Children's Book 'Must Reads' Children's Book 'Must Reads'

To see essential reads for kids of a certain age, just click on one of the tabs below. You'll find some highly recommended reads.



Essential Reads - Ages 0-5

Owl Babies
Martin Waddell
Three little owl babies sit in the tree and wait…and wait…and wait…for their Mummy to come home from hunting. Stunning illustrations match this brilliant classic picture book story. This beautiful board book edition is perfect for little hands. Never has the... Featured in: 3+ readers | Baby and Toddler | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Board book | Released 07/04/2015
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Dear Zoo
Rod Campbell
Have you ever wanted a pet? How do you find the right one? An elephant is too heavy, a giraffe is too tall, a frog is too jumpy. Hidden behind a flap, each new arrival that the zoo sends... Featured in: Baby and Toddler | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 28/03/1985
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Not Now, Bernard
David Mckee
Two of our Guest Editors chose Not Now, Bernard - celebrating it's 35th anniversary in 2015 - as one of their favourite books. Sophie Mckenzie 'This dark, rather depressing picture book opened my eyes to what was possible with children's... Featured in: Baby and Toddler | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 02/04/2015
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The Blue Balloon
Mick Inkpen
This was the book that introduced the lovable Kipper to millions of children the world over. A truly wonderful story to share and to be treasured and loved time and time again. Written in a single afternoon by the author,... Featured in: 3+ readers | Baby and Toddler | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 01/01/2015
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Meg and Mog
Helen Nicoll, Jan Pienkowski
A stunning 40th anniversary edition of one of THE classics of the 20th century that will remain timeless forever. Available in both hardback and paperback in this anniversary edition. Great for sharing or reading alone, this edition celebrates their special... Featured in: Baby and Toddler | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 05/07/2012
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The Baby's Catalogue
Janet Ahlberg, Allan Ahlberg
A new paperback edition of this classic celebration of babies – their dinners, prams, accidents, gardens, bedtimes and bath times, books, pets and even their Mums and Dads. Everything that is familiar to a baby is beautifully captured in Janet... Featured in: Baby and Toddler | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 04/07/2013
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Old Bear
Jane Hissey
November 2012 Book of the Month Old Bear was first published in 1986 and became one of the bestselling picture books ever with spin off merchandise that ensured he became a household name for a whole generation of children. Now,... Featured in: 3+ readers | Baby and Toddler | Bookshelf Essentials | Christmas 2012 | 5+ readers | Jane Hissey - Illustrator
Format: Hardback | Released 01/09/2012
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Tabby McTat
Julia Donaldson
Best-selling author and illustrator Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler have teamed up again to create a heart-warming story about loyalty and friendship. When Tabby McTat the busker's cat gets separated from the busker he begins a new life on his... Featured in: 3+ readers | Books of the Month | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Hardback | Released 07/09/2009
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Stick Man
Julia Donaldson
Creators of The Gruffalo, best selling author/ illustrator Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler are back with another bestseller on their hands. “Stick Man lives in the family tree/ with Stick Lady love/ And his children three”. But one day Stick... Featured in: 3+ readers | Books of the Year 2009 | Bookshelf Essentials | Christmas Gifts | Christmas Gifts | Audio Books
Format: Paperback | Released 07/09/2009
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I Want My Hat Back
Jon Klassen
Shortlisted for the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal 2013 A simply told story with a delicious and irresistible mischievous twist in its ending. Poor Bear! He has lost his hat. He asks everyone if they have seen it but no... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bedtime Reading | Bookshelf Essentials | All Shortlists and Winners | Picture Book Party | Schools
Format: Paperback | Released 03/09/2012
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Hue Boy
Rita Phillips Mitchell
Selected by a distinguished independent panel of experts including our editorial expert, Julia Eccleshare, for Diverse Voices - 50 of the best Children's Books celebrating cultural diversity in the UK. A very big welcome to this beautiful new edition... Featured in: 5+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Diverse Voices | Schools
Format: Paperback | Released 01/11/2012
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Good Night, Gorilla
Peggy Rathmann
All young readers will delight at knowing the trick the animals play on the unsuspecting zoo keeper! It's bedtime and the zoo keeper sets off to lock the animals up for the night. But, the gorilla has a clever plan.... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Summer Reading 2012 | 2012 Great Reads
Format: Paperback | Released 04/06/2012
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All About Alfie
Shirley Hughes
Celebrating thirty years of Alfie, one of the most popular characters in children's books, this is a glorious collection of stories which capture the joy of young children. Shirley Hughes has perfect understanding of the intense relationships with parents and... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 5+ readers
Format: Hardback | Released 01/09/2011
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The Conquerors
David Mckee
In this masterpiece for all ages, best-selling illustrator David McKee has created a miniature morality tale. The General leads his army into one country after another, subjugating the population and bringing them under his command; they are the Conquerors. Finally,... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 5+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 07/07/2005
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Mr Gumpy's Motor Car Book and CD
John Burningham
Award-winning illustrator John Burningham's classic adventure of a delightful day's jaunt in a car. It is a beautiful summer's day when Mr Gumpy decides to set off in his car. The children and all the animals want to join him.... Featured in: 3+ readers | Baby and Toddler | Bookshelf Essentials | Summer Reading 2011
Format: Paperback | Released 02/06/2011
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The Tiger-Skin Rug
Gerald Rose
Full of wit, this classic story tells how a tired old tiger cleverly swaps his dangerous life in the jungle for the easier lifestyle of the Rajah's palace. Becoming a tiger skin rug is not so hard for the thin... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | eBooks
Format: Hardback | Released 18/04/2011
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The Heron and the Crane
John Yeoman
Prize-winning illustrator Quentin Blake's stunning illustrations bring great pathos to this touching story of how two lonely birds make a hash of communicating. Back and forth across the swamp the two leggy birds go as Crane and Heron make offers... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 5+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 03/02/2011
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Susan Laughs
Jeanne Willis
A prize winning title, this introduces Susan who loves to swing, dance, swim, ride do all the things other children do. In fact, she's no different from any other little girl except that, as the final spread shows, she gets... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 03/02/2011
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Up in the Tree
Margaret Atwood
This is a delightfully simple and light-hearted story told with a poetic jauntiness written and illustrated by one of the foremost literary novelists writing today. Two children love their home in a tree, they can feel the wind rushing by... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 5+ readers
Format: Mixed media product | Released 03/05/2010
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Lost and Found: Board Book
Oliver Jeffers
Celebrating the value of friendship, this is an exquisitely illustrated picture book with a simple story line. Opening his door and finding a penguin on it, the little boy takes pity on the sad looking creature who he immediately assumes... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Board book | Released 02/04/2009
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Rosie's Walk (book and audio CD)
Pat Hutchins
A simple and utterly delightful joke lies at the heart of this classic picture book now celebrating its 40th anniversary. Rosie the hen sets out for a walk around the farmyard. The words describe exactly the route Rosie takes as... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 07/01/2010
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Two Monsters
David Mckee
Delightfully witty, Two Monsters is a classic picture book with a strong message about understanding other people's point of view. The Two Monsters live on different sides of the mountain and so see the world from different angles. Communicating through... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 02/10/1997
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Tiddler
Julia Donaldson
Best-selling author/ illustrator of The Gruffalo have created a fantastic new character with Tiddler, the little fish who tells some big stories! Showcasing their remarkable talent at the top of their game, they tell the story of tiddler with humour,... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Audio Books
Format: Paperback | Released 01/09/2008
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Peepo!
Allan Ahlberg
One of our 'Must Reads'. Fabulous illustrations, wonderful rhyming text with not a word out of place; this is a book that no nursery bookshelf can be without. Guaranteed to have huge appeal with babies and young toddlers. It's definitely the... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 07/04/2011
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The Snowman
Raymond Briggs
This is one of the all time favourites of any nursery and certainly a book to turn back to time and time again whether you're a child or an adult. No words, just the most wonderful pictures telling a poignant... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Graphic Novels | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 27/10/2011
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Mog The Forgetful Cat 40th anniversary edition
Judith Kerr
Many happy returns to Mog the Forgetful Cat who has been delighting readers for forty years. Brilliant author-illustrator Judith Kerr's timeless stories about Mog, the cat who has a habit of forgetting everything, charm readers young and old. Toddlers adore... Featured in: 3+ readers | Baby and Toddler | Bookshelf Essentials | Bath Children's Book Festival
Format: Paperback | Released 07/02/2005
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Bears In The Night
Stan Berenstain, Jan Berenstain
One of our 'Must Reads'. Lively pictures, charming characters and the fact that the story only uses 24 words, but to beautiful effect, make this a brilliant book for beginner readers. The bears are running through the woods in the... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 08/08/1991
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Farmer Duck
Martin Waddell
A hugely enjoyable read. Farmer duck toils hard all day while his lazy farmer does nothing. So the duck's many friends decide to club together to get their own back on the lazy farmer and in so doing the duck... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 04/09/1995
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Elmer
David Mckee
Elmer the colourful patchwork elephant has been a nursery favourite since this first book was published in 1989. A modern classic, this picture book is known to millions, and continues to be one of the biggest selling picture books ever,... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Elmer the Elephant
Format: Paperback | Released 06/09/2007
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The Very Hungry Caterpillar
Eric Carle
This is a much-loved classic but as relevant today as it was when first published in 1969! The vivid and colourful illustrations and cut back and die-cut pages, together with some very simple text, provide a wonderful story that is... Featured in: 3+ readers | Baby and Toddler | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 28/11/2002
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Where's Spot?
Eric Hill
This is definitely one of those ‘essential experiences' of childhood. Children identify brilliantly with the naughty little dog through some big bold illustrations, simple text and lots of flaps revealing Spot's many friends. A real classic first published 25 years... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 07/05/2009
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Dogger
Shirley Hughes
Winner of the Greenaway of Greenaways in 2007 and Greenaway winner in 1977. Filled with humour and Shirley Hughes' deft touch, this is a book for young readers to tackle by themselves, as well as a delight to... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | All Shortlists and Winners | Schools
Format: Paperback | Released 05/02/2009
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Each Peach Pear Plum
Allan Ahlberg, Janet Ahlberg
Kate Greenaway Medal winner in 1978. A delightful board book with simple rhyming text and engaging interactive pictures. Children will be able to find characters that are mentioned in the text, such as Mother Hubbard and Cinderella. Wonderful... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bedtime Reading | Bookshelf Essentials | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 13/03/1989
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Hairy Maclary from Donaldson's Dairy
Lynley Dodd
First published in 1983 and still as good today. Written by Lynley Dodd, who is a New Zealander, this is the first in a series of books about the adventures of a scruffy dog ‘Hairy McClary'. Rhyming, catchy and comical... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bedtime Reading | Bookshelf Essentials | 5+ readers | Schools
Format: Paperback | Released 04/07/2013
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We're Going on a Bear Hunt
Michael Rosen
Fantastic, cumulative adventure as a family cheerfully sets out on a brave hunt to find the bear. It could be frightening but they're not scared. They're full of confidence in what they are doing. Caves, mud, rivers, forest … whatever... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 5+ readers | Reluctant Readers | Schools
Format: Paperback | Released 16/09/1993
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Essential Reads - Ages 5+

Where the Wild Things are
Maurice Sendak
Jacqueline Wilson, February 2012 Guest Editor: "The text is very minimal but perfect - and the illustrations are glorious. This isn't a scary book in the slightest, though the monsters are grotesque, equipped with very sharp teeth and pointy claws. Little Max... Featured in: 3+ readers | Bedtime Reading | Books of the Month | Bookshelf Essentials | 5+ readers | Books for Boys | Schools
Format: Paperback | Released 04/05/2000
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The Three Little Wolves and the Big Bad Pig
Eugene Trivizas
This much-loved picture book puts a comic and clever twist on the familiar fairytale. Three polite young wolves set off to make their way in the world and build themselves a charming little house in the country. But their rural... Featured in: 5+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 7+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 29/01/2015
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How Tom Beat Captain Najork and His Hired Sportsmen
Russell Hoban
A must-read for anyone who thinks that fooling about is a waste of time! Through the brilliant combination of Russell Hoban and Quentin Blake, the story celebrates all the skills that children learn on their own. Tom likes nothing more... Featured in: 5+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 7+ readers | Books for Boys
Format: Hardback | Released 22/10/2013
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Monsters
Russell Hoban
John loves drawing monsters. Red monsters. Purple monsters. Spotted monsters. Furry monsters. Any kind of monster. And then he draws just a monster's tail. And that takes up four big pieces of paper….Can John control his monsters? Of course, the... Featured in: 5+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 7+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 22/10/2013
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Tim All Alone
Edward Ardizzone
Tim returns from a long sea voyage to find that his home is boarded up, a ‘To Let' sign in the window, and his parents gone. He cries a little, but resourceful as ever, sets off to find them. Knowing... Featured in: 5+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 7+ readers
Format: Hardback | Released 05/03/2015
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Greyfriars Bobby
Ruth Brown
This classic true story is retold and illustrated in sumptuous style by the renowned Ruth Brown. Featured in: 5+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Summer Reading
Format: Paperback | Released 04/07/2013
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The BFG 30th Anniversary Edition
Roald Dahl
This is a delightful, funny and exciting story about a special friendship between two people from different worlds – a giant and a child. As the story develops it shows how trust and love develops between them. It also shows... Featured in: 5+ readers | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | Summer Reading 2012 | Christmas 2012 | 7+ readers | Reluctant Readers | Schools
Format: Paperback | Released 03/05/2012
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Lady Lollipop
Dick King-smith
Award-winning author Dick King-Smith is best known for 'Babe', the story of the Sheep-Pig. A lover of all animals and a master teller of stories about them, Dick King-Smith was particularly keen on pigs. Lollipop is a pig with a... Featured in: 5+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 05/04/2012
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Grace at Christmas
Mary Hoffman
The much loved star of Amazing Grace is back for a touching new story about a very special time of year. Grace loves Christmas. She loves the nativity, the presents and being with her family. But this year everything is... Featured in: 5+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Hardback | Released 01/09/2011
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Jumping Mouse
Brian Patten
Brian Patten is one of Britain's best-loved poets. This is his retelling of the touching story of Jumping Mouse, a remarkable Native American fol tale and teaching story that has captivated people of all ages for many years. Brian first... Featured in: 5+ readers | Books of the Month | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Hardback | Released 24/05/2010
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The Story of the Little Mole - Plop Up Edition
Werner Holzwarth
Toddlers will love this delightfully entertaining but yucky pop-up (or plop up!) book but perhaps parents will enjoy it a little less although the humour is brilliantly portrayed in it. It's packed full of poos that plop, drop, splish, splosh... Featured in: 5+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Hardback | Released 15/10/2007
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The Church Mouse
Graham Oakley
A brilliant picture book thankfully now back in print. The stunning, detailed and humorous illustrations tell the entertaining story of how Sampson the church cat and Arthur the church mouse take over the local church despite the reservations of the... Featured in: 5+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 23/10/2009
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Aliens in Underpants Save the World
Claire Freedman
The bestselling Aliens decked out in the finest underpants, are back for a new set of adventures. This time it's nothing less than saving the universe – and all with the help of underpants! Easy to read aloud, this ebullient... Featured in: 5+ readers | Books of the Month | Bookshelf Essentials | Summer Reads 2009
Format: Paperback | Released 19/05/2009
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Twinkle Twinkle Chocolate Bar

Age 3+. Here is a collection of more than 80 poems and rhymes from a glittering galaxy of more than 50 poets. It is a delectable assortment of light, melt-in-the-mouth poems for the very young to dip into again and again. They... Featured in: 5+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Poetry
Format: Paperback | Released 05/02/2009
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Wild Washerwomen
John Yeoman
Celebrate liberation! Forced to wash grubby hankies, horrid socks and ghastly towels by their skinflint boss, seven oppressed washerwomen go on strike and, getting aboard a goat cart, set out to have fun. Seven woodcutters think they'll get the better... Featured in: 5+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 02/04/2009
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Michael
Tony Bradman
A wonderful celebration of a boy who is thought to be bad but is just... different! At school, Michael's teachers despair of him. He is late, scruffy, cheeky and doesn't listen. He loves reading and sums and science. But NOT... Featured in: 5+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Reluctant Readers
Format: Paperback | Released 01/01/2009
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Dinosaurs Love Underpants
Claire Freedman
A brilliant sequel to the best selling Aliens Love Underpants. This time there is more hilarious fun as the dinosaurs fight to the death over underpants. Envious of the cavemen's pants, the dinosaurs get all knickers in a twist... Featured in: 5+ readers | Books of the Month | Bookshelf Essentials | NYR 2008 | Summer Reads
Format: Paperback | Released 02/06/2008
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The Cat In The Hat
Dr. Seuss
Classic and best-selling, the rhyming verse story of The Cat in the Hat remains as fresh as when it was first published. Arriving announced and uninvited the exuberant Cat shocks Sally and her brother with the total mayhem he causes.... Featured in: 5+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 05/03/2007
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Fairy Tales Of Hans Christian Andersen
Hans Christian Andersen, Naomi Lewis
Thumbelina, The Nightingale, The Ugly Duckling and The Princess and the Pea, are all here in a wonderful collection of stories written by Hans Christian Anderson. Some of the stories are very moralistic, yet retain a mischievous sense of humour.... Featured in: 5+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 05/11/2007
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Fantastic Mr Fox
Roald Dahl
Ideal as an early introduction to Roald Dahl just as a child is starting to read alone because it's a short story by comparison to some of his others. Filled with quirky black and white illustrations by the... Featured in: 5+ readers | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | Schools | eBooks
Format: Paperback (b Format) | Released 07/02/2013
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The Gruffalo
Julia Donaldson
“A mouse took a stroll through the deep dark wood. A fox saw the mouse and the mouse looked good.”So begins the story of how a clever little mouse outwits his big scary enemy. The tasty little mouse needs... Featured in: 5+ readers | Guest Editor Axel Scheffler | Bedtime Reading | Bookshelf Essentials | Reluctant Readers | Picture Book Parade | Schools
Format: Paperback | Released 21/08/1999
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The Worst Witch
Jill Murphy
The trials and tribulations of a disastrous new girl at Miss Cackle's Academy for Witches a gloriously witchy boarding school, The Worst Witch has magic galore. Unfortunately for Mildred Hubble, most of it has a habit of going badly wrong.... Featured in: 5+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | eBooks
Format: Paperback (b Format) | Released 03/03/2011
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Essential Reads - Ages 7+

My Dad's a Birdman
David Almond
Join a father and daughter as they find their wings together and take to the skies in this funny, tender tale from the master of contemporary storytelling. Featured in: 7+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 9+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 02/04/2015
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Aristotle
Dick King-smith
The best-selling author of The Sheep Pig tells a charming and witty story about a bold young kitten who is always getting into mischief! Aristotle lives with Bella Donna, a very kind, very witchy woman who protects Aristotle as best... Featured in: 7+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 5+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 03/04/2014
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You're Only Young Twice
Quentin Blake
A joyous celebration through Quentin's uniquely original illustrations of the art of ageing. A delightful little picture book to share with any child, but parents and grandparents will delight in its contents too, so in that respect it will make... Featured in: 7+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 9+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 01/01/2099
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Gangsta Granny
David Walliams
Category Winner of The Red House Children's Book Award 2013 & Shortlisted for the Roald Dahl Funny Prize 2012. Following in the footsteps of the great Roald Dahl, David Walliams has shown in his previous titles including Mr Stink... Featured in: 7+ readers | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | All Shortlists and Winners | 9+ readers | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 28/02/2013
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Pippi Longstocking
Astrid Lindgren
Not to be missed, this is a newly translated edition of this classic story about a wonderful little girl. Pippi Longstocking is nine years old; she lives alone with a horse and a monkey and spends her days having wonderfully... Featured in: 7+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 9+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 04/06/2015
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The Hodgeheg
Dick King-smith
This is an absolutely charming modern classic from one of Britain's all-time favourite authors. There is no one more impressive when it comes to animal stories than Dick King-Smith and this one is our favourite. The Hodegheg has everything –... Featured in: 7+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Schools
Format: Paperback | Released 30/06/2010
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The Exploits of Moominpappa
Tove Jansson
'I decided to run away. There simply wasn't anything else to do.' Here at last is Moominpappa's promised life story - from the days when he was abandoned in a newspaper parcel on the doorstep of a Moomin orphanage, to... Featured in: 7+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | eBooks
Format: Hardback | Released 05/01/2012
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The Little Bookroom
Eleanor Farjeon, Edward Ardizzone
This award-winning book is an outstanding collection of stories to inspire dreams and wonder. Eleanor Farjeon has put together an elegant collection of diverse stories that capture mystery and surprise from around the world and moments of homely magic too.... Featured in: 7+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 11+ readers | 9+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 06/10/2011
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Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (illustrated by Helen Oxenbury)
Lewis Carroll
Winner of the 1999 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal Full of the most wondrous wit and humour, wonderful magic and believable nonsense, this particular edition has the most stunning illustrations that complement the imaginative story that's anything but dull. The... Featured in: 7+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Carnegie Greenaway
Format: Paperback | Released 08/05/2001
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The Amazing Adventures of Curd The Lion and Us! in the Land at the Back of Beyond
Alan Gilliland
Reminiscent of the writing of Lewis Carroll and Edward Lear, this brilliant debut children's novel is completely unputdownable as well as being almost uncategorisable. The author has succeeded in delivering on a book that incorporates a terrifically funny yet mysterious story, full... Featured in: 7+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Summer Reading 2011 | 11+ readers | 9+ readers
Format: Hardback | Released 20/10/2008
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Midnight Folk
John Masefield
Highly entertaining, these are a pair of fast paced, classic fantasy adventure stories freshly illustrated by Quentin Blake. In The Midnight Folk, Kay Harker is sent to stay with his bad tempered guardian in a big house in the country.... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Schools | Best Books Guide | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 04/07/2003
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Lizzie Dripping
Helen Cresswell
Lizzie is an archetypal twelve-year-old dreamer who wanders around with her head in the clouds. Despite her family's failure to believe her, Lizzie makes friends with a witch with exciting, funny and often charming consequences. Anyone aged seven to nine... Featured in: 7+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 9+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 06/05/2004
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Black Beauty
Anna Sewell
A truly timeless adventure of a horse with an unbreakable spirit and a bond that eventually goes almost full circle. Animal lovers will love the story of Black Beauty even though the tears will be almost as frequent as the... Featured in: 7+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 9+ readers | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 06/03/2008
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The Firework-maker's Daughter
Philip Pullman
Full of hilarious and likeable characters, this is a book that will be read over and over again. It's one of those rare books with a confident magic and quality all of its own. Children will find Lila wonderfully inspirational... Featured in: 7+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 04/11/2004
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Reader ReviewedThe Butterfly Lion
Michael Morpurgo
The inspiring magic of a white lion brings friendship and hope to a lonely ten year old. Miserable at his boarding school, Bertie runs away. He is rescued by a kind old lady who tells him of how another Bertie,... Featured in: 7+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 9+ readers | Reluctant Readers | Michael Morpurgo Month | Schools | eBooks
Format: Paperback (b Format) | Released 07/05/1996
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Matilda
Roald Dahl
Matilda - Roald Dahl's best-loved story - is an unbelievable 25 years old yet it's as fresh, funny and poignant as when it was first published in 1988. The story of a child genius, it has been adapted into film... Featured in: 7+ readers | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | 9+ readers | eBooks
Format: Paperback (b Format) | Released 07/02/2013
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Stig Of The Dump
Clive King
Published in the early 1960s and yet as relevant today as it was then, this is a book that will captivate the imagination of a 7 or 8 year old – in fact even the most reluctant reader will be... Featured in: 7+ readers | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | 9+ readers | Schools | eBooks
Format: Paperback (a Format) | Released 03/07/2014
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Essential Reads - Ages 9+

Holes
Louis Sachar
Wholly original and brilliantly plotted, Holes is a funny and poignant story about surviving. When Stanley Yelnats is falsely accused of stealing a pair of trainers, he is sent off to Camp Green Lake which is not a camp, not... Featured in: 11+ readers | Author of the Month | Bookshelf Essentials | Summer Reading/Activity | 9+ readers | Reluctant Readers | Schools | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 07/05/2015
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The Golden Age
Kenneth Grahame
By the author of The Wind in the Willows, The Golden Age is a glorious children's classic, full of childhood adventure, imagination and innocence. Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Summer Reading/Activity | 11+ readers | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 26/06/2015
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Reader ReviewedRussian Roulette
Anthony Horowitz
Bestselling Anthony Horowitz doesn't miss a beat in this thrilling new adventure that links back to his favourite hero, Alex Rider through the terrifying and gripping story of Yassen Gregorovich. Gregorovich is ruthless and calculating; he is a contract killer... Featured in: 11+ readers | Alex Rider Series | Bookshelf Essentials | 13+ readers | 9+ readers | Books for Boys | If They Like...They'll Love | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 02/04/2015
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The Wolf Princess
Cathryn Constable
Exciting, atmospheric, romantic and stylish, The Wolf Princess marks a welcome return to the comfort of traditional storytelling. Steeped in history and nostalgia, but delicious in its telling, The Wolf Princess is a celebration of innocence, friendship and resourcefulness. For... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 11+ readers | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 01/01/2015
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Reader ReviewedThe Whisper
Emma Clayton
Twins Mika and Ellie first appeared in The Roar, a suspenseful thriller set in a not-too-distant future Britain in which humanity lives behind a huge concrete wall to protect them from animals carrying a plague. Readers who may not... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 11+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 05/02/2015
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Reader ReviewedBeowulf
Michael Morpurgo
Artfully retold and magnificently illustrated, this companion volume to Sir Gawain and the Green Knight is made instantly accessible to children by a formidable children's book partnership. In addition... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 11+ readers | 7+ readers | Books for Boys | Michael Morpurgo Month
Format: Paperback | Released 03/10/2013
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Skellig
David Almond
Special hardback gift edition celebrating 15 years of Skellig - one of the best-known, most-awarded debut children's novels of the past 20 years. This is a wonderfully eerie and magical story about believing in something extra special and why it... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Christmas 2013 | 11+ readers | Books for Boys | Schools | eBooks
Format: Hardback | Released 05/09/2013
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When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit
Judith Kerr
This unforgettable story of a Jewish family fleeing Germany before the Second World War, is now available in a special hardback edition to celebrate the 90th birthday of its author Judith Kerr, with a reproduction of the original illustrated cover. Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 11+ readers
Format: Hardback | Released 14/06/2013
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Mio's Kingdom
Astrid Lindgren
From the world famous creator of Pippi Longstocking comes this touching magical adventure about an unhappy little boy who meets a genie and is transported from the misery of his life to Farawayland. Once Karl Anders, an unwanted foster child,... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 07/07/2011
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Muddle Earth
Chris Riddell, Paul Stewart
Prize-winning author and illustrator duo Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell are masters of creativity. Muddle Earth is a cracking adventure set in a topsy turvy world peopled with incredible characters such as a wizard who knows only one spell, an... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 04/03/2011
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Follyfoot
Monica Dickens
A pony lover's dream, Follyfoot is a great adventure story which will also touch the heart of all who care about animals. Full of drama and action which shows children acting resourcefully to protect their beloved horses; this is a... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Summer Reading 2010 | 11+ readers | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 08/07/2010
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Hounds of the Morrigan
Pat O'shea
If you loved Harry Potter, then you should seriously try this captivating fantasy adventure that has just been reissued for a new generation of readers. Itâ•’s a hugely enjoyable quest featuring appealing characters and packed with invention with good versus... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 02/04/2009
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The Little White Horse (The Secret of Moonacre film tie-in edition)
Elizabeth Goudge
This edition of The Little White Horse celebrates the release of the motion picture with 8 pages of colour stills taken from the film. The novel has been a favourite of many a child since it was first published... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 01/10/2008
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Tom's Midnight Garden
Philippa Pearce
Winner of the 1958 CILIP Carnegie Medal A classic time slip story in which Tom, staying in big house now divided into flats, manages to get into the garden at night and make friends with a little girl. But who... Featured in: 9+ readers | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | Carnegie Greenaway | 7+ readers | Schools | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 02/04/2015
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Goodnight Mister Tom
Michelle Magorian
A heart breaking and heart warming story of a special friendship that grows between Willie Beech, evacuated to the country to avoid the Blitz on London, and Tom Oakley, the reserved old man who takes him in. Willie has been... Featured in: 9+ readers | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | 11+ readers | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 03/07/2014
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The Wee Free Men
Terry Pratchett
First published in 2003, The Wee Free Men is the second story in the Discworld series for young readers. The Queen of the Elves has another attempt at invading the Discworld, by stealing children and infesting dreams. However 9-year-old Tiffany... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 11+ readers | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 29/04/2004
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The Spook's Apprentice (Wardstone Chronicles 1)
Joseph Delaney
Thomas Ward is the seventh son of a seventh son and has been apprenticed to the local Spook. The job is hard, the Spook is distant and many apprentices have falled before Thomas. Somehow Thomas must learn how to exorcise... Featured in: 9+ readers | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | 11+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 02/01/2014
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Peter Pan
J.M. Barrie
This is the complete and unabridged original text from J M Barrie, complete with a stunning new cover and black and white chapter heads, the perfect companion to its sequel by Geraldine McCaughrean, Peter Pan in Scarlet. Together, they... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Audio Books | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 04/10/2007
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Peter Pan In Scarlet
Geraldine Mccaughrean
At last a sequel to one of the most endearing classics of all time. The author chosen to undertake this literary feat is not a household name but she is, a supremely talented storyteller and a winner of virtually every... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Audio Books
Format: Paperback | Released 04/10/2007
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Flambards
K. M. Peyton
Christina is sent to stay with her terrifying uncle and her cousins at Flambards, a rambling house in the country where riding and hunting are the most prized activities. Everything about the countryside - and her relatives - is new... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 11+ readers | Oxford Centenary | Pony Mad | Schools
Format: Hardback | Released 02/08/2007
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The Lion The Witch And The Wardrobe
C S Lewis
One of our 'Must Reads'. C.S Lewis's classic fantasy book The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe tells the story of the four Pevensie children, Lucy, Peter, Edmund, and Susan, and their adventures in the mystical world of... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Schools
Format: Paperback (b Format) | Released 20/06/2005
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Carrie's War
Nina Bawden
Chosen by Jacqueline Wilson, February 2012 Guest Editor: "This is a very touching utterly convincing book about three wartime evacuees billeted to Wales. It's very much a children's story, with a mystery to be solved, but Nina Bawden is very subtle with... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Reluctant Readers | eBooks
Format: Paperback (b Format) | Released 03/07/2014
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The Wolves of Willoughby Chase
Joan Aiken
A wonderful adventure as two children flee from the yranny of their wicked guardian and bravely set out on the road to London. Miss Slighcarp is as chilling as her words sound and she is now in charge of Bonnie... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | eBooks
Format: Paperback (b Format) | Released 04/03/2004
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The Hobbit
J R R Tolkien
An absolute classic of children's literature, the great adventure of Bilbo Baggins and the Dwarfs. It's important to remember how long ago this book was written, the style is not that of a modern children's book, but the magic of... Featured in: 9+ readers | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | The Hobbit
Format: Paperback (b Format) | Released 07/06/2012
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Charlotte's Web
E B White
Magical, this timeless farmyard story tells of the power of friendship. When the runty little piglet is saved from an early death, he grows into a fine and handsome pig. And the farmer wants to kill him. Can Charlotte, the... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 7+ readers | Reluctant Readers
Format: Paperback (b Format) | Released 03/07/2014
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The Granny Project
Anne Fine
When Granny begins to need more looking after, Mum and Dad decide she'd be better off in a home. But Ivan, Tanya, Nicholas and Sophie have other ideas. Saving Granny soon becomes the topic for their school project as well... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Schools | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 01/06/2006
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Essential Reads - Ages 11+

Wolf Brother: Book 1 Chronicles of Ancient Darkness
Michelle Paver
Rich in detail which brings the past to life and makes the forest background vivid to all readers, Wolf Brother tells how orphaned Torak must set out on a terrible mission. Tricked, trapped and betrayed at almost every turn, it's... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Chronicles of Ancient Darkness | Audio Books
Format: Paperback | Released 27/05/2005
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A Spoonful of Jam
Michelle Magorian
Best-selling Michelle Magorian brings the magic of theatre and the joys – and terrors – of performance to life in this exciting, funny and touching story about Elie's first excursion onto the stage. Set after World War Two has ended... Featured in: 11+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 9+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 26/02/2015
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Reader ReviewedThe Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
Sherman Alexie
A remarkable and heart warming story of survival that avoids sadness or sentimentality because of its original story telling and brilliant black humour. Junior relates the complicated journey of his life travelling from the poverty and lack of opportunity on... Featured in: 11+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 13+ readers | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 29/01/2015
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A Little Love Song
Michelle Magorian
A tender love story and coming of age novel set against a backdrop of wartime uncertainty and it tells how the war effects the sleepy town that Rosie lives in and especially how it effect her and her search for... Featured in: 11+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 07/05/2015
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I am David
Anne Holm
Anne Holm's novel, first published in the UK in 1965, is one of the most honest and searing accounts for children of man's inhumanity to man. It's also one of the most hopeful. It tells the haunting story of a... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | The Classics | 11+ readers
Format: Hardback | Released 29/01/2015
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Coram Boy
Jamila Gavin
The harsh realities of 18th century life, of slavery, of prejudice, of tragedy, of corruption, of the haves and the have-nots are woven together incredibly intricately and yet quite simply told too. Rest assured this book will have... Featured in: 11+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 13+ readers | Books for Boys | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 01/01/2015
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Then Again, Maybe I Won't
Judy Blume
Best-selling Judy Blume has made her reputation by writing books which show the world from a child's point of view. She is skilful at catching how children see the world and how they make sense of it and deal with... Featured in: 11+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 04/11/2011
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The Roald Dahl Treasury
Roald Dahl
Divided into four themed sections - Animals; Magic; Family, Friends and Foes; and, Matters of Importance, this collection of extracts, poems, letters and memoirs introduces some of the author's characters from Willy Wonka to the BFG, from the Witches to... Featured in: 11+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 9+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 04/09/2003
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Artemis Fowl: Book 1 (Puffin Modern Classics)
Eoin Colfer
Winner of the Puffin of Puffins. Chosen as the Puffin Modern Classic 2000 - 2009. Although only twelve years old, Artemis Fowl is already famous as a criminal master-mind. But, when he kidnaps Captain Holly Short of the... Featured in: 11+ readers | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | 9+ readers | Schools
Format: Paperback | Released 03/06/2010
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The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas
John Boyne
Voted 2009 Penguin Orange readers' Group Book of the year Now a major film released in September 2008. When Bruno's father is promoted to a new job, the family have to move from their... Featured in: 11+ readers | Bookzone | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | 13+ readers | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 01/02/2007
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The Weirdstone Of Brisingamen
Alan Garner
A World Book Day 'Recommended Read' for 2011 One of our 'Must Reads'. Alan Garner weaves together Arthurian Legend and local folklore to stunning effect in this magical adventure. 10 year olds and upwards will devour this weird and wonderful... Featured in: 11+ readers | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 02/09/2010
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The Earthsea Quartet
Ursula K Le Guin
Ursula Le Guin's creation of Earthsea, an ancient world of wizards, magic, darkness and light and an ever-shifting balance of power is an acknowledged masterpiece. It's undoubtedly one of the major works of fantasy from the 20th century. With wonderful... Featured in: 11+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 24/06/1993
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Sara's Face
Melvin Burgess
As ever, Melvin Burgess makes readers think. Sara signs up for a face transplant but is it her who wants it or, is she being pushed into doing it against her will by the scarred pop-star who wants her face?... Featured in: 11+ readers | Books of the Year 2008 | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 22/09/2007
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Reader ReviewedWar Horse
Michael Morpurgo
Michael Morpurgo's tender story of Joey, a brave hearted farm horse who finds himself caught up in the horrors of war, cleverly conveys both the violence and the occasional compassion, which occurs during conflict. A classic story of animal courage... Featured in: 11+ readers | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | Michael Morpurgo Month | Best Books Guide | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 04/09/2006
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Just In Case
Meg Rosoff
Winner of the 2007 CILIP Carnegie Medal and Winner of the Costa Children's book award.A razor-sharp portrait of a teenage boy and his relationship with his image, his inner life and fate itself. Shortlisted for the prestigious Carnegie... Featured in: 11+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | All Shortlists and Winners | Carnegie Greenaway | Schools | eBooks
Format: Paperback (b Format) | Released 07/06/2007
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Fearless
Tim Lott
This book is awesome in its power. A chilling fable of a heroic girl prepared to risk everything in the pursuit of justice. The heroine is an inspiration for all who read about her. Though written primarily for the 9-12... Featured in: 11+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 04/06/2007
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Book of Dead Days
Marcus Sedgwick
An intriguing, action-packed, highly readable story that has a twist in it that you'll never guess. The characters are beautifully drawn and the storyline very original. If you're not into fantasy this is the author to get you into it... Featured in: 11+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | eBooks
Format: Paperback (b Format) | Released 03/05/2004
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Noughts and Crosses
Malorie Blackman
Selected by a distinguished independent panel of experts including our editorial expert, Julia Eccleshare, for Diverse Voices - 50 of the best Children's Books celebrating cultural diversity in the UK. Michael Rosen on a compelling favourite: "A book that dared... Featured in: 11+ readers | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | Diverse Voices | 13+ readers | Reluctant Readers | Schools
Format: Paperback | Released 08/08/2006
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Reader ReviewedPrivate Peaceful
Michael Morpurgo
Shortlisted for the Blue Peter Best Book of the Decade & One of our 'Must Reads'. It will seem odd when reading this book that the author enjoyed writing it the most of all the 90 or so he has... Featured in: 11+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 9+ readers | Reluctant Readers | Michael Morpurgo Month | Schools | Bath Kids Book Festival | The World Wars | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 29/05/2004
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The Eagle Of The Ninth
Rosemary Sutcliff
The Eagle of the Ninth is one of the most celebrated children's books of the twentieth century and is now the subject of a major film, The Eagle, starring Channing Tatum. This new edition, with its movie tie-in cover, is... Featured in: 11+ readers | Books vs Films | Bookshelf Essentials | Schools | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 07/10/2004
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The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
Mark Haddon
Mark Haddon's best-selling story of how Christopher, a boy with Asperger's syndrome, sees the world and makes sense of it in his own particular way became a success for children and adults alike. When Christopher finds a dead dog on... Featured in: 11+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Summer Reading 2012 | 13+ readers | Reluctant Readers | Books for Boys | Schools | Audio Books | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 13/02/2014
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Holes
Louis Sachar
October 2011 Guest Editor Roddy Doyle: "Boys in jail – a great idea. The jail has no roof and they have to dig huge holes in the baking sun all day – it's getting even better. I read Holes in... Featured in: 11+ readers | Audio Books | Author Favourites | Bookshelf Essentials | 9+ readers | Reluctant Readers | Book Week 2006 | Schools | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 07/05/2015
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Watership Down
Richard Adams
Watership Down is an epic journey, a stirring tale of adventure, courage and survival against the odds. First published in 1972, this paperback reissue with a stunning new cover celebrates its 40th anniversary. Stunning and compulsive are two words that best... Featured in: 9+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 11+ readers | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 01/03/2012
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Essential Reads - Ages 13+

The Lord Of The Rings
J R R Tolkien
Philip Reeve, June 2012 Guest Editor: "The Lord of the Rings was my favourite book of all as a child - my mum and dad read it to me when I was about nine, and after that I read it... Featured in: 11+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Schools
Format: Paperback (b Format) | Released 05/06/1995
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Reader ReviewedInfinite Sky
C. J. Flood
Winner of The Branford Boase Award 2014. Shot through with danger as adolescence can be, this is a powerful coming of age novel which combines dark realities with optimism and naivety. When Iris's mother takes off on a road trip,... Featured in: 13+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Schools
Format: Paperback | Released 14/07/2014
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How I Live Now
Meg Rosoff
This is a special Movie Tie-in edition of How I Live Now, Meg Rosoff's debut novel originally published by Penguin in 2004. It won the Guardian and Branford Boase Awards and was shortlisted for the Orange Prize for New Fiction... Featured in: 11+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 13+ readers | Schools | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 05/09/2013
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Maggot Moon
Sally Gardner
One of our Books of the Year 2013. Winner of the two most prestigious children's book awards - the CILIP Carnegie Medal 2013 and the Children's Costa Award... Featured in: 13+ readers | Books of the Year | Bookshelf Essentials | All Shortlists and Winners | Summer Reading | Carnegie Greenaway | Hot Key Books | Schools | UKLA Book Awards | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 03/01/2013
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Nation
Terry Pratchett
Hugely entertaining, this is a fully envisaged fantasy adventure, which makes serious points about the importance of the past from the master storyteller and author of the hugely popular Discworld series. Survival! Mau's world is bowled over and swept away... Featured in: 13+ readers | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | All Shortlists and Winners | Christmas Gifts | 11+ readers | Schools | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 08/10/2009
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Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl.
Anne Frank
Chosen by Michael Rosen. First published over 60 years ago, Anne Frank's Diary of a Young Girl has reached millions of young people throughout the world. However, the recent major new BBC TV dramatisation has brought her extraordinary writing to... Featured in: 13+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Laureates' Picks | 11+ readers | Schools
Format: Paperback | Released 31/01/2002
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The Hunger Games
Suzanne Collins
Jacqueline Wilson, February 2012 Guest Editor: "I don't usually go for blockbuster dystopian stories - but this trilogy is imaginatively conceived and well written and a genuine page-turner. Sixteen year old Katniss takes part in a terrifying annual televised game where teenagers fight... Featured in: 13+ readers | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | 11+ readers | Schools | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 05/01/2009
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The Time Machine
H G Wells
When a Victorian scientist propels himself into the year 802,701 AD, he is initially delighted to find that suffering has been replaced by beauty, contentment and peace. Entranced at first by the Eloi, an elfin species descended from man, he... Featured in: 13+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Schools
Format: Paperback | Released 31/03/2005
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Tamar
Mal Peet
Winner of the Carnegie Medal 2006.What the judges said: This is an enthralling and multi-layered novel that traces the story of two men caught up in secret operations in World War Two.It looks at the negative... Featured in: 13+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | All Shortlists and Winners | 11+ readers | Schools | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 05/01/2012
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Gulliver's Travels
Jonathan Swift
When Gulliver finds himself washed up on the shores of the island of Lilliput inhabited by ‘little people' and taken prisoner his life is to change forever but that is just the beginning of his story. For following his escape... Featured in: 13+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 11+ readers | Schools | Audio Books | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 30/01/2003
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Angelmonster
Veronica Bennett
Sixteen-year-old step sisters Mary and Jane are bored. Longing for romance they dream of attracting the attention of a rich and handsome man who will take them away to somewhere foreign and interesting. When the poet Shelley walks... Featured in: 13+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 03/10/2013
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Teacher's Dead
Benjamin Zephaniah
If the first page doesn't make you want to read on then this isn't the book for you. It's violent and to the point – it's psychological suspense at its best and provides a window into a school where respect... Featured in: 13+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Schools | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 03/09/2007
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Collected Short Stories Of Roald Dahl, Omnibus Volume
Roald Dahl
Forget what you thought about Roald Dahl from the BFG, The Twits and Matilda. Here is a collection of some his most intriguing, dark, macabre, yet always entertaining short stories aimed for the older teen. Dahl manages to inject black... Featured in: 13+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials
Format: Paperback | Released 29/10/1992
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The Catcher In The Rye
J D Salinger
Shortlisted for the 2009 Penguin Orange Readers' Group Book of the Year. One of our 'Must Reads'. A great teenage classic. Holden Caufield is the ultimate outsider; he is expelled from school, falls out with his friends... Featured in: 13+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Schools
Format: Paperback | Released 04/03/2010
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Moby Dick: Or, The Whale
Herman Melville
A swashbuckling adventure story of seemingly epic proportions. The plot follows a half-crazed sea captain who seeks bitter revenge on a white whale who previously deprived him of his legs. Extraordinary details of ships, whale anatomy, and the nature of... Featured in: 11+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | 13+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 14/12/2002
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Being
Kevin Brooks
One of our 'Must Reads'. Who is Robert? When he goes in for his operation, Robert is sure he knows exactly who he is. But, things look different when the surgeon opens him up. It leads Robert to set off... Featured in: 13+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | eBooks
Format: Hardback | Released 01/03/2007
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Forever
Judy Blume
Controversial when it was first published, Forever is a classic title which tenderly describes a first love affair and a first sexual experience. Michael and Katherine are in their last year at school when they begin going out together. They... Featured in: 13+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | YA readers | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 01/01/2015
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Junk
Melvin Burgess
Winner of the 1996 CILIP Carnegie Medal When it was published in 1996 it created a Storm of Protest - especially from those who didn't bother to read it. The book, however, is credible, honest, realistic, moving and sympathetic -... Featured in: 13+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | Carnegie Greenaway | YA readers | Schools | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 03/04/2014
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Before I Die
Jenny Downham
This is a haunting yet truly amazing read but don't read it too young. Definitely not for someone less than 14 years old. If you knew you were going to die what would you want to do? Imagine this from... Featured in: 13+ readers | Books of the Year 2008 | Books vs Films | Audio Books | Bookshelf Essentials | All Shortlists and Winners | YA readers | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 02/07/2015
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Henry Tumour
Anthony McGowan
Winner of the Booktrust teenage prize in 2006, Henry Tumour is exceedingly funny, compulsive, thought-provoking, challenging, dark and tragic by turns. As Mal Peet, another author of brilliant teenage fiction said, ‘Henry Tumour is a boisterous, anarchic, frequently vulgar comedy.... Featured in: 13+ readers | Bookshelf Essentials | YA readers | Guest Editor
Format: Paperback | Released 05/04/2007
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Sweet
Julie Burchill
Definitely for the older teenager, Burchill has written about a gritty, urban and larger than life world. It's smart, funny, full of wit – the Julie Burchill trademark – and it really captures the life and soul of teenage angst... Featured in: YA readers | Books of the Year 2008 | Bookshelf Essentials | 13+ readers | eBooks
Format: Paperback | Released 05/10/2007
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New is not necessarily better

At Lovereading4kids we are constantly asked to recommend great books for children and so far we have focused on mainly new books.

However there are some books that we think will grow old gracefully and will affect a new generation as powerfully as the generation before. Simply Essential reading.

Just click on the age range you are interested above the books.

To create this list Lovereading4kids has worked closely with Julia Eccleshare to create a list of ‘essential reads in childhood’ – those titles which we think should be read as part of growing up.

So now, in addition to being guided on the best of the new children’s titles, we're delighted to be able to guide you through those titles we feel have a timeless quality about them and should appear in every child's life at some point.

To view a range of classic literature from Alice (Alice in Wonderland) to Zeus (Tales of the Greek Heroes), then click here.


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