Year 8 (ages 12-13) Suggested Reading List

Each book in the reading list is allocated a number – 1 being an easy read and rising to 3, which is a more difficult read. There are a couple of 4’s for those who want to be stretched further. Please note that there are comments about the type of content as some books require a level of maturity from the reader and a couple are actually recommended for age 14+ on the website. The aim is to try and read from a variety of different genres and build on the level of difficulty as you progress.

Two Weeks with the Queen by Morris Gleitzman (1) amusingly written but tough subjects of cancer and AIDS

Divergent by Veronica Roth (1) dystopian future, exciting, gripping, fun

Bodyguard: Hostage by Chris Bradford (1) teenage bodyguards are in demand to help protect the young and famous

Gone by Michael Grant (1) all humans over the age of 16 disappear leaving children in charge

An Act of Love by Alan Gibbons (1) two boys, once close friends but now enemies – one in the army and the other drawn to fundamentalism

Wonder by R J Palacio (1) a straightforward read – coping with disability, learning to be kind

Malarkey by Keith Gray (1) fast paced, excitement, not too long – who actually runs the school: the teachers or the students?

Girl, Missing by Sophie McKenzie (1) what would you do if you thought you were the young girl on a missing persons’ website?

Split Second by Sophie McKenzie (1) a dystopian world where extremists plant bombs ad teenagers get caught up in the terror

A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness (1) – understanding the emotions you feel when a loved one is dying

Picture me Gone by Meg Rosoff (1) grown-ups don’t always know what they are doing and they don’t always tell the truth

She Is Not Invisible by Marcus Sedgwick (1) an adventure story with an interesting twist

The Outsiders by S E Hinton (2) gangs and adventure, but thought provoking too

Close Your Pretty Eyes by Sally Nicholls (2) moving foster homes is hard especially when you are emotionally damaged

The Bell Between the Worlds by Ian Johnstone (2) Sylas enters a parallel world and finds himself drawn into a fight for freedom

My Sister Lives on the Mantlepiece by Annabel Pitcher (2) easy to read, amusingly written but sad and thought provoking too

Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman (2) what if white people were the underclass? How might racism ruin lives?

Heroic by Phil Earle (2) beautifully written, thought provoking, strongly recommend

Out of Shadows by Jason Wallace (2) Zimbabwe not long after Mugabe came to power – what was the effect on the population?

The Double Life of Cassiel Roadnight by Jenny Valentine (2) a stolen identity and family secrets

You Don’t Know Me by David Klass (2) a difficult home life and struggles at school

The Diaries of Bluebell Gadsby: After iris by Natasha Farrant (2) a dysfunctional family copes with the loss of a child

When the Guns Fall Silent by James Riordan (2) the trenches of WW1 brought to life

The Weight of Water by Sarah Crossan (2) written in verse, settling into a new country, bullying

(Un)Arranged Marriage by Bali Rai (2) a Sikh teenage boy is under to pressure to enter into an arranged marriage at seventeen

Say Her Name by James Dawson (2) not a hard read but very scary

Lottie Biggs is (Not) Mad by Hayley Long (2) funny, ammusing and heart wrenching

Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys (3) an interesting and little known period in history, adventure, love, sadness

Torn by David Massey (3) the war in Afghanistan through the eyes of a young, female, army medic – mystery and trauma and a smattering of romance

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein (3) a captured SOE spy in WW2. Is she really betraying her friends?

Bog Child by Siobahn Dowd (3) set during the IRA hunger strikes, learn about this difficult part of Great Britain’s history

Maggot Moon by Sally Gardner (3) written in an engaging tone, an unusual tale of a controlling society and a questionable moon landing

Ostrich Boys by Keith Gray (3) a group of boys struggle with the death of a friend

Blood Red Road by Moira Young (3) a dystopian future, exciting and adventurous, written in an unusual English style

Raven Boys by Maggie Steifvater (3) fantasy

The Seeing by Diane Hendry (3) post WW2, are there still Nazis in hiding? Can the little boy really see truth? Is exciting just plain dangerous?

The Reluctant Journal of Henry K Larsen by Susin Nielsen (3) Henry’s brother was bullied and he did something stupid and Henry is paying the price

Noble Conflict by Malorie Blackman (3) Kas has always believed that the was he is fighting is in a noble cause – but is it?

Tamar by Mal Peet (4) betrayal, love and jealousy, WW2, spies (please note recommended age is 14 on the website)

Cloud Busting by Malorie Blackman (4) written in verse, bullying, friendship

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