One of my favorite gifts to both give and receive is books. If you are looking to share your love of books with a middle grade reader this season, these are some books you might want to consider:
Uprising by Margaret Peterson Haddix
Uprising is about the Triangle Shirtwaist factory fire in 1911, one of America’s worst disasters, and is one of my favorite books. I cried reading this book, imagining the horrible living conditions and the cruelty and injustice suffered by both immigrants and women of the time. I think it is important to know your history in order to have an appreciation for the life you live today. As tragic as it was, this was an important event that led to improved labor laws in the United States designed to protect the rights and safety of workers.
The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo
In this wonderful, old-fashioned, timeless story, an arrogant china rabbit named Edward learns to look beyond himself and open his heart to love. Spoiled by Abilene, Edward feels superior to others and fails to provide the companionship Abilene’s grandmother had hoped he would provide her granddaughter. His life takes a dramatic turn when he is lost at sea and the adventures that follow stir in him emotions he has never felt before. Love, he learns, is painful, but without it, is life worth living?
Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbit
Have you ever dreamed of living forever? Be careful what you wish for as there are consequences for our choices and interfering with the natural order of life. And be wary of those who covet what they can’t have.
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
Nobody “Bod” Owens lives in an unusual place: a graveyard. Raised by ghosts and other inhabitants of the graveyard after his family is killed, Bod must never leave the cemetery in order to survive the man hunting him down. Follow him on his adventures as he learns to take risks to find his place in the world and that no matter how unconventional, family is what you make it.
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling
If I could live in a book world, this would be it. I was very sad when the Harry Potter series ended because it was like saying good-bye to dear friends. Here we are nine years later and J.K. Rowling has revived Harry and friends as we catch up to him as a father and employee of the Ministry of Magic. The magic then comes to America November 18 with the publishing of the screenplay for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Will this be a start to a whole new magical world to visit for years to come? Let’s hope so! Also check out the now illustrated versions of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, both a feast for the eyes!