The 10 Best Fantasy Books for 5th Graders

Fantasy books have long captured the imaginations of readers, transporting them to worlds filled with magic, mystery, and adventure. For 5th graders, these stories not only entertain and inspire but also help develop their reading skills and understanding of complex themes. In this article, we’ll explore why fantasy books are great for 5th graders and recommend ten of the best classic and modern titles for them to dive into.

The 10 Best Fantasy Books for 5th Graders

Why Fantasy Books are Great for 5th Graders

Fantasy books offer several benefits to young readers, especially those in the 5th grade. As they venture into other worlds, they also develop important skills and engage with thought-provoking themes.

Encouraging Imagination and Creativity

One of the most significant advantages of reading fantasy books is the way these stories encourage imagination and creativity. By transporting young readers to new worlds with unique characters and magical elements, they will naturally begin to envision and create their own stories in their minds. This imaginative play is crucial for cognitive development and helps foster a lifelong love of reading.

For example, when reading “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone,” children can imagine themselves attending Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, learning spells, and battling dark forces alongside Harry, Ron, and Hermione. They can picture themselves riding on the back of a dragon in “Eragon” or embarking on a quest to destroy a powerful ring in “The Lord of the Rings.”

Developing Reading Skills and Vocabulary

Fantasy books often contain rich, descriptive language, complex narrative structures, and diverse, well-developed characters. By engaging with these elements in longer and more sophisticated texts, 5th graders will develop their reading comprehension and fluency.

Furthermore, encountering unfamiliar words and expressions expands their vocabulary and promotes a deeper understanding of language and context. For instance, in “The Chronicles of Narnia,” children can learn new words like “faun,” “centaur,” and “naiad.” In “The Golden Compass,” they can discover words like “alethiometer” and “daemons.”

Introducing Complex Themes and Moral Lessons

As children grow older, they increasingly encounter complex and challenging themes in their lives. Fantasy books can provide a safe space to explore these topics and learn valuable moral lessons.

Through the characters, conflicts, and resolutions, readers will face real-world issues, such as friendship, bravery, loyalty, and the consequences of one’s actions. For example, in “Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief,” children can learn about the importance of family, friendship, and self-discovery. In ” The Hunger Games ,” they can explore themes of power, oppression, and rebellion.

Additionally, fantasy books often delve into broader themes, like the nature of good versus evil, encouraging young readers to consider moral and ethical questions. In “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe,” children can learn about the power of forgiveness and redemption. In “A Wrinkle in Time,” they can contemplate the nature of time, space, and love.

In conclusion, fantasy books are an excellent choice for 5th graders because they encourage imagination, develop reading skills and vocabulary, and introduce complex themes and moral lessons. By reading these books, children can expand their horizons, gain new perspectives, and foster a lifelong love of reading.

Top 5 Classic Fantasy Books for 5th Graders

As a 5th grader, there’s nothing more exciting than diving into a new book series that takes you on a journey to a magical world full of adventure, wonder, and excitement. These timeless classics have enchanted generations of readers with their imaginative worlds, compelling characters, and captivating plots. Here are our top five classic fantasy books for 5th graders to escape into.

The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis

The Chronicles of Narnia

This beloved series follows the adventures of four siblings who discover the magical land of Narnia through a wardrobe. Here, they encounter talking animals, mythical creatures, and an ongoing battle between good and evil. Each book in the series captures the imagination while exploring themes like courage, faith, and the strength found in friendship.

As you read through the pages of The Chronicles of Narnia, you’ll feel as though you’ve been transported to a magical world full of wonder and excitement. From the majestic lion Aslan to the evil White Witch, the characters in this series will capture your heart and imagination.

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

The Hobbit

Tolkien’s timeless tale of adventure, friendship, and heroism introduces readers to the world of Middle-earth, where a reluctant hobbit named Bilbo Baggins embarks on a quest to help a group of dwarves reclaim their homeland. Along the way, Bilbo encounters dangerous creatures, finds unexpected allies, and discovers his own inner strength and bravery.

The Hobbit is a classic tale that has captured the hearts of readers for generations. From the moment you open the book, you’ll be transported to a world of magic and adventure that will keep you on the edge of your seat until the very end.

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle

A Wrinkle in Time: (Newbery Medal Winner)

Meg Murry, her brother Charles Wallace, and their friend Calvin soon find themselves on a perilous journey through space and time to rescue Meg’s father from an evil force threatening the universe. It is a story of love, courage, and the power of individuality in the face of darkness and conformity.

A Wrinkle in Time is a timeless classic that explores the power of love and individuality in the face of adversity. As you read this book, you’ll be transported to a world of magic and wonder that will keep you captivated until the very end.

The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster

Houghton Mifflin Math: Literature Library Reader Grade 6: The Phantom Tollbooth

Young Milo embarks on a fantastical journey through a mysterious tollbooth that appears in his room, leading him to the imaginative Lands Beyond. Along the way, Milo learns the importance of words, numbers, and the endless possibilities of discovery and understanding, proving that even the most mundane aspects of life can be full of wonder.

The Phantom Tollbooth is a classic tale that teaches readers the importance of curiosity and the power of imagination. As you read through the pages of this book, you’ll be transported to a world of endless possibilities where anything is possible.

The Neverending Story by Michael Ende

The Neverending Story: The Encyclopedia of Fantastica

In this magical adventure, lonely boy Bastian finds refuge in a book about the enchanting world of Fantastica, where he becomes entwined in the quest to save the realm from an encroaching darkness. As Bastian reads, he learns that he has the power to shape the story and, ultimately, his own reality.

The Neverending Story is a classic tale that explores the power of imagination and the importance of believing in oneself. As you read through the pages of this book, you’ll be transported to a world of magic and adventure that will keep you captivated until the very end.

These classic fantasy books for 5th graders are sure to capture your imagination and transport you to a world of magic and adventure. So grab a book, snuggle up in your favorite reading spot, and get ready to embark on a journey you’ll never forget!

Top 5 Modern Fantasy Books for 5th Graders

These more recent additions to the world of fantasy literature continue to inspire countless young readers with their engaging stories and thought-provoking themes. Reading these books can transport kids to magical worlds filled with adventure, danger, and wonder. Here are our top five modern fantasy books for 5th graders to immerse themselves in.

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

The first book in the iconic Harry Potter series introduces readers to a magical world filled with spells, potions, and fantastic creatures, as well as timeless themes of friendship, loyalty, and the power of love. As Harry navigates his first year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, he discovers his own unique talents and destiny, making for an unforgettable reading experience. Readers will be enchanted by the vivid descriptions of Hogwarts Castle, the Forbidden Forest, and the Quidditch pitch. They will also be captivated by the richly drawn characters, from the brave and loyal Hermione Granger to the mischievous and loyal Ron Weasley.

Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan

No products found.

In this modern-day spin on Greek mythology, twelve-year-old Percy Jackson discovers he’s actually a demigod, the son of Poseidon. Soon, he’s swept into a dangerous adventure to prevent a war among the gods. Along the way, Percy learns about his own strengths, the meaning of true heroism, and the bonds of friendship and family. Readers will be thrilled by the action-packed scenes, from Percy’s battle with the Minotaur to his encounter with Medusa. They will also be drawn in by the humor and heart of the story, as Percy struggles to find his place in both the mortal and immortal worlds.

The Land of Stories: The Wishing Spell by Chris Colfer

The Land of Stories: The Wishing Spell

When twins Alex and Conner find a magical book that transports them into the world of fairy tales, they soon realize they are not just observers of these classic stories, but active participants in them. As they collect items for a mysterious Wishing Spell, the siblings confront the complexities of heroism, villainy, and ultimately, the power of storytelling itself. Readers will be delighted by the clever twists in classic fairy tales, from Goldilocks as a ruthless queen to Little Red Riding Hood as a fierce warrior. They will also be moved by the emotional depth of the story, as Alex and Conner grapple with the loss of their father and the challenges of growing up.

The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill

The Girl Who Drank the Moon (Winner of the 2017 Newbery Medal)

This Newbery Medal-winning novel tells the story of Luna, a young girl raised by a witch, a swamp monster, and a tiny dragon. As she turns thirteen, Luna’s true magical nature begins to emerge, leading her to confront the tragic secrets of her past and the importance of love and sacrifice. Readers will be entranced by the lyrical prose and vivid imagery of the story, from the glowing forest to the mysterious Tower. They will also be inspired by the themes of courage, compassion, and the power of self-discovery.

You can find this book here.

Wings of Fire: The Dragonet Prophecy by Tui T. Sutherland

The Dragonet Prophecy (Wings of Fire #1)

In the first installment of this epic series, young dragons from different tribes come together to fulfill an ancient prophecy that promises to bring peace and justice to their embattled world. During their journey, they must learn to rely on one another’s strengths and resist the power of greed, betrayal, and tyranny that threatens to tear everything apart. Readers will be swept away by the imaginative world-building, from the soaring mountains to the treacherous swamps. They will also be drawn in by the complex characters, from the fierce and loyal Clay to the cunning and ambitious Queen Scarlet.

These five modern fantasy books are sure to capture the imaginations of 5th graders and inspire them to explore new worlds and new ideas. Whether they prefer tales of wizards and witches, demigods and monsters, or dragons and prophecies, there’s something for every young reader in these captivating stories.


What do 5th graders like to read?

Something gripping, gossipy, and easy to read. 5th graders love funny stories too, so if you can add that in, that’s a bonus.

When should my child be reading fantasy novels?

5th grade is a brilliant time to introduce fantasy novels, helping to expand their imagination and push the boundaries of reading a little further.

Is Harry Potter suitable for my 5th grader?

By this age, kids should be prepared to read the Harry Potter series as a whole. It’s a great mix of child-like magic and darker, more adult themes.

You can find this book here.

YouTube video
Eddison Monroe
Latest posts by Eddison Monroe (see all)