There is nothing I love more than coming up with a list of books to read aloud with my girls. If you’d like a printable copy of this read aloud list just pop in your email address below and it’ll come right to your inbox!
Every year, one of my January traditions is making a book list of possible read alouds.
I love looking back on what we read the previous year (you can see our 2023 read alouds here!) and then deciding what would be good options this coming year.
There’s something so delightful about making a book list for our year of reading aloud – it’s a fun way to think about our reading for the year, plus it makes it easier for us to smoothly transition from one book to the next as we finish one, instead of scrambling to figure out what to read next.
I spent hours looking at possibilities, reading book lists, and narrowing down options and I’m so excited about these titles (and a key part of reading aloud for me is books that I am excited about – if it’s not fun for me, it’s so hard to make time for it because I just don’t want to do it).
Will we get to all these books this year? Almost certainly not, in part because I’m always open to reading something that pops up or catches my eye as the year goes on.
But it’s nice to have a starting point so we don’t lose our reading momentum – here’s what we MIGHT read this year together!
15 read alouds for kids
The Mystery of Black Hollow Lane by Julia Nobel
I have heard this one is fantastic if you liked The Mysterious Benedict Society – which my girls did. In this mystery novel, Emmy investigates the connection between her father’s disappearance and the secret society at her prestigious English boarding school.
The Shakespeare Stealer by Gary Blackwood
In this historical trilogy, a young orphan boy is ordered to infiltrate Shakespeare’s acting troupe and steal the script of “Hamlet.” In the process he discovers the meaning of friendship and loyalty.
Summer of the Monkeys by Wilson Rawls
I have read Where the Red Fern Grows twice to my girls and cried my eyes out. So, I thought it would be fitting to read another book by Wilson Rawls, and in this one a boy discovers a tree full of monkeys. I’ve heard this one is also emotional, so I will be ready with tissues just in case.
Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins
You’ll recognize Suzanne Collins’ name from The Hunger Games, but before there was Katniss there was Gregor. Bart sped through this entire middle-grade series in a few weeks on audio. I think my older girls will really enjoy it, but it can be a little intense. If you have easily scared kids, you might want to wait until they’re a bit on the older end of middle grade.
Hans Brinker, or The Silver Skates by Mary Mapes Dodge
My in-laws almost always give books to their grandchildren for birthdays and they always pick out such fun ones. I especially love it when they choose older books that my girls probably haven’t seen before – this was one that Ella got for her 12th birthday and I think it will be perfect to all read together.
Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred D. Taylor
During the Depression of the 1930s, the Logan family is faced with prejudice and discrimination while living in Mississippi. I read this Newbery winning title as a kid and then I reread it in grad school and sobbed my eyes out. I am really looking forward to reading it with my girls!
Endurance, Young Readers Edition: My Year in Space and How I Got There by Scott Kelly
My girls have really taken a liking to non-fiction read alouds after reading Sir Charlie in 2022, and Shipwreck at the Bottom of the World last year. After spending a year in space, Scott Kelly shares his journey of what it was like living aboard the ISS. This one sounds FASCINATING!
Nory Ryan’s Song by Patricia Reilly Giff
I can’t go a year without reading a few historical fiction books with my girls. When a terrible blight attacks Ireland’s potato crop in the mid 1800s, young Nory Ryan uses her courage and ingenuity to help her family and neighbors survive.
The Lost Library by Rebecca Stead and Wendy Mass
When I read the description of this one, I knew I wanted to add it to our list immediately! It’s about a little free library, its cat guardian, and one big mystery to solve.
Greenwild: The World Behind the Door by Pari Thomson
I don’t know if there is anything my girls wouldn’t love about this fantasy series. A magical school, magical plants, a found family, delightful characters and a cute animal companion – sign us up!
Tiger Daughter by Rebecca Lim
This one just came out in August, and the reviews are already phenomenal. Wen is the daughter of Chinese immigrants growing up with the pressure of high expectations while trying to find her true voice. This coming-of-age novel sounds so good!
Me and the Pumpkin Queen by Marlane Kennedy
Even though my girls range in age, I always like to choose a few read alouds that will entice my youngest, Tally. I think she will really enjoy this one in October about a young girl trying to grow the biggest pumpkin.
All the Lovely Bad Ones by Mary Downing Hahn
I thought this one would be the perfect pick for October and the spooky season! I have this one in mind for my older girls about a brother and sister who accidentally awaken the ghosts at their grandmother’s old inn. Ultimately it’s up to them to figure out how to free the ghosts trapped there.
Juniper’s Christmas by Eoin Colfer
I love a Christmas read-aloud in December and this one sounds like the perfect read aloud. A young girl named Juniper sets out on a wild adventure to find her mother and protect the public park just days before Christmas. I can’t wait for all the extra Christmas spirit!
The Toymaker’s Apprentice by Sherri L. Smith
I really enjoyed her historical fiction book Flygirl, and this one is a fantasy riff based off the holiday classic The Nutcracker! If I have enough time for two read alouds in December, I would love to read this one too.
And if you’d like a printable copy of this read aloud list 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!
if you liked this post about read aloud books for kids, you might also like these other posts:
- 10 Tips for When Your Child Starts Resisting Read Alouds
- 8 Tips for Read Alouds for Kids of Different Ages
- 15+ Excellent Mystery Books for Kids