Best books for kids who are not quite ready for all of the books in the teen section, but have outgrown some of the books in the children’s section.

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Almost Home
Joan Bauer

J BAUER

When twelve-year-old Sugar’s grandfather dies and her gambling father takes off yet again, Sugar and her mother lose their home in Missouri. They head to Chicago for a fresh start, only to discover that fresh starts aren’t so easy to come by for the homeless.


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Flora and Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures
Kate DiCamillo

J DICAMILLO

Rescuing a squirrel after an accident involving a vacuum cleaner, comic-reading cynic Flora Belle Buckman is astonished when the squirrel, Ulysses, demonstrates astonishing powers of strength and flight after being revived.


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Out of My Mind
Sharon M. Draper

J DRAPER

Considered by many to be mentally retarded, a brilliant, impatient fifth-grader with cerebral palsy discovers a technological device that will allow her to speak for the first time.


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The City of Ember (Books of Ember)
Jeanne DuPrau

SF TEEN DUPRAU

In the year 241, twelve-year-old Lina trades jobs on Assignment Day to be a Messenger to run to new places in her decaying but beloved city, perhaps even to glimpse Unknown Regions.


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The Last Dragonslayer: The Chronicles of Kazam, Book 1
Jasper Fforde

SF TEEN FFORDE

As magic fades from the world, Jennifer Strange is having trouble keeping her magician employment agency business afloat, until she begins having visions that foretell the death of the last dragon and the coming of Big Magic.


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The Ruins of Gorlan (The Ranger's Apprentice, Book 1)
John Flanagan

SF TEEN FLANAGAN

When fifteen-year-old Will is rejected by battle school, he becomes the reluctant apprentice to the mysterious Ranger Halt, and winds up protecting the kingdom from danger.


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Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library
Chris Grabenstein

MYS J GRABENSTEIN

Twelve-year-old Kyle gets to stay overnight in the new town library, designed by his hero (the famous gamemaker Luigi Lemoncello), with other students but finds that come morning he must work with friends to solve puzzles in order to escape.


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Charlie Joe Jackson's Guide to Not Reading
Tommy Greenwald

J GREENWALD

Middle schooler Charlie Joe is proud of his success at avoiding reading, but eventually his schemes go too far.


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Stormbreaker (Alex Rider)
Anthony Horowitz

TEEN HOROWITZ

After the death of the uncle who had been his guardian, fourteen-year-old Alex Rider is coerced to continue his uncle’s dangerous work for Britain’s intelligence agency, MI6.


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The Thing About Luck
Cynthia Kadohata

J KADOHATA

Just when 12-year-old Summer thinks nothing else can possibly go wrong in a year filled with bad luck, an emergency takes her parents to Japan, leaving Summer to care for her little brother while helping her grandmother cook and do laundry for the harvest workers.


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The Stonekeeper (Amulet, Book 1)
Kazu Kibuishi

GRAPHIC J AMULET v.1

After chasing after the tentacled
monster that kidnapped their mother, Emily and Navin find themselves in a magical but dangerous world, where they must learn to control a powerful amulet given to them by their inventor grandfather.


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Schooled
Gordon Korman

TEEN KORMAN

Homeschooled by his hippie grandmother, Capricorn Anderson has never watched television, tasted a pizza, or even heard of a wedgie. But when his grandmother lands in the hospital, Cap is forced to move in with a guidance counselor and attend the local middle school.


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11 Birthdays
Wendy Mass

J MASS

After celebrating their first nine same-day birthdays together, Amanda and Leo, having fallen out on their tenth and not speaking to each other for the last year, prepare to celebrate their eleventh birthday separately but peculiar things begin to happen as the day of their birthday begins to repeat itself over and over again.


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The Unwanteds
Lisa McMann

SF J MCMANN

In a society that purges thirteen-year-olds who are creative, identical twins Aaron and Alex are separated, one to attend University while the other, supposedly Eliminated, finds himself in a wondrous place where youths hone their abilities and learn magic.


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Wildwood: The Wildwood Chronicles, Book I
Colin Meloy

SF J MELOY

When her baby brother is kidnapped by crows, seventh-grader Prue McKeel ventures into the forbidden Impassable Wilderness—a dangerous and magical forest at the edge of Portland, Oregon—and soon finds herself involved in a war among the various inhabitants.


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Fablehaven
Brandon Mull

SF TEEN MULL

When Kendra and Seth go to stay at their grandparents’ estate, they discover that it is a sanctuary for magical creatures and that a battle between good and evil is looming.


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Spirit Animals Book 1: Wild Born
Brandon Mull

SF J SPIRIT

Discovering when they come of age that they share a bond with special spirit animals who wield great powers, four children become lone protectors of their world against a dark force that threatens to destroy everyone they love, in a debut installment in a role-playing action adventure series by the best-selling author of the Fablehaven books.


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Airborn
Kenneth Oppel

SF TEEN OPPEL

Matt, a young cabin boy aboard an airship, and Kate, a wealthy young girl traveling with her chaperone, team up to search for the existence of mysterious winged creatures reportedly living hundreds of feet above the Earth’s surface.


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Wonder
R. J. Palacio

J PALACIO

Born with a facial deformity that initially prevented his attendance at public school, Auggie Pullman enters the fifth grade at Beecher Prep and struggles with the dynamics of being both new and different, in a sparsely written tale about acceptance and self-esteem.


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I Funny: A Middle School Story
James Patterson,Chris Grabenstein

J PATTERSON

Resolving to become the world’s greatest stand-up comedian despite less-than-funny challenges in his life, wheelchair-bound middle school student Jamie Grimm endures bullying from his mean-spirited cousin and hopes he will be fairly judged when he enters a local comedy contest.


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Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children (Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children)
Ransom Riggs

HORROR TEEN RIGGS

After a family tragedy, Jacob feels compelled to explore an abandoned orphanage on an island off the coast of Wales, discovering disturbing facts about the children who were kept there.


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The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Book 1)
Rick Riordan

SF TEEN RIORDAN

After learning that he is the son of a mortal woman and Poseidon, god of the sea, twelve-year-old Percy is sent to a summer camp for demigods like himself, and joins his new friends on a quest to prevent a war between the gods.


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The Lost Hero (Heroes of Olympus, Book 1)
Rick Riordan

SF TEEN RIORDAN

Rebuilding their beloved Camp Half-Blood after fending off the evil Titan lord, Percy and his Camp Half-Blood friends begin preparations for a chilling prophecy about the end of the world, which they hope to prevent with the aid of familiar demigods.


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The Red Pyramid
Rick Riordan

SF J RIORDAN

After their father’s research experiment unleashes the Egyptian god Set, Carter and Sadie Kane embark on a journey across the globe—a quest which brings them ever closer to the truth about their family, and their links to a secret order that has existed since the time of the pharaohs.


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Okay for Now
Gary D. Schmidt

TEEN SCHMIDT

As a fourteen-year-old who just moved to a new town, with no friends, an abusive father and a louse for an older brother, Doug Swieteck has all the stats stacked against him until he finds an ally in Lil Spicer.


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The Alchemyst: The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel
Michael Scott

SF TEEN SCOTT

While working summer jobs in San Francisco, fifteen-year-old twins, Sophie and Josh, suddenly find themselves caught up in the deadly, centuries-old struggle between rival alchemists, Nicholas Flamel and John Dee, over the possession of a powerful book holding the secret formulas for
alchemy and everlasting life.


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The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Brian Selznick

CALDECOTT J SELZNICK

When twelve-year-old Hugo, an orphan living and repairing clocks within the walls of a Paris train station in 1931, meets a mysterious toyseller and his goddaughter, his undercover life and his biggest secret are jeopardized.


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Smile
Raina Telgemeier

GRAPHIC J SMILE

From sixth grade through tenth, Raina copes with a variety of dental problems that affect her appearance and how she feels about herself.


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Counting by 7s
Holly Goldberg Sloan

TEEN SCHMIDT

Twelve-year-old genius and outsider Willow Chance must figure out how to connect with other people and find a surrogate family for herself after her parents are killed in a car accident.


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Navigating Early
Clare Vanderpool

HIST J VANDERPOOL

Abruptly placed in a boy’s boarding school in Maine after his mother’s death at the end of World War II, Kansas youth Jack Baker befriends Early Auden, an unusual boy with whom Jack embarks on a quest along the Appalachian Trail in search of a legendary great black bear.


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