Ramona Quimby Read Alikes

There is a reason the Ramona Quimby series by Beverly Clearly has withstood the test of time. Ramona is such a likable and relatable character it is almost impossible not to be charmed by her. Beverly Clearly masterfully gets inside the mind of a child and expertly conveys their experiences, imaginative ponderings, inquisitive questions in such an amusing and entertaining way.

These read alikes featured here contain characters similar to Ramona in that they are brave, curious, creative, and aren’t afraid to speak their minds. You won’t want to miss these fabulous coming-of-age stories featuring smart, strong protagonists navigating the ins and outs of elementary school.


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Dory Fantasmagory (series) by Abby Hanlon

As an exuberant little sister with a wild imagination, Dory is often ignored by her two older siblings. The lively text and illustrations follow Dory through her many comical antics attempting to get the attention of her family. 

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Marty McGuire (series) by Kate Messner, illustrated by Brian Floca

Third grade Marty McGuire is doing her best to navigate third grade, but it’s proving difficult when her ex-best friend has become closer friends with the bossy Veronica Grace and, worst of all, she has been cast as the princess in their class play The Princess and the Frog. Marty would much rather play with frogs than having to be a princess any day. It’s hard not to love the spunky animal-obsessed Marty in this amusing series.

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Ruby and the Booker Boys (series) by Derrick Barnes

Brimming with confidence, Ruby Marigold Booker may be the little sister of three older brothers, but she is prepared to stand out as the superstar she is at her new school. It is so much fun to read about the fabulous Ruby along with her loving family, friends, and pet iguana named Lady Love.

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Clementine (series) by Sara Pennypacker, illustrated by Marla Frazee

Clementine is a third grader who means well, but just can’t seem to stay out of trouble. After a week of visiting the principal almost daily, Clementine fears her parents will be ready to give her away. Full of humor and heart, kids won’t be able to resist the energetic Clementine!  

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Jasmine Toguchi, Mochi Queen (series) by Debbi Michiko Florence; illustrated by Elizabet Vuković

It’s the Lunar New Year and Jasmine yearns to make the traditional Japanese mochi dessert like her big sister. Many younger siblings will relate to Jasmine’s desire to feel special and have the opportunity to do something before her older sister. There is a lot to like about the spunky Jasmine and this heartwarming story celebrating family and culture. 

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Lola Levine is Not Mean (series) by Monica Brown; illustrated by Angela Dominguez

Lola Levine is a bicultural second-grader who loves playing soccer, writing in her diary, and spending time with her family and best friend, Josh. When she accidentally hurts another classmate during a soccer game, she is teased for being mean. Luckily, Lola’s supportive family helps her through this tough time. With well-developed characters and a realistic school scenario, many children will be attracted to this engaging series. 

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Beatrice Zinker Upside Down Thinker(series) by Shelley Johannes

Imaginative Beatrice Zinker may be a bit quirky, like hanging upside down from trees to get inspiration for good ideas, but she is also kind and a good friend. This heartfelt story follows her as she works out her changing friendships while experiencing third grade.  

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Meet Yasmin! (series) by Saadia Faruqi, illustrated by Hatem Aly

Yasmin is an exuberant, creative second-grader learning how to navigate life. Her adventures are captured in short chapters filled with colorful illustrations making this early chapter book accessible for new readers. Pakistani and Muslim cultural details are effortlessly woven into the stories with a glossary and additional facts about Pakistan located in the backmatter.

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Ruby Lu Brave and True (series) by Lenore Look

This comical book stars the high-spirited Ruby Lu who is learning to become a magician, adapting to life with a new baby brother, and struggling through Chinese school on Saturdays. Ruby Lu’s hysterical hijinks are so much fun to read about.  

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Jo Jo Makoons and the Used to Be Friend (series) by Dawn Quigley, illustrated by Tara Audibert

Full of humor and heart, this series stars the endearing Jo Jo, a seven-year-old girl growing up in a Native American Ojibwe reservation. As a first grader, Jo Jo is trying to figure out the ins out and of school and friendships.

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Ways to Make Sunshine (series) by Renée Watson

This heartfelt story stars Ryan Hart, a no-nonsense fourth grader doing her best to look on the bright side even when things get tough in her family life and in school.

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