Good Books for Boys

Here’s a list of books that will appeal to boys whether they’re reading on their own or as a part of a parent/child book club. Many of these books are reviewed on You can also visit to purchase anything you see here that you like. Got suggestions to add to the list? Please send them to

2nd – 3rd Grade Books

  • Charlotte’s Web – E. B. White, Charlotte the spider and Wilbur the pig become friends.
  • The Number Devil – Hans Magnus Enzensberger, a beguiling number adventure.
  • The Real Thief – William Steig
  • The Secret School – Avi
  • The Trumpet of the Swan – E.B. White, Louis the trumpeter swan learns how to thrive despite being born without a trumpet
  • The Year of the Dog – Grace Lin

4th – 5th Grade Books

  • A Necessary End – Nathaniel Benchley, a realistic depiction of a young Navy recruit in World War II.
  • Across Five Aprils – Irene Hunt, a moving account of the effect of the Civil War on one family.
  • Alibi Junior High – Greg Logsted, an undercover CIA agent’s son goes to middle school.
  • And Then There Were None – Agatha Christie
  • Bat 6 – Virginia Euwer Wollf, a story of lingering feelings of guild, racism, and patriotism in two small Oregon towns after World War II.
  • Boy – Roald Dahl, a laugh-out-loud funny and serious memoir of Roald Dahl’s childhood that reveals his inspiration for some of his most infamous characters.
  • Cabin on Trouble Creek – Jean Van Leeuwen, a frontier survival tale of two brothers.
  • Children of the Covered Wagon – Mary Jane Carr, a 1934 tale about the old Oregon Trail.
  • Code Talker – Joseph Bruchac, based on a story of the Navajo Marines in World War II.
  • Cosmic – Frank Cottrell Boyce, a boy discovers the true meaning of what it takes to be a dad.
  • Gaudenzia, Pride of the Palio – Marguerite Henry, based on a true story of a courageous horse and his rider in the Palio race of Siena, Italy.
  • Holes – Louis Sachar, Stanley survives at a boy’s work camp in the desert while solving a family mystery.
  • Julie of the Wolves – Jean Craighead George, a survival tale set in Alaska.
  • Red Scarf Girl – Ji-Li Jiang, a touching and informative memoir of life in China during the Cultural Revolution.
  • Sword of the Samurai: Adventure Stories from Japan – Eric A. Kimmel, a collection of Samurai tales.
  • The Adventures of Tom Sawyer – Mark Twain, the 1876 boyhood classic.
  • The Ghost in the Tokaido Inn – Dorothy & Thomas Hoobler, the first book in a Samurai mystery series.
  • The Great Brain series – John D. Fitzgerald, a 1960’s series reminiscent of Tom Sawyer.
  • The Great Turkey Walk – Kathleen Kerr, a humorous tale of the Old West.
  • The Heart of a Chief – Joseph Bruchac, an 11-year-old American Indian boy learns what it takes to be a leader.
  • The Sea of Trolls – Nancy Farmer, a fantasy involving Vikings, berserkers and trolls.
  • The Tale of Despereaux – Kate DiCamillo, a story of mouse and human love and redemption.
  • Walk Across the Sea – Susan Fletcher, historical fiction of Chinese immigrants in California and a lighthouse keeper’s daughter.
  • War Horse – Michael Morpurgo, a World War I tale as told by an English farm horse.
  • When the Hermit Thrush Sings – Susan Butler, science fiction tale of escaping a repressive society.
  • Up Periscope – Rob Whte, based on a true story of a Navy frogman in World War II.
  • Young Mac of Fort Vancouver – Mary Jane Carr, A 1940 story of a 13-year-old at Fort Vancouver.

6th – 8th Grade Books

  • A Year Down Yonder – Richard Peck, forced to spend a year in the country with her Grandma, Mary Alice eventually becomes Grandma Dowdel’s partner in crime.
  • Al Capone Does My Shirts – Gennifer Choldenko, Moose and his family live on Alcatraz Island in the 1930s with his father who is a guard.
  • Bloomability – Sharon Creech, Dinnie learns to live on her own at a boarding school in Switzerland.
  • Bright Candles: A Novel of the Danish Resistance – Nathaniel Benchley, a well-researched and moving story of the Danish Resistance during World War II.
  • Cold Sassy Tree – Olive Ann Burns, a coming-of-age tale set in a turn-of-the-century Georgia town.
  • Coraline – Neil Gaiman, a creepy story of a girl who must find her parents in a parallel world.
  • Criss Cross – Lynn Rae Perkins
  • Ender’s Game – Orson Scott Card, an action-packed science fiction story of the future of the human race.
  • Fair Weather – Richard Peck, the story of the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair.
  • Flipped – Wendelin Van Drannen, see how the same story can be told from two perspectives.
  • Framed – Frank Cottrell Boyce, a boy working in his family’s mechanic shop in a smal town in England learns how to save his family and the town through famous art.
  • Going Solo – Roald Dahl, the second of Roald Dahl’s memoirs, this one about his stint as a fighter pilot in World War II.
  • Hoot – Carl Hiassen, Roy and his friends save burrowing owls from dishonest developers in Florida.
  • Joey Pigza Loses Control – Jack Gantos
  • Kensuke’s Kingdom – Michael Morpurgo, a tale of shipwreck and survival.
  • Millions – Frank Cottrell Boyc, Damien and his brother decide what to do with money that drops from the sky.
  • Petey – Ben Michaelson, Petey’s is institutionalized with cerebral palsey from boyhood to adulthood, and he makes connections with his aides over the years.
  • Private Peaceful – Michael Morpurgo, poignant story of two brothers in World War I.
  • Remember Me to Harold Square – Paula Danziger, teens go on a scavenger hunt in New York City.
  • Stargirl – Jerry Spinelli, what happens to a girl who dares to be different than everyone else in her school.
  • Story Time – Edward Bloor, social satire and black comedy about the perils of overemphasis of standardized testing in education today.
  • Tangerine – Edward Bloor, a story of how families, communities and the environment act under stress.
  • Time Stops for No Mouse – Michael Hoeye
  • The Boy and the Samurai – Erik Christian Haugaard, sequel to The Samurai’s Tale.
  • The House of the Scorpion – Nancy Farmer, futuristic story of cloning humans.
  • The Man in the Ceiling – Jules Feiffer, a funny and thought-provoking story of a boy who wants to be a cartoonist, by the illustrator of The Phantom Tollbooth.
  • The Once and Future King – T. H. White, the classic tale of King Arthur’s boyhood.
  • The Phantom Tollbooth – Norman Juster, a witty and highly imaginative fantasy.
  • The Samurai’s Tale – Erik Christian Haugaard, a riveting story of Samurai and feuding warlords in ancient Japan.
  • The White Deer – James Thurber, a charming James Thurber fairy tale.

9th – 12th Grade Books

  • A Matter of Profit – Hilari Bell
  • All But My Life: A Memoir – Gerda Weissmann Klein
  • I Am the Messenger – Markus Zusak, mysterious messages start appearing for 19-year-old Ed Kennedy after he foils a bank robbery.
  • Light Years – Tammar Stein, can 20-year-old Maya make a new life at college in the U.S. and forget the suicide bombing that killed her boyfriend in Israel?
  • The Adrian Mole Diaries – Sara Thompson
  • The Book Thief – Markus Zusak, a story about Leisl,the German people, and Death during World War II
  • The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini, a story about loyalty and courage set in Afghanistan and the U.S.
  • This Boy’s Life – Tobia Wolff, a memoir of Wolff’s boyhood.
  • West With the Night – Beryl Markham, a memoir of the aviatrix’s childhood in Africa, life as an elephant bush pilot, and being the first pilot to cross the Atlantic east to west.

5 Responses to Good Books for Boys

  1. Author Louis Sachar writes excellent books for boys.
    Especially, ‘Holes’ a 1999 Newbery Medal and
    1998 National Book Award for Young People’s Literature

    Also: There’s a Boy in the Girl’s Bathroom by Louis Sachar

  2. Triveni Moses says:

    I’m glad to have accidentally found this website, while I was stressing over finding a companion in the form of book and friends I could share my thoughts with. Hope to be get started soon with some of the books mentioned in this website.

  3. stufish7 says:

    My name is Stuart and I have just finished an e-book that is aimed at young boys, called “Answers to 350 Quirky Questions your kids will ask you one day”.

    I would love to have a few testimonials, so if you are interested and send me your email, I will send you a free copy of the book and ask, in return, that you send me a testimonial on the ebook.

    My email address is

    I look forward to hearing from some of you.

    Stuart Fish
    Sydney, Australia

  4. pragmaticmom says:

    I love your site! I am also obsessed with children’s literature. I blog about it at along with other parenting topics. want to link?

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