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10 Wonderful & Unknown Children’s Books for 10 Year Old Girls

Holly Daffurn itcher10 is such an important age. As a child I remember approaching the age with a great deal of excitement. You’re the top of your school, on the cusp of starting high school, immensely sophisticated yet with the wonder of childhood still very much surrounding you. At this age I embraced children’s books that took me to distant lands and celebrated the magic of childhood. From ‘A Snicker of Magic’ to ‘The Absolute Value of Mike’, I’ve put together a list of 10 unique and magical children’s books that are ideal for your 10 year old daughter. ~ Holly Daffurn

Bridging the Gap between Primary and High School

As soon as high school starts, reading will change. Teachers will throw set texts at your children and encourage them to analyse them. They will be introduced to older children who read more grown-up books.

These books for 10 year olds have been chosen because they are the perfect balance of being full of childlike wonder and magic, yet also sophisticated enough for a 10 year old’s inquisitive mind.

10. ‘Unstoppable Octobia May’ (Sharon Flake, 2014)

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“The undertaker is always asking how I’m doing. Like he hopes I’ll get sick again and come to be with him soon…”

Octabia May is a fiesty and adventurous 10 year old, with a heart condition that has given her “a wise soul.” When she goes to stay with her unmarried and unconventional Auntie in her vast boarding house, things take a dramatic turn.

An honest and refreshing look at racism, a heartfelt story and an interesting take on vampires make this a delightful read.

An empowering and enchanting book that will open minds.

9. ‘A Snicker of Magic’ (Natalie Lloyd, 2015)

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“There was still magic in Midnight Gulch. This is how I turned it loose…”

Returning to her mother’s hometown, Felicity is out to find the magic that used to lurk there so she can break the spell that captured her mother’s heart. This is a delightful book that will enchant any young reader. It is ideal for those who still believe in that little spark of magic.

A beautifully-written tale of friendship, magic and the tastiest ice-cream imaginable.

A quirky, inspiring and magical tale about a very special girl.

8. ‘Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer’ (Kelly Jones, 2015)

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“Mom always says it’s a bad idea to tell people what you think while you are still angry. But I bet I’ll be angry for a long time, so I don’t see any point in waiting…”

The interesting format of this book, makes it a great read for reluctant readers or those who struggle with longer chapters. Told in a series of letters to Sophie’s beloved abuela, this book is unlike anything that I’ve read before. Sophie is miserable when she moves out of LA to the farm that her parents have inherited, yet she soon discovers something incredible.

One of the chickens can move objects through the power of its brain alone, and it’s not the only one! Sophie soon devotes her life to caring for her supernatural chickens, a task that is made much harder when a local farmer tries to steal them all.

A spirited and determined heroine leads this fantastically quirky, lively tale.

7. ‘Gone Crazy in Alabama’ (Rita Williams-Garcia, 2015)

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“I can’t stop the dreams. I can’t stop seeing the opened door and the footsteps…”

Three feisty sisters go to Alabama to visit their grandmother and her mother. They soon learn that there is a surprising truth that is keeping their great-grandmother apart from her sister, but they only fully understand the depths of the family bond when a devastating tragedy shatters the family.

Rich prose, complex characters and spellbinding descriptions of rural Alabama make this an unusual and captivating book. The three sisters are aged 12, 10 and 8 making them the ideal companions for a 10 year old girl.

A delightfully witty and moving book that explores the family bond.

6. ‘The Water and The Wild’ (K. E Ormsbee & Elsa Mora, 2015)

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“She had the squinched face of a crow that had rammed its beak into one too many windowpanes…”

The magical story of Lottie and the efforts she will go to in order to save her best friend’s life. Since her parents died, all that Lottie has is Eliot, her best friend in the world and the mysterious letter writer whose identity is unknown. When Eliot develops an illness that even the doctors can’t cure, it looks like all is lost. Until a door to another world opens up in the apple tree, and offers the solution to their problems.

This is a rich, vibrant and enchanting fantasy tale with a very human element to it. Lottie is a lovable protagonist and K. E Ormsbee‘s writing style is absolutely bewitching.

A mystical and enchanting book that is brimming with imaginative flair.

5. ‘New Beginnings (Everyday Angel)’ (Victoria Schwab, 2014)

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“It was easier for her to picture the thing attackingher brother’s body not as a many-syllabled word but as a monster. Monsters could be fought. And Marco was fighting…”

Aria isn’t like other 12 year olds, she’s a guardian angel. She can use her own shadow as a portal, she can magic things up out of thin air and she can improve people’s lives for the better.

To earn her wings she needs to significantly help three different girls. In this book, she befriends Gabby, a shy girl who has turned even quieter since her brother got sick.

This book isn’t sentimental or slushy. It is a poignant and heart-warming portrayal of the adversity of life, and a gentle reminder of how we can help other people just by being there. There is a whole series that make the ideal books for kids age 10.

A book as magical and fantastical as it is beautifully real.

4. ‘The Baking Life of Amelie Day’ (Vanessa Curtis, 2014)

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“I roll my eyes and cross my arms. Underneath, my brain starts to compute in a wild and furious way quite at odds with how my knackered body is feeling…”

This story is all about Amelie Day, a very determined girl with a passion for baking. Unfortunately, she also suffers from Cystic Fibrosis, making her life much harder than that of an average teenager. When she wins a place on Britain’s Best Teen Baker of The Year, she is set on not only competing but taking the prize too.

Her health takes a turn for the worst, making Amelie’s mum fret and the competition seem out of reach.

This story is so empowering and inspirational. Amelie is such a vivid and real character, that you’ll find yourself rooting for her from the off. The ingenious addition of Amelie’s own recipes, makes the whole reading experience so much richer.

Mouth-watering recipes and delicious prose make this book a real treasure.

3. ‘The Tapper Twins go to War (With Each Other)’ (Geoff Rodkey, 2015)

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“Just like World War I, it lasted a lot longer and caused more problems than anyone expected, especially people who were totally innocent and didn’t deserve it (me)…”

This book is so cleverly written. It is told as an oral history of the war between a pair of very passionate twins. Complete with screenshots, text messages, photos, chat logs and online gaming digital art. This is a colourful and exciting way to tell a story.

Girls who would rather play computer games or text their mates will relate to the unique way in which this book is presented. It’s imaginative, so much fun and deliciously current.

An imaginative and humorous book that will grip you from the very first page.

2. ‘Eggs over Evie’ (Alison Jackson, 2010)

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“I could sense her scowl, boring into me through the telephone. Mom was right. That woman did need something sweet…”

When Evie’s celebrity-chef Dad marries a younger second wife and takes the family dog to live with them, Evie is heartbroken. To make matters worse, Evie’s Dad’s wife falls pregnant…with twins.

This is an honest and refreshing look at family conflict and how working through bad times can ultimately mean a richer and more fulfilling life for everyone.

Evie is an adorable character that many will relate to. Her passion for baking leads her to cooking classes where she meets an exciting new friend, and their eccentric aunt.

A heart-warming story full of empathy, emotion, unexpected friendships and overcoming obstacles.

An uplifting tale about a girl coming to terms with her parents’ divorce.

1. ‘The Absolute Value of Mike’ (Kathryn Erskine, 2012)

Image Source: Amazon

“Moo’s white hair stuck straight out, like the wings of the commuter jet I’d just flown in on. Her glasses covered most of her face. The rest of it was giving me an entire-set-of-dentures grin…”

To say that Mike struggles with maths would be an understatement, yet it is the only thing that his dad cares about. Sent to rural Pennsylvania for the summer to prove his worth at engineering camp, Mike makes some unlikely friends and learns far more about life than maths.

This is a beautifully written book about a boy desperately trying to match up to his dad’s expectations, and constantly feeling inadequate. Through meeting new people, he discovers more about himself than he thought possible and the most important thing that he learns is his own true value.

A quirky tale about a very unusual boy.


Discovering Themselves through Books

I chose these books for 10 year olds because they really stood out to me as being valuable at that crucial age between primary school and high school. By the age of ten, many girls feel that they have out-grown primary school yet are not quite ready for the next step.

These books for kids age 10 celebrate being young, the wonder of childhood and the magic that exists if you look hard enough for it. They also cover sophisticated topics that will make young girls think.

It’s so important that ten year old girls feel confident about who they are before they start high school. Books like these will empower them, inspire them and remind them that the only person it is worth being is yourself.

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