How do you get a 9-year-old boy to enjoy reading?
The answer to that question seems to be an elusive mystery for so many…and yet sometimes the answer is easier than you might think.
The best way to get any child engaged in books is to get them connected with books that pique their interest. In other words, if your child likes sea creatures, find books about sea creatures for them to read. If you child likes sports, find books that are set in the context of a baseball team or a soccer team. If your child likes adventure and travel, find books where the characters travel the world looking for adventure.
When I sat down with my son to get his list of favorite books, one thing stood out crystal clear: He loves mysteries!
Solving puzzles. Adventures. Action. A mystery to untangle. That, more than anything else, is the overarching theme you’ll find in this book list.
And while this list might feel a little bit small, keep in mind that this list is not a list of individual books…this is a list of book series! (If you addd up all the individual books, you’ll easily top over 100 books represented in this list!)
If you’re looking for some great, captivating books written for a 9-year-old to enjoy, check out this list created just for you and your 9-year-old by my son, Josh.*
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A-Z Mystery Series
By Ron Roy
What could be more mysterious than an author that goes missing in a mystery book? As the incredible A-Z Mystery series opens, you meet best friends Dink and Josh who are looking forward to meeting the author of their favorite mystery book. Only, the author turns up missing!
Concerned about their favorite author and unable to ignore a mystery right in front of them, Dink and Josh, with the help of their friend Ruth Rose, follow the trail to find out what happened. Along the way, they gather more clues, encounter road blocks, twists, and misdirection…and even the end is not what you expect!
Ron Roy does a brilliant job writing a clean and captivating story for elementary students. The mystery has intrigue and adventure that keep you wanting to read more, but it never gets too scary. The writing is clear and easy to understand without talking down to the kids who are reading these books.
And on top of it all, you have to appreciate an author who can start his series with the ‘Absent Author,’ follow it up with the ‘Bald Bandit,’ ‘Canary Caper,’ ‘Deadly Dungeon,’ ‘Empty Envelope’…and on through the entire alphabet! From both a mom and a 9-year-old’s perspective, this series is one worth reading!
You can read more about the A-Z Mystery series here.
Ballpark Mystery Series
By David Kelly
Team up with Mike and Kate, cousins who share a love for baseball, visiting baseball parks, and solving mysteries. This dynamic duo travels the country with Kate’s parents visiting famous baseball stadiums…and as they do, they stumble across mysteries that simply must be solved.
Filled with twists and turns, these exciting books will take you on an adventure you’ll never forget – all while enjoying lots of baseball along the way!
As Josh* says, “These books are fun to read and I think everyone should read them!”
Calendar Mystery Series
By Ron Roy
All the letters of the alphabet were taken…but Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose weren’t done solving mysteries! In fact, they started finding them in each and every month of the year.
Ron Roy continues this captivating, mystery-solving book series with the continuation of the calendar mystery series. Each mystery takes you on an adventure in a different part of the year as this determined trio demonstrates incredible friendship and teamwork by solving any and every mystery that comes their way – no matter what time of year the bad guys strike!
A-Z Mysteries Super Editions
By Ron Roy
Following in the footsteps of the A-Z Mysteries, the A-Z Mysteries Super Editions are just that…a continuation of the friendship and mystery-solving skills of Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose.
Ron Roy takes us further along with these beloved characters as they grow up and tackle mysteries that are a bit more complicated than finding an absent author. The stories themselves get a bit longer, but no less captivating and adventurous as this tremendous trio teams up to solve any and every mystery that comes across their path!
Filled with twists and turns, Ron Roy delivers a mystery story that will have you riveted from the opening words to the very last page. Loaded with enough intrigue to keep you on your toes and keep you guessing, but not so much to give you bad dreams!
As Josh* says, “These books are some of my favorites! Sometimes I even go back and re-read them, they’re just that good.”
National Park Mystery Series
By Mary Morgan
When you first meet twins Ben & Becca through the pages of the National Park Mystery Series books, you think they’re pretty typical kids. But the more you read, the more you realize that these kids are more than they appear.
Ben and Becca love to travel around the country, visiting many different National Parks with their mom and dad. But somehow, they always end up in the middle of some sort of mystery wherever they are.
One thing that is so amazing about these mystery books is that they are written for younger children. You can see how Ben and Becca work to figure out the mystery and follow the clues, but the way these books are written also gives your children the opportunity to try and figure things out along the way with the twins.
On top of that, you get a front row seat to some of the most interesting and intriguing information about some of the beautiful National Parks in our country! Becca makes sure you know what you’re looking at with her tidbits of information thrown in throughout the books!
In fact, this incredible series won’t just be enjoyed by your 9-year-old, they’re sure to be a hit for the whole family!
You can read more about the National Park Mystery Series here.
By Dav Pilkey
Personally, I’ve never been much of a fan of graphic novels. But if there were any graphic novels that could change my mind, the Dog Man series by Dav Pilkey would be the one to do it!
This fun and silly book series starts out in a rather ridiculous way as a police dog and a police man are merged to form the one character of Dog Man. In each book, they go on to solve crime, save the world from the wild schemes of Petey the Cat and crack lots of jokes along the way.
And while this 10-book series is most obviously a fantasy series that could never truly happen in real life, it draws children in to see what happens next with the delightful illustrations and silly antics of the characters.
In the words of Josh,* “These books are hilarious! They are fun and enjoyable to read. I love reading them!”
BOOKS I LOVE TO LISTEN TO SOMEONE READ TO ME
Travels with Gannon & Wyatt
By Patti Wheeler and Keith Hemstreet
Come along with twins, Gannon and Wyatt, as they explore the world through the eyes of an explorer. Written in the style of a travel journal (think David Livingstone or Lewis and Clark), these brothers will take you to all corners of the globe without even leaving your favorite armchair.
But the most remarkable part of this series isn’t the places where Gannon and Wyatt have travelled – although they have traveled far and wide! Ireland, Egypt, Botswana, Australia, Greenland, and the Great Bear Rainforest are just a few places you can travel with them.
The most remarkable part of this series is how you get to explore different places through the eyes of two different people with two different perspectives. You see, Gannon loves the people and the culture and the language of all the places they visit. Wyatt focuses in more on the science, the land formations, and how the environment plays a role in the people’s lives.
As a result, you get to experience the adventure of a lifetime while exploring places you might never be able to go yourself, all while learning incredible information about our world.
You can read more about the Travels with Gannon & Wyatt books here.
The Chronicles of Narnia
By C.S. Lewis
The world of Narnia is one that calls to you: Inviting everyone of all ages to come and experience the adventure, the wonder, and the joy that is found in this enchanting world created by CS Lewis.
Narnia is a world worth exploring. It is a world filled with adventure and wonder, mistakes and lessons, excitement and forgiveness. And what could be better than animals being able to talk with humans?
This incredible 7-book series is written for children to enjoy, but you as the parents don’t have to miss out on all the fun! Grab one of the Chronicles of Narnia, curl up on the couch, and spend some time with your children as you are pulled from this world into Narnia.
You can read more about the Chronicles of Narnia and why these books should have a place on your bookshelf here.
The Final Chapter
So now that you’ve checked out this list of Josh’s* favorite books, only one question remains:
Which one will you read first?
- How To Make Reading Fun and Interesting
- Exploring the Excitement that Makes the Mystery: The A-Z Mysteries
- Adventures and Mystery Await in the National Parks: The National Park Mystery Series
- Epic Travel Adventures for You to Explore: Travels with Gannon & Wyatt
- The World of Narnia and the Lessons to be Learned There
*While the children and their opinions are real, their names have been changed to a favorite book character of their choice.
Looking for some of the books or materials mentioned on this page? Click on the photo below to purchase your own copy today.
Elizabeth Tatham, founder of Inspiration in the Everyday, is a homeschooling momma of 5 who loves helping other homeschooling mommas create a unique homeschooling adventure your kids will love…without the overwhelm! Join in on the journey with 7 simple steps to make your homeschooling day go faster, easier, and with less tears here.