The Best High Lexile Books for Middle School

This post may contain affiliate links, meaning we get a commission if you make a purchase through our links, at no cost to you.

Spread the love

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on reddit
Reddit
Share on pinterest
Pinterest

Are you looking for the best high-level Lexile books for middle school? We will explain what Lexile is and how it works, the difference between 800 Lexile level books and 1000 Lexile level books for middle school, and how to choose the best Lexile books.

Lexile helps you find books that match your reading ability by assessing both your reading level and texts on the same scale. There is no particular test, but Lexile partners with more than 65 other reading tests that can convert student’s results into the Lexile scale. Ask your teacher or check your latest reading assessment to see if you’ve received a Lexile measure. Over 100 million books and websites have been assessed to determine their Lexile level. Every book level is shown by a number (from 450 to 2200), letter L (for Lexile), and sometimes by other letters (BR – beginner reader, NP – non-prose, etc.).

A special study assigned a specific Lexile range to each grade. In this post, you will find the most recommended challenging books for middle schoolers that match their grades. There is some useful advice at the end of this post if you want to learn more about choosing the best Lexile books.

Our Top Pick
The Blue Sword (Newbery Honor Roll)
Top #2 Pick
The Power of One: Daisy Bates and the Little Rock Nine (Golden Kite Honors)
Top #3 Pick
Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mt. Everest Disaster
Top #4 Pick
Little Women
Book Title
The Blue Sword
The Power of One: Daisy Bates and the Little Rock Nine
Into Thin Air
Little Women
Prime Eligible?
-
-
Our Top Pick
The Blue Sword (Newbery Honor Roll)
Book Title
The Blue Sword
Prime Eligible?
Top #2 Pick
The Power of One: Daisy Bates and the Little Rock Nine (Golden Kite Honors)
Book Title
The Power of One: Daisy Bates and the Little Rock Nine
Prime Eligible?
-
Top #3 Pick
Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mt. Everest Disaster
Book Title
Into Thin Air
Prime Eligible?
Top #4 Pick
Little Women
Book Title
Little Women
Prime Eligible?
-

Last update: 2021-07-28

The Best Books with a Lexile of 1030 to 1340 for 6th Graders

The Blue Sword by Robin McKinley (Lexile level – 1030L.)

It is the first book in 2 book series Damar. This fantasy novel is about the orphaned girl Harry who comes to live in a desert country Damar. The Homelanders and mysterious Free Hillfolk share Damar. She has always felt like an outsider and dreams about climbing the mountains where Hillfolk live. Harry heard that Hillfolk possess strange powers. Then she is kidnaped by the Hillfolk King and discovers her own magical abilities.

The Hero and the Crown, rated 1050L, is the second book in the series, set in the same location but in an earlier time. You can read the books in any order.

Why Choose this Book:

  • This story is about a young woman who feels insignificant, not belonging, and invisible. But she finds the strength to discover her true self and where she belongs.
  • Even though the plot is familiar, you will enjoy unexpected twists, sophisticated writing style, vivid descriptions of the mysterious lands, and well-developed characters.

What Makes this Book Unique:

  • It may sound like an adventure story, but, in fact, it’s a classic coming-of-age novel.
  • This book is based on the history of Anglo-Afghan conflict and British Colonialism. But the main focus is not political but on the personality of the main character.
The Blue Sword (Newbery Honor Roll)
  • Puffin
  • McKinley, Robin (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)

Last update: 2021-07-28


The Incredible Journey by Sheila Burnford (Lexile level – 1320L.)

The story is about two dogs and a cat, whose owner left them with a friend for a few months. They managed to get out, and they follow their instincts to find their owners. The trip is more than 300 miles, and they face starvation, harsh condition, and unpleasant encounters.

Why Choose this Book:

  • First published in 1961, this book is now a classic. Anyone who owns or wants a pet, has children, is a child, loves animals regardless of their age will enjoy this award-winning story.
  • It is not a fantasy book in any way, animals don’t talk, but they communicate with the language of instincts. The book is written in a rich, sophisticated language.

What Makes this Book Unique:

  • There is a Disney movie made based on this book. But as always, the book is much better.
  • We learn a lot about our pets’ capabilities that seem so vulnerable and in need of our protection.
The Incredible Journey
  • Yearling Books
  • Burnford, Sheila (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)

Last update: 2021-07-28


The Best Books with a Lexile of 1095 to 1410 for 7th Graders

The Power of One: Daisy Bates and the Little Rock Nine by Dennis Brindell Fradin, Judith Bloom Fradin (Lexile level – 1110L.)

This book is more than a biography of Daisy Bates. It is an inspiring book about the determination and courage of the woman who faced prejudice. Daisy Bates was an activist in Arkansas and a mentor for the nine African American students at Little Rock High School. They were discriminated and prevented from entering the school on their first day in 1957.

Why Choose this Book:

  • The text is well structured, accessible, and appropriate for young readers. The chronology is consistent. You can use index, endnotes, and bibliography for references.
  • For accurate information, the authors researched numerous archives, interviewed members of the Littles Rock Nine, Bates’ relatives, and experts of the Little Rock Nine Crisis. Pictures of some texts and people are included in the book.

What Makes this Book Unique:

  • It is a chronicle of the events in Daisy Bates’ life that her to become such an essential person in American History. The authors also analyze the social and political unrest of the time.
  • Yes, the book is painful and brutal. It will make you both ashamed and proud of America. But it gives hope, opens our eyes, and is a must-read for every person interested in history.
On Sale
The Power of One: Daisy Bates and the Little Rock Nine (Golden Kite Honors)
  • Used Book in Good Condition
  • Hardcover Book
  • Fradin, Judith Bloom (Author)

Last update: 2021-07-28


The Story of King Arthur and His Knights by Howard Pyle (Lexile level – 1300L.)

While there are many editions of the book, we highly recommend the one with ISBN: 9780486214450. Pyle is a master of retelling the legends about King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.

Why Choose this Book:

  • This edition is the most comprehensive for children as the book is more about the adventures with many unexpected twists with almost no love drama.
  • Even though the author’s language is old-fashioned and contains many poetical sounding elements, it is not as difficult as Shakespeare’s.

What Makes this Book Unique:

  • The author himself beautifully illustrated the book. Forty-one drawings are vivid and create the atmosphere of medieval times.
  • This edition is great for introducing children to Arthurian legends and European history.
On Sale
The Story of King Arthur and His Knights
  • Audible Audiobook
  • Howard Pyle (Author) - David Thorn (Narrator)
  • English (Publication Language)

Last update: 2021-07-28


The Best Books with a Lexile of 1155 to 1470 for 8th Graders

Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer (Lexile level – 1320L.)

Krakauer is a writer who climbed Everest and survived one of the greatest disasters on its summit. In this book, he heartbreakingly described the story of survival and humanity.

Why Choose this Book:

  • This book reads like a fiction novel even though it documents a real story.
  • There are some mountaineering and medical terminology and some technical details. But you don’t need to know anything about climbing to read this book. Note that the deaths of characters are vividly described and bring a lot of sadness.

What Makes this Book Unique:

  • There are other side stories of other climbers included in the book.
  • The author mostly stays within his own experience, using a third-person perspective to describe what happened to others when he wasn’t present.
On Sale
Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mt. Everest Disaster
  • Author: Jon Krakauer
  • ISBN: 9780385494786
  • Jon Krakauer (Author)

Last update: 2021-07-28


Edgar Allan Poe, Stories and Poems (Lexile level – 1310L.)

You may have read a few of Poe’s stories or heard that he was weird, and his works are scary. But he was a genius whose stories inspired many other writers and framed modern literature. This collection is perfect for new readers and devoted fans.

Why Choose this Book:

  • It is a challenging reading because of the dark mystery and poetic language. But it’s perfect for winter and fall evenings.
  • The stories are carefully plotted, and sometimes Poe would even write what effect he wanted to achieve.

What Makes this Book Unique:

  • Even if you didn’t like Poe’s stories at school, try reading this collection. You will be surprised that the same person wrote these stories. You will like many of the least popular ones like “The Oblong Box,” “The Mystery of Marie Roget.”
  • If you read these stories without digging a little deeper, they are just scary tales for kids. You have to read between the lines!
On Sale
Complete Stories and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe
  • short stories
  • Hardcover Book
  • Poe, Edgar Allan (Author)

Last update: 2021-07-28


The Best Books with a Lexile of 1200 or Higher

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott (Lexile level – 1300L.)

This timeless literature classic about four “little women” living in Civil War times is a must-read. Plus, if you are looking for a challenging book, this is a perfect find.

Why Choose this Book:

  • The book was written in the 19th century, and its language is formal-sounding with many sweet dialogues. It creates an atmosphere and gives more personality to the characters.
  • The characters are well-developed and realistic, unlike in other books written at that period.

What Makes this Book Unique:

  • This book has become a classic for a reason. There is love, family, sisterhood, feminism, happiness, respect, thankfulness, kindness, solidarity, death, separation, social expectation, personal growth, and anything we are struggling with to this day.
  • The book was written right after the Civil War, so you will learn many historical facts and social norms of the time.
Little Women
  • Amazon Kindle Edition
  • Alcott, Louisa May (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)

Last update: 2021-07-28


Tales of Beedle the Bard by J.K. Rowling (Lexile level – 1230L.)

This book is a collection of five stories that wizarding children grow up reading, just like un-wizarding kids grow up with Cinderella. The book is one of Harry Potter’s course books. But you will appreciate the tales even if you haven’t read any of the Harry Potter books as it isn’t connected to any events.

Why Choose this Book:

  • You will be surprised that a modern author could write tales that feel as magical and old as Grimm’s or other tales you grew up with.
  • The tales are dark and sometimes violent, so we don’t recommend reading them to younger or sensitive kids. But they have incredible morals.

What Makes this Book Unique:

  • For Potter’s fans: Dumbledore’s comments accompany each tale, and The Tale of the Three Brothers is included.
  • These stories are not similar to any other tales you may be familiar with. The plot is 100% original.
On Sale
The The Tales of Beedle the Bard (Harry Potter)
  • ARTHUR A LEVINE
  • Hardcover Book
  • Rowling, J. K. (Author)

Last update: 2021-07-28


How to Choose the Best Lexile Books for Middle School for You

All these levels and books may be a little confusing. To decide what book is best for you, follow a few steps:

  • Determine your Lexile reading level or decide what text level is best for you. To determine your level, take one of the 65 standardized tests or get the results of your most recently taken test. If you don’t want to take a test, simply try checking the level of the book you think is most suitable for your reading level. Simply follow the Lexile measures by grades. For example, 800 Lexile level books are best from 4th to 6th grade, 900 Lexile level books – from 5th to 7th grade, etc.
  • To find a book, use Lexile Find A Book. You can enter the desired Lexile level, select book categories that interest you, apply other filters to find a perfect book, add the books you like to the reading list.
  • Try choosing books withing your Lexile level. This way, you will find a challenging book and read it without frustration.
  • Make sure that the book you pick is age-appropriate. The Lexile measure is used only to determine the difficulty of the text, not its content. Lexile codes can sometimes help you with age-appropriate content. AD is Adult Directed, GN – graphic novel, IG – illustrated guide, NC – Non-Conforming (for high-level readers who need age-appropriate content), HL – High-Low (less complicated text for older students).
  • Don’t be scared that the content of books with a Lexile of 1200 or higher is for adults or older students only.

Wrapping Things Up: The Best Lexile Books for Middle School

Putting everything together, in this guide we reviewed the following:

Our Top Pick
The Blue Sword (Newbery Honor Roll)
Top #2 Pick
The Power of One: Daisy Bates and the Little Rock Nine (Golden Kite Honors)
Top #3 Pick
Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mt. Everest Disaster
Top #4 Pick
Little Women
Book Title
The Blue Sword
The Power of One: Daisy Bates and the Little Rock Nine
Into Thin Air
Little Women
Prime Eligible?
-
-
Our Top Pick
The Blue Sword (Newbery Honor Roll)
Book Title
The Blue Sword
Prime Eligible?
Top #2 Pick
The Power of One: Daisy Bates and the Little Rock Nine (Golden Kite Honors)
Book Title
The Power of One: Daisy Bates and the Little Rock Nine
Prime Eligible?
-
Top #3 Pick
Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mt. Everest Disaster
Book Title
Into Thin Air
Prime Eligible?
Top #4 Pick
Little Women
Book Title
Little Women
Prime Eligible?
-

Last update: 2021-07-28

Hopefully, this post will help you choose the best high Lexile books for middle school. The Lexile measures of the reviewed books can vary depending on the edition. Use the ISBN to make sure you are getting the right book. To find the Lexile text measure of a specific book, simply use its title or ISBN and insert it in the Lexile Find A Book tool. Don’t choose too complicated books because you may hate reading a book with a dictionary. We recommend 1000 Lexile books for middle schoolers who are confident in reading. If you are an advanced reader, try going for 1100 Lexile books for middle school or even higher. But make sure to choose age-appropriate books that interest you. Enjoying a book is an essential part of your reading process.

If enjoy this post and are an advanced reader, you may also want to check out our high school reading book list here. Or check out our other reading book lists for middle school here.

Professor Conquer
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.

If you found this helpful, help us out by sharing this post!

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on reddit
Reddit
Share on pinterest
Pinterest

Readers of this post also read...