25 Funny Chapter Books for Kids ages 8 to 12 that love humor and laughter! These funny books also make great read alouds and audiobooks for the whole family.
Funny Chapter Books are my favorite! I love when I hear my kids laughing out loud and I turn to see them fully engaged with a book. I also love reading funny books aloud together because the shared laughter creates the best memories. I especially appreciate the magic ability that funny chapter books have to coax even the most reluctant of readers into an enjoyable book experience.
These comedic books are great to hand off to a kid who loves to read on their own, but they're also wonderful to read aloud or listen to together on audio - it's so much fun to laugh together!
The books on this list don't rely on potty-humor or rude jokes to evoke laughter. Rather, clever writing, witty dialogue, situational humor, and silliness provide a perfect comedic effect in these funny chapter books for kids. Get ready to laugh out loud!
If you're looking for Funny Books for younger kids, check out our favorite Funny Picture Books for Kids.
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Funny Chapter Books for Kids
The Adventures of Nanny Piggins (Nanny Piggins, 1)
By R.A. Spratt
When I asked my kids to think of funny books they all, without hesitating, said "Nanny Piggins!" This series about a single father who hires a pig to be his children's nanny is absolutely hilarious and I laugh out loud just as often as the kids. I can't recommend this series highly enough!
Float (Float, 1)
By Laura Martin
This book, and its sequel Vanishing Act, are so much fun and favorites of ours! The series follows a group of kids sent to a government mandated summer camp for kids with RISK (Reoccurring Incidents of the Strange Kind) factors. In the first book, the main character's RISK factor causes him to float uncontrollably (made more difficult by the fact that he's also afraid of heights). In the second book, the main character has uncontrollable invisibility issues.
The books are funny and heartwarming and full of summer camp hijinks that will have your kids howling with laughter.
By Gordon Korman
I read this book (and its sequel Supergifted) after my daughter read it and insisted it was the funniest book she'd ever read, and I loved it!
Donovan is not actually good at math, or science, or school for that matter. After he pulls an epic prank at his middle school he's certain he'll be kicked out for good. Due to an administrative mix-up, however, he ends up being placed in the Academy of Scholastic Distinction for gifted kids. But, while he may feel ungifted when it comes to academics, Donovan might be just the kid they need in the ASD program.
Dead End in Norvelt
By Jack Gantos
This 2012 Newbery winner is HYSTERICAL! Loosely based on the author's childhood, the story follows Jack during a summer in the 1960s. He's "grounded for life" and to make a bad summer worse, his mother has loaned him out to help the old lady next door type up obituaries for the founders of his small town, Norvelt. He thinks it's going to be a boring summer, but boy will he (and you) be surprised by what happens next. Get ready to laugh!
Rump: The (Fairly) True Tale of Rumpelstiltskin
By Liesl Shurtliff
I love all four books in this hilarious fractured fairytale series, but this one about a 12 year old boy named Rump who discovers he has a talent for spinning straw into gold is my favorite of them all. I highly recommend the whole series!
Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing
By Judy Blume
All of the books about Peter, the fourth grade nothing, and his three year old brother Fudge are hysterical, but this one takes the cake. I've loved these since I was a kid and thoroughly enjoyed sharing all the humor with my own kids.
Long Road to the Circus
By Betsy Bird
This was such a fun family read aloud set in 1920s Michigan. It looks like Suzy's summer is going to be full of nothing but chores on her family's farm until she follows her "lag-about" uncle to a nearby farm one morning and ends up bargaining her way into training an ornery ostrich named Gaucho to pull a surrey at the county fair.
Not only is this book charming and hilarious, I loved how the author seamlessly weaved in both history and ostrich facts to the story. We especially enjoyed finding out in the afterword which parts of the story were true - it will surprise you!
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang: The Magical Car
By Ian Fleming
You may have seen the Disney movie, but if you haven't read the book, you're really missing out! You'll laugh out loud as you follow the story of the crazy Pott family and their flying car with a knack for catching escaping criminals.
There's hardly a more perfect family audiobook for a car trip than this one- it's read by David Tenant (who reads it perfectly), this is a timeless classic.
Losers at the Center of the Galaxy
By Mary Winn Heider
This book is about the oddest combination of things: Tubas, Darth Vader's Death March, Jellyfish, Middle School teachers possibly involved in a crime ring, Football, a Bear, and a pop star named Kittentown Dynamo. It's fantastic!
Magic Marks the Spot (Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates)
By Caroline Carlson
This one is especially good as an audiobook! We listened to this story about a girl who desperately wants to become a pirate on a family roadtrip and it had us all in stitches.
It's The End of the World and I'm in My Bathing Suit
By Justin A. Reynolds
It's the day everyone has been waiting for: Beach Bash! But Eddie's great plan to avoid chores all summer has backfired and now he's stuck at home until he can finish all the piles of laundry he's been hiding for months. So, he's alone at home, with nothing clean to wear but his bathing suit when he realizes the world is ending. The apocalypse has never been so funny!
By Keith Calabrese
This book kept reminding me of the movie Adventures in Babysitting! A group of kids discover a kidnapped accountant hiding in the trunk of a car they "borrowed" for what should have been a harmless joyride to get a hamburger, but instead turns into a really wild ride. Laugh-out-loud funny with some of the best and most hilarious characters!
Sideways Stories from Wayside School
By Louis Sachar
This series of books is absurd, but kids love them! These silly stories about a school that was accidentally built sideways and is full of wacky teachers and students are must read books for kids that like to laugh.
The Genius Under the Table: Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain
By Eugene Yelchin
This is a wonderful non-fiction memoir that reads like fiction. It's a very compelling story about what it was like growing up under the iron curtain in the Soviet Union. This is laugh-out-loud funny even as it shares a heartbreaking history. We read this aloud as a family and everyone loved it!
The Original Adventures of Hank the Cowdog
By John R. Erickson
The best way to enjoy this funny book series is to listen on audio. I promise, you cannot listen these stories narrated by a dog without laughing out loud over and over and over. These are roadtrip favorites for our family.
The Season of Styx Malone
By Kekla Magoon
When teenager Styx Malone moves in next door, brothers Caleb and Bobby think he's the coolest kid they've ever met. So when Styx convinces them that they can pull off the best escalator trade ever (trading one small thing for something better over and over until you trade for something great) the brothers are all in. Their hijinks are wild and hilarious. At one point, the brothers even trade their baby sister for a bag of fireworks!
Buckle and Squash: The Perilous Princess Plot
By Sarah Courtauld
This is a super silly fairytale adventure about two sisters, one who dreams of vanquishing monsters and battling dragons, and the other who wants nothing more than to find a handsome prince and live happily ever after. But neither of them get exactly what they want when they run into an evil count disguised as a prince and they end up needing to save a goat.
It Ain't So Awful, Falafel
By Firoozeh Dumas
I recently got this on audio for my girls after I read and loved the author's adult memoir. I half regretted it though when instead of sleeping at night, I kept hearing my girls cracking up in bed as they listened to the story. So, it's a hilarious coming of age novel about an Iranian girl growing up in California in the 1970s, but I wouldn't recommend it for bedtime reading - ha!
By Lois Lowry
This charming parody of classic children's literature delighted me and all of my kids! It's a laugh-out-loud funny story about four children with horrible parents and an even more horrible nanny. But, while we loved the book, the new Netflix movie (very loosely) based on the book was TERRIBLE! A solid case of "the book was better."
How to Eat Fried Worms
By Thomas Rockwell
My mom read this aloud to me and my siblings when we were kids and I've never forgotten how much we laughed. I was so excited to read it aloud to my own kids and delighted to discover that it was still just as funny. Billy takes a truly terrible bet and agrees to eat 15 worms in 15 days so that Alan will pay him $50. Billy thinks it will be easy, but Alan wants to make sure it isn't!
A Long Way from Chicago: A Novel in Stories
By Richard Peck
For seven summers Joey and his sister Mary Alice leave Chicago and head to a sleepy Illinois town to visit their Grandma. Each chapter tells the story of one of those seven summer adventures with grandma and every single one of them is wildly funny!
Addison Cooke and the Treasure of the Incas
By Jonathan W. Stokes
Do you love The Goonies? If so, you'll thoroughly enjoy this good old fashioned adventure with a group of 13 year old boys (and one little sister) on their way to find the lost treasure of the Incas. So much fun!
By Andrew Clements
Nick thinks it will impress his vocabulary-obsessed teacher when he invents a new word. So, he renames a pen, and instead calls it a frindle. Little does he know how fast the word will spread and before he can figure out what's happened, the whole country is using the word "frindle." So funny!
The Beast and the Bethany
By Jack Meggitt-Phillips
Ebenezer Tweezer has lived for 511 years. His secret to longevity is a beast that he keeps in the attic of his mansion, but he has to feed it to keep it happy. After hundreds of years of being appeased, the beast gives Ebenezer an ultimatum: finally bring it a juicy child to eat or all the magic disappears. Ebenezer is uncomfortable with the plan, but not enough to say no. He decides to find the worlds most unpleasant child to feed to the beast. But Bethany is more, much more, than the beast or Ebenezer bargained for.
It's dark humor for sure, but hilarious nonetheless.
The Great Brain
By John D. Fitzgerald
This book takes place in a small fictional town in 19th century Utah where J.D and his brothers make all sorts of hilarious mischief. Young J.D. both fears and idolizes his older brother Tom whom he calls the Great Brain, “a silver tongued genius with a knack for turning a profit.” But while the Great Brain is a character you’ll love to hate, he’ll also have you doubled over with laughter.
Caution: There is a chapter in which a boy who feels “plumb useless” after losing his leg in an accident wants to commit suicide. You can just skip this chapter when you hear the boy talking about being plumb useless. Or, just make sure you have a conversation about it afterwards. Though it had me nail biting for a few minutes wondering how it was going to play out, I thought that in the end it was handled well – but I did still have a serious conversation with my kids about what to do if a friend ever expresses a desire to end their life.
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