Liam by Benjamin Zephaniah


Liam by Benjamin Zephaniah

The photo was small. I clicked to enlarge it. It was upside down. I clicked to rotate it. Then I stopped. As I stared into the computer screen I couldn't believe what I saw. A handsome, tall black man, with very short hair, wearing a black suit. He had on a pair of those small round glasses that clever people wear, and he looked so happy. Liam's life is going well. He's done okay in his GCSEs; he's getting pretty good at playing the guitar. If he could just persuade Amy Zyskowski to go out with him, everything would be perfect. Oh, and if he could find out who his real parents are...*Help Key Stage 3 students move from Level 3a to Level 4c in reading. *Support comprehension with fascinating and contemporary illustrations. *Encourage shared and guided reading using the ready-made tasks and discussion points on the activity pages at the back of the book.


'Liam by Benjamin Zephaniah was very enjoyable and funny for teenagers: high interest level and clearly written, accessible and engaging, with topics that young people can relate to. Would appeal to weak readers at KS4 as well as KS3 which is a major strength.'

'Boys were very excited and I haven't seen boys of this ability as engaged in their reading. Students had no idea what a gladiator was and were impressed when they found out. All wanted to be gladiators by the end of it! Much better than the competition.'

'At the end of the session, three boys asked if they could take Lone Wolf home. This has never happened before.'

'Students loved Lone Wolf. The pace was good and they enjoyed the illustrations. The amount of text per page was good and lent itself to listening to children reading aloud in a group. My dyslexic children found the pages easier to read because of the line spacing. Some great opportunities for extension work.'

'This is the only book I have ever wanted to read.' 'I like reading stories about people like me.'

'I trialled this story with my Year 8 dyslexic group and a Year 9 bottom set. It was an excellent text with which to develop inference skills: students had lots of ideas about the twist as we picked up clues. Good chapter lengths and cliff-hangers at end of sections. Humour appealed. One reluctant reader asked to take it home to finish. Another said can I get a read? - unheard of! One of the best.'

About the Author

Benjamin Zephaniah

Poet, novelist and playwright Benjamin Zephaniah was born on 15 April 1958. He grew up in Jamaica and the Handsworth district of Birmingham, England, leaving school at 14. He moved to London in 1979 and published his first poetry collection, Pen Rhythm, in 1980. Benjamin Zephaniah is an internationally renowned performance poet and acclaimed author of bestselling YA novels: FACE, GANGSTA RAP, TEACHER’S DEAD, REFUGEE BOY and TERROR KID.

He has been Writer in Residence at the Africa Arts Collective in Liverpool and Creative Artist in Residence at Cambridge University, and was a candidate for the post of Professor of Poetry at Oxford University. He holds an honorary doctorate in Arts and Humanities from the University of North London (1998), was made a Doctor of Letters by the University of Central England (1999). Benjamin lives in Lincolnshire.

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Book Info


56 pages
Interest Age: From 11


Benjamin Zephaniah
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Author's Website


Publication date

12th November 2012



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