What Is A Middle Grade Book?

Under The EggMeaning Of Maggie

While branching out and exploring juvenile fiction, I’ve noticed the terms “middle grade novel” popping up.  It’s not a term I learned in library school; nor saw when I was a librarian prior to ML’s birth.  So I went to an expert, my colleague who is responsible for the school age books and programs to find out what that term means.  She said, “It’s books written for kids who want something more than simplistic elementary books but aren’t ready for young adult books, which often include serious issues.”  Her theory is this term came out of the tween movement.  Before this books were marketed to children or teens.  Nothing specifically marketed to the sophisticated; but not too sophisticated middle grade students

To get a better handle on what a middle grade novel is I read a few articles.  I liked An Introduction to Middle Grade and Young Adult, Part 1 – Definitions by Malinda Lo.

From time to time I will post about middle grade novels.  I’ve read three excellent ones in the past month. I already blogged about one of them. . . A Snicker of Magic by Natalie Lloyd.  The covers pictured above are two books I can’t wait to tell you about.

2 comments

  1. It’s a bit of a moving target isn’t it? I still am not sure I always know what is what in the genre. There’s also the early middle grade or late middle grade. I seem to be drawn more to middle grade than YA. The novels I am working on are all in the middle grade genre. Not that we will ever see them published! But you know, I’m working on them!

    1. It is a moving target. But then so are 4th-8th graders. I’m more drawn to middle grade novels right now than YA. But I wonder if it’s because my daughter will be reading middle grade books soon. Of course, my favorite books are picture books.

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