8th Grade

Recommended Reading List

Anderson, Janet.  The Last Treasure.   J AND

Ellsworth Smith belongs to a family of two – he and his dad, always on the move.

 

Atkinson, Linda.  In Kindling Flame.  J B SENESH

A biography of a Jewish heroine whose resistance work during World War II made her a martyr and an inspiration to those with whom she worked.

 

 Augarde, Steve.  The Various.  J AUG

While staying on her uncle’s farm, twelve-year-old Midge discovers she has a special connection to the Various, a tribe of fairies.

 

Avi.  Nothing But the Truth.  J AVI

A ninth-grader's suspension for singing "The Star-Spangled Banner" during homeroom becomes a national news story.

 

Bauer, Joan.  Best Foot Forward.  YA FIC BAUER

This book continues the story from Rules of the Road, about Jenna, Gladstone Shoes salesman extraordinaire, and her many personal and business challenges, who is now faced with unscrupulous business partners.

 

Bloor, Edward.  Tangerine.  YA FIC BLOOR

Twelve-year-old Paul’s family revolves around his football hero brother, failing to notice as Paul fights for the right to play soccer when disqualified by his bad eyesight.

 

Brashares, A.  Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.  J BRA

A pair of magical pants change the lives of four friends forever.

 

Brontë, Charlotte.  Jane Eyre.  J BRO

In early nineteenth-century England, an orphaned young woman accepts employment as a governess at Thornfield Hall, a country estate owned by the mysteriously remote Mr. Rochester.

 

 

Bruchac, Joseph.  Code Talker.  YA FIC BRUCHAC

At the age of six, Ned Begay must leave his Navajo home to learn English and later become a U.S. Marine during World War II.

 

Budhos, Marina.  Ask Me No Questions.  YA FIC BUDHOS

After September 11th, 2001, Nadira’s Bangladesh family members, living in New York City, become extremely anxious when their visas expire, leading to a series of actions and reactions that bring terror and sorrow.

 

Byng, Georgia.  Molly Moon’s Incredible Book of Hypnotism.  J BYN

Molly Moon is no ordinary orphan.  She discovers that she can make people do whatever she wants.

 

Cabot, Meg.  Princess in Pink.  J CAB

Mia is the newest staffer on the school paper, and the completion of freshman algebra is just around the corner.  Plus, she is about to get a new baby brother or sister.

 

Cabot, Meg.  All-American Girl.  YA FIC CABOT

Sophomore Samantha Madison stops a presidential assassination attempt, is appointed teen ambassador to the United Nations, and catches the eye of the very cute First Son.

 

Cadnum, Michael.  Ship of Fire.  YA FIC CADNUM

In 1587, sailing to Spain onboard Sir Francis Drake’s ship “Elizabeth Bonaventure,” seventeen-year-old surgeon’s apprentice Thomas Spyre finds that, with the sudden death of his master, he must take over as ship’s surgeon and prove his skill not only as a doctor but also as a fighter when he is enlisted by Drake to face battle.

 

Carmody, Isobelle.  The Gathering.  J CAR

When fifteen-year-old Nathanial moves to a sinister town that has been bruised by an ancient evil, he finds himself one of those Chosen to fight the cycle of darkness.

 

Cheng, Andrea.  Anna the Bookbinder.  J CHE

New large binderies are stealing Anna’s father’s business as they can bind books faster.

 

Choi, Sook Nyul.  Year of Impossible Goodbyes.  J CHO

A young Korean girl survives the oppressive Japanese and Russian occupation of North Korea during the 1940s, to later escape to freedom in South Korea.

 

Cooney, Caroline.  Code Orange.  YA FIC COONEY

While conducting research for a school paper on smallpox, Mitty finds an envelope containing 100-year-old smallpox scabs and becomes the target of terrorists intent on starting a modern-day plague.

 

Corder, Zizou.  Lion Boy.  J COR

What do you do when you come home one day and discover your parents have been kidnapped?

 

Cormier, Robert.  I Am the Cheese.  J COR

A young boy desperately tries to unlock his past yet knows he must hide those memories if he is to remain alive.

 

Cormier, Robert.  In the Middle of the Night.  J COR

22 children were killed in an accident at the movie theater where 16-year-old Denny’s then-teenage father worked.  Publicly blamed although legally exonerated, Denny's father still receives hate mail and threatening calls; as the 25th anniversary of the accident nears, Denny's parents step up their efforts to avoid reporters and curious strangers.  But the seductive voice of an anonymous phone caller lures Denny out of isolation. Denny enters into a dangerous game of cat and mouse, eventually landing in a situation as horrific as the one his father experienced years ago.

 

Crane, Stephen.  The Red Badge of Courage.  J CRA PBK

Through the eyes of Union soldier Henry Fleming, we follow his psychological turmoil, from the excitement of patriotism to the bloody realities of battle and his flight from it.  In the end, he overcomes his fear and disillusionment, and fights with courage.

 

Crossley-Holland, Kevin.  The Seeing Stone.  YA FIC CROSSLEY-HOLLAND

During the late twelfth century, thirteen-year-old Arthur enjoys looking at the legendary King Arthur through his seeing stone, a gift from Merlin, and notices the parallels with his own life.

 

Crutcher, Chris.  Athletic Shorts.  J CRU

The stereotype of jocks as insensitive dullards is challenged in six stories that grapple with the big questions of life as well as with athletic prowess, told with good-natured aplomb and gritty honesty.

 

Deuker, Carl.  High Heat.  YA FIC DEUKER

When sophomore Shane Hunter’s father is arrested for money laundering at his Lexus dealership, the star pitcher’s life of affluence and private schools begins to fall apart.

 

Ehrlich, Amy.  Where It Stops Nobody Knows.  YA FIC EHRLICH

Nina and her mother move from place to place, never revealing anything of themselves, and causing Nina to wonder if they will ever stop hiding.

 

Farmer, Nancy.  The Ear, The Eye, and the Arm.  J FAR

In 2194 in Zimbabwe, General Matsika's three children are kidnapped and put to work in a plastic mine while three mutant detectives use their special powers to search for them.

 

Ferry, Charles.  Raspberry One.  J FER

Nick and Hildy, two young aircrewmen flying bombing support against Japan's kamikaze offensive in the Pacific, are devastated but ultimately strengthened by their war experience.

 

Flake, Sharon G.  The Skin I’m In.  J FLA

Thirteen-year-old Maleeka, uncomfortable because her skin is extremely dark, meets a new teacher with a birthmark on her face and makes some discoveries about how to love who she is and what she looks like.

 

Foon, Dennis.  The Dirt Eaters.  J FOO

When Roan’s parents and people of Longligh perish in a raid, Roan is torn between a desire for revenge and the pledge to peace.

 

Funke, Cornelia.  The Thief Lord.  J FUN

Welcome to the magical underworld of Venice, Italy, where hidden canals and crumbling rooftops shelter runaways and children.

 

Gunther, John.  Death Be Not Proud. J B GUNTHER

Johnny Gunther was only seventeen years old when he died of a brain tumor. During the months of his illness, everyone near him was unforgettably impressed by his level-headed courage, his wit and quiet friendliness, and, above all, his unfaltering patience through times of despair.

 

Hiaasen, Carl.  Hoot.  J HIA

Roy, who is new to his small Florida community, becomes involved in another boy’s attempt to save a colony of burrowing owls.

 

Hobbs, Will.  Wild Man Island.  YA FIC HOBBS

After fourteen-year-old Andy slips away from his kayaking group to visit the wilderness site of his archaeologist father’s death, a storm strands him on Admiralty Island, Alaska, where he manages to survive, encounters unexpected animal and human inhabitants, and looks for traces of the earliest prehistoric immigrants to America.

 

Jacques, Brian.  Triss.  J JAC

Triss, Shogg, and Welfo escape from slavery at Riftgard and are pursued across the sea toward Redwall by Princess Kurdah, Prince Bladd, and a band of freebooters who seek the rumored treasure of Brockhall.

 

Lawrence, Iain.  B Is For Buster.  YA FIC LAWRENCE

Sixteen-year-old Kak, escaping his tyrannical parents, lies about his age, enlists in the Canadian Royal Air Force, and soon finds himself based in England flying bombing raids over Germany.

 

Le Guin, Ursula.  The Wizard of Earthsea.  YA FIC LE GUIN

After pride causes him to unleash a demon, Zed is compelled to chase or escape from the ever-pursuing shadow.

 

L’Engle, Madeleine.  A Swiftly Tilting Planet.  J LEN

Charles Wallace must travel through time to save the world by battling an evil dictator.

 

McKinley, Robin.  Spindle’s End.  YA FIC McKINLEY

The infant princess Briar Rose is cursed on her name day by Pernicia, an evil fairy, and then whisked away by a young fairy to be raised in a remote part of a magical country, unaware of her real identity and hidded from Pernicia’s vengeful powers.

 

Namioka, Lensey.  Ties That Bind, Ties That Break.  YA FIC NAMIOKA

Ailin, rebelling against the ancient Chinese tradition of binding girls’ feet, loses her family’s support and makes a new life in the United States.

 

Peck, Richard.  The River Between Us.  YA FIC PECK

During the early days of the Civil War, the Pruitt family takes in two mysterious young ladies who have fled New Orleans to come north to Illinois.

 

Rawlings, Marjorie.  The Yearling.  J RAW

A young boy living in the Florida backwoods is forced to decide the fate of a fawn he has lovingly raised as a pet.

 

Rees, Celia.  Sorceress.  YA FIC REES

Eighteen-year-old Agnes, a Mohawk Indian descended from a line of shamanic healers, uses her own newly-discovered powers to uncover the story of her ancestor, a seventeenth-century English healer who fled charges of witchcraft in New England.

 

Spinner, Stephanie.  Quiver.  YA FIC SPINNER

Atalanta, abandoned as an infant, has grown to become a renowned archer and the swiftest mortal alive due to the intervention of Artemis, goddess of the hunt, so when the father who forsook her so many years before issues an ultimatum that Atalanta marry and produce an heir, she counters with the condition that the man she weds must be able to beat her in a footrace or die.

 

Strieber, Whitley.  Wolf of Shadows.  J STR

In the terrible aftermath of a nuclear holocaust, a wolf and a human woman form a mysterious bond that brings each close to the spirits of the shattered earth.

 

Thomas, Ruth.  The Runaways.  J THO

Having found an enormous sum of money and been threatened with punishment by their parents for not turning it in to the police, gawky eleven-year-old Julia and her bad-tempered friend Nathan flee London for Brighton and the open countryside.

 

Trueman, Terry.  Stuck in Neutral.  YA FIC TRUEMAN

Fourteen-year-old Shawn McDaniel, who suffers from severe cerebral palsy and cannot function, relates his perceptions of his life, his family, and his condition, especially as he believes his father is planning to kill him.

 

Vande Velde, Vivian.  Heir Apparent.  YA FIC VANDE VELDE

In a futuristic setting, a girl is involved playing a “total immersion” video game in which her mind is integrated with the game.  What she soon discovers is that the game is broken, and she can withdraw her mind and survive only if she wins.

 

Verne, Jules.  20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.  J VER

This nineteenth-century science fiction tale of an electric submarine, its eccentric captain, and an undersea world anticipated many of the scientific achievements of the twentieth century.

 

Woodson, Jacqueline.  Hush.  YA FIC WOODSON

Twelve-year-old Toswiah finds her life radically changed when her family must enter the witness protection program.

 

Zindel, Paul.  The Pigman and Me.  J B ZINDEL

An account of Paul Zindel's teenage years on Staten Island, when his life was enriched by finding his own personal pigman, or mentor.

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