Books Middle Schoolers Are Actually Reading

Middle schoolers want to read more than just the classics. See what they’re actually reading these days with our look at a real-life middle-school student’s bookshelf!

Middle school is a tough time. At a new, bigger school, kids meet a lot of new people, take harder classes, and encounter new situations — not to mention all of the emotional and physical struggles for young teens. Sometimes kids just want to get away from it all. Is there any better escape than books? When kids read, they use their imaginations, build analytical skills, and learn. There’s no downside! Take a look at what 13-year-old Ellie’s (a self-proclaimed dork!) bookshelf looks like.

Science Fiction and Fantasy

Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Wings of Fire: The Dragonet Prophecy by Tui T. Sutherland

The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis

The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey

Dragonriders of Pern series by Anne McCaffrey

Inheritance Cycle series by Christopher Paolini

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon Grace Lin

Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien

Maze Runner by James Dashner

Divergent by Veronica Roth

Ranger’s Apprentice by John Flanagan

Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine

The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan

Fairest by Marissa Meyer

Black Widow: Forever Red by Margaret Stohl

The Unofficial Harry Potter Spellbook by Duncan Levy

Emily Windsnap and the Siren’s Secret by Liz Kessler

Among the Hidden by Margaret Peterson Haddix

Beauty by Robin McKinley

In The Forests Of The Night by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes

Lionboy by Zizou Corder



Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Heidi by Johanna Spyri

Black Beauty by Anna Sewell

White Fang by Jack London

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett

Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare

Pollyanna by Eleanor H. Porter

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain

Babysitting Is A Dangerous Job by Willo Davis Robertson



I Have Lived A Thousand Years by Livia Bitton Jackson

Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank

Autobiography of a Face by Lucy Grealy


Realistic Fiction

13 Treasures by Michelle Harrison

Walk Two Moons Sharon Creech

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Anne Brashares

Ungifted by Gordon Korman

Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library by Chris Grabenstein

The Great Wall of Lucy Wu by Wendy Wan-Long Shang

Pictures of Hollis Woods by Patricia Reilly Giff

The Same Stuff as Stars by Katherine Paterson

The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall

Guys Read: Funny Business (short story collection) by Jon Scieszka

11 Birthdays by Wendy Mass

The Girl Who Was Supposed To Die by April Henry

Ruby Holler by Sharon Creech


Historical Fiction

Lily’s Crossing by Patricia Reilly Giff

Riding Freedom by Pam Muñoz Ryan



The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein

Everything For a Dog by Ann M. Martin

Saddle Club: Horse Crazy by Bonnie Bryant

Flawed Dogs by Berkeley Breathed

The Tiger Rising by Kate DiCamillo

What is on your middle schooler’s book shelf? Let us know!

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