7th & 8th Grade
Blue Fingers: A Ninja’s Tale
By Cheryl Whitesel . 2004.
Having failed apprenticeship as a dye maker, Koji is captured and forced to train as a ninja, where he remains disloyal until he discovers samurai have burned his former village.
Code Orange. By Caroline B. Cooney. 2005.
While Mitty is working on his advanced biology project, he discovers, and handles, smallpox scabs. As the research continues, Mitty fears the virus is still active and that he may be infected and spreading the disease. And, as if this isn’t enough, Mitty is kidnapped by terrorists who want to turn him into a biological weapon!
Counterfeit Son. By Elaine Marie Alphin. 2000. (realistic fiction)
When serial killer Hank Miller is killed in a shoot-out with police, his abused son Cameron adopts the identity of one of his father's victims in order to find a better life.
* Dairy Queen: A Novel. By Catherine Gilbert Murdock. 2006. (realistic fiction)
While running the family dairy farm practically by herself, 16-year-old D.J. helps train the quarterback from the rival football team. When she discovers that she, too, has a talent for football and decides to try out for the team, the real excitement begins.
Dunk. By David Lubar. 2002.
While hoping to work as the clown in an amusement park dunk tank on the New Jersey shore the summer before his junior year in high school, Chad faces his best friend's serious illness, hassles with police, and the girl that got away.
Dovey Coe. By Frances O'Roark Dowell. 2000.
When accused of murder in her North Carolina mountain town in 1928, Dovey Coe, a stronged-willed twelve-year-old girl, comes to a new understanding of others, including her deaf brother.
Earth, My Butt and Other Big Round Things.
By Carolyn Mackler. 2005. (realistic fiction)
Feeling like she does not fit in with the other members of her family, who are all thin, brilliant, and good-looking, fifteen-year-old Virginia tries to deal with her self-image, her first physical relationship, and her disillusionment with some of the people closest to her.
* Every Soul a Star: A Novel. Wendy Mass. 2008. (realistic fiction)
Three very different teens witness a rare total solar eclipse and, while learning many interesting facts about astronomy, discover as much about themselves as they do about each other.
Gospel According to Larry
By Janet Tashjian. 2001.
Seventeen-year-old Josh, a loner-philosopher who wants to make a difference in the world, tries to maintain his secret identity as the author of a web site that is receiving national attention.
Gym Candy By Carl Deuker. 2007. (realistic fiction)
Groomed by his father to be a star player, football is the only thing that has ever really mattered to Mick Johnson,
who works hard for a spot on the varsity team his freshman year, then tries to hold onto his edge by using steroids, despite the consequences to his health and social life.
Harlem Summer. By Walter Dean Myers.
2007. (historical fiction)
Set on the hot city streets of Harlem in 1925, Mark Purvis is thrilled when he is given a simple job by Fats Waller, Harlem's musical genius, yet when the task goes wrong and a gangster ends up on his tail, young Mark thinks his days of impressing Fats with his skills on the saxophone may now be over.
*Home of the Brave. By Katherine Applegate . 2007. (realistic fiction)
Kek’s father and brother have been killed and his mother is missing. He has moved from Sudan to Minneapolis and has never experienced snow, or even the cold of winter. He’s never ridden on a bus or had his own desk and books at school. Can he learn to speak a new language and overcome the pressures and prejudices of his new country?
* Life As We Knew It. By Susan Beth Pfeffer. 2006. (science fiction)
Life dramatically changes for 16-year-old Miranda when a meteor hits the moon and knocks it closer to Earth. Worldwide tsunamis, earthquakes, volcanoes, food shortages, and extreme weather changes cause life as she knows it to disappear.
* London Eye Mystery.
By Siobhan Dowd. 2008. (mystery)
Kat and Ted, who has a form of autism, take their cousin, Salim, to the London Eye ferris wheel. They watch him get on, but he never gets off. When the police can’t find Salim, it’s up to Kat and Ted, whose brain “runs on a different operating system,” to solve the mystery.
By Will Hobbs. 1998. (adventure)
Fourteen-year-old Rick escapes from a juvenile detention facility, and ends up in a national park in Utah where he meets a biologist and learns about condors and life.
* Peak. Roland Smith. 2007.
Fourteen-year-old Peak ends up in the Himalayas with his father, who plans on Peak being the youngest person to climb Mount Everest. Find out what it’s like to climb the world’s highest mountain in this amazing and informative adventure.
* Shooting the Moon. Frances O’Roark Dowell.2008. (realistic fiction)
Jamie can’t wait to get letters from her older brother who has joined the Army and been sent to Vietnam. But, instead of letters, her brother sends her rolls of film which gradually show her a side of war she never expected to see.
* The Schwa Was Here. By Neal Shusterman. 2004. (realistic fiction)
“Antsy” Bonano’s new friendship with Calvin Schwa takes an interesting turn when they come up with moneymaking schemes to prove that nobody ever notices Schwa, even when he’s standing in a crowded room.
Sleeper Code. By Tom Sniegoski. 2006.
Tom suffers from narcolepsy. Because of this condition he falls asleep unexpectedly and for long periods. He thinks he’s merely asleep during these blackouts, but he’s wrong. The truth is very different — and much more terrifying.
Whale Talk By Chris Crutcher. 2001. (realistic fiction)
Intellectually and athletically gifted, TJ, a multiracial, adopted teenager, shuns organized sports and the gung-ho athletes at his high school until he agrees to form a swimming team and recruits some of the school's less popular students.