Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Science Fiction/Fantasy Recommendations for 10-15 year old readers! (5th grade and up!)

Lately I've seen several facebook posts asking for SciFi/Fantasy requests for late tweens/early teens (10-14 year old 5th-9th graders) Here's a list I created. Mostly based on books I enjoyed at that age. Or books I've read and discussed with kids within that age range.

EDIT 2/2017 - I've added ADULT, YA, or MG to designate the original intended audience Adult, Young Adult/Teen, or Middle Grade.

Dragonriders of Pern - Anne McCaffery (Start with Dragonsong, or the short story collection A Gift of Dragons is excellent and even contains a story with a tween-aged protagonist!) Many people have concerns about this series because there are sexual consent issues. ADULT
The Girl Who Owned a City by O. T. Nelson (One of my favorite post-apocalyptic novels - written before that was even a genre!!) There is also a graphic novel version. YA
The My Teacher is an Alien series by Bruce Coville (I devoured these in 4th grade! I also recommend Jeremy Thatcher Dragon Hatcher and most of his other books!) MG
Handbook for Dragon Slayers by Merrie Haskell (Not your typical "princess" story, way better! - Themes in this book include being differently-abled, bravery, duty/desire, bullying/mistreatment, kindness, strength, and not judging a book by its cover.) MG
Kid vs Squid by Greg Van Eekhout (I read this standing in a bookstore! It was fun!) MG
The Protector of the Small quartet by Tamora Pierce (This and the Beka Cooper trilogy are my two favorites! All of her books are excellent, with diverse and interesting characters.) MG & YA depending on her Series
His Dark Materials trilogy by Phillip Pullman (This series has anti-theism themes and if you are religious I recommend reading them and discussing them together. I really enjoyed the books, they are well-written.) MG/YA
Inkheart trilogy by Cornelia Funke (Admittedly, I never finished the second book, but I LOVED the first one! I've been told the later books get pretty dark.) MG/YA
Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt (This book is so well-written and very thought-provoking!) MG/YA
Another Fine Myth series by Robert Aspirin (Pun-lovers only! wink emoticon I was an early teen when I read the first book, but I didn't read any more of them til I was in my 20s, the first was the best imho.) ADULT
Tales of a Fifth Grade Knight by Douglas Gibson (This is on my to-be-read list! But it looks fun!) MG
Secret of Dragonhome by John Peel (I was obsessed with this book in 10th grade! I haven't yet read the long-awaited sequel!) MG/YA
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman (So good - honestly I'd give this book to 8 year olds -as long as they like scary stuff) MG/YA 
[Anything] by Roald Dahl (Definitely beloved fantasy books!) MG
The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster (I remember loving this in 7th grade!) ADULT
Zombie Baseball Beatdown by Paolo Bacigalupi (It was a really quick read for me, I read it for DETCON1 - and it was an excellent adventure!) MG
Enders's Game by Orson Scott Card (only if you think you/your youth can handle it -many parents have issues with the 6yr old killing another child at the beginning of the novel) ADULT
Chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis (classic fantasy) ADULT/Family
I have found that some kids struggle with The Hobbit/LOTR trilogy but they often works better as a read-aloud or listened to on audiobook. ADULT
Harry Potter (of course) by J.K. Rowling MG/YA (equivalent to Harry's Age in the books)
The Tiffany Aching novels by Terry Prattchett (These books are hilarious! The Nac Mac Feegle's have the best names!) YA/ADULT
Xanth books by Piers Anthony (Tip: while you don't have to read these in order, I recommend starting with A Spell for Chameleon then skipping to Castle Roogna - I wasted two years not reading this series because the second book is really boring. Some later plots only make sense if you have read the earlier books - I stopped reading them after #22 These books also have some sexual consent issues and misogynistic ideals.) ADULT
Fablehaven by Brendon Mull (On my to-read list) YA
Eon/Eona by Alison Goodman (This duo is so well-written!!! Seriously, I love these two books!! - If you like Tamora Pierce's books you'll probably love these as well!! I actually pre-ordered Eona because I couldn't wait for it to be released!) YA
The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale (Apparently this is now a series, I've only read this one - and it was shelved in Adult Fiction when I worked at Borders! It is a wonderful book about using your own gifts!) ADULT/YA

I hope this list is helpful! Also, add anything you think I'm missing in the comments!

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