5 MG Series That I Love

Hello and welcome back!! It’s been a very manic week for me, what with work and extra deadlines and travelling various places and celebrating Thanksgiving… Let’s just say I’m grateful it’s the weekend! Today I was pondering over what to blog about, and I had a genius idea. Well, at least I think it’s quite genius. 😀

If you’ve read my blog for more than about two weeks, I’m sure you’ll be aware that I am a huge historical fiction fan. It’s my first love in the literary world and I am slightly obsessed. However, sometimes my brain is too tired to follow historical fiction (aka me right now after this crazy busy week :D) and I like to turn to something lighter. Cue: middle grade fiction. I know, I know – I’m nearly an adult and theoretically I should be shunning these childish books with every fibre in me. But, nope. I will freely admit that I do enjoy a good middle grade (MG from now on) book. And so today I’m going to be sharing 5 MG series that I love! When I pick up one of these books, I’m immediately hit with a wave of nostalgia and happy memories. These are the books of my childhood, and because I loved them then, I love them now!

Before I share my book picks, I just want to clarify MG for anyone out there that is a bit mystified by the term. According to this source, “Middle grade books are meant for younger readers who are comfortable with longer works, more complex topics and grammar, and full chapters. There’s a huge range of types and styles in this area—everything from Black Beauty to the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series could be considered middle grade! Basically, if it’s appropriate for a kid between 8 and 13, it’s probably middle grade.”

I find foraying into (quality!) middle grade fiction refreshing and relaxing. For me, the markers of quality MG books include things like humour, charm, innocence, and the importance of family and good morals. Sadly a lot of MG books published these days don’t fit this criteria (that’s a whole other blog post for another time!). Thankfully over my many years of reading I’ve managed to separate the dross from the silver so to speak, and today I’m going to share my absolute favourite MG series with you! So if you have younger siblings or nieces/nephews or grandchildren or children you babysit, or if you just fancy reading some quality children’s fiction, then this blog post is for you!!

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The Melendy Quartet – Elizabeth Enright

This delightful quartet of books is one of the main series I remember my Mum reading to me as a child. I must’ve been about 10 when she read these aloud to me and my sister. I remember begging for just one chapter more on warm summer nights, and being totally immersed in the world of these hilarious children – the Melendys. One might think that living mother-less during the time of WWII would mean that these four siblings lived depressing lives. Quite the contrary! These books are filled with their heart-warming, hilarious escapades and oh what joy they bring to my heart whenever I think of them! These books make me think of summer and the countryside and the ins and outs of sibling relationships and the loyalty and love of family. These books are timeless in their story and will delight readers of any age. 

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The Penderwicks Series – Jeanne Birdsall

I discovered this MG series relatively late in the game – only about 9 months ago. But the fact that I was so much above the target age range for these books didn’t hinder my deep enjoyment of them whatsoever. These five books tell the quirky and charm-filled stories of the four Penderwick sisters and their adventures over the years as they do life together, gaining new friends, making new enemies, and seeing their family grow. I loved how unique and realistic each sister was – and I should know having four sisters myself! Birdsall is a very solid writer, and I am very excited to get my hands on the final book to see how the Penderwicks’ story ends (I’ve not read book #5 so no spoilers please!! :D). 

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The Circle C Adventures Series – Susan K. Marlow

Of course what would a blog post about books be without at least one historical fiction mention?! 😀 I was introduced to this series about… 8 or 9 years ago probably, and I have been a huge fan of Mrs Marlow’s work ever since. This series chronicles the adventures of Andi Carter – a girl living on a ranch in the 1880s wild west. These stories are full of adventure and excitement – bandits, kidnappings, horse races, gold digging and much more! From the very first book I fell in love with the Andi’s world – how could I not, being such a big history fan! These are quality adventure stories with the added benefit of being solid Christian fiction as well. Plus, Mrs Marlow has written loads of other series about Andi for basically every age – young readers up to young adults! Check out the CCA website here for more information about the many books chronicling Andi Carter’s life.

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Andrew Clements

Ok, I’m going to cheat and recommend a MG author rather than a series. (I’ve picked my top 5 of his books to put in the slideshow above.) This author is Andrew Clements – and I love his writing! I think the first book I ever read of his was Frindle, and since then I’ve read the majority of his works. He writes about kids and their trials and triumphs in daily life and school. His protagonists are real and raw and go through some hard things. But his stories are so unique and engaging and positive that it’s hard not to love his books! The plots truly are so unique and I love being able to step inside the brain of a kid for the duration of the story. These books are more ‘school stories’ rather than ‘family stories’ as some of my other recommendations are – but this makes them unique and I highly recommend them! 

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The Moffats Series – Eleanor Estes

This last series reminds me of the first series I recommended – they are both about four siblings, missing one parent, who live during the time of a world war. However, The Moffats series is actually totally different from The Melendy Quartet. Different authors make for different stories I guess! This series is so wholesome and sweet and hilarious it’s impossible not to love it! I love each and every character for their quirks and foibles and the stories that they create together. This family is one that sticks together, even when times get really rough. They truly love each other, despite all their differences. And oh the escapades they get into! These four books are such a hilarious, delightful snapshot into the life Moffat family – I just love them. 

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So there you have it – 5 MG series that I love!! And now I’m seriously inspired to go reread some MG books – I feel like I’m in need of a dosage of hilarity + sweetness + charm + children in my reading life 😀 

Let’s chat in the comments! Have you read any of these books? What are your favourite MG books?

 

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3 thoughts on “5 MG Series That I Love

  1. Pingback: 2018 Reading Recap + 2019 Reading Goals | The Way of Delight

  2. Pingback: Book Review – The Heart Changer | The Way of Delight

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