Middle School Boy Books

Mr. Star Wars finishes 7th grade in two days. He has always been a voracious reader and reads at a high level. It has been a challenge this year to keep books in the pipeline that have (mostly) appropriate content for a middle schooler because he is at a place where he can read books intended for an adult audience. Since he is a boy, he gave the polite pass to some of my standby recommendations for middle and high school students (Celia Garth by Bristow and Life as We Knew It by Pfeffer).

I hesitate to classify books as “boy” or “girl”, but it is just a fact that boys typically read books with boy main characters, and girl readers tend to be less gender specific. We hit on some titles that were highly enjoyable. Most fall in the dystopian category because that is such a hot genre right now. We also found several that are spy/secret mission style books, which are en vogue right now too. All have boy central characters.

High Reading Level

  • Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
  • The House of the Scorpion and sequel by Nancy Farmer
  • The Martian (some bad language) by Andy Weir
  • Cherub series by Robert Muchamore
  • When the Legends Die by Hal Borland
  • Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton
  • Cloak of the Light series by Chuck Black

Average Reading Level

  • Beneath and Above by Roland Smith
  • Peak by Roland Smith
  • The Bodyguard series by Chris Bradford
  • Alex Rider series by Anthony Horowitz
  • Crossover series by Kwame Alexander
  • Things Not Seen series by Andrew Clements
  • Loot series by Jude Watson
  • Ranger’s Apprentice and Brotherband series by John Flanagan
  • Conspiracy 365 series by Gabrielle Lord
  • The False Prince trilogy by Jennifer Nielsen
  • Knightley Academy series by Violet Haberdasher

On our middle school summer “to read” list

  • Freakling and Psi Chronicles by Lana Krumwiede
  • The Neptune Project by Polly Hollyoke (girl main character!)
  • The Ability by M.M. Vaughan
  • Ghost and companion books by Jason Reynolds
  • The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton (need at least one classic)
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Middle School Book Club

maze runner

I am sponsoring a 7th grade book club this semester at my school. Even though I am having to deal with the 7th grade beast (I so admire middle school teachers), I love reading books for an “older” audience. Book selection has been a little bit of a challenge. I can’t get the students to agree on one book choice, and it has been tricky to find appropriate books.

Below is my working list for the book club. Several I have ruled out because I think they are better suited for a high school kid. A few were recommended to me, and they are in my “to read” pile.

In the end, I probably could have had a dystopian society book club because the students picked between Maze Runner and Divergent as the first book pick, then traded books with each other, then read the sequels. We just moved on to the Fairy Tale/Fantasy genre, which I forced on them because I wanted to go see the Oz movie as an after school field trip.

The students unanimously picked The Recruit to read after we finish the Fairy Tale books. I anticipate that decision will change by the next meeting. Anything I could add as suggestions to my students? Any advice about the books in the “to read” list?

divergent

Dystopian

  • The Maze Runner series by Dashner
  • Divergent series by Roth
  • Matched trilogy by Condie
  • Ship Breaker by Bacigalupi (slow start, high school)
  • The Chocolate War by Cormier (high school level)
  • Life as We Knew It series by Pfeffer (high school level– could not put this book down)
  • City of Bones, Mortal Instruments series by Clare (8th grade+)

peter and the starcatchers

Fairy Tale

  • Entwined by Dixon
  • Wizard of Oz series by Baum
  • Peter Pan by Barrie
  • Peter and the Starcatchers series by Barry
  • The Grimm Legacy by Shulman

the recruit

Mystery/Spy

  • The Recruit, CHERUB series by Muchamore

On My To Read List

  • Gods Among Us (Divine Masquerade Series) by D.C. Belton
  • Confessions of a Murder Suspect by James Patterson
  • The Apothecary by Ian Schoenherr
  • Red Scarf Girl by Jiang