60 Great Kid Lit Titles for Your Grown-Up Book Club

The heart of a great book club is great discussion books. Not sure about including children’s and young adult books in your book club selections? Give it a try – they can provide a lot of depth, and are generally quicker reads, which may help balance your yearly reading calendar.

If you’re looking for a juvenile title for your book club that will provide plenty of material for discussion, here are 60 possibilities. And if you need still more ideas, many of the authors mentioned below have additional titles that would make fantastic discussion books. Don’t forget to see what else they’ve written!

Be aware however, that simply because these are considered “juvenile” titles doesn’t mean they are all aimed at children. Many of the ones listed below are young adult books, with challenging themes and mature content, so keep that in mind when you are deciding if they’re an appropriate fit for your book club.

A heads-up! I haven’t read all of these, but I’ve compiled the list based on my own reading, and thanks to recommendations from trusted resources, particularly Amy from Stack Worthy. Titles I’ve read are marked with an (*)

Booked {Reading Together} | 60 Kid Lit Books for Your Grown-Up Book Club

Contemporary* Novels

  1. * Tangerine by Edward Bloor
  2. Evolution, Me, and Other Freaks of Nature by Robin Brande
  3. Wonder by R. J. Palacio
  4. The Outcasts of 19 Schuyler Place by E.L. Konigsburg
  5. Jeremy Fink and the Meaning of Life by Wendy Mass
  6. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
  7. Where Things Come Back by John Corey Whaley
  8. Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng
  9. A Corner of the Universe by Ann M. Martin
  10. Schooled by Gordon Korman
  11. Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
  12. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

Historical Novels

  1. * Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis
  2. * Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein
  3. * Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys
  4. * Penny from Heaven by Jennifer Holm
  5. * Across Five Aprils by Irene Hunt
  6. * After the Dancing Days by Margaret Rostkowski
  7. * The Land by Mildred D. Taylor
  8. * Never Fall Down: A Novel by Patricia McCormick
  9. Esperanza Rising by Pam Munoz Ryan
  10. The King’s Fifth by Scott O’Dell
  11. Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson
  12. Jim the Boy by Tony Earley

Fantasy, Science Fiction, and Dystopian

  1. * The Giver by Lois Lowry
  2. * Chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis
  3. * The House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer
  4. * Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer
  5. * Enchantress from the Stars by Sylvia Engdahl
  6. Over Sea, Under Stone by Susan Cooper
  7. The Magic Circle by Donna Jo Napoli
  8. The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster
  9. The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson
  10. Sabriel by Garth Nix
  11. Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne
  12. Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbit

Classics, Modern Classics, and Future Classics

  1. * The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner
  2. * The Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
  3. * The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin
  4. * Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery
  5. * Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech
  6. * When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead
  7. * The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare
  8. * Rules of the Road by Joan Bauer
  9. * Wednesday Wars by Gary D. Schmidt
  10. * A Long Way from Chicago by Richard Peck
  11. * Hatchet by Gary Paulson
  12. Watership Down by Richard Adams

Nonfiction – Memoirs, Biographies, and Narrative History

  1. * Homesick: My Own Story by Jean Fritz
  2. * Red Scarf Girl: A Memoir of the Cultural Revolution by Ji-li Jiang
  3. * The Endless Steppe: Growing Up in Siberia by Esther Hautzig
  4. * The Yellow Star by Jennifer Roy
  5. Shipwrecked!: The True Adventures of a Japanese Boy by Rhoda Blumberg
  6. Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice by Phillip Hoose
  7. Three Little Words: A Memoir by Ashley Rhodes-Courter
  8. Bad Boy: A Memoir by Walter Dean Myers
  9. Chinese Cinderella by Adeline Yen Mah
  10. I Will Always Write Back: How One Letter Changed Two Lives by Caitlin Alifirenka and Martin Ganda with Liz Welch
  11. Chasing Lincoln’s Killer by James L. Swanson
  12. The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion, and the Fall of Imperial Russia by Candace Fleming

Booked | Reading Together | A Series All about Book ClubsBooked: Reading Together

This is part of the Booked: Reading Together series. Throughout October, I’m writing all about book clubs.

Check out the archives in case you missed a post.

Previously on The Deliberate Reader

One year ago: What the Kids are Reading (in October 2014)
Two years ago: 31 Days of More Great Nonfiction: Maman’s Homesick Pie
Three years ago: 31 Days of Great Nonfiction: Me, Myself, and Bob

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  1. We’ve done several kid lits in our group. They’re a nice change of pace and the group usually enjoys them.

  2. Thanks so much for this list. Always on the look-out for new titles to explore for myself and ones to recommend to the two book clubs I attend.

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