5 th Grade Booklist
The titles on this list were selected as the “Best of the Best” for fifth grade reading. They were
selected for their appeal to fifth graders and because they are on a fifth grade reading level.
Not included on this list are the Newbery Award winners, and Beehive Award winners. These
titles appear on separate lists available in the library.
Fifth Grade Booklist
The Naked MoleRat
By Mary Amato
When her father begins a longdistance
romance with a Washington, D.C.
Frankie sends fabricated email letters to the
zookeeper in an attempt to end the relationship.
Peter and the Starcatchers
By Dave Barry
Soon after Peter, an orphan, sets sail from England on the ship Never Land,
he befriends and assists Molly, a young Starcatcher, whose mission is to
guard a trunk of magical stardust from a greedy pirate and the native
inhabitants of a remote island.
By Blue Balliett
When strange and seemingly unrelated events start to happen and a precious
Vermeer painting disappears, elevenyearolds
Petra and Calder combine
their talents to solve an international art scandal.
The House With a Clock in Its Walls
By John Bellairs
A boy goes to live with his magician uncle in a mansion that has a clock
hidden in the walls which is ticking off the minutes until doomsday. Beware
this one is a little scary!
The Children of Green Knowe
By L.M. Boston
Tolly comes to live with his greatgrandmother
at the ancient house of Green
Knowe, and becomes friends with three children who lived there in the 17 th
The Fairy Tale Detectives: The Sisters Grimm #1
By Michael Buckley
Orphans Sabrina and Daphne Grimm are sent to live with an eccentric
grandmother that they have always believed to be dead. They move to
Ferryport Landing where fairy tale characters such as Snow White and the
Big Bad Wolf reside as citizens.
By Andrew Clements
The noisy fifth grade boys of Laketon Elementary School challenge the
equally loud fifth grade girls to a "no talking" contest. Could you be silent
for 2 whole days? Read to see who wins!
By Eoin Colfer
private investigator Fletcher Moon, nicknamed "Half
Moon" because of his shortness, must track down a conspiracy or be framed
for a crime he did not commit.
The Castle Corona
By Sharon Creech
Two orphaned peasant children discover a mysterious pouch, the contents of
which lead them to the majestic Castle Corona, where their lives may be
Elijah of Buxton
By Christopher Paul Curtis
In 1859, elevenyearold
Elijah Freeman, the first freeborn
child in Buxton,
Canada, which is a haven for slaves fleeing the American south, uses his
wits and skills to try to bring to justice the lying preacher who has stolen
money that was to be used to buy a family's freedom.
The Ruins of Gorlan: The Ranger’s Apprentice #1
By John Flanagan
Will is rejected by battleschool, he becomes the
reluctant apprentice to the mysterious Ranger Halt, and winds up protecting
the kingdom from danger.
The Top 10 Ways to Ruin the First Day of 5 th Grade
By Ken Derby
Follows the humorous attempts of fifth grader Anthony "TB" Madison to
become a guest on his favorite television show, "The Late Show with David
By Cornelia Funke
Meggie learns that her father, who repairs and binds books
for a living, can "read" fictional characters to life when one of those
characters abducts them and tries to force him into service.
My Side of the Mountain
By Jean Craighead George
A young boy relates his adventures during the year he spends living alone in
the Catskill Mountains, including his struggle for survival, his dependence
on nature, his animal friends, and his ultimate realization that he needs
By Jessica Day George
Orphaned after a fever epidemic, Creel befriends a dragon and unknowingly
inherits an object that can either save or destroy her kingdom.
By Roderick Gordon
When Will Burrows and his friend Chester embark on a quest to find Will's
archaeologist father, who has inexplicably disappeared, they are led to a
labyrinthine world underneath London, full of sinister inhabitants with evil
intentions toward "Topsoilers" like Will and his father.
By Dan Gutman
After foiling a terrorist hijacking aboard their airplane, fourteenyearold
Jimmy, his younger sister, and two skateboarding friends crashland
plane and try to survive in a forest wilderness until help arrives.
By Anthony Horowitz
After the death of the uncle who had been his guardian, fourteenyearold
Alex Rider is coerced to continue his uncle's dangerous work for Britain's
intelligence agency, MI6.
Emmy and the Incredible Shrinking Rat
By Lynne Jonell
When Emmy discovers that she and her formerly loving parents are being
drugged by their evil nanny with rodent potions that can change people in
frightening ways, she and some new friends must try everything possible to
return things to normal.
The Tail of Emily Windsnap
By Liz Kessler
After finally convincing her mother that she should take swimming lessons,
Emily discovers a terrible and wonderful secret about
herself that opens up a whole new world.
The Green Glass Sea
By Ellen Klages
Dewey Kerrigan, an elevenyearold
in 1943, sets out on a train headed west
to go live with her father, a scientist involved in a top secret government
By Gordon Korman
Homeschooled by his hippie grandmother, Cap Anderson has never watched
TV, tasted a pizza, or even heard of a wedgie. But when his grandmother
lands in the hospital, Cap is forced to move in with a guidance counselor and
attend the local middle school. While Cap knows a lot about tiedyeing
Zen Buddhism, no education could prepare him for public school.
By Gail Carson Levine
In a land where beauty and singing are valued above all else, Aza eventually
comes to reconcile her unconventional appearance and her magical voice,
and learns to accept herself for who she truly is.
By Mike Lupica
After he is cut from his travel basketball teamthe
very same team that his
father once led to national prominencetwelveyearold
forms his own team of castoffs
that might have a shot at victory.
The Merchant of Death: Pendragon #1
By D.J. MacHale
Bobby Pendragon is a seemingly normal and somewhat reluctant 14yearold
boy who suddenly discovers he has the ability to transport to other
worlds where he has a quest to fulfill.
By Robin McKinley
When Jake Mendoza, who lives in the Smokehill National Park where his
father runs the Makepeace Institute of Integrated Dragon Studies, goes on
his first solo overnight in the park, he finds an infant dragon whose mother
has been killed by a poacher.
The Candy Shop War
By Brandon Mull
Nate, Summer, Trevor, and Pigeon meet the owner of the
new candy store in town and are given a magical candy that endows them
with super powers, they find that along with its benefits there are also
Wolf Brother: Chronicles of Ancient Darkness #1
By Michelle Paver
6,000 years in the past, twelveyearold
Tarak and his guide, a wolf cub, set
out on a dangerous journey to fulfill an oath the boy made to his dying
travel to the Mountain of the World Spirit seeking a way to
destroy a demonpossessed
bear that threatens all the clans.
How to Steal a Dog
By Barbara O’Connor
Living in their car after their father leaves them virtually penniless,
Georgina, desperate to improve their situation and unwilling to accept her
overworked mother's calls for patience, persuades her younger brother to
help her in an elaborate scheme to get money by stealing a dog and then
claiming the reward that the owners are bound to offer.
Paint the Wind
By Pam Munoz Ryan
After her overprotective grandmother has a stroke, Maya, an orphan, leaves
her extremely restricted life in California to stay with her mother's family on
a remote Wyoming ranch, where she discovers a love of horses and
encounters a wild mare that her mother once rode.
The Wednesday Wars
By Gary D. Schmidt
During the 1967 school year, on Wednesday afternoons when all his
classmates go to either Catechism or Hebrew school, seventhgrader
Hoodhood stays in Mrs. Baker's classroom where they read the plays of
Shakespeare and Holling learns much of value about the world he lives in.
By Jerry Spinelli
Mourning the loss of his mother, nineyearold
David forms an unlikely
friendship with independent, quirky thirteenyearold
Primrose, as the two
help each other deal with what is missing in their lives.
The Mysterious Benedict Society
By Trenton Lee Stewart
After passing a series of mindbending
tests, four children are selected for a
secret mission that requires them to go undercover at the Learning Institute
for the Very Enlightened, where the only rule is that there are no rules.
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Tiger: The Five Ancestors #1
By Jeff Stone
Five young warriormonk
brothers survive an insurrection and must use the
ancient arts to avenge their Grandmaster.
By Sandi Toksvig
Bamse and his Jewish friend Anton participate in the Danish
Resistance during World War II.
A Crooked Kind of Perfect
By Linda Urban
Zoe Elias, who longs to play the piano but must resign herself
to learning the organ, instead, finds that her music has a positive impact on
her workaholic mother, her jittery father, and her school social life.
Way Down Deep
By Ruth White
In the West Virginia town of Way Down Deep in the 1950s, a foundling
called Ruby June is happily living with Miss Arbutus at the local boarding
house when suddenly, after the arrival of a family of outsiders, the mystery
of Ruby's past begins to unravel.
By N.D. Wilson
While his widowed mother continues to search for him, elevenyearold
Tom, presumed dead after drifting away down a river, finds himself trapped
in a series of underground caves with another survivor and a dog, and
pursued by murderous treasurehunters.