The first chapter book I remember reading as a child would be Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIHM. This was a wonderful tale of life struggles, family bonds, friendships and courage, all told from the points of view of rats! We read it in elementary school and I loved it! The movie was just as great as the books!
From Goodreads: “Mrs. Frisby, a widowed mouse with four small children, is faced with a terrible problem. She must move her family to their summer quarters immediately, or face almost certain death. But her youngest son, Timothy, lies ill with pneumonia and must not be moved. Fortunately, she encounters the rats of NIMH, an extraordinary breed of highly intelligent creatures, who come up with a brilliant solution to her dilemma. And Mrs. Frisby in turn renders them a great service.”