What are Hi-lo Books

Glossary > Hi-lo

💬 Definition of Hi-lo

The term hi-lo stands for high interest with a lower reading level and refers to books that engage the readers through simple vocabulary, short chapters, and captivating plots.

Related questions about hi-lo

What's the purpose of hi-lo books?

Hi-lo books are meant to help struggling readers, those that find it difficult to read an entire book without losing interest, but also those who haven't perfected their reading skills yet. Hilo books help build reading fluency, vocabulary, and interest in reading.

These books have a great cover and a short word count, which increases the chances of people being interested in the book from start to finish -- hence the term hi-lo. Besides the shorter paragraphs and simple syntax, hi-lo books have more white space than typical books and are also filled with dialogues (fiction) or quotes (nonfiction). 

Hi-lo books for teens are also great for adults who want to learn a second language through reading.

Are there more genres of hi-lo books?

Hi-lo books can be fiction or nonfiction.

  • Hi-lo fiction books

Although the content of these books can address adults, they rely on action-packed or highly engaging plots, conflicts, and dialogues that make the reader turn the pages faster. They're light on description and have characters people can resonate with. 

  • Hi-lo nonfiction

The books from this genre need to tackle subjects of high interest to any reader. This means publishers should look for topics that are popular, surprising, or even shocking, facts that would leave people in awe, or biographies of celebrities and public figures. The topics can also include tech-related discoveries and other novelties that keep the reader up to what's happening around the world.

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