The Best Books for 5th Grade Boys of 2024

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It’s not easy to get kids reading. So, if you’re looking to help your tween develop a reading habit, you must be willing to go the extra mile, and that includes buying them the right books. What are the best 5th-grade reading-level books? How can you select one that suits your kid’s reading pattern? Here’s an article that reviews some of the best books for 5th-grade boys.

If you want to just get back to studying, get our top choice for books for 5th grade boys here.

Our Favorites for Best Books for 5th Grade Boys

The Alchemyst: The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel by Michael Scott

What better way to start our 5th-grade reading book list than with this beautifully written fantasy book by a renowned expert in legends and mythologies? The Alchemyst: The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel by Michael Scott is the first of Michael Scott’s projected six-book fantasy series. The book does not only reflect the author’s expertise but also his strong dose of history.

Thus, it offers great depth and intricacy into the fantasy world. This book teaches fifth graders about historical figures and the heroes, gods and goddesses of many cultures. In addition to these historical figures, the book includes creatures like Golems, gargoyles, Dire Cries, vampires, and even a sphinx, making it a thrilling and classic adventure.

What Makes it Unique:

  • The Alchemyst: The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel by Michael Scott combines humor and magic with tons of destruction to tell one of the most captivating fantasy stories for growing children.
  • Although the first of many series, this book still does justice to a unique story with little character development and much action to keep anybody glued.
  • Being the first of many captivating series makes it an excellent book to imbibe a reading culture in youngsters.

Why Choose This Best Book for 5th Grade Boys:

  • It is easy to read and filled with wonderful descriptions of the mythic worlds for easy understanding.
  • It’s a wonderful blend of magic, fact, and action that’ll leave any child wanting for more.
On Sale
The Alchemyst: The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel
  • Scott, Michael (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 400 Pages - 06/24/2008 (Publication Date) - Ember (Publisher)

Last update: 2024-05-22


The Last Mapmaker by Christina Soontornvat

Easily one of the most classic books for 4th and 5th graders, The Last Mapmaker by Christina Soontornvat tells the story of 12-year-old Sai, a poor little girl living in an area looked down upon. The story begins with how Sai leveraged some quick thinking and the right clothing to earn an assistantship with Paiyoon, the kingdom’s most illustrious mapmaker.

However, she’s faced with another task – concealing the truth about her and her father or facing the risk of never escaping poverty. She’d jump on the opportunity to embark on a voyage with her master to discover a fabled southern continent for the Queen.

The nautical adventure story is set in a Thai-inspired fantasy land, and it features tons of endearing characters and excellent plot twists to captivate readers. The author uses the story of Sai to teach tweens that people are not always what they seem. It also offers readers plenty of knowledge about environmental destruction, colonization, trust, friendship, animal welfare, and more.

What Makes it Unique:

  • The story is relatively short and mostly fast-paced, with multiple turns and twists to captivate young readers and have them read till the end.
  • The author focuses on depth and vibrance while writing about the worlds and characters.
  • The Last Mapmaker by Christina Soontornvat tackles deep themes such as the ethics of exploring new lands and searching for true identity.

Why Choose This Best Books for 5th Grade Boys:

  • It is an engaging story that unfolds with several characters that are full of life and relatable.
  • The author uses a simple writing style to tell about important themes so readers can be captivated and inspired.
On Sale
The Last Mapmaker
  • Hardcover Book
  • Soontornvat, Christina (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)

Last update: 2024-05-22


The Unexplainable Disappearance of Mars Patel by Sheela Chari

Based on the award-winning mystery podcast of the same name, this tech-inclined adventure series tells the story of a rule-breaker, Mars Patel and his loyal friends who stay true to him in the quest to figure out the sudden disappearance of many kids from their school and in different parts of the world.

The main theme of the story begins when Patel’s friend Aurora disappears. With his teachers clueless and his mom stressed out about the whole situation, Mars swings into action, knowing that his dad disappeared when he was a toddler. Luckily, his loyal friends bought into his idea and joined his search for truth and justice.

The story packs tons of real-life lessons for teenagers and young adults. But beyond these lessons, readers get treated to some of the slickest science corporate conspiracies they’ve ever read about. Besides, the nerdy protagonist brings to life everything a kid dreams of in an adventurous sci-fi character. As the story builds up to its climax, questions are raised about the real benefits of futuristic technologies and whether they’re worth the potential risks.

What Makes it Unique:

  • The Unexplainable Disappearance of Mars Patel by Sheela Chari builds up as an incredibly suspense-filled story with diverse characters being drawn into a complex mystery in a way that doesn’t leave middle schoolers lost.
  • The author handles each character with authenticity, both individually and in groups, such that the communication and dialogue throughout the book look true.
  • Instead of using the regular tried and trusted descriptive words in most stories, the author refined her words and dialogues to expand a reader’s vocabulary.

Why Choose this Best Book for 5th-Grade Boys:

  • Although fast-paced, the story doesn’t lose its authenticity or excitement at any point, making it endearing for anybody.
  • The use of unique dialogues helps keep kids lost in the story as they enjoy the fascinating energy it brings.
  • Although enjoyable, this story is still packed with tons of lessons that can help kids improve their problem-solving skills.
The Unexplainable Disappearance of Mars Patel
  • Chari, Sheela (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 320 Pages - 04/13/2021 (Publication Date) - Walker Books US (Publisher)

Last update: 2024-05-22


Our Runner Ups for Best Books for 5th Grade Boys

Harbor Me by Jacqueline Woodson

Here’s a good option for teachers and guardians looking for action-packed short chapter books for 5th graders. In this book by award-winning children’s book writer Jacqueline Woodson, a diverse group of school kids meet weekly in what they call a safe. The purpose of their weekly meetings is to discuss diverse, sensitive topics that they can’t discuss around adults and other students. They’d soon nickname the room ARRT Room (standing for “A Room to Talk ”), and their discussion topics ranged from the deportation of Esteban’s father to the unlawful incarceration of Haley’s and Amari’s father.

Harbor Me by Jacqueline Woodson is a stunning exploration and inspiring story of how America’s social and political challenges affect children. From the start of the book, the author’s belief that tweens can read about weighty matters is evident. However, he goes the extra mile to present matters (parental incarceration, immigration, socioeconomic inequalities, race, etc.) in ways that will excite youngsters and keep them glued throughout.

What Makes It Unique:

  • Although designed to be hope-filled and inspiring for youngsters, this book still packs enough information to serve as a starting point for many essential discussions.
  • Harbor Me by Jacqueline Woodson features a unique but magical storytelling style that helps readers see and understand how the children’s apprehension slowly turned into connection, compassion, and courage.

Why Choose this Best Books for 5th Grade Boys:

  • It’s easy to read and interesting without losing touch with the issues discussed.
  • It’s a perfect book for teachers to move their students from picture books to actual chapter books.
On Sale
Harbor Me
  • Woodson, Jacqueline (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 192 Pages - 04/21/2020 (Publication Date) - Nancy Paulsen Books (Publisher)

Last update: 2024-05-22


A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle

Although the story in this book is centered around a teenage girl named Meg Murry, it’s still an excellent option to add to your 5th-grade reading book lists for boys. Why? The author has designed the protagonist to possess a true grit, heart, and purpose and, at her core, a mind for math and science. You want your boys to learn these qualities from a young age, so it doesn’t do any harm to introduce them to the qualities through an exciting sci-fi novel that can keep them glued from start to finish.

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle is a sci-fi fantasy novel that many readers have compared with CS Lewis’ The Chronicles of Narnia because of the religious symbolism and mythology used throughout the book. The story focuses on the life of a teenage girl whose father has been missing for many years.

Although the government said her father (a brilliant scientist) is “serving the country”, the family is worried about what could have happened to him, especially since most residents of the small town live in fear that the worst may have happened. However, everybody keeps hope alive that he’ll come back someday.

What Makes It Unique:

  • Although relatively brief, the author still gives good characterization and a sense of cast, especially as the story unfolds.
  • Ultimately, A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle qualifies as a book that celebrates uniqueness and individuality in people while reminding readers about the importance of art, poetry, prose, and music to society.
  • The author does well in presenting big adult themes in ways that are relatable to tweens and can rekindle their belief in a world of endless possibilities.
  • It’s a story of love overcoming evil at a micro level and a very high level of personalities vs. institutions.

Why Choose this Best Book for 5th-Grade Boys:

  • Easy to read with remarkable characters and plot twists that will keep you at the edge of your seat.
  • The book is a fascinating blend of fantasy, myth, and science fiction.
On Sale
A Wrinkle in Time (Time Quintet)
  • Madeleine L'Engle (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 256 Pages - 05/01/2007 (Publication Date) - Square Fish (Publisher)

Last update: 2024-05-21


Our Value Picks for Best Books for 5th Grade Boys

Freak the Mighty by Rodman Philbrick

No 5th-grade reading level books review will be complete without one targeted at inspiring disabled kids. Here’s one book that does justice to this theme. Freak the Mighty by Rodman Philbrick is a story of two boys – a slow learner stuck in the body of a teenage giant and a tiny Einstein in leg braces. These two team up to become a formidable force undertaking imaginary quests and fighting all-too-real criminals. While in the process, they learn to conquer time.

The story in this book is fascinating for anyone, especially as the author has successfully built topics like learning disability and physical disability into the plotline to make it an excellent forum for discussions about kindness and inclusion towards others. It also teaches young adults about the perks of developing friendships against all odds and leveraging such friendships to do better for society.

What Makes It Unique:

  • Freak the Mighty by Rodman Philbrick is a great novel with loads of action and adventure to keep readers going, although the sadness at the end will call you back to modern reality and how the world is shaped.
  • The book is a beautiful blend of suspense, comedy, tragedy, and wisdom, with the ingredients to generate empathy and help young readers accept kids who may seem different.

Why Choose this Best Book for 5th-Grade Boys: 

  • Although suspenseful, the author still finds a way to make each chapter enjoyable and blend with the next.
  • It’s an exciting story of triumph over imperfection, fear, and shame.
On Sale
Freak the Mighty (Scholastic Gold)
  • Philbrick, Rodman (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 192 Pages - 06/01/2001 (Publication Date) - Scholastic Paperbacks (Publisher)

Last update: 2024-05-22


Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli

Let’s start by commending Jerry Spinelli on the number of interesting books he’s written for 5th graders, which often makes it hard to decide which of his books to include in any list. However, we’ve chosen Maniac Magee because of how deeply it digs into several important and engaging themes.

The book contains the story of a young boy, Jefferey Lionel Magee, who had to run into a town where no one recognized him because he had nowhere to run to. Unfortunately, the new town is renowned for its racial division, as it has whites and blacks living at different ends of the town.

Jefferey Magee (Maniac) would come into the town and begin to make a mark. His ability to do everything helped him stand out as the story of a once helpless boy who changed the lives of a racially divided small town unfolds.

What Makes It Unique:

  • The writing style is fairly simplistic, and the chapters are short enough to compensate for the initial slow pace at the book’s beginning.
  • Although designed to be a middle-grade novel, Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli still explores themes of racism, poverty, and inequality with great detail.

Why Choose this Best Book for 5th-Grade Boys:

  • It is easy to read and has rich details and opportunities to help 5th-grade readers think beyond the text.
  • It’s a heart warming book that shows how children can see through boundaries set by adults.
On Sale
Maniac Magee (Newbery Medal Winner)
  • Spinelli, Jerry (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 180 Pages - 11/01/1999 (Publication Date) - Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (Publisher)

Last update: 2024-05-22


How to Choose the Best Books for 5th-Grade Boys?

Now that we’ve talked so much about 5th-grade reading-level books, you’re probably wondering which to choose. With so many famous books for 5th graders out there, it takes more than a careful look to find the perfect option for yourself. Never forget that what’s perfect for one child may not be so great for another. Therefore, due diligence is needed. The right answer to the following questions can point you to the right reading book for your young adult.

What are Your Child’s Interests?

A good place to start your search is by carefully reviewing your child’s interests. Are they already showing interest in politics and national matters? Are they science-inclined? Picking a book that deals with these themes can be a great way to get your child to read.

What is Their Reading Level?

While choosing a book for your kid, it is important to consider their reading level. Why? Buying a very difficult book can frustrate them and make them less interested. On the other hand, excessively easy books can bore and discourage them from reading. Fortunately, there are many ways to assess your child’s reading level, but the best way is to contact their teacher or a trained expert to help.

Is the Book Recommended by Trusted Sources?

The many available book review sites today may make getting the best recommendations for your kid’s reading books more difficult. So, how do you know a trusted source? Typically, top-quality sources will leave a trail of evidence for you to follow to verify their facts. Some of such evidence is reviews from past users. The more positive reviews a forum has, the more likely it is to suggest the right book for tweens.

What is Your Budget?

Although often overlooked, budget is such an important determinant of any purchase. Books vary in size and contents. So, as expected, they don’t go for the same price. However, we strongly advise against making price the sole determinant of your purchase. Always find the best balance between price, content, and quality when choosing a reading book for your child.

Wrapping Things Up: The Best Books for 5th Grade Boys

By 5th grade, kids become typically more curious about their environment and the things happening around them. Therefore, it’s not surprising to see them become more inquisitive at this time, opening every book they see. Guiding them on the right path involves introducing them to the right books for their level. Fortunately, there are so many 5th-grade reading-level books for you to choose from. We’ve reviewed some of them and explained everything you should know about them in this article.

However, if you don’t have time to read all our reviews or are unsure about which to choose, you can just choose our favorite pick, The Alchemyst: The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel by Michael Scott. This fantasy series offers great depth and intricacy into historical figures that 5th graders can relate to. Our runners-up, Harbor Me by Jacqueline Woodson, offers a stunning and inspiring story of how much America’s social and political challenges can affect children.

Because you read this post, you may also like our other book reviews here:

> The Best Books for 5th Grade Girls

> The Best Middle School Read Alouds

> The Best Historical Fiction for Kids

> The Best Book Series for 6th Grade Boys

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Professor Conquer

Professor Conquer started Conquer Your Exam in 2018 to help students feel more confident and better prepared for their tough tests. Prof excelled in high school, graduating top of his class and receiving admissions into several Ivy League and top 15 schools. He has helped many students through the years tutoring and mentoring K-12, consulting seniors through the college admissions process, and writing extensive how-to guides for school.

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