Middle School to Young Adult Books

Theme: Books That Ask Questions

Ask Me No Questions - (ISBN: 978-1416949206)

by Marina Budhos

After 9/11, a Bangladeshi family’s hopes to become legal in the U.S. become shaky. Their visas have expired, and their teachers continue educating them without asking questions about their status and the reason for their father’s recent arrest. What does the future hold for them? What can they do to help themselves?

The 10 PM Question - (ISBN: 978-0763649395)

by Kate De Goldi

Frankie’s ongoing anxiety leads him to a constant stream of self-questions. Sydney, a recent new student at his school also asks questions about everything. Frankie’s attraction to her leads to more anxiety on his part, and eventually, more growing up. Will his interest in the young woman lead to a split between Frankie and his best friend Gigs? What IS the 10 p.m. question?

The Mozart Question - (ISBN: 978-0763635527)

by Michael Morpurgo

Paolo’s father lived through a Nazi concentration camp. Although he is a talented musician, his father will never play Mozart on his fine violin. When the son Paolo finally gets to see his father’s violin after being sworn to secrecy by his mother, he just has more questions. Why won’t his father play Mozart? What really happened in the concentration camp? Of course his father’s ultimate question is why did he survive when others didn’t?

The Real Question - (ISBN: 978-1561455010)

by Adrian Fogelin

Fisher feels pressure from his father and himself to do well on the upcoming SAT’s. But he also finds the idea of taking a road trip with a more relaxed friend very attractive. Why can’t he also have an adventure, he asks himself. The trip turns into a telling experience, resulting in even more questions. Fisher comes to recognize that other people also have challenges, and that he can go beyond his own concerns to help them. Have you ever been tempted or even compelled to try to be perfect?

Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up? - (ISBN: 978-0802797278)

by Mark Kneece

This graphic novel version of a favorite Twilight Zone episode brings to life the famed TV series in a more modern and appealing format. After a bus crash, the passengers feel uneasy about a nearby UFO and fear that someone among the survivors is an alien from another planet. What questions might they ask to find out who is not whom he appears?

Are You Experienced? - (ISBN: 978-1250025647)

by Jordan Sonnenblick

No Laughter Here - (ISBN: 978-1439570272)

by Rita Williams-Garcia

The Girl from Nowhere - (ISBN: 9781926778471 )

by Jim Zubkavich

The Questions Within - (ISBN: 9781616517601)

by Teresa Schaeffer

The Rag and Bone Shop - (ISBN: 978-0440229711)

by Robert Cormier

Who Is Jesse Flood? - (ISBN: 9781582347769)

by Malachy Doyle

Wise Guy: The Life and Philosophy of Socrates - (ISBN: 978-0374312497)

by M.D. Usher

Activities for this Theme

Prepare a list of questions you might ask family members so that you can create an ongoing conversation for all members to participate in - no matter where they are located. Try using Synth to record and listen to your discussions. 

Do more research if you enjoyed Wise Guy: The Life and Philosophy of Socrates. Find out what kinds of questions Socrates thought were helpful. Incorporate some into your dealings with friends, teachers, and family.