NPR logo Summer Reading Picks for Kids: Full List

Summer Reading: Kids

Summer Reading Picks for Kids: Full List

Below, find the full list of columnist John Kelly's summer reading recommendations for young people. To print, choose the "print page" icon at upper right.

Grades 1-3

  • The Magician's Boy by Susan Cooper, illustrated by Serena Riglietti (Margaret K. McElderry)
  • Mr. George Baker by Amy Hest, illustrated by Jon J. Muth (Candlewick)
  • Hachiko: The True Story of a Loyal Dog by Pamela S. Turner, illustrated by Yan Nascimbene (Houghton Mifflin)
  • Mighty Jackie: The Strike-Out Queen by Marissa Moss, illustrated by C.F. Payne (Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books)
  • Read It Aloud: How I Became a Pirate by Melinda Long, illustrated by David Shannon (Harcourt Children's Books)

Grades 4-6

  • Each Little Bird That Sings by Deborah Wiles (Gulliver Books)
  • Saffy's Angel by Hilary McKay (Aladdin)
  • The Giant Rat of Sumatra or Pirates Galore by Sid Fleischman (Greenwillow)
  • Summer Reading Is Killing Me by Jon Scieszka (Viking Books)
  • Toad Rage Morris Gleitzman (Random House)
  • The Tarantula Scientist by Sy Montgomery, photographs by Nic Bishop(Houghton Mifflin)
  • Find Where the Wind Goes: Moments From My Life by Dr. Mae Jemison (Scholastic Press)
  • Read it aloud: How to Train Your Dragon by Cressida Cowell (Little, Brown)

Middle School

  • The City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau (Random House)
  • An American Plague: The True and Terrifying Story of the Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1793 by Jim Murphy (Clarion Books)
  • The Bindi Babes by Narinder Dhami (Delacorte Books for Young Readers)
  • The Travels of Benjamin of Tudela: Through Three Continents in the Twelfth Century by Uri Shulevitz (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
  • For Freedom: The Story of a French Spy by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley (Delacourt Books for Young Readers)
  • Facing the Lion: Growing Up Maasai on the African Savanna by Joseph Lemasolai Lekuton (National Geographic)
  • Last Shot: A Final Four Mystery by John Feinstein (Knopf Books for Young Readers)
  • Wolf Brother by Michelle Paver (HarperCollins)
  • Read It Aloud: Montmorency: Thief, Liar, Gentleman by Eleanor Updale (Orchard)