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Welcome to the Horn Book's Family Reading blog, a place devoted to offering children's book recommendations and advice about the whats and whens and whos and hows of sharing books in the home. Find us on Twitter @HornBook and on Facebook at

2017 Summer Reading List


For a handy take-along list of titles, download our printable PDF.

Picture Books

Suggested grade level for all entries: PS–2

Life on Mars written and illus. by Jon Agee (Dial)
Rescue Squad No. 9 written and illus. by Mike Austin (Random House)
Jabari Jumps written and illus. by Gaia Cornwall (Candlewick)
Chirri & Chirra written and illus. by Kaya Doi, trans. by Yuki Kaneko (Enchanted Lion)
Egg written and illus. by Kevin Henkes (Greenwillow)
We Found a Hat written and illus. by Jon Klassen (Candlewick)
Rudas: Niño’s Horrendous Hermanitas written and illus. by Yuyi Morales (Porter/Roaring Brook)
Best Frints in the Whole Universe written and illus. by Antoinette Portis (Porter/Roaring Brook)
Anywhere Farm by Phyllis Root, illus. by G. Brian Karas (Candlewick)
A Perfect Day written and illus. by Lane Smith (Roaring Brook)

Easy Readers and Primary Grades

Suggested grade level for all entries: 1–3

Somos como las nubes / We Are like the Clouds by Jorge Argueta, illus. by Alfonso Ruano, trans. by Elisa Amato (Groundwood)
Whoosh!: Lonnie Johnson’s Super-Soaking Stream of Inventions by Chris Barton, illus. by Don Tate (Charlesbridge)
Grand Canyon written and illus. by Jason Chin (Porter/Roaring Brook)
Giant Squid by Candace Fleming, illus. by Eric Rohmann (Porter/Roaring Brook)
Short Stories for Little Monsters written and illus. by Marie-Louise Gay (Groundwood)
The Infamous Ratsos by Kara LaReau, illus. by Matt Myers (Candlewick)
Juana & Lucas written and illus. by Juana Medina (Candlewick)
Princess Cora and the Crocodile by Laura Amy Schlitz, illus. by Brian Floca (Candlewick)
Radiant Child: The Story of Young Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat written and illus. by Javaka Steptoe (Little, Brown)
The Thank You Book written and illus. by Mo Willems (Hyperion)


Suggested grade level for all entries: 4–6

Out of Wonder: Poems Celebrating Poets by Kwame Alexander with Chris Colderley and Marjory Wentworth; illus. by Ekua Holmes (Candlewick)
The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill (Algonquin)
Funny Girl: Funniest. Stories. Ever. edited by Betsy Bird (Viking)
Makoons [Birchbark House] by Louise Erdrich (Harper/HarperCollins)
The Inquisitor’s Tale: Or, The Three Magical Children and Their Holy Dog by Adam Gidwitz, illus. by Hatem Aly (Dutton)
Full of Beans by Jennifer L. Holm (Random House)
Me and Marvin Gardens by Amy Sarig King (Levine/Scholastic)
Fish Girl by Donna Jo Napoli and David Wiesner, illus. by David Wiesner (Clarion)
Poop Detectives: Working Dogs in the Field by Ginger Wadsworth (Charlesbridge)
Clayton Byrd Goes Underground by Rita Williams-Garcia (Amistad/HarperCollins)

Middle School

Suggested grade level for all entries: 6–8

Maximilian & the Lucha Libre Club: A Bilingual Lucha Libre Thriller [Max’s Lucha Libre Adventures] written and illus. by Xavier Garza (Cinco Puntos)
One Last Word: Wisdom from the Harlem Renaissance by Nikki Grimes, illus. by various artists (Bloomsbury)
One Trick Pony written and illus. by Nathan Hale (Amulet/Abrams)
Dive!: World War II Stories of Sailors & Submarines in the Pacific by Deborah Hopkinson (Scholastic)
Here We Are: Feminism for the Real World edited by Kelly Jensen (Algonquin)
When the Sea Turned to Silver written and illus. by Grace Lin (Little, Brown)
Flying Lessons & Other Stories edited by Ellen Oh (Crown)
Ghost [Track] by Jason Reynolds (Atheneum/Dlouhy)
York: The Shadow Cipher by Laura Ruby (Walden Pond/HarperCollins)
Well, That Was Awkward by Rachel Vail (Viking)

High School

Suggested grade level for all entries: 9 and up

Bull by David Elliott (Houghton)
The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee (Tegen/HarperCollins)
March: Book Three by John Lewis and Andrew Aydin, illus. by Nate Powell (Top Shelf)
Undefeated: Jim Thorpe and the Carlisle Indian School Football Team by Steve Sheinkin (Roaring Brook)
Scythe by Neal Shusterman (Simon)
Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor (Little, Brown)
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas (Balzer+Bray/HarperCollins)
Thick as Thieves [Queen’s Thief] by Megan Whalen Turner (Greenwillow)
Spill Zone by Scott Westerfeld, illus. by Alex Puvilland (First Second/Roaring Brook)
The Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon (Delacorte)

These titles were featured in the 2017 Summer Reading list.


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