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Summer Reading – Great Middle Reader Books to Add to Your Summer Shelf

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Greetings!  It really feels like summer now. The weather has warmed up and we are beginning to enjoy more outside activities.

This also means that school has ended and the concerns of “summer reading slide” have started.

Scholastic has an excellent report called 10 Critical Facts about Summer Reading that addresses the issue of learning or reading skill losses during the summer months are cumulative, creating a wider gap each year between more proficient and less proficient students. By the time a struggling reader reaches middle school, summer reading loss has accumulated to a two–year lag in reading achievement.

We’ve found that the best way to motivate your reader in the summer is to know what inspires them!

Making reading an adventure and not a “task, chore, requirement” during the summer months is a great way to help the desire to read and getting them loving the written word.

Make book reading like a seasonal shift in your wardrobe. One of our first family activities, when school gets out, is to make The Summer Shelf. Off come the passing season’s books and on comes the fun books of summer. Some are old friends and others are new, but The Summer Shelf is a way to herald in the summer reading season.

Great Middle Reader Book to Add to Your Summer Reading Shelf

Great Middle Reader Book to Add to Your Summer Reading

Willa of the Wood by Robert Beatty

Willa of the Wood

Willa, a young night-spirit forest girl, is her clan’s best thief. Move without a sound. Steal without a trace. Its the mantra her people live by.

Her people are the Faeran, ancient forest dwellers who once lived in harmony with the woods and the Great Smoky Mountains but now struggle to survive in an uncertain world.  Once a wise and powerful people, the Faeran have been pushed to the edge of extinction, forced deep into the mountains and stealing from the day-folk to survive.

The only way Willa can help her people from becoming extinct is to creep into the homes of day-folk in the cover of darkness and takes what they won’t miss. It’s dangerous work—the day-folk kill whatever they do not understand. Life for the Faeran is all about survival and unity, but human “day folk” are encroaching on their lives in the forest And now an even stranger new threat is looming; the railroad.

When Willa’s curiosity leaves her hurt and stranded in the day world, she calls upon an ancient, unbreakable bond to escape. Only then does she discover the truth: not all day-folk are the same, and the foundations that have guarded the Faeran for eons are under attack. For ages 8-12.

The Storm Runner by J.C. Cervantes

The Storm Chaser

How can one boy with a limp stop the Maya god of death, disaster, and darkness from destroying the world?

Zane has always enjoyed exploring the dormant volcano near his home in New Mexico, even though hiking it is challenging. He’d much rather hang out there with his dog, Rosie than go to middle school, where kids call him Sir Limps a Lot, McGimpster, or Uno – for his one good leg.

What Zane doesn’t know is that the volcano is a gateway to another world and he is at the center of a powerful prophecy. A new girl at school, Brooks, informs him that he’s destined to release an evil god from the ancient Maya relic he is imprisoned in–unless she can find and remove it first. Together they return to the volcano, where all kinds of crazy happen. Brooks turns into a hawk, a demon attacks them in a cave, and Rosie gives her all while trying to protect Zane. When Zane decides to save his dog no matter the cost, he is thrust into an adventure full of surprising discoveries, dangerous secrets, and an all-out war between the gods, one of whom happens to be his father.

To survive, Zane will have to become the Storm Runner. But how can he run when he can’t even walk well without a cane?

For ages 10-14. Grab a copy of this book on AmazonBarnes & Noble, IndieBound, and on Rick’s website.

 Travels with Gannon and Wyatt: Hawaii

Travels with Gannon and Wyatt

When an ancient map is found on a drowning archeologist, the explorers shift their focus to the secrets the map holds and go on an adventure to rarely visited parts of the islands of Hawaii. As the story takes a turn when they discover that the secret the map holds is to the secret burial site of King Kamehameha the Great. The adventure takes a turn as they learn that someone is after the map at any cost, even to them and their lives.

The Complete Pendomus Chronicles Trilogy: Books 1-3 of the Pendomus Chronicles Dystopian Scifi Fantasy Boxed Set Series by Carissa Andrews

A planet out of balance. The rise of an unlikely savior. A betrayal that could derail it all.

An Amazon #1 Bestselling Trilogy…{and one we highly recommend for an exceptional story and end-of-your-seat suspense!}

Can one girl’s lost humanity return to make her the most powerful being on Pendomus? Or will her naivety force those around her to succumb to a horrifying fate?

Only time will tell.

Just when all hope is lost—destiny intervenes and sets a new trajectory. The only question is … who’s pulling the strings?

Delve into the Complete Pendomus Chronicles trilogy, with over 1000 pages chock-full of mystery, magic, and gripping action that will keep you turning the pages until the very end.

The Apothecary by Maile Meloy

books like Percy jackson

When the apothecary is kidnapped, Janie and Benjamin must uncover the secrets of the sacred
Pharmacopoeia in order to find him and save the world. (Grades 6-8)

Secret Scouts and the Lost Leonardo by Mr. and Mrs. Kind.

It’s like The Goonies meets The Da Vinci Code, and even the book cover has a Stranger Things feel to it!

Secret Scouts and the Lost Leonardo

This  incredible book trailer brings the whole story to life:


Tom, Lisa, Sophie, and Jack stumble across the find of a lifetime — Leonardo da Vinci’s codex full of sketches, writings, and calculations. Now they have a choice: do they sell it and become richer beyond their wildest dreams, or do they try to decode the journal and figure out what Leonardo was up to? Tom and Jack want to sell the book, but sisters Lisa and Sophie have other ideas. What they discover within the codex is the science behind time travel. But when they put the calculations to the test, they find out just how dangerous this secret can truly be.

For ages 10-16 but don’t worry, parents can read it too 😉

It’s also no surprise that reading is a huge part of our summer and I know that is also the case with many of our readers. At Jump Into a Book we are always looking for ways to encourage families to “pull books off shelves and stories off pages.”

Books can be more than print on paper.

They can be invitations to new worlds and lively adventures,

and ones that can be enjoyed as a family unit.

The following is a short, simple list of tips, ideas, activities, and booklists to help reinforce summer in a fun, interactive, and family-orientated way. It’s our very unique  Leaves of the A-Z BookJumper Tree.

Leaves of the A-Z Summer Reading Tree

A. A summer of reading starts Special Reading Place. Where’s yours?

B. Be a Dream Collector (with some help from a Big Friendly Giant).

C. Challenge yourself: Try a new skill or craft.

D. Discover the wonders of the sky and space.

E. Explore your world with my Read Around the Continents series of booklists

F. Fight for what’s right Stand Tall against bullying.

G. Go Rediscover the Library: Check out your local library and sign up for kid’s reading hour.

H. Have a books swap and trade books with friends.

I. Investigate a good mystery!

J. Jump Into a Book-Create a fun bookjump with Wee Gillis.

K. Knights! Learn about Knights and Princesses and times long ago.

L. Love Louis Sachar? Here are some “Holes” inspired activities!

M. Multicultural children’s books are so important these days. Kids need to see themselves within the pages of a book. Here is a HUGE booklist that involves diversity in children’s literature.

N. Nature, Nature, Nature: There are so many amazing books and activities for kids about Nature!

O. Oceans away! Discover great books about pirates and our oceans.

P. PoemsPoems, and more Poems!

R. Read Around the Continents: Visit places like South America and Africa through the pages of a book.

S. Scissors! Ever tried “Painting With Scissors” with Henri Matisse? Here’s your chance!

T. Talk, snuggle, play and reconnect with your family over a good book.

U. Unicorns! Don’t believe in Unicorns? You might after reading this.

V. Vary your reading. Read a science book, then a fiction book and maybe even about being an author yourself!

W. Wonkalicious! Team up with Willy Wonka and Charlie and The Chocolate Factory for some wonkalicious activities!

X. eXplore: Explore what life was like during the early days of our country and during the buffalo days.

Y. Your Imagination is your guide to all the wonders of the world. Start by pulling books off shelves and stories of pages today.,

Z. EnthuZiasm! Read can be fun if you work with your kids to help make it enjoyable and interesting. Read on!