It’s always hard to pick the best books for any age, but I want to share the top ten middle grade books for 5th grade boys that I recommend when they need something to read.
Because the most important thing is getting kids to read– so, we need to offer the best books to our 5th grade boys; books that look and sound interesting…and that actually are excellent. This is the key!
Of course, there are so many more good books for 5th grade boys. Visit all my reviews for 5th graders and keep your readers reading!
Best Books for 5th Grade Boys
New Kid by Jerry Craft
This middle grade graphic novel for 5th grade boys is the Newbery award winning book for 2020! Jordan’s parents make him go to a private school across town where he’s one of the only kids of color. Besides having the tricky business of navigating friendships, he now must deal with the two separate worlds of his neighborhood and his school along with racism and balancing academics with his artwork. This story feels truthful, relatable, and important for 5th graders.
City Spies by James Ponti
When Sara, a foster kid and hacker, gets in trouble again, her new so-called lawyer recruits her to be an MI6 spy. Sara joins a team of other kids, trains quickly, and is immediately sent undercover to break open a big case in Paris. I don’t want to spoil anything, but I predict you’ll love every second of this action-packed story! It’s filled with great characters and an interesting twisty plot. 5th grade boys won’t be able to put this series down.
Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life by James Patterson and Chris Tebbetts, illustrated by Laura Park
Rafe’s goal in middle school is to break every single rule. You can imagine how his plan will go, right? A funny middle grade book filled with cartoon-like illustrations, this story will crack your 5th graders up. BOX SET HERE.
Explorer Academy: The Nebula Secret by Trudi Trueit
This is National Geographic’s first fictional book series with full-color illustrations that hits the spot with an exciting mix of science, technology, adventure, and mystery. Newly accepted into the prestigious Explorer Academy for science and exploration, Cruz realizes that someone is trying to kill him; someone who doesn’t want him finding out about his mother’s mysterious research and untimely death. You’ll love the cool tech, amazing friendships, plot twists, and the intriguing premise.
Refugee by Alan Gratz
This book is a tween must-read middle grade book about what refugees experience. Follow three distinct stories about being displaced from your country, on the run, and in danger. First is a young Jewish boy who escapes from Nazi Germany on a ship to Cuba. Next is a Cuban girl in the 1990s who flees in a homemade raft to the United States. Finally, is a story about a Syrian boy whose home is bombed in a country at war. Gatz skillfully connects all three stories with a satisfying, realistic conclusion.
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
MIDDLE GRADE FANTASY
Bod lives in the graveyard with an assortment of ghosts and other cemetery creatures who raise him after Bod’s parents are killed when Bod was a baby. Bod’s guardian Silas cares for him, feeds him, and teaches him about the human world. Despite the scary-sounding title, the scariest part is in the first chapter when Bod’s parents get murdered and I suspect most 5th graders can handle or skip over that part.
The Adventurers Guild by Zach Loran Clark and Nick Eliopulos
Get ready for your new favorite fantasy adventure series. Zed and Brock don’t want to be chosen for the Adventurers Guild. Nobody does. Unlike the mages or merchants guild, the adventurers must leave the safety of their walled city to fight the monsters who live on the outside. Unfortunately, Zed and Brock are picked as Adventurers. And before they can finish training, Zed, Brock, and others are sent outside the city on a fact-finding mission that uncovers treachery, fiendish beasts, and Zed’s untapped magic. Imaginative world-building, intriguing plot twists, and complex characters kept me enthralled from page one!
Isaiah Dunn is My Hero by Kelly J. Baptist
After Isaiah’s dad dies, his mother stops working and starts drinking too much. The family of three now lives in a smokey motel where Isaiah watches his 4-year-old sister when his mom is passed out. Isaiah finds strength and inspiration in his father’s journaled stories about Isaiah Dunn Superhero and eventually, he begins to write poems again in his own journal. With themes of grief, family, poverty, poetry, the power of writing, and friendship — this is a beautiful middle grade book.
The Unforgettable Logan Foster by Shawn Peters
Logan is a neurodivergent, orphan main character who is fostered out of the orphanage by a friendly new couple, Gil and Margie. Then, Logan and his neighbor, a super cool older girl named Elena, discover that his foster parents are actually superheroes who get double-crossed and captured by an evil villain. In an exciting, fast-paced adventure, Logan and Elena use their wits and strength to save his foster parents and other supes from the villains and the traitor.