Recommended Titles

Books make it onto the recommended titles list in several ways:

  • I read a book with one of my book clubs then write a review about the basic plot and topics that came up for discussion.
  • I review a book outside of my book club, again emphasizing basic plot and topics that may come up in a book club discussion.
  • Other readers and members of mother-daughter book clubs send in their lists of recommended books along with reviews.

Also, most of the books I review must be widely available in libraries so mother-daughter book club members can borrow them or buy them. If you are looking for a review of a specific title, you can use the search feature on this blog to see if there’s an entry. You can also check out the list of reviews on! You’ll find some listed there that are not on this blog and vice versa. If you would like to purchase any of these books, here’s a link to Powell’s main store in Portland is the world’s largest bookstore, and shopping there online is the next best thing to being there.

Books to Make You Laugh Out Loud

  • A Long Way from Chicago – Richard Peck
  • A Year Down Yonder – Richard Peck
  • Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging – Louise Rennison
  • Bloomability – Sharon Creech
  • Boy – Roald Dahl
  • Flipped – Wendelin Van Draanen
  • Framed – Frank Cottrell Boyce

Recommended by Grade

2nd – 3rd Grade Books

  • Afternoon of the Elves – Janet Taylor Lisle
  • Premlata and the Festival of Lights – Rumer Godden
  • The Hundred Dresses – Eleanor Estes
  • The Real Thief – William Steig
  • The Secret School – Avi
  • The Trumpet of the Swan – E.B. White
  • The Year of Miss Agnes – Kirkpatrick Hill
  • The Year of the Dog – Grace Lin

4th – 5th Grade Books

  • And Then There Were None – Agatha Christie
  • Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl – Anne Frank
  • Bat 6 – Virginia Euwer Wollf
  • Becoming Naomi Leon – Pam Munoz Ryan
  • Boston Jane – Jennifer Holm
  • Boy – Roald Dahl
  • Caddie Woodlawn – Carol Ryrie Brink
  • Dealing with Dragons – Patricia Wrede
  • Ella Enchanted – Gail Carson Levine
  • Ginger Pye – Eleanor Estes
  • Granny Torrelli Makes Soup – Sharon Creech
  • Jacob Have I Loved – Katherine Paterson
  • Julie of the Wolves – Jean Craighead George
  • Nancy Drew Mysteries – Carolyn Keene
  • Our Only May Amelia – Jennifer Holm
  • Red Scarf Girl – Ji-Li Jiang
  • Stargirl – Jerry Spinelli
  • The Great Good Thing – Rod Townley
  • The Heart of a Chief – Joseph Bruchac
  • The Mother-Daughter Book Club – Heather Vogel Frederick Read Interview!
  • The Tale of Despereaux – Kate DiCamillo
  • Walk Across the Sea – Susan Fletcher
  • When the Hermit Thrush Sings – Susan Butler

6th – 8th Grade Books

  • A Year Down Yonder – Richard Peck
  • A Step from Heaven – An Na
  • Al Capone Does My Shirts – Gennifer Choldenko Read Interview!
  • Angus, Thongs and Full Frontal Snogging – Louise Rennison
  • Bloomability – Sharon Creech
  • Confessions of a Closet Catholic – Sarah Darer Littman
  • Coraline – Neil Gaiman
  • Criss Cross – Lynn Rae Perkins
  • Down the Rabbit Hole – Peter Abrahams
  • Everything on a Waffle – Polly Horvath
  • Fair Weather – Richard Peck
  • Flipped – Wendelin Van Draanen
  • Framed – Frank Cottrell Boyce Read interview!
  • Goddesses: Heaven Sent – Clea Hantman
  • Going Solo – Roald Dahl
  • Hattie Big Sky – Kirby Larson Read Interview!
  • Holding Up the Earth – Dianne Gray
  • Hoot – Carl Hiassen
  • Island of the Aunts – Eva Ibbotson
  • Joey Pigza Loses Control – Jack Gantos
  • Kira-Kira – Cynthia Kadohata
  • Mates, Dates and Inflatable Bras – Cathy Hopkins
  • Millions – Frank Cottrell Boyce Read Interview!
  • Missing Persons: The Rose Queen – M.E. Rabb
  • P. S. Longer Letter Later – Paula Danziger and Ann M. Martin
  • Petey – Ben Michaelson
  • Remember Me to Harold Square – Paula Danziger
  • Sold – Patricia McCormick Read Interview!
  • Story Time – Edward Bloor
  • Tangerine – Edward Bloor
  • Time Stops for No Mouse – Michael Hoeye
  • The House of the Scorpion – Nancy Farmer
  • The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles – Julie Andrews Edwards
  • The Not So Star-Spangled Life of Sunita Sen – Mitali Perkins
  • The Princess Diaries – Meg Cabot
  • The Second Summer of the Sisterhood – Ann Brashares
  • The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett
  • The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle – Avi
  • The Undertaker’s Gone Bananas – Paul Zindel
  • Zlata’s Diary – Zlata Fillipovic Read Interview!

9th – 12th Grade Books

  • A Certain Slant of Light – Laura Whitcomb Read Interview!
  • A Matter of Profit – Hilari Bell
  • Biting the Moon – Martha Grimes
  • Drivers Ed – Caroline B. Cooney
  • Girls for Breakfast – Jimmy Woo
  • Girlwood – Claire Dean
  • Hope Was Here – Joan Bauer
  • I Am the Messenger – Markus Zusak Read Interview!
  • In the Time of the Butterflies – Julia Alvarez
  • Keeping the Moon – Sarah Dessen
  • Light Years – Tammar Stein
  • Ready or Not – Meg Cabot
  • Search of the Moon King’s Daughter – Linda Holeman
  • Songs for a Teenage Nomad – Kim Culbertson
  • Speak – Laurie Halse Anderson
  • The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian – Sherman Alexie
  • The Adoration of Jenna Fox – Mary E. Pearson Read Interview!
  • The Adrian Mole Diaries – Sara Thompson
  • The Book Thief – Markus Zusak Read Interview!
  • The First Part Last – Angela Johnson
  • The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
  • The Life of Pi – Yann Martel
  • The Pearl – John Steinbeck
  • The Secret Life of Bees – Sue Monk Kidd
  • West With the Night – Beryl Markham

Historical Fiction

4th – 5th Grade Readers

  • Bat 6 – Virginia Euwer Wollf
  • Boston Jane – Jennifer Holm
  • Ginger Pye – Eleanor Estes
  • Jacob Have I Loved – Katherine Paterson
  • Our Only May Amelia – Jennifer Holm
  • Walk Across the Sea – Susan Fletcher
  • Caddie Woodlawn – Carol Ryrie Brink

5th – 8th Grade Readers

  • A Year Down Yonder – Richard Peck
  • A Long Way from Chicago – Richard Peck
  • Fair Weather – Richard Peck
  • Here Lies the Librarian – Richard Peck
  • Kira-Kira – Cynthia Kadohata
  • Petey – Ben Michaelson
  • The Teacher’s Funeral – Richard Peck
  • The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle – Avi

9th – 12th Grade Readers

  • A Lesson Before Dying – Ernest J. Gaines
  • In the Time of the Butterflies – Julia Alvarez
  • Night – Elie Wiesel
  • The Crucible – Arthur Miller
  • The Hearts of Horses – Molly Gloss
  • The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
  • The River Between Us – Richard Peck
  • The Secret Life of Bees – Sue Monk Kidd
  • To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
  • Wild Life – Molly Gloss

13 Responses to Recommended Titles

  1. Victoria -14 yrs says:

    Weedflower is an excellent historical fiction book written by Cynthia Kadohata. Its story takes place during WWII when the Japanese were sent to concentration camps around the country. I’ve read this book I think at least 3 times. It’s like a Japanese holocaust.
    I highly recommend it!!

  2. Jordan says:

    I read The Pearl, by John Steinbeck and loved it!!!! It’s a very short piece of writing but still has all of the major elements of a novel. It was really good, though maybe a bit predictable. I recommend it.

  3. Lisa S. says:

    You might consider C. Leigh Purtill’s Books Love, Meg and All About Vee. She is one of my favorite authors and her work is perfect for a mother daughter book club…

    Wonderful site you have.

  4. Barbara says:

    I need some book club ideas for our 3rd graders who are reading The Boxcar Children. Anything would be helpful…recipies, craft ideas, games, fun stuff, questions.


  5. Cindy Hudson says:

    The Wizard of Oz is a good book for younger children. There’s a whole series that starts with the original book by L. Frank Baum. You’ll also be surprised by how the book differs from the movie, which you can watch with your daughters too.

    There are also some suggestions at the Web site, on the Ideas page. Just click on activities to find those.

    Some other books to think about:
    Piper Reed by Kimberly Willis Holt
    A Pizza the Size of the Sun (poetry) by Jack Prelutsky (you can also write your own poetry when you read this very funny collection of poems that makes poetry accessible for kids)
    Charlotte Web by E.B White

  6. Barbara says:

    I’m sorry…guess I wasn’t clear in my first comment. We are meeting on 9/14 to discuss The Boxcar Children so I don’t have the option of switching titles at this point. Does anyone have any good idea for crafts or things for the girls to do, when we meet (that align with The Boxcar Children)? We’ll run through our list of questions (what’s your favorite part of the book, favorite character, etc) but we usually have an activity…any ideas for that?

  7. Maranda says:

    I read a lot of the books on this list and I really enjoyed all of them.

  8. Hello.

    I am the author of three novels that I believe will be of interest to your readers. SOLOMON THE ACCOUNTANT is a gentle love story set in a middle-class Jewish neighborhood in 1950. It is absolutely PG rated. HERE ON MOON is a story about a woman who is suddenly confronted with divorce, tries to save the marriage but fails, and enters the world of single-again dating and becomes the single parent of a teenage girl. It contains references to adultery but no graphic sex or violence, and would be suitable for mother/daughter book clubs for older teenage daughters. Finally, A STORY OF BAD is a murder mystery (again, no graphic violence) which contains a love story woven through the investigation of the murder.

    You may wish to visit a page that contains excerpts and reviews:

    An author’s interview is at

    Thank you.

    Edward M. Krauss

  9. vivian tate says:




  10. vivian tate says:



  11. TAMMI says:


  12. emily zinger says:

    in my life i have read many books and i think that those books up there are great but i have other recommendations like all the books by sharon creech

  13. I just needed to say that I found your site via Goolge and I am glad I did. Keep up the good work and I will make sure to bookmark you for when I have more free time away from the books. Thanks again!

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