Summertime is officially on its way. The weather is warming, the trees are filling in with greenery, and school bells everywhere are ringing their final goodbyes for the year. Bookbags and uniforms are abandoned for beach totes and swimwear as kids embrace the sun with reckless abandon.
Unfortunately, during these months, the dreaded words, “I’m bored!” will at some point in time, become a daily mantra. It is my custom to promptly hit the library and introduce my kiddos to the fiction world that I embraced and loved as a child. Not only will they have something to do, but it will keep their minds from atrophying over the break, and perhaps give them a leg up on the coming school year.
I’ve put together a list of 10 books that I (and many others) loved as a child and hopefully, yours will too.
1. Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
This enchanting story about a childhood friendship, imagination, and loss is a classic story that has moved generations to tears. As with any children’s book-turned-movie, I promise a movie night after they’ve read the book!
2. Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. by Judy Blume
Judy Blume’s coming of age story is a tale relatable to every pre-teen who struggles with religion, fitting in, boys, and puberty. A must-read for every tween.
3. The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
The fantastical world of Narnia has been entertaining millions of children for decades. C.S. Lewis spins a masterful tale of love and redemption in a magical world full of mythical creatures living beyond the wardrobe.
4. Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery
The freckled, red-headed, spunky orphan from Green Gables not only won the hearts of her fictional compatriots but those of children young and old around the world. Bonus: a new Netflix series, Anne with an E is a great visual companion after they finish each book.
5. The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgsen Burnett
Burnett captured the mystery and wonder of (as the name implies) a secret garden that is more than meets the eye in this classic tale of a lonely orphan.
6. Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls
Get a box of tissues to go with this book. This sad tale of love, adventure, and a boy and his hunting dogs is haunting and memorable.
7. The Giver by Lois Lowry
Recently a box office hit starring Meryl Streep and Jeff Bridges, The Giver is a Newberry medal recipient. The story follows a young boy, Jonas, who learns the secrets of his society aren’t quite as utopian as he once believed.
8. Fear Street Saga by R.L. Stine
R.L Stine, also the author of the wildly popular Goosebumps series, is master storyteller of horror for kids. The series features 25 spine-tingling stories that are sure to keep your kid(s) reading.
9. The Baby-Sitters Club Series by Ann M. Martin
Who didn’t love these sassy girls? With 35 novels full of babysitting adventures and friendship, the fun and gossip don’t stop. Great for pre-teens and early teens with plenty of time to read!
10. Tiger Eyes by Judy Blume
This was by far one of my favorite books as a teen. Another tear jerker and a Judy Blume great, this is a story of heartbreak, learning to let go, and moving past pain. Hopefully, it will become your child’s next favorite, too.
While the list above includes many of my favorites, it’s hardly a complete list. I know that there are many other great stories that could be added to it. Which books have you read? Which would you add? Share this article with friends and compare lists. Who’s the bigger book nerd?
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