One way to get struggling readers to begin to read for pleasure is to find books at their interest range AND readability level.  Publishers call these books hi-lo books (high interest- low readability).  I own all of the following book series and you are welcome to borrow them for your students.


Orca Currents: These short, well-constructed books written by best-selling, award-winning authors are a gold mine for reluctant readers in middle school.

Orca Soundings: Soundings use simple vocabulary and short sentences combined with lots of authentic dialogue and engrossing subject matter, making them ideal for high-interest, low-reading-level collections. The authors are not afraid of controversial language or material, which is in large part the secret of the series’ appeal.

Orca Young Readers: Young readers will learn about team work, cooperation, competition, success and failure. Themes include multiculturalism, family dynamics, sports and adventure.

Tom and Ricky Mystery series, sets 1 & 2: We’ve selected the best stories from this classic series and repackaged them into new sets. Each story has been slightly revised to reflect current times, and the content has been leveled to an even more consistent 1st grade reading level.

Time Soldiers series: The Time Soldiers books are movie adventures without the screen. Easy-to-read text make science fiction appealing to audiences of all ages. With resourcefulness and teamwork, the Time Soldiers elude danger while introducing readers to new vocabulary and historical events.

Hank Zipzer: The World’s Greatest Underachiever series: Inspired by the true life experiences of Henry Winkler, this winning series about the world’s greatest underachiever is funny, touching, and deals with learning differences in a gentle and humorous manner.

Backpack Novels: Our Backpack Novels are especially designed for your under-performing teens. They’re fast and easy reads, featuring real-life dilemmas and challenges – all touched with the kind of humor adolescents appreciate!

Copper Canyon series: Sara and Amber are in middle school and are best friends. They also share a love of horses, but problems in their small town of Copper Canyon test their sense of right and wrong and could hurt their friendship.

Tales of Danger series: Young people find their limits–and hidden strengths–when they are faced with dangerous situations in the outdoors.

Tales of Horror series: Salem witches, werewolves, ghostly soldiers, and other members of the “undead” populate these five tales of horror geared for middle and high school readers

Hi-Lo Fiction Books