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Best Chapter Books for Boys Ages 8-12 to Read This Summer

Boys like to read too! Looking for Chapter books for boys that will keep their attention? Check out these 20 Chapter books for boys ages 8-12.

BOY reading chapter books for boys

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In Scholastic’s 2016 survey of over 2000 U.S. children, ages 6-17, only 52% of boys (versus 72% of girls) said they liked reading books over the summer.

27% of boys (vs 37% of girls) said they read books for fun at least 5 days a week.  And most importantly for me: 45% percent of boys (vs 6% of girls) said that they have trouble finding books that they like.

Pookah likes to read…if the book can capture his attention. But if the book doesn’t capture him in the first chapter he is done! That’s hard on this parent who loves to save money on books but has a picky reader as a son.

In the summer, I try to have him do DEAR ( Drop Everything And Read) time every day, and I feel like that will be more important than ever this summer to keep him on track for the next school year.

RELATED POST: 10 Easy Ways to Get Your Child to Read this Summer

I set out this week, to find him books that will keep his interest AND books that are on grade level and slightly above. I’ve polled his friends, librarians and other moms to see what their boys are reading and loving.

So I put together this list of 20 chapter books for boys age 8-12. Hope you and your boys enjoy it!


The Books linked below lead to local bookstores. is an online bookstore with a mission to financially support local, independent bookstores.

If you want to find a specific local bookstore to support, find that bookstore on their map and that bookstore will receive the full profit of your order.

Otherwise, your order will contribute to an earnings pool that will be evenly distributed among independent bookstores (even those that don’t use Bookshop).


20 Chapter Books for Boys Ages 8-12

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Monday 6th of March 2023

Dragon Kingdom of Wrenly is also a great series to add to the list. Thank you so much for all of the other great suggestions.


Thursday 21st of May 2020

Thank you so much for this list. My son is a hard one to choose for books he will actually read. ????

LaShawn Wiltz

Friday 22nd of May 2020

you are so welcome~