What is Orca's Hi-Lo?

What makes Orca's hi-lo different? Like any bestseller, every Orca novel for striving readers begins its life as a creative spark in a talented writer. Our editors work closely with writers, mindful not only of meeting the technical requirements of the reluctant-reader audience, but also the need for a good story, well told. And readers recognize this. They may not realize what they are responding to, but we have seen time and time again that striving readers return to the shelf for Orca stories.

Ultra-Readable Format

Now, these best books for aspiring readers are available in an ultra-readable format so they can continue to create readers who reach for more books.

Our goal is to engage all readers, including striving readers, English-language learners, dyslexic readers and those with other learning challenges. Our books are now more accessible than ever while still telling a great story.


  • Relatable, realistic fiction
  • Short chapters
  • Simplified sentence structures
  • Fast-paced plots that push you to keep reading
  • Fry and AR lexiles available




  • Larger trim size
  • Dyslexia-friendly, more readable font
  • Increased spacing between words and lines
  • Cream-colored paper to minimize contrast so readers can focus more easily
  • The same captivating stories your readers reach for





Learn more about Orca Hi-Lo

Introducing Ultra-Readable Hi-Lo

Meet the Authors




Orca Series for Striving Readers

Orca Currents

Middle-school fiction for striving readers
Orca Currents are short, high-interest novels with contemporary themes written specifically for middle-school students reading below grade level.

Reading levels from grade 2.0 to 5.0. Interest level ages 10–14.

Learn more about Orca Currents.


Orca Limelights

Middle-school fiction for striving readers
Orca Limelights stories are aimed at middle schoolers and teens with an interest in the performing arts. Topics include music, dance, theater, circus and magic.

Reading levels from grade 3.5 to 6.5. Interest level ages 11–14.

Learn more about Orca Limelights.


Orca Sports

Exciting sports-themed stories for striving readers
Orca Sports stories engage middle-schoolers and teens with fast-paced plots and easy-to-read language. Topics include a variety of team and individual sports.

Reading levels from grade 2.0 to 4.5. Interest level ages 10+.

Learn more about Orca Sports.


Orca Soundings

Short, high-interest novels for teens
Orca Soundings are short, high-interest novels written specifically for teens. These edgy stories with compelling characters and gripping storylines are ones they will want to read.

Reading levels from grade 2.0 to 4.5. Interest level ages 12+.

Learn more about Orca Soundings.


Rapid Reads

Short, High-Interest Fiction & Nonfiction for Adults and Teens
Rapid Reads are short novels and nonfiction books for adult readers. They are intended for a diverse audience, including ESL students, reluctant readers, adults who struggle with literacy and anyone who wants a high-interest quick read.

Reading levels from grade 2.0 to 6.0. Interest level ages 16+.

Learn more about Rapid Reads.