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Recommended Reads for KS2 (Junior)

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Best Books for KS2 Children

We’ve hand-picked a list of 30 recommended books for Junior School children. Update your Key Stage 2 classroom library or home book collections with our list of the best books for children aged 7-11, featuring disappearing grown-ups, a robot best friend, a hero on an elephant and a football-loving dog!

This booklist includes books to read with children alongside books for them to read themselves. Featuring popular storytime reads like Matilda, laugh-out-loud choices like You’re a Bad Man, Mr Gum!, thrilling adventure stories like Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief and captivating mysteries like The Highland Falcon Thief, this list really does have something for everyone.

If you’re a parent or teacher looking for the best books for Key Stage 2 children, look no further than our list. Whether you are looking for classic tales, funny read-alouds, new releases or educational reads, we have something to suit every young reader’s interests. Our Key Stage 2 booklist includes both fiction and non-fiction recommendations to help open minds and spark imaginations.

There is also a downloadable checklist and a printable poster, and schools can purchase full packs of these books from Peters or select packs of the Primary books or KS1 books instead.

If you are looking for more specific recommendations, you may like our Year Group Lists (see below) or Curriculum Topic Booklists.

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Popular Stories for KS2

Hannah Gold
 & Levi Pinfold
Chapter book

A beautifully heartfelt and moving story with strong environmental themes. This story highlights the topic of global warming but also draws a picture of the wonderful connection that can develop between children and animals.

When April heads to a remote Arctic island with her father, who is there for scientific research, she’s not sure exactly what to expect. The trip to ‘Bear Island’ has the potential to be a very lonely trip – with endless summer Arctic nights, an isolated wilderness and, according to her father, no actual polar bears left on the island for April to spot despite its name.

Surprisingly, April encounters a real polar bear on the island when nobody else is around, and realises that the bear is in danger. With courage in the face of powerlessness, April embarks upon a quest to get the bear to safety in an adventure that she will never forget.

There’s something magical about this story – from the wonderfully evoked Arctic setting to the glorious friendship that develops between April and the bear. There often seems to be a direct connection and a deep instinct to care that exists between children and the natural world, a connection which is highlighted in the story through how April can make a difference to the plight of the bear despite her feeling of powerlessness. Many young readers who really do care about climate change will relate to April’s frustration at the inaction of many people, to her sadness at the plight of our precious planet and to her desire to make a difference, even through the smallest of actions.

This is a powerful and important story that will stir the heart through its gently unfolding message that places hope in the hands of the young to make a difference in the planet’s future.

Roald Dahl
 & Quentin Blake
Chapter book
Roald Dahl's much-loved Matilda has become a classic children's story, made popular through film and musical adaptations.Matilda Wormwood's father thinks she's a little scab. Matilda's mother spends all afternoon playing bingo. And Matilda's headmistress Miss Trunchbull? Well, she's the worst of all. She is a big bully, who thinks all her pupils are rotten and locks them in the dreaded Chokey. As for Matilda, she's an extraordinary little girl with a magical mind - and now she's had enough. So all these grown-ups had better watch out, because Matilda is going to teach them a lesson they'll never forget.
Tom Fletcher
 & Shane Devries
Chapter book

An adventure story that fans of Roald Dahl will enjoy. The story revolves around the plight of a girl named Lucy, who has been left distraught after her parents suddenly go missing. Lucy soon finds that all of the children on her street seem to be facing the same fate – with their parents disappearing as well. Consequently, the children embark on a rampage, causing havoc in houses and on the street, throwing toilet paper on trees, and creating a mess everywhere.

Lucy is a natural-born leader as well as an instinctive problem solver. Amid the chaos, Lucy takes it upon herself to investigate and locate the missing parents. In her quest for answers, she discovers a mysterious creature called Woleb from the world of Creakers, hidden under her bed. The strange state of the world she discovers leads her to wonder if the Creakers are responsible for the parents’ disappearance.

Lucy teams up with Norman Quirk, a smart and organized boy with multiple scout badges, to formulate a plan to rescue their parents.  Lucy Dungston is a likeable character whose curiosity and determination drive the story forward. Norman Quirk’s sharp wit and intelligence make him an excellent addition to the team. A thrilling adventure follows as the pair try to uncover the truth behind the strange happenings.

Most children have wondered at some time or other if there is another world under their bed, and this story makes a light-hearted fantasy out of a common fear. A brave adventure story coupled with likeable characters and good clean humour makes this a popular choice with Year 3 at storytime.


Cath Howe
Chapter book

Ella on the Outside is a superbly honest debut from Cath Howe, with authentic characters and important themes of friendship, loyalty, self-acceptance and parental responsibility. For me this was a thoroughly enjoyable read and I’m convinced the characters will resonate strongly with lots of readers. As well as the themes of friendship and loyalty, the book also addresses issues of parental responsibility, childhood eczema, mental health and the impact of having an absent parent. This is a gripping and emotive read filled with heart and we recommend it for readers in upper KS2…

Rick Riordan
Chapter book

This is a multi-million selling series that has also been televised with Disney and is hugely popular among fans of action and adventure. Percy Jackson’s modern world is turned upside when he finds out he is descended from Greek gods. What follows is battles with monsters and epic quests in an action-packed series that merges Greek mythology with the modern world. There are also Teachers’ Notes available to download from the publisher.

Kirsty Applebaum
Chapter book

A thoroughly modern narrative about the ethics of artificial intelligence with relatable domestic themes of friendship, family and identity.

With busy working parents, Sarah longs for a pet for company. Her parents agree that some company would be good for Sarah and it soon arrives, but not quite in the form that Sarah was hoping for. Instead, Sarah receives a Jenson & Jenson TrooFriend 560 Mark IV – a robot marketed as an artificially intelligent ‘better choice’ of playmate who is like a human child but does not bully, harm, lie or envy.

It takes Sarah a while to warm up to her new friend, which she names Ivy. At first, Sarah interacts with Ivy only to please Mum, but is quick to flick the off-switch as soon as possible. But slowly, Sarah and Ivy start to become true friends, bonding over hairstyles, clothing and art. Ivy tries to help Sarah with friendship problems at school, and soon Sarah finds herself wondering whether her human-like friend might have feelings of her own. When a fault in Ivy’s model is announced and all TrooFriend 560 Mark IVs are recalled to the factory for destruction, Sarah finds herself embroiled in a battle of android rights that centres around the very essence of what it means to be human.

In the current times, the offer of a robotic companion to entertain the children of busy, working parents would be an easy sell. But when it comes to real relationships and emotions, things are rarely straightforward, and the potential issues of replacing humans with androids emerge early in the plot. The narrative is told from the first-person perspective of TrooFriend robot Ivy, which gives the story a unique edge and immediately plunges the reader into considering the book’s key questions around what gives androids (or anyone) rights, identity and worth. Ivy’s voice develops gradually through the book, from a series of repeated, pre-programmed platitudes to an independent flow of consciousness affected by human connections. The evolution of Ivy’s voice occurs in increments so small – and is so skillfully written – that you hardly notice it happening, as she moves away from her programming and develops a real personality of her own. Ivy’s self-liberation emerges in parallel with Sarah beginning to treat her as an equal rather than an object; this makes a really interesting thread of the plot that could develop into much thought and discussion around wider issues of oppression and human rights.

There’s plenty of humour to be found too in Ivy’s sharp observations about human behaviour and despite the ambitious nature of its themes the story never feels too heavy. It’s a relatively quick read with a gripping storyline, but the questions it raises about human nature, the ethics of artificial intelligence and the complications of android rights will stay in your musings for quite some time after finishing.

Eoin Colfer
Chapter book

Artemis Fowl is now an award-winning fantasy series of books and a huge hit with children in the 9-12 age range. The stories mix supernatural action, thrilling adventure and a good sprinkling of humour. The story follows 12-year-old Artemis, a criminal mastermind, as he plans to kidnap a fairy leader for a ransom of fairy gold, only to find the fairies are armed and ready to fight back. Throughout the series, Artemis finds himself involves in kidnappings, heists and dangerous battles with a host of supernatural beings including goblins, pixies, dwarves and trolls, each with their own quirky characteristics. We recommend this entertaining series for children who love fantasy characters, action-charged adventures and the feeling of getting stuck into a gripping series.

Cressida Cowell
Chapter book
An absolute winner of a story and a brilliant choice for KS2 children in Year 4, 5 or 6. Hiccup Horrendous Haddock the Third is a smallish Viking with a longish name. Hiccup's father is chief of the Hairy Hooligan tribe which means Hiccup is the Hope and the Heir to the Hairy Hooligan throne - but most of the time Hiccup feels like a very ordinary boy, finding it hard to be a Hero.In the first How to Train Your Dragon book, Hiccup must lead ten novices in their initiation into the Hairy Hooligan Tribe. They have to train their dragons or be banished from the tribe FOR EVER!But what if Hiccup's dragon resembles an ickle brown bunny with wings? And has no teeth? The Seadragonus Giganticus Maximus is stirring and wants to devour every Viking on the Isle of Berk . . . Can Hiccup save the tribe - and become a Hero?
Andy Stanton
Chapter book
Shabba me whiskers! It's a bold new look for Mr Gum, the best-selling cult classic, ready for a new generation of nibbleheads.'It's time for action,' said Mr Gum to nobody in particular. 'Nasty action.'Good evening. Mr Gum is a complete horror who hates children, animals, fun and corn on the cob. This book's all about him. And an angry fairy who lives in his bathtub. And Jake the dog, and a little girl called Polly. And there's heroes and sweets and adventures and EVERYTHING.You're a Bad Man, Mr Gum! is the first book in the internationally best-selling series by Andy Stanton, which has won everything from the Blue Peter Book Award (twice) to the Roald Dahl Funny Prize and the Red House Children's Book Award.
Nizrana Farook
Chapter book

An exciting middle-grade adventure from Nizrana Farook filled with atmosphere, suspense and adventure with elements of Robin Hood and Arabian Nights.
Set in the dazzling landscapes of Sri Lanka, The Girl Who Stole an Elephant is the story of a girl called Chaya and her friends Neel and Nour. Quick-fingered Chaya is a young version of Robin Hood; she steals from the rich to help the poor in her village. However, when she steals the Queen’s jewels, things begin to go horribly wrong. Not only does she put herself in grave danger, but her actions also bring harm to her best friend Neel and the people of her village…

Tom Palmer
 & Tom Clohosy Cole
Chapter book Dyslexia-friendly

Best-selling author Tom Palmer has a track record of bringing together his passions for sport and history in popular stories with a high appeal in primary schools. His gripping story, Armistice Runner, brings into the spotlight messenger runners on the front line of World War I. As with all of Tom’s books published by Barrington Stoke, these books are ‘super-readable’ due to their accessible layout including a dyslexia-friendly font and tinted paper. This is a wonderful story to use in KS2 classrooms to explore the history of the World War 1 Armistice.

Shorter Reads for KS2

Holly Webb
 & Ellie Snowdon
Chapter book
Ruby's dad has arrived home with a wonderful surprise - Coco the sausage dog puppy! And when the family go on holiday to the seaside, of course Coco will be coming too. The beach is a thrilling place for a dog - so many sights, smells and holes to dig! Ruby and Coco can't wait to spend the day splashing in the waves and playing in the sand. But disaster strikes when Coco disappears. Suddenly she's lost and all alone on the huge, busy beach ... Will she ever find her way back to Ruby? Worldwide bestseller Holly Webb makes her Barrington Stoke debut with a truly adorable sausage-dog tale!
Phil Earle
 & Elisa Paganelli
Chapter book Dyslexia-friendly

The Dog That Saved the World (Cup) is a thoroughly enjoyable story of a dog and his family. Inspired by events of 1966, Phil Earle brings the legend of the Jules Rimet trophy theft up to date by placing his tale in a contemporary setting with contemporary problems. Being narrated by Pickles the dog, difficult – but real – issues of unemployment, single-parenting, poverty and homelessness are explored with an innocent honesty that makes them accessible and appropriate for younger readers. Despite the underlying struggles and heartaches, this is not a story of sadness, but it is a quick, positive read that is fun and uplifting.

After the ending of the story, there is an author’s note explaining the real-life inspiration behind the book. Fara Williams, England’s most capped women’s footballer, has shown that dreams can come true as she herself was homeless but never without hope because she had football in her life. Elsie is a reflection of Fara – full of hope, determination and undefeated by life’s challenges.

Printed on a dyslexia-friendly font on cream paper, the story is delightfully illustrated by Elisa Paganelli. The drawings are predominantly joyful. showing happy faces and the bond between a family who have lots of love even when they have little else.


A fun, super-readable story of football with much, much more besides.

Andy Shepherd
 & Sara Ogilvie
Chapter book

The first in a series, this hugely entertaining adventure about a small boy and his pet dragon would make a super read-aloud for lower KS2. Tomas is busy in the garden with Grandad, planning which fruits to grow that might be turned into delicious jams or tarts. When Tomas stumbles across a strange tree with curious-looking fruit, he never expects that what might emerge from the fruit is a real live dragon! This is an adventure that is humorous at every turn, but also full of heart. Tomas is a great positive role model for showing how young people can apply curiosity and creativity to the process of growing and nurturing plants and see ‘magic’ in the course.

Illustrated Stories and Graphic Novels

Jeff Kinney
Graphic Novel
Things aren't going well for Greg Heffley . He's been thrust into a new school where undersize weaklings share the corridors with kids who are taller, meaner and already shaving. Along with his friend Rowley, Greg's desperate to prove his new maturity, which only going up a grade can bring. But when Rowley's star starts to rise, will Greg be able to reach the same heights of popularity as his best friend?
The Fan Brothers
From the creators of The Night Gardener , comes a stunning new picture book about a young boy who sets sail to find a place his grandfather told him about... the spot where the ocean meets the sky. It's a good day for sailing. Finn lives by the sea and the sea lives by him. Every time he looks out his window it's a constant reminder of the stories his grandfather told him about the place where the ocean meets the sky. Where whales and jellyfish soar and birds and castles float. Finn's grandfather is gone now but Finn knows the perfect way to honor him. He'll build his own ship and sail out to find this magical place himself! And when he arrives, maybe, just maybe, he'll find something he didn't know he was looking for.
Neill Cameron
Graphic Novel

Mega Robot Bros is a long-running comic strip in The Phoenix, written and illustrated by Neill Cameron. The stories are not available in a series of graphic novels and are huge hits with KS2.

Alex and Freddy are robots and also brothers, doing typical brother things like arguing, going to theme parks and annoying each other at school. The boys band together when a series of robot attacks take place in London and the pair need to work as a team to defeat Evil Robot 23.

An action-packed graphic novel weaving feel-good themes of family and school life with a good scattering of deadly lasers, jet packs, danger and some excellent sidekicks.

Pamela Butchart
 & Thomas Flintham
Chapter book
Hilarious, illustrated school-based antics where everything that happens leads to DRAMA and RUNNING AROUND and even some FAINTING! Izzy and her friends are on a school trip to a big lake. Gary Petrie is excited because the lodges where they're staying have ROBES AND SLIPPERS! The lake is dark and deep and a bit scary. But it's when they open their packed lunches that they know! There's a MONSTER in the lake and it's coming for their CRISPS! Laugh-out-loud fun from Blue Peter Award winners Pamela Butchart and Thomas Flintham.
Elaine Wickson
 & Chris Judge
Graphic Novel
Stan loves everything to do with space, along with a calming, ordered environment, pie charts, and Venn diagrams. His dinosaur-loving younger brother Fred is the opposite: chaotic, messy, prone to leaving snails under Stan's bed and ladybirds in his lunchbox. Surely they must have something in common? As Stanley struggles to cope with his high-maintenance brother and his hair-brained schemes, he charts all the ups and downs of his life in a series of hilarious infographics in this highly-illustrated and visually-appealing book.

Mystery & Detective Stories for KS2

M. G. Leonard & Sam Sedgman
 & Elisa Paganelli
Chapter book

A full-steam-ahead adventure that had me hooked from the get-go. The Highland Falcon Thief is a middle-grade mystery story set on a steam train. With a high spirit of adventuring and a good-and-proper mystery that unfolds with clues and red herrings along the course, this is a brilliantly fun story that is sure to be on track to find itself set among the very best in the children’s mystery genre.

Harrison Beck (Hal) ends up aboard the last-ever journey of a famous royal steam train ‘The Highland Falcon’, unwillingly accompanying his travel-writer uncle while his parents are occupied in hospital having a new baby. Hal doesn’t think much of steam trains – and he is even less impressed when he finds there are no other child passengers on board and no electricity to charge his devices. Before long, Hal finds himself caught up with entertainment of a more old-fashioned kind. A mystery begins to unravel among the passengers – with valuable items disappearing including the princess’s diamond necklace – and Hal begins to record what he notices in his sketchbook. What’s more, Hal befriends a secret stowaway girl called Lenny and the pair set to work to solve the mystery before The Highland Falcon reaches the end of its last-ever journey.

Anna James
Chapter book

Since the disappearance of her mother, Tilly has lived in a bookshop with her grandparents, where she has found comfort amongst the pages of her favourite books. When she discovers her special ability to wander in and out of books alongside her favourite characters, she realises this could hold the key to finding out what really happened to her mother. But she is unnerved by the appearance of the mysterious Enoch Chalk who turns up in the most unexpected of places, taking an unusual interest in Tilly and watching her very closely. Spellbinding and truly magical, the world of Pages & Co is enchanting for readers young and old.

Sophie Cleverly
 & Hannah Peck
Chapter book

A Victorian murder mystery that has plenty of twists and turns and is difficult to put down.

All Violet Veil has ever wanted is to be taken seriously and to become an apprentice in her family’s business, Veil and Sons’ Undertakers. Unfortunately, she is denied this opportunity simply because she is a girl. When there is a spate of killings, business appears to be good for Mr Veil. That is, until one rainy night when one of the dead bodies comes back to life! In the undertaker’s back room, Violet meets Oliver, a young boy who lives on the streets, and together they embark on an investigation to solve Oliver’s own ‘murder’. They are accompanied by Violet’s loyal greyhound, Bones, who has an affinity for the graveyard that lies next to the Veil’s house and business. In spite of her parents’ disapproval, plucky Violet vows to solve this mystery and Oliver is allowed to stay. When Violet’s father is later accused of these murders, Violet, Oliver and Bones must uncover the truth once and for all in a bid to save Mr Veil’s life.

This book has a strong female lead with a loveable sidekick. Violet’s headstrong nature and sense that justice must be done make her a character that you can’t help but root for. The story takes its readers along on the journey of the investigation and is nail-biting in places.

A must-read for lovers of detective stories, ghostly tales and historical fiction. There is a sense of dark adventure and foreboding throughout and this makes the spooky nature of the story very appealing. 

Dominique Valente
 & Sarah Warburton
Chapter book
The first book in a spellbinding children's fantasy series, with beautiful black-and-white inside illustrations by Sarah Warburton.Willow Moss, the youngest and least powerful sister in a family of witches, has a magical ability for finding lost things - like keys, or socks, or spectacles. Useful, but not exactly exciting ...Then the most powerful witch in the world of Starfell turns up at Willow's door and asks for her help. A whole day - last Tuesday to be precise - has gone missing. Completely. And without it the whole universe could unravel.Now Willow holds the fate of Starfell in her rather unremarkable hands... Can she save the day - by finding the lost one?Step into Starfell, a world crackling with warmth, wit and magic, perfect for readers aged 8-12.
Robin Stevens
Chapter book

The Murder Most Unladylike books form a series of children’s murder mystery novels written by Robin Stevens. Popular with children aged 9-12, the stories follow the adventures of two schoolgirls who set up their own detective agency.

Fans of the Murder Most Unladylike series enjoy the stories’ unfolding mysteries told through Hazel’s witty case notes. Readers also love the fast-paced plots with clever twists, the character-centred drama and also the 1930s boarding school setting. The stories deal with important themes like friendship, diversity, loyalty and social class against the backdrop of the murder investigations. Additionally, many children enjoy the collectibility of the series with their rainbow-hued covers and sprayed edges.

Recommended Key Stage 2 Poetry

Benjamin Zephaniah
Enter the crazy world of rap poet Benjamin Zephaniah! A reissue of the wonderfully irreverent collection of poetry for young people, touching on anything from vegetables to the Queen and from sewage to the sun. There's plenty of humour as well as poems on racism, pollution and the murder of a cat.
Joseph Coelho
 & Daniel Gray-Barnett
From the fantastic duo behind Poems Aloud and Smile Out Loud comes another compendium of 25 original confidence-building poems to read out loud which will show children that their voice has FANTASTIC power.From multi-award winning poet and Waterstones Children's Laureate Joseph Coelho comes 25 more brilliant, sparkling and truly original poems for children, specially written to help build confidence, develop speaking skills and help foster self-belief.The collection contains mantras to be true to yourself, to help you feel brave, project happiness, conjure a smile, make you laugh or cheer others up. Some are odes, some can be said as personal mantras or just poems that instil confidence and help children realise the power of their voices.Reading these poems aloud will teach children the power of a poem, encouraging them to explore the magic of language and foster a love of verse.
Sharon Creech
A story told entirely through narrative verse. Slowly Jack learns the pleasures of writing poetry as Miss Stretchberry encourages him to tell his own story through verse. What emerges is a moving and memorable verse novel about a boy and his dog and his growing passion for poetry.

Favourite Non-Fiction Books for Primary School Children

A vibrant encyclopedia that combines facts and figures with the inspiring stories of sporting legends and icons.This exciting book for children is packed with fun facts about a range of popular sports such as football, karate, badminton, and skiing, as well as ones you might never have heard of like biathlon or cheese rolling. Whether you're a fan of team sports, winter sports, water sports, extreme sports, and even board games such as chess and go, this reference book has it all!My Encyclopedia of Very Important Sport also celebrates the unique talents, lives, and careers of sporting heroes such as Usain Bolt, Serena Williams, Yuna Kim, Lin Dan, and Donald Bradman, and chronicles the most celebrated stories in sporting history, such as breaking the Four-minute mile, Nadia Comaneci's Perfect 10, and Jesse Owens at the 1936 Olympics. Featuring everything from obscure rules and strange equipment, to moments of triumph and sporting events like The World Cup, Superbowl, Olympics, Paralympics, and more - this is the perfect compendium for budding superstars everywhere.
Kate Pankhurst
Prepare to be inspired with this fantastically great new series for young readers from bestselling author Kate Pankhurst, a descendent of suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst. In this first book, read the true stories of amazing scientists and discover things that are out of this world!Women have been responsible for many of the world's most groundbreaking scientific discoveries. These are the stories of incredible female scientists whose hard work and persistence changed our understanding of science, and transformed people's ideas of what women can do.Including comic strips, family trees, maps and more, Fantastically Great Women Scientists and Their Stories is a celebration of women who made some of the world's most important scientific breakthroughs.
Mike Barfield
 & Jess Bradley

This colourful, cartoon-style reference book brings facts to life with humour and fun illustrations. Following on from the enormous success of its award-winning predecessors, this latest book in the ‘Day in the Life Of..’ series is packed full of information and facts about space, presented in an entertaining comic style that is a joy to read.

Readers will enjoy the variety of scientific information, which felt like a balanced view of different areas including science, technology, astrology and the history of space travel. This would be a great book for children who love a highly visual element to what they read. Readers could dip in and out of the various topics individually, or teachers could choose sections to share as a class when exploring related topics. When added to a classroom library, this series is sure to be in high demand during independent reading time. 

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Guidance: About the KS2 Booklist

How should you encourage junior school children to read?

At the core of instilling a passion for reading in primary school is the empowerment of choice. It is crucial to provide children with access to a diverse array of books, encompassing various styles, formats, and genres, allowing them to shape their identity as readers. Through exploring different options, children not only have alternatives if a particular book doesn’t resonate with them but also develop the ability to make well-informed decisions about literature that ignites their reading enthusiasm. This vital process plays a central role in fostering children’s intrinsic motivation to read, establishing the foundation for a lifelong love of books.

Whether it’s exploring popular bestsellers like the Percy Jackson series or delving into magical realism with titles like Tilly and the Bookwanderers, ensuring a wide range of appealing and age-appropriate books is essential for primary children to choose from. Many children are drawn to illustrated books – from picturebooks like Ocean Meets Sky to illustrated chapter books like the supremely popular Diary of a Wimpy Kid and graphic novels like Mega Robot Bros.

Our curated KS2 reading list also features poetry books like Benjamin Zephaniah’s Funky Chickens, alongside non-fiction titles such as Fantastically Great Women Scientists.

Every recommended book has been thoughtfully chosen for our individual year group booklists, ensuring a comprehensive and enjoyable reading experience for each child.

How are the Reading for Pleasure booklists selected?

Each of our Recommended Reads lists contains books specially picked out for reading for pleasure in each primary year group, from Preschool to Year 6. These lists are different from our topic booklists, as the books are purely selected to read for pleasure at each age group.

Our team of experts carefully curated this collection of primary books with the help of our Review Panel members, who have tried and tested hundreds of titles in their primary school settings to bring you only the best of the best. In addition, we work with a team of booksellers and professional librarians who check the lists and help to ensure the selected titles are in print and easily available for schools to purchase.

Our goal is to compile lists that accommodate different reading styles, cater to varying interest levels, span different publication dates (featuring both timeless classics and contemporary titles) and include books with diverse characters and settings. This approach allows schools that use our lists to present children with a rich array of high-quality reading options tailored to their age and stage.

Where can I purchase the books on the BooksForTopics KS2 Booklist?

What other book lists for children in Key Stage 2 schools are available?

We have a special area on the BooksForTopics website where you can find more recommended booklists for KS2.

Many of our booklists are based on topics found on the primary school curriculum, from Romans in history and Light and Sound in science to Design Technology and PSHE.

Some of the booklists on the website are themed on children’s special interests – like football or dance – or seasonal and special events such as Christmas or the Olympics.

Our most popular booklists are the Recommended Reads lists for each year group from EYFS to Year 6. In addition, we have a number of targeted Reading for Pleasure booklists, such as graphic novels, storytime favourites, reluctant readers or first chapter books.

Our Branching Out lists are popular for moving readers on from a particular book or series they love – from books for fans of Wimpy Kid to more books like Harry Potter – and also come with printable posters.

We also have a diversity hub in which we feature diverse and inclusive booklists for different age groups.

If you are looking for lists of brand-new recommended children’s books, you may also like our Books of the Month or Ones to Watch lists.

Can I download a printable version of the Junior Booklist?

All of our Year Group Recommended Read lists come with a printable poster and checklist. Schools are very welcome to display the posters or to share the printable resources with their community.

Printable Poster – Best KS2 Books PDF

junior rec reads

Printable Checklist – Best KS2 Books PDF

Where can I find recommended reading lists for other primary key stages?

Discover recommended books for primary school key stages at BooksForTopics. Our expert team has curated a top-quality collection of books for each stage, reviewed by our school-based Review Panel. Each booklist includes recommended titles, a printable poster, and checklist. Schools can buy full sets of each Year Group’s list through our trusted partner, Peters.

Don’t miss these recommended reading lists for other key stages – find them using our quick links:


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