Manchester, Connecticut

Great Books for Fifth Graders

  • Avi. Poppy.* (J Avi)
    • Poppy the deer mouse urges her family to move next to a field of corn big enough to feed them all forever, but Mr. Ocax, a terrifying owl, has other ideas.
  • Balliett, Blue. Chasing Vermeer.* (J Balliett)
    • When seemingly unrelated and strange events start to happen and a precious Vermeer painting disappears, eleven-year-olds Petra and Calder combine their talents to solve an international art scandal.
  • Barry, Dave. Peter and the Starcatchers.* (J Barry)
    • Soon after a young orphan named Peter sets sail from England on the ship Never Land, he befriends a young Starcatcher, whose mission is to guard a trunk of magical stardust from a greedy pirate and other inhabitants of a island.
  • Choldenko, Gennifer. Al Capone Does My Shirts. (J Choldenko)
    • A twelve-year-old boy named Moose moves to Alcatraz Island in 1935 when guards' families were housed there, and has to contend with his extraordinary new environment in addition to life with his autistic sister.
  • Clements, Andrew. Frindle. (J Clements)
    • When he decides to turn his fifth grade teacher's love of the dictionary around on her, clever Nick Allen invents a new word and begins a chain of events that quickly moves beyond his control.
  • Cooper, Susan. The Dark is Rising.* (J Cooper)
    • On his eleventh birthday Will discovers that he is the last of the Old Ones, destined to seek the six magical Signs that will enable the Old Ones to triumph over the evil forces of the Dark.
  • Cottrell Boyce, Frank. Framed. (JCD Book Cottrell Boyce)
    • Dylan and his sisters have some ideas about how to make Snowdonia Oasis Auto Marvel into a more profitable business, but it is not until some strange men arrive in their small town of Manod, Wales with valuable paintings, and their father disappears, that they consider turning to crime.
  • Danziger, Paula. United Tates of America: A Novel with Scrapbook Art. (J Danzinger)
    • Eleven-year-old aspiring artist Skate experiences many changes when she enters middle school, finds her best friend drifting away from her, and loses her beloved great-uncle. Along with this often funny story are tips on scrapbooking.
  • DiCamillo, Kate. Because of Winn-Dixie. (J DiCamillo)
    • Ten-year-old India Opal Buloni describes her first summer in the town of Naomi, Florida, and all the good things that happen to her because of her big ugly dog Winn-Dixie.
  • DuPrau, Jeanne. The City of Ember.* (J DuPrau)
    • In the year 241, twelve-year-old Lina trades jobs on Assignment Day to be a Messenger to run to new places in her decaying but beloved city, perhaps even to glimpse Unknown Regions.
  • Eager, Edward. Half Magic.* (J Eager)
    • Four children looking forward to an ordinary summer enjoy a series of fantastic adventures by double-wishing on an ancient coin.
  • Gaiman, Neil. The Graveyard Book. (J Gaiman)
    • Nobody Owens is a normal boy, except that he has been raised by ghosts and other denizens of the graveyard.
  • George, Jean Craighead. Julie of the Wolves.* (J George)
    • While running away from home and an unwanted marriage, a thirteen-year-old Eskimo girl becomes lost on the North Slope of Alaska and is befriended by a wolf pack.
  • Ibbotson, Eva. The Secret of Platform 13. (J Ibbotson)
    • Odge Gribble, a young hag, accompanies an old wizard, a gentle fey, and a giant ogre on their mission through a magical tunnel from their island to London to rescue their King and Queen's son who was stolen as an infant.
  • Jacques, Brian. Redwall.* (J Jacques)
    • When the peace of Redwall Abbey is shattered by the evil rat Cluny and his villainous hordes, Matthias, a young mouse, determines to find the legendary sword of Martin the Warrior which will help Redwall's inhabitants destroy the enemy.
  • Levine, Gail C. Ella Enchanted. (J Levine)
    • In this novel based on the story of Cinderella, Ella struggles against the childhood curse that forces her to obey any order given to her.
  • Lord, Cynthia. Rules. (J Lord) (JCD Lord)
    • Twelve-year-old Catherine just wants a normal life. Which is near impossible when you have a brother with autism and a family that revolves around his disability. She's spent years trying to teach David the rules-from "a peach is not a funny-looking apple" to "keep your pants on in public"-in order to stop his embarrassing behaviors. But the summer Catherine meets Jason, a paraplegic boy, and Kristi, the next-door friend she's always wished for, it's her own shocking behavior that turns everything upside down and forces her to ask: What is normal?
  • Riordan, Rick. The Lightning Thief.* (J Riordan)
    • Twelve-year-old Percy Jackson learns he is a demigod, the son of a mortal woman and Poseidon, god of the sea. His mother sends him to a summer camp for demigods where he and his new friends set out on a quest to prevent a war between the gods.
  • Weeks, Sarah. So B. It. (J Weeks)
    • Although she lives an unconventional lifestyle with her mentally disabled mother and fearful neighbor, Heidi has a lucky streak that makes their lives much easier. When a mysterious word in her mother's vocabulary begins to haunt her, Heidi's thirst for the truth leads her on a cross-country journey in search of the secrets of her past.
  • Wiles, Deborah. Each Little Bird That Sings. (J Wiles)
    • Comfort Snowberger is well acquainted with death since her family runs the funeral parlor in town, but the ten-year-old is unprepared for the series of heart-wrenching events that begin with the sudden death of her beloved great-aunt.

*This book is part of a series.