Battle of the Books


Battle of the Books challenges students grades four through six to become familiar with literature. Comprehension and retention are put to the test in a Jeopardy-style battle. Area schools create their own teams and gather at the library to compete in a five week battle on questions derived from twenty selected books. Battle books are chosen by Eisenhower librarians, Battle Coaches, and participating students.

If you are a student in grade four through six and would like to participate in Battle of the Books, please see your school’s Battle Coach to sign up. Need help contacting your coach? Call Kids World at 708-867-2298.

The 2024-2025 Battle Schedule

  • Practice Battle: To be announced later
  • Battle 1: To be announced later
  • Battle 2: To be announced later
  • Battle 3: To be announced later
  • Battle 4: To be announced later
  • Battle 5: To be announced later
  • Battle of the Books Award Ceremony: To be announced later

The above dates are scheduled to be held in-person at Eisenhower Public Library District. Your school coach may have additional times for team practices. Please see your coach for information on those.

Watch this page or the Kids World Blog for updated notices and posts regarding the Battle season.

Reading Requirements

Each member of the team must read the minimum number of books based on their grade level to participate in Battle. There are 20 books on the list, so team members are encouraged to read more than the minimum.

  • 4th Grade = six books minimum
  • 5th Grade = seven books minimum
  • 6th Grade = eight books minimum

2024-2025 Books


Returning Titles

Best Wishes book cover

Best Wishes by Sarah Mlynowski
After her best friend ditches her, fifth-grader Becca, feeling devastated and alone, yearns for people to like her, so when a magical bracelet grants her wish to have loads of friends, she soon discovers having a dream come true is not as simple as it seems.

Hoops book cover

Hoops by Matt Tavares
A work of fiction inspired by a true story. It is 1975 in Indiana, and the Wilkins Regional High School girls’ basketball team is in their rookie season. Despite being undefeated, they practice at night in the elementary school and play to empty bleachers. Unlike the boys’ team, the Lady Bears have no buses to deliver them to away games and no uniforms, much less a laundry service. They make their own uniforms out of T-shirts and electrical tape. And with help from a committed female coach, they push through to improbable victory after improbable victory. Illustrated in full color, this story about the ongoing battle of women striving for equality in sports rings with honesty, bravery, and heart. Graphic Novel.

book cover for High Score

High Score by Destiny Howell
Oceans 11 goes to the arcade in this wildly entertaining heist adventure. We do this my way. No one gets hurt. And if I call it off, it’s off. Got it? My name’s Darius James–but everyone calls me DJ. At my old school, I was the go-to guy for all kinds of tricky problems that needed creative solutions. But at my new school, Ella Fitzgerald Middle, I’m just trying to blend in. Well, I was, anyway, until my best friend, Conor, got himself transferred to the Fitz too. Now Conor owes 100,000 arcade tickets to the biggest bully around–and he only has two weeks to make it happen. Impossible? Not with my head in the game.

book cover for The Dragonet Prophecy

The Dragonet Prophecy by Tui T. Sutherland
The seven dragon tribes have been at war for generations, locked in an endless battle over an ancient, lost treasure. A secret movement called the Talons of Peace is determined to bring an end to the fighting, with the help of a prophecy — a foretelling that calls for great sacrifice. Five dragonets are collected to fulfill the prophecy, raised in a hidden cave and enlisted, against their will, to end the terrible war. But not every dragonet wants a destiny. And when the select five escape their underground captors to look for their original homes, what has been unleashed on the dragon world may be far more than the revolutionary planners intended… The original chapter book version.

Kids Choice

Book cover for Paws #1: Gabby Gets it Together

Gabby Gets It Together by Nathan Fairbairn
Meet best friends Gabby Jordan, Priya Gupta, and Mindy Kim. They’re different in just about every way — personalities, hobbies, family, and more — but they have a few important things in common: they’re all in the same class, they absolutely love animals, and for reasons that are as varied as the trio themselves none of them can actually have any pets. Unable to resist the adorable temptation any longer, the girls decide to come up with a way to finally get their hands on some furry friends. And, as luck would have it, it seems like their neighborhood is in need of some after-school dog-walkers. So, just like that, PAWS is born! But it turns out that running a business is harder than it looks, especially with three co-owners who are such different people. The girls soon argue about everything, from how to prioritize their commitments to the best way to keep their doggy clients happy. And when their fighting ultimately leads to a doggo crisis, will it tear their business and friendship apart or will they be able to get it together to save the day? Graphic Novel.

Librarian and Coach’s Choices

book cover for Lifeboat 12

Lifeboat 12 by Susan Hood
In 1940, a group of British children, their escorts, and some sailors struggle to survive in a lifeboat when the ship taking them to safety in Canada is torpedoed.

book cover for Mission Unstoppable by Gutman

Mission Unstoppable by Dan Gutman
On a cross-country vacation with their parents, twins Coke and Pepsi, soon to be thirteen, fend off strange assassins as they try to come to terms with their being part of a top-secret government organization known as The Genius Files.

book cover for Wild Ride: My Journey from Cancer Kid to Astronaut by Hayley Arceneaux

Wild Ride : My Journey from Cancer Kid to Astronaut by Hayley Arceneaux
In this young person’s adaptation of her memoir, Arceneaux shares the details of her wild ride with never-before-told stories. Arceneaux not only tells readers what it was like to go to space—from training in a fighter jet to lifting off in a Dragon capsule—but she also offers stories from her childhood: things that she faced at the hospital when going through cancer treatment, what she had to overcome when she went back to school, and the courage it took to dream big dreams for her teenage and adult years. Non-fiction.

Book cover for Ferris by Kate DiCamillo

Ferris by Kate DiCamillo
It was the summer before Emma Phineas Wilkey (who everyone called Ferris) went into the fifth grade. It was the summer that the ghost appeared to Charisse, the summer that Ferris’s sister, Pinky Wilkey, devoted herself to becoming an outlaw, and the summer that Uncle Ted left Aunt Shirley and moved into the Wilkey basement to paint a history of the world. When a ghost shows up at the threshold to Ferris’s grandmother Charisse’s room, Ferris worries that she’s there to take Charisse to the Great Beyond. But Charisse says that the ghost has something else in mind–something unpredictable, a task that’s impractical and illuminating. But how can Ferris focus on completing an assignment for a ghost when her little sister is terrorizing the town, her uncle keeps sending her to spy on her aunt, and the house has been invaded by raccoons?

Book cover for Something Like Home by Arango

Something Like Home by Andrea Beatriz Arango
Laura Rodríguez Colón has a plan: no matter what the grown-ups say, she will live with her parents again. Can you blame her? It’s tough to make friends as the new kid at school. And while staying at her aunt’s house is okay, it just isn’t the same as being in her own space. So when Laura finds a puppy, it seems like fate. If she can train the puppy to become a therapy dog, then maybe she’ll be allowed to visit her parents. Maybe the dog will help them get better and things will finally go back to the way they should be. After all, how do you explain to others that you’re technically a foster kid, even though you live with your aunt? And most importantly . . . how do you explain that you’re not where you belong, and you just want to go home?

Book cover for Wildfire by Bard

Wildfire by Breena Bard
After her home burns down, Julianna moves to a new town to start over but learns that the boy who started the fire goes to her new school. Graphic Novel.

Book cover for "A Royal Conundrum" Misfits book 1

A Royal Conundrum by Lisa Yee
Olive Cobin Zang has . . . issues. And they mostly aren’t her fault. (No, really!) So, imagine her doubts when she’s suddenly dropped off at the strangest boarding school ever: a former castle turned prison that’s now a “reforming arts school”! But nothing could’ve prepared Olive for RASCH (not “rash”). There, she’s lumped with a team of other kids who never quite fit in, and discovers that the academy isn’t what it seems—and neither is she. In fact, RASCH is a cover for an elite group of misfits who fight crime, but it turns out that RASCH is in danger of closing, unless Olive’s class can stop the heist of the century. And as Olive falls in love with this wacky school, she realizes it’s up to her new team to save the only home that’s ever welcomed them.

Book cover for: Mona Lisa Vanishes by Day

The Mona Lisa Vanishes by Nicholas Day
On a hot August day in Paris, just over a century ago, a desperate guard burst into the office of the director of the Louvre and shouted, “La Joconde, c’est partie! The Mona Lisa, she’s gone!”
No one knew who was behind the heist. Was it an international gang of thieves? Was it an art-hungry American millionaire? Was it the young Spanish painter Pablo Picasso, who was about to remake the very art of painting?

Travel back to an extraordinary period of revolutionary change: turn-of-the-century Paris. Walk its backstreets. Meet the infamous thieves—and detectives—of the era. And then slip back further in time and follow Leonardo da Vinci, painter of the Mona Lisa, through his dazzling, wondrously weird life. Discover the secret at the heart of the Mona Lisa—the most famous painting in the world should never have existed at all. Non-fiction.

Book cover for: The Eyes & the Impossible by Eggers

The Eyes & the Impossible by Dave Eggers
Johannes, a free dog, lives in an urban park by the sea. His job is to be the Eyes—to see everything that happens within the park and report back to the park’s elders, three ancient Bison. His friends—a seagull, a raccoon, a squirrel, and a pelican—work with him as the Assistant Eyes, observing the humans and other animals who share the park and making sure the Equilibrium is in balance. 

But changes are afoot. More humans, including Trouble Travelers, arrive in the park. A new building, containing mysterious and hypnotic rectangles, goes up. And then there are the goats—an actual boatload of goats—who appear, along with a shocking revelation that changes Johannes’s view of the world.

Book cover for Mr. Wolf's Class by Steinke

Mr. Wolf’s Class by Aron Nels Steinke
Mr. Wolf has just started teaching at Hazelwood Elementary. He wants the first day of school to go well, but he’s got his hands full with his new class. Some of his students include: Margot, who is new in town and is trying to make friends. Sampson, who brought something special to school for show-and-tell. Aziza, who just wants everyone to be quiet and do their work. And Penny, who is VERY sleepy because she has a new baby brother at home, goes missing! This delightful new series captures the everyday — and unexpected — ups and downs of a fourth-grade classroom.

Book cover for "Haru, Zombie Dog" by Ellen oh

Haru, Zombie Dog Hero by Ellen Oh
Eleven-year-old Luke and his dog, Haru, are the best of friends. Totally inseparable. But when their nasty landlord falsely accuses Haru of biting her, Haru is kidnapped! As Luke and his friends go on a serious mission to find and bring Haru home again, they discover mysterious experiments happening at the old laboratory at Painted Lake, owned by an evil multibillionaire named Mr. Thomas Sinclair. And Luke and his friends soon fear that Sinclair’s scientists could be doing illegal testing that may endanger Haru and their whole town. As more strange clues emerge, the boys realize their world is changing fast, and soon Painted Lake is plagued by zombie attacks. But the love between Luke and Haru endures, ultimately helping to save them all.

Book cover for "Dread Detention" by Killick

Dread Detention by Jennifer Killick
When classmates Hallie, Angelo, Gustav and Naira are forced to come to school on a Saturday, they think things can’t get much worse. But they’re wrong. Things are about to get seriously scary.

What has dragged their teacher underground? Why do the creepy caretakers keep humming the tune to “Itsy Bitsy Spider”? And what horrors lurk in the shadows, getting stronger and meaner every minute . . .? Cut off from help and in danger each time they touch the ground, the gang’s only hope is to work together. But it’s no coincidence that they’re all there on detention. Someone has been watching and plotting and is out for revenge . . .

Book cover for "Dark is Rising" by Susan Cooper

The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper
On the Midwinter Day that is his eleventh birthday, Will Stanton discovers a special gift– that he is the last of the Old Ones, immortals dedicated to keeping the world from domination by the forces of evil, the Dark. At once, he is plunged into a quest for the six magical Signs that will one day aid the Old Ones in the final battle between the Dark and the Light. And for the twelve days of Christmas, while the Dark is rising, life for Will is full of wonder, terror, and delight.

Book cover for "Ben Yokoyama and the Cookie of Doom" by Swanson

Ben Yokoyama and the Cookie of Doom by Matthew Swanson
Meet Ben, a literal-minded kid with a big heart and an even bigger sweet-tooth, who cracks open a fortune cookie and discovers that TODAY might be his last day on Earth! “Live each day as if it were your last.

When Ben reads his fortune-cookie fortune, he’s alarmed and inspired. Immediately, he begins drafting a bucket list of unfinished tasks and lifelong dreams (finish his 1000-piece model of the Taj Mahal, eat an entire cake, etc….). As Ben marches himself in and out of trouble, takes useful risks, and helps both his parents to see the bigger picture, readers discover how something that seems scary can instead be empowering–leading to friendships that might never have been made, neighbors that might never have been known, and apple pies that might otherwise never have been baked.

Book cover for "How to Win a Slime War" by Respicio

How to Win a Slime War by Mae Respicio
Alex Manalo and his dad have just moved back to Sacramento to revive their extended family’s struggling Filipino market. While Alex likes helping at the store, his true passion is making slime! He comes up with his own recipes, playing with ingredients, colors, and textures that make his slime truly special. Encouraged by a new friend at school, Alex begins to sell his creations, leading to a sell-off battle with a girl who previously had a slime-opoly. Winner gets bragging rights and the right to be the only slime game in town.

But Alex’s dad thinks Alex should be focused more on “traditional” boy pastimes and less on slime. As the new soccer coach, Dad wants Alex to join the team.

Alex is battling on multiple fronts—with his new friends at school and with his dad at home. It will be a sticky race to the finish to see who oozes out on top.