60+ short middle-grade novels kids will love

60+ short middle grade novels
Posted on May 15, 2024

I’ve been busy.

Noticing a trend in the Your Kid’s Next Read Facebook (YKNR) community of members looking for ‘short middle-grade novels’, I set out to write an article for the YKNR newsletter’s paid subscribers about what might be driving the interest, some bookseller recommendations and some insights from writers about the joys and challenges of writing ‘short’.

You can read it here (we have a free trial available so you can have a look at what we’re doing over there!).

But, of course, I also asked the wonderful YKNR community for its recommendations – specifically for middle-grade novels that are 240 pages or under – and, of course, our members delivered!

I’ve compiled a list below of those recommendations, indicating page numbers where available. Click the title to see more about the book or to purchase.*

Hope you find a great new book for your young reader here! Let me know if you do!


60+ Short Middle-Grade Novels (240 pages or under)


Middle-grade novels up to 150 pages

Miss Penny Dreadful (series) by Allison Rushby (144 pages)

Frindle by Andrew Clements (128 pages)

Kingdom of Silk (series) by Glenda Millard (96 pages) “Such beautiful books that treat difficult subjects so gently. The vocabulary, the descriptions make me stop reading to just appreciate them.” – Amanda

Annabel Again by Meg McKinlay (144 pages)

How to be the New Person by Anna Branford (128 pages)

Sea Glass by Rebecca Fraser (112 pages) “For 7-12 year olds. We loved it! (Was shortlisted in Readings Children’s Prize last year.” – Danielle

Uncle Xbox by Jared Thomas (64 pages)

Birrung The Secret Friend by Jackie French (144 pages)

Losing The Plot by Annaleise Byrd (144 pages)

Swimming on the Lawn by Yasmin Hamid (144 pages)

Barney and the Secret of the Whales by Jackie French (144 pages)

Rowan of Rin (series) by Emily Rodda (138 pages) “Emily Rodda is the master of a whole story in a small novel.” – Gillian


Middle-grade novels 151-180 pages

A Single Shard by Linda Sue Park (162 pages)

Answers in the Pages by David Levithan (176 pages)

The Elephant by Peter Carnavas (180 pages)

Songbird by Ingrid Laguna (176 pages)

Blueback by Tim Winton (168 pages)

Rocket by Dave Lowe (180 pages)

The Dragon Defenders (series) by James Russell (180 pages)


Middle-grade novels 181-200 pages

Warhorse by Michael Morpurgo (192 pages)

The Barrumbi Kids (series) by Leonie Norrington (196 pp) “Actually my kids didn’t read this, but I did and loved it.” – Suzy

Aster’s Good Right Things by Kate Gordon (196 pages)

Ella At Eden (series) by Laura Sieveking (192 pages)

Michaela Mason’s Big List Of Worries (series) by Alexa Moses (192 pages)

Music for Tigers by Michelle Kadarusman (192 pages)

The Lorikeet Tree by Paul Jennings (192 pages)

The Reindeer and the Submarine by Beverley McWilliams (200 pages)

Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo (192 pages)

The Midnight Zoo by Sonya Hartnett (192 pages)

The Unstoppable Flying Flanagan by Felice Arena (192 pages)


Middle-grade novels 201-239 pages

My Brother Ben by Peter Carnavas (208 pages)

The Unlikely Heroes Club by Kate Foster (208 pages)

The First Summer of Callie McGee by A. L. Tait (208 pages)

Who Am I? by Anita Heiss (208 pages)

Huda and Me by H Hayek (208 pages)

A Kind of Spark by Elle McNicoll, illustrated by Kay Wilson (208 pages)

When My Name Was Keoko by Linda Sue Park (208 pages)

Exit Through The Gift Shop by Maryam Masters (216 pages)

The Lost Library by Wendy Mass and Rebecca Stead (224 pages)

The Callers by Kiah Thomas (224 pages)

Wishtree by Katherine Applegate (224 pages)

Surface Tension by Meg McKinlay (224 pages)

Tiger Daughter by Rebecca Lim (224 pages)

Berani by Michelle Kadarusman (224 pages)

How to Bee by Bren MacDibble (224 pages)

Cog by Greg van Eekhout, illustrated by Beatrice Blue (224 pages) “Has been popular in my school library with y7/8s.” – Amy

Some Places More Than Others by Renee Watson (224 pages)

The Mud Puddlers by Pamela Rushby (224 pages)

The Magician’s Elephant by Kate DiCamillo (224 pages)


Middle-grade novels 240 pages

Ferris by Kate DiCamillo (240 pages)

Ban this Book by Alan Gratz (240 pages),

Haywire: The Dunera Boys by Claire Saxby (240 pages)

Queenie In Seven Moves by Zanni Louise (240 pages)

Pippa’s Island (series) by Belinda Murrell (240 pages)

Liars (series) by Jack Heath (240 pages)

The Bravest Word by Kate Foster (240 pages)

Hamlet Is Not OK by R. A. Spratt (240 pages)

The Letterbox Tree by Rebecca Lim and Kate Gordon (240 pages)

Hurricane Child by Kacen Callender (240 pages)

Crookhaven (series) by J. J. Arcanjo (240 pages)



a l tait profileAre you new here? Welcome to my blog! I’m Allison Tait, aka A.L. Tait, and I’m the author of middle-grade series, The Mapmaker Chronicles, The Ateban Cipher, and the Maven & Reeve Mysteries. My latest novel THE FIRST SUMMER OF CALLIE McGEE is out now. You can find out more about me here, and more about my books here.

If you’re looking for book recommendations for young readers, join the Your Kid’s Next Read Facebook community, tune in to the Your Kid’s Next Read podcast and sign up for the Your Kid’s Next Read newsletter

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