Readers Advisory

Character Driven: Realistic Fiction: Disabilities

Abbott, Tony. Firegirl. A middle school boy’s life is changed when Jessica, a girl disfigured by burns, starts attending his Catholic school while receiving treatment at a local hospital. (NoveList)

Draper, Sharon M. (Sharon Mills). Out of my mind. Considered by many to be mentally retarded, a brilliant, impatient fifth-grader with cerebral palsy discovers a technological device that will allow her to speak for the first time. (NoveList)

Erskine, Kathryn. Mockingbird. This novel examines the impact of a serious disability on an individual fifth-grader — Caitlin has Asperger’s Syndome — and looks at the consequences for an entire community. (NoveList)

Gantos, Jack. Joey Pigza swallowed the key. To the constant disappointment of his mother and teacher, Joey has trouble paying attention or controlling his mood swings when his prescription medicine wears off and he starts acting wired. (NoveList)

Lord, Cynthia. Rules. These tender, funny, generous novels told from the perspective of teenage girls with special needs brothers convincingly explore a wide range of feelings, including guilt, resentment, embarrassment and abiding love. (NoveList)

Patterson, James. I funny: a middle school story. Resolving to become the world’s greatest stand-up comedian despite less-than-funny challenges in his life, wheelchair-bound middle school student Jamie Grimm endures bullying from his mean-spirited cousin and hopes he will be fairly judged when he enters a local comedy contest. (NoveList)

Spinelli, Jerry. Loser. Even though his classmates from first grade on have considered him strange and a loser, Daniel Zinkoff’s optimism and exuberance and the support of his loving family do not allow him to feel that way about himself. (NoveList)

Thiele, Colin. Jodie’s journey. Twelve-year-old Jodie, disabled by juvenile rheumatoid arthritis and no longer able to ride her beloved horse Monarch, faces a crisis when the two of them are alone at her remote Australia home and a devastating fire approaches. (NoveList)

Character Driven: Moving: Realistic Fiction

Howe, James. The misfits. Four students who do not fit in at their small-town middle school decide to create a third party for the student council elections to represent all students who have ever been called names. (NoveList)

Lopez, Diana. Confetti girl. After the death of her mother, Texas sixth-grader Lina’s grades and mood drop as she watches her father lose himself more and more in books, while her best friend uses Lina as an excuse to secretly meet her boyfriend. (NoveList)

Character Driven: Realistic Fiction: Bullying

Collard, Sneed B. Dog sense. After he and his mother move from California to Montana to live with his grandfather, thirteen-year-old Guy gradually adjusts to the unfamiliar surroundings, makes a friend, and learns to deal with a bully, with the help of his Frisbee-catching dog, Streak. (NoveList)

Haddix, Margaret Peterson. Dexter the tough. A sympathetic teacher and her writing assignment help fourth-grader Dexter deal with being the new kid in school after he punches a kid on the first day. (NoveList)

Mackall, Dandi Daley. Larger-than-life Lara. Using the writing techniques she has learned in school, fourth-grader Laney relates how an obese girl new to the class changes the lives of those around her, despite being bullied by her peers. (NoveList)

McKay, Hilary. Indigo’s star. Spurred on by his youngest sister, Rose, twelve-year-old Indigo sticks up for himself and an American boy who has replaced him as the primary target of the school bullies. (NoveList)

Payne, C. C. (Catherine Clark). Lula Bell on geekdom, freakdom + the challenges of bad hair. Ten-year-old Lula Bell Bonner of White House, Tennessee, tries to fade into the background to avoid a bully, but after her beloved grandmother’s death Lula Bell understands about letting her light shine in theĀ darkness. (NoveList)

Salisbury, Graham. Calvin Coconut: trouble magnet. Nine-year-old Calvin catches the attention of the school bully on the day before he starts fourth grade, while at home, the unfriendly, fifteen-year-old daughter of his mother’s best friend has taken over his room. (NoveList)

Salisbury, Graham. Rocket ride. New fears for fourth-grader Calvin include a school bully named Tito and the return of his estranged father, rock star Little Johnny Coconut. (NoveList)

Salisbury, Graham. Kung Fooey. Fourth-grader Cal learns a lot about teasing and standing up for others when a weird new student joins his class, while Stella, the tenth-grader who lives with Cal’s family to help his mother, practices for her driving test. (NoveList)

Spinelli, Jerry. Crash. Seventh-grader John “Crash” Coogan has always been comfortable with his tough, aggressive behavior, until his relationship with an unusual Quaker boy and his grandfather’s stroke make him consider the meaning of friendship and the importance of family. (NoveList)

Spinelli, Jerry. Wringer. As Palmer comes of age he must either accept the violence of being a wringer at his Pennsylvania town’s annual Pigeon day or find the courage to oppose it. (NoveList)

Stewart, Kiera. Fetching. Deeply humiliated by the leader of the popular crowd on the second day of eighth grade, Olivia, who has lived with her grandmother since her mother left the family, plots her revenge using dog training techniques. (NoveList)

Van Draanen, Wendelin. Secret identity. Fifth-grader Nolan Byrd, tired of being called names by the class bully, has a secret identity–Shredderman! (NoveList)

Character Driven: Realistic Fiction: Friendship

Konigsburg, E. L. The view from Saturday. Four students, with their own individual stories, develop a special bond and attract the attention of their teacher, a paraplegic, who chooses them to represent their sixth-grade class in the Academic Bowl competition. (NoveList)

Willner-Pardo, Gina. Jason and the losers. Following his parents’ divorce, a fifth grader goes to live with his aunt and uncle and attends a new school where he changes some attitudes about friendship. (NoveList)

Character Driven: Realistic Fiction: Middle School

Abbott, Tony. Lunch-box dream. Told from multiple points of view, a white family on a 1959 road trip between Ohio and Florida, visiting Civil War battlefields along the way, crosses paths with a black family near Atlanta, where one of their children has gone missing. (NoveList)

Angleberger, Tom. The strange case of the Origami Yoda. There are Star Wars references aplenty in this compelling story filled with convincing dialogue, familiar situations and genuine emotions as various middle school kids (and others) comment on a special classmate with a serious, sometimes puzzling, disability. (Betty Potter)

Benton, Jim. Dear dumb diary: let’s pretend this never happened. In this first book of an extensive series, middle school student Jamie Kelly describes her life at home and at school, including her attempts to triumph over her nemesis, in her diary. (NoveList)

Deriso, Christine Hurley. Talia Talk. Trying to fit in despite having a loud, embarrassing best friend, eleven-year-old Talia becomes a commentator on her middle school’s closed-circuit television program and turns the tables on her mother, a talk show host who has been revealing Talia’s most humiliating experiences for years. (NoveList)

Deriso, Christine Hurley. The Right-Under Club. Over the summer, five middle school girls form a club based on the fact that they all feel neglected and misunderstood by their blended families. (Betty Potter)

Kinney, Jeff. Diary of a wimpy kid. This is a series of books that began as a web comic, and every page features a cartoon. This comic book/novel hybrid features the hilarious predicaments of his underdog main character at school and at home. (Betty Potter)

Peirce, Lincoln. Big Nate: in a class by himself. Book 1 in a series about supremely confident middle-school student Nate Wright. All books in the series are character-driven, sarcastic, witty and thoroughly entertaining. (Betty Potter)

Sonnenblick, Jordan. Dodger and me. The first book in a three book series featuring fifth-grader Willy Ryan and Dodger, the furry, blue chimpanzee genie that only Willy can see. (Betty Potter)

Wallace, Rich. The ball hogs. The first book in a four book action-packed sports fiction series, featuring Ben and the Bobcats coed soccer team. (Betty Potter)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s