and kindness in the Front Desk series.
Meet the rangers, the villagers, and discover the magic in Ranger’s Apprentice, a fantasy thriller book series. There are 11 books to satiate your middle schooler’s need for books that are filled with imagination and daring.
If your middle grade readers like stories with magic, don’t miss The Conjurers book series by Brian Anderson. After their parents vanish, Alex and Emma are sent to live with a strict uncle. When flying skeletons called Rag-o-Rocs storm into their home, the kids escape just in time, with their pet rabbit leading the way.
The Explorer Academy series from National Geographic is perfect for middle school readers who love science and animals. In these books, a group of amazing kids communicate with animals and meet up with real-life explorers for adventures that are unforgettable!
Meet the only kid on the FBI director’s speed dial in Framed by James Ponti. This middle school mystery book is the first in a captivating series.
Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus
The main character in Dusti Bowling’s Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus is missing both her arms. She’s got lots of fun stories about why, but the truth is that she was born without them. When she teams up with a boy navigating Tourette syndrome, they solve a mystery and build a lasting friendship at the same time.
Need a quick win? Check out some of our favorite books to read with middle schoolers that aren’t part of a series. Here are some great reads you won’t want to miss.
The Girl Who Stole an Elephant
The Girl Who Stole an Elephant by Nizrana Farook is an Asian novel with a Robin Hood-style heroine your middle schoolers will relate to as they read. This beautiful suspense novel will keep your kids turning pages on the edge of their seats!
In this bestselling award-winning middle-grade novel, four kids meet at the airport when a storm grounds all their flights. The unlikely pair embarks on an unforgettable adventure in Grounded by Aisha Saeed.
A Night Divided
From New York Times best-selling author Jennifer A. Nielsen, A Night Divided is a stunning thriller about a girl who must escape to freedom after the Berlin Wall divides her family between East and West Germany in this historical fiction tale.
Sweep: The Story of a Girl and Her Monster
Sweep: The Story of a Girl and Her Monster is a historical fiction that explores the hidden world of chimney sweeps with a healthy dose of magical realism that’s fantastic for middle school readers.
The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
William Kamkawamba’s novel, The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind, follows the true story of the boy who brought electricity to his Malawian village. It’s a nonfiction memoir your middle schoolers should definitely read this year.
The Birch Bark House
Louise Erdrich reverses the narrative perspective used in most children’s stories about nineteenth-century Native Americans in her book, The Birch Bark House. Instead of looking out at ‘them’ as dangers or curiosities, the author shares her own family history from the inside.
Mr. Lemoncello’s Very First Game
If your middle schoolers loved reading about Mr. Lemoncello’s library, they’ll definitely want to explore Mr. Limoncello’s Very First Game. In this book, readers get to discover what happened before the library and meet a 13-year-old version of Luigi Lemoncello they’ll quickly come to adore.
A Rover’s Story
Res is a rover built to explore Mars. In Jasmine Warga’s book, A Rover’s Story, a robot learns things from the NASA scientists who assembled him and begins to develop feelings. Middle schoolers who like science, astronomy, or robots will enjoy this middle school book.
In Manatee Summer, a boy named Peter fights to save the Florida manatees. In the process, he finds himself caring for his sick grandfather, navigating complicated friendships, and realizing that he still has a lot to learn about the world.
Does your middle schooler like graphic novels? Then you won’t want to miss Cece Bell’s El Deafo. This poignant story about a girl transferring from an all deaf class to a new school with hearing kids won the Newberry Honor Award. It’s a great read for middle school homeschoolers.
The Silver Arrow
The Silver Arrow by Lev Grossman is a thrilling fantasy aboard a magic train. The main characters, Katie and Tom, are looking for excitement, and boy do they find it! Your middle schooler will too as she reads this page turning fantasy book.
The Toothpaste Millionaire
If you’re looking for great literature to help teach your middle schoolers real life skills and foster an entrepreneurial spirit, check out The Toothpaste Millionaire by Jean Merrill. Rufus, the sixth-grade main character uses lots of math, ingenuity, and perseverance to build his own toothpaste business in this fun read.
More Resources For Homeschooling Middle School
There are so many awesome resources for homeschooling middle school kids! Check out some of my favorite resources in the articles below.
- Our Homeschool Curriculum Choices for Middle School
- 30 Educational Games Your Middle Schooler Will Love
- Homeschool Strewing for Middle Schoolers: Tips and Tricks
Do you have a favorite book for middle school homeschoolers that’s not on my list? Share your favorite books for homeschoolers during the middle school years in the comment section. I can’t wait to check out your favorites and add them to our reading list this year!