The only thing better than sinking into a good book, full of characters you love, is the feeling you get when you find out that it's the first in a long-running series of books—and that there will be plenty more adventures to follow featuring the same beloved characters. But it can be tricky to keep up with the other latest publications. Five Books is here to help you keep up to date with new titles recently published in some of the most popular book series for kids and teenagers.
This reading list should also serve as a handy resource when your children are ready to move up a reading level. Find below a selection of enchanting and popular book series aimed at kids of various ages, which will hopefully include the next series they will fall in love with.
Series for Babies and Toddlers
For more reading suggestions, check out our lovingly curated reading lists for children: best kids' books of 2022 and best books for teens of 2022.
Maisy's Recycling Truck
by Lucy Cousins
There are over 100 books about Maisy and her friends. The most recent ones for toddlers are board books about vehicles: in one Maisy drives a recycling truck and in the other an ambulance.
by Jennifer Killick
Dread Wood (book 3). Thriller books for kids with the scares well balanced by humour. Age 9+
The 156-Storey Treehouse
by Andy Griffiths & Terry Denton (Illustrator)
The Treehouse series (book 12). Absurd humour about a treehouse which grows 13 storeys between each book in the series. Graphic novel in black and white, suitable for emerging readers with a taste for silliness, age 6+.
Also out recently Treehouse Tales: Too silly to be told… until now!
Warriors: A Starless Clan
by Erin Hunter
Warriors: A Starless Clan (book 2). Fantasy series about clans of fierce warrior cats for age 8+. A Starless Clan is the eighth arc of the Warriors series, following on from The Broken Code.
by Jeff Kinney
Diary of a Wimpy Kid (book 17). One of the top three bestselling series of all time for 8-12 year olds about the misadventures of Greg, a lazy and manipulative schoolboy. This series, which has very little text, is credited with getting a lot of reluctant readers into reading.
In the related Rowley Jefferson’s Journal series: Rowley Jefferson’s Awesome Friendly Spooky Stories (book 3).
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
by J.K. Rowling & Jim Kay (illustrator)
Illustrated Harry Potter (book 5). This is the fifth of the seven Harry Potter books to be published so far in this large format children's edition. With plenty of colour illustrations it is perfect for the youngest generation of readers, who are just old enough to enjoy the story but still have a preference for illustrated books. Age 8+
Rise of the School for Good and Evil
Soman Chainani, RaidesArt (illustrator)
The School for Good and Evil, prequel to the six book series. Fairytale fantasy series for the contemporary world. Age 11+
Soul of the Deep
by Natasha Bowen
Skin of the Sea (book 2). Fantasy series and love story inspired by West African mythology featuring a mermaid protagonist. Age 13+.
Amari and the Great Game
by B. B. Alston & Godwin Akpan (illustrator)
Supernatural Investigations (book 2). Adventure series with a world of magic just under the surface of the normal world. Age 8+
The Iron Sword
by Julie Kagawa
Evenfall (book 2). Evenfall is a spin-off of the seven-volume Iron Fey fantasy series which starts with The Iron King. Age 13+
The Merciless Ones
by Namina Forna
The Gilded Ones (book 2). West African-inspired fantasy in which a young woman becomes a powerful warrior and fights against oppression. Age 13+
Defend the Dawn
by Brigid Kemmerer
Defy the Night (book 2). Fantasy adventure and romance set in a plague-ridden and corrupt kingdom, featuring a heroine who will do anything for justice. Age 13+
by Tom Percival
Big Bright Feelings (book 7). Picture book series to help children manage emotions, build confidence and navigate social situations. These storybooks are a helpful tool for adults to start conversations with kids about feelings of anxiety, jealousy, etc. Age 3+
Fantastically Great Women Artists and their Stories
by Kate Pankhurst
Fantastically Great Women (book 2). This book features the stories of some of the most influential women in the art world, and young readers will learn a lot about different types of art. Fantastically Great Women Scientists and Their Stories, the first book in this series for readers age 7+, made it onto the Royal Society Young People's Book Prize 2022 shortlist. Pankhurst has also written and illustrated a separate Fantastically Great Women series for children age 5+.
City of Magic
Midnight Magic (book 3). Set in Renaissance Venice, City of Magic is a prequel or companion volume to the first two titles in this medieval mystery adventure series. Age 8+
by Stephanie Blake & translated by Linda Burgess
Simon the Rabbit (book 10). Simon is a mischievous little rabbit. This particular book in the series is a funny adaptation of the cry wolf story. The illustrations are big and expressive, full of movement and humour. The series, which is translated from French, has an animation series spin-off. Age 2+
by Katie & Kevin Tsang
Dragon Realm series (book 5). Fantasy adventure series featuring friendship and dragons for age 9+.
The Arctic Railway Assassin
M G Leonard, Sam Sedgman & Elisa Paganelli (illustrator)
Adventures on Trains (book 6). Train-based detective series for readers age 8+.
Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler (illustrator)
Tales from Acorn Wood (book 8). Board book series for toddlers, with rhyming text and flaps to lift.
Elmer and the Gift
by David McKee
The first book about Elmer the Patchwork Elephant came out in 1968. This is the final book, published posthumously, in this classic series that celebrates difference. Cheerful books for children age 3-6.
Jessi's Secret Language
by Ann M. Martin & Chan Chau
The graphic novel version of The Baby-Sitters Club (book 12). This series, which started in the 1980s, is in the top five bestselling series of all time for the 9-12 age range.
Also: Karen's School Picture in The Baby-Sitters Little Sister series, for children in the 7-10 year age range.
Narwhalicorn and Jelly
by Ben Clanton
Narwhal and Jelly (book 7). Graphic novel series for readers age 5+ about a happy go lucky narwhal and a no nonsense jellyfish.
The Last Kids on Earth and the Forbidden Fortress
Max Brallier, Douglas Holgate (illustrator)
The Last Kids on Earth series (book 8). Illustrated zombie and monster apocalypse action adventure series for for kids, especially reluctant readers, age 8+.
The Treehouse Library
by Anna James & Marco Guadalupi (illustrator)
Pages & Co (book 5). Adventure series featuring bookwanderers (who can travel inside books and talk with the characters they meet there), mysteries, magic and secret manuscripts. Age 9+
Pippa and Pelle in the Winter Snow
by Daniela Drescher
Pippa and Pelle (book 6). Series for toddlers about two elves, with much love of nature. Board book, translated from German.
Planet Omar: Ultimate Rocket Blast
Zanib Mian, Kyan Cheng (illustrator)
Planet Omar series (Book 5). Laugh-out-loud series about an imaginative boy, for age 7+
The Secret School Invasion
by Pamela Butchart & Thomas Flintham (Illustrator)
Baby Aliens series (book 13). Silly humour for newly confident readers age 7+
Tom Gates: Random Acts of Fun
by Liz Pichon
Tom Gates series (book 19). Humorous look at the everyday life of a boy who generally tries to get away with doing the minimum at school. For age 8+, especially popular with reluctant or struggling readers.
Starfell: Willow Moss and the Magic Thief
by Dominique Valente & Sarah Warburton (Illustrator)
Starfell series (book 4). Richly illustrated fantasy series full of magic for readers age 8+
Ali Cross: The Secret Detective
by James Patterson
Ali Cross (book 3). The son of Alex Cross, of James Patterson’s detective series for adults, now has a series of his own. The young Ali Cross is following in his father’s footsteps as a detective. Age 9+
The Final Gambit
by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
The Inheritance Games (book 3). Intrigue, mystery and romance with billions of dollars in the balance. Age 13+
Skulduggery Pleasant: Until the End
by Derek Landy
Skulduggery Pleasant (book 15). Dark fantasy series about a detective, her mentor and other friends and allies. Age 11+
by Michelle Paver
Chronicles of Ancient Darkness (book 9). Concluding volume in meticulously researched adventure series full of nature, animals and magic set in the Stone Age for readers age 9+.
Family of Liars
by E. Lockhart
This novel set in the 1980s is the prequel to psychological thriller We Were Liars. Family of Liars focuses on Cady’s aunt Carrie. Age 13+
The Strangeworlds Travel Agency: The Secrets of the Stormforest
by L. D. Lapinski
The Strangeworlds Travel Agency (book 3). Each suitcase transports you to a different world if you step inside. Age 9+
Aru Shah and the Nectar of Immortality
by Roshani Chokshi
Pandava Novels (book 5). This series follows Aru Shah, an Indian American school girl who happens to be the reincarnation of Arjuna. She must unite the avatars of the five Pandavas (demigod warrior princes) of the Mahābhārata. For readers age 8-14 (Aru is 12 in the first novel and grows older through each book), and perfect for fans of Rick Riordan.
Struan Murray & Manuel Sumberac (illustrator)
Orphans of the Tide (book 3). Adventure series for age 8+
by Rotraut Susanne Berner
All Around Bustletown (book 5). Large format board books by a well known German illustrator. These are not storybooks. Instead there are seven detailed double page pictures for children to look at and make up their own stories around the pictures. Age 2-6.
Rivals on the Track
by Annelise Gray
Circus Maximus (book 2). This is the sequel to Race to the Death, which made our best books for kids 2021 list. In this volume, which is set in Roman North Africa, Dido gets another chance to compete in the dangerous world of chariot racing. Age 9+
A Storm of Sisters
by Michelle Harrison
A Pinch of Magic Adventure (book 4). Atmospheric series about sisters and magic for readers age 8 and up.
The Fascinating Bug Book for Kids: 500 Startling Facts!
by Krystal Monique Toney
Fascinating Facts (book 7). Science and engineering oriented non-fiction books on various topics for readers age 7+.
The Flames of Hope
by Tui T. Sutherland
Wings of Fire (book 15). Fantasy adventure series with dragon protagonists for age 9+.
by Nnedi Okorafor
The Nsibidi Scripts (book 3). West-African inspired fantasy by award-winning Nigerian American author. Age 12+
by Tracy Wolff
Crave series (book 4). Paranormal romance fantasy series set in a boarding school, good for fans of Twilight. Age 14+
Sunlight on the Snow Leopard
Mary Pope Osborne, AG Ford (illustrator)
Magic Tree House (book 36). This time travel series is a perfect introduction to chapter books for readers age 6 and up. There was a rebranding/renumbering in 2017 and there is now also the Merlin Missions books for more confident readers. In addition, there is a Fact Trackers series. In this story Jack and Annie go to Nepal. The Fact Tracker companion volume is called Snow Leopards and Other Wild Cats.
A Case of Misfortune
by Sophie Cleverly
The Violet Veil Mysteries (book 2). Mystery series set in late Victorian England for readers age 9+.
by Yoon Ha Lee
A Thousand Worlds (book 2). Tiger Honor is a sequel to Dragon Pearl (one of the first books published by Rick Riordan Presents), but told from a different protagonist's point of view. Science fiction infused with Korean mythology for readers age 8+.
Find Your Kindred Spirits
by Lize Meddings
The Sad Ghost Club (book 2). Graphic novel in black and white about feeling nervous about social interaction, loneliness and friendship. Age 11+
The Burning Swift
by Joseph Elliott
Concluding volume in the Shadow Skye trilogy. A third character, Sigrid, is on the scene (the first book was alternately narrated by Jaime and Agatha, who probably has Down's syndrome). Fast paced fantasy adventure set in a mythical Scotland with award-winning audio edition. Age 12+
Gangsta Granny Strikes Again!
David Walliams, Tony Ross (illustrator)
Gangsta Granny (book 2). Laugh out loud adventure about Ben and his grandmother, who happens to be a jewel thief under the alias Black Cat. Age 8+
Asterix and the Griffin
Jean-Yves Ferri & Didier Conrad (illustrator)
Asterix (album 39). New titles are still coming out in this bestselling comic series of all time. The current writer-illustrator team was mentored by Albert Uderzo, one of the original co-creators.
Aristotle and Dante Dive Into the Waters of the World
by Benjamin Alire Sáenz
Sequel to the multi-award winning Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe about two teenage boys whose friendship gradually transitions to romance, about their family relationships and exploration of identity and sexuality. This second volume continues the story of their relationship and emotional lives. Award-winning audio version narrated by Lin-Manuel Miranda. Age 14+
The Nobleman's Guide to Scandal and Shipwrecks
by Mackenzi Lee
Montague Siblings (book 3). The third book in this series of historical novels is about Adrian, the youngest of three aristocratic English siblings. This volume features family secrets and voyages to the pirate courts of Rabat, Portuguese islands, the canals of Amsterdam, and Arctic waters. Age 14+
Terciel & Elinor
by Garth Nix
This prequel (book 6) to The Old Kingdom series tells the love story of Sabriel’s parents. Fantasy for readers age 14+.
by Tahereh Mafi
Shatter Me (novella 5). Dystopian romance fantasy thriller series structured with novels interspersed with novellas. This novella is told from Warner’s point of view, following the events of Imagine Me (book 6). Age 14+
Two for Joy
by Amy McCulloch & Zoe Sugg
The Magpie Society (book 2). Modern gothic thriller series set at a boarding school with disturbing secrets. Age 13+
The King of Koraha
by Maria V. Snyder
Archives of the Invisible Sword trilogy (book 3). Fantasy series for readers age 13+, should suit fans of Tomb Raider.
City of the Dead
James Patterson & Mindy McGinnis
Hawk (book 2), linked with James Patterson's Maximum Ride series. Post-apocalyptic fantasy for readers age 13+.
by Brandon Sanderson
Skyward (book 3). Science fiction series with galaxy-wide war and a resourceful teenage protagonist. Age 12+
by Patience Agbabi
The Leap Cycle (book 2). Science fiction series with a protagonist who has time travelling powers. Age 9+
Sapiens: A Graphic History Volume Two
Yuval Noah Harari, David Vandermeulen & Daniel Casanave (illustrator)
The Pillars of Civilization is the second volume in this graphic history adaptation of the bestselling Sapiens book, primarily aimed at teenagers and young adults. The first volume was The Birth of Humankind. Volume 2 deals with the implications of the agricultural revolution.
The Fowl Twins Get What They Deserve
by Eoin Colfer
Fowl Twins (book 3). Like their older brother Artemis, the Fowl twins are criminal masterminds despite their young age. For readers age 10+
Rise of the World Eater
by Jamie Littler
Concluding volume in the Frostheart trilogy. Fantasy adventure series in snow and ice for readers age 8+
Luna Loves Dance
Joseph Coelho & Fiona Lumbers (illustrator)
Luna Loves series (book 3). Picture book series for children age 3+ about Luna who loves the good things in life, such as art and going to the library.
by Malorie Blackman
Noughts + Crosses series (book 6), the final book in this series set in an alternative 21st century Britain, featuring love, racial and social inequality, and high stakes intrigue. Age 12+
Toto the Ninja Cat and the Legend of the Wildcat
by Dermot O’Leary & Nick East (Illustrator)
Toto the Ninja Cat (book 5). The adventures of Toto and her brother Silver are an engaging introduction to chapter books for children age 6+, with plenty of illustrations.
As Good as Dead
by Holly Jackson
The Good Girl’s Guide to Murder (book 3). Concluding volume in crime thriller trilogy with young protagonist Pip, who investigates some properly scary crime. Age 14+
Also recently published: Kill Joy, a prequel novella.
Jordan Ifueko, narrated by Joniece Abbott-Pratt
This is the sequel to the beautiful West African inspired fantasy novel Raybearer for age 12+.
Once Upon a Crime
by Robin Stevens
A Murder Most Unladylike Collection. This is not a new novel in the detective series for readers age 8+, but a collection of six short mysteries.
The Battle for Roar
Jenny McLachlan & Ben Mantle (illustrator)
The final book in The Land of Roar trilogy. Fantasy adventure about twin brother and sister for readers age 8+.
Rule of Wolves
by Leigh Bardugo
King of Scars (book 2), featuring magic and warring kingdoms, is the seventh book in the Grishaverse fantasy series for readers age 12+, which starts with Shadow and Bone.
We Free the Stars
by Hafsah Faizal
Sands of Arawiya series (book 2). Romance and adventure in an Arabia-inspired fantasy world for readers age 14+.
Pip and Posy: The Birthday Party
Camilla Reid & Axel Scheffler (illustrator)
Pip and Posy (book 11). Simple stories to engage toddlers, about the ups and downs of two best friends.
The Smallest Kitten
by Holly Webb & Sophy Williams (illustrator)
Animal Stories, an apparently endless series about kittens and puppies for children age 5+. Also out recently, Kitten Love, a collection of three stories: 'Lost in the Storm', 'The Curious Kitten' and 'The Homeless Kitten'.
You Choose: Fairy Tales
Pippa Goodhart & Nick Sharratt (illustrator)
You Choose (book 4). Children can be in charge in this picture book series, which allows readers to create their own stories, with endless possibilities on every page. Age 3+
Dog Man: Mothering Heights
by Dav Pilkey
Dog Man (book 10). Graphic novel series in colour for age 6+ about crime-fighting dog man.
The Bolds Go Green
Julian Clary & David Roberts (illustrator)
The Bolds (book 6). Funny series about a family of hyenas who disguise themselves and try to blend in as humans, for children age 7+. Richly illustrated.
White Fox in the Forest
Chen Jiatong, Viola Wang (illustrator) and Jennifer Feeley (translator)
White Fox series (book 2). Quest series translated from Chinese about a fox for age 8+
Nightfall in New York
Katherine Woodfine & Karl James Mountford (Illustrator)
Taylor & Rose Secret Agents (book 4). Two young girl detectives turn their talents to espionage in this historical novel series for age 9+
This series follows on from The Sinclair Mysteries.
The Crackledawn Dragon
by Abi Elphinstone
The Unmapped Chronicles series (book 4). Environmental issues in a magical adventure series for age 8+
The Swallows’ Flight
by Hilary McKay
Whereas The Skylarks’ War was set against the backdrop of the First World War, this sequel or companion volume is a story of family and friendship on opposite sides of the Second World War. Age 9+
The Storm Keepers’ Battle
by Catherine Doyle
Storm Keeper Trilogy (book 3). Fantasy set on a remote island off Ireland for readers age 9+
The Desolations of Devil's Acre
by Ransom Riggs
Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children (book 6, concluding volume). At the start of the series a boy follows clues to a mystery that spans different worlds and times. As he gets to know the residents of the magical place known as Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, as well as the children's special powers and their enemies, the mystery and danger deepen. Age 12+
Chain of Iron
by Cassandra Clare
The Last Hours series (book 2). Fantasy, danger and romance set in London and Paris at the start of the 20th century. The Last Hours is the sequel series to The Infernal Devices series in the Shadowhunters Chronicles, which is among the top ten bestselling young adult series of all time. Age 14+
Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone
by J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, published in 1997, is the first book in the Harry Potter series and introduces the character of Harry Potter. It’s no secret that this is the book that got a whole generation of children reading, and the book doesn’t disappoint. We learn about Harry’s miserable life living in a cupboard under the stairs in the house of his ghastly aunt and uncle followed by the liberating news that he is a famous wizard and will not remain the downtrodden orphan forever. Leaving the direness of suburbia behind, he goes off to boarding school at Hogwarts.
Stories of English children going to boarding school have been popular fare for generations, and the combination of clever wizarding/magical touches with the boarding school format are a fun backdrop to the various adventures that take place. Also, unlike later books in the series, it’s not an overly long book.
Note: In the US, the book was published as Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, which isn’t as good a title. At the time, J.K. Rowling was an unknown writer, and probably not in a position to point out it didn’t make as much sense.
Harry Potter: the Complete Series
by J.K. Rowling
It’s quite fun to acquire the books in the Harry Potter series one by one, but if you want to get them all in one go, there’s a variety of boxsets to choose from, including fancy gift sets and versions that are specifically for adults. If you’d like to listen to the Harry Potter books as a set of audiobooks, they are all read by British actor Stephen Fry, but there does not seem to be an option to buy them as a complete set.
Diary of a Wimpy Kid (Box Set)
by Jeff Kinney
An hilariously funny portrait of family life. Bound to delight any child and make them giggle out loud.
” I think it’s really sweet the way she lives. When they get a shop-bought thing, they all get excited because most of the time they have to make everything themselves—the dresses, the food, the drink, the entertainment. In one of the books Mary, Laura’s older sister goes blind and from then on Laura has to be the one who has the full weight of making money.” Read more...
“It’s all the Greek gods and goddesses as if they’re in high school. They’re all kids. Their school is MOA, which stands for Mount Olympus Academy. There are these four main girls, Persephone, Athena, Aphrodite and Artemis, who are basically all friends.” Read more...
“Warrior Cats. It’s just really different from all the other books I’ve read. It really gets you into the place you’re reading about. There are so many different cats, and you end up knowing all the names, as if you actually know them in real life. The way the author makes you believe in the book is really amazing. She can put so much description and so many different feelings into the book, so that you feel you’re there.” Read more...
Best Series for 10 Year Olds, recommended by Izzy
Everyone wants to get their kids reading, and a really gripping series is a great way of developing their inner bookworm. Izzy, a 10-year-old girl living in the UK, talks us through her favourite series for kids.