Friendship Fiction (Grades 4-6)

Allen, Crystal.  Spirit Week Showdow.  J FIC Allen
Nine-year-old Mya is excited about participating in School Spirit Week, even making a pinky promise with her best friend Naomi to be her partner, but when she accidentally gets paired with the biggest bully in school, Mean Connie, Naomi is mad at Mya for breaking her promise, so she must learn to work with Mean Connie and try and get her friend back.

Avi.  Romeo and Juliet–Together (and alive!) at last.  J FIC Avi
The eighth grade’s plan to get two reluctant “lovers” together by means of a classroom production of Shakespeare’s play has some very unexpected results.

Banks, Kate.  Boys Best Friend.  J FIC Banks
Having just moved to Cape Cod, eleven-year-old Lester finds a new friend in George when the two are assigned to work on a school science project testing psychic ability in dogs, based on an experiment developed by Dr. Rupert Sheldrake.

Baskin, Nora Releigh.  Ruby on the Outside.  J FIC Baskin
Eleven-year-old Ruby Danes has a real best friend for the first time ever, but agonizes over whether or not to tell her a secret she has never shared with anyone–that her mother has been in prison since Ruby was five–and over whether to express her anger to her mother.

Bildner, Phil.  A Whole New Ballgame.  J FIC Bildner
From the first morning with their odd new teacher fifth grade is full of shocking surprises for best friends Rip and Red.

Birdseye, Tom.  Just Call Me Stupid.  J FIC Birdseye
Terrified of failing and believing that he is stupid, a fifth grader who has never learned to read begins to believe in himself with the help of an outgoing new girl next door.

Blackmore, Megan Frazer.  The Friendship Riddle.  J FIC Blackmore
When her former best friend gets popular and leaves her behind, sixth-grader Ruth prefers to be alone, studying for the school spelling bee, until she finds a riddle in an old book.

Blume, Judy.  Otherwise Known as Sheila the Great.  J FIC Blume // JPB B
A summer in Tarrytown, N.Y., is a lot of fun for ten-year-old Sheila even though her friends make her face up to some self-truths she doesn’t want to admit.

Bowe, Julie.  My Last Best Friend.  J FIC Bowe (Friends for Keeps SERIES)
After her best friend moves away, fourth-grader Ida May is determined not to make another best friend, despite the efforts of a new girl in her class.

Brown, Jennifer.  How Lunchbox Jones Saved Me From Robots, Traitors, and Missy the Cruel.  J FIC Brown
Luke Abbott’s school is the losing-est school in the history of losing. And that’s just fine for him. He’d rather be at home playing video games and avoiding his older brother Rob and the Greatest Betrayal of All Time. But now he’s being forced to join the robotics team, where surely he’ll help uphold the school’s losing streak.

Byars, Betsy Cromer.  The Pinballs.  JPB B  //  J Fic Byars
Three lonely foster children learn to care about themselves and each other.

Carbone, Elisa Lynn.  Sarah and the Naked Truth.  J FIC Carbone
While ten-year-old Sarah faces some challenges after losing most of her hair in a bubble gum accident, her closest friends Christina and Olivia deal with identity issues of their own, and in the end all learn to stand up to others in order to be true to  themselves.

Carbone, Elisa Lynn.  Starting School With an Enemy.  J FIC Carbone
Worried about finding friends when she moves from Maine to Maryland, ten-year-old Sarah gets off to a bad start by making an enemy of a boy.

Creech, Sharon.  The Boy on the Porch.  J FIC Creech
Discovering a speech-disabled boy asleep on their porch, young couple John and Marta forge a loving bond with the child and come to think of him as their own while wondering about his mysterious past and enjoying the world through his eyes.

DiCamillo, Kate.  Raymie Nightingale.  J FIC DiCamillo
Hoping that if she wins a local beauty pageant her father will come home, Raymie practices twirling a baton and performing good deeds as she is drawn into an unlikely friendship with a drama queen and a saboteur.

Ferguson, Alane. Cricket and the Crackerbox Kid. J FIC Ferguson
Pampered eleven-year-old rich kid Cricket thinks she has finally found a friend in Dominic, who lives in the low-income houses called crackerboxes, until they quarrel over ownership of a dog and their classroom becomes a courtroom to decide who is right.

Giff, Patricia Reilly.  Jubilee.  J FIC Giff
Judith stopped talking long ago when Mom left her in the care of beloved Aunt Cora. Going back into a regular fifth-grade classroom won’t be easy, but she has her Dog and new friend who will help her through.

Giff, Patricia Reilly. Love, from the Fifth Grade Celebrity. J FIC Giff
Casey enjoyed Tracy’s company during summer vacation but becomes increasingly jealous of her irrepressible new friend when she joins Casey’s fifth-grade class.

Grabenstein, Chris.  Riley Mack and the Other Known Troublemakers.  J FIC Grabenstein
Eleven-year-old Riley Mack and his friends, Briana, Mongo, Jake and Jamal outwit the school bully, solve the mystery of who stole the goldendoodle named Poodle, and get evidence to help the FBI catch bank robbers.

Graff, Lisa.  Absolutely Almost.  J FIC Graff
Ten-year-old Albie has never been the smartest, tallest, best at gym, greatest artist, or most musical in his class, as his parents keep reminding him, but new nanny Calista helps him uncover his strengths and take pride in himself.

Hartley, A.J.  Darwen Arkwright and the Peregrine Pact.  J FIC Hartley
Relocating from his tiny English town to his aunt’s home in Atlanta, Georgia, 11-year-old Darwen discovers an enchanting world of magic and monsters on the other side of his closet mirror and teams up with new friends Rich and Alexandra on an adventure that involves the safety of their entire school.

Henkes, Kevin. Words of Stone.  J FIC Henkes // J PB H
Busy trying to deal with his many fears and his troubled feelings for his dead mother, ten-year-old Blaze has his life changed when he meets the boisterous and irresistible Joselle.

Herrera, Robin.  Hope is a Ferris Wheel.  J FIC Herrera
After moving from Oregon to a trailer park in California, ten-year-old Star participates in a poetry club, where she learns some important lessons about herself and her own hopes and dreams for the future.

House, Silas.  Same Sun Here.  J FIC House
A twelve-year-old Indian immigrant in New York City and a Kentucky coal miner’s son become pen pals, and eventually best friends, through a series of revealing letters exploring such topics as environmental activism, immigration, and racism.

Hunt, Lynda Mullaly.  Fish in a Tree.  J FIC Mullaly
Ally’s greatest fear is that everyone will find out she is as dumb as they think she is because she still doesn’t know how to read.

Leavitt, Lindsey.  The Pages Between Us.  J FIC Leavitt
Disappointed to learn that they will not be in many classes together when starting the sixth grade, best friends Piper and Olivia stay in touch by sharing a journal only to realize that their respective goals are taking them further apart.

Levine, Kristin.  The Best Bad Luck I Ever Had.  J FIC Levine
In Moundville, Alabama, in 1917, twelve-year-old Dit hopes the new postmaster will have a son his age, but instead he meets Emma, who is black, and their friendship challenges accepted ways of thinking and leads them to save the life of a condemned man.

Lopez, Diana.  Nothing Up My Sleeve.  J FIC Lopez
When best friends Dominic, Loop, and Z stumble upon the new magic shop in town, they know just how they will spend their summer vacation–mastering cool tricks so they can gain further access into the secret world of magic.

Lord, Cynthia.  A Handful of Stars.  J FIC Lord
When her blind dog slips his collar, twelve-year old Lily meets Salma Santiago, a young Hispanic girl whose migrant family are in Maine for the blueberry-picking season, and, based partly on their mutual love of dogs, the two forge a friendship.

MacKenzie, Ross.  Zac and the Dream Stealers.  J FIC MacKenzie
Eleven-year-old Zac follows his grandmother into the magical world of dreams called Nocturne, where Dream Pirates led by Shadow are spreading dark magic that creates nightmares, and it is up to Zac and new friends to foil the evil plan.

Mackler, Carolyn.  Best Friend Next Door.  J FIC Mackler
Two girls who share a birthday and palindromic names struggle with respective parental challenges and loneliness while gradually overcoming their differences to become close friends.

Nelson, Peter.  Herbert’s Wormhole.  J FIC Nelson
When almost-sixth-grader Alex, a video game fanatic, is forced on a “playdate” with his neighbor Herbert, an inventor, the two travel to the twenty-second century and face off against aliens, who are not as beneficent as most people think. Sequel: Herbert’s Wormhole: The Rise and Fall of El Solo Libre (2012)

O’Connor, Jane. Yours Till Niagara Falls, Abby. J FIC O’Connor
Ten-year-old Abby faces two months of summer camp without her best friend.

Palacio, R.J.  Wonder.  J FIC Palacio
Ten-year-old Auggie Pullman, who was born with extreme facial abnormalities and was not expected to survive, goes from being home-schooled to entering fifth grade at a private middle school in Manhattan, which entails enduring the taunting and fear of his classmates as he struggles to be seen as just another student.

Parenteau, Shirley.  Ship of Dolls.  J FIC Parenteau
It’s 1926, and the one thing eleven-year-old Lexie Lewis wants more than anything is to leave Portland, where she is living with her strict grandparents, and rejoin her mother, a carefree singer in San Francisco. But Mama’s new husband doesn’t think a little girl should live with parents who work all night and sleep all day. Lexie’s class has been raising money to ship a doll to the children of Japan in a friendship exchange, and when Lexie learns that the girl who writes the best letter to accompany the doll will be sent to the farewell ceremony in San Francisco, she knows she just has to be the winner.

Pennypacker, Sara.  The Summer of the Gypsy Moths.  J FIC Pennypacker
A foster child named Angel and twelve-year-old Stella, who are living with Stella’s great-aunt Louise at the Linger Longer Cottage Colony on Cape Cod, secretly assume responsibility for the vacation rentals when Louise unexpectedly dies and the girls are afraid of being returned to the foster care system.

Ray, Delia.  Finding Fortune.  J FIC Ray
Angry with her mother, twelve-year-old runaway Ren finds an unusual boarding house in a nearby ghost town, Fortune, where she meets some interesting people and learns of a forgotten treasure from when the town was famous for buttons made of Mississippi River shells.

Sales, Leila.  Once Was a Time.  J FIC Sales
In World War II England, ten-year-old Lottie is transported via a portal to present day Wisconsin, where she must find her way back to her family and her best friend, Kitty.

Sawyer, Ruth.  Roller Skates.  J FIC Sawyer
Liberated for a year from her parents’ restrictions, ten-year-old Lucinda discovers true freedom in the care of her temporary guardians as she roller skates around the streets of turn-of-the-century New York.

Simon, Coco.  Mia in the Mix.  JPB S (SERIES: Cupcake Diaries)
When the popular girls club takes interest in Mia, she has to decide between being popular and her new cupcake club friends.

Snyder, Laurel.  Penny Dreadful.  J FIC Snyder
When her father suddenly quits his job, the almost ten-year-old , friendless Penny and her neglectful parents leave their privileged life in the city for a ramshackle property in Thrush Junction, Tennessee, where their tenants have never paid rent and their town’s shop include Praise God the Lord Hot Dog Shack Fugate’s Feed Shop and Bridal Store.

Weeks, Sarah.  Oggie Cooder.  J FIC Weeks  (SERIES)
Quirky fourth-grader Oggie Cooder goes from being shunned to everyone’s best friend when his uncanny ability to chew slices of cheese into the shapes of states wins him a slot on a popular television talent show, but he soon learns the perils of being a celebrity–and having a neighbor girl as his manager. SEQUEL: Oggie Cooder, Party Animal

Weeks, Sarah.  Save Me a Seat.  J FIC Weeks
Ravi has just moved to the United States from India and has always been at the top of his class; Joe has lived in the same town his whole life and has learning problems–but when their lives intersect in the first week of fifth grade they are brought together by a common enemy (the biggest bully in their class) and the need to take control of their lives.

Posted in Grades 4-6, Reading Lists and tagged , , , , .