Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Top Ten Tuesday: Middle Grade Beach Reads

Obviously, the perfect beach read will look different for everyone. Since there are so many awesome lists of novels for YA and adults (click on the links here to see them), I thought I'd give my list a Readatouille slant and focus on books for middle grade children, particularly girls 8 - 12. Here are ten amazing books that will transport young (and older) readers to another place and time.

by Polly Shulman

The Grimm Legacy

A young teen goes to work in a lending library that specializes in artifacts--and there’s a special collection called the Grimm Legacy that consists of objects from fairy tales that have certain strange powers. If you liked When You Reach Me, you'll love this one!

by Shannon Hale

 Princess Academy

The prince will select his future bride from the girls in Miri's village--and that means every girl must attend Princess Academy and learn to be a princess.

by Eleanor Estes

The Witch Family

One of my most beloved childhood favorites, and still a great read. This book is chock-full of memorable characters, including best friends Amy and Clarissa, Malachi the spelling bumblebee, Hannah, the little witch girl, her baby sister, Weenie Witch, and  wonderfully scary Old Witch. There's even a little mermaid and a mermaid baby sister.

by Phoebe Stone

The Romeo and Juliet Code

This is not a teen romance, as the cover suggests. It's actually a quirky family mystery set in World War II. The main character loves the books of Frances Hodgson Burnett, and vows to become an authority on them. Click here for my complete review.

by Elise Broach

Shakespeare's Secret

There might be a diamond hidden in Hero's new house--and it may hold the secret to Shakespeare's true identity. Hero (who was named for a character in Much Ado About Nothing) and her new friend, Danny, are determined to solve the mystery.

by Meg Wolitzer
The Fingertips of Duncan Dorfman

An insider look at the world of competitive Scrabble. Sort of like the documentary Word Wars--only with preteens, and secret powers, and a far more uplifting and satisfying story. My complete review is here.

by Ingrid Law


Everyone in Mibs' family has a 'savvy'--a supernatural power that arrives when they turn thirteen. If you enjoy Savvy, you'll also want to read its sequel, Scumble.

by Wendy Mass

The Candymakers

Four kids enter the magical world of a candy factory to compete in a high-stakes contest. You won't understand how the characters' interwoven stories connect until the very end, when the loose ends come together in a satisfying and heartwarming conclusion.

by Annie Barrows
The Magic Half

 Miri has a twin--but she's not from the present. This is a charming timeslip novel about a girl who must find a way to help her counterpart in 1935. Barrows is the author of the enchanting Ivy and Bean and coauthor of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society (which would definitely be on my list of top ten beach reads for grownups, if I were doing one).

by Elizabeth Kay

 The Divide 

The first in the Divide series. Felix is spending what may be his last summer at the continental divide in Costa Rica. He falls unconscious and slips through the divide into another world, where he is befriended by an elfin girl named Betony and Ironclaw, a mythical animal called a brazzle.

Here are more great middle grade summer reading recommendations.

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by the list-loving bloggers at The Broke and the Bookish.

Each week they post a new Top Ten list on a particular theme. Everyone is welcome to join--click here to find out how.


kayerj said...

love your recommends today, love the titles and the authors. looks like fun beach reading to me. kaye—the road goes ever ever on

Angela said...

The Grimm Legacy sounds like a fantastic read.

marissa | Rae Gun Ramblings said...

I loved princess academy. Candymakers sounds so cute!

here's my TTT

Mirka Breen said...

Very nice list, Ruth. Now I have to find a beach to go with it.

VikLit said...

Great recs, must check out Magic Half, sounds intriguing!

Kelly Hashway said...

Great recommendations! I love the cover of the Grimm Legacy.

LHughes said...

I love Princess Academy and Shakespeare's Secret :)

Did you know a sequel to Princess Academy is coming out? It's going to be called Palace of Stone.

I've had Savvy on my to-read list for ages. I should really pick it up and finally read it this summer!

Great list!

Ruth Donnelly said...

Kaye, thanks for stopping by and commenting.

Marissa, Princess Academy is one of my favorites. And a sequel is coming... see below!

Mirka, I know--if you find a beach, let me know. ;)

Thanks VicLit, hope you enjoy Magic Half.

Kelly, Grimm Legacy is cool, inside and out.

Lauren, I did NOT know that! So excited!

Barbara Watson said...

What a great idea, Ruth! Some of these I've read (and loved), some are on my to-read list, but some I haven't heard of, so thank you.

Ruth Donnelly said...

Barbara, I'm glad you found some new ones to enjoy!

Marcia said...

Thanks for this spotlight, Ruth. I've read several of these, and the rest I'm adding to my TBR right now.

Becki @ TheFlutterbyRoom said...

Great recs. They all look and sounds really interesting. I will have to keep an eye out for them.

Anette said...

What a wonderful list! The Magic Half is now on my TBR-list :)

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz said...

I love how you chose children's books. Delightful!

Here's my Top Ten Most Vivid Settings in Books.I'd love for you to stop by and see what you think!

April (BooksandWine) said...

I want to read ALL OF THE BOOKS on your list. I just love Middle Grade and the power it has to transport you. I guess MG really appeals to me because I can go in and not worry about a love triangle popping up, but get a truly fantastical story.

Lovely list and thanks for these recs!


Krystianna said...

Great list! The Romeo & Juliet Code sounds pretty good.

Thanks for sharing! :)