Give the gift of reading with a boxed set of chapter books. Once you can get kids hooked on a book series, it will keep them reading for hours, days, and weeks. These are chapter books series that are just too good to put down.
When should you give a boxed set of books? Holidays like Christmas or birthdays or anytime just for fun.
And to whom would you give a boxed set? Any child in your life. Boxed sets of books are great gifts for godkids, nieces or nephews, grandkids, or your own children.
You’re giving more than books. You’re giving kids and teens an opportunity; an opportunity to immerse themselves in stories and improve their reading skills.
Chapter Book Gift Sets for Ages 6 – 10
The Magic Treehouse by Mary Pope Osborne, ages 6 – 8
A must-read easy chapter book series for boys and girls that combines mystery, history, magic, and adventure. Siblings Jack and Annie travel in their magic tree house through time to solve mysteries. I highly recommend this series and if you get a chance, listen to them on audiobook, they’re narrated by Mary Pope Osborne herself.
A to Z Mysteries by Rob Roy, ages 7 – 9
This addictive (and wholesome) chapter book mystery series will keep your kids reading for days. My kids read the books more than once which to me is a sign of excellence! Friends Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose solve mysteries for every letter of the alphabet. We highly recommend this series, especially for second grade.
Bad Kitty by Nick Bruel, ages 7 – 10
In a word: hilarious. Kids think Bad Kitty is very naughty but, oh so funny. These books are addictive to read and fun to reread. Plus, they’re illustrated with only minimal text on every page. What are they about? Bad Kitty –a cat with an attitude — and all her misadventures.
Mercy Watson to the Rescue by Kate DiCamillo, ages 7 – 10
Mercy lives with Mr. and Mrs. Watson. They feed her buttered toast and take her for drives in their convertible. One night, Mercy gets scared and decides to sleep with Mr. and Mrs. Watson. Can you imagine what happens next? Hilarious and quirky, this is a fun series filled with many amazing adventures.
The Curious Cat Spy Club by Linda Joy Singleton, ages 7 – 11
Three kids from seemingly different social circles band together to rescue kittens they find in a dumpster, forming their own detective investigation group. Who could have dumped these innocent kittens? The answer, they find, will surprise everyone. Each book in this lovely, well-written mystery series is about three kind kids who solve mysteries together.
I Survived by Lauren Tarshis, ages 7 -11
Wow – these are addicting reads! They’re excellent, fast-paced adventures set during significant historical events that are perfect for elementary age kids just getting comfortable with chapter books. Kids will zip through these incredible adventures, learning history in the process. The books always are about a young person trying to survive a historically important, life-changing event such as Pompeii, the Titanic, Pearl Harbor, or the Battle of Gettysburg.
Ivy and Bean by Annie Barrows, illustrated by Sophie Blackall, ages 7 – 10
Get ready to laugh along with these charming young friends who won’t stop until they find the best way to solve their perplexing troubles, no matter how many ideas they must try.
Chapter Book Gift Sets for Ages 8 – 12
Land of Stories by Chris Colfer, ages 9 – 12
Fairy tales become very real when Alex and Conner (a brother and sister) find themselves taken to the fairy tale world through a book given to them by their grandmother. In the first story, their only way out of the Fairy Tale world is to find the ingredients for a Wishing Spell. Finding the items will be dangerous, mysterious,life-changing. The stories are non-stop adventures in magical, imaginative worlds. My kids couldn’t put these down. (Neither could I.)
Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life by James Patterson and Chris Tebbetts, illustrated by Laura Park, ages 9 – 12
Rafe’s goal in middle school is to break every single rule. You can imagine how his plan will go, right? Filled with cartoon-like illustrations, these worst years stories will crack your kids up.
The Last Kids on Earth by Max Brallier, illustrated by Douglas Holgate, ages 8 – 12
The Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney, ages 8 – 12
One of the most popular book series ever, The Diary of a Wimpy Kid, shares the hilarious story of Greg, in his own words and drawings. Life in middle school is not easy. And Greg is here to prove it! One thing you’ll notice about these books is that kids will read them more than once which is great if you have them all.
Percy Jackson and the Olympians by Rick Riordan, ages 8 – 12
This series is amazing! Greek gods still exist and so do their kids, half-bloods, or demigods, who have incredible abilities. Unfortunately for these kids, monsters are out to kill them. But, they are also the only ones who can save the world from a war between the Greek gods the Titans. Percy goes to Camp Half-Blood where he gets trained to protect himself… that is until he’s sent on a dangerous quest. Betrayal, adventure, plot twists, and incredible mythological world building make these stories that kids can’t put down.
Amulet by Kazu Kibuishi, ages 8 – 12
FANTASY / GRAPHIC NOVEL
This popular graphic novel series tells about two siblings trying to save their mom who was taken to an underground world of elves, demons, robots, and talking animals. Beautiful artwork with compelling characters and an adventurous plot make this a hit with readers.
The Doll People by Ann M. Martin & Laura Godwin, illustrated by Brian Selznick, ages 9 – 12
After discovering her missing aunt’s diary, Annabelle Doll can’t stop wondering about what happened to her aunt and is determined to find out — even at the risk of becoming “Permanent.” Will she leave the safety of her family’s dollhouse to find her aunt? Kids love this enthralling adventure of the dolls in a dollhouse that are real and do come to life when we’re not watching. (Just like you thought!)
Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling, ages 8 – 12
The best selling children’s book of all time, this is a MUST READ for so many reasons: the brilliant storytelling, a complex and entertaining plot, relatable characters, rich language, essential life lessons about friendship, magic, and bravery, and more. (See all my reasons for reading Harry Potter.) Harry Potter gets kids excited about reading, I can’t say enough good things about it!!
The Enchanted Forest Chronicles (Dealing with Dragons) by Patricia C. Wrede, ages 9 – 12
We read the first two books twice for a bedtime story in addition to the subsequent books in the series including the newly published FOURTH book, Talking To Dragons! You’ll love the strong female main character princess named Cimorene who doesn’t want to live the typical princess life. She leaves her home to apprentice herself to a dragon. Just for fun. No prince rescuing needed, thank you very much. In the first story, she must help save her dragon from a group of evil wizards. We LOVE and highly recommend this girl-power dragon series of chapter books.
Warriors by Erin Hunter, ages 9 – 12
Both my kids (and I) loved the Warriors series about a unique clan civilization of wild cats. It follows the story of a former house cat who joins ThunderClan. Not everyone accepts this former domestic cat. He’ll have to prove himself in order to help his clan fight the menacing ShadowClan.
The Ruins of Gorlan: Ranger’s Apprentice book 1 by John A. Flanagan, ages 9 – 13
Will is apprenticed to become a Ranger, a job he’s unsure about. But as he develops a relationship with his master and learns what being a Ranger is all about (spying for the kingdom,) and comes to embrace his new life. When an old enemy of the kingdom sends out dangerous beasts to attack Will’s master, Will is instrumental in getting help and killing the creatures. Action, fantasy, adventure, friendship, excellent writing — this book has it all! Ranger’s Apprentice is a must-read, mesmerizing epic fantasy.
Best Book Gift Sets for Teens
Steelheart (The Reckoners Series) by Brandon Sanderson, ages 13+
An epic can’t-put-down sci-fi adventure that is typical of Sanderson’s unique worlds with crazy plot twists and turns and non-stop action. In this world, the Epics are super-powerful individuals who have extraordinary powers, no goodness, and control the cities. David’s father was killed by Chicago’s Epic, Steelheart. Now David wants revenge so he joins the Reckoners to assassinate as many Epics as he can. But that’s only the beginning of this fight… (I couldn’t put this book series down!)
The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien, ages 13+
Epic fantasy stories weave together a world of magical creatures where evil is threatening the land. The writing is complex, detailed, and intense.
Cinder(Lunar Chronicles #1) by Marissa Meyer, ages 13+
This is a great series for tweens or teens who are transitioning from middle grade to YA books. When Prince Kai asks Cinder, a human with cyborg parts, to fix something for him, she becomes entangled in a plot which puts her life at risk and the entire country’s fate is hanging in the balance. And, it turns out she’s not who she thinks she is. This is an AMAZING can’t-put-it-down series based on the fairy tales like Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, and Red Riding Hood! And, every book is just as good as the previous book.
Legend by Marie Lu, ages 13+
DYSTOPIAN / ACTION / ROMANCE
This mesmerizing story pits a wealthy elite girl prodigy, June, against a slum-kid criminal named Day. June’s brother is supposedly murdered by Day so she decides to hunt him down. But, the truth is that the country is manipulating them both.
Rot and Ruin by Jonathan Mayberry, ages 13+
I didn’t even know what a zombie really was until I read this book. I wanted to give the zombie fiction a try. Surprisingly, I really loved it. Benny is required to become a zombie hunter but he has no choice. The author skillfully makes the zombies somewhat sympathetic –a difficult task to be sure. It’s an absolutely compelling story and hard to put down — don’t miss this series!
The Selection by Kiera Cass, ages 13+
Well-written and very popular, this book series for teens is about a selection process for the next princess. Many girls like this love triangle story filled with drama and political intrigue. I didn’t make it through all the books — only the first three — because this type of book isn’t my cup of tea but they’re a great choice for kids who like romance. The books I read make me think that the series doesn’t include sex in any of the books.
2018 Gift Guides:
Book Lists By Age
Easy Reader Books for 5- and 6- year olds
Beginning / Easy Chapter Books for 6- and 7- Year Olds
Books for 8-year olds
Books for 9-year olds
Books for 10-year olds
Books for 11-year olds
Books for 12-year olds
Book Lists By Genre
Adventure Books for Kids
Fantasy Books for Kids
Funny Books for Kids
Historical Fiction Books for Kids
Mystery Books for Kids
Nonfiction Books for Kids
Realistic Books for Kids
Science Fiction Books for Kids
ALL Picture Book Reviews
Download my "Can't Put 'Em Down" book lists for your kids ages 3 - 13.
Also, I'll send you a bonus "23 Reasons to Read" printable poster!