27 Books Every '90s Kid Read At Least Once

by Melissa Ragsdale

One of the best parts of being a '90s kid is that we grew up with some rad books. Seriously, reading was cool. Remember those magic days of going to your school's Scholastic book fair or your library and feeling like anything was possible? Or afternoons curled up on your bean bag, devouring your latest find? Or rushing through your math schoolwork so that you could have free reading time? (Aah, if only free reading time were a thing at adult jobs!)

If you were a girl growing up the '90s and '00s, there were definitely some books that we all got hooked on, from the chapter book series that we fell hard for to the books that we read over and over again. There were some books that were practically fashionable; if you weren't reading them you were missing out.

So, if you're a '90s girl like me, these books will take you back to the good ol' days of wazzup, ring pops. and (of course) some mad good reading. On this list, you're sure to find some of your favorite reads, and hopefully a few gems that you nearly forgot about. Even though we can't actually go back to the '90s, these books will certainly take you for a ride down memory lane.


'Ella Enchanted' by Gail Carson Levine

This fairytale swept us all up in its adventure and magic (so did the movie with Anne Hathaway and Hugh Dancy.)

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The Nancy Drew Series by Caroline B. Cooney

Even though the Nancy Drew books have been around for ages, every 90s girl had her own Nancy Drew phase.

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The Babysitters Club by Ann M. Martin

We all wanted to be like the cool girls of The Babysitters Club. And of course, everyone has their favorite character.

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A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket

Unfortunately, I was hooked on these traumatizing tales of woe and despair.

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Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling


Junie B. Jones series by Barbara Park

Every mishap Junie B. gets herself into was more entertaining the one before it. Plus, the girl had some serious sass.

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'Esperanza Rising' by Pam Muñoz Ryan

This stunning book twisted your heart into all sorts of directions.

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'The Goose Girl' by Shannon Hale

You couldn't unglue me from this book for anything. Every page was like a new discovery.

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'Twilight' by Stephanie Meyer

Love it or hate it (or loved it at the time and hate it now), you definitely read Twilight growing up.

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'Are You There, God? It's Me, Margaret' by Judy Blume

Really, this list could be entirely Judy Blume books. But this classic was essential reading for every girl born in the '90s.

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'A Great and Terrible Beauty' by Libba Bray

This book about boarding school and witchcraft got passed around my friend group constantly.

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'The Giver' by Lois Lowry


'Fever 1793' by Laurie Halse Anderson

Remember reading this book and immediately becoming convinced that you had the Yellow Fever? Or was that just me?

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'Holes' by Louis Sachar

I'm still constantly on the lookout for yellow-spotted lizards.

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The American Girl series by Valerie Tripp

We all had our favorite American Girl, and we tore through their stories. Felicity, Molly, Josefina, Kit, Addy, Kaya, Kirsten, Samantha... they were like our pen pals from a different era.

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'Matilda' by Roald Dahl

I'm not the only one who related to Matilda on a fundamental level, right?

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'Where the Sidewalk Ends' by Shel Silverstein

I read these poems over and over and over again, and they still make me smile today.

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The Animorphs series by K.A. Applegate

Not only were these covers the coolest thing in your school's library, but the intergalactic battle of the Animorphs was some seriously good reading. We all know which morphs we'd want if we could change into animals.

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'Artemis Fowl' by Eoin Colfer

An advanced society of fairies living underground get mixed up with a rich boy genius? SO GOOD. This book (and its sequels) were everything a reader could ever want.

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'A Wrinkle in Time' by Madeline L'engle

This seriously imaginative book is making its way to the big screen soon, and I couldn't be more excited.

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'From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler' by E.L.Konigsburg

I would love to get locked in my favorite museum overnight.

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'First Test' by Tamora Pierce

After reading my first Tamora Pierce book, I launched a hardcore campaign to become a knight of the realm.

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'Bridge to Terabithia' by Katherine Paterson

Friendship! Magic! Imagination! A horribly sad ending! This book really had it all.

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'The Westing Game' by Ellen Raskin

I stayed up way, way past my bedtime trying to figure out this mystery.

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'Because of Winn-Dixie' by Kate DiCamillo

This tear-jerker of a book pulled on every one of my heartstrings. I'm getting misty-eyed just thinking about it!

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'Stargirl' by Jerry Spinelli

Who wants to be "normal" anyway?

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'Poppy' by Avi

Avi was quintessential for every '90s reader. Poppy the field mouse and all of her forest friends felt like my best friends.

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