Scythe

By Neil Shusterman Published: 2016 AR level: 6.5 AR points: 17.0 Word count: 102433 I suggest 8th through 12th grade. I wasn’t sure what to think about a book with an image of a reaper in red on the front cover. Yes, the artwork was glorious, but I tend to shy away from anything too…

The Last Kids on Earth

By Max Brallier Illustrated by Douglas Holgate Published 2015 AR Level: 4.1 AR Points: 3.0 Word Count: 21916 I suggest 3rd through 6th (but don’t be surprised to see 7th graders enjoying a sneaky read!) You had me at MONSTER APOCALYPSE!(!!!) The first in a highly popular “Last Kid’s” series, this book is a romp….

The Adventurer’s Guide to Successful Escapes

By Wade Albert White Published 2016 AR level: 5.7 AR points: 10.0 I suggest 3rd through 7th grade. Sometimes, you just want to let your imagination run wild. And sometimes, you’re pleased to have someone launch it to a bizarre and wacky universe that feels “out of this world.” That’s what this fantastic middle grade…

If I Stay

By Gayle Forman Published 2009 AR level: 5.3 AR points: 8.0 I suggest 8th through 12th grade. This is one of those books you should read, but it may not be an easy journey. This story, about a girl in coma who must come to terms with whether she wants to stay or go, will…

Three Times Lucky

By Sheila Turnage Published 2013 AR Level 5.2  AR Pts: 4.0. Word count: 62,217 I recommend 3rd through 6th grade. This is truly one of my favorite books: quirky characters oozing with unique personality; a quaint setting that is a character in itself; and a mystery that breathes you in. While that’s plenty, my favorite thing…

The Great Treehouse War

By Lisa Graff Published 2017 AR level: 5.4 AR points: 5.0 I suggest 3rd through 6th grade. I read this novel because my daughter was working on the Oklahoma Sequoyah intermediate book nominations, and she recommended it. What I discovered was a fun and funny book about a girl who has to get through to…

The Bad Guys

By Aaron Blabey Published 2016 AR level: 2.4 AR points: 0.5 I suggest 1st through 3rd grade. How can you not fall in love with the big bad wolf when he’s trying to show you what a nice guy he is? And when all his bad guy friends fail to cooperate during his persuasive little…

Dreamland Burning

By Jennifer Latham Published 2017 AR level: 5.9 AR points: 13.0 I suggest 6th through 12th grade. I think the topic of race is a very salient one at this moment in history. And, I think this book does an excellent job showing where we have been, and where we should be going. I found…

Wonder

By R.J. Palacio Published 2012 AR level: 4.8 AR points: 11.0 I suggest 3rd through 10th grade. There is no doubt something special about this book. In a world where I get the sense that many people are letting hate and ill will grow, we could use many, many more books like Palacio’s Wonder. I wish there…

The Revenant

By Sonia Gensler Published 2011 AR level: 5.3 AR points: 11.0 I suggest grades 6th through 12th. I have a great respect and regard for the Cherokee. Also, my husband and children are registered tribe members, so that only makes me more attune to the culture and history of this Native American tribe. Gensler does…

Space Case

By Stuart Gibbs Published 2014 AR level: 5.3 AR points: 11.0 I suggest 4th through 8th grade. I am absolutely obsessed with space right now, and who wouldn’t be? With the 50th anniversary of the moon landing coming up, it’s a great time to read a book like Space Case, which features the main character…

Salt to the Sea

By Ruta Sepetys Published: 2016 AR level: 4.5 AR points: 10.0 I suggest 7th through 12th grade. I first fell in love with author Ruta Sepetys’ writing in the novel Between Shades of Gray. There are times when you’re not sure your’e going to enjoy a book centered on World War II events (or events leading up…