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Ella Enjoyed: 5 Books for 8th Graders

Looking for a copy of this list of books for 8th graders that Ella really enjoyed? Pop in your email address below and it’ll come right to your inbox!


I know – I can’t believe Ella is an 8th grader either.

One thing that HASN’T changed is that she’s still reading up a storm!

Here are five books she’s loved:

books for 8th graders

Ella Enjoyed: 5 Books for 8th Graders

once upon another time bookOnce Upon Another Time by James Riley
James Riley is known for his fractured fairytales, and this one journeys through the world of giants and genies. Everything you thought you knew about fairy tales gets flipped on its head in the most wonderfully surprising way. This book stands on it’s own, but there are several references to his earlier books.


What Ella has to say: I read one of James Riley’s other series, Half Upon A Time, a few years ago and really enjoyed it. When I finished this book I realized that the timelines and worlds were overlapping and it would be more fun to read this series if I went back and re-read the other one. I love it when writers do that because it adds a whole new level of depth to the plot. Anyway, I really enjoyed reading this book – it’s definitely just a light, fun read great for kids of pretty much any age.


a whole new world bookA Whole New World by Liz Braswell
This entire YA series (14 books in all) takes classic Disney movie stories and reimagines them in the most surprising ways. In this first installment, the story begins as usual – Aladdin running through the streets of Agrabah, and Jasmine meeting potential suitors for marriage, but the plot twists when Aladdin isn’t the one to lay his hands on the magical lamp and acquire the power of the genie. P.S. Much of the series is included in Kindle Unlimited!


What Ella has to say: If you are a long-time reader of Ella Enjoyed, you may know that I love fractured fairy tales and this Twisted Tale series is no exception. They always change a major plot point in the story like this one, “What if Aladdin had never found the lamp?”. This is definitely a darker version of the original story but still enjoyable to read. However, I wouldn’t recommend this to younger or easily scared kids.


coraline bookCoraline by Neil Gaiman
This book is definitely creepy! Coraline steps through a door into a world that looks almost identical to her. But there are some key differences too, including versions of her parents who want her to stay on this side of the door. If your child can handle something fairly creepy, this is a fun pick for older elementary readers.


What Ella has to say: I listened this book on a Yoto card last year and wasn’t sure if I would like it or not. I thought it was actually pretty good. It’s not my favorite book of all time but it was definitely interesting to listen too. Coraline is one of those books where you’re not exactly sure what’s going on but keep reading anyway. It was weird, slightly creepy, and entertaining, and a good Halloween book if there ever was one.


out of my mind book Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper
I read this on the airplane when I went to Portland and it just about ripped my heart out. Melody is born with some severe handicaps and many people believe she has no mental abilities at all, but she’s actually extremely bright, just unable to communicate much. When she finally gets a computer that allows her to express her thoughts, her whole world is opened up, but she quickly realizes that her peers might not be as thrilled as she is that she can now speak.


What Ella has to say: My mom read this book aloud to us after my cousin recommended it. I really liked both the story and the writing, and the sequel is also excellent. Highly recommend this book to anyone looking for an interesting and not-too-long read.


a single shard bookA Single Shard by Linda Sue Park
I didn’t know I had any interest in 12th century Korea until I read this. Then I made everyone I know read it. It’s beautifully written and such a great story. I read this one on my own years before I had kids and then revisited it with them. (Full review here)


What Ella has to say: We listened to this book in the car a while back and I loved it. I assumed I had already done an Ella Enjoyed that included it, but when I was deciding which books to do this time I went back just to make sure, it would be too bad if I never recommended this book. As it turns out I hadn’t and I was super excited to get to talk about it. A Single Shard is a great historical fiction for all ages. I also have read some of Linda Sue Park’s other books, including The Kite Fighters and Prairie Lotus, which are also really good!


And if you’d like a printable copy of this list of books for 8th graders that 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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