Best Books for Sixth Grade Readers

Posted on February 1, 2021

by Regina S

From classics to new favorites, here is a list of great books for sixth graders. Time to get lost in a good book!

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Cover of Some Kind of Courage

Some Kind of Courage
By Dan Gemeinhart

eAudiobook   |   hoopla

After his father dies, Joseph’s untrustworthy guardian sells his horse without his permission. On an epic journey to reclaim his beloved horse, Joseph encounters peril at every step. This is an action-packed historical novel taking place in the late 1800s in Washington State

Cover of New Kid

New Kid
By Jerry Craft

eBook   |   hoopla eBook   |   hoopla eAudiobook

New Kid is the first graphic novel to win the prestigious Newbery Award. Jordan is a seventh grader whose parents send him to a fancy private school where he is one of the few kids of color. It is a great quick read for kids dealing with challenging circumstances in their lives.

Cover of Smile

By Raina Telgemeier

Spanish   |   eBook

In the first book of Telgemeier’s semi-autobiographical Smile series, Raina has an accident which damages her teeth. This leads to braces, surgery and false teeth, just in time for the start of sixth grade. This short and simple book will make you smile as you commiserate with Raina’s ordeal.

Cover of A Good Kind of Trouble

A Good Kind of Trouble
By Lisa Moore Ramée

eBook   |   hoopla eAudiobook   |   hoopla eBook

Twelve-year-old Shayla is excited about starting junior high with her friends “the United Nations.” Shayla is Black, Isabella is Puerto Rican and Julia is Japanese American. But as school starts, Shayla faces a bully and is challenged by track. And the United Nations isn’t so united! Black Lives Matter protests are spreading throughout her city and causing tension in her school. True to middle school topics, this book is a timely read.

Cover of Sal and Gabi Break the Universe

Sal and Gabi Break the Universe
By Carlos Hernandez

eBook   |   hoopla

Sal, a 13-year-old Cuban American magician, is off to a rocky start at his new arts school, thanks to a bully and a know-it-all girl named Gabi. He can summon things from parallel universes, including versions of his own dead mother. But when worlds mix, things don’t always turn out right! Middle schoolers will enjoy the amusing storytelling in this book.

Cover of See You in the Cosmos

See You in the Cosmos
By Jack Cheng

eBook   |   eAudiobook   |   Spoken CD

Eleven-year-old Alex records his thoughts on a golden iPod which he intends to send into space. He sets off on an adventure with new friends and makes discoveries about his family along the way in this great quest novel.

Cover of Genesis Begins Again

Genesis Begins Again
By Alicia D. Williams


Dark-skinned in a family that values lightness, Genesis tries to alter her appearance. Her father’s struggle with alcoholism threatens her family’s stability, and a move puts her off-balance in a mostly white school.

Cover of The One and Only Bob

The One and Only Bob
By Katherine Applegate

eBook   |   eAudio

A sequel of sorts to The One and Only Ivan, this quick read is told by Bob, a stray dog living in the zoo that has become Ivan’s home. When a hurricane hits, Bob saves the day. I love the way Applegate gets into the minds of animals and brings them to life.

Cover of Gregor the Overlander

Gregor the Overlander
By Suzanne Collins

eBook   |   eAudiobook

Gregor and his two-year old sister fall through a hole in their building’s laundry room, landing in Underland. There, giant cockroaches, rats, and humans survive in a dangerous world under New York City. Can Gregor find his missing father in this strange land? I discovered this book after reading the Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins, a master storyteller.

Cover of Roller Girl

Roller Girl
By Victoria Jamieson


A graphic novel about a girl who drifts apart from her best friend after becoming enthralled with the roller derby, devoting herself to compete. Kids learning to discover themselves will relate to this book.

Cover of From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler

From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler
By E.L. Konigsburg

Spoken CD   |   eBook   |   eAudiobook

In this classic novel, 12-year-old Claudia and her younger brother run away from home to live in the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art, evading guards and bathing in a fountain. While at the museum, they solve the captivating mystery of a statue that may be a work by Michelangelo.

Cover of We’re Not from Here

We’re Not from Here
By Geoff Rodkey

eBook   |   eAudiobook

After Earth is made uninhabitable by war, Lan’s family has retreated to Mars. As resources dwindle, they set off for Planet Choom, populated by giant mosquito-like beings. Lan’s family is chosen to demonstrate that humans can be cooperative members of society. This funny book is the ultimate school outsider story. Like all great science fiction, it is a great commentary on society

Cover of Tristan Strong Punches a Hole In the Sky

Tristan Strong Punches a Hole In the Sky
By Kwame Mbalia

eBook   |   eAudiobook   |   hoopla

Mourning the loss of his friend Eddie, Tristan heads to his grandparents’ house in Alabama. When a living doll steals Eddie’s journal, Tristan is pulled into another world. Woven with characters from African American lore, this action-packed book keeps the reader hooked.

Cover of Echo Mountain

Echo Mountain
By Lauren Wolk


In this Great Depression-era novel, Ellie and her family struggle to survive, moving to the Maine mountains to live off the land. After an accident leaves her father in a coma, Ellie is determined to revive him. In the process, she learns about community, friendship and personal potential. With scenes featuring dangerous wild animals and gruesome injuries, the book speaks of resiliency and hope in our current struggles.

Cover of When You Trap a Tiger

When You Trap a Tiger
By Tae Keller

Lily and her family relocate to care for her aging grandmother. When they arrive, Lily spies a huge tiger, who seems to be connected to stories her grandmother told her. Lily’s fight against the tiger becomes the fight to save her grandmother from terminal illness. This is a well-crafted weaving of Korean folk tales and a family story.

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