Welcome to a realm where the ordinary becomes extraordinary, where the impossible comes to life, and where young heroes rise to the challenge!

Middle-grade fantasy books are your golden ticket to a world where magic weaves through every page and epic adventures await at every turn. These are the stories that spark the imagination, tug at the heart, and take readers on unforgettable journeys.

So, if you're ready to discover enchanting worlds, forge unbreakable friendships, and unlock the door to pure wonder, you're about to embark on a reading adventure like no other.

Just a heads up, Reading Rhapsody could make money from sales or other compensation through any of the links on this page if you purchase something – that’s how I keep afloat! My reviews have been tweaked to ensure they are both concise and clear. Nevertheless, all opinions in this article are my own. Now go ahead and begin your journey to find your next favorite read!

What is Middle Grade Fantasy?

Middle-grade fantasy books are like super cool stories that mix magic and awesome adventures. They're made for kids around 8 to 12 years old, so they're perfect for those in middle school. These books usually have young heroes who go on crazy journeys, meet creatures from myths, and find out how strong they really are. Think about magical schools and exciting quests – these stories have them all!

They're full of amazing places and characters that feel real. They teach about friendship, bravery, and finding out who you are. When you read middle-grade fantasy, you get to go to worlds where anything can happen. Whether you love wizards and dragons or secret groups with magical stuff, these books are like a ticket to adventure and magic!

Why Read Middle-Grade Fantasy?

What's awesome is that middle-grade fantasy stories also teach you important stuff about friendship, being brave, and finding out who you are. They're like life lessons but hidden in these magical tales. So, when you read them, you're not just having fun – you're learning stuff that can help you in real life.

The Best Middle-Grade Fantasy Books

Get ready to dive into the realm where imagination knows no bounds and every page is a gateway to endless wonder. From hidden spells to enchanted realms, these books are like secret portals that lead to unforgettable adventures. So, grab your imagination, and let's journey through some of the best middle-grade fantasy books that'll light up your reading world!

Archibald Finch and the Lost Witches

Secrets buried for centuries resurface when young Archibald discovers a family mystery within his grandmother's manor.

Unintentionally unlocking a hidden power, he's thrust into the world of Lemurea, where light battles darkness, magic challenges fire, and an army of young witches faces enigmatic Marodors.

Meanwhile, Archibald's sister, Hailee, uncovers a dark priest's sinister plans. Two gripping stories converge, setting two worlds on a collision course.

Check Price on Amazon

Why do I love it?

What stood out the most about this first book of the series was the amazing creatures and humor. The connection to Da Vinci felt real and added a cool twist. And to top it off, this book is just beautifully written. The way the words and pictures work together adds to the old-fashioned charm.

Seriously, they don't make books like this anymore. With mysteries, clues, and a bit of magic, the author put them all together in one book, leaving some questions unanswered, which makes me eager for the next one. I think "Archibald Finch" will be a favorite for kids, like Peter Pan, Narnia, and Harry Potter.

What you should know

Archibald Finch is afraid of many things, including vegetables and his new home, which his family inherited from his grandmother. However, he faces his fears in search of a Christmas present his parents claim they haven't bought yet. Instead, he discovers an ancient family secret when he finds an old globe hidden in the library. Accidentally unlocking it, he's transported to a strange world like Narnia.

In this unfamiliar and frightening land filled with monsters and witches, Archibald is determined to find a way back home, along with his new friends. Meanwhile, his sister Hailee must cope with her brother's disappearance and unravel the mystery of the globe. As she investigates, she realizes others are interested in the globe's mysteries and are willing to kill for it.

Percy Jackson and the Olympians

This book series revolves around Percy Jackson, a twelve-year-old boy who deals with dyslexia and ADHD. But don't underestimate him, because he's about to embark on epic quests filled with mythical creatures, magical artifacts, and secret societies. The series takes you on a journey through both real-world locations and imaginative realms as Percy encounters Greek gods, fights monsters, and uncovers his own incredible powers.

Check Price on Amazon

Why do I love it?

From the very first book, "The Lightning Thief," I was hooked by the amazing characters who felt like real friends to me. Percy Jackson, with his funny jokes and relatable problems, quickly became one of my favorite characters. The way the series combines Greek mythology with the modern world is so cool and makes the story even more interesting.

The funny parts made me laugh and added a lot of fun to the story. The series also taught me a lot about Greek mythology without even feeling like I was learning. The themes of friendship and loyalty in the books touched my heart and made me appreciate my own friends even more.

What you should know

The main character, Percy, goes on amazing adventures, fights tough monsters, and meets cool creatures from ancient Greek stories. He's joined by his friends Annabeth and Grover. Together, they face challenges, learn about their family history, and discover their own special powers.

In the first book, Percy learns he's a demigod at Camp Half-Blood. A prophecy says he's really important in a fight involving gods. So, he embarks on a crazy mission to find Zeus' stolen lightning bolt. He discovers a big plan that could cause a war among the gods.

In "The Sea of Monsters," Percy and his friends go to a dangerous place called the Sea of Monsters. They're after something powerful called the Golden Fleece that can heal and protect. But they have to deal with scary creatures and unfriendly demigods.

Next is "The Titan's Curse." Percy, Annabeth, and a new friend Thalia must rescue the goddess Artemis. They fight monsters and bad guys to prepare for a big showdown.

"The Battle of the Labyrinth" is intense. Percy and his friends have to navigate a tricky underground maze. They encounter traps, scary creatures, and new allies who help them prevent a war.

The last book, "The Last Olympian," is the big finale. Percy is at the center of a huge battle between gods and the bad Titan Kronos. He's the hero of a prophecy and has to save the world. With his friends, he fights in an epic battle that decides the fate of the gods and their world.

The Girl Who Drank the Moon

In a town where a yearly offering to a kind forest witch becomes a tradition, one mistake changes everything. When a baby named Luna is accidentally infused with powerful magic, she must protect her world from a threat that seeks to destroy it. "The Girl Who Drank The Moon" is a tale of courage, friendship, and the power within us all.

Check Price on Amazon

Why do I love it?

What I really love about this story is that it speaks up against influential, corrupt people who oppress others. It's also about creating our own families and filling them with lots of love. What's interesting is that it shows that sometimes, the good guys look like bad guys, and the people we think are heroes might actually be causing problems.

In this book, you'll find themes like being kind or mean, having hope or feeling really sad, and the magic and danger that go hand in hand. There's also a lot about dealing with loss and sad events. But overall, it's a story about making families and spreading love in a world that's sometimes amazing and difficult at the same time.

What you should know

"The Girl Who Drank the Moon" by Kelly Barnhill is a really captivating and beautifully written book about a young girl named Luna who has special magical powers linked to the moon. She lives in a village where they believe they must give a baby to a scary witch in the forest every year to keep her at bay.

Xan is actually kind and protects the abandoned babies, taking them to loving families. Luna, Xan, a swamp monster named Glerk, and a little dragon-like creature called Fyrian become like a family.

Luna discovers her hidden magic, and a boy named Antain uncovers the city's lies. Their paths collide changing the city forever. The story shows that words can control or free us. Fear is powerful in politics, but Luna's message of using power for good conflicts with it.

Bridge to Terabithia

Two fifth-graders, Jess and Leslie, form an unlikely friendship. Together, they create a magical kingdom in the woods called Terabithia, where they escape the challenges of their everyday lives.

However, tragedy strikes the friends, leaving Jess to grapple with grief and learn to cope with loss. The book navigates the complex emotions surrounding death and the importance of finding support in times of despair.

Check Price on Amazon

Why do I love it?

What I love most about this book is its ability to transport readers into a world of imagination and friendship.

But what truly makes this book special is its exploration of themes like loss and grief. Through Jesse and Leslie's friendship, children can learn about the importance of acceptance, loyalty, and cherishing the people who make a difference in our lives.

The characters in Bridge to Terabithia are relatable and genuine. but what stood out the most was Jesse and Leslie's bond. It was beautifully portrayed in the book, and I could not help but feel immersed in their friendship.

What you should know

If you've seen the movie but haven't read the book, there are some important things to know. The movie is a good adaptation, but it can make you think it's all about magical creatures when, in reality, it's about the power of imagination.

In the story, two kids, Jess and Leslie, create their own magical kingdom called Terabithia in the woods near their homes. They use their imagination to escape the challenges of real life, like school bullies and family troubles. But the book is more honest about this imaginative world – it's not about actual magical creatures. Instead, it's about the kids' friendship and how they cope with growing up and facing life's uncertainties.

When You Trap a Tiger

Lily's ordinary life takes a fantastical turn when she and her family move in with her grandmother, who harbors a mysterious past. As Lily navigates her new surroundings, she stumbles upon a magical tiger, who promises to grant her deepest desires if she helps him. But as with any magical deal, there are consequences.

Check Price on Amazon

Why do I love it?

I enjoyed "When You Trap a Tiger" for a unique reason: its storytelling. Even though I come from a different background, I felt a strong connection to how stories help us discover who we are. These stories not only make the characters more interesting but also make the plot really engaging. What's special is how storytelling helps the characters deal with tough feelings, like when someone they love gets sick, making the story even richer.

This book's beautiful writing and well-developed characters won me over instantly. It's not just a good story; it's also a wonderful tribute to Korean culture, a touching exploration of dealing with grief and family, and a celebration of finding your own voice. I'm excited to read more of her books.

What you should know

Before starting seventh grade, Lily and her older sister Sam moved from California to Sunbeam, Washington, to live with their ailing Korean grandmother, Halmoni. Lily often feels invisible, unlike her sister Sam, who easily fits in. They both enjoy their grandmother's stories, especially the one about two sisters who turned into the sun and the moon to escape a tiger.

One day, Lily sees a magical tiger by the road, which reminds her of their favorite story. When she tells Halmoni about it, she learns that Halmoni had taken something from the tiger long ago and hidden it in jars. Now, the tiger wants it back. Halmoni explains that the jars hold stories that become stars in the night sky. As a child, she didn't like the sad stories, so she hid them away.

With the help of a new friend named Ricky, Lily creates a tiger trap in the basement, where they discover boxes containing the jars of stories. That night, the tiger appears in the basement, offering a deal: return the stories, and Halmoni will feel better. Lily agrees, and with each story returned, she pieces together Halmoni's past, discovering truths and separating fact from fiction.

Hook's Daughter: The Untold Tale of a Pirate Princess

This captivating novel presents an imaginative twist on the infamous Captain Hook's story, delving into the life of his daughter, Andromeda also known as "Rommy".

What if everything Rommy believed about her father was false? Raised in a boarding school, she awaits his rare visits. This summer, she's determined to join him on his travels, but he never arrives. Fearing the worst, she disguises herself and embarks on a journey through nineteenth-century London, leading her to the magical, enigmatic island of Neverland, where her father's true nature may be revealed.

Check Price on Amazon

Why do I love it?

What makes this book stand out to me is the unique perspective it offers. Instead of focusing on Peter Pan and his gang of Lost Boys, we get to explore Hook's daughter. I am a sucker for a strong female character and Rommy is as strong as they come.

Rommy doesn't back down from any tough situation, whether it's facing dangerous mermaids, flesh-eating plants, or a scary Peter Pan. She's determined to find out who her dad really is.

The author's way of telling the story made me feel like I was right there in every scene, and the characters felt real. It's a new and exciting twist on a classic story.

What you should know

This is book 1 of a trilogy. Andromeda, aka "Rommy," is a young girl who lost her mom when she was very little. She's spent most of her 12 years at a fancy boarding school. Her dad is a successful businessman in the shipping industry and the captain of his own ship. He only visits her twice a year – on her birthday and at Christmas – and never takes her along because he thinks it's too dangerous.

But Rommy is determined to change her dad's mind. She recently became the youngest champion in her school's fencing competition, hoping it would show her father that she's up for adventure. She dreams of him taking her on the summer vacation. When her birthday comes around, she's excited. However, her dad doesn't show up, which is unusual.

Worried that something might have happened to her father, Rommy takes matters into her own hands. She dresses as a boy and sneaks out of school, traveling through nineteenth-century London. Her journey raises more questions than answers about her father's whereabouts.

To find her dad, Rommy realizes she must go to the magical island of Neverland. There, heroes and villains aren't so clear-cut, and her father might be the biggest surprise of all.

A Mermaid in Middle Grade: The Talisman of Lostland

Meet Brynn Finley, a young mermaid trying really hard to learn magic. She dreams of becoming a sea guardian, rescuing people, all while dealing with the challenges of sixth grade.

But there's a problem – Brynn is the only mermaid at school who can't do magic. To make her dream come true, she needs to figure out how magic works. With the help of her best friend, she meets a cute sea turtle, two nice selkie sisters, and a scary sea witch named Phaedra. Brynn gets into some serious trouble, and she has to learn how to ask for help, give her best effort, and keep her promise to the merfolk.

Check Price on Amazon

Why do I love it?

I thoroughly enjoyed the first book "A Mermaid in Middle Grade" of this series for many reasons. The story teaches us about taking care of the ocean, asking for help when you need it, and the meaning of true friendship and love.

What's special about this book is how it can be enjoyed by kids, parents, and teachers alike. The characters are really likable, and their adventures are both exciting and heartwarming. Personally, I got lost in the magical underwater world and couldn't stop reading.

And what's even better, "A Mermaid in Middle Grade" shows that you don't have to be a young girl to dream about being a mermaid. Even those of us who are a lot older can still enjoy the magic of the ocean and the thrill of adventure.

What you should know

Brynn Finley, a mermaid with an important mission – taking care of the sea. She's starting middle school, where mermaids learn to use magic powers. Brynn likes to brag about her magic skills, even though she's not very good at it.

When she can't perform a simple spell, she starts telling lies and making deals with not-so-nice sea creatures to keep her secret. But as one lie leads to another, Brynn finds herself in trouble and needs to correct her wrongs.

The right book for you!

Middle-grade books transport young readers to captivating realms with unforgettable characters, epic quests, and incredible abilities. From the whimsical adventures of Lemurea to the enchanting world of Neverland, to the captivating worlds of Percy Jackson and more, these books ignite wonder in readers of all ages.

They offer valuable life lessons, inspire creativity, and foster a love for reading that lasts a lifetime. Whether you're a seasoned fantasy fan or just starting your journey, the best middle-grade fantasy books are waiting to be discovered, inviting you into a world of limitless possibilities.

Happy reading!