Scholar Recommended Booklist 2023
During the month of March, FWPS is celebrating reading and literacy for National Reading Month. To do so, we asked our PreK-12th grade scholars to share their favorite books with us to curate our second annual Scholar Recommended Booklist!
Check out a selection of the books included in the video below, then continue exploring the full booklist organized by grade level.
Watch: FWPS Scholar Recommended Booklist
Recommended by Scholars in Grades PreK-2
Sam and Mat (Bob Books)by Lynn Maslen Kertell Year Published: 2015 #PictureBook
PreK, Sunnycrest Elementary
“These books help me learn to read. They keep me interested because they are so much fun!”
Peppa in Spaceby Reika Chan Year Published: 2015 #Fiction #PictureBook
Kindergarten, Valhalla Elementary
“She likes to find all the things you're supposed to find.”
Creepy Crayon!by Aaron Reynolds Year Published: 2022 #Humor #Horror
Kindergarten, Lakeland Elementary
"Humorously explains how dishonesty can follow you."
Bite into Bloodsuckersby Kari-Lynn Winters and Ishta Mercurio Year Published: 2021 #Educational
1st Grade, Valhalla Elementary
"You learn about mosquitos. This book is my favorite because I like learning about animals."
I Broke My Trunk!by Mo Willems Year Published: 2011 #Funny #PictureBook
1st Grade, Meredith Hill Elementary
"That is a funny story! That is a crazy story! It made me laugh!"
Delfines al amanecer (Dolphins at Daybreak)by Mary Pope Osborne Year Published: 2005 #Adventure #Fiction
2nd Grade, Sunnycrest Elementary
"El libro es sobre delfines. Es mi favorito porque me gustan los delfinos."
(The book is about dolphins. It's my favorite because I like dolphins.)
Alicia en el País de las Maravillas (Alice in Wonderland)by Lewis Carroll Year Published: 2015 #Fantasy
2nd Grade, Sunnycrest Elementary
"Porque tiene muchas cosas interesantes, como aprender a no ser una persona mala."
(Because it has many interesting things, like learning how not to be a bad person.)
The Serious Gooseby Jimmy Kimmel Year Published: 2019 #Fiction #Funny
2nd Grade, Mirror Lake Elementary
"This book is about a goose who is not quite as serious as he thinks he is. In fact, he's a silly goose. It's my favorite book because there is a chance in the book where we get to be super silly and make funny faces, trying to make the goose not be so serious."
Recommended by Scholars in Grades 3-5
Dog Manby Dav Pilkey Year Published: 2016 #Fiction #GraphicNovel #Adventure
3rd Grade, Twin Lakes Elementary
"This book is about a dog that’s a police and a cat that's a villain. He tries to make a clone of him. It's my favorite because it has a moral and it's comedy!"
This Is My Americaby Kim Johnson Year Published: 2020 #Fiction #Mystery #SocialJustice
4th Grade, Silver Lake Elementary
“This is my favorite book because it was something I could honestly relate to, not like other books where they would have magical powers or whatever. This had something way more serious and that is why when I was looking for something to read, this was the first book I set my eyes on.”
30-Second Physicsby Brian Clegg Year Published: 2017 #Educational #Science
5th Grade, Woodmont Elementary
"I like this book because it's an easy, broken-down way to learn physics."
Diary of a Wimpy Kidby Jeff Kinney Year Published: 2007 #Fiction #Comedy
5th Grade, Lakeland Elementary
“It's about a kid that is a 6th grade in his first year, at middle school and he shows his experience and all the challenges and stuff he went through.
I've read it so many times and still love it."
Wings of Fire: The Dragonet Prophecyby Tui T. Sutherland Year Published: 2012 #Fantasy #Fiction #Adventure
5th Grade, Lake Grove Elementary
"I have read the whole series and it has so many interlocking parts and it has all the great things a book needs and more. Comedy, adventure, mystery, drama, action and so much more. Starting this book series will be the best decision of your life."
Recommended by Scholars in Middle School
Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universeby Benjamin Alire Sáenz Year Published: 2012 #Fiction #Novel #Coming-of-Age
6th Grade, Kilo Middle School
"In a nutshell, it's a work of art. It's my favorite maybe because of the development of the character and the book. It has 352 pages and the last page is the best. I don't like romance books but I loved this book."
Heartstopperby Alice Oseman Year Published: 2019 #Romance #Fiction
6th Grade, Illahee Middle School
“It is romantic and it has a lot of words, but it also has pictures to describe the words.”
Katt vs. Doggby James Patterson and Chris Grabenstein Year Published: 2019 #Fiction #Humor
6th Grade, Internet Academy
“It is about a boy dog and a girl cat. They both get stuck together in a forest and have to stick together to find the campsite. I like this book because even though they hate each other, they have to work together to get out.”
Locomotionby Jacqueline Woodson Year Published:
6th Grade, Kilo Middle School
"It's about a young boy named Lonnie aka Locomotion who loses his parents in a house fire. His younger sister was adopted by a wealthy family while he was placed in a foster home. It has a lot of topics young people should know about and it is a poetry book.
I love books that represent young POC and it talks about real-world topics that young people should know about. It's also a poetry book, it's just a really good book, to be honest."
The Last Fallen Moonby Graci Kim Year Published: 2022 #Fiction #Fantasy
6th Grade, Federal Way Public Academy
"It's a Korean mythology in the modern world. It is really interesting."
Algebra DeMYSTiFieDby Rhonda Huettenmueller Year Published: 2002 #Educational #Math
7th Grade, Illahee Middle School
"It explains linear equations, fractions, decimals, exponential and square root equations, quadratic equations, factoring, linear applications, quadratic applications, and inequalities.
It's my favorite because it talks about mathematical formulas and also talks about different concepts."
Lyddieby Katherine Paterson Year Published: 1991 #Novel #HistoricalFiction
7th Grade, Kilo Middle School
"It shows how hard Lyddie is trying to get back with her family. It shows all of the paths she has to go through just to go back to her family. She has overcome a lot of obstacles she had to face to get the thing she wanted."
They Both Die at the Endby Adam Silvera Year Published: 2017 #Fiction #Adventure
7th Grade, Illahee Middle School
"It's my favorite because of the unique story and wording, and the way it plays into human psychology and things like the six degrees of separation theory is really amazing."
When Stars Are Scatteredby Omar Mohamed and Victoria Jamieson Year Published: 2020 #NonFiction #GraphicNovel
7th Grade, Internet Academy
"It is about a boy named Omar and his special needs brother Hassan, who lives in a refugee camp. So, when Omar has the chance to go to school, he is torn between the choice of learning and having a better future and leaving his brother to go to school. There is later the possibility of being the few who get picked to go overseas to America.
It is a very touching story with heartbreak, hope, and gentle humor."
Paxby Sara Pennypacker Year Published: 2016 #Fiction #Novel
8th Grade, Sequoyah Middle School
"Pax is a double narrative story from Pax's view and the boy's view, about a boy who finds a baby fox and takes him in, but then his dad makes him get rid of him because he is going to fight in the war. Then, he realizes how much he misses the fox and how wrong it was to drop him off in the middle of nowhere, so he sets out to find his fox, only to break his leg and have no choice but to get help from a creepy lady in the middle of nowhere. She makes him do a few favors for her in turn for making him a cast and crutches. He travels very far and comes across many challenges, but eventually, he finds his fox and his fox loves and misses him, but his fox has found where he is supposed to be; in the wild.
It's sad, but such a sweet and true story."
Spirits, Spells, and Snarkby Kelly McCullough Year Published: 2019 #Fiction #Fantasy
8th Grade, Sacajawea Middle School
"It's about a 13-year-old boy and his fire hare pet who must use their new magical powers to rescue his long-lost father in a magical world.
It's really fun and as soon as you read the first 4-5 sentences, you won't be able to stop reading the book.”
The Alice Networkby Kate Quinn Year Published: 2017 #Novel #HistoricalFiction #War
8th Grade, Kilo Middle School
"Eve is a young French-British girl with a stutter who is recruited to spy on German troops in the captured town of Lillie with the Alice Network. She and the network almost end the war when they guide British bombers to a train carrying the German Kaiser. But the network is torn apart by a traitor. Meanwhile, Charlie is a young American girl who is attempting to get rid of her problem, but when she gets information that her cousin who was lost in WW2 might be alive, she embarks on an adventure across France with an Old British Spy and a Scottish Soldier in tow.
It's an in-depth historical fiction narrative that joins the worlds of Post WW2 and the early days of WW1 brilliantly.”
These Silent Woodsby Kimi Cunningham Grant Year Published: 2021 #Fiction #Thriller
8th Grade, Evergreen Middle School
"This book is my favorite book of the year because of how it's an amazing thriller novel. This novel has so many twists and turns in every chapter that is so exciting to expect the unexpected. This book is an amazing novel to read if you love thrillers, adventure, and mystery. These Silent Woods have got it. This book overall is an interesting, amazing book, and I definitely recommend it."
Recommended by Scholars in High School
Dark and Shallow Liesby Ginny Myers Sain Year Published: 2021 #Fiction #Thriller
9th Grade, Federal Way Public Academy
"This book is my perfect read because it draws you in and submerges you in southern culture and murky mysteries buried within the bayou. The main character, Grey, is intelligent and driven and will stop at nothing to find her childhood best friend. She falls in and out of love, and the crazy twists keep you on your feet while still making sense and falling into place. This novel is one of my all-time favorites and will be on my bookshelf forever. I completely recommend!"
Mexifornia: A State of Becomingby Victor Davis Hanson Year Published: 2021 #Biography
9th Grade, TAF@Saghalie
"Mexifornia: A State of Becoming is truly a masterpiece exposing people on the truth of the border crisis that is influencing modern America. Victor Davis Hanson displays the situation in America with stunning realism. He presents it using facts and statistics and presenting ideas that provide unique perspectives on America's border crisis, assimilation, and immigration as a person of Hispanic descent.
I found it unequivocally eye-opening and it helps me see things in a new light. It's a must-read for anyone into US politics or social sciences."
Monument 14by Emmy Laybourne Year Published: 2012 #SciFi #PostApocalyptic
9th Grade, Decatur High School
“Fourteen kids are trapped and forced to live in a superstore after a violent storm struck their bus. While the world outside has experienced dangerous chemical leaks in the air which are making people into violent monsters. The plot is so random in this book.
It hooked me the instant I read it. It had intense moments and elements that can appeal to people who like suspenseful and compelling stories. Also, the plot being so random made the story a bit amusing at times.”
The Eastern Front 1914-1917by Norman Stone Year Published: 1975 #NonFiction #History #War
9th Grade, Federal Way Public Academy
“I enjoy history and this is a part of history that I did not know about in fullness. This book was written by Norman Stone and is extremely detailed. Every page is full of 20 main ideas. The author focuses on the important details of Tsarist Russia.
Be aware this book is formatted in a PhD reading style, so good luck. I recommend reading this book to both broaden your knowledge of history, but the real reason is to advance your reading skills so that it would not be hard for you to read other books in the future.”
Horus Risingby Dan Abnett Year Published: 2006 #SciFi #War
10th Grade, Decatur High School
"It's an introduction to the Horus Heresy and a good introduction to the Warhammer 40k universe.
Simple to get into, engaging dialogue, intriguing plot, lays the foundation for universe-shattering civil war!”
The Inheritance Gamesby Jennifer Lynn Barnes Year Published: 2020 #Fiction #Mystery
10th Grade, Federal Way Public Academy
“It's NEVER boring. It's always interesting. The puzzles are very in-depth and contain historical elements. Every character is very layered, and the friendships and even romantic relationships are very deep. It's very entertaining to try and figure out everything along with Avery.”
Rules for Being a Girlby Candace Bushnell and Katie Cotugno Year Published: 2020 #Fiction #Feminism
10th Grade, Federal Way High School
"In this book, sexism, injustice, and victim blaming are brought to light. It hits on many points that need to be brought up in serious discussions."
Fahrenheit 451by Ray Bradbury Year Published: 1953 #SciFi #Dystopia
11th Grade, Thomas Jefferson High School
"In a world where firefighters don't stop fires, they make them. Books are prohibited and whoever has books gets their collection burned and is sent to jail."
Looking for Alaskaby John Green Year Published: 2005 #Novel #Fiction #Coming-of-Age
11th Grade, Federal Way High School
"Alaska Young brings up "How do I get out of this Labyrinth?" and there are so many ways to perceive that. This book is a coming-of-age genre book, which I naturally lean towards. Alaska is painfully beautiful, her experiences in life and the way she chose to deal with them were so notable.
Just the events in the book, quotes in the book, the Q&A with John Green at the end where he really analyzes why he wrote the way he did added all the much more flavor to it."
Every Dayby David Levithan Year Published: 2012 #Novel #Romance #Fantasy
12th Grade, Federal Way High School
"It's about a person who switches bodies every day. From the beginning of their life, they would switch into a new body every night. Everything was normal until they met this girl, Rhiannon.
I love that the writing is easy to understand, and the way it hooks you every time you read it, so it's hard to put down. It's so fascinating in its way to change my way of thinking!"
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nestby Ken Kesey Year Published: 1962 #Novel #Psychological #MedicalFiction
12th Grade, Todd Beamer High School
"The book is about self-acceptance and how awful the treatment was in mental institutions in the 50s.
It was really impactful and made me grateful for what I have and it weirdly taught me how to accept myself by accepting my weaknesses AND my strengths."
Rich Dad, Poor Dadby Robert Kiyosaki and Sharon Lechter Year Published: 1997 #NonFiction #Finance
12th Grade, Thomas Jefferson High School
"Rich Dad, Poor Dad" is a personal finance book written by Robert Kiyosaki. The book advocates how to use money as a tool for wealth development and financial literacy and offers advice on building wealth through investing in assets such as real estate and small businesses.
Rich Dad, Poor Dad is my favorite book for several reasons. One reason is its focus on financial literacy and the importance of understanding money and wealth-building. The book challenges traditional notions of work and success, encouraging readers to think differently about their financial futures and take control of their financial well-being.”