Posted in Books, Family life, First Friday Five, Reading

First Friday Five: Great Books for Grade-schoolers

There are so many wonderful Children’s books out there that I couldn’t fit them all into one First Friday Five post, so consider this a bonus. Next week, I’ll post some titles for older kids and after that, look for some of my favorite picture books.

My kids are big readers and we’re often asked for recommendations

My second-grade son helped me curate this list of series that appeals to grade school age kids. I’ve included buy links for your convenience. I do not benefit from the sales in any way, these are just books we love and want to share.

Without further ado, First Friday Five – the Great Grade School Book Edition.

  1. The Imaginary Veterinary Series by Suzanne Selfors, illustrated by Dan Santat
    Dr. Woo’s Worm Hospital hides some pretty big secrets as youthful apprentices Pearl and Ben find out. Kids and adults will enjoy the humor in this terrific series that blends mystery, fantasy creatures and real world problems. As an adult, I appreciate the subtle messages about friendship, finding strength in what others see as a weakness and problem solving. Dan Santat’s illustrations are pitch perfect. I think he’s one of the best in the biz.
    Find these books on Amazon or Barnes&Noble
  2. Bad Kitty series by Nick Bruel  
    How much do we love Bad Kitty around my house? We buy the books in hard cover. There are picture book editions, but the chapter books are the standouts. Bruel breaks the third wall, so to speak and talks directly to Bad Kitty at times, but more importantly, he has an amazing way of breaking down difficult subjects in ways that make them easy enough for kids, adults and bad kitties to understand. With the US presidential election coming up, do yourself a favor and get Bad Kitty for President.
    Find Bad Kitty at Amazon or Barnes & Noble
  3. Geronimo Stilton Series by Geronimo Stilton
    I admit to a little professional jealousy. I can barely write a book a year, but Geronimo puts out a new book or graphic novel about every month plus he runs the most famouse newspaper in New Mouse City. These fun adventure stories are a great way for kids to learn about other places and perfect for kids just starting to read independently. My son is particularly fond of the Kingdom of Fantasy subseries. Find Geronimo Stilton at Amazon or Barnes&Noble
  4. Cam Jansen Series by David A. Adler 
    My son is a big fan of mysteries, but this is his favorite straight up mystery series. There is a “Young Cam Jansen” series that is great for that time when kids are transitioning to longer books and then the regular Cam Jansen mysteries for independent readers. There are plenty of clues to solve the mystery, with a few red herrings thrown in. Heroine Cam has a photographic memory and now when my son wants to remember the details of a moment he says “click,” because that’s what Cam does.  Available at Amazon or Barnes&Noble 
  5. Notebook of Doom Series by Troy Cummings
    I think of this as a less disgusting alternative to Captain Underpants. My son thinks the Notebook of Doom books are just plain fun. The monsters are not to scary and tend toward the absurd. Available at Amazon or Barnes&Noble

This time of year, lots of us are shopping for ourselves, for friends, and for family.  If you don’t have a specific child on your shopping list, please consider donating a book to a child in need. There are myriad organizations that help put books into the hands of children such as First Book, as well as ones locally based in your community.

And if you have any books to recommend for the grade school set, please do so below. My son is always on the lookout for new books, but overindulgent self promo will make me sad and will be removed.


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