Skip to content

Middle Schoolers

Middle school can be a time of change. Your child may have new interests, new friends and lots of new questions. Books are always the best way to explore the world – whether it's a book about different cultures or a book about the girl-next-door. Reading a book alone or together as a family can start a discussion about all those new emotions that are a part of growing up.

Unfortunately, these pre-teen years are when many children lose interest in reading. Richland Library wants your children to be lifelong readers. Our staff knows all the best books; we can recommend titles that even the most reluctant reader will love. Some of our favorites are listed below. Stop by any Richland Library location for even more recommendations from our staff.

Middle schoolers can also help out at the library and earn community service hours as a Junior Volunteer!


Okay for Now by Gary D. Schmidt
Amazon Says: 2011 National Book Award Finalist As a fourteen-year-old who just moved to a new town, with no friends and a louse for an older brother, Doug Swieteck has all the stats stack more...
Amazon Says: 2011 National Book Award Finalist As a fourteen-year-old who just moved to a new town, with no friends and a louse for an older brother, Doug Swieteck has all the stats stacked against him. So begins a coming-of-age masterwork full of equal parts comedy and tragedy from Newbery Honor winner Gary D. Schmidt. As Doug struggles to be more than the “skinny thug” that his teachers and the police think him to be, he finds an unlikely ally in Lil Spicer—a fiery young lady who “smelled like daisies would smell if they were growing in a big field under a clearing sky after a rain.” In Lil, Doug finds the strength to endure an abusive father, the suspicions of a whole town, and the return of his oldest brother, forever scarred, from Vietnam. Together, they find a safe haven in the local library, inspiration in learning about the plates of John James Audubon’s birds, and a hilarious adventure on a Broadway stage. In this stunning novel, Schmidt expertly weaves multiple themes of loss and recovery in a story teeming with distinctive, unusual characters and invaluable lessons about love, creativity, and survival. less...
Amazon


Son by Lois Lowry
Amazon Says: They called her Water Claire. When she washed up on their shore, no one knew that she came from a society where emotions and colors didn’t exist. That she had become a Vesse more...
Amazon Says: They called her Water Claire. When she washed up on their shore, no one knew that she came from a society where emotions and colors didn’t exist. That she had become a Vessel at age thirteen. That she had carried a Product at age fourteen. That it had been stolen from her body. Claire had a son. But what became of him she never knew. What was his name? Was he even alive? She was supposed to forget him, but that was impossible. Now Claire will stop at nothing to find her child, even if it means making an unimaginable sacrifice. Son thrusts readers once again into the chilling world of the Newbery Medal winning book, The Giver, as well as Gathering Blue and Messenger where a new hero emerges. In this thrilling series finale, the startling and long-awaited conclusion to Lois Lowry’s epic tale culminates in a final clash between good and evil. less...
Amazon


Shug by Jenny Han
Amazon Says: SHUG is clever and brave and true (on the inside, anyway). And she's about to become your new best friend. Annemarie Wilcox, or Shug as her family calls her, is be more...
Amazon Says: SHUG is clever and brave and true (on the inside, anyway). And she's about to become your new best friend. Annemarie Wilcox, or Shug as her family calls her, is beginning to think there's nothing worse than being twelve. She's too tall, too freckled, and way too flat-chested. Shug is sure that there's not one good or amazing thing about her. And now she has to start junior high, where the friends she counts most dear aren't acting so dear anymore -- especially Mark, the boy she's known her whole life through. Life is growing up all around her, and all Shug wants is for things to be like they used to be. How is a person supposed to prepare for what happens tomorrow when there's just no figuring out today? less...
Amazon


Mockingbird by Kathryn Erskine
Amazon Says: In Caitlin’s world, everything is black or white. Things are good or bad. Anything in between is confusing. That’s the stuff Caitlin’s older brother, Devon, has always more...
Amazon Says: In Caitlin’s world, everything is black or white. Things are good or bad. Anything in between is confusing. That’s the stuff Caitlin’s older brother, Devon, has always explained. But now Devon’s dead and Dad is no help at all. Caitlin wants to get over it, but as an eleven-year-old girl with Asperger’s, she doesn’t know how. When she reads the definition of closure, she realizes that is what she needs. In her search for it, Caitlin discovers that not everything is black and white—the world is full of colors—messy and beautiful. Kathryn Erskine has written a must-read gem, one of the most moving novels of the year. Praise for MOCKINGBIRD * "Erskine works in powerful imagery throughout." --Publishers Weekly, starred review * "[A] fine addition to the recent group of books with autistic narrators." --Booklist, starred review "A strong and complex character study." --Horn Book "This heartbreaking story is delivered in the straightforward, often funny voice of a fifth-grade girl with Asperger's Syndrome." --Kirkus, starred review "This is...a valuable book." --School Library Journal "Fascinating characters." --Los Angeles Times less...
Amazon


The Skin I'm In by Sharon G. Flake
Amazon Says: Thirteen-year-old Maleeka, uncomfortable because her skin is extremely dark, meets a new teacher with a birthmark on her face and makes some discoveries about how to love who more...
Amazon Says: Thirteen-year-old Maleeka, uncomfortable because her skin is extremely dark, meets a new teacher with a birthmark on her face and makes some discoveries about how to love who she is and what she looks like. less...
Amazon


Hattie Big Sky by Kirby Larson
Amazon Says: Alone in the world, teen-aged Hattie is driven to prove up on her uncle's homesteading claim. For years, sixteen-year-old Hattie's been shuttled between relatives. Tired of be more...
Amazon Says: Alone in the world, teen-aged Hattie is driven to prove up on her uncle's homesteading claim. For years, sixteen-year-old Hattie's been shuttled between relatives. Tired of being Hattie Here-and-There, she courageously leaves Iowa to prove up on her late uncle's homestead claim near Vida, Montana. With a stubborn stick-to-itiveness, Hattie faces frost, drought and blizzards. Despite many hardships, Hattie forges ahead, sharing her adventures with her friends--especially Charlie, fighting in France--through letters and articles for her hometown paper. Her backbreaking quest for a home is lightened by her neighbors, the Muellers. But she feels threatened by pressure to be a "Loyal" American, forbidding friendships with folks of German descent. Despite everything, Hattie's determined to stay until a tragedy causes her to discover the true meaning of home. less...
Amazon


Amazon Says: Series: National Book Award Winner for Young People's Literature, Newbery Honor Book, Printz Honor Book Matteo Alacrán was not born; he was harvested. His DNA came from El more...
Amazon Says: Series: National Book Award Winner for Young People's Literature, Newbery Honor Book, Printz Honor Book Matteo Alacrán was not born; he was harvested. His DNA came from El Patrón, lord of a country called Opium--a strip of poppy fields lying between the United States and what was once called Mexico. Matt's first cell split and divided inside a petri dish. Then he was placed in the womb of a cow, where he continued the miraculous journey from embryo to fetus to baby. He is a boy now, but most consider him a monster--except for El Patrón. El Patrón loves Matt as he loves himself, because Matt is himself. As Matt struggles to understand his existence, he is threatened by a sinister cast of characters, including El Patrón's power-hungry family, and he is surrounded by a dangerous army of bodyguards. Escape is the only chance Matt has to survive. But escape from the Alacrán Estate is no guarantee of freedom, because Matt is marked by his difference in ways he doesn't even suspect. less...
Amazon


Flipped by Wendelin Van Draanen
Amazon Says: The first time she saw him, she flipped. The first time he saw her, he ran. That was the second grade, but not much has changed by the seventh. She says: “My Bryce. Still wa more...
Amazon Says: The first time she saw him, she flipped. The first time he saw her, he ran. That was the second grade, but not much has changed by the seventh. She says: “My Bryce. Still walking around with my first kiss.” He says: “It’s been six years of strategic avoidance and social discomfort.” But in the eighth grade everything gets turned upside down. And just as he’s thinking there’s more to her than meets the eye, she’s thinking that he’s not quite all he seemed. This is a classic romantic comedy of errors told in alternating chapters by two fresh, funny new voices. Wendelin Van Draanen is at her best here with a knockout cast of quirky characters and a hilarious series of misunderstandings and missed opportunities. But underlying the humor are two teens in transition. They are each learning to look beyond the surface of people, both figuring out who they are, who they want to be, and who they want to be with. From the Hardcover edition. less...
Amazon


Stormbreaker by Anthony Horowitz
Amazon Says: Ten years ago, Anthony Horowitz introduced the world to Alex Rider . . . and now his debut mission is back in a special fully loaded anniversary edition! Packed with bonus mat more...
Amazon Says: Ten years ago, Anthony Horowitz introduced the world to Alex Rider . . . and now his debut mission is back in a special fully loaded anniversary edition! Packed with bonus material - including a brand new Alex Rider short story, a letter from Anthony Horowitz, and much more! less...
Amazon


Handbook for Boys: A Novel by Walter Dean Myers
Amazon Says: "What you need to do," Kevin said, "is publish a book called Rules for Every Thing.""If I publish a book," Duke said, "I'm going to call it Handbook for Boys."Growing up more...
Amazon Says: "What you need to do," Kevin said, "is publish a book called Rules for Every Thing.""If I publish a book," Duke said, "I'm going to call it Handbook for Boys."Growing up is tough...really tough.But what if you had a handbook that told you how to figure things out? How to stay out of trouble? How to think about success? How to think about the guy on the street?At Duke's Place, Jimmy and Kevin find out that the handbook isn't written down. It means listening to Duke and his friends talk about their lives. But how can Duke, a senior citizen, understand what it is to be young now?In the tradition of his award-winning book Monster, Walter Dean Myers once again breaks new ground with this extraordinary, original, and complex novel about learning to be a man. less...
Amazon

Print

Comment about this page...