Clean Books for Pre-Teens

I received an email requesting that I expand the recommendations for the Pre-Tween set. Here are some of the first books that come to mind. Click on the covers to read more about the books on Amazon...

Princess Academy by Shannon Hale. This book is WONDERFUL! And if you're not the princess type, try it anyway. It's not your typical princess story.

Dragon Slippers by Jessica Day George. Enjoy fantasy? This book is so well-written and fun.

The Tale of Despereaux by Kate Dicamillo. We are currently reading this as a family, so I can't tell you if the end is clean and wonderful, but the first half is absolutely inspiring! Tiny Despereaux is a character you'll want to cheer for.

The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis. This remains our favorite read-aloud so far. It's a classic for a reason.

Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery. Anne is another character you can't help but cheer for.

Hope Was Here by Joan Bauer. Empowering book about a girl named Hope. This one is realistic fiction for the young teen set.

Blue by Joyce Moyer Hostetter. Enjoy historical fiction? This well-written book made me laugh and cry. Great characters!

Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine. This one may not be very old, but it's a classic in my book.

Rules by Cynthia Lord. This one is realistic fiction about growing up with an autistic brother. It is engaging, interesting, and thought-provoking.

Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling. Everything has been said about these books. I love them.

The Erec Rex series by Kaza Kingsley and the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series by Rick Riordan. If you did read and enjoy the Harry Potter books, you'll probably enjoy these series, as well. Erec Rex may sound similar to Harry Potter, but the series definitely stands on its own and is very different. Percy Jackson doesn't discover he's half, he's half greek god. If you enjoy greek mythology, this series has great voice.

Check out this list, as well. Some of these books may be a little mature for a pre-tween, but it is a great list that might help you find a few more books.
And finally, readers, what are your recommendations?


  1. My son has been enjoying the Children of the Lamp series by PB Kerr. I haven't read them so I can't tell you just how clean they are but they were in the children's section of the library if that means anything.

  2. My kids raved about the Fablehaven series (Brandon Mull and also like the Pendragon books and the Artemis Fowl's series. I like the Fablehaven books, because they encorporate a good mixture of fantasy but with good morals-there are actually serious consequences from breaking the rules. It's a series I really enjoyed reading with my kids. We also recently read and loved the City of Ember series (4 books). A very different type of book from the other fantasy my kids typically choose.

  3. I have to second the City of Ember books and add Charlie and the chocolate factory.

  4. Great suggestions. Some I've read and loved, some I still want to read, some I've never heard of but will have to check out.

  5. The new 39 Clues series is also quite popular.

  6. Thank you for this list (and for your blog in general, which I just discovered via another book blog)! Everything on here that I've actually read is something I've loved, so I will definitely be looking up some of the ones that are new to me. I've been hearing a lot lately about the Erec Rex books.

    The clean MG fantasy I'm recommending lately is R. J. Anderson's Faery Rebels, which I loved. I also will recommend the Betsy-Tacy series by Maud Hart Lovelace to anyone who loves Anne of Green Gables or that sort of book.