Captivating Chapter Books for Early Readers


Why am I writing this article? My six-year-old is devouring books, so I want to share the most captivating chapter books for early readers. As an avid reader myself whose nose is in a book whenever I get a chance, this makes my mama heart so proud. We’ve been through several series so far and recommendations from fellow parents have been so helpful! Parents helping parents is so often the ultimate resource.

©Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

For our family and our two girls, anything that is magical, unicorns and sparkles-related, possibly with a mermaid thrown in, will be a big hit. I will note that my friend who recommended the Dory series has a seven and ten-year old boy and they are OBSESSED with that particular series. Since Dory Fantasmagory has been on repeat at our house, I’ll kick off with that one.

Dory Fantasmagory

A friend recently introduced us to the series. Her boys love Dory! My six-year old daughter is now obsessed with this series, and my three-year old loves listening to Dory’s escapades as well. Dory is the youngest in the family, lovingly also called Rascal because she tends to get into trouble. She really craves attention, but she’s too much of a baby for her sister and brother, so she’s left to her own devices. She has a wild imagination, untiring energy, and a sense of humor that makes me laugh out loud when I’m reading this to my kiddos.

Zoey and Sassafras

These books are just awesome. Zoey’s escapades all involve the scientific process (and a full cast of magical creatures!). Each story features a new magical animal with a problem that must be solved using science.

The Princess in Black

The Princess in Black is Princess Magnolia’s alter ego, and she uses her superhero powers to fight monsters and save the kingdom. Of course, she has several sidekick friends to help. This is also a series, and the 10th book was recently released.

The Unicorn Diaries

This is a magical series about the unicorn Rainbow Tinseltail and his/her friends in Sparklegrove Forest. I would say it’s aimed at newly independent readers. The text is easy to read and there are colorful illustrations on every page. The 10th book in this series will be released in June 2024.

The Owl Diaries

The author of the series The Unicorn Diaries also wrote The Owl Diaries. These books focus on Eva the owl, her best friend Lucy, her frenemy Sue, and their wing-tastic adventures in Treetopolis.

Nancy Drew and the Clue Crew

I picked up the first one in this series recently and my daughters loves it! Personally, I still own every single one of my hardback Nancy Drew books from when I was a child, and I was thrilled to see this series for a younger age was even a thing. In this series, Nancy is eight years old and starting her sleuthing adventures. Her friends Bess and George are also part of the plots.

Gooney Bird Greene

I can’t vouch for this series yet since we are waiting to grab our first one from the library, but it came up in my search for a series that might be interesting to my daughter. Happy to get comments from folks that have read it!

Do you have a favorite chapter books for early readers? Let us know! If you are looking for more books, check out these chapter books for beginner to advanced readers recommendations from Tatiana.

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