...where too much of what's out there is way too easy, but the leap up to novels without pictures is too far for most kids to jump.
I constantly hear people bemoan the lack of good chapter books for kids ages 6-9. They wonder what they will do when their child finally finishes A-Z mysteries and Magic Tree House.
The good news is, there is plenty for them to do. Truly. Not that there isn't room for more and better literature for this age group, there definitely is, there always will be, but there are lots of choices out there already.
And for girls there are TONS! Granted, these books definitely fall into patterns and they are very repetitious, and many of them are too similar to one another (spunky white girl that has adventures—seriously, look at this list! They are all spunky white girls having adventures.) But get them for your daughter anyway. Stick them around the house, at the kitchen table, in the bathroom, in her bedroom, and see what sticks.
Here are some of our favorites, and I'll continue this next week with some that are not our favorites, but that are probably just as good.
Lucy and Mary really liked these series:
Ivy and Bean by Annie Barrows
Only Emmy by Sally Warner (there are now six or seven in the series)
Katie Kazoo by Nancy Krulik
The Mallory Series by Laura Friedman
The Cupcake Diaries by Coco Simon
And of course, Clementine by Sara Pennypacker
Some new, promising series now a little too young for my girls, but might be great for yours...
Princess Posey by Stephanie Greene (this is for younger readers, 5-7)
Sophie the Awesome (and so forth) by Lara Bergen
Penelope Crumb by Shawn Stout (This one is for older readers—Penelope is in 4th grade)
I'd love to hear any suggestions from anyone else for this genre—thinner novels with lots of pictures for younger middle grade readers. Hands down, this is the area I get the most requests for suggestions! We all need help in this area—I certainly do for Shaemus!