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Summer Reading: Middle Grade Book Recommendations from Kirsten Marion

In the first instalment of the Common Deer Press summer reading recommendations list, Kirsten Marion shares her top middle grade books. Kirsten is the Canadian author of the Lucy and Dee series, which follow two friends through a fantasy land filled with challenges and adventures.

Text "Summer Reading Recommendations" against a background of illustrated books

The Best Middle Grade Books For Summer Reading

Ah, summertime. I used to love summer as a kid – all day outside and every

evening a good book. I’ve always favoured books with a touch (or a lot) of magic in

them. This shows up in my own writing as well as the books I recommend for a summer read for a middle grade reader.

  1. The Secret Zoo, by Bryan Chick

  2. Wish, by Barbara O’Connor

  3. Restart, by Gordon Corman

  4. The Silk Road, by Kirsten Marion

  5. His Dark Materials, by Phillip Pullman – 3 book set

  6. An Encrypted Clue, by David Cole

  7. The Girl Who Looked Beyond the Stars, by L.B. Anne

  8. The Girl Who Drank the Moon, by Kelly Barnhill

  9. The Triangle Secret, by David Cole

  10. The Forbidden Library, by Django Wexler

May your young reader have many hours of happiness curled up with one of

these titles!

My book: The Caves of Wonder (Book 2 in the Lucy & Dee series)

The cover of Caves of Wonder, a middle grade book

Lucy and Dee are trapped and on the run in the magical world of Sericea with the young emperor Yidi as they flee his stepmother Xixi, the sorceress queen.

Hiding their true identities to protect both themselves and their new friend Mai, the group must make the hazardous trip across Sericea to the Caves of Wonder to find the White Tiger, a fabled warrior who could help them defeat Xixi.

Along their risky journey, developing talents and rumours of revolution challenge their resolve and friendship.

Dangers lurk around every corner, and if Lucy, Dee, and Yidi can’t face them together, their lives and the very fate of Sericea will be in peril.

With its gripping plot and vibrant imagery, The Caves of Wonder is sure to captivate the imagination of all young readers who love a good hero's journey.

Kirsten Marion

Kirsten Marion completed undergraduate studies in English and Classics and a postgraduate degree in psychology. She spent decades travelling the world and has lived on three continents. This gives her a unique mix of experiences to colour her imaginary worlds. She currently lives in Victoria, Canada.

Visit Kirsten at, on Instagram @kirstenlmarion, or on Twitter @kirsten_marion.


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