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Challenging Reads for 4th & 5th Graders

Recommended books from the J (Juvenile) and Y (Junior High) Fiction collections. Most Y Fiction titles are suitable for grades 6-8, but the Y books listed here are appropriate for many 4th and 5th graders. Find more suggestions for avid 4th and 5th grade readers on our list of Classics. Click here for a print-friendly version of this list.

Children’s Fiction (J)


Alexander The Book of Three    (Also in Y Fiction)
Babbitt The Search for Delicious
Babbitt Tuck Everlasting    (Also in Y Fiction)
Balliett Chasing Vermeer    (Also in Y Fiction)
Brink Caddie Woodlawn
Cheng Honeysuckle House
Collins Gregor the Overlander
Curtis The Watsons Go to Birmingham    (Also in Y Fiction)
Enright Gone-Away Lake
Farley The Black Stallion
Fitzhugh Harriet the Spy
Henkes Protecting Marie    (Also in Y Paperback)
Hoban The Mouse and His Child
Holm Our Only May Amelia
Ibbotson Island of the Aunts
Kennedy Amy's Eyes
Konigsburg (George)
L'Engle A Wrinkle in Time    (Also in Y Fiction)
Lisle Forest
Little Look Through My Window
Lively The Voyage of QV66
MacDonald The Princess and the Goblin
McEwan The Daydreamer
McGraw The Moorchild
Merrill The Pushcart War
Oppel Silverwing    (Also in Y Fiction)
Ormondroyd Time at the Top
Paterson Jip
Pearce Tom's Midnight Garden
Pearson Awake and Dreaming
Peck A Long Way From Chicago
Raskin The Westing Game
Smith 101 Dalmatians
Snyder Cat Running
Taylor The Cay
White The Trumpet of the Swan
Yee Millicent Min, Girl Genius

Junior High Fiction (Y)


Allison Gilda Joyce, Psychic Investigator
Anderson The Last Treasure
Baker The Frog Princess
Choldenko Al Capone Does My Shirts
Cleary Sister of the Bride
Creech Ruby Holler
Durst Into the Wild
Erdrich Birchbark House
Ferris Once Upon a Marigold
Fogelin Crossing Jordan
Funke Inkheart
George Julie of the Wolves
Haddix Among the Hidden
Hale Princess Academy
Hesse The Music of Dolphins
Howe Totally Joe
Jennings The Great Whale of Kansas
Kerr The Akhenhaten Adventure
Konigsburg The View From Saturday    (Also in J Fiction)
Levine Dave at Night
Lord Rules
Napoli North
Nix Mister Monday
O'Dell Island of the Blue Dolphins    (Also in J Paperback)
Park A Single Shard
Ryan Esperanza Rising
Rylant Missing May
Snicket The Bad Beginning
Spinelli Maniac Magee
Springer The Case of the Missing Marquess: An Enola Holmes Mystery
Tolkien The Hobbit    (Also in J Fiction)
White Belle Prater's Boy
Williams Amalee

Last Updated: 6/08