Are you looking for wholesome reading that will teach and entertain your kids? Here are some treasures I’ve discovered.

Underground Railroad Fiction by Michelle Isenhoff

The Divided Decade series: focuses on how Michigan families helped slaves on the Underground Railroad and supported the Civil War. For ages ten and up.

Book one: The Candle Star

Twelve-year-old southern belle, Emily, is sent to live with her uncle in Detroit where, much to her dismay, she must work in her uncle’s hotel alongside free slaves. After earning his trust, she stumbles upon his secret. She participates in events which will change her world forever.

Book Two: Broken Ladders

Hannah tries to save the family farm when her father and brother go off to fight in the Civil War.

Book Three: Beneath the Slashings

Grace wants a normal life after the Civil War, but her life is uprooted when her father must seek work in a Michigan lumber camp.

Underground Railroad Fiction by Alison Treat

One Traveler

Young southerner, Sidney, goes north looking for answers, but his entire belief system is challenged when he stays with his aunt and uncle. Set in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania on the eve of the Civil War, this book follows a family who helps slaves on the Underground Railroad. YA

Great Reads by Joyce Magnin

My writing mentor, author Joyce Magnin, writes middle grade novels for kids 9-12. More are on the way. Her quirky style will appeal to adults as well as kids.

Carrying Mason

Thirteen-year-old Luna knows how to skin a rabbit, where to pick wildflowers, and how to gut a fish. She takes care of her best friend’s developmentally disabled mother when that best friend dies. Now she has to learn how to say goodbye.


More than frosting filled those cakes…When Wilma Sue arrives at her new foster home, strange things happen. Was that a goldfish swimming in the lemonade? Did butterflies come out of a cake? As Wilma Sue bakes and delivers cakes she wonders if former missionaries, Ruth and Naomi, really want her in their home—though they keep insisting.

Great Historical Fiction by Clara Gillow Clark 

I found Clara’s well-written books quite by accident in our public library. They chronicle life in the nineteenth century from a child’s perspective. To my delight, they are set in northeastern Pennsylvania, where I live.

Hill Hawk Hattie

Follow Hattie as she disguises herself as a boy and learns to steer a log raft down the Delaware River to Philadelphia where her father will sell the timber.

Willie and the Rattlesnake King

Willie runs away from home to find adventure in a traveling medicine show and finds more than he bargained for.

Looking for resources on the Underground Railroad? Try here:

African American in Front of a Log Cabin

Social Studies for Kids: The Underground Railroad Underground Railroad

Freedom Center: National Underground Railroad Freedom Center

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