A Little Magic Here and There: 15+ Magical Realism Titles for Ages 8-12

29 May

Summer is here! And that means loads of time for kids to experience books in all their glory. This is also a great time to encourage kids to read the books they choose (without having to worry about school assignments) and to try out new genres that they might be interested in learning more about.

This series will offer titles for toddlers to teens and include a variety of formats. Each week will focus on a different genre and will follow the same format:

  • Mondays – Titles for Ages 3-7
  • Tuesdays – Middle Grade Titles for Ages 8-12
  • Wednesdays – Young Adult Titles for Ages 13+
  • Thursdays – Nonfiction pairings
  • Friday – Recap of the Week

Middle Grade

18209370Bayou Magic by Jewell Parker Rhodes
Maddie can’t wait to spend her summer in the bayou, but when a disaster in the way of an oil spill happens within the bayou, will Maddie’s family’s magic help her save the bayou?

Boys of Blur by N.D. Wilson
“Charlie hunts secrets in the glades and on the muck flats where the cane grows secrets as old as the soft earth, secrets that haunted, tripped, and trapped the original native tribes, ensnared conquistadors, and buried runaway slaves.” (Taken from Goodreads)

Crenshaw by Katherine Applegate
Jackson’s family doesn’t have enough money for rent or food and may end up living in their minivan again. Until Crenshaw returns, a six-foot imaginary cat who may be able to help Jackson’s family before it’s too late.

The Disappearance of Emily H. by Barrie Summy
Emily disappeared without a trace and it’s up to Raine and her gift of seeing into the past to piece together the puzzle and find out what happened to Emily and who is hiding the truth.

5Echo by Pam Muñoz Ryan
A harmonica brings together people from across time and place to fulfill a prophecy, keep a promise and realize destiny. Try this one on audio as the book has accompanying music.

Hour of the Bees by Lindsay Eager
Carolina isn’t at all happy about spending her summer in the hot New Mexico desert moving her grandfather into an assisted living community. But as the heat bears down and her grandfather’s tales grow wilder, Carolina must decide what is real and what is just a story.

The Lightning Queen by Laura Resau
“Against all odds, Esma’s caravan’s Mistress of Destiny predicts that Teo and Esma will be longtime friends. Suddenly, life brims with possibility. With the help of a rescued duck, a three-legged skunk, a blind goat, and other allies, Teo and Esma must overcome obstacles-even death-to fulfill their impossible destiny.” (Taken from Goodreads)

Me and Marvin Gardens by A.S. King
Obe Devlin has discovered a creature that plastic – old water bottles, trash, anything plastic, but Obe knows that if anyone were to find out about this unique creature it would be the end. So Obe must make the most difficult decision of his life that could affect his friendships, his family and himself in ways he’s only just figuring out.

Nightbird by Alice Hoffman
When the red moon rises, spells are broken and Twig’s family has been cursed for many years, but this summer, maybe just maybe, Twig can finally break the curse.

Pashmina by Nidhi Chanani
Priyanka has so many questions for her mother – why did she leave Indid? Why can’t they go visit? But, when Pri discovers an old pashmina hidden away and pulls it around herself she is transported to an India she can only imagine.

Phoebe and Her Unicorn by Dana Simpson
“Do you believe in unicorns? Phoebe does. She has no choice.. one day she skipped a rock across a pond, and hit a unicorn in the face. Improbably, this resulted in a lasting friendship between Phoebe and the unicorn, one Marigold Heavenly Nostrils.” (Taken from Goodreads)

Rules for Stealing Stars by Corey Ann Haydu
Silly’s home life isn’t great – her father pretends nothing is wrong, her mother’s mood swings and outbursts are worse than ever and her sisters are hiding something from her. When she finds the magic, she is sure that it will fix all her family’s problems, or will it?

4The Seventh Wish by Kate Messner
One day while ice fishing Charlie comes across a talking fish that is willing to grant wishes, but Charlie soon learns that her wishes don’t always come out the way she imagined. Soon her family is tested in a way they’ve never been tested before and Charlie must decide if the wish fish can help them.

A Snicker of Magic by Natalie Lloyd
Felicity’s mother has been cursed with a wandering heart which means Felicity has never found a place to call home, until her mother brings her back to their hometown of Midnight Gulch which has also been cursed for many years. Can Felicity help break the town’s curse and her mother’s in the hopes of finding a place to call home?

Some Kind of Happiness by Claire Legrand
Finley has blue days (brought on by depression and anxiety that she has no name for) and escapes into her notebook in a place she created called Everwood, but soon she realizes Everwood’s in danger and in order to save it, she might just have to figure out how to help herself first.

A Tangle of Knots by Lisa Graff
Everyone has a Talent, 11-year-old, orphan Cady’s talent is baking the perfect cake for its recipient. “Her destiny leads her to a mysterious address that houses a lost luggage emporium, an old recipe, a family of children searching for their own Talents, and a Talent Thief who will alter her life forever. However, these encounters hold the key to Cady’s past and how she became an orphan. If she’s lucky, fate may reunite her with her long-lost parent. (Taken from Goodreads)

Tumble & Blue by Cassie Beasley
“When the red moon rises over the heart of the Okefenokee swamp, legend says that the mysterious golden gator Munch will grant good luck to the poor soul foolish enough to face him.” Two hundred years ago two families’ fates were intertwined when they both reached Munch at exactly the same time. It’s now up to “Tumble Wilson and Blue Montgomery to fix their ancestors’ mistakes and banish the bad luck that’s followed them around for all of their lives.” (Taken from Goodreads)


5 Responses to “A Little Magic Here and There: 15+ Magical Realism Titles for Ages 8-12”

  1. Ramona May 30, 2018 at 9:22 am #

    Thanks for this list. I’ve only read Crenshaw and Echo. But both are fantastic books! And A Tangle of Knots is on my summer reading list.

  2. Jenna @ Falling Letters June 28, 2018 at 10:37 pm #

    I didn’t know Hoffman had a middle grade book – I will have to give it a look.


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