Finding great gifts for middle schoolers can seem like an impossible task. If they don’t have it already, it’s uber-expensive. But if you’re buying for a middle-schooler who loves to read, or has dreams of being a writer – the answer is simple. The best Christmas gift for a middle-school reader or wanna-be author is a signed book!
Signed books make great gifts for several reasons. First, unless it’s a collector’s item, a signed book is no more expensive than an unsigned book. I’ve never met an author who didn’t love connecting with readers; they wouldn’t dream of charging extra to personalize a book. It’s added value to the reader, but really not any added cost.
Secondly, signed books are a lovely personal touch for your favorite reader. Buying a book is as easy as clicking the Buy It Now button on Amazon, but a signed book shows that you took the time to go above and beyond. At least it looks that way, lol. In most cases, it’s actually very easy to buy an autographed copy of a book. Author websites will often have the option of purchasing a signed book, or in some cases, mailing you a signed bookplate.
Finally, signed books are the best Christmas gift for middle-school readers and writers because they are encouraging! Books don’t just happen; they are written by flesh and blood people who also happened to be kids once. Showing young writers what’s possible is a great way to keep them interested in writing.
Don’t stress this Christmas! Get your favorite middle-school reader a great book, signed by the author!
I’ve put together a list of great books below that are available to be autographed. To order a personalized copy of these books, look for the author’s venmo link in the book’s description.
Order the Best Christmas Gift for A Middle-School Reader Today.
Signed Copy of Last In A Long Line of Rebels by Lisa Lewis Tyre
Lou might be only twelve, but she’s never been one to take things sitting down. So when her Civil War-era house is about to be condemned, she’s determined to save it—either by getting it deemed a historic landmark or by finding the stash of gold rumored to be hidden nearby during the war.
* “Accomplished debut. . . . Strong secondary characters, including Lou’s thrice-divorced flirtatious grandmother, help build the strong sense of small-town community. Tyre masterfully weaves historical details into Lou’s discoveries in ways that never feel facile, while deftly and satisfyingly resolving past and present puzzles.”—Publishers Weekly, STARRED REVIEW
“Tyre’s debut features characters that are believable in their naïveté and sense of invincibility. . . . Louise’s account of their summer adventures, with chapters headed by entries from a Civil War diary, should please middle-grade readers looking for a solid story with an intriguing historical connection.”—Booklist
To purchase a signed copy of Last In A Long Line of Rebels, Venmo $12 (includes shipping) to @Lisa-Tyre-1 Please be sure and put your address along with the name for the inscription.
Signed Copy of Hope In The Holler by Lisa Lewis Tyre
The reviews for Hope In The Holler have been excellent. It doesn’t get much better than, * “This is a masterpiece of middle grade fiction, at once summoning the timelessness of life in rural America while blending in modern elements.”—School Library Journal, starred review
Like Rebels, Hope In The Holler is set in the south in rural Kentucky.
The poignant–and funny–story of a girl trying to be brave and find her place in the world after she’s sent to live with scheming relatives.
Right before Wavie’s mother died, she gave Wavie a list of instructions to help her find her way in life, including this one: Be brave, Wavie B! You got as much right to a good life as anybody, so find it! But little did Wavie’s mom know that events would conspire to bring Wavie back to Conley Hollow, the Appalachian hometown her mother tried to leave behind. Now Wavie’s back in the Holler–and in the clutches of her Aunt Samantha Rose. Life with the devilish Samantha Rose and her revolting cousin Hoyt is no picnic, but there’s real pleasure in sleeping in her own mother’s old bed, and making friends with the funny, easygoing kids her aunt calls the “neighborhood-no-accounts.” With their help, Wavie just might be able to prevent her aunt from becoming her legal guardian, and find her courage and place in the world.
To purchase a signed copy of Hope In The Holler, Venmo $12 (includes shipping) to @Lisa-Tyre-1 Please be sure and put your address along with the name for the inscription. Get both to save more: $20 dollars includes shipping.
Signed Copy of There’s No Ham In Hamburger by Kim Zachman
Kim Zachman’s debut book, There’s No Ham In Hamburger, Facts and Folklore About Our Favorite Foods is a real, ahem, “treat”. This is a perfect book for your middle-school reader who is a fan of non-fiction, but honestly, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. The reviews were terrific! Here’s a sampling:
“Accessible and engaging…. A high-interest, tasty treat.”―Booklist
“Told in a breezy, conversational style, the book walks readers through the often surprisingly far-ranging history and folklore of favorite foods from pizza to peanut butter. A good choice for any young gourmand’s bookshelf.” ―Kirkus Reviews
“This title would be a great addition to classes studying food and nutrition. Some parts can even be used in chemistry class. It would also be great a supplement when discussing how an idea or invention is created and then morphs over time, especially when the impact of a changing culture is considered.”―School Library Connection
To order a signed copy, Venmo Kim Zachman $19 (includes shipping) at @kim-zachman. Be sure and include in the description your address and the person’s name for personalization.
Kim followed up the success of her first book with a companion book called There’s No Cream In Cream Soda! Spoiler alert: It’s just as fun as book one! Check out some of the great reviews:
“A lively history of popular alternatives to plain tap water. A sugary spill of facts, fads, and popular fancies.”―Kirkus Reviews
“This engaging title takes readers on a thirst-quenching journey through time, unraveling the stories and histories behind popular drinks. With few other books available on the topic and riveting writing that will keep kids reading, this book is a highly suggested purchase.”―School Library Journal
Again, to purchase a signed copy, Venmo Kim Zachman $19 (includes shipping) at @kim-zachman. Be sure and include in the description your address and the person’s name for personalization. Get both to save more: $35 dollars includes shipping.
What middle-schooler doesn’t love a mystery?! It’s especially fun when it is based on a true story! Did you know that when Nikola Tesla died, his notebook was stolen and never recovered? This is the basis for D’Aurelio’s fun adventure featuring Riley Green, an inventor and all-around smart girl! Riley is certain her lie detector pen will improve her status in a school full of kids from the most powerful families of Washington, D.C. But her plan collapses when her invention idea is stolen, her favorite teacher goes missing, and mysterious threats begin to appear around the capital.
This middle-grade mystery involves a likable female protagonist and the famous scientist Nikola Tesla, and it includes a strong STEM tie in its compelling plot. There has been a resurgence of interest in Tesla, who was a fascinating figure and trailblazing scientist. (Some might say he was a mad scientist.)
Reviews: 5 Stars: Fast-paced thriller middle-grade kids will love. E. Goodwin
5 Stars: Exciting and Suspenseful Book for My Middle Schooler! EBA
To purchase a signed hard copy of The Secret Notebook, Venmo $17 dollars (free shipping) to D.A. D’Aurelio at @Debbie-DAurelio. Please be sure and put your address along with the name for the inscription.
Signed Copy of Bubba and Squirt’s Big Dig To China by Sherry Ellis
Know a young reader who loves adventure? Sherry Ellis’s series featuring siblings Bubba and Squirt are sure to please! Book one introduces us to the dynamic duo: Squirt doesn’t believe Bubba can dig a hole to China. But when the hole swallows them, the kids find themselves in Xi’an, China, surrounded by Terracotta Warriors. It gets worse when the ghost of the first emperor of China appears. He tells them they can’t go home until they find his missing pi. The kids don’t know where to begin until they meet a girl and her grandmother who promise to help find the pendant. Soon they realize they are being followed. And they are no closer to finding the missing pi. Will Bubba and Squirt ever make it back home?
Reviews: Young readers may not even realize that they are learning while being entertained!” -TDC Book Reviews
“Fun, educational, captivating! This is a wonderful middle-grade story with plenty to captivate young readers.” -Deanie Humphrys-Dunne, author”
This is a book that will entertain all ages…Children reading this book will be thoroughly entertained, but also tricked into becoming partially educated about other cultures!” -Kitty Cat at the Library
To purchase a signed copy of Bubba and Squirt’s Big Dig to China, Venmo $9.95 (includes shipping) to @Sherry-Ellis-63. Please be sure and put your address along with the name for the inscription.
Signed Copy of Bubba and Squirt’s Mayan Adventure by Sherry Ellis
The adventures of Bubba and Squirt continue with the second book in the series, Bubba and Squirt’s Mayan Adventure. An ancient Mayan civilization! That’s what Bubba and Squirt find when they travel through the mysterious vortex for another wild adventure. There they meet archeologists who are unearthing priceless artifacts. But someone is stealing them. And an encounter with the Tate Duende awakens magic within Bubba. Throw in the mysterious Alux and a new discovery and things get sticky. Will Bubba and Squirt solve the mystery, or will they be stuck forever in the jungles of Belize?
“. . . a truly wonderful, magical romp through Mayan culture that is both entertaining and educational.” –Readers’ Favorite 5 Star Review
To purchase a signed copy of Bubba and Squirt’s Big Dig to China, Venmo $9.95 (includes shipping) to @Sherry-Ellis-63. Please be sure and put your address along with the name for the inscription. Want both? Combine both for $17.95!
Don’t stress this Christmas! Get your favorite middle-school reader a great book, signed by the author!
To ensure a Christmas arrival, please order by December 17th.