Since I am about to turn 18, I thought I should reminisce a little about my younger years. Even as a kid I was a very voracious reader and these are some of my favorites of my middle school/preteen years or younger.
I still LOVE all of these. :)
(Listed in no particular order)
Book of Bayern by Shannon Hale
These were my absolute favorites as a preteen. I love that Shannon Hale crafts such unique characters that you become genuinely attached to, and that her villains are actually very scary.
Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine
Ella Enchanted is still my favorite book. I absolutely ADORE Char. I love Ella for being so amazingly spunky (My nine-year-old self always wanted to be just like her). This book is simply amazing. The movie was plain old crap compared to this genius of a book.
The Two Princesses of Bamarre by Gail Carson Levine
It’s safe to say that Gail Carson Levine was my favorite author. I completely LOVED this book of sisterhood, magical items, romance, dragons, and finding courage.
Princess Academy by Shannon Hale
Another winner by Shannon Hale. This was actually my first Shannon Hale book I read, and I LOVE IT. Still. I loved the character transformations and I love Peder.
There is now going to be a sequel, and I’m so excited!!!
Nancy Drew books by Carolyn Keene
Oh my. It was a childhood dream of mine to be able to proudly say that I had read all the yellow hardcover Nancy Drew books. Sadly, I am still around 4 short of that goal, and I can’t remember which ones are left. But I am a faithful Nancy Drew supporter and I am proud that I never read those Trixie Belden books my mother always pushed at me. She thought I would like reading about a girl closer to my age, but what I really wanted was to read about Nancy, the 18 year-old detective, and desperately wish to be as mature and cool as she.
A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket
Huge fan. I am still saddened over the lack of scenes with my favorite character, Quigley, and over the ending. But I will forever cherish these books for their uniqueness. Each book had a sort of theme, a vastly different location than the last, extraordinarily diverse cast of characters, and the constant genius of the Baudelaires.
Side Note: I was never scared of Count Olaf. Is that normal? Or is it because I watched the movie first and had Jim Carrey in my mind?
The Spiderwick Chronicles by Tony DiTerlizzi and Holly Black
These books were my first introduction into the modern fairy world. I actually started reading these because I saw some kid reading them and laughing. I figured if it made him laugh, they’re probably great books! The Spiderwick Movie was pretty great too, except it took out my favorite book, the fourth one with the dwarves.
Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling
Although I wasn’t allowed to read these until I turned 13, they quickly became very important to me. I will forever adore this series for just everything about them. The magic, the friendship, the romance, the adventure, the comedy, the tears, the battle against evil, the battle against self, and the tragic loss of life involved in battle. These books exemplify everything that is good about children/middle-grade books. While they are enjoyable adventures, there are also great lessons learned from the characters’ decisions.