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Award-Winning Historical Fiction for Middle Grade Readers

Novels for Kids in the Grades 4-8 Range

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11. Countdown, Book 1 The Sixties Trilogy: 3 Novels of the 1960s for Young Readers

Cover art for Countdown a children's books for ages 9-12
Scholastic Press, an imprint of Scholastic

Title:  Countdown, Book 1 The Sixties Trilogy: 3 Novels of the 1960s for Young Readers
Author: Deborah Wiles
Overview: The first in a trilogy, this novel is about an 11-year-old girl and her family in 1962, during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Photos and other artifacts from the time period add to the book's appeal.
Awards:  Publisher’s Weekly Best Book of the Year, 2010
Publisher:  Scholastic Press, an imprint of Scholastic, Inc., 2010
Publication Date:  2010
ISBN:  9780545106054
Read the review of Countdown, Book 1 The Sixties Trilogy.

12. Dead End in Norvelt

Farrar, Straus and Giroux, an imprint of Macmillan Publishers
Title: Dead End in Norvelt
Author: Jack Gantos
Overview: Set in Norvelt, Pennsylvania, Gantos uses his own childhood experiences and his vivid imagination to create the story of 12-year-old Jack Gantos in the summer of 1962. Gantos combines appealing characters, mysteries, small town adventures, humor, history and life lessons to create a novel that will appeal to kids 10-14.
Awards: 2012 Scott O’Dell Award winner for young people's historical fiction and the 2012 John Newbery Medal for children’s literature for the novel.
Publisher: Farrar, Straus, Giroux, an imprint of Macmillan Publishers
Publication Date: 2012
ISBN: 9780374379933.
Read the review of Dead End in Norvelt.

13. One Crazy Summer

Cover art of One Crazy Summer novel for ages 10-14
Amistad, an imprint of HarperCollins

Title: One Crazy Summer
Author: Rita Williams-Garcia
Overview:  Set in the 1960s, this novel is unusual in that it focuses on the Black Panther movement in the context of one African American family and the summer three sisters, who have been raised by their father and grandmother, visit their mother in California where she is involved in the Black Panther movement.
Awards:  2011 Scott O’Dell Prize for Historical Fiction, 2011 Coretta Scott King Author Award, 2011 Newbery Honor Book
Publisher:  Amistad, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers
Publication Date:  2010
ISBN:  9780060760885
Read the review of One Crazy Summer.

14. Inside Out and Back Again

Cover of Inside Out and Back Again
HarperCollins

Title:  Inside Out & Back Again
Author:  Thanhha Lai
Overview:  This novel by Thanhha Lai is based on her life, leaving Vietnam in the mid-'70s when she was 10 and the difficult adjustment to life in the United States.
Awards:  2011 National Book Award for Young People's Literature
Publisher:  HarperCollins
Publication Date:  2011
ISBN:  9780061962783 
Read the review of Inside Out & Back Again.

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