Children’s Chapter Books to Check Out

Children's Chapter Books to Check Out

With Read Across America Day coming up, many of you parents and teachers might be scrambling for some good books for your kids to read. There are plenty of well-known picture books for younger kids, but sometimes it’s harder to come up with great chapter books that older children would enjoy. Lucky for you, I’ve done all the research and have compiled a list of my favorite children’s chapter books to check out.

Children's Chapter Books to Check Out harry potter

Harry Potter

First up has got to be the Harry Potter series. Possibly the greatest children’s book series ever written, J.K. Rowling created an entire world full of wonder, danger, and especially magic. What I love about the Harry Potter books is how they appeal to people of all ages. They’re fun and imaginative, yet the plots and themes are complex enough to engage even the most serious grown-up.

Children's Chapter Books to Check Out wayside school

Sideways Stories of Wayside School. Written by Louis Sachar, this book, (and in fact the entire series), made reading so much fun. Organized as a compilation of stories where each chapter is about a student or teacher at Wayside School, Sachar cleverly created a whole classroom full of interesting characters. I also find it amusing how he makes references back to previous events in true comedic fashion.

Children's Chapter Books to Check Out charlie and the chocolate factory

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Roald Dahl has written plenty of great stories, but Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is definitely one of the best. It’s almost like a Cinderella story, but it also has a moral theme to it.  Also filled with memorable characters and delicious imagery, there’s no doubt that this classic will continue to enchant kids for many years.

Children's Chapter Books to Check Out the phantom tollbooth

The Phantom Tollbooth. This book mirrors the sentiment of youth in this technology driven age, which is why it continues to be relevant and important. The story begins with a young boy name Milo who is bored with life. Nothing captures his interest until he receives a mysterious tollbooth and a map in the mail. He drives his electric toy car through the tollbooth and discovers a new world which he navigates with his watch dog companion, Tock. Throughout his journey he begins to understand the importance and beauty in learning, which is a gift that we hope all children will one day receive.

Children's Chapter Books to Check Out the lion the witch and the wardrobe

The Chronicles of Narnia. Another complex story that tackles justice in a magical land, this story is one that has captured the minds of old and young alike for many years. With themes derived from religion and mythology combined with fantasy elements like talking animals, evil witches, and magic portals, this series is a must for every child.

Children's Chapter Books to Check Out goosebumps

Goosebumps. I’m pretty sure your childhood cannot be complete without reading a few Goosebumps books. There’s just something about scary stories that are so much fun. The popular R.L. Stine series had just the right amount of scary and silly to be perfectly suitable for kids.

Novel Series – Sweet Valley High, Nancy Drew, The Babysitter’s Club, and The Boxcar Children. These books have long held their place on the library shelf. They have all been enjoyed and collected by many young readers. I remember taking the trip to the school library and picking out one of these books for their reliably entertaining stories. No matter how much time passes, there’s no doubt that these classics will continue to capture young audiences.

I hope your kids find something that appeals to them from this list. And if reading doesn’t get them excited, you can always get into costumes, throw a Read Across America party, and plan fun activities that will get your kids into the spirit of reading. If you have other chapter books to add to this list, feel free to leave them below in the comments. Happy reading!



I'm a mother of two and constantly searching for ways to have adventures and create memories as a new family. I love all things Disney, I'm obsessed with family costumes, and I will find any excuse to dress up and celebrate.

Lisa plays the role of the Fairy Godmother on the Pure Costumes team.

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