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Recommendations for books for 8 year old girl with a reading age of 11

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Showing 1-25 of 235 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 25 Oct 2009 22:20:16 GMT
C. Tripp says:
It's hard to find books that are interesting enough but aren't too grown up. She's not interested in make-up, summer camps, boys etc. She loves animals but is beyond Magic Puppy/ Kitten.


Posted on 25 Oct 2009 22:25:08 GMT
C. Tripp says:
It might be helpful to list what she has enjoyed reading lately: Roddy Doyle's Rover Adventures, Marley & Me, Enid Blyton's Mystery series, Jacqueline Wilson's Sleepovers, Jeremy Strong's Laugh your socks off series, Roald Dahl.

Posted on 26 Oct 2009 07:54:59 GMT
G Chips says:
My kids enjoy The White Giraffe series by Lauren St John, but what's really caught their imagination this year is The Unravellers by Tracey Morley - an exciting adventure featuring some of the most believable fantasy creatures ever!

Posted on 26 Oct 2009 08:18:36 GMT
Gm Howard says:
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In reply to an earlier post on 26 Oct 2009 09:44:25 GMT
S. Winter says:
if she likes a laugh, try any of the jiggy mccue books by michael lawrence- all my girls have loved them at about that age.
charlotte's web or jennie/ the snow goose ( paul galico) are absolute classics about animals and anything by michael morpurgo should go down well

In reply to an earlier post on 26 Oct 2009 10:12:43 GMT
F. Pawley says:
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In reply to an earlier post on 26 Oct 2009 10:53:43 GMT
C-AT says:
Has she already read all of the old classics? My daughter (who is only seven so perhaps abit too young in taste) loves Mary Poppins, Little Women, The Secret Garden, Ballett Shoes, Tom Sawyer, Gullivers Travels, The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe (though interestingly the snow Queen frightened her a little). She is far more interested in the older books than any of the modern ones at her reading level probably because at her level the modern reading matter seems to all revolve around topics that she is not interested in whereas the older novels seem to almost be totally absorbing.

Posted on 26 Oct 2009 12:07:34 GMT
S. B says:
Will recommend anything by michael morpurgo

Posted on 26 Oct 2009 16:53:29 GMT
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In reply to an earlier post on 26 Oct 2009 19:15:59 GMT
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In reply to an earlier post on 26 Oct 2009 20:35:15 GMT
Last edited by the author on 26 Oct 2009 20:35:37 GMT
S. Hearl says:
My eldest daughter is the same age & has the same reading age as your daughter she also has the same likes/dislikes! I agree that books for her age are too easy to read & everything aimed at her reading age is too old in content.

After a lot of searching around we've found that she loves old-fashioned books more than modern ones and some of her favourites are The Far Away Tree, Anne of Green Gables (I was amazed by the fact she loves this!), Butterfly Lion, Kensuke's Kingdom, The Secret Garden, Black Beauty, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and The Secret Seven books.
Children are just like us and will only read a book if the subject grips them and the 'classic/older' books tend to have better (& more age appropriate) storylines.

Also books like The Secret Seven aren't a stretch to read so my daughter can relax whilst reading them. After all my bookcase is filled with just as much Bernard Cornwell & Stieg Larsson as it is with Dostoyevsky, Bronte and Dickens so why shouldn't hers be?

In reply to an earlier post on 26 Oct 2009 21:10:16 GMT
L. Humphrey says:
My Daughter loves the Humphrey Books - Friendship According to Humphrey and many others in the series. All about the class pet Hamster and his adventures when he goes home with different people in the class. Also the Jiggy mccue books are popular

Posted on 26 Oct 2009 22:05:47 GMT
A. Williams says:
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Posted on 26 Oct 2009 22:23:46 GMT
M. Dowden says:
What about Little Women or Black Beauty?

Posted on 27 Oct 2009 07:52:17 GMT
Ms. H. Dyer says:
Just in case she hasn't read them already, I was just like her and loved of the Narnia series by C. S. Lewis. I also loved The Phoenix and the Carpet by E. Nesbitt, even though it's a bit dated it's still a great story. Try also The Indian in the Cupboard by Lynne Reid Banks and my all-time favourite The Ogre Downstairs by Diana Wynne Jones. This last inspired my own book for children aged 7-11, The Boy in the Biscuit Tin, about three children who find a magic set that does real magic. It's not 'fantastical' and the magic is solidly grounded in the real world, and real characters, so your daughter may enjoy that as well. Good luck!

Posted on 27 Oct 2009 15:48:04 GMT
Cats59 says:
My daughter is now 11 and had the same issue, at 8 she was reading the dragon rider, the thief lord, and Igraine the brave all by Cornelia Funke. She loved novels by Terry Pratchett, the Tiffany Aching trilogy, the Wee Free Men, A Hatful of Sky, and Wintersmith. Also the Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rhodents. All of these are more demanding reads than the young child books but do not involve boys,makeup etc....

Posted on 27 Oct 2009 18:46:27 GMT
Lynne says:
You might want to check out 'Gertie Gets it Right (eventually)', by new fantasy writer Lynne North. It's a highly amusing novel for approx 8 yrs to young teens about a young witch who can't get anything right...she doesn't even look the part...

In reply to an earlier post on 27 Oct 2009 20:59:42 GMT

I would recommend that she read Michelle Paver 'Chronicals of Ancient Darkness', starting with Wolf Brother. These books inspire the imagination of both boys and girls and are extremely well written.


In reply to an earlier post on 28 Oct 2009 19:33:33 GMT
I have had the same issues as you and agree with alot of the recommendations already posted,my daughter also loves the Alex Rider series by Anthony Horowitz and Roman Mysteries by Caroline Lawrence.

In reply to an earlier post on 29 Oct 2009 00:14:29 GMT
Last edited by the author on 29 Oct 2009 01:08:02 GMT
Hazel says:

The Warriors series by Erin Hunter is great. And since she loves animals, this might be exactly what you are looking for.
The first book is Into The Wild.
Check out this link at to read an excerpt

The official website is lovely btw, and has some short stories and fun games:

I'm not sure if she's too young for Meredith Ann Pierce's trilogy about unicorns, but they might be worth looking at (for now or later, in a few years):
Birth of the Firebringer
Dark Moon
The Son of Summer Stars

For an excerpt of the first book, you can check out

You could also try:
Diana Wynne Jones' The Chronicles of Chrestomanci (first book: Charmed Life)
The Deltora series by Emily Rodda (first book: Forests of Silence).
The Edge Chronicles by Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell. The first book (= the first book of the Twig trilogy): Beyond the Deepwoods
The Beast Quest series by Adam Blade. (first book: Ferno the Fire Dragon)

If not now, then maybe soon she'll also like:
John Flanagan: The Ruins of Gorlan (first book in The Ranger's Apprentice series)
Click on "Books", "Ruins of Gorlan" and "Read an extract"

Susan Cooper: The Dark is Rising series
The first book is Over Sea, Under Stone (which is a bit similar to some Enyd Blyton books), but the second book The Dark is Rising is much better imo (but I happen to be an adult, so maybe she thinks differently) and you can read book 2 first (or book 1 not at all) if you like. Anyway as a whole the complete series is very good.
The official site is:

Good luck and happy reading!

P.S. My 10-year old nephew and I also liked Wind Tamer by Pearl Morrison very much.

Posted on 29 Oct 2009 02:58:40 GMT
Last edited by the author on 29 Oct 2009 02:59:20 GMT
Oz Pom says:
"A Series of Unfortunate Events" by Lemony Snicket.
The girls in my class (who were 11 years of age at the time) strongly associated themselves with the character of Violet in this series.
"Inkheart", "Inkspell" and "Inkdeath" by Cornelia Funke.
These are currently being devoured by the girls in my class.

In reply to an earlier post on 29 Oct 2009 08:07:57 GMT
Harry Faber says:
Action adventure-wise try The Magic Scales by Sam Wilding
The Seven professiors of the North by John fardell

Posted on 31 Oct 2009 10:00:06 GMT
Rains says:
The BorrowersMy Nine year old girl is throughly enjoying The Borrowers series. Also should recommend the Terry Pratchett books for younger readers (Truckers, Diggers, Wings etc) if she's not too girly.

Posted on 2 Nov 2009 22:36:17 GMT
CA Severs says:
The seven professors of the far north is very good, as is the sequel The silver turtle both by John Fardell.
You could try some of the Eva Ibbotson books for younger teens like Journey to the River Sea or the Star of Kazan.
Some of the harder Michael Morpurgo books are probably suitable like Twist of Gold, Little Foxes, Alone on a wide wide sea.
The Charlie Bone series by Jenny Nimmo is also good.

In reply to an earlier post on 3 Nov 2009 08:52:58 GMT
baldspot says:
My daughter read the 'Chronicals of Ancient Darkness' 2 years ago when she was eight, the last book in the series has been printed (I think there are 5)...beautifully written (I've read them too) and she's currently re-reading them at age 10. From your description of what she likes/dislikes..these should be perfect, also you can get boxed sets of Michael Morpugo books..they should be perfect for her, One mistake we made was to allow our daughter to only read to herself.....she absolutely loved at your daughters age to engross herself in her reading. She was always years ahead as your child is...when she moved on to another school she was put into lower than top group for reading. We found out that this was because she wasn't great at diction/expression when reading out loud! She now loves to read to us again every night (at the moment from another great book "Read me out loud..a poem to rap, chant, whisper or shout for every day of the year" ) and is back to top group again. Her ability had been lost along the way through lack of practice and shyness. Good luck!
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Participants:  195
Total posts:  235
Initial post:  25 Oct 2009
Latest post:  29 Mar 2013

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