Book picks similar to
Hamstersaurus Rex vs. Squirrel Kong by Tom O'Donnell


juvenile-fiction
animals-fiction
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Lights, Camera, Middle School!


Jennifer L. Holm - 2017
    You can never be sure who s a friend and who's an enemy, and the halls are filled with mean-girl zombies. Instead of brains, the zombies hunger for stuff the perfect wedge sandals or the right shade of sparkly lip gloss and they expect everyone to be just like them. But Babymouse doesn't want to fit in she wants to stand out! So she joins the film club to write and direct a sweeping cinematic epic. Will making the film of her dreams turn into a nightmare?

Diary of an Awesome Friendly Kid: Rowley Jefferson's Journal


Jeff Kinney - 2019
    . . and counting. But it's finally time for readers to hear directly from Rowley in a journal of his own. In Diary of an Awesome Friendly Kid, Rowley writes about his experiences and agrees to play the role of biographer for Greg along the way. (After all, one day Greg will be rich and famous, and everyone will want to know his life's story.) But Rowley is a poor choice for the job, and his "biography" of Greg is a hilarious mess. Diary of an Awesome Friendly Kid: Rowley Jefferson's Journal offers readers a new way to look at the Wimpy world--one fans won't want to miss!

Inkling


Kenneth Oppel - 2018
    But after his dad’s string of successful books, a tragedy strikes the family and now his dad is completely stuck.If only artistic talent were hereditary. Ethan is stuck on a graphic-novel project of his own at school and won’t own up to the fact that he can’t draw. When one night an ink-blot creation emerges from his father’s sketchbook, the family’s whole world begins to change.Featuring artwork by the beloved, award-winning illustrator Sydney Smith, Inkling is a timeless story that speaks to the creator in us all.

EngiNerds


Jarrett Lerner - 2017
    They may be brainiacs, but they’re just like everyone else: they fight with one another, watch too much TV, eat Chinese food, and hate walking their dogs. Well, maybe not just like everyone because Ken’s best friend Dan has been building robots. He then secretly sent one to each of the EngiNerds, never letting them know he’s the mastermind. At first Ken is awed and delighted: what kid hasn’t dreamed of having a robot all their own? Someone who can be their friend, clean their room, walk the dog, answer homework questions…how amazing is that? But be careful what you wish for: Dan’s robot, Greeeg, may look innocent, but his ravenous consumption of food—comestibles—turns him into a butt-blasting bot. And once the other robots ‘come alive’ it’s up to the motley crew of EngiNerds to not only save the day, but save the planet!

Funny Kid #1: Funny Kid for President


Matt Stanton - 2017
    Armstrong. But then, the most unexpected thing happens—the school principal, Mrs. Sniggles, suggests Max run for class president.Max isn’t the only kid on the ballot, however. His archenemy, Abby Purcell, is also up for election—and she’s out to defeat him at all costs. To win, Max is going to need the 24/7 help of his best friend, Hugo, and he’s going to have to run the campaign of a lifetime.Max may not be the smartest or fastest kid, or the handsomest, but he just might be the funniest kid you’ll ever meet—and it’s this talent that could turn him from underdog to top dog. Max for President!Matt Stanton brings his veteran children’s book chops to this hilarious new series, perfect for early middle grade readers looking for side-splitting laughs!

How to Be a Supervillain


Michael Fry - 2017
    But to his family's utter disappointment, Victor doesn't have a single bad-guy bone in his body. He won't run with scissors, he always finishes his peas, and he can't stand to be messy. Hopeless!As a last-ditch effort before they give up and let him be a--gasp!--civilian, Victor's exasperated parents send him to apprentice under a disgraced supervillain called The Smear. This matchup starts off as a complete disaster, but Victor and The Smear eventually find that they have a lot to learn from each other. When the stakes get high as Victor is forced to choose between his mentor and his family morals (or lack thereof)...what will the world's nicest bad guy do?In this rollicking middle-grade adventure, Michael Fry's witty text and hysterical artwork combines superhero action with classic fish-out-of-water humor.<!--EndFragment-->

Black Panther: The Young Prince


Ronald L. Smith - 2018
    Ruler of Wakanda. Avenger.This is his destiny. But right now, he's simply T'Challa-the young prince.Life is comfortable for twelve-year-old T'Challa in his home of Wakanda, an isolated, technologically advanced African nation. When he's not learning how to rule a kingdom from his father-the reigning Black Panther-or testing out the latest tech, he's off breaking rules with his best friend, M'Baku. But as conflict brews near Wakanda, T'Challa's father makes a startling announcement: he's sending T'Challa and M'Baku to school in America.This is no prestigious private academy-they've been enrolled at South Side Middle School in the heart of Chicago. Despite being given a high-tech suit and a Vibranium ring to use only in case of an emergency, T'Challa realizes he might not be as equipped to handle life in America as he thought. Especially when it comes to navigating new friendships while hiding his true identity as the prince of a powerful nation, and avoiding Gemini Jones, a menacing classmate who is rumored to be involved in dark magic.When strange things begin happening around school, T'Challa sets out to uncover the source. But what he discovers in the process is far more sinister than he could ever have imagined. In order to protect his friends and stop an ancient evil, T'Challa must take on the mantle of a hero, setting him on the path to becoming the Black Panther.

Diary of a Soccer Star


Shamini Flint - 2010
    But his Dad is convinced that Marcus has magic in his feet. Read the hilarious diary of a reluctant soccer star and how Marcus scores a goal in a way no one has seen before!

The Pudding Problem


Joe Berger - 2017
    Most of his lies are harmless; tall tales and the product of an overactive imagination. So when Sam is summoned to explain a strange discovery—a ping-pong ball in a jar of peanut butter—and denies involvement, no one believes him. Then more seemingly unrelated peculiarities emerge, and Sam categorically denies any knowledge of those, too. In between these mysterious accusations, and with evidence mounting against him, Sam ruminates on the different sorts of lies he has told using examples from his past. Meanwhile, two pounds of potatoes wind up in the washing machine. Sam comes to a decision: he decides it is time to come clean about this latest tangled web. He gathers his family to hear the truth. The whole truth. Or is it? Could it be that this final “truth” is, in fact, another lie?

The Nebula Secret


Trudi Trueit - 2018
    But for Cruz, there's more at stake. No sooner has he arrived at the Academy than he discovers that his family has a mysterious past with the organization that could jeopardize his future. In the midst of codebreaking and cool classes, new friends and augmented reality expeditions, Cruz must tackle the biggest question of all: Who is out to get him, and why?Readers can get in on the excitement with puzzles and codes embedded throughout.

The Last Fifth Grade of Emerson Elementary


Laura Shovan - 2016
    Families change and new friendships form as these terrific kids grow up and move on in this whimsical novel-in-verse about finding your voice and making sure others hear it. Eighteen kids,one year of poems,one school set to close.Two yellow bulldozerscrouched outside,ready to eat the buildingin one greedy gulp. But look out, bulldozers.Ms. Hill’s fifth-grade classhas plans for you.They’re going to speak up and work togetherto save their school. Awards:Arnold Adoff Poetry Award for New Voices Honor BookCybils Award in PoetryAn NCTE Notable Verse NovelBank Street Best Children's Book of the YearILA-CBC Choices Reading Lists, Children’s ChoicesSCBWI Crystal Kite Finalist, Midatlantic RegionLectio Book Award FinalistNominated for:Massachusetts Children's Book AwardNew Hampshire Great Stone Face Book AwardPennsylvania Young Reader’s Choice AwardsRhode Island Children’s Book AwardWisconsin State Reading Association Children's Book Awards

The Wild Ones


C. Alexander London - 2015
    But when a pack of hunting dogs destroy his home and kill his parents, Kit needs to escape.  He finds himself in Ankle Snap Alley, a city in the midst of a turf war between the Wild Ones and the people's pets who call themselves The Flealess. There he uncovers the secret that they died for--an ancient truce that gives Ankle Snap Alley to the Wild Ones. But the Flealess will stop at nothing to keep that secret buried forever, and Kit is in serious danger. Only the brave of heart and quick of paw can save the Wild Ones now. Perfect for fans of the Warriors, Spirit Animals, or Redwall series, this first book in the Wild Ones epic is sure capture young readers' imaginations and take them on a great adventure.Praise for The Wild Ones:  * "The action is fast-paced, the dialogue hilarious, and the supporting characters true to their animal personalities. Animal fantasy lovers will frequently chuckle; younger children may enjoy hearing the book read aloud."--School Library Connection *STARRED REVIEW*“Raccoon hero Kit and his ragtag community of creatures will sneak their way into your imagination and steal your heart. They may pick your pocket, too, but they’ll take you on an adventure you won’t soon forget. This is a fantasy that kids will adore (and quick-of-paw parents will steal). A wild ride from a wildly imaginative author.”--Katherine Applegate, Newbery Medal-winning author of The One and Only Ivan and the bestselling Animorphs series"Bold deeds, betrayals, and buffoonery kick off this series with gusto."--Kirkus Reviews "The sharp, lively descriptions ('like dynamite in a silk purse') shine while the exhilarating finale illustrates that home is wherever your 'howl to snap' friends live."--Publishers Weekly"Readers will root for Kit as he tangles with scoundrels, liars, and even a hungry crocodile....A promising new series for fans of animal adventure."--School Library Journal "With rich vocabulary, a satisfying quest, and some dastardly villains, this will be an easy pick for middle-graders who love animal adventure stories."--BooklistFrom the Hardcover edition.

What Came from the Stars


Gary D. Schmidt - 2012
    Mourning his late mother, Tommy doesn't notice much about the chain he found, but soon he is drawing the twin suns and humming the music of a hanorah. As Tommy absorbs the art and language of the Valorim, their enemies target him. When a creature begins ransacking Plymouth in search of the chain, Tommy learns he must protect his family from villains far worse than he's ever imagined.

The Strange Case of Origami Yoda


Tom Angleberger - 2010
    Dwight does a lot of weird things, like wearing the same T-shirt for a month or telling people to call him "Captain Dwight." This is embarrassing, particularly for Tommy, who sits with him at lunch every day. But Dwight does one cool thing. He makes origami. One day he makes an origami finger puppet of Yoda. And that's when things get mysterious. Origami Yoda can predict the future and suggest the best way to deal with a tricky situation. His advice actually works, and soon most of the sixth grade is lining up with questions.Tommy wants to know how Origami Yoda can be so smart when Dwight himself is so clueless. Is Yoda tapping into the Force? It's crucial that Tommy figure out the mystery before he takes Yoda's advice about something VERY IMPORTANT that has to do with a girl.This is Tommy's case file of his investigation into "The Strange Case of Origami Yoda."

Roll with It


Jamie Sumner - 2019
    That surprises some people, who see a kid in a wheelchair and think she’s going to be all sunshine and cuddles. The thing is, Ellie has big dreams: She might be eating Stouffer’s for dinner, but one day she’s going to be a professional baker. If she’s not writing fan letters to her favorite celebrity chefs, she’s practicing recipes on her well-meaning, if overworked, mother. But when Ellie and her mom move so they can help take care of her ailing grandpa, Ellie has to start all over again in a new town at a new school. Except she’s not just the new kid—she’s the new kid in the wheelchair who lives in the trailer park on the wrong side of town. It all feels like one challenge too many, until Ellie starts to make her first-ever friends. Now she just has to convince her mom that this town might just be the best thing that ever happened to them!