7 Books For Not-Quite YA Readers
I have a younger sister who is at the age where the middle reader books are quite her reading level, but some of the young adults books have topic that are not appropriate. So, for my younger sister, and other kids or parents struggling to find a good book, here are some that I read at that age or read recently that I would recommend for this Not-Quite YA Reader age group.
1. Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles)
Sixteen-year-old Cinder is a cyborg, which has helped her become one of the best mechanics in New Beijing. With her skills being so well known, Prince Kai comes
to her with his broken android. Cinder is super happy to help, but everything goes wrong when her sister, the only one in her family that treats her as such, catches the deadly disease that is spreading across the Earthen Union. Soon after her sister, Peony, is put into quarantine, Cinder is sold by her stepmother for plague research. This series of books is fantastic for young readers and young adults alike. Each character is diverse and has their own story to be told. I loved this series so much and I recommend it to anyone looking for a really good fairytale spin-off. My sister just started reading this and is already loving it.
2. The Keeper of the Lost Cities
Twelve-year-old Sophie is a Telepath. Ever since she's been able to remember, she's been able to hear the thoughts of those around her.
Then she meets a mysterious person who has the same ability. Fitz, this mysterious person, brings Sophie to the one place she feels she belongs. However, there is still one mystery to solve. Why was she sent to live in the human world? This is another series of books that are my absolute favorite. The characters are very loveable and the villains are terrifying. This is the perfect book for not-quite YA readers. It is appropriate for middle readers, yet still exciting enough for YA readers. I recommend this to anyone who really loves fantasy novels.
3. The School for Good and Evil
Every year on the same day, two children are taken from their homes. This has been happening for the past 200 years. One child is sent to the School for Evil and the
other is sent to the School for Good.
This year, it is Sophie and Agatha's turn to be chosen. Sophie, who has been waiting for this day since forever, is ready to go to the School for Good, where she feels she belongs. Agatha, however, has been dreading this day for just as long and is constantly told to prepare herself for the School for Evil. This is another book that is perfect for young readers and YA readers alike. Every time another book would come out, I rushed to the nearest bookstore that I was sure would have it. I also remember all the late nights that I stayed up in order to finish the books in this series.
4. Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children
Sixteen-year-old Jacob takes a trip to a mysterious island after his grandfather dies. The reason he and his father took a trip to this island is because that's where
Jacob's late grandfather came from.
Once at the island, Jacob discovers the ruins of an abandoned orphanage. This is Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. While roaming the ruins, Jacob finds pictures that show that, not only were the children peculiar, they were dangerous. As Jacob continues exploring, he finds out more and more about these children, his grandfather, and even himself.
When I was first given these books, I was very confused on why my mom would get me this. It looked terrifying, and I never really liked terrifying books. I was more into fantasy novels, and still am. I was so wrong. I let the creepy pictures in the book deter me from reading it. While the photos are a little creepy, they are described through the book and it makes them less creepy. The author makes the photos into characters and it was amazing. I recommend this book to anyone whos looking for something different.
5. Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians)
Twelve-year-old Percy was on a school field trip to a museum when he was attacked by Mrs. Dodds, one of his school teachers, who turned into a Fury.
When Percy's mom finds out, she decides that it was time for Percy to know about who he is. She drives Percy and his best friend Grover to Camp Half-Blood, where they are met by a Minotaur who kidnaps Percy's mom and brings her to Hades, the god of the Underworld. Now, Percy, his best friend Grover, and Annabeth Chase have to go on a quest, both for Percy's mother and the Master Lighting Bolt stolen from Zeus.
This series of books is still one of my all time favorites. I read it when I was also in this reading age and it couldn't have been a better time to read it. It made a very boring summer one I will forever cherish. I highly recommend this series for every reader. No matter how old you are, you will love this series.
6. The Name of this Book is Secret (The Secret Series)
Everything about this book is a secret. This includes the title of the book, the names of every character, the names of every place, the name of the author, even
when the book actually takes place is a secret.
All we are given is that it starts on a Wednesday. The two twelve-year old main characters, Cass and Max-Ernest (of course both are fake names), discover the Symphony of Smells, which contains many vials with different kinds of smells. From there, they stumble into a mystery, a dead magician's diary, and enter the hunt for immortality.
This series of books was so much fun to read. The narrator is hilarious and makes sure that the reader is well informed using footnotes through out the book. With the footnotes and the narrator, I became much more interested and invested on the story. This is such a unique set of books, and will forever remain a favorite of mine. I recommend this to young readers who love a good mystery.
7. Legend (The Legend Trilogy)
Fifteen-year-old June is a prodigy in the Republic's highest military circle. Fifteen-year-old Day is the Republic's most wanted criminal.
When June's brother, Metias, is murdered, Day immediately becomes the main suspect. Meanwhile, Day's family has been marked for having the incurable disease that is rapidly spreading through the slums. The day that Day goes to retrieve an antidote, he becomes the Republic's number one suspect for Metias' murder.
I put this book toward the bottom of the list because, while it is a fantastic series of books, it does have some older content, specifically later in the series. Even with this, it is still a fantastic series, and I highly recommend this series to those who are a little older.