40 Outstanding Historical Fiction Books For 5th Graders (Age 10) 

Reading is not only a great pastime but also a valuable way to learn about history. Historical fiction takes readers on a journey to different times and places, making history come alive.

In this post, we will explore 40 Outstanding Historical Fiction Books For 5th Graders.

In fact:

The books mentioned in this post are based on comprehensive research and reviews and are considered some of the best Historical Fiction Books For 5th Graders.

Are You In a Hurry?

If you’re in a hurry, your search is over! We have selected three highly recommended historical fiction books.

Overview Of The 40 Outstanding Historical Fiction Books For 5th Graders

Let’s dive right in…

Note: You can purchase these books by clicking on the title link. Please note that the links to purchase these books are affiliate links from Amazon.

Chains

Bravery

“Chains” by Laurie Halse Anderson is a story set during the War. Isabel and her sister, Ruth, want to be free, but they end up with a mean couple. The couple doesn’t care about the American Revolution and treats them badly. This story is about bravery, loyalty, and fighting for independence.

My Brother Sam Is Dead

Family

“My Brother Sam Is Dead” by James Lincoln Collier tells the story of Tim Meeker, who respects his older brother, Sam, a part of the American Revolution. However, their father is a British supporter. As the war starts, Tim is faced with a difficult choice between loyalty to his brother and his father. This novel explores the complexities of family, loyalty, and the impact of war on relationships.

Toliver’s Secret

Bravery

“Toliver’s Secret” by Esther Wood Brady is a story set during the Revolutionary War. Ellen begins on a mission to deliver a hidden message to General Washington. However, she faces numerous challenges along the way. This historical novel takes readers on a suspenseful journey through a critical time in American history, showcasing courage and determination.

The Witch of Blackbird Pond

Friendship

“The Witch of Blackbird Pond” by Elizabeth George Speare is a novel set in 1687. Kit Tyler, after leaving her home, faces challenges in her new surroundings. Kit finds comfort in a friendship with Hannah Tupper. This book explores themes of identity and friendship.

Behind Rebel Lines

Bravery

“Behind Rebel Lines” by Seymour Reit is a story set during the American Civil War. Emma is determined to join the Union Army. She hides herself as a man and takes on various roles, risking her life for the Union. This book shows bravery and determination, as Emma navigates the challenges of war.

Guns for General Washington

Bravery

“Guns for General Washington” by Seymour Reit tells the story of Will’s brave journey during Independence. He faced the cold winter to take cannons from Fort to Boston. This helped George Washington in an important battle. The book shows how heroes shaped the future.

Zia 

“Zia” by Scott O’Dell follows the journey of a young girl named Zia, who dreams of finding her aunt on the Island. Zia comes to Santa to fulfill her dream and faces many challenges while trying to rescue her aunt. This story shows the bravery of a young girl.

A Journey to the New World

Bravery

“A Journey to the New World” by Kathryn Lasky follows the adventures of Mem, who arrives in the New World with her parents after a challenging journey. Mem is full of courage, as she adopts her new life despite the harsh events. This story explores bravery, friendship, and the spirit of exploration.

Jefferson’s Sons

Bravery

“Jefferson’s Sons” by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley tells a story of America’s history. The story is seen through the eyes of three children. This book shows us the challenges of Jefferson’s children and helps us understand America’s past.

Kaya: The Journey Begins

Strength

“Kaya: The Journey Begins” by Janet Shaw is a story about Kaya and her beloved horse. When Kaya boasts their speed and enters a risky race, she puts them both in danger and faces insult. Determined to regain trust, Kaya faces a bigger challenge and must find a way to escape and save her town. This story explores courage, trust, and the strength to overcome trouble.

Dear America

Strength

“Dear America” by Kristiana Gregory is a diary of Jane during the Revolutionary War. Through her eyes, readers face the challenges her family and neighbors face as they make important choices during this critical winter. This book provides a unique perspective on the struggles and courage of those who lived through this historic time.

Shadows at Jamestown

Adventure

“Shadows at Jamestown” by Steven K. Smith is a book that takes you back in time to historic Jamestown. Three kids are helping, Professor. They find important items connected to Captain John Smith. But then they discover something strange. They work together to solve the mystery and learn about Jamestown’s history.

I Survived the Eruption of Mount St

Survival

“I Survived the Eruption of Mount St. Helens” by Lauren Tarshis is a story about Jessie, who respects the beautiful Mount. But one day, the volcano erupts suddenly, and it’s very dangerous, putting Jessie’s life in danger. Follows Jessie, as she tries to escape this big disaster and survives one of the worst events in America’s history.

Bud, Not Buddy

Determination

“Bud, Not Buddy” by Christopher Paul Curtis is set in 1936. Bud is facing tough times, being motherless. But he has his suitcase full of special things. With a clue left by his mom, Bud believes he can find his father. Determined Bud begins on a journey to find his father, facing challenges along the way.

Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry

Bravery

“Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry” by Mildred D. Taylor is set in Mississippi and tells the story of the Logan family. They face racism and injustice. The story centers around Cassie, a strong girl, who learns the importance of finding inner strength. This story sheds light on the challenges faced by African American families during a rough time in history.

I Survived the Wellington Avalanche

Bravery

“I Survived the Wellington Avalanche” by Lauren Tarshis is a story about a dangerous snowstorm in the Mountains. Two trains got stuck in heavy snow, and passengers had to wait for days, hoping for rescue. Through the eyes of a young survivor, the book explores the tough experience and its impact on her life.

Al Capone Does My Shirts

Bravery

“Al Capone Does My Shirts” by Gennifer Choldenko is a story set on Island, where a tough prison is surrounded by water. Moose, a young boy, finds himself living on the island with his family because his father works there. This novel takes readers on a journey through the challenges and adventures Moose faces on the island.

Paperboy

Courage

“Paperboy” by Vince Vawter is about Little Man, who is great at baseball but has trouble in speaking. The book is about friendship, bravery, and facing tough situations with courage.

Adventure

“Navigating Early” by Clare Vanderpool is a story about Jack, who leaves his home to attend a boys’ boarding school. There, he befriends Early and forms a deep connection with Early. Together, they begin on a journey to find a great black bear. Along the way, they meet strange characters and make shocking discoveries. This story explores the power of friendship and the thrill of adventure.

The Watsons Go to Birmingham

Family

“The Watsons Go to Birmingham” by Christopher Paul Curtis is a story about the Watson family’s trip to visit Grandma in Birmingham. Set in American history, the family faces different challenges. Despite the difficult times, the power of laughter and the bond of family help them navigate through difficulties. This book reminds us of the importance of unity and family bond.

Glory Be

Friendship

“Glory Be” by Augusta Scattergood is a story set in a Mississippi town. Glory, a girl, is facing challenges with her best friend. The arrival of a new girl from the North adds tension in the town. Through this novel, Augusta explores themes of family and friendship.

Winnie’s Great War 

Kindness

“Winnie’s Great War” by Sophie Blackall is a story based on the true journey of the bear that inspired Winnie. The story takes us from her early days in the Canadian forest to her adventures across the country. Eventually, she finds herself at the London Zoo, where she meets Robin.

By the Great Horn Spoon

Adventure

In “By the Great Horn Spoon” by Sid Fleischman, Jack begins on a journey to California to find gold and save his aunt’s beloved estate. Accompanied by his loyal friend, Jack faces thrilling adventures and challenges.

Old Yeller

Kindness

In “Old Yeller” by Fred Gipson, Travis takes care of his family and farm while his father is away. Living in the 1860s, Travis faces new and challenging responsibilities. Eventually, a lost yellow dog becomes Travis’s best friend. This novel captures the bond between a boy and his dog and has become a beloved classic in literature.

Running Out of Time 

Survival

“Running Out of Time” by Margaret Peterson Haddix is set in in 1840. Jessie Keyser’s village is facing a dangerous attack. To save her friends and herself, Jessie must escape into a strange world. This story explores Jessie’s thrilling journey to survive.

Soft Rain

Courage

“Soft Rain” by Cornelia Cornelissen tells the story of Soft Rain, a girl who is forced to leave her land. Separated from her family, she faces problems and loss, but her courage and hope are restored when she reunites with her father. This novel sheds light on the strength of the people during a challenging time in history.

Sing Down the Moon

Survival

“Sing Down the Moon” by Scott O’Dell is a historical novel that tells the story of the Navajo tribe’s journey from their homeland to Fort Sumner. The narrative is centered around Morning, who bravely tells their struggle for survival. This story highlights themes of strength and courage.

Freewater

Survival

In “Freewater” by Amina Luqman-Dawson, Homer escapes with his sister Ada, seeking safety and freedom. They discover a hidden community called Freewater. Homer finds new friends but faces a new danger that could threaten Freewater. With courage and determination, he sets out on a mission to save both his mother and his newfound home.

Bound for Oregon

Survival

In “Bound for Oregon” by Jean Van Leeuwen, the family begins on a challenging miles journey to Oregon Territory. They face rough paths and problems. As winter approaches, their strength and determination are put to the test.

The River Between Us

Unity

“The River Between Us” by Richard Peck takes place in 1861. Tilly’s brother wants to join the North’s army, and their family is facing tough times. A mysterious girl arrives with a quiet friend, causing rumors in town. This book explores the challenges of a country and the special connections people make during uncertain times.

Ann Fights for Freedom

Bravery

“Ann Fights for Freedom” by Nikki Shannon Smith is about a young girl named Ann, who is a captive. She loves being with her family, but when their owner wants to sell her and her brother to different people, Ann decides they must escape using the Underground Railroad. Follow Ann on her journey to freedom in the North, where she faces many challenges.

Brighty of the Grand Canyon

Justice

“Brighty of the Grand Canyon” by Marguerite Henry is about a little burro named Brighty who lived in the Grand Canyon. He befriends a prospector. When the prospector is killed by a bad person, loyal Brighty goes on a brave journey to find justice.

The Mostly True Adventures of Homer P. Figg

Adventure

“The Mostly True Adventures of Homer P. Figg” by Rodman Philbrick is a story about Homer. He runs away from his home to find his brother, Harold, who was forced to join the Union Army. With courage, Homer faces challenges and meets interesting characters during the Civil War.

Strawberry Girl 

Kindness

“Strawberry Girl” by Lois Lenski is a story about Birdie Boyer, who moves to Florida with her family. Excited to pick strawberries, Birdie faces challenges as they start their new farm. This story highlights the power of kindness and hard work.

The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate

Self-Discovery

“The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate” by Jacqueline Kelly is about Tate and is set in 1899. She explores nature with her grandfather and faces challenges as a girl with six brothers. This book captures the essence of growing up with spirit.

A Place to Hang the Moon

Family

“A Place to Hang the Moon” by Kate Albus is a story set in London. When William, Edmund, and Anna lose their grandmother, they need a guardian to stay together. They begin a journey to find a home that could become their forever family. Through difficulties, they discover the importance of family.

Allies

Sacrifice

“Allies” by Alan Gratz is a novel set during World War II, June 6, 1944. As the Nazis endanger to conquer Europe, the Allied nations unite for a top-secret mission. Dee, a young U.S. soldier, faces the weight of the war on his shoulders as he heads towards the French coast. He is joined by Samira, Henry, and James. With danger at every turn, these heroes must race against time to complete their missions and secure victory. This story highlights the courage and sacrifices made by those who fought in history.

I Survived the Nazi Invasion

Sacrifice

“I Survived the Nazi Invasion” by Lauren Tarshis is a book set during one of the darkest periods in history. Max and Zena, two siblings, face the harsh realities of living under Nazi rule. When their father is taken away, they begin a daring escape into the forest. This story shows the courage and strength of those who survived the horrors of World War II.

Snow Treasure

Bravery

“Snow Treasure” by Marie McSwigan is a story set in the winter of 1940 in a small village under Nazi rule. When Nazi troops threaten their village, Peter and the children create a plan to outsmart the enemy. This story of bravery and creativity has fascinated readers, showing the strength of children during challenging times.

Resistance

Bravery

“Resistance” by Jennifer Nielsen is a powerful historical novel set in Poland. Chaya, a teenager, faces dangers as she becomes a courier, smuggling food and papers between people. This story shows the bravery and determination of those who fought against Nazi rule.

Conclusion

We hope that our list of historical fiction books for 5th graders has given you some great options to choose from and you and your 10 year old will have the joy of exploring these historical fiction books together.

The historical fiction books recommended in this list have been thoroughly researched and reviewed, and are considered some of the best Historical Fiction Books For 5th Graders. While I may not have personally read all of these books, they have been highly recommended by other readers.

We would love to hear from you about which book your 5th grader enjoyed the most, or if there is a favorite book that we missed. Please leave your comments and feedback below.

Best wishes and happy reading to you and your family!

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