Kids love superheroes, but I’ve found that the superhero plot is lacking in books that aren’t comics or graphic novels. I’ve only read a handful of middle grade books about superheroes, so I did a deep dive to see what’s available for readers who like stories like these. The result is this list. I’ve rounded up some of the best titles, including one about a boy with a photographic memory and a graphic novel about a girl training to be a supervillain. These books are adventurous, funny, and fast-paced — kids will love them!
The Supervillain’s Guide to Being a Fat Kid follows new sixth grader, Max. Max is fat and on his first day of school becomes a target for school bully and eighth-grader Johnny “Pro.” Max’s mom is a single mother and his only friend Luca is poor and wears worn hand-me-downs. When Max gets fed up with being bullied, he decides to write to imprisoned supervillain, Master Plan for advice and help. Master Plan comes up with a step-by-step guide to stop Max from being bullied and elevate his social status — maybe even helping him get closer to the girl he likes. But when Max’s fortune starts to change, it threatens his friendship with Luca. Worse still, he realizes that supervillains rarely offer help without needing something in exchange.
The Unforgettable Logan Foster #1 is a fantasy middle grade debut by author Shawn Peters. Logan is a foster kid at a boys’ foster home. He’s on the autism spectrum, has a photographic memory, and isn’t the best at picking up on social cues. But just when Logan is sure that he’ll never be adopted, a new couple Margie and Gil show up. After a rocky start, Logan is settling in with his new foster parents when he starts noticing some weird things. Gil never seems to eat and are Margie’s tears silver? He’s only processing the fact that his new parents might be superheroes when they get kidnapped by a supervillain and it’s up to Logan to save them.