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The Most Fun History Books for Middle-Grade Readers

History creates a window into the past and equips kids with the tools to thrive in their future. But sometimes, kids think of history less as story and more as snorey. If your child would rather eat a whole head of broccoli than crack open a book about history, Literati has just the solution: fun, engaging books that make history seem more like an adventure than a homework assignment.

Literati’s favorite history books for middle-grade readers let kids explore the past and question our present. These inventive stories will build your child’s reading comprehension, critical thinking skills, and historical knowledge. Ready to discover the best history books for your middle grader? Here we go!

Book cover for Fantastic Failures

Fantastic Failures: True Stories of People Who Changed the World by Falling Down First

By Luke Reynolds

Fourth, fifth, and sixth grade may come with their fair share of failures. For kids at this age, how to bounce back is one of the most important lessons to be learned! In Fantastic Failures: True Stories of People Who Changed the World by Falling Down First, author Luke Reynolds celebrates how historical figures survived and flourished after they crashed and burned.

Reynolds tells the story of 34 people (and one horse) who used their experience with failure as a source of insight and inspiration. Reynolds explores well-known figures across multiple eras, so your child gets to glimpse various fascinating historical times. They’ll learn more about the epic fails that led to epic triumphs—and perhaps learn how they can do the same for themselves.

Book cover for Women Who Dared

Women Who Dared: 52 Stories of Fearless Daredevils, Adventurers, and Rebels

By Linda Skeers

The daring and adventurous women who have shaped the world are often missing from history textbooks. Supplement your kid’s education with these stories of 52 women who fearlessly pushed boundaries. Read all about Helen Gibson, the first professional stuntwoman, or Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman in space!

From action scenes to astronomical heights, this book covers a multitude of fields and interests, so no matter what your child loves to do, they’ll find tons of inspiration and motivation to challenge themselves. You may just want to invest in a helmet and some elbow pads for your adventurer once they finish this essential anthology of history’s toughest ladies.

Book cover for Strange But True

Strange But True: 10 of the World’s Greatest Mysteries Explained

By Katherine Hulick

In this captivating book, Hulick takes readers on a fact-first journey from UFOs to krakens, with a pit stop in Atlantis. The author provides psychological and scientific explanations behind these mysterious phenomena to help your child learn how science can help discern fact from fiction.

Hulick invites your reader to think scientifically and expand their critical thinking skills. In her pursuit of factual explanations for strange phenomena, she covers a wide variety of historical and scientific topics—your reader will learn a little bit of psychology, geography, and even some marine biology!

History Comes to Life With Literati

After your reader finishes learning about Einstein’s failures, an adventurous stuntwoman, and the secret of Atlantis, they’ll certainly be on the hunt for more of the best history books for kids. With a Literati Kids book subscription, you’ll have your own Library of Alexandria in no time.

Literati book boxes are curated for every individual reader, so your kiddo can unbox stories that are equal parts exciting and enriching. Start by taking the personalization quiz, and we’ll help your reader discover incredible stories that delve deep into their specific interests. As their favorite topics and reading skills evolve, so does curation! Get started today, and make boring books a thing of the past.

Authored by Charlie DeTar
September 15, 2022
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