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Great Reads for Reluctant Readers

Research proves that reading regularly stimulates the brain, builds background knowledge, and increases vocabulary and comprehension. But too often, reading takes a back seat to television, video games, and cell phones. I'd like to change that, and I'd like to make picking up a book whenever there's spare time a natural reaction of our 7th graders. And it starts by picking up high-interest titles for our reluctant readers. Listed below are some titles that can make even the most reluctant reader pick one up:

Fantasy/Science Fiction: The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins (The Hunger Games, Catching Fire, and Mockingjay); Dragon's Keep by Janet Lee Carey

Mystery: The London Eye Mystery, by Siobhan Dowd, Never Trust a Dead Man by Vivian Vande Velde, Burning Up by Caroline Cooney

Sports: Players by Joyce Sweeney, Heat by Matt Lupica, Westling Sturbridge by Rich Wallace, Ball Don't Lie by Matt de la Pena, Becoming Joe DiMaggio by Maria Testa

Humor: Son of the Mob by Gordon Korman, Schooled by Gordon Korman, Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney.

Realistic Fiction: A Thousand Never Evers by Shana Burg, Zen and the Art of Faking It by Jordan Sonnenblick, Someone Named Eva by Joan Wolf.

Non-fiction: Shark Girl by Kelly Bingham

Other great books can be found on the Maryland Black-Eyed Susan lists.