I am a book snob
Okay, now we've got that out of the way...
As Abigail and Anna were entering the second and third grades, I began to find it very difficult to find good reading books for them. They were in this really weird place where the books that were at their age/grade level were just lame - cartoon characters with bright colors that were more pictures than plot, not to mention the questionable attitudes of the characters. On the flip side, the books that I wanted them to get into were a little too long and thus daunting, with enough difficult words that made it more work than pleasure.
Wandering through Barnes & Noble's kids' section, I had the impression that if you could pick up a pencil and string a sentence together, you could get a book deal. Not encouraging. So, with the help of Veritas Press and Sonlight Curriculum, I have found a selection of great books for my kids! Here are some:
Some we've read in previous years, some we are reading this year. All are a reasonable length, nothing really questionable in terms of attitudes or situations, all engaging stories that are well written.
It's hardly an exhaustive list, though - I'm sure I'm missing some gems. Please chip in with something I've forgotten/never heard of!