Cool Summer Reads 2022 (Grades 3-5)

By Skokie Staff Youth Services

Mysteries, friendships, vampires and dragons, a magical train, two goats, two elephants, a life-changing game, and more. This year's books will keep you guessing, make you laugh, and inspire you.

  • Amari and the Night Brothers

    2021 by Alston, B. B.

    Thirteen-year-old Amari gets an invitation from her missing brother to join the Bureau of Supernatural Affairs and join the fight against an evil magician.

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  • Marshmallow & Jordan

    2021 by Chau, Alina

    Jordan's days as the star player for her school's basketball team ended when an accident left her paralyzed. She is still the team captain, but her competition days seem to be behind her until an encounter with a mysterious elephant, who she names Marshmallow, helps Jordan discover a brand new sport.

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  • The Beatryce Prophecy

    2021 by DiCamillo, Kate

    In a time of war, a mysterious child appears at the monastery of the Order of the Chronicles of Sorrowing. Gentle Brother Edik finds the girl, Beatryce, curled in a stall, wracked with fever, coated in dirt and blood, and holding fast to the ear of a goat. As the monk nurses Beatryce to health, he uncovers her dangerous secret, one that imperils them all.

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  • Long Distance

    2021 by Gardner, Whitney

    Vega's summer vacation is not going well. When her parents decide it's time to pack up and leave her hometown of Portland, Oregon, behind for boring Seattle, Washington, Vega is more than upset--she's downright miserable. Forced to leave her one and only best friend Halley behind, Vega is convinced she'll never make another friend.

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  • The Silver Arrow

    2020 by Grossman, Lev

    Kate's humdrum life is transformed when her eccentric Uncle Herbert brings her a colossal locomotive train, the Silver Arrow, as her 11th birthday gift, leading her and her younger brother on a mysterious quest.

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  • FACTopia! Follow the Trail of 400 Facts

    2021 by Hale, Kate

    Every fact is connected in surprising and hilarious ways. Follow a wacky trail that hops from facts about dinosaurs to eggs to breakfasts to goats! And there isn't just one trail through these facts. Sometimes your path branches, and you can choose to jump to a completely different (but still connected) part of FACTopia! Where will your curiosity take you?

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  • Black Boy Joy


    From 17 acclaimed Black male and nonbinary authors comes a vibrant collection of stories, comics, and poems about the power of joy and the wonders of Black boyhood.

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  • Garlic & the Vampire

    2021 by Paulsen, Bree

    Garlic must believe in herself to confront a bloodthirsty vampire who has moved into a nearby castle in this humorous and heartwarming story, reminding readers that strangers are not always as scary as they seem.

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  • Better with Butter

    2021 by Piontek, Victoria

    Afraid of absolutely everything, 12-year-old Marvel momentarily forgets her anxiety when she rescues a fainting goat named Butter. She must fight for her new friend when told she might have to give up Butter forever.

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  • Stuntboy, in the Meantime

    2021 by Reynolds, Jason

    Portico Reeves' secret identity as Stuntboy allows him to use his superpower to keep everybody safe, but when his superhero parents start fighting a lot, he feels the responsibility to save them.

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  • The Elephant's Girl

    2020 by Rimington, Celesta

    Twelve-year-old Lexington, an orphan raised in a zoo, spends a summer cementing friendships, growing closer to the elephant that saved her life, and learning about her family and herself.

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  • Lotería

    2021 by Valenti, Karla

    In Oaxaca City, Mexico, ancient friends "Life" and "Death" discuss free will while engaged in a game of chance, using 11-year-old Clara as a pawn in their game, moving inevitably toward her fate.

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