Monthly Archives: November 2012

Middle Grade Book List

Back on August 7th NPR announced the results of their summer’s poll seeking the Top 100 Teen Books. When I used this list for a YA panel I participated in, I noted a number of these titles are commonly shelved as Middle Grade books. Several people at that talk and since (especially with the holidays upon us) have asked me for recommendations for the younger crowd, specifically for kids who have read the Hunger Games at the ripe old age of say, eleven, and think they should now shop in the teen section for their next read.

Uh, no.

Every library and bookstore section has a range of reading and maturity levels. Of course every reader varies, but it’s fair to say at the younger ages, it helps if the parent/adult knows the book, reads a review or asks for help to know what you’re getting into. Of course, this takes time!

There are so many books, I can’t cover them all, but for starters I took the NPR list (original on website here) and have broken it down to which of those books are shelved in the juvenile fiction section – grades 3 to 6. Per my daughter’s suggestion, I left off literary fiction titles that might be read in 6 to 8th grades. Few kids want to be gifted a ‘school book’.

I have made some notations, if I know something of the book. Please note the numbering is from the original list, in case you’d like to go back and mark up a printout.

1. Harry Potter (series), by J.K. Rowling

5. The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien

11. The Giver (series), by Lois Lowry

14. Anne of Green Gables (series), by Lucy Maud Montgomery (younger MG)

15. His Dark Materials (series), by Philip Pullman (older MG)

30. Tuck Everlasting, by Natalie Babbitt

31. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie

36. Howl’s Moving Castle, by Diana Wynne Jones

40. Abhorsen Trilogy / Old Kingdom Trilogy (series), by Garth Nix (in teen, but I’ve read them and they fit the older MG reader)

42. Discworld / Tiffany Aching (series, by Terry Pratchett (Discworld is adult fantasy, but suitable for older MG – a favorite series of mine. Tiffany Aching is a series for younger shelved in teen, but good for MG)

44. The Dark is Rising (series), by Susan Cooper (loved this series)

51. Treasure Island, by Robert Louis Stevenson (shelved multiple places)

60. Something Wicked This Way Comes, by Ray Bradbury (Gr 6+ fantasy novel)

65. The Bartimaeus Trilogy (series), by Jonathan Stroud

73. The Last Unicorn, by Peter S. Beagle (Gr 6+ – fantasy novel)

76. The Blue Sword, by Robin McKinley

80. The Goose Girl, by Shannon Hale

81. Daughter of the Lioness / Tricksters (series), by Tamora Pierce (in teen, but good for older MG)

83. The Immortals (series), by Tamora Pierce (in teen, but good for older MG)

84. The Enchanted Forest Chronicles (series), by Patricia C. Wrede (younger MG)

86. Circle of Magic (series), by Tamora Pierce

92. Leviathan (series), by Scott Westerfeld (in teen, but good for older MG)

94. The Chronicles of Chrestomanci (series), by Diana Wynne Jones

98. The Hero and the Crown, by Robin McKinley

100. Betsy-Tacy Books (series), by Maud Hart Lovelace (younger MG)

Sorry, I found I couldn’t stick to where the books are shelved. Perhaps I need to cull out an overlap list, for that awkward 11 to 14 age group. More on my to do list!

Six Sentence Sunday #13

Another week of edits on my WIP The Farm: When the farm owner leads the new artist through the outbuildings on a tour, Daeryn drops what he’s doing and follows along to meet her, instantly raising the hackles of his co-workers.

Jac flipped her hair over one shoulder. “Oh, please.  Just because you’re lead now, you think you can ditch your chores to meet the new girl?”

“I didn’t—”

The guys snickered.

Guess he had.

Thanks for joining me and other sixers!  The main Six Sentence Sunday website is here, or writers are posting at #sixsunday.

Vixen 2012 Finalists!

Congratulations to the finalists in the Maryland Romance Writers’ Reveal Your Inner Vixen contest!

Single Title

The Soldier by Anna Richland
Silver Platter by Babbette Jongh
Not Quite Legal by Christina Elle

Series Contemporary

Dating Ms. Wright by Maggie Kelley
Dating Dr. By-the-Book by Barbara Lohr
One More Night by Samantha Evans


Heart’s Conviction by Lila Gillard
Deception by Alyssa Alexandra
The Raven’s Heart by Louisa Cornell


Ghost Wife by Stephanie Draven
Jaded Hope by Rachell Nichole
Mirror Reader by Karen Duvall


Running From Shadows by Karen Bynum
A Matter of Heart by Amy Fellner Dominy
Shieldmaiden Born by S.M. Jacobson

Six Sentence Sunday #12

In my WIP The Farm, a mystery pest is feeding on the fall crops that Daeryn and his team of nocturnal predators guard. They have run down one of the furry black animals, but lost it before getting a good look.

They all shifted and Jac led them a couple of hundred feet around a rock outcrop and down a dry ravine. To Daeryn’s nose, the burrow in the bank was exactly as she’d described: overwhelmingly rabbit, but a trace of the pest scent that lurked around the damaged crops and…something else.

Maraquin snorted the air from her nostrils, took another whiff, but shook her head. “I smell it, but have no idea.”

Zar backed from the small hole, looking the most puzzled. “This sounds stupid, but it reminds me of my old granny’s house.”

Thanks for stopping by! Please visit other writers and their Six Sentence Sunday offerings through the website, or via #sixsunday.

Six Sentence Sunday #11

I’m deep into edits of my WIP, The Farm, and thinking of little else, thus missed several Six Sentence Sundays. But my two machine excerpts have drawn the attention of the friend of a friend, who I understand is itching for more. Yes, I have more odd machines in the story! But first, I think it’s time to meet one of the guys—can’t say if he’s the hero!

Daeryn Darkcoat’s four tough paws carried him down a dirt road bisecting Wellspring Cooperative Farm. The moon, just past waxing, provided the bit of light his polecat eyes needed to see the acorn squash on the right and a late planting of bush beans on the left. Nothing amiss in the rows of plants his nocturnal sight discerned in sharp grays and blacks.

Flicking his round ears back and forth to the few stray calls above the rise and fall of the crickets, Dae trotted on. He reached an interior crossroad on a hummock and slowed, pacing a tight circle and finally stopping to peer westward up and down the treeline where only the autumn leaves stirred.

Where was that wolf bitch?

Other sixers are here: Click! Or if you’re tweeting: #sixsunday. Thanks for reading!

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