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Ani Approved: 5 Excellent 6th Grade Books

Ani just finished fifth grade and is getting ready for 6th grade this fall.

She’s been reading up a storm and especially loves audiobooks (I stocked up BIG TIME during the Audible sale last week – I think I bought nearly 40 titles, most of them ones that Ani suggested we add to our collection).

Here are a few books she’s loved lately:

6th grade books

Ani Approved: 5 Excellent 6th Grade Books

The PenderwicksThe Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall
288 pages
I was just thinking the other day that this is one of the series my girls will associate STRONGLY with their childhood. They’ve listened to the audiobooks nonstop for years and read the books over and over again. Plus, there’s something extra fun as one of four girls in a family to listen to a book about . . .four sisters. These have the feeling of a classic even though they’re fairly new!

What Ani has to say: The Penderwicks is one of my favorite books. I’ve loved them since I first listened to them when I was about six. The storyline is so good and the characters are amazing (you can really relate to them a lot!). I love the entire series –  a lot of series get worse as they go but all the Penderwick books are really good. 

Projekt 1065Projekt 1065 by Alan Gratz
325 pages
Alan Gratz is a master of historical fiction and his books are always high action through famous moments in history. This one is about Michael O’Shaunessey who is Irish but lives in Nazi Germany and, along with his classmates, has joined the Hitler Youth. But Michael and his parents are actually spies and Michael’s job is to get an insider view of what’s going on in the Hitler Youth.

What Ani has to say: Projekt 1065 has a lot of action and adventure and very fast paced, which is something I really look for in books. I read this one for a book club – it’s pretty intense and I wouldn’t recommend it to my 9-year-old sister quite yet. It was really fun to read about WWII especially since it takes place in Nazi Germany and I had just been learning about WWII in school.

ResistanceResistance by Jennifer A. Nielsen

400 pages
I first discovered Jennifer Nielson with her False Prince series (which is FANTASTIC) but she’s branched out into historical fiction too and this is another WWII novel about Chaya who, after losing members of her family to the Nazis because her family is Jewish, decides to become a courier smuggling food, papers and more in and out of the ghettos of Poland.

What Ani has to say: Resistance was REALLY good! I didn’t really know about the ghettos and this book makes it feel like you’re right there. I learned a lot from this book AND it was super exciting and full of action. There are some parts that were a little intense but it was so good. 

Johnny TremainJohnny Tremain by Esther Forbes
320 pages
This is a Newbery winner that I remember SO WELL from my own childhood – I’m still a little bit in mourning about Johnny’s accident! Apparently Ani is having a historical fiction moment right now because this is ANOTHER historical fiction title about the American Revolution about a young silversmith apprentice who finds his future altered overnight by a tragic accident but discovers new meaning as he gets involved with the Sons of Liberty.

What Ani has to say: When Johnny had his accident, you feel it so strongly and think “how will he ever get through this?” I was ready to give up on the book but after a little bit, it got better and I finished it and the ending was really good. It talks about more than the Revolutionary War – it talks more about the build-up to the war. It feels like most books take place during wars rather than the things that lead up to it. I’d learned a lot of the things in the books from school but it was fun to see it from Johnny’s point of view. 

Jack and JillJack and Jill by Louisa May Alcott
352 pages
I have a beautiful vintage set of Louisa May Alcott’s books from my childhood and a few weeks ago Ani picked this one off the shelf (which took me a little by surprise!). Over the next several weeks she told me about the story as it unfolded and it was so fun to see her enjoy one of my favorite childhood authors!

What Ani has to say: Jack and Jill is a very fun book – it has a lot of humor and it’s also fun because it’s old fashioned. Louisa May Alcott has a very unique way of writing it where she acts as an all-seeing narrator. It’s very heart-warming and it has a lot of themes of friendship and helping others. 

If you’d like a printable copy of this list of 6th grade books so you can take to your library or screenshot on your phone for easy access, just pop in your email address below and it’ll come right to your inbox!


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