The final middle grade fantasy list

ETA 7/24/13: I’ve added a few titles to the list below (and deleted a few that I realized were more YA than MG), but if you want a really up-to-date version, follow me on Pinterest, where I keep a number of book lists, including this one, up to date as new titles become available.


Next week I’ll move on to science fiction, which, if we don’t count stuff published in the 1950s and 60s (I love Bova and Heinlein, but SF is by its very nature forward-looking, not back, and the kids of today need SF that takes them even farther than the SF world they’re already living in), will feel like a very short list. But hey, look at this huge list we just created! Maybe it won’t be so short after all.
So, behind the cut you’ll find the list you all helped me make. It may not contain every suggestion because sometimes I just didn’t know the books well enough to judge whether they would be right for the list, and sometimes I felt like they didn’t fit either “middle grade” or “fantasy” enough for my personal whims. And it’s exactly that, my own whims.

Feel free to copy for your own use and amend as necessary–this isn’t a comprehensive list (though it feels darn close), but hopefully it’s a great resource for any of us wanting to expand our reading. I know it will be for me!

Thanks for all your help!

Alcatraz vs. the Evil Librarians, Brandon Sanderson
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll
Artemis Fowl, Eoin Colfer
Babe: The Gallant Pig, Dick King-Smith
Beauty, Robin McKinley
Bedknob and Broomstick, Mary Norton
Billy Bones, Christopher Lincoln
Boggart, Susan Cooper
The Book of Three, The Black Cauldron, Lloyd Alexander
The Borrowers, Mary Norton
The Chaos King, Laura Ruby
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Roald Dahl
Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator, Roald Dahl
Charlie Bone, Jenny Nimmo
Charlotte’s Web, E.B. White
Children of Green Knowe, L.M. Boston
Children of the Lamp: The Akhenaten Adventure, P.B. Kerr
The Chrestomanci Chronicles, Diana Wynne Jones
Coraline, Neil Gaiman
Darkside, Tom Becker
The Deep Freeze of Bartholomew Tullock, Alex Williams
Dragon Castle, Joseph Bruchac
Dragon Keeper, Carole Wilkinson
Dragonlance: The New Adventures, various authors, including Tim Waggoner, Ree Soesbee, Dan Willis, Jeff Sampson, Christina Woods, Stephen D. Sullivan, and Stan Brown
Dragon’s Milk, Susan Fletcher
Dreamhunter/Dreamquake, Elizabeth Knox
Ella Enchanted, Gail Carson Levine
Eva Ibbotson’s books (I’ve meant to read her stuff for years but haven’t ever gotten around to it)
Fablehaven, Brandon Mull
The False Prince, Jennifer A. Nielsen
Five Children and It, E. Nesbit (and pretty much anything by E. Nesbit)
The Folk Keeper, Franny Billingsley
The Gammage Cup, Carol Kendall
A Gift of Magic, Lois Duncan
Half Magic, Edward Eager
Hall Family Chronicles, Jane Langton
Harry Potter, J.K. Rowling
The Hobbit, J.R.R. Tolkien
The Hoboken Chicken Emergency, Daniel Pinkwater
Hugo Pepper, Paul Stewart & Chris Riddel
Inkheart, Cornelia Funke
Into the Wild, Sarah Beth Durst
James & the Giant Peach, Roald Dahl (man, I loved this one in about 3rd or 4th grade)
The Key to Rondo, Emily Rodda
The Last Dragon, Silvana de Mari
The Last Unicorn, Peter S. Beagle
The Light Princess, George MacDonald
The Lightning Thief, Rick Riordan
The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (Narnia), C.S. Lewis
Little Sister, Kara Dalkey
The Mad Scientists’ Club, Bertrand R. Brinley
The Magic Thief, Sarah Prineas
Many Waters, Madeleine L’Engle (part of the Wrinkle in Time series, technically, but far enough forward that I kind of count it separately)
Mary Poppins, P.L. Travers
Matilda, Roald Dahl
May Bird and the Ever After, Jodi Lynn Anderson
Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH, Robert C. O’Brien
Mister Monday (Keys to the Kingdom), Garth Nix
The Monster in the Mudball, S.P. Gates
The Mouse and His Child, Russell Hoban
My Rotten Life: Nathan Abercrombie, Accidental Zombie, David Lubar (ARC, to be published this August)
The Mysterious Benedict Society, Trenton Lee Stewart
The Name of This Book Is Secret, Pseudonymous Bosch
The Neverending Story, Michael Ende
Nightmare Academy, Dean Lorey
Of Mice and Magic, David Farland
Over Sea, Under Stone, Susan Cooper
Pendragon, D.J. MacHale
Peter Pan & Wendy, J.M. Barrie
The Phantom Tollbooth, Norton Juster
The Power of Three, Diana Wynne Jones
Princess Academy, Shannon Hale
The Princess and the Goblin/The Princess and Curdie, George MacDonald
The Princess Tales (Princess Sonora and the Long Sleep, etc.), Gail Carson Levine
First Test, Page, Squire, and Lady Knight, Tamora Pierce
Ranger’s Apprentice
Red Dragon Codex, R.D. Henham
Redwall, Brian Jacques
Savvy, Ingrid Law
Sea of Trolls, Nancy Farmer
The Seeing Stone, Kevin Crossley-Holland
The Shadow Thieves, Anne Ursu
Skulduggery Pleasant, Derek Landy
Snow Spider (Magician trilogy)
Standard Hero Behavior, John David Anderson
The Fairy Tale Detectives (The Sisters Grimm), Michael Buckley (I LOVE this series)
The Spiderwick Chronicles, Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi
The Stink Files, Holm & Hamel
Stoneflight, Georgess McHargue
The Story of the Treasure Seekers, E. Nesbit
Stuart Little, E.B. White
Swan Sister, Terri Windling and Ellen Datlow
The Tale of Despereaux, Kate DiCamillo
The 13th Reality, James Dashner
39 Clues, Rick Riordan et al.
Tom’s Midnight Garden, Phillippa Pearce
The Trumpet of the Swan, E.B. White
Un Lun Dun, China Mieville
Vampirates, Justin Somper
The Wall and the Wing, Laura Ruby
Warriors, Erin Hunter
Watership Down, Richard Adams
Well Wished, Franny Billingsley
What the Witch Left, The Wednesday Witch, The Secret Tree House, Ruth Chew
The Wind in the Willows, Kenneth Grahame
The Witches, Roald Dahl
Whales on Stilts, M.T. Anderson
A Wolf at the Door, Terri Windling and Ellen Datlow (also in The Dark of the Woods)
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, L. Frank Baum