Kids in early elementary school typically read beginning chapter/easy reader books and are drawn to stories about heroes who are on a quest and are fighting monsters and defeating evil.
"The Princess in Black" series by Shannon Hale and Dean Hale falls under this category, Azevedo said.
“It is a book about a young princess who wears pink dresses and has tea with the duchess, but also secretly puts on a black costume and fights monsters to keep the kingdom safe,” he said. “A little boy comes onto her secret and the story is just fun.”
"Dragon Breath" by Ursula Vernon is an early chapter book younger elementary kids will enjoy. “It is about a young dragon going to dragon school that has elements of the Harry Potter structure,” said Azevedo said, adding the book’s illustrations make the story even more interesting for kids.
"The Spiderwick Chronicles" books by Tony DiTerlizzi and Holly Black are fantasy/adventure read-a-likes for Harry Potter readers. “This is a great example of low fantasy, which is a fantasy place that takes place in the real world — just like Harry Potter— but then there’s this special secret world,” Azevedo said.
Another good fantasy pick for younger readers are books by Aaron Becker. There are three books in Becker’s series, starting with "Journey."
“It’s like a portal fantasy where a little girl draws a door on the wall and walks through it to find another world,” Diaz said. “It is a very much like in Harry Potter where this new world is almost parallel to our world but there are different rules and a hint of magic.”