Grade 6 Reading List

Recommended by educators at top U.S. gifted and talented schools

An excellent reading list for 6th graders, starting with classic fiction books, followed by contemporary fictions, fantasy and science fictions, and poetry, and ending with social studies and non-fiction titles. 


  • The Red Pony
  • Where the Red Fern Grows
  • A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
  • The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
  • The Giver (1994 Newbery)
  • The Giver Quartet boxed set


  • Chains (The Seeds of America Trilogy)
  • Forge (The Seeds of America Trilogy)
  • Ashes (The Seeds of America Trilogy)
  • The Mostly True Adventures of Homer P. Figg (2010 Newbery Honor)
  • Leviathan (The Leviathan Trilogy)
  • What I Saw And How I Lied
  • Al Capone Does My Shirts (2005 Newbery Honor)
  • Countdown
  • Moon Over Manifest (2011 Newbery)
  • Heart of a Samurai (2011 Newbery Honor)
  • The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate (2010 Newbery Honor)
  • The Book Thief

Contemporary Fiction

  • When You Reach Me (2010 Newbery)
  • Liar and Spy
  • Ninth Ward
  • Sunrise Over Fallujah
  • A Mango-Shaped Space
  • Smiles to Go
  • Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie
  • American Born Chinese
  • Half Brother
  • Every Soul A Star
  • Chomp

Fantasy and Science Fiction

  • The Alchemyst: The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel
  • Impossible
  • The Looking Glass Wars
  • The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation, Vol. 1: The Pox Party
  • Graceling
  • Ship Breaker
  • Watership Down: A Novel
  • 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
  • The War of the Worlds
  • The Little Prince
  • The False Prince (The Ascendance Trilogy, Book 1)


  • Swan: Poems and Prose Poems
  • Delights & Shadows
  • Boris

Social Studies

  • D'aulaire's Book of Greek Myths
  • A Little History of the World: Illustrated Edition
  • One-Hundred-and-One Read-Aloud Myths & Legends
  • The Story of the World: History for the Classical Child: Volume 1: Ancient Times: From the Earliest Nomads to the Last Roman Emperor


  • The Real Benedict Arnold
  • Charles and Emma: The Darwins' Leap of Faith
  • Mao's Last Dancer
  • Chasing Lincoln's Killer
  • Moonbird: A Year on the Wind with the Great Survivor B95