When you run out of good fantasy books, then what do you read?
If you ask two of my kids, the answer is historical fiction, and I agree with them! Historical fiction is awesome!
There is something about a great historical fiction book. Maybe it’s because the stories are based on facts, or maybe they are just great books, but it’s so easy to get lost in a great historical fiction story!
If you’ve got kids who love historical fiction, check out some of our favourites historical fiction books for tweens (9-12 year olds) below.
Some of these books cover some difficult topics. As always the recommended age is just a guide. Please check out these books first to make sure they are a good choice for your children.
Some of the links below are Amazon affiliate links – if you buy a book I get a small commission at no extra cost to you. If you are in Australia I recommend Booktopia
Our Australian Girl Series by various authors. Ages 8+
There are over 40 books by various authors in this series of historical fiction. My girls couldn’t get enough of them when they were around 10 as they feature strong characters and interesting stories. There is also a ‘boy version’ of this series called Do You Dare? which is also great.
Dragon Keeper by Carol Wilkenson Age 8+
Set in ancient China this is the first book in a series of three and all of them weave interesting history into great stories. They are great audiobooks too!
The Great Trouble: A Mystery of London, the Blue Death, and a Boy Called Eel by Deborah Hopkinson Ages 9+
Set in London in the 1850s, this book has a great male main character and lots of great historical details with some science and mystery thrown in.
Stella by Starlight by Sharon M. Draper Age 9+
This book covers some tricky subjects to do with racism in America in the 1930s, but it does so in a way younger kids can understand and without too many horrific details, plus it’s a really great story
A Single Shard by Linda Sue Park. Age 9+
Set in 12th century Korea, this story has a brave and resilient main character and lots of intriguing details. We borrowed this one as an audio book and it’s great!
An Elephant in the Garden by Michael Morpurgo. Age 9+
Loosely based on a true story about an elephant that was rescued from a Belfast zoo during WW2, this story is told from the perspective on a non-nazi family in Germany and is a great read.
Set during (and after) the second world war, this beautiful series of historic fiction books will make you cry as you fall in love with the characters and their stories.
Fever 1793 by Laurie Halse Anderson. Age 10+
This book is based on a true story of a yellow fever epidemic if Philadelphia in 1793 and it will draw you in and have you needing to know what happens to Mattie and her family.
Oracle by Jackie French. Age 10+
Oracle is just one of the awesome historical fictions books by Australian writer Jackie French. We have read so many of her books it is hard to pick a favourite, but we liked Oracle because it was a bit different, set in a Mycenaean court with lots of history, mythology and fantasy making it a great read.
My kids also recommend Pennies for Hitler and the other two books in that series, A Rose for the Anzac Boys, her new Secret History series (we’ve read the first one and loved it), and loads of others. You can find Jackie French’s historical fiction books here.
Playing Beatie Bow by Ruth Park. Age 11+
I read this book when I was a kid and loved it and so have my kids. With a clever time travel twist the main character is transported back to Sydney in the 1800s and has to work out how to live and how to get back.
Do you have any recommendations for historical fiction books for tweens?
We are always looking for new books for our book shelf. If you’ve got a favourite historical fuction title please share it in the comments below so we can check it out!