Books for Fourth and Fifth Graders

Titles in this list were recommended by Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh staff. Ask your neighborhood librarian for additional suggestions.

The Brain: The Ultimate Thinking Machine

Provides an inside look at the human brain, the most advanced operating system in the world, by exploring topics such as how our senses work in relation to the brain and how we remember things. Presented in comic book format. Includes glossary. You can also check out this title as eBook on OverDrive/Libby.

Front Desk

Mia Tang has a lot of secrets. Number 1: She lives in a motel, not a big house. Every day, while her immigrant parents clean the rooms, ten-year-old Mia manages the front desk of the Calivista Motel and tends to its guests. Number 2: Her parents hide immigrants. And if the mean motel owner, Mr. Yao, finds out they’ve been letting them stay in the empty rooms for free, the Tangs will be doomed. Number 3: She wants to be a writer. But how can she when her mom thinks she should stick to math because English is not her first language? Will she be able to hold on to her job, help the immigrants and guests, escape Mr. Yao, and go for her dreams? You can also check out this title as eBook on OverDrive/Libby or as eAudio on OverDrive/Libby.

Homerooms and Hall Passes

What do the youth of a mystical land do to relax after battling wizards and finding treasure all day? They play Homerooms & Hall Passes and pretend to be average eighth graders. It’s all fun and games until they’re magically transported into a real middle school and have to learn to survive there. You can also check out this title as eBook on Hoopla or as eAudio on Hoopla.

Knights vs. Dinosaurs

With the realm at peace and few dragons about, the Knights of the Round Table are bored, so Merlin sends them to face the most terrible lizards of all dinosaurs. You can also check out this title as eBook on OverDrive/Libby.


Katya and her Meema are spending another summer at their cottage in Alaska when a chance accident leaves Katya face-to-face with an enormous Kodiak bear, soon to become her closest friend. But when Katya must suddenly return home to Seattle, the two are torn apart, leaving Kodi to do whatever it takes to reunite with his fragile human friend. You can also check out this title as eBook on Hoopla.

New Kid

Instead of sending Jordan to the arts school of his dreams, his parents enroll him in a prestigious private school known for its academics. Jordan turns out to be one of the few kids of color in his entire grade and struggles to find balance between his home life in Washington Heights and his new upscale academy. You can also check out this title as eBook on Hoopla, as eAudio on Hoopla, as eBook on Libby or as eAudio on Libby.

Roll With It

Ellie feels secure in her life. She’s going to be a professional baker, and won’t let anything stop her. But moving to a trailer park to take care of her grandpa throws her for a loop, and the challenge of finding new friends and navigating a new school threatens to overwhelm her. You can also check out this title as eBook on OverDrive/Libby or as eAudio on OverDrive/Libby.

Some Places More Than Others

Amara longs to visit Harlem and her father’s family. When she gets the chance, it’s not as fun an experience as she had hoped. Slowly, she finds a connection with her family history and the place that they call home. You can also check out this title as eBook on OverDrive/Libby.