Use these children's books and classic stories
to teach tweens 10 to 12 years old the joy of reading!
By Ingrid Law*
Mibs Beaumont is about to turn 13, and she knows that this means she will receive her "savvy," supernatural power that she will need to learn to control in order to not create chaos and arouse suspicion. Before Mibs gets a chance to celebrate her birthday, her father is in a bad car accident and is unconscious in the hospital. Mibs is sure that her savvy (when she figures out what it is) will wake up her dad, so she heads off on a wild road trip in a pink bus with her brothers and the preacher's kids.
Dial, 2008. ISBN: 9780803733060
The Graveyard Book
After the murder of his parents, Nobody Owens finds his way to the graveyard where he is raised by ghosts who protect him from the murderer still at large.
By Neil Gaiman; illustrated by Dave McKean*
HarperCollins, 2008. ISBN: 9780060530921
Ten Things I Hate about Me
Lebanese-Australian Jamilah so wants to fit into her school and avoid being labeled as an outsider that she attempts to hide her heritage by calling herself Jamie, dyeing her hair blond, and wearing blue-tinted contact lenses. As the tension between her school persona and her Muslim and Lebanese home life mounts, she begins to realize that she sees herself as a stereotype and decides to just be her true self.
By Randa Abdel-Fattah*
Orchard Books/Scholastic, 2009. ISBN: 9780545050555
Edward's eyes and his self-taught ability to throw the perfect knuckleball are part of what make him extra special in an already large and loving family. The connection he shared with his siblings continues after his untimely death through a well-matched organ donation recipient.
By Patricia MacLachlan
Simon & Schuster/Atheneum, 2007. ISBN: 9781416927433
Baron knows that the "Bearwalker" is a half-human, half-animal beast that appears in tales told by his Mohawk people. When a school camping trip goes wrong, however, he finds himself facing a real, live monster who is just as deadly and dangerous as the creature from the legend.
By Joseph Bruchac; illustrated by Sally Wern Comport
HarperCollins, 2007. ISBN 9780061123092
The classic nonsense poem at last makes sense when brilliantly illustrated as an urban playground one-on-one basketball game where intimidating size meets quickness and skill.
By Lewis Carroll; illustrated by Chistopher Myers
Hyperion/Jump at the Sun, 2007. ISBN: 9781423103721
Women Daredevils: Thrills, Chills, and Frills
What were women doing between 1880 and 1929? These 14 fascinating women were performing death-defying feats such as walking on the wings of airplanes, taming tigers, diving 60 feet into a tank of water on horseback and more.
By Julie Cummins; illustrated by Cheryl Harness
Dutton, 2008. ISBN:9780525479482
The London Eye Mystery
When Ted's cousin, Salim, disappears while riding the London Eye, it's up to Ted and his sister, Kat, to figure out what has happened. Ted comes up with many interesting theories because, as he states, his brain operates on a different system (he has been diagnosed as having a "syndrome"). Will one of these theories solve the mystery?
By Siobhan Dowd
David Fickling, 2008. ISBN: 9780375849763
Brendan Buckley's Universe and Everything in It
Brendan has a notebook full of questions, and he hopes to find all the answers during his summer vacation. Then, he meets the grandfather he never knew about, and new questions need to be answered: Does his grandpa want him around? And, if not, does it have anything to do with the color of Brendan's skin?
By Sundee T. Frazier
Delacorte, 2007. ISBN 9780385734394
Igraine the Brave
The daughter of two magicians, Igraine wants to be a knight. When their castle is attacked by a treacherous neighbor, Igraine proves her bravery.
By Cornelia Funke
Scholastic 2007. ISBN: 9780439903790
Cracker: The Best Dog in Vietnam
A German shepherd must leave his boy to joins a military canine unit stationed in wartime Vietnam. His new job: using his acute sense of smell to sniff out deadly booby traps. A first-rate tale for readers who like animals and adventure.
By Cynthia Kadohata
Simon & Schuster/Atheneum, 2007. ISBN 9781416906377
Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Greg Heffley’s Journal
Greg and his best friend, Rowley, adjust to middle school, where they are undersized weaklings. When Rowley grows more popular, Greg kicks off a chain of events that tests their friendship.
By Jeff Kinney
Abrams/Amulet, c2007. ISBN: 9780810993136
Orphans, neglectful parents, a baby on the doorstep and a lonely billionaire are some classic themes in children's literature that receive a humorous twist in this delightful, slim volume.
By Lois Lowry
Houghton/Walter Lorraine, 2008. ISBN: 9780618979745
We Are the Ship: The Story of Negro League Baseball
From 1920 to 1945, some of the roughest, fastest and most amazing baseball games took place in the Negro Leagues. Magnificent paintings and fascinating anecdotes introduce Rube Foster, Oscar Charleston and many other unsung heroes of the sport.
By Kadir Nelson
Hyperion/Jump at the Sun, 2008. ISBN: 9780786808328
Maggie knows everything there is to know about the sport of baseball and her favorite team, the Brooklyn Dodgers. She makes friends with a firefighter who shares her interest (even though he's a Giants fan), but their relationship changes when he is shipped off to fight in the Korean War.
By Linda Sue Park
Clarion, 2008. ISBN 9780618927999
Billy Creekmore: A Novel
In 1905, 10-year-old Billy, storyteller extraordinaire, is rescued from an orphanage by his aunt and uncle. His life continues to take on many twists and turns, from the West Virginia mines to the circus, and he discovers much about himself along the way in this fast-paced, Dickensian-style novel.
By Tracey Porter
HarperCollins/Joanna Cotler, 2007. ISBN: 9780060775704
Emma-Jean Lazarus Fell Out of a Tree
Quirky Emma-Jean loves to observe her fellow seventh graders' behavior from afar. When she decides to help a few classmates with their problems, tension and humor ensues.
By Lauren Tarshis
Dial, 2007. ISBN: 9780803731646
Nurk: The Strange, Surprising Adventures of a (Somewhat) Brave Shrew
In this animal fantasy, Nurk, a shrew who likes clean socks, sets out hoping (sort of) for adventure. Inspired by his famous and heroic grandmother, he paddles down a stream in a boat he made from a snail shell. He rescues a dragonfly princess from the stream and becomes a reluctant hero who is happy to return to his quiet life at home.
By Ursula Vernon
Harcourt, 2008. ISBN: 9780152063757
Frannie can see that the new boy in school doesn't fit in. His skin color is different, and everyone calls him "Jesus Boy," but something about him fills her with curiosity, sympathy and a surprising feeling of hope.
By Jacqueline Woodson
Putnam, 2007. ISBN 9780399239892
Are your kids ahead of their time? Try some classics for kids 10 to 12 years old.
Printed from Oprah.com on Friday, March 7, 2014
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