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9 of the Best 7th Grade Books

Check out these best books for 7th grade. Get students reading with these engaging book recommendations from 2 Peas and a Dog. #bookreviews #YAlit #reading #middleschool


Finding appropriate 7th grade books can be a challenge. I find my readers are either still very much in a 6th Grade mindset or ready for YA lit. Finding this balance in books for my classroom can be difficult. Linked below are ten great reads to add to your recommended 7th grade books list. Some of these books have been made into movies, which is always a bonus!

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9 of the Best 7th Grade Books

Fish in a Tree by Lynda Mullaly Hunt (Realistic Fiction)

Ally Nickerson is a fabulous and relatable protagonist that middle school students will enjoy getting to know. As soon as the reader opens the book they are thrown into the middle of Ally’s story and her trouble at school. She immediately gets sent to the principal’s office and we get a glimpse into Ally’s academic struggles. Ally’s school difficulties throughout the novel, help students build empathy towards Ally.

Freak the Mighty by Rodman Philbrick (Realistic Fiction)

Kevin and Max meet for the very first time in daycare. Kevin has to wear leg braces while Max has other learning difficulties, both of these boys form a powerful friendship. Together their friendship helps them tackle the challenges they face. 

The Giver by Lois Lowry (Science Fiction)

“The Giver” is written from the point of view of a 12 year old, living in a dystopian world. Where there is no pain, fear, war and as well as hatred. At the age of 12, every community member is assigned a job based on their abilities and interests. Read how Jonas faces his new role in society with all of the responsibilities and challenges that come his role. 

A Long Walk to Water by Linda Sue Park (Historical/Realistic Fiction)

Set in Sudan during the Civil War of the 1980’s, this book will immediately capture your student’s attention as the story begins with Salva’s school being attacked. Him and his classmates flee for their lives in what will start a journey through desert to find safety and shelter. This story about one of the Lost Boys of Sudan is inspired by true events told by two narrators Salva in the past fleeing the violence in his country and Nya in the present walking several hours a day to fetch water for her family.


Refugee by Alan Gratz (Historical/Realistic Fiction)

Three young people leave their homes in Berlin, Cuba and Syria to seek refuge from the unsettling events taking place in the countries they call home. Each of these stories take places during different time periods 1938 Berlin, 1994 Cuba, and 2015 Syria, but all three face eminent dangers throughout their lives and journeys. Though each of them are separated by different years and countries the common theme of survival and a better life join them together.

Peak by Roland Smith (Realistic Fiction)

Fourteen year old Peak Marcello is in major trouble for climbing a skyscraper in New York City. He is given two options spend time in juvie or go live with his estranged father in Thailand. Given these options he chooses Thailand – but his selection comes with some conditions. His father wants his son to be the youngest person to climb Mount Everest. Peak must overcome obstacles if he is going to achieve this goal.

Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli (Realistic Fiction)

When a new girl arrives at Mica High, she becomes the centre of attention. Her school spirit, good looks and charming personality at a hit with her peers, until one day they turn on her.  She becomes hated by her peers for being herself. Stargirl is faced with the decision to remain true to her self or conforming to the status quo.

Schooled by Gordon Korman (Realistic/Humour Fiction)

Cap has been home schooled his entire life. He has lived on a commune his entire life with his grandmother. When his grandmother falls out of a tree and can no longer care for Cap, he must go and live with a new guardian and attend the local school. Things do not go as smoothly as Cap had hoped at his new school. This reality is much different than the one he shared with his grandmother.

Touching Spirit Bear by Ben Mikaelsen (Adventure/Survival)

After injuring another person, Cole Matthews is sent to the remote Alaskan island program called Circle Justice. This program is based on Indigenous healing and justice principles. While in the Alaskan wilderness, Cole is attacked by a bear and left stranded. While he waits for help or death his thoughts begin to wander towards making amends for his actions.

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12 Genre Book Reports Assignment


Love teaching with genres?

Help your students dive deeper into their reading with these 12 different genre-focused book report assignments. Each assignment enables students to showcase their creativity while meeting curriculum standards. This assignment covers both fiction and non-fiction books. The assignment structure rotates every three months helping students achieve proficiency, while still providing student choice. Assignments can be used in any order. A sample teaching schedule is provided.

Included Genres

  • Realistic Fiction
  • Mystery Fiction
  • Graphic Novel
  • Science Fiction
  • Biography & Memoirs
  • Historical Fiction
  • Classical Fiction (pre-1970)
  • Fantasy Fiction
  • Non-Fiction
  • Traditional Literature vs. Fractured Fairy Tales
  • Sports Fiction
  • Free Verse Fiction

Assignment Types:

  1. Written Response – critical thinking and written reflection assignment.
  2. Creative Choice Board – students are provided with 3 options and must select which creative option they want to produce.
  3. Oral Presentation – a book talk format assignment.
  4. Student-Created Lesson based on a non-fiction book
  5. Traditional Literature vs. Fractured Fairy Tales Comparison Assignment

Find the 12 Genres Book Reports resource on Shopify CAD or Teachers Pay Teachers USD.

For more great middle school books, check out this blog post – Best Middle School Book Recommendations. Also, check out some fantastic YA books in this blog post – High School Book Recommendations.

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