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Inventions: Chapter Books For Kids

Looking for a list of the best kids books about inventions?

Children’s literature has many notable options when it comes to inventions. To help you find the right books for you and your young reader, we’ve compiled a list of the best kids books about inventions.

Our list includes chapter books. The chapter books on our list are generally best for elementary through early middle school age tween kids. You can filter to sort by the best book type for your kid, and you can also use our table of contents to jump to particular topics you think your kid will enjoy.

When it comes to children’s stories about inventions, there are a variety of titles. This list covers everything, from classics like The Invention of Hugo Cabret to popular sellers like Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator to some of our favorite hidden gems like The Templeton Twins Have An Idea.

We hope this list of kids books about inventions can be a helpful resource for parents, teachers, and others searching for a new book! As you explore the list, please comment below to let us know what books you would add.

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Top 10 Books About Inventions

#1
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#2
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The Templeton Twins Have An Idea
Written by Ellis Weiner & illustrated by Jeremy Holmes
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 9-12

Suppose there were 12-year-old twins, a boy and girl named John and Abigail Templeton. Let’s say John was pragmatic and played the drums, and Abigail was theoretical and solved cryptic crosswords. Now suppose their father was a brilliant, if sometime confused, inventor. And suppose that another set of twins—adults—named Dean D. Dean and Dan D. Dean, kidnapped the Templeton twins and their ridiculous dog in order to get their father to turn over one of his genius (sort of) inventions. Yes, kidnapped. Wouldn’t it be fun to read about that? Oh please. It would so. Now in paperback, this is just the first in a series perfect for boys and girls who are smart, clever, and funny (just like the twins), and enjoy reading adventurous stories (who doesn’t?!). And now, there’s more!

#3
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The Star Thief
Written by Lindsey Becker
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

The constellations come to life in this imaginative fantasy adventure debut. Honorine’s life as a maid at the Vidalia mansion is rather dull, dusting treasures from faraway places and daydreaming in front of maps of the world. But everything changes when she catches two brutish sailors ransacking Lord Vidalia’s study, and then follows a mysterious girl with wings out into the night…. Suddenly, Honorine is whisked into the middle of a battle between the crew of a spectacular steamship and a band of mythical constellations. The stars in the sky have come to life to defend themselves against those who want to harness their powers. Much to her surprise, Honorine is the crux of it all, the center of an epic clash between magic and science, the old ways and the new. But can this spirited young girl bring both sides of a larger-than-life fight together before they unleash an evil power even older than the stars?

#4
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Ellie, Engineer: In the Spotlight
Written by Jackson Pearce
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Ellie the Engineer is back in a third charming, hilarious, illustrated story filled with creative, STEM-powered fun! “Look out, Junie B. Jones! Ellie the engineer is thinking, making, creating, and showing enthusiasm and brilliance with her creations!” - School Library Connection on Ellie, Engineer Ellie enters a pageant with her best friend Kit, which means lots of glitter, hairspray, and chances to make new friends. After all, Ellie has lots of engineering ideas to help the other girls with their talents, like building a light-up skateboard ramp for Kit! But one contestant, Kit’s not-so-nice pageant rival Melody, makes fun of Ellie’s tool belt and thinks engineering is messy. And when Melody’s rabbit—part of her magic act—goes missing, Ellie knows that she can build a contraption to catch him. But Melody’s comments have made Ellie start to doubt herself—what if a pageant isn’t a place for engineering? With Ellie’s designs and sketches throughout, and her fun guide to electricity and circuits in the back, the continuation of this delightful series will leave young readers laughing and inspired to create.

#5
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Camp Hero Double Trouble
Written by Gina Bellisario & illustrated by Jessika von Innerebner
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 7-8

Ellie is excited to go to Camp Hero, where the motto is: Where Super Friendships are Made! But when Ellie’s cabinmates, superhero twins Mona and Leona, give her the cold shoulder, Ellie decides to use her parents’ latest invention to get them to like her. The invention works too well, and the twins start fighting over Ellie! Can Ellie stop their double trouble and find out why they weren’t friendly to her in the first place?

#6
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The Mysterious Sea
Written by Hope Erica Schultz
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 9-12

Prince Donal likes inventing things—the weirder the better. All of his inventions are practical, but some of them are a bit odd. Still, they come in handy when Donal and his three best friends set out to explore the area around the Waveborn Islands. Many centuries ago, someone built the fantastic machines that allows the Waveborn Islands to rise or fall back into the sea. Donal would give anything to study any records those people left behind. Fortunately, the first uncharted island they find seems to be filled with relics of that ancient people. Unfortunately, Donal and the other prince and princesses aren’t the first ones to find the island. But if they trigger the island’s booby traps, they just might be the last.

#7
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To the Future, Ben Franklin
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

Track the facts about the great printer, inventor, and Founding Father, Benjamin Franklin!

When Jack and Annie came back from their adventure in Magic Tree House #32: To the Future, Ben Franklin! they had lots of questions. What was Ben Franklin’s first job? How did a kite teach him about electricity? What are some of Ben’s most famous inventions? Why did he have so many nicknames? Find out the answers to these questions and more as Jack and Annie track the facts about Benjamin Franklin.

Filled with up-to-date information, photographs, illustrations, and fun tidbits from Jack and Annie, the Fact Trackers are the perfect way for kids to find out more about the topics they discover in their favorite Magic Tree House adventures.

#8
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Snared: Lair of the Beast
Written by Adam Jay Epstein
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Thanks to a crew of misfit treasure-seekers, Wily Snare has assumed his rightful place as King of Panthasos. Wily knew how to be a great trapsmith—devising and building various contraptions to keep plunderers at bay—but he has no idea how to be a good king.

And he hasn’t escaped his past. Stalag, the Cavern Mage who once kept him locked away, is amassing an army of stone soldiers to seize the kingdom. Wily’s only hope is to tame a lair beast—the one creature that stands a chance against Stalag’s army. But first, Wily and his friends will need to survive the journey to the fabled “Below”—where the lair beast dwells.

This action-packed fantasy adventure is filled with snappy dialogue, dangerous creatures, spirited adventure, and inventive magic to appeal to readers 8–12.

#9
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House of Robots: Robot Revolution
Written by James Patterson and Chris Grabenstein & illustrated by Juliana Neufeld
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Robots on strike! Sammy’s underappreciated mechanical helpers are causing chaos in book 3 of the bestselling House of Robots series. After a few early glitches in their relationship, Sammy and his “bro-bot” E are now fast friends. In fact, E is such a valued member of the family that the other electronic occupants of the House of Robots are feeling sorely unappreciated. And when Sammy’s inventor mom becomes distracted by a top-secret project, the robots soon begin to fall into disrepair. Cue a robot revolt, with the droids wreaking harmless havoc in the house! Armed with pranks like glue in the shampoo bottles and flying toast missiles, the robots demand to be cared for. It’s up to Sammy and his disabled sister Maddie to keep the peace until his mom reveals her secret project…and why it was worth the wait.

#10
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Captain Underpants and the Sensational Saga of Sir Stinks-A-Lot
Written & illustrated by Dav Pilkey
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 7-18

There’s something rotten in the state of Ohio, and it’s smellier than a pile of putrid gym socks! Steer clear — it’s Sir Stinks-A-Lot!

George and Harold, and their doubles, Yesterday George and Yesterday Harold, have a good thing going. Two of them go to school, while the other two hide in the tree house and play video games all day — then they switch! But when their malicious gym teacher, Mr. Meaner, creates a method of mind-control that turns their fellow students into attentive, obedient, perfect children, the future of all humanity will be in their hands!

Table of Contents
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Books About Inventions and Science And Technology

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How to Become an Accidental Genius
Written by Elizabeth MacLeod and Frieda Wishinsky & illustrated by Jenn Playford
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 9-12

Don’t be afraid to try! Make connections! Be persistent! Ask questions and never take no for an answer! Learn the secrets and amazing stories of successful inventors! How to Become an Accidental Genius is full of inspiring tales of famous and lesserknown inventors who have changed the world, from George Washington Carver, Mary Anderson (inventor of the windshield wiper) and inventor and actress Hedy Lamarr to Frank Epperson (of Popsicle fame) and Mary Sherman Morgan (The Woman Who Saved the U.S. Space Race). Readers will be amazed at the inventiveness of these geniuses. The book focuses on inventors from North America but includes stories from around the world. Organized into eleven chapters that highlight the qualities inventors have in common, the book also features profiles of inventive kids and teenagers.

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Who Was Thomas Alva Edison?
Written by Margaret Frith and Who HQ & illustrated by John O'Brien
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

One day in 1882, Thomas Edison flipped a switch that lit up lower Manhattan with incandescent light and changed the way people live ever after. The electric light bulb was only one of thousands of Edison’s inventions, which include the phonograph and the kinetoscope, an early precursor to the movie camera. As a boy, observing a robin catch a worm and then take flight, he fed a playmate a mixture of worms and water to see if she could fly! Here’s an accessible, appealing biography with 100 black-and-white illustrations.

Honorable Mentions
Frank Einstein and the EvoBlaster Belt book
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Women Who Launched the Computer Age book
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Frank Einstein and the Space-time Zipper book
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The Wright Brothers: Nose-Diving into History book
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  1. Frank Einstein and the EvoBlaster Belt - More clever science experiments, funny jokes, and robot hijinks await readers in book four of the New York Times bestselling Frank Einstein chapter book series from the mad scientist team of Jon Scieszka and Brian Biggs. The perfect combination to engage and entertain readers, the series features real science facts with adventure and humor, making these books ideal for STEM education. This latest installment examines the quest to unlock the power behind the science of “all connected life.” Kid-genius and inventor Frank Einstein loves figuring out how the world works by creating household contraptions that are part science, part imagination, and definitely unusual. In the series opener, an uneventful experiment in his garage-lab, a lightning storm, and a flash of electricity bring Frank’s inventions—the robots Klink and Klank—to life! Not exactly the ideal lab partners, the wisecracking Klink and the overly expressive Klank nonetheless help Frank attempt to perfect his inventions. In the fourth book in the series, Frank—along with his best friend, Watson, and Klink and Klank—once again finds himself in competition with his classmate and archrival T. Edison and his sign-language-speaking sidekick, Mr. Chimp, over Frank’s newest invention: the EvoBlaster Belt, which allows the user to evolve and devolve into other forms of life, blasting from one species to another. Integrating real science facts with wacky humor, a silly cast of characters, and science fiction, this uniquely engaging series is an irresistible chemical reaction for middle-grade readers. With easy-to-read language and graphic illustrations on almost every page, this chapter book series is a must for reluctant readers. The Frank Einstein series encourages middle-grade readers to question the way things work and to discover how they, too, can experiment with science. In a starred review, Kirkus Reviews raves, “This buoyant, tongue-in-cheek celebration of the impulse to ‘keep asking questions and finding your own answers’ fires on all cylinders,” while Publishers Weekly says that the series “proves that science can be as fun as it is important and useful.”

  2. Women Who Launched the Computer Age - This book was chosen by the Children’s Book Council as a best STEM book of 2017! Meet the women who programmed the first all-electronic computer and built the technological language kids today can’t live without in this fascinating, nonfiction Level 3 Ready-to-Read, part of a new series of biographies about people “you should meet!” In 1946, six brilliant young women programmed the first all-electronic, programmable computer, the ENIAC, part of a secret World War II project. They learned to program without any programming languages or tools, and by the time they were finished, the ENIAC could run a complicated calculus equation in seconds. But when the ENIAC was presented to the press and public, the women were never introduced or given credit for their work. Learn all about what they did and how their invention still matters today in this story of six amazing young women everyone should meet! A special section at the back of the book includes extras on subjects like history and math, plus interesting trivia facts about how computers have changed over time. With the You Should Meet series, learning about historical figures has never been so much fun!

  3. Frank Einstein and the Space-time Zipper - In the sixth and final book of the New York Times bestselling Frank Einstein series, Frank Einstein (kid-genius, scientist, and inventor) and his best friend, Watson, along with Klink (a self-assembled artificial-intelligence entity) and Klank (a mostly self-assembled and artificial almost intelligence entity), once again find themselves in competition with T. Edison, their classmate and archrival, this time studying the science and mysteries of the universe!

  4. The Wright Brothers: Nose-Diving into History - A hilarious nonfiction look at two of history’s most epic “failures”: the Wright brothers, whose countless crashes and biggest failures led to ultimate success. Although the Wright Brothers are now celebrated as heroes for their groundbreaking contributions to science and engineering as the first men to successfully manage powered, piloted flight, their eventual success was built on the back of a lot of nosedives. It took the self-taught engineers years of work and countless crashes before they managed to remain airborne for a mere twelve seconds! In this hilarious first installment of the Epic Fails series, Ben Thompson and Erik Slader take readers through the the Wright Brothers’ many failed attempts at flight before achieving their groundbreaking success, laying the foundation for aviation as we know it today.

Books About Inventions and Science

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Rosie Revere and the Raucous Riveters
Written & illustrated by Andrea Beaty
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

Rosie Revere is no stranger to flops and fails, kerfuffles and catastrophes. After all, she’s an engineer, and engineering is all about perseverance! But sometimes, Rosie has a really important project to tackle—one that feels much bigger than herself. When Rosie’s beloved Aunt Rose and her pals the Raucous Riveters—a gaggle of fun-loving gals who built airplanes during World War II—need her help, it’s up to Rosie to save the day. Will Rosie be able to invent a contraption to help one of the Riveters paint in the annual mural competition? After one flop . . . then another . . . and another . . . Rosie starts to lose hope. But thanks to some help from her classmates Iggy Peck and Ada Twist, Rosie creates the Paintapolooza! and, along with the Riveters, rediscovers the meaning of Home.

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Ellie, Engineer: In the Spotlight
Written by Jackson Pearce
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Ellie the Engineer is back in a third charming, hilarious, illustrated story filled with creative, STEM-powered fun! “Look out, Junie B. Jones! Ellie the engineer is thinking, making, creating, and showing enthusiasm and brilliance with her creations!” - School Library Connection on Ellie, Engineer Ellie enters a pageant with her best friend Kit, which means lots of glitter, hairspray, and chances to make new friends. After all, Ellie has lots of engineering ideas to help the other girls with their talents, like building a light-up skateboard ramp for Kit! But one contestant, Kit’s not-so-nice pageant rival Melody, makes fun of Ellie’s tool belt and thinks engineering is messy. And when Melody’s rabbit—part of her magic act—goes missing, Ellie knows that she can build a contraption to catch him. But Melody’s comments have made Ellie start to doubt herself—what if a pageant isn’t a place for engineering? With Ellie’s designs and sketches throughout, and her fun guide to electricity and circuits in the back, the continuation of this delightful series will leave young readers laughing and inspired to create.

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Gobbled by Ghorks
Written by Robert Paul Weston & illustrated by Framestore
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

When Jean-Remy receives a singing telegram from his long-lost sister, Eloise Yvette, the Creature Department is once again thrown into an invention frenzy. Rumor has it that the Ghorks have taken Heppleworth’s Food Factory hostage. And worse, they are threatening to make tasty treats of the creatures inside.”

Honorable Mentions
Ellie, Engineer book
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Gastronauts book
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Ada Lace, on the Case book
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Ellie, Engineer: The Next Level book
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  1. Ellie, Engineer - A charming, hilarious illustrated middle grade about a girl who is an engineer—perfect creative, STEM-powered fun for girls who have interests in how things work. “Look out, Junie B. Jones! Ellie the engineer is thinking, making, creating, and showing enthusiasm and brilliance with her creations!” —School Library Connection Ellie is an engineer. With a tool belt strapped over her favorite skirt (who says you can’t wear a dress and have two kinds of screwdrivers handy, just in case?), she invents and builds amazing creations in her backyard workshop. Together with her best friend Kit, Ellie can make anything. As Kit’s birthday nears, Ellie doesn’t know what gift to make until the girls overhear Kit’s mom talking about her present—the dog Kit always wanted! Ellie plans to make an amazing doghouse, but her plans grow so elaborate that she has to enlist help from the neighbor boys and crafty girls, even though the two groups don’t get along. Will Ellie be able to pull off her biggest project yet, all while keeping a secret from Kit? Illustrated with Ellie’s sketches and plans, and including a fun how-to guide to tools, this is a STEM- and friendship-powered story full of fun!

  2. Gastronauts - Sally Tinker, the world’s foremost inventor under the age of twelve, has an extraordinary new challenge. The brain-enhancing nanobots she is testing have been accidentally swallowed by her baby brother Joe. The only way to stop Joe turning into a superbaby and wreaking super havoc is to shrink herself and travel inside Joe’s body on a journey to tackle the problem head-on. What could possibly go wrong? As it turns out, this is only the beginning …

  3. Ada Lace, on the Case - Ada Lace—third-grade scientist and inventor extraordinaire—has discovered something awful: her neighbor’s beloved Yorkie has been dognapped! With the assistance of a quirky neighbor named Nina (who is convinced an alien took the doggie) and her ever-growing collection of gadgets, Ada sets out to find the wrongdoer. As their investigation becomes more and more mysterious, Ada and Nina grow closer, proving that opposites do, in fact, attract.

  4. Ellie, Engineer: The Next Level - Ellie the Engineer is back in another charming, hilarious, illustrated story filled with creative, STEM-powered fun! “Look out, Junie B. Jones! Ellie the engineer is thinking, making, creating, and showing enthusiasm and brilliance with her creations!” -School Library Connection on Ellie, Engineer After Ellie’s first elevator build goes terribly wrong, her parents decide her “punishment” is to assist an elderly neighbor, Mrs. Curran, around the house. Ellie and her friends Kit and Toby are really only supposed to help with little things, but Ellie can’t turn down the opportunity to use her engineering skills here and there where she sees a need—because that’s what engineers do! It’s no fun, though, when Mrs. Curran always gives Toby the credit for all the ingenious projects, and acts like Kit and Ellie were just helping him. . . . Can Ellie come up with another great build to elevate Mrs. Curran’s ideas about this girl engineer? With Ellie’s designs and sketches throughout, and her fun guide to simple machines in the back, the continuation of this delightful series will leave young readers laughing and inspired to create.

Want to see books about science?

Books About Inventions and Friendship

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Camp Hero Double Trouble
Written by Gina Bellisario & illustrated by Jessika von Innerebner
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 7-8

Ellie is excited to go to Camp Hero, where the motto is: Where Super Friendships are Made! But when Ellie’s cabinmates, superhero twins Mona and Leona, give her the cold shoulder, Ellie decides to use her parents’ latest invention to get them to like her. The invention works too well, and the twins start fighting over Ellie! Can Ellie stop their double trouble and find out why they weren’t friendly to her in the first place?

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Remarkable Inventions Of Walter Mortinson
Written & illustrated by Quinn Sosna-Spear
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

In this sweeping and inventive debut novel that’s perfect for fans of Roald Dahl, Neil Gaiman, and Tim Burton, a prodigal inventor flees his home to find his destiny.

In the humdrum town of Moormouth, Walter Mortinson’s unusual inventions cause nothing but trouble. After one of his contraptions throws the town into chaos, Walter’s mother demands he cut the nonsense and join the family mortuary business.

Far off on Flaster Isle, famed inventor Horace Flasterborn plans to take Walter under his wing, just as he did Walter’s genius father decades ago. When a letter arrives by unusual means offering Walter an apprenticeship, it isn’t long before Walter decides to flee Moormouth to meet his destiny.

Walter runs away in the family hearse along with Cordelia, the moody girl next door with one eye and plenty of secrets. Together they journey through a strange landscape of fish-people, giantess miners, and hypnotized honeybees in an adventure that will not only reveal the truth about Walter’s past, but direct his future.

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Snazzy Cat Capers
Written by Deanna Kent & illustrated by Neil Hooson
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

“I want to be Ophelia when I grow up!! And I want Oscar to be my BFF—Best Fishy Friend! Snazzy Cat Capers is fabulous, funny and fin-tastic fun with illustrations that pounce off the page.” —Mo O’Hara, New York Times bestselling author of the My Big Fat Zombie Goldfish series Life is short. Diamonds are fur-ever. Internationally famous cat burglar Ophelia von Hairball V adores jewels—the only thing she loves more is a challenge. She’s never met a safe she couldn’t crack. Now the Furry Feline Burglary Institute (FFBI) offers her the ultimate caper: steal the giant Himalayan diamond and win their top award! There’s a catch! The FFBI sends an enthusiastic inventor to help Ophelia…but this cat works alone, and Oscar Fishgerald Gold smells fishy. Can the smartest, stealthiest, and snazziest of cats learn to work with a fintastic sidekick and prove she’s still the world’s most purr-fect burglar? Adventure, heists, and teamwork abound in this fun, witty middle grade read brimming with cat-tastic black-and-white illustrations. Includes graphic novel-style pages! An Imprint Book “Classy bad girl Ophelia is as funny as she is furry…she’s the pussycat love child of James Bond and Zsa Zsa Gabor, and who can’t love that?” —Kirkus Reviews

Honorable Mentions
Pursued book
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Microsaurs: That's MY Tiny-Saurus Rex book
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Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator book
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Zack and the Turkey Attack! book
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  1. Pursued - Axel Jack and Daisha Tandala are two thirteen-year-old friends running from a billionaire madman who killed their scientist parents and now wants what the kids have—a GeoPort (Geographical Transportation System.) The GeoPort, invented by their parents, has the ability to transport a person to any place on Earth within seconds. Knowing the power they had created, their parents’ dying wish was for the kids to destroy the GeoPort before it lands in the wrong hands. But when the teens are separated by their pursuers, they must make a life or death attempt to find each other and get the GeoPort to a mysterious Indian Temple where the chase becomes more than just a high-tech game of hide-and-seek, but a war for control of everything—money, culture, politics, and power.

  2. Microsaurs: That's MY Tiny-Saurus Rex - Danny and Lin are determined to be the best Microsaur sitters ever! Sure, things got a little out of control with the tiny-raptors and the Professor’s lab might have gotten a bit… destroyed. BUT it’s all going to be absolutely fine. After all, they have a plan!

  3. Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator - From the bestselling author of Matilda and The BFG! Last seen flying through the sky in a giant elevator in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Charlie Bucket’s back for another adventure. When the giant elevator picks up speed, Charlie, Willy Wonka, and the gang are sent hurtling through space and time. Visiting the world’’ first space hotel, battling the dreaded Vermicious Knids, and saving the world are only a few stops along this remarkable, intergalactic joyride.

  4. Zack and the Turkey Attack! - A boy must outsmart a tormenting turkey and solve the mystery surrounding some missing jewelry in this feel-good middle grade novel from the Newbery Award–winning author of the Shiloh series. Zack has a problem. A turkey problem. A TOM turkey to be exact. Every weekend Zack goes to his grandparents’ farm with his father. As soon as he and his dad pull up in the truck, that ol’ Tom turkey’s right there, waiting, ready to peck, peck, peck at Zack’s legs. Now, Zack isn’t usually a scaredy-cat but this is different. The bird is flat out mean, and has clearly got it out for Zack. His best friend Matthew thinks he’s exaggerating, so one weekend Zack brings him along and sure enough the turkey is laying in wait…this time for them both! The boys realize they need something to turn the tables, so they decide to build—in Rube Goldberg style—a giant LOUD contraption to scare the turkey away for good. What the boys don’t count on is the seemingly know-it-all neighbor Josie’s news that there’s a mysterious robber prowling around the neighborhood. Bracelets, necklaces, and coins have gone missing, and the odd thing is that the robber leaves V-shaped footprints…

Books About Inventions and School

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Captain Underpants and the Sensational Saga of Sir Stinks-A-Lot
Written & illustrated by Dav Pilkey
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 7-18

There’s something rotten in the state of Ohio, and it’s smellier than a pile of putrid gym socks! Steer clear — it’s Sir Stinks-A-Lot!

George and Harold, and their doubles, Yesterday George and Yesterday Harold, have a good thing going. Two of them go to school, while the other two hide in the tree house and play video games all day — then they switch! But when their malicious gym teacher, Mr. Meaner, creates a method of mind-control that turns their fellow students into attentive, obedient, perfect children, the future of all humanity will be in their hands!

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Mrs. Master Is a Disaster!
Written by Dan Gutman & illustrated by Jim Paillot
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-10

With more than 11 million books sold, the My Weird School series really gets kids reading!

In this eighth book in the new My Weirdest School series, it’s Grandparents Day at Ella Mentry School! Alexia’s grandmother Mrs. Master makes weird inventions for a living, but A.J. and the gang come up with the weirdest invention of all. And they’re going to make a bazillion dollars from it! Will they succeed? Or will their great big idea be flushed down the drain?

Perfect for reluctant readers and word lovers alike, Dan Gutman’s hugely popular My Weird School chapter book series has something for everyone. Don’t miss the hilarious adventures of A.J. and the gang!

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Mrs. Yonkers Is Bonkers!
Written by Dan Gutman & illustrated by Jim Paillot
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-10

Something weird is going on!

Mrs. Yonkers, the computer teacher, is the nerdiest teacher in the history of the world. She can type with her feet! She buys foam cheeseheads off eBay! She even puts a Webcam on a turtle! Is she trying to take over the planet?

Honorable Mentions
Almost Famous book
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Frankie Sparks and the Class Pet book
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The Secret Notebook book
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Ethan Marcus Stands Up book
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  1. Almost Famous - Ten-year-old Maxine is determined to become a famous inventor so she can take care of her younger brother’s heart condition, and she convinces a troubled classmate to help her.

  2. Frankie Sparks and the Class Pet - Ivy and Bean meets Aliens in my Pocket in this start to a brand-new chapter book series about Frankie Sparks, a third grader who uses her love for science and math to help her solve problems she comes across in her daily life. The best thing EVER is happening in Frankie Sparks’s third grade class: They are getting a class pet! Their teacher, Miss Cupid, tells them they will vote on their pet, but it has to meet some “parameters.” Their pet must: 1. Fit in aquarium. 2. Cost less than $50. 3. Be easily portable. 4. Be able to be left alone for the weekend. Frankie thinks that a rat—just like the rats in her beloved Aunt Gina’s lab—would be the perfect fit. But her best friend, Maya, doesn’t think a rat would be great at all. They are kind of gross and not as cool as a hermit crab, which is Maya’s top choice. Using her special workshop, can Frankie find a way to convince her teacher and her best friend that Team Rat is the way to go?

  3. The Secret Notebook - Riley Green 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 capital. Before vanishing, Riley’s teacher entrusts her with her most prized possession, the lost notebook of Nikola Tesla, legendary inventor and scientist. Now Riley and her friends must protect the notebook from thieves who want to steal the details it holds about a dangerous invention. When Riley discovers another secret, she must decode a mysterious message before it’s too late. Her teacher’s life depends on it.

  4. Ethan Marcus Stands Up - Multiple points of view lead to multiple theories about what really happened after one kid turns a punishment into a protest in this hilarious novel from Michele Weber Hurwitz. Perennial good kid Ethan Marcus has just done the unthinkable: refuse to stay seated during class. He’s not causing a riot; he’s not wandering around; he’s just sick of sitting. But the rules aren’t designed for Ethan, and so he is sent to the principal’s office. When Ethan’s sentence results in a Reflection Day—McNutt Middle School’s answer to detention—his faculty advisor suggests that Ethan channel the energy that caused his “transgression” by entering the school’s Invention Day Competition. Ethan is not exactly Mark Zuckerberg, so he doubts his ability to make anything competition-worthy. That’s the department of his slightly older sister Erin. But as Ethan and his buddy Brian get into the assignment, they realize they might actually have something. Enter Romanov, the resident tech whiz, who refuses to give them tips. But Erin is furious at her formally slacker—now traitor—brother. Meanwhile, Erin’s friend Zoe is steering clear of Erin’s drama after realizing that she may be crushing on Ethan. Then there’s Brian who has bigger things to worry about, and finally loner kid Wesley, who may know more than others realize… Told in the perspectives of multiple students, discover what really happened on the day that one kid decided to take a stand against sitting down.

Want to see books about school?

Books About Inventions and Robots

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House of Robots: Robot Revolution
Written by James Patterson and Chris Grabenstein & illustrated by Juliana Neufeld
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Robots on strike! Sammy’s underappreciated mechanical helpers are causing chaos in book 3 of the bestselling House of Robots series. After a few early glitches in their relationship, Sammy and his “bro-bot” E are now fast friends. In fact, E is such a valued member of the family that the other electronic occupants of the House of Robots are feeling sorely unappreciated. And when Sammy’s inventor mom becomes distracted by a top-secret project, the robots soon begin to fall into disrepair. Cue a robot revolt, with the droids wreaking harmless havoc in the house! Armed with pranks like glue in the shampoo bottles and flying toast missiles, the robots demand to be cared for. It’s up to Sammy and his disabled sister Maddie to keep the peace until his mom reveals her secret project…and why it was worth the wait.

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The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Written by Brian Selznick
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 9-12

Orphan, clock keeper, and thief, Hugo lives in the walls of a busy Paris train station, where his survival depends on secrets and anonymity. But when his world suddenly interlocks with an eccentric, bookish girl and a bitter old man who runs a toy booth in the station, Hugo’s undercover life, and his most precious secret, are put in jeopardy. A cryptic drawing, a treasured notebook, a stolen key, a mechanical man, and a hidden message from Hugo’s dead father form the backbone of this intricate, tender, and spellbinding mystery.

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Frank Einstein and the BrainTurbo (Frank Einstein Series #3)
Written by Jon Scieszka & illustrated by Brian Biggs
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Science fiction meets science fact! Frank Einstein (kid genius, scientist, and inventor) and his best friend, Watson, team up with Klink (a self-assembled artificial intelligence entity) to create the BrainTurbo to power-boost the human body and help their baseball-pitching pal Janegoodall make the team. But when Klank (a mostly self-assembled and artificial almost intelligence entity) goes missing, they must first rescue their robot pal and stop T. Edison—Frank’s classmate and archrival—from stealing their latest invention and using it against them!

Honorable Mentions
Frank Einstein and the BrainTurbo book
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Frank Einstein and the Bio-Action Gizmo book
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Frank Einstein and the EvoBlaster Belt (Frank Einstein Series #4) book
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Frank Einstein and the Electro-Finger book
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  1. Frank Einstein and the BrainTurbo - “Frank Einstein (kid-genius, scientist, and inventor) and his best friend Watson, along with Klink (a self-assembled artificial-intelligence entity), and Klank (a mostly self-assembled and artificial almost intelligence entity), once again find themselves in competition with T. Edison, their classmate and archrival—this time in the quest to unlock the power behind the science of the human body”—

  2. Frank Einstein and the Bio-Action Gizmo - In the fifth book of the New York Times bestselling Frank Einstein series, Frank Einstein (kid genius, scientist, and inventor) and his best friend, Watson, pair up with Klink (a self-assembled artificial-intelligence entity) and Klank (a mostly self-assembled and artificial almost intelligence entity) to compete with T. Edison, their classmate and archrival. This time they’re studying the science and mysteries of our very own home planet: Earth!

  3. Frank Einstein and the EvoBlaster Belt (Frank Einstein Series #4) - In the fourth book in the New York Times bestselling Frank Einstein series, kid genius, scientist, and inventor Frank Einstein, along with his best friend, Watson, team up with robots Klink and Klank to compete with T. Edison. This time, they go on a quest to unlock the power behind the science of life with Frank’s newest invention—the EvoBelt—which allows the user to evolve (and devolve) into other life forms, blasting from one species to another.

  4. Frank Einstein and the Electro-Finger - More clever science experiments, funny jokes, and robot hijinks await readers in book two of the New York Times bestselling Frank Einstein chapter book series from the mad scientist team of Jon Scieszka and Brian Biggs. The perfect combination to engage and entertain readers, the series features real science facts with adventure and humor, making these books ideal for STEM education. This second installment examines the quest to unlock the power behind the science of “energy.” Kid-genius and inventor Frank Einstein loves figuring out how the world works by creating household contraptions that are part science, part imagination, and definitely unusual. In the series opener, an uneventful experiment in his garage-lab, a lightning storm, and a flash of electricity bring Frank’s inventions—the robots Klink and Klank—to life! Not exactly the ideal lab partners, the wisecracking Klink and the overly expressive Klank nonetheless help Frank attempt to perfect his inventions. In the second book in the series, Frank is working on a revamped version of one of Nikola Tesla’s inventions, the “Electro-Finger,” a device that can tap into energy anywhere and allow all of Midville to live off the grid, with free wireless and solar energy. But this puts Frank in direct conflict with Edison’s quest to control all the power and light in Midville, monopolize its energy resources, and get “rich rich rich.” Time is running out, and only Frank, Watson, Klink, and Klank can stop Edison and his sentient ape, Mr. Chimp! Integrating real science facts with wacky humor, a silly cast of characters, and science fiction, this uniquely engaging series is an irresistible chemical reaction for middle-grade readers. With easy-to-read language and graphic illustrations on almost every page, this chapter book series is a must for reluctant readers. The Frank Einstein series encourages middle-grade readers to question the way things work and to discover how they, too, can experiment with science. In a starred review, Kirkus Reviews raves, “This buoyant, tongue-in-cheek celebration of the impulse to ‘keep asking questions and finding your own answers’ fires on all cylinders,” while Publishers Weekly says that the series “proves that science can be as fun as it is important and useful.”

Want to see books about robots?

Books About Inventions and Adventure And Adventurers

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Edison
Written by Torben Kuhlmann
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Award-winning illustrator Torben Kuhlmann’s stunning new book transports readers to new depths where imagination lights the way! A long time ago, one mouse learned to fly, another landed on the moon…what will happen in the next Mouse adventure? From the creator of Lindbergh—The Tale of a Flying Mouse and Armstrong, comes Edison—The Mystery of the Missing Mouse Treasure. When two unlikely friends build a vessel capable of taking them to the bottom of the ocean find a missing treasure—the truth turns out to be far more amazing.

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Microsaurs: Tiny-Raptor Pack Attack
Written by Dustin Hansen
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

Tiny dinosaurs lead to big adventures in this second action-packed Microsaurs chapter book.

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Microsaurs: Follow that Tiny-Dactyl
Written & illustrated by Dustin Hansen
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

Danny and Lin never say no to adventure, so when Danny’s spy camera captures a tiny dinosaur crashing into Lin’s helmet during her skateboarding tryouts they know they have to investigate. But even they weren’t prepared for a secret laboratory filled with amazing inventions (including the Shrink-a-Fier and the Expand-o-matic 2) and astonishing discoveries (Triceratops are NOT fond of the color red!).

Who knew that tracking one tiny pterodactyl would open up such a giant world of adventure with the Microsaurs!?!

Honorable Mentions
Microsaurs: Tiny-Stego Stampede book
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Escaped book
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The Unsinkable Walker Bean book
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Roxie  and  the  Hooligans  at  Buzzard's  Roost book
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  1. Microsaurs: Tiny-Stego Stampede - Get ready for more microsaur mayhem (and a bit of babysitting!) in the fourth installment of Hansen’s action-packed illustrated chapter book series. Illustrations.

  2. Escaped - After destroying the permanent X-Point and thwarting the Doctor’s plans for world domination, Daisha and Axel have a new problem: without a permanent X-Point, Earth’s magnetic poles are flipping, causing massive climactic changes around the world. Now they must find a way to expose a new X-Point to stabilize Earth’s magnetic field, all while evading a doomsday cult that would have the world end. Can Axel and Daisha figure out how to find each other and save the world?

  3. The Unsinkable Walker Bean - In order to save his ailing grandfather from a curse, boy inventor Walker Bean must return an accursed pearl skull to the witches who created it, and face pirates, magical machines, and deadly peril along the way.

  4. Roxie and the Hooligans at Buzzard's Roost - Roxie and the Hooligans are back and this time, Smoky Jo is swiped by a kidnapper who is as blunder-prone as Roxie, Uncle Dangerfoot, and Lord Thistlebottom are clever.

Books About Inventions and Technology

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Crossing on Time
Written by David Macaulay
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-11

David Macaulay, creator of the international bestseller The Way Things Work, brings his signature curiosity and detailing to the story of the steamship in this meticulously researched and stunningly illustrated book. Prior to the 1800s, ships crossing the Atlantic Ocean relied on the wind in their sails to make their journeys. But invention of steam power ushered in a new era of transportation that would change ocean travel forever: the steamship. Award-winning author-illustrator David Macaulay guides readers through the fascinating history that culminated in the building of the most advanced—and last—of these steamships: the SS United States. This book artfully explores the design and construction of the ship and the life of its designer and engineer, William Francis Gibbs. Framed around the author’s own experience steaming across the Atlantic on the very same SS United States, Crossing on Time is a tour de force of the art of explanation and a touching and surprising childhood story.

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Fantastic Failures
Written by Luke Reynolds
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Even the most well-known people have struggled to succeed! Find out what they learned and how they turned their failures into triumphs with this engaging and youthful guide on how to succeed long term. There is a lot of pressure in today’s society to succeed, but failing is a part of learning how to be a successful person. In his teaching career, Luke Reynolds saw the stress and anxiety his students suffered over grades, fitting in, and getting things right the first time. Fantastic Failures helps students learn that their mistakes and failures do not define their whole lives, but help them grow into their potential. Kids will love learning about some of the well-known people who failed before succeeding and will come to understand that failure is a large component of success. With stories from people like J. K. Rowling, Albert Einstein, Rosa Parks, Sonia Sotomayor, Vincent Van Gogh, Julia Child, Steven Spielberg, and Betsy Johnson, each profile proves that the greatest mistakes and flops can turn into something amazing. Intermixed throughout the fun profiles, Reynolds spotlights great inventors and scientists who discovered and created some of the most important medicines, devices, and concepts of all time, including lifesaving vaccines and medicines that were stumbled upon by mistake.

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Billy Sure Kid Entrepreneur
Written by Luke Sharpe & illustrated by Graham Ross
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Twelve-year-old genius inventor and budding businessman Billy Sure hosts an online contest for fellow kid innovators to share their own inventions and the winning submission will be produced by his company, Sure Things, Inc., but with so many fascinating entries, Billy wonders how he will ever choose a winner while helping other kids achieve their dreams at the same time. Simultaneous and eBook.

Honorable Mentions
Frank Einstein and the Antimatter Motor book
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Chilly da Vinci book
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Frankie Sparks and the Talent Show Trick book
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  1. Frank Einstein and the Antimatter Motor - Clever science experiments, funny jokes, and robot hijinks await readers in the first of six books in the New York Times bestselling Frank Einstein chapter book series from the mad scientist team of Jon Scieszka and Brian Biggs. The perfect combination to engage and entertain readers, the series features real science facts with adventure and humor, making these books ideal for STEM education. This first installment examines the science of “matter.” Kid-genius and inventor Frank Einstein loves figuring out how the world works by creating household contraptions that are part science, part imagination, and definitely unusual. In the series opener, an uneventful experiment in his garage-lab, a lightning storm, and a flash of electricity bring Frank’s inventions—the robots Klink and Klank—to life! Not exactly the ideal lab partners, the wisecracking Klink and the overly expressive Klank nonetheless help Frank attempt to perfect his inventions.. . . until Frank’s archnemesis, T. Edison, steals Klink and Klank for his evil doomsday plan!

  2. Chilly da Vinci - While others do “penguin” things, Chilly da Vinci—self-declared inventor penguin, builds machines that don’t work…yet! Chilly ties into the popular “maker” movement with humor and imagination. While others do “penguin” things, Chilly da Vinci—self-declared inventor penguin, builds machines that don’t work…yet!

  3. Frankie Sparks and the Talent Show Trick - Frankie Sparks uses her inventing skills to help her friend overcome stage fright in this second chapter book in the STEM inspired Frankie Sparks, Third-Grade Inventor series. It’s time for the annual school talent show, and Frankie is excited to audition with her magic act! She wants to be just like her idol, Adelaide Herrmann, Queen of Magic. But on the day of the audition, Frankie’s best friend and Magician’s Assistant, Maya, gets a big, scary case of stage fright! How can Maya be Frankie’s helper on stage if she can’t bring herself to speak in front of their audience? It’s up to Frankie Sparks to invent just the perfect thing to help her best friend cope with the spotlight!

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