Books for 11 year old advanced reader: The 50 Best Books for 11- and 12-Year-Olds

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Challenging Books for Young Advanced Readers

Are you trying to find books for your elementary age or middle school age reader who reads at a high school level? It’s tricky! Because it’s important to find a book that is both challenging but also age-appropriate.

Here’s a list of books that are above a 1000 Lexile Measure and appropriate for young advanced readers. All books listed are at a reading level above Lexile 1000. (I used various websites to verify.) This number, the Lexile Measure, indicates the text complexity, more or less. Generally speaking, books that are above 1000 are around upper middle school to high school reading level.

Challenging Books for Young Advanced Readers

I’ve split up these high level books into genre classifications so that your readers can find their favorites.

  • fantasy / sci-fi
  • historical fiction
  • memoir, biographies, and nonfiction
  • classics

Fantasy and Sci-Fi

The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien
The classic Tolkien from which everything begins . . . it’s wordy and descriptive and wonderful. Epic fantasy stories weave together a world of magical creatures where evil is threatening the land. The writing is complex, detailed, and intense.

Outcast of Redwall by Brian Jacques
If you like epic fantasy adventures, this is the series for you.
From The Publisher: Abandoned as an infant by his father, the evil warlord Swartt Sixclaw, Veil is raised by the kindhearted Bryony. Despite concerns from everyone at Redwall, Bryony is convinced that Veil’s goodness will prevail. But when he commits a crime that is unforgivable, he is banished from the abbey forever. Then Swartt and his hordes of searats and vermin attack Redwall, and Veil has to decide: Should he join Swartt in battle against the only creature who has ever loved him? Or should he turn his back on his true father?

Hero and the Crown by Robin McKinley
A great girl-power novel.
From The Publisher: Although she is the daughter of Damar’s king, Aerin has never been accepted as full royalty. Both in and out of the royal court, people whisper the story of her mother, the witchwoman, who was said to have enspelled the king into marrying her to get an heir to rule Damar-then died of despair when she found she had borne a daughter instead of a son. But none of them, not even Aerin herself, can predict her future-for she is to be the true hero who will wield the power of the Blue Sword…

Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
This book was my all-time favorite in high school! It’s science-fiction canon.
From The Publisher: Douglas Adams’s mega-selling pop-culture classic sends logic into orbit, plays havoc with both time and physics, offers up pithy commentary on such things as ballpoint pens, potted plants, and digital watches . . . and, most important, reveals the ultimate answer to life, the universe, and everything. Now, if you could only figure out the question. . . .

Sabriel by Garth Nix
Teens love this book, and so do I. You need to know that it’s about a necromancer so decide if her personal relationship with death and other themes may be too advanced for younger readers. It depends on the reader!
From The Publisher: Sent to a boarding school in Ancelstierre as a young child, Sabriel has had little experience with the random power of Free Magic or the Dead who refuse to stay dead in the Old Kingdom. But during her final semester, her father, the Abhorsen, goes missing, and Sabriel knows she must enter the Old Kingdom to find him. She soon finds companions in Mogget, a cat whose aloof manner barely conceals its malevolent spirit, and Touchstone, a young Charter Mage long imprisoned by magic, now free in body but still trapped by painful memories.
As the three travel deep into the Old Kingdom, threats mount on all sides. And every step brings them closer to a battle that will pit them against the true forces of life and death—and bring Sabriel face-to-face with her own destiny.

Wizard of Earthsea
by Ursula K. Le Guin
From The Publisher: Ged was the greatest sorcerer in Earthsea, but in his youth, he was the reckless Sparrowhawk. In his hunger for power and knowledge, he tampered with long-held secrets and loosed a terrible shadow upon the world. This is the tumultuous tale of his testing, how he mastered the mighty words of power, tamed an ancient dragon, and crossed death’s threshold to restore balance.

The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman
From The Publisher: Lyra is rushing to the cold, far North, where witch clans and armored bears rule. North, where the Gobblers take the children they steal–including her friend Roger. North, where her fearsome uncle Asriel is trying to build a bridge to a parallel world. Can one small girl make a difference in such great and terrible endeavors? This is Lyra: a savage, a schemer, a liar, and as fierce and true a champion as Roger or Asriel could want. But what Lyra doesn’t know is that to help one of them will be to betray the other.

Tales of Beedle the Bard by J.K. Rowling
From The Publisher: Never before have Muggles been privy to these richly imaginative tales: “The Wizard and the Hopping Pot,” “The Fountain of Fair Fortune,” “The Warlock’s Hairy Heart,” “Babbitty Rabbitty and Her Cackling Stump,” and of course “The Tale of the Three Brothers.” But not only are they the equal of fairy tales we now know and love, reading them gives new insight into the world of Harry Potter.

The Wizard of Oz by Frank L. Baum
From The Publisher: Dorothy, her little dog Toto, the Tin Woodman, Scarecrow, and the Cowardly Lion will charm boys and girls of today as much as they delighted children nearly a century ago as they set out on an exciting quest for the elusive Wizard of Oz. Along the way, they’ll encounter the Wicked Witch of the West, the fantastic Winged Monkeys, the Queen of the Field Mice, the kind-hearted Munchkins, and other fanciful creatures.

Historical Fiction

Power of One by Bryce Courtenay
From The Publisher: In 1939, as Hitler casts his enormous, cruel shadow across the world, the seeds of apartheid take root in South Africa. There, a boy called Peekay is born. His childhood is marked by humiliation and abandonment, yet he vows to survive and conceives heroic dreams–which are nothing compared to what life actually has in store for him. He embarks on an epic journey through a land of tribal superstition and modern prejudice where he will learn the power of words, the power to transform lives, and the power of one.

Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy
by Gary D. Schmidt
From The Publisher: It only takes a few hours for Turner Buckminster to start hating Phippsburg, Maine. No one in town will let him forget that he’s a minister’s son, even if he doesn’t act like one. But then he meets Lizzie Bright Griffin, a smart and sassy girl from a poor nearby island community founded by former slaves. Despite his father’s-and the town’s-disapproval of their friendship, Turner spends time with Lizzie, and it opens up a whole new world to him, filled with the mystery and wonder of Maine’s rocky coast. The two soon discover that the town elders, along with Turner’s father, want to force the people to leave Lizzie’s island so that Phippsburg can start a lucrative tourist trade there. Turner gets caught up in a spiral of disasters that alter his life but also lead him to new levels of acceptance and maturity. This sensitively written historical novel, based on the true story of a community’s destruction, highlights a unique friendship during a time of change.

Elijah of Buxton
by Christopher Paul Curtis
From The Publisher: Eleven-year-old Elijah lives in Buxton, Canada, a settlement of runaway slaves near the American border. Elijah’s the first child in town to be born free, and he ought to be famous just for that — not to mention for being the best at chunking rocks and catching fish. Unfortunately, all that most people see is a “fra-gile” boy who’s scared of snakes and tends to talk too much. But everything changes when a former slave steals money from Elijah’s friend, who has been saving to buy his family out of captivity in the South. Now it’s up to Elijah to track down the thief — and his dangerous journey just might make a hero out of him, if only he can find the courage to get back home.

Midwife’s Apprentice by Karen Cushman
From The Publisher: The girl known only as Brat has no family, no home, and no future until she meets Jane the Midwife and becomes her apprentice. As she helps the sharp-tempered Jane deliver babies, Brat–who renames herself Alyce–gains knowledge, confidence, and the courage to want something from life: “A full belly, a contented heart, and a place in this world.” Medieval village life makes a lively backdrop for the funny, poignant story of how Alyce gets what she wants. A concluding note discusses midwifery past and present.

by Sterling North
From The Publisher: Rascal is only a baby when young Sterling brings him home. He and the mischievous raccoon are best friends for a perfect year of adventure—until the spring day when everything suddenly changes.

The Princess Bride by Barry Denberg
From The Publisher: Rich in character and satire, the novel is set in 1941 and framed cleverly as an “abridged” retelling of a centuries-old tale set in the fabled country of Florin that’s home to “Beasts of all natures and descriptions. Pain. Death. Brave men. Coward men. Strongest men. Chases. Escapes. Lies. Truths. Passions.”

War Horse
by Michael Morpurgo
From The Publisher: It is 1914, and Joey, a farm horse, is sold to the army and thrust into the midst of World War I on the Western Front. When Joey is dragged away, his heart aches for Albert, the farmer’s son he is forced to leave behind.In the army the beautiful red-bay horse is trained to charge the enemy, drag heavy artillery, and carry wounded soldiers not much older than Albert off the battlefields. Amongst the clamoring of guns, and while plodding through the cold mud, Joey wonders if the war will ever end. And if it does, will he ever find Albert again?

Island of the Blue Dolphins
by Scott O’Dell
From The Publisher: Here, in the early 1800s, according to history, an Indian girl spent eighteen years alone, and this beautifully written novel is her story. It is a romantic adventure filled with drama and heartache, for not only was mere subsistence on so desolate a spot a near miracle, but Karana had to contend with the ferocious pack of wild dogs that had killed her younger brother, constantly guard against the Aleutian sea otter hunters, and maintain a precarious food supply. More than this, it is an adventure of the spirit that will haunt the reader long after the book has been put down. Karana’s quiet courage, her Indian self-reliance and acceptance of fate, transform what to many would have been a devastating ordeal into an uplifting experience. From loneliness and terror come strength and serenity in this Newbery Medal-winning classic.

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas by John Boyne
From The Publisher: Berlin, 1942: When Bruno returns home from school one day, he discovers that his belongings are being packed in crates. His father has received a promotion and the family must move to a new house far, far away, where there is no one to play with and nothing to do. A tall fence stretches as far as the eye can see and cuts him off from the strange people in the distance. But Bruno longs to be an explorer and decides that there must be more to this desolate new place than meets the eye. While exploring his new environment, he meets another boy whose life and circumstances are very different from his own, and their meeting results in a friendship that has devastating consequences.

The Eagle (The Roman Britan Trilogy) by Rosemary Stucliff
From The Publisher: The Ninth Legion marched into the mists of Northern Britain―and they were never seen again. Thousands of men disappeared and their eagle standard was lost. It’s a mystery that’s never been solved, until now . . .
Marcus has to find out what happened to his father, who led the legion. So he sets out into the unknown, on a quest so dangerous that nobody expects him to return.

Mystery & Adventure

Hatchet by Gary Paulsen
After his plane crashes in the woods, Brian is stranded in the Canadian wilderness with only a hatchet. His journey of survival is incredible and will captivate readers.

The Case of the Peculiar Pink Fan: An Enola Holmes Mystery
by Nancy Springer
Sherlock’s sister hones her detective skills in these historical mysteries.

The Egypt Game by Zilpha Neatly Snyder
From The Publisher: The first time Melanie Ross meets April Hall, she’s not sure they have anything in common. But she soon discovers that they both love anything to do with ancient Egypt. When they stumble upon a deserted storage yard, Melanie and April decide it’s the perfect spot for the Egypt Game. Before long there are six Egyptians, and they all meet to wear costumes, hold ceremonies, and work on their secret code. Everyone thinks it’s just a game until strange things start happening. Has the Egypt Game gone too far?


by Mary Shelley
From The Publisher: Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus, is a novel written by English author Mary Shelley about eccentric scientist Victor Frankenstein, who creates a grotesque creature in an unorthodox scientific experiment.

Women by Louisa May Alcott
From The Publisher: Grown-up Meg, tomboyish Jo, timid Beth, and precocious Amy. The four March sisters couldn’t be more different. But with their father away at war, and their mother working to support the family, they have to rely on one another. Whether they’re putting on a play, forming a secret society, or celebrating Christmas, there’s one thing they can’t help wondering: Will Father return home safely?

Swiss Family Robinson
by Johann Wyss
From The Publisher: Following a wild and raging storm, the Swiss family Robinson are stranded at sea. But the thundering waves have swept them off to a tropical island, where a new life awaits them. Their ship is laden with supplies and the island is packed with treasures, so they soon adapt and discover new dangers and delights every day . . .

by Bram Stoker
From The Publisher: During a business visit to Count Dracula’s castle in Transylvania, a young English solicitor finds himself at the center of a series of horrifying incidents. Jonathan Harker is attacked by three phantom women, observes the Count’s transformation from human to bat form, and discovers puncture wounds on his own neck that seem to have been made by teeth. Harker returns home upon his escape from Dracula’s grim fortress, but a friend’s strange malady — involving sleepwalking, inexplicable blood loss, and mysterious throat wounds — initiates a frantic vampire hunt.

Jungle Book
by Rudyard Kipling
From The Publisher: The tales in the book (and also those in The Second Jungle Book which followed in 1895, and which includes five further stories about Mowgli) are fables, using animals in an anthropomorphic manner to give moral lessons. The verses of The Law of the Jungle, for example, lay down rules for the safety of individuals, families and communities. Kipling put in them nearly everything he knew or “heard or dreamed about the Indian jungle.” Other readers have interpreted the work as allegories of the politics and society of the time. The best-known of them are the three stories revolving around the adventures of an abandoned “man cub” Mowgli who is raised by wolves in the Indian jungle. The most famous of the other stories are probably “Rikki-Tikki-Tavi”, the story of a heroic mongoose, and “Toomai of the Elephants”, the tale of a young elephant-handler.

Anne of Green Gables
by L.M Montgomery
From The Publisher: When the Cuthberts send to an orphanage for a boy to help them at Green Gables, their farm in Canada, they are astonished when a talkative little girl steps off the train. Anne, red-headed, pugnacious and incurably romantic, causes chaos at Green Gables and in the village. But her wit and good nature endears her to the residents.

Treasure Island
by Robert Louis Stevenson
From The Publisher: Set in the eighteenth century, Treasure Island spins a heady tale of piracy, a mysterious treasure map, and a host of sinister characters charged with diabolical intentions. Seen through the eyes of Jim Hawkins, the cabin boy of the Hispaniola, the action-packed adventure tells of a perilous sea journey across the Spanish Main, a mutiny led by the infamous Long John Silver, and a lethal scramble for buried treasure on an exotic isle.

Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
by Arthur Conan Doyle
From The Publisher: Venture back in time to Victorian London to join literature’s greatest detective team — the brilliant Sherlock Holmes and his devoted assistant, Dr. Watson — as they investigate a dozen of their best-known cases.

Story of King Arthur and His Knights
by Howard Pyle
From The Publisher: The legendary adventures of King Arthur, his Knights of the Table Round, and the court of Camelot come to life in a lively and accessible retelling by Howard Pyle.

Call of the Wild
by Jack London
From The Publisher: The story is set in the Yukon during the 1890s Klondike Gold Rush—a period when strong sled dogs were in high demand. The novel’s central character is a dog named Buck, a domesticated dog living at a ranch in the Santa Clara valley of California as the story opens. Stolen from his home and sold into the brutal existence of an Alaskan sled dog, he reverts to atavistic traits. Buck is forced to adjust to, and survive, cruel treatments and fight to dominate other dogs in a harsh climate. Eventually he sheds the veneer of civilization, relying on primordial instincts and lessons he learns, to emerge as a leader in the wild.

Wind in the Willows
by K. Grahame
From The Publisher:  Alternately slow moving and fast paced, it focuses on four anthropomorphised animals in a pastoral version of England. The novel is notable for its mixture of mysticism, adventure, morality, and camaraderie and celebrated for its evocation of the nature of the Thames valley.

The Incredible Journey
by Shelia Branford
From The Publisher: An inquisitive Labrador retriever, friendly bull terrier, and courageous Siamese cat set out through the Canadian wilderness to find their owner in this truly “incredible” adventure. Instinct tells them that the way home lies to the west and together the three house pets face hunger, the natural elements, and wild forest animals as they make their way home to the family they love.

Memoirs, Biographies, and Nonfiction

I Am Malala: How One Girl Stood Up for Education and Changed the World (Young Readers Edition) 
by Malala Yousafzai with Patricia McCormick

This is a powerful, well-told personal story from the wise, self-reflective perspective of Malala Yousafzai and is appropriate for middle-grade readers. Malala draws readers in with her accounts of daily life in Pakistan — the sounds, smells, sights, and habits. Readers are hooked from the first page. As the stage is set, we learn how her country used to be and the fearful place it became with the Taliban’s influence. After she is shot for her blog writing in support of educating females, she’s taken to England for recovery and safety. The confusion and contrast between the countries and cultures really stand out during this time. But what is even more striking is Malala’s hope, positivity, and belief in what she stands for. You can’t read this book and not be changed by it.

Undefeated: Jim Thorpe and the Carlisle Indian School Football Team
by Steve Sheinkin BIOGRAPHY
You don’t have to be a football fan to be mesmerized by this incredible underdog story of grit with the history of football as a backdrop. You don’t really know the history of football until you’ve read the history of Carlisle Indian School and Jim Thorpe. Did you know that a whole team played on the field all at once? Or that a president had to intervene because there were so many deaths from head injuries with no helmets? Jim Thorpe was clearly one of the greatest athletes in the world of all time, and his life wasn’t what you would ever have expected. Steve Sheinkin is one of the best writers you’ll read. The way he put together this book, which facts and how he told the story, is masterful. A must-read!

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand
After Louis Zaperini’s WWII plane goes down in the open ocean — he’s starving, adrift, and prey to enemy planes. His triumphant survival is nothing short of incredible. You’ll be amazed and inspired at his incredible true story.

Hidden Figures (Young Readers’ Edition)
by Margot Lee Shetterly

A well-crafted blend of the historical realities and inspiring life stories of four mathematically talented women who worked to build this country’s aviation and aeronautical programs starting from the Civil Rights era to the Space Race all the way to the Cold War. The text includes black-and-white photographs documenting the women’s lives and the historical events which add to the reader’s understanding. Hidden Figures will educate and inspire teenage readers.

The Boys Who Challenged Hitler: Knud Pedersen and the Churchill Club
 by Phillip Hoose NONFICTION
If you’re teaching leadership or becoming change-makers, use this book! Knut and his friends couldn’t endorse their country of Denmark’s position on allying with the Nazi’s so they decided to do what they could to fight back. Even though they were just teenagers, they managed small acts of sabotage. But more than that, they inspired a full Danish resistance movement!

Bomb: The Race to Build –and Steal–the World’s Most Dangerous Weapon by Steve Sheinkin
Another knock-out nonfiction book from the talented Steve Sheinkin! I’m so impressed by how Sheinkin makes this story come ALIVE like it’s an adventure/mystery/thriller and not real life and true. Well, they do say truth is stranger than fiction. But usually, it’s written like it’s duller than dirt. This book is a great exception — mesmerizing. I wasn’t even interested in the topic until I started reading.

Untamed The Wild Life of Jane Goodall
 by Anita Silvey, forward by Jane Goodall
This is not your average biography for kids with small font and ugly black and white photos. No, it’s so much better! Untamed is an excellent depiction of Jane Goodall’s life with kid-friendly language using kid-appealing layouts of colorful photos. Interesting insets throughout describe tips for kids and information such as sign language. I love the Gombe Family Scrapbook at the end with some of the significant chimps in Jane’s life. I also found it really interesting to learn how this English girl read about Africa as a child and fell in love with it.

Dog Who Wouldn’t Be
by Farley Mowat
From The Publisher: Mutt’s pedigree was uncertain, but his madness was indisputable.   He climbed tress and ladders, rode passenger in an open car wearing goggles and displaying hunting skills that bordered on sheer genius.  He was a marvelous dog, worthy of an unusual boy growing up a raw, untamed wilderness.

All Things Bright and Beautiful
by James Herriot
From The Publisher: All Things Bright and Beautiful is the beloved sequel to Herriot’s first collection, All Creatures Great and Small, and picks up as Herriot, now newly married, journeys among the remote hillside farms and valley towns of the Yorkshire Dales, caring for their inhabitants—both two- and four-legged. Throughout, Herriot’s deep compassion, humor, and love of life shine out as we laugh, cry, and delight in his portraits of his many, varied animal patients and their equally varied owners.


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Book list for pre-teen gifted readers : Suki Wessling, writer

NOTE: This post has been updated on my new blog, The Babblery. Click here to read the most recent version!

Pre-teen gifted readers often run into a problem around the age of ten: as younger children they read everything in children’s literature that they could get their hands on. By the time they reach ten years old, they’re starting to run into roadblocks when looking for appropriate books. Some ten-year-olds are ready to go on to Young Adult fiction, but most aren’t. Young Adult, with its focus on teens’ changing bodies and questioning of their place in the world, is often inappropriate and sometimes very upsetting for “tweens” who have outgrown children’s books but are looking for meaty reading to satisfy their literary cravings.

The list below contains books recommended for this demographic. In general, recommended books will not contain violence described in a visceral way, though books that very sensitive readers might want to avoid are starred. If you have recommendations for this list, please leave them in the comments below.

Enchanted Glass is a favorite, with Jones’s unusual take on magic and wizardry.

  • Adams, Richard: Watership Down
  • Avi: The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle, Crispin at the Edge of the World
  • Alcott, Louisa May: Little Women series
  • Barry, Dave: Peter and the Starcatchers
  • Birney, Betty G.: The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs
  • Brinley, Bertrand R.: The Mad Scientists’ Club
  • Brock, Betty: No Flying in the House
  • Burnett, Frances Hodgson: A Little Princess and The Secret Garden
  • Card, Orson Scott: Ender’s Game series*
  • Clements, Andrew: Frindle
  • Colfer, Eoin: Artemis Fowl series*
  • Coville, Bruce: The Unicorn Chronicles series (starts with Into the Land of the Unicorns)
  • Crossley-Holland: Arthur Trilogy (starts with The Seeing Stone)
  • DiCamillo, Kate: The Magician’s Elephant
  • Divakaruni, Chitra Banerjee: The Conch Bearer
  • Duane, Diane: Young Wizards series* (starts with So You Want to be a Wizard)
  • DuPrau, Jeanne: The City of Ember*
  • Funke, Cornelia: Dragon Rider
  • Enright, Elizabeth: The Melendy Quartet (starts with Saturdays), Thimble Summer
  • Estes, Eleanor: The Witch Family
  • Farley, Walter: The Black Stallion series
  • Federly, Nate: Better Nate than Ever
  • Flanagan, John: Ranger’s Apprentice series
  • Foley, Lizzy K. : Remarkable
  • Funke, Cornelia: The Princess Knight
  • George, Jean Craighead: My Side of the Mountain
  • Hawking, Stephen: George’s Secret Key to the Universe, George’s Cosmic Treasure Hunt
  • Herge, The Adventures of Tintin*
  • Herriot, James: All Creatures Great and Small
  • Hiaason, Carl: Hoot, Flush, Chomp
  • Hunter, Erin: The Warrior series
  • Jacques, Brian: Redwall series* (starts with Redwall)
  • Jones, Diana Wynne: Almost everything! Especially recommended are the Chrestomanci series, Howl’s Moving Castle and sequels, and Enchanted Glass
  • Kay, Elizabeth: The Divide* series
  • Kelly, Jacqueline: The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate
  • Klages, Ellen: The Green Glass Sea, White Sands, Red Menace
  • Konigsburg, E.L.: The View From Saturday
  • Lang, Andrew: Fairy Books
  • Law, Ingrid: Savvy
  • Lawrence, Caroline: Roman Mysteries series (starts with The Thieves of Ostia)
  • Le Guin, Ursula: Earthsea series (the 4th in the series, Tehanu, is very dark)
  • L’Engle, Madeleine: Austin Family Chronicles series (starts with Meet the Austins), A Wrinkle in Time*
  • Lord, Cynthia: Rules
  • McAllister, M. I.: The Mistmantle Chronicles*
  • McKinley, Robin: The Hero and the Crown and The Blue Sword
  • Michener, James: Various historical novels including Chesapeake, Centennial, Texas (may contain historical violence, some sexual content, outdated gender and race attitudes)
  • Montgomery, L.M.: Anne of Green Gables series
  • Nesbit, E.: The Railway Children books plus others
  • Nimmo, Jenny: The Children of the Red King series (starts with Midnight for Charlie Bone)
  • Nix, Garth: Keys to the Kingdom series (starts with Mister Monday)
  • Oppel, Kenneth: Airborn (further books in this series are more violent)
  • Palacio, R.J.: Wonder
  • Paolini, Christopher: Eragon* (further books in the series have graphic depictions of violence)
  • Park, Linda Sue: Project Mulberry and A Single Shard
  • Paulsen, Gary: Hatchet
  • Paver, Michelle: Chronicles of Ancient Darkness series (Wolf Brother is first)
  • Pearson, Barry: Peter and the Starcatchers
  • Pratchett, Terry: Tiffany Aching series (The Wee Free Men, etc. ), The Bromeliad Trilogy (Truckers; Diggers; Wings), The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents
  • Ransome, Arthur: Swallows and Amazons series
  • Reeve, Philip: Larklight, Starcross, Mothstorm
  • Riordan, Rick: Percy Jackson series, Heroes of Olympus series, Kane Chronicles series
  • Rowling, J.K.: Harry Potter series
  • Rupp, Rebecca: Octavia Boone’s Big Questions about Life, the Universe and Everything
  • Sacher, Louis: The Wayside School series, Holes*
  • Snyder, Laurel: Any Which Wall, Penny Dreadful
  • Spinelli, Jerry: Stargirl
  • Stead, Rebecca: When You Reach Me
  • Stevenson, Robert Louis: Treasure Island
  • Stewart, Trenton Lee: The Mysterious Benedict Society series
  • Tolkein, J.R.R.: The Hobbit*
  • Ursu, Anne: The Cronus Chronicles series (starts with The Shadow Thieves)*
  • Verne, Jules: Around the World in 80 Days, Journey to the Center of the Earth
  • Voigt, Cynthia: Homecoming
  • White, T. H.: The Once and Future King
  • Wyss, Johann D.: The Swiss Family Robinson
  • Yee, Lisa: Millicent Min, Girl Genius
  • Yolen, Jane: Young Merlin trilogy

See also:

  • Book list for young gifted readers
  • The Search for the Girl Scientist in Literature
  • Empty Shelves for Gifted Readers


  • Child Lit WIKI
  • KidsReads
  • Hoagies’ Gifted
  • Ambleside Online
  • CommonSense Media
  • J.K. Rowling’s book list page
  • Some of My Best Friends Are Books: Guiding Gifted Readers from Pre-School to High School
  • Wikipedia List of Classic Children’s Books
  • Using Bibliotherapy with Gifted Children
  • Books about Geeks
  • Tamora Pierce’s Book List for Gifted 8-year-olds
  • Geekdad’s Stories about Girls
  • New York Review of Books Children’s book reviews sorted by age range

What programming books would you recommend to a teenager?

Bookshelf: Today the conversation is more substantive — a review of several books, the level of presentation of which is quite accessible to teenagers who are interested in programming. The books are not in the order of my subjective rating or personal preference, but randomly. I will be glad to comments, discussion and recommendations of literature that was not included in this list (not so long, by the way).

So, what to read to teenagers and grandparents, younger students and parents in order to learn programming

1. Java Programming for Children, Parents and Grandparents . Author Jacob Fine.

It can be seen from the title that the book is positioned as the first textbook for a beginner. The language being studied is Java. In the preface, the author states the approximate age at which one can already start learning to program is 11 years old. In my opinion, this is, of course, a bit early, but from the age of 12-13 it is quite possible to start learning Java, especially under the supervision of a teacher. The book was first published in 2004 in English. In 2011, it was translated into Russian, while the text was corrected, supplemented and changed.

The first part of the book explains the basic principles of working in the Eclipse IDE, then the author moves on to the basics of object-oriented programming and explains concepts such as class and object, then the basic constructions of the Java language are studied. It also explains concepts such as applets, exceptions, streams, reading data from files. The book analyzes several examples, gives practical tasks, links to materials for additional reading (though in English). The book is well designed. The volume is just over 200 pages.

Overall subjective rating — 4 out of 5.

2. C# for schoolchildren. Tutorial. Author M. Dreyer.

Martin Dreyer’s book was published in 2011. By the way, it is distributed freely, its text is available on the Microsoft website. Now the author is engaged in software development, but in the past he was a school teacher. The book is intended for readers aged 12-16.

Microsoft Visual C# Express Edition is used as a learning environment. From the very first pages of the book, the concepts of class and object are introduced. It explains in a fun way why these concepts are needed and how to use them. Next, the concept of method is introduced, and it also explains what inheritance is.

The next part of the book is devoted to learning the basic principles of working with Windows Forms.

The last part of the tutorial briefly explains what XML is and provides an introduction to what databases are.

In general, the impression of the book is twofold. On the one hand, the basics of the object-oriented approach in programming are explained quite interestingly, and on the other hand, everything else is given very crumpled, while it is not clear why it was done this way. The total volume of the book is only 120 pages.

Overall subjective rating — 2.5 out of 5.

3. Entertaining programming: Visual Basic. A book for children, parents and teachers. Authors S. Simonovich, G. Evseev

It was published a long time ago, in 2001. The stated age of readers is 12-15 years old. The book is positioned as a self-instruction manual, the material is presented in such a way that even a beginner should master the proposed topics on their own.

At the beginning of the book, a brief historical excursus is made, which tells how and when computers appeared, explains with very simple examples what programming is, what programming languages ​​are, when they were born and why they are different. Next, we talk about different approaches to programming, explain what procedural programming is and how object-oriented programming differs from it.

Then the authors proceed to explain the basics of programming in Microsoft Visual Basic, along the way explaining how information is stored on a computer, how the file system is arranged. Gradually created programs become more complex, new components and some language constructs are added.

In general, the information is given in great detail, but unfortunately, in the form of “they put a button here”, they wrote “something there”. In my opinion, there is a lack of a part in which a description of the basics of the language itself would be given, without focusing on the visual component.

The total volume of the book is 300 pages.

In general, given the age of the book, as well as the style of presentation, the subjective rating is 3 out of 5.

4. Entertaining programming. Tutorial. Author M. Mozgovoy.

Published in 2005. This book does not cover any programming language; in fact, it is a collection of problems from various fields of knowledge. It is assumed that the reader is already familiar with the basics of programming, and has already gained experience in programming, knows how to solve typical tasks (such as sorting and the like). Solution examples in the book are given in Object Pascal.

The main topics covered in this book are the modeling of some physical processes, animation, three-dimensional graphics, mazes, data compression, graphs. I think that these topics will be of interest to those who are really interested in programming and have already gained some experience. Since quite complex topics are covered, I think the target audience of this book will be high school students and elementary students.

The total volume of the book is 200 pages.

Subjective rating — 4 out of 5, but it is worth remembering that the book is not a full textbook on programming.

5. How to program in C++. Authors H. M. Deitel, P. J. Deitel.

Another book that was not originally intended as a textbook for teenagers. However, I have included this book in this review because it captivates with its structure and detailed presentation of the material (more than 1000 pages!). The book has gone through five editions. It has everything from introductory chapters on what a computer is to the Standard Template Library and UML basics.

At the end of each chapter, there are the following subsections — «Terminology», «Common Programming Mistakes», «Good Programming Style», «Tips for Improving Efficiency», «Notes on Programming Techniques», «Self-Test Exercises». The tasks for each chapter are given in three levels of difficulty — simple, advanced and advanced.

The book has over 20 chapters.

In my opinion, this book can be quite used as a tutorial. Who can recommend this publication? I think it is quite suitable for high school students (grades 10-11), although the book will also be useful for students.

However, given the number of pages and the relative complexity of the material presented, I put a subjective assessment of 3.5 out of 5.

6. Programming from zero to … Tutorial for children. Author A.A. Galakhov.

This book is not in my collection, so I can only quote the description, pulled from the net:

“This book is an introductory programming course for schoolchildren and students who want to learn the basics of this art. Although it deals with rather complex things, it is written in a simple and accessible language. Moreover, to simplify the development of the material presented, the author offers his own add-on for the popular programming language Turbo Pascal — Russian Pascal. This will allow young readers at the very beginning of a complex and interesting journey not to worry about memorizing English words or their abbreviations and write programs in their native Russian language. In the book on simple game examples all the most important topics of programming in Turbo Pascal are considered and the basics of object-oriented programming in the Windows environment using the Delphi package are given. To work with it, no prior training is required and only the basics of computer literacy are enough.

Published in 2006, in fact, it is a textbook on Pascal. According to the content, we can conclude that the book gives the basics of Pascal and nothing more. The estimated age of the target audience is 14-15 years old.

I will not rate it, because I do not know in what form the material is presented. Maybe someone has read this book and is ready to share their observations in the form of a commentary?

Unfortunately, there is not so much really useful literature on the basics of programming, such as can be offered to a teenager. However, in the future I plan to continue the search and selection of such books and I am going to share the information I found with you, with the respected community of programmers.

See you soon!

11 best books for moms that everyone should read

A selection of books for moms

We want to tell you about authors who talk about child safety. The Komsomolskaya Pravda publishing house has already published a lot of books by experts — psychologists, pediatricians, nutritionists, adoptive parents — where there is a lot of useful advice for all occasions. The lives of not only children, but also adults. But nothing is more important than the safety of our little ones (no matter how old they are now).

Today we want to tell you about those books in which the authors recommend, advise, talk about the main things: how to save a child’s life and teach him how to properly communicate with other people’s adults. And, of course, as a parent, too, to stay sane.

1. Natalya Remish «So that children do not get lost»

Natalya Remish «So that children do not get lost»

Journalist, writer, author and producer of the series «Just about the important», «About the World and Gosh» tells children in simple words why it is so important to be kinder to people with special needs. And why is it so important to be able to communicate properly with adults if you are far from your own.

Natalia has three children. Therefore, she knows perfectly well how children need to behave on the street if a stranger approaches them. And what to say if he offered to take a walk away from home.

In the book published by «Komsomolskaya Pravda» « So that children do not get lost » Natalia tells and illustrates in verse the safety of the most important people on the planet.

2. Emma Nikitina Let Mom Hear

Emma Nikitina «Let Mom Hear»

Psychologist Emma Nikitina devotes a whole chapter of her book to very important questions: how to tell and explain to a child why you should not trust other people’s adults, how to say “no” correctly. It also lists the names of laws that are important for parents to learn.

And talks about why you should not call the genitals of children «cookies» and «peppers». This topic may seem uncomfortable, but it is very important to teach children to see a dangerous person among stranger adults.

In addition to such serious things as the titles of articles of the Criminal Code, the book “ Let Mom Hear ” has many other useful chapters for parents: about how to potty train, talk about boundaries and explain to a child how to distinguish someone else’s property from your own and what to do with it.

3. Veronica Bondarenko «Super Agent Mom» ​​

Veronika Bondarenko «Super Agent Mom» ​​

A mother of many children (she has five, can you imagine!), a baby swimming coach, an optimist and a very active person, wrote a book about how easy it is to be a mother of many children. Well, yes, so we believed . ..

Veronica actually has a good sense of humor. What is the preface to the book: “Do you want to meet the perfect mom? Who knows how to do everything, manages everything, understands everyone, never gets tired and does not break down, looks great, finds time for sports, self-development, hobbies? So I would like to at least look at such a miracle together. ”

Seriously though, the book « Superspy Mom » has a lot of useful tips on how to survive in a stupid … (zchrknt) house full of children. And how to teach them to interact with each other, not to kill.

4. Elena Lukasheva «You are definitely a good mother!»

Elena Lukasheva «You are definitely a good mother!»

An advanced pediatrician and a person with a great sense of humor popularly talks about the most simple, but such important things:

  • how not to go crazy during sleepless nights (this is not very normal, but yes, everyone had them)
  • how to create a comfort zone for a parent and a joy zone for a child (this can be arranged)
  • how to provide the child with the maximum level of safety in everyday life (almost 100% works!)

In general, the book “ You are definitely good m ama! » is a great parental sedative that subtly explains important things as a bonus.

5. Ekaterina Kuznetsova «Children, go home!»

Ekaterina Kuznetsova «Children, go home!»

A foster mother’s honest story about the difficulties of parenthood. Sincerely about the fact that it is not necessary to give birth to become a real mother. In this book, you will learn how to show your adopted child that family is safe. Especially if the child is rejected from birth. Here is what Catherine says:

“Children who were abandoned from birth received an instruction from their birth mother during pregnancy – “you are not needed”. And very often — not always, fortunately — they do not know how to form attachment. They don’t have that experience. And if not, be prepared to learn it from scratch. To be near, although you are not welcome. Speak all his emotions, even if they hurt you. Show that intimacy can be safe, and fail over and over again. To one day finally teach the baby to trust you infinitely. It can be much more difficult than learning to walk.”

Harder and more delightful at the same time. Even more emotions in the book “ Children, go home! «.

6. Marika Kravtsova “Mom, I want to eat!”

Marika Kravtsova «Mom, I’m hungry!»

Proper nutrition is the biggest headache for parents and a huge component of children’s health. The mother of two children, popular blogger Marika Kravtsova talks about the fact that tasty, safe and healthy food can be in one plate.

A lot of incredible recipes, tested on thousands of Marika’s subscribers and her two babies, in one book. Just imagine: healthy chocolate porridge, beetroot and avocado ice cream, mint sweets, perfect chips! Tried? Here we are not. We go for the book « Mom, I’m hungry!» «.

7. Alexandra Chmuzh «Keys to Childhood»

A psychologist who knows that every mother needs support, because with the advent of a baby, her life literally turns upside down. And not always these changes are perceived joyfully. After all, to suddenly realize that a still small, but already real person completely depends on you is not for every mother.

Alexandra Chmuzh «Keys to Childhood»

With warmth and calm confidence, Alexandra Chmuzh leads her patient-reader to solve the most acute and most common (yes, everyone has experienced this) problems: how to understand why you are angry with a child, Why is the child throwing a tantrum? How to potty train, after all! And most importantly — how to deal with it without being nervous yourself.

In other words, «Keys to Childhood» by Alexandra Chmuzh opens the door to a calm and happy parenthood.

8. Sasha Sovetova «But it will help you»

A very funny and very truthful comic book, a real «instruction for using a child from 0 to 3 years old», as it is written on the cover. A book about how a family is born, and with it a lot of everything:

“First we produced love, then we produced children, and the children produced chaos, chaos, fun, headaches, happiness and funny stories” — this is how Sasha writes , and then the book flies by in an instant. Indeed, instructions on what to do with the child are not given in the maternity hospital. But it can be obtained from mothers with many children.

Sasha Sovetova «But it will help you»

And Sasha — three times a mother — generously shares her experience and charge of vivacity and humor. And an amazing secret ingredient of optimists: if you come up with a magic “but” for each problem, then the problems become much less.

Yes, being a parent is not easy, but «But it will help you»!

9. Anna Guralevich «Kitchen Angels»

Anna Guralevich «Kitchen Angels»

If you don’t believe that you can cook with children, then you haven’t read «Kitchen Angels» yet.

So be it, let’s immediately answer the main question of all mothers: where to find time to clean up the kitchen after cooking with children?

“I will share my secrets of cleanliness. I lay out all the ingredients in advance in bowls and bowls, we have all the equipment necessary for this dish at hand. I arrange everything on the table so that the girls are as comfortable and convenient as possible. And we always have spectators — our favorite dolls, which we seat opposite — and they watch how we cook. And do we do it carefully, ”says Anna.

In addition to a lot of delicious and very healthy recipes, the book contains 50 small but very important tips that will help you understand your child and find a common language with him.

Kitchen Angels can turn your children into real angels!

10. Irina Kudinova, Evgenia Golobokova «My beautiful not ideal child»

Irina Kudinova, Evgenia Golobokova «My beautiful not ideal child»

How to deal with children from 3 to 6 years old, if they do not want to play educational games, eat vegetables, hysteria in the store, break everything and refuse to clean up? And you are increasingly visited by the thought that you are the “wrong” parent and you were given some particularly difficult child . ..

“We offer the easiest and most proven way — through play and reasonable indulgence. The game is the best way to instill good habits in a child and wean them from bad habits, the game is the best developmental lesson and the best way to educate, ”the authors assure.
The book contains 150 different games with which you will convince the child to brush his teeth or open his mouth at the dentist, wash happily and clean up toys by himself.

You will understand that this can be dealt with, and you will be able to proudly say: “My beautiful not perfect child”!

11. Katherine Belnel and Natalie Telfer Mother’s Truth

Katherine Belnel and Natalie Telfer «A Mother’s Truth»

Shameful cases and deadly honest advice from two best friends — Kat and Nat, who have seven children between them. They are cool. And about everyone knows about motherhood:

“We know how it is when you go to the toilet, and your beloved child is dragging behind you.

By alexxlab

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