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Can you recommend books for a nearly ten yo with a reading age of 13+

43 replies

dollybird · 21/07/2013 20:09

I'm looking for suitable books for my DD for her birthday. She's on the penultimate Harry Potter and also reading the Hobbit. Books that are aimed at 13 years olds don't always seem suitable for a younger child so would appreciate any recommendations. She's not a girly girl, also likes Roald Dahl, David Walliams and Wimpy Kid books, but not sure if she's enjoy books actually aimed at boys iyswim. thanks!

OP posts:
Doyouthinktheysaurus · 21/07/2013 20:12

Ds1 (10) is working his way through the swallows and amazons series which he is really enjoying.

He also loved The 39 Clues Series and he's got My Family and Other Animals waiting to be read.

All of those were ideas I got from MNGrin

Louise1956 · 21/07/2013 20:17

if she enjoys Harry Potter, she might like the Artemis Fowl series by Eoin Colfer. they are about a thirteen year old boy who is a genius and a thief and gets involved in the secret world of fairies. they are very amusing with good characters (female as well as male).

Possibly the Swallows and Amazons series by Arthur Ransome? they are a bit old fashioned (but then so is Harry Potter in a way) but they feature a group of boys and girls having adventures together, and all getting along, which I always liked. nancy Blackett is a particularly attractive character I have always thought, a girl who likes adventurous outdoor pursuits but doesn't make a tiresome fuss about wishing she was a boy or anything like that.

bookishandblondish · 21/07/2013 20:31

Look at different genres - poetry, plays, biographies as well as fiction.

Books - Diana Wynne Jones, Ursula Le Guin, Alan Garner, mark twain, rosemary sutcliffe, Susan cooper, Philip Pullman are all aimed at both genders ( and I read them aged 10/11 with the exception of Phillip Pullman who wasn't on the bookshelves then.)

Biographies - I read Monica dickens when I was quite young, my family and other animals and that sort of ilk.

Poetry - roger mcgough, Simon Amitage are good

Plays - there is something called Connnections which is plays written for youth theatre - the plays are really good.

Louise1956 · 21/07/2013 20:33

Although I haven't read them personally, Percy Jackson and the Olympians by Rick Riordan seems to be a series that is popular with many people who like Harry Potter, my youngest son (12) quite enjoys them.

Takver · 21/07/2013 22:17

Has she read all the obvious classics? Swallows & Amazons as mentioned above, the Laura Ingalls Wilder Little House books, Narnia, Anne of Green Gables, Just William, Jennings, E Nesbit etc.

If she likes Harry Potter, she might also like the Lion Boy trilogy by Zizou Corder, the Charlie Bone series by Jenny Nimmo (and also the Snow Spider trilogy by the same author), Diana Wynne Jones as mentioned above, particularly the Chrestomanci books.

Takver · 21/07/2013 22:18

I'd say Alan Garner & Ursula le Guin maybe better for 10 going on 11 than 9 going on 10 (content rather than reading age)?

booksteensandmagazines · 22/07/2013 01:22

Call of the Wild by Jack London
Bridge to Terrabithia by Katherine Patterson
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

The Bell Between Worpds by Ian Johnstone
Gods and Warriors by Michelle Paver
Mortal Engines by Philip Reeve

I've put together some reading lists with difficulty levels which may be useful:

feetheart · 22/07/2013 01:59

DD (10), but reading above her age, is 3/4s through the 5th Harry Potter that she started yesterday so I am taking notes here.
She has Watership Down, His Dark Materials trilogy (Philip Pullman) and the Lemony Snickett books (all 13 of them) lined up after that if its any help. If that takes us through to September I will be surprised :)

schmalex · 22/07/2013 06:10

How about the Skulduggery Pleasant series?

schmalex · 22/07/2013 06:11

Also Rebecca Stead and Louis Sachar (Holes is fantastic).

Romann · 22/07/2013 06:21

Percy Jackson is really good (Rick Riordan). My 11 year old loved them so much that I'm reading one now. Very impressed!

How about Jane Austen, or "Jane Eyre"? I liked those at 10. Also "To kill a mocking bird". I also liked Agatha Christie and other detective stuff too.

pollywollydoodle · 22/07/2013 06:41

can i ask about the other philip pullman books..dd has been given a series that looks like it's been televised, the ruby in the smoke is one. Are they suitable content wise for a 9-10 yo?

exoticfruits · 22/07/2013 07:00

Anthony Horowitz got my DSs reading at that age.

VeryDullNameChange · 22/07/2013 07:19

DD enjoyed Artemis Fowl, Percy Jackson, Alex Rider, Series of Unfortunate Events, the juvenile Pratchetts (Bromeliad, Maurice), Vivian French, Phantom Tollbooth, Ruby Redfort. Diana Wynne Jones and Frances Hardinge also very good.

DeWe · 22/07/2013 10:08

DD1 at that age had finished all the Alex Rider books, and had moved onto the Cherub/Henderson Boys set. They're child spies. Also Joan Aiken, Geoffrey Trease, Jennings, Just William, Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew . Swallows and Amazon set are fun, but if she's reading age is 13+ she may find them a bit easy. Roman Mysteries also may be a bit easy. At that age her favourite book was Watership Down.

Dd2 is 9yo but advanced reading age. Recently she has read lots of classics, Williard Price (Hal and Roger adventures), The Hobbit, Green Knowe series, Malcolm Saville, Monica Edwards, Arthur Catherall. A lot of these are out of print-try ebay for them. She's more into girly books like Chalet School though.

BlueChampagne · 22/07/2013 12:58

Lord of the Rings should keep her quiet for a bit. I first read it at 10/11. Granted I got more out of it when I re-read it later but still enjoyed it first time round.

Elizabeth Goudge "The Little White Horse"

Second Green Knowe, Joan Aiken, Ursula Le Guin (esp Earthsea). Has she read Susan Cooper's "The Dark is Rising" series?

bookishandblondish · 22/07/2013 17:21

Ruby in the smoke is suitable for 9/10 year olds ( it reads younger than dark materials)

pollywollydoodle · 22/07/2013 19:50

thank you bookish

Steamedcabbage · 22/07/2013 19:54

I second anything by Rosemary Sutcliffe

K M Peyton, Flambards trilogy
Ian Seraillier, The Silver Sword
Geoffrey Trease, Bows Against the Barons

joanofarchitrave · 22/07/2013 19:59

Another vote for Jane Eyre and Monica Dickens.

Has she read any Louisa May Alcott? I think something like Good Wives needs discussing, but Little Women, Eight Cousins and An Old Fashioned Girl still have it in my opinion.

She might like Philippa Gregory, Nevill Shute, 1066 And All That, and maybe the odd Dickens - David Copperfield?

dollybird · 22/07/2013 21:10

wow! thanks for all the suggestions everyone - lots to choose from there, will have to make a list and pick a few for birthday presents then head down the library. I have a copy of Watership Down, although no idea where it came from! Romann I did To Kill a Mockingbird for GCSE English - would the rape storyline be too old for her perhaps? This is what can make it hard to choose appropriate reading material. Apparently her friend who's only a couple of days older (both 10 at end of August) is reading age 15+ so that must be even more difficult!

OP posts:
Periwinkle007 · 22/07/2013 21:50

I don't think the reading age makes a lot of difference to be honest. It is more about reading INTEREST age IMO. If she wants to read younger books then she should be encouraged to do so I think because so many books are quite mature and she might not be ready for them. I still read Dick KingSmith and Chalet School at that age because whilst I had an adult reading age I just didn't want to read the books on offer.

Charlotte Sometimes is good, Moondial (out of print but should still be in libraries or second hand), I liked autobiographies although you would have to select them carefully but perhaps Jessica Ennis or Steve Redgrave who you know will be respectable but also very interesting.

Worth looking in the library for copies of the old Puffin Plus books. They were a bit more grown up but perfectly suitable for 10 year olds, they changed the range and personally I don't like what they do now.

pollywollydoodle · 23/07/2013 00:34

not sure about philippa gregory, mentionned^^
she seems very fond of lurid sex and birthing scenes and witchcraft...i wouldn't want my 9yo to read them

Takver · 23/07/2013 14:52

I would agree with Periwinkle - choose books that she enjoys for subject matter, & don't worry too much about the reading age, if that makes sense.

Reading ahead of their age is awkward for say a 5 or 6 y/o as age appropriate books tend to be very simple and short, and at that point you do have to search around. Once you get to 9/10 I'd see it as a benefit (ie she can read anything she fancies) rather than a constraint (you have to look for suitably 'advanced' books).

DD theoretically has a reading age of 18 but that doesn't mean she needs to be reading angst ridden French existentialists Grin (Good thing since her leanings are more towards trashy fantasy featuring lots of dragons.)

LauraShigihara · 23/07/2013 14:58

Whoever recommended Percy Jackson, I will second that. Plus The Kane Chronicles by the same author, which my fussy DS is really enjoying.

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