Eleanor Estes, Louis Slobodkin (Paperback)
Genre: Fiction - Realistic Fiction; Book Themes: Friendship, School life
"The Hundred Dresses" by Eleanor Estes and Louis Slobodkin is a Newbery Honor award winner and a classic children's book in the genre of realistic fiction. The story's main character Wanda Petronski, a Polish-American girl from a poor family, is teased by classmates at school for being different and for saying she has one hundred dresses at home while she is wearing the same faded dress to school every day. Only after Wanda's absence from school do Maddie and Peggy find out the true story about the one hundred dresses and try to make amends. "The Hundred Dresses", one of the best chapter books of the 20th century, appeals to kids in second grade through sixth grade.
Madeleine L'Engle (Paperback)
Genres: Fiction - Fantasy Books, Science Fiction
"A Wrinkle in Time" by Madeleine L'Engle is a truly great classic children's book and one of the best chapter books of the 20th century. Its literature awards include Newbery medal. The main characters of the story are three children: Meg Murray, her brilliant younger brother Charles Wallace, and her friend Calvin. They travel through time and space to rescue Meg's father, who is held prisoner by dark forces on the planet of Camazotz. "A Wrinkle in Time" is a good read aloud book. Children in 4th grade through 7th grade can learn about the battle between good and evil and the power of love from this science fiction and fantasy book.
Kate DiCamillo (Paperback)
Genre: Fiction - Realistic Fiction; Book Themes: Animals, Friendship
"Because of Winn-Dixie" by Kate DiCamillo, a 2001 Newbery Honor book, tells a heartwarming story about love, friendship and tolerance. Main characters of the realistic fiction book are Opal Buloni, a 10-year-old girl, and Winn-Dixie, the dog she has found in the town grocery store. Opal has just moved to Naomi, Florida with her preacher father. Her mother left them seven years ago. Because of Winn-Dixie, Opal makes new friends. Among them are Gloria Dump, a kind old lady called a witch by children, Miss Franny Block, a librarian who loves to tell stories, and Otis, a pet shop worker who plays music to animals. These quirky characters are part of the charm of the chapter book. "Because of Winn-Dixie" appeals to children in 4th grade through 7th grade.
John Reynolds Gardiner, Greg Hargreaves (Paperback)
Genre: Fiction - Realistic Fiction; Book Theme: Animals
In the chapter book "Stone Fox", by John Reynolds Gardiner, main character little Willy enters a dogsled race in order to win prize money and save his grandfather's farm from tax collectors. One of the other racers is Stone Fox, a Native American who has never lost a dog sled race. Children in third grade through sixth grade will enjoy this inspiring story about little Willy and his loyal dog Searchlight. "Stone Fox" is a great book to read aloud.
Judy Blume, Sonia O. Lisker (Paperback)
Genres: Fiction - Humorous Stories, Realistic Fiction
"Freckle Juice" by Judy Blume is a funny easy chapter book in the genre of realistic fiction. Main character Andrew Marcus wants freckles after noticing his classmate Nicky has them. In fact, Andrew wants freckles so bad that he buys a secret recipe for freckle juice from Sharon for fifty cents, his five-week allowance. But freckle juice does not work as expected. Andrew has to draw fake freckles with a blue marker. At school, Andrew's teacher gives him a "freckle remover" to remove the blue freckles. Children in second grade and third grade will enjoy reading this humorous story.
James Howe, Alan Daniel, Deborah Howe (Paperback)
Genres: Fiction - Animal Fantasy, Humorous Stories, Mystery Books; Book Theme: Animals
"Bunnicula" by Deborah Howe, James Howe and Alan Daniel is a favorite chapter book among children. In this humorous animal fantasy book, the Monroe family finds a bunny in a movie theater and names the animal Bunnicula. Chester the cat suspects Bunnicula is a vampire rabbit. Children in elementary school will enjoy reading this funny mystery story.
Sheila Burnford (Paperback)
Genre: Fiction - Adventure Books; Book Theme: Animals
"The Incredible Journey" by Sheila Burnford is a classic animal adventure book. Three animals-- a Siamese cat, a bull terrier, and a Labrador retriever-- make an incredible journey through the Canadian wilderness in search of their family and their home. The pets face hardship, starvation and wild animals on their adventurous journey. The last chapter, in which they find their owners, is very moving. "The Incredible Journey" is a great chapter book for children in 4th grade through 9th grade. Cat and dog lovers will especially love this heartwarming animal story.
Louise Fitzhugh (Paperback)
Genre: Fiction - Realistic Fiction
"Harriet the Spy" is one of the best children's books in the genre of realistic fiction. Louise Fitzhugh creates a memorable character in Harriet, who likes to write down everything about everybody in her notebook, including her friends, her classmates and the people she observes on her spy route. Harriet Welsch has a lot to cope with. Her beloved nanny departs. Her classmates, including her best friends, turn against her after reading her notebook. Kids in 4th grade through 7th grade will enjoy the honest portrayal of this 11-year-old girl.
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