The Best Books for Your Middle Grade Reader

Posted on 27 Feb 2018 by Anna Scott
It’s World Book Day this week, and that’s always a great opportunity for kids’ books to come under the spotlight. But often there’s a section of readers that don’t get quite so much attention – the middle grade readers. They need riveting stories and titles, but often consider themselves too old for a lot of early reader-style chapter books and might not be ready for young adult fiction just yet. So, if you want to give them something a little bit more original than Enid Blyton, try out these titles as a special World Book Day treat for your young ‘uns…


Children reading


A Murder Most Unladylike

This is the opener to a great series by Robin Stevens that could set your child up for a crime fiction addiction when they’re older (is this a good thing? We think so). Set in a girls’ boarding school in the 1930s, mystery-solving duo Hazel Wong and Daisy Wells attempt to uncover what really happened after an ‘accident’ results in the death of their science mistress. If this book proves a success with your offspring, they’ll be pleased to hear it’s just the beginning of an ongoing series, currently up to its seventh title, and you can use our Waterstones promo codes to take advantage of a reduced price of £5.49 right now.

Perfect for boys and girls from aged 9 and up, although be aware it does feature a fair amount of death (although you might have already guessed that from the title).

A Wrinkle in Time

You are going to be hearing A LOT about this book in the next few weeks thanks to the upcoming Disney adaptation, so why not get in early on the act and read the book first? Perhaps not quite as well known in the UK as in the US, the science fiction classic by Madeline L’Engle is very much of the moment in spite of its age, so introduce your kids to the story of how young Charles tries to track down his missing father after he gets trapped in ‘a wrinkle in time’.

Again, perfect for kids between 9 and 12, although lots of adults will get enjoyment from this one too.

Usbourne Politics for Beginners

Not an obvious ‘fun’ title for World Book Day, but undeniably useful in the current climate. With young people getting more and more interested in the how the world works and how they can influence decision making, it can be argued that learning about politics from an early age is now one of the most useful skills they can develop. Usbourne guides have long been essential educational reading, so add this one to the collection. You never know, they might even start to have a better grasp of what’s going in in the world than us!

This one has been written for children as young as 9, showing the world it's never to early to learn about how politics affects us all.

A Monster Calls

A future modern classic, this may not be the most upbeat read, but it’s definitely one of the most rewarding for this age group. Patrick Ness has written lots of engaging titles for teens, but this one is makes a good bridge for younger readers. If you’re familiar with the film adaptation from a couple of years ago, you’ll know it’s guaranteed to bring about a few tears. When a monster comes to visit young Conor to recite his fables, he teaches him the importance of coming to terms with his mother’s illness. If you decide to search this one out, we can highly recommend the illustrated edition with beautiful drawings by Jim Kay, and this is currently reduced when you order using The Book People promotional codes.

The heavyweight issues dealt with in this book means it's probably more suited to the older end of the middle grade scale (10 and up), but in all honest, it's one of those books that all ages will benefit from.


Lots of variety to get stuck into here, and there’s no better time of year to encourage a bit of reading!

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