Staff Picks

A World of Fantasy

Some of our favorite fantasy stories for school-age children.

Children's Services Staff

Older Elementary

A Wizard of Earthsea     A Wizard of Earthsea    
Ursula K. Le Guin
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Le)
Earthsea: book 1

Ged unleashes a terrible evil - is he a good enough wizard to stop it? (First in the Earthsea cycle.)

Airborn     Airborn    
Kenneth Oppel
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Oppel)

Matt, a young cabin boy aboard an airship, and Kate, a wealthy young girl traveling with her chaperone, team up to search for the existence of mysterious winged creatures reportedly living hundreds of feet above the Earth's surface. (This book is followed by Skybreaker and Starclimber.)

Artemis Fowl     Artemis Fowl    
Eoin Colfer
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Colfer)
Artemis Fowl: book 1

When a twelve-year-old evil genius tries to restore his family fortune by capturing a fairy and demanding a ransom in gold, the fairies fight back with magic, technology, and a particularly nasty troll.

Breadcrumbs     Breadcrumbs    
Anne Ursu
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Ursu)

Hazel and Jack are best friends until an accident with a magical mirror and a run-in with a villainous queen find Hazel on her own, entering an enchanted wood in the hopes of saving Jack's life.

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory     Charlie and the Chocolate Factory    
Roald Dahl
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Dahl)

Join Charlie and his grandfather on a tour through the candy factory of the mysterious Willy Wonka. (Continue with Charlie's adventures in Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator.)

Dealing With Dragons     Dealing With Dragons    
Patricia C. Wrede
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Wrede)
Enchanted forest chronicles: book 1

Here's one Princess that would rather live with dragons than be rescued. (First in the Enchanted Forest Chronicles.)

Fly by Night     Fly by Night    
Frances Hardinge
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Ha)

Mosca Mye and her homicidal goose, Saracen, travel to the city of Mandelion on the heels of smooth-talking con-man, Eponymous Clent.

Horns and Wrinkles     Horns and Wrinkles    
Joseph Helgerson
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Helgers)

Along a magic-saturated stretch of the Mississippi River near Blue Wing, Minnesota, twelve-year-old Claire and her bullying cousin Duke are drawn into an adventure involving Bodacious Deepthink the Great Rock Troll, a helpful fairy, and a group of trolls searching for their fathers.

Howl's Moving Castle     Howl's Moving Castle    
Diana Wynne Jones
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Jones)

Sophie is resigned to a dull life - until she becomes a wizard's cleaning lady. (This book is followed by Castles in the Air and House of Many Ways.)

Inkheart     Inkheart    
Cornelia Funke
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Funke)

Twelve-year-old Meggie learns that her father, who repairs and binds books for a living, can "read" fictional characters to life when one of those characters abducts them and tries to force him into service. (First in the Inkheart series.)

Knight's Castle     Knight's Castle    
Edward Eager
    (Juvenile Classics - J Eager)

Four children find a way to go back into the time of Ivanhoe and Robin Hood. (One of several Magic tales by the same author.)

Savvy     Savvy    
Ingrid Law
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Law)

Recounts the adventures of Mibs Beaumont, whose thirteenth birthday has revealed her "savvy"--a magical power unique to each member of her family--just as her father is injured in a terrible accident.

The Book of Three     The Book of Three    
Alexander Lloyd
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Al)
Chronicles of Prydain: book 1

Taran, the assistant pig-keeper, goes on a dangerous mission to save his beloved homeland. (First in the Prydain Chronicles.)

The Dark Is Rising     The Dark Is Rising    
Susan Cooper
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Cooper)
Dark is rising sequence: book 2

Will Stanton finds that he is one of the Old Ones, and must seek the six Signs to triumph over the Dark.  (The second of The Dark is Rising sequence.  The first is Over Sea, Under Stone.)

The Golden Compass     The Golden Compass    
Philip Pullman
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Pullman)
His dark materials: book 1

Can Lyra and her animal daemon rescue the children kidnapped by the evil Gobblers? (First in His Dark Materials trilogy.)

The Hero and the Crown     The Hero and the Crown    
Robin McKinley
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Mckinle)

Aerin, with the guidance of the wizard Luthe and the help of the blue sword, wins the birthright due her as the daughter of the Damarian king and witchwoman of the mysterious, demon-haunted North. (This book is the prequel to The Blue Sword.)

The Lightning Thief     The Lightning Thief    
Rick Riordan
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Riordan)
Percy Jackson and the Olympians: book 1

Twelve-year-old Percy Jackson learns he is a demigod, the son of a mortal woman and Poseidon, god of the sea. His mother sends him to a summer camp for demigods where he and his new friends set out on a quest to prevent a war between the gods. (First in the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series.)

The Monsters of Morley Manor     The Monsters of Morley Manor    
Bruce Coville
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Coville)

Anthony and his younger sister discover that the monster figures he got in an unusual box at an estate sale are alive, but they have no way of knowing that the "monsters" will lead them on fantastical adventures to other worlds in an effort to try to save Earth.

The Sea of Trolls     The Sea of Trolls    
Nancy Farmer
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Farmer)

After Jack becomes apprenticed to a Druid bard, he and his sister Lucy are captured by Viking Berserkers and taken to the home of King Ivar the Boneless and his half-troll queen, leading Jack to undertake a vital quest to Jotunheim, home of the trolls.

The Silver Bowl     The Silver Bowl    
Diane Stanley
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Stanley)

From the age of seven when she became scullery maid in a castle, Molly has seen visions of the future which, years later, lead her and friend Tobias on an adventure to keep Alaric, the heir to the throne, safe from a curse.

The Squire's Tale     The Squire's Tale    
Gerald Morris
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Morris)

In medieval England, fourteen-year-old Terence finds his tranquil existence suddenly changed when he becomes the squire of the young Gawain of Orkney and accompanies him on a long quest. Look for more Squire's Tales titles.

Thora: A Half-Mermaid Tale     Thora: A Half-Mermaid Tale    
Gillian Johnson
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Johnson)

Ten-year-old Thora, daughter of a mermaid mother and a human father, must save her mother who has been captured by the greedy real estate developer, Frooty de Mare. (Read more about Thora in Thora and the Green Sea-Unicorn.)

Wee Free Men     Wee Free Men    
Terry Pratchett
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Pratche)

A young witch-to-be named Tiffany teams up with the Wee Free Men, a clan of six-inch-high blue men, to rescue her baby brother and ward off a sinister invasion from Fairyland. (Read more about Tiffany in A Hat Full of Sky.)

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon     Where the Mountain Meets the Moon    
Grace Lin
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Lin)

Minli, an adventurous girl from a poor village, buys a magical goldfish, and then joins a dragon who cannot fly on a quest to find the Old Man of the Moon in hopes of bringing life to Fruitless Mountain and freshness to Jade River.

Younger Elementary

Knights of the Kitchen Table     Knights of the Kitchen Table    
Jon Scieszka
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Scieszk)
Time warp trio: book 1

Joe receives a magic book for his birthday present from his uncle. Joe, Fred, and Sam are transported to a time when evil knights, fire-breathing dragons, and vile-smelling giants roamed the land. (First in the Time Warp Trio series.)

Moonsilver     Moonsilver    
Kathleen Duey
    (Juvenile First Chapter Books - J Duey)
Unicorn's secret: book 1

Heart, a foundling who was discovered five years earlier wrapped in a unicorn-embroidered blanket, finds a pregnant white mare in the woods and struggle to keep the mare and her colt safe and well. (First in the Unicorn's Secret series.)

The Dragon of Doom     The Dragon of Doom    
Bruce Coville
    (Juvenile First Chapter Books - J Co)
Moongobble and me: book 1.

Life in the village of Pigbone is boring until an aspiring magician and his talking toad come to town and ask Edward to help them slay the Dragon of Doom.  (First in the Moongobble and Me series.)

The Littles     The Littles    
John Peterson
    (Juvenile First Chapter Books - J Peterso)

A tiny family has a variety of adventures in their lives under the Bigg's house. (First in the Littles series.)

The Magician's Boy     The Magician's Boy    
Susan Cooper
    (Juvenile First Chapter Books - J Co)

Follows the adventures of a magician's assistant in the strange land of Story.

The Misfortune Cookie     The Misfortune Cookie    
Dan Greenburg
    (Juvenile First Chapter Books - J Greenbu)
The Zack files: book 13

Zack visits a very strange Chinese restaurant called Wun Dum Guy and finds that the fortunes in his fortune cookies start coming true. (Part of the Zack Files series.)

The New Kid at School     The New Kid at School    
Kate McMullan
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Mcmulla)
Dragon Slayers' Academy: book 1

Wiglaf is off to Dragon Slayers' Academy and in for a first day of school he will never forget. (First in the Dragon Slayers' Academy series.)

Trolls Go Home!     Trolls Go Home!    
Alan MacDonald
    (Juvenile Fiction - J Macdona)

When the Trolls move next door to the Priddles, both families find the other strange, which causes many misunderstandings. (First in the Troll Trouble series.)