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The books in this section have been given a primary age range of 7+. At 7 most children are ready to move to chapter books that have a wider range of characters and situations, with more challenging vocabulary but well illustrated. The books in this section are suitable for 7-8+ The books in this section might also be given a secondary age range. Some will be suitable to 5+ year olds reading above their age and the content will be interesting and relevant to a 5 year old. Where indicated, 9 year olds reading below their age will also find these books suitable.
Fascinating, easy-to-understand text by zoologist, researcher and writer, Dr Nick Crumpton is complemented by amazingly detailed dinosaur artwork on every spread from talented illustrator, Gavin Scott. It features jaw-dropping research that will debunk many myths about all kinds of prehistoric creatures - If you want to be able to do more than tell a Tyrannosaurus from a Triceratops, then this is the book for you! The LoveReading LitFest invited Nick Crumpton to the festival to talk about his informative, inventive and brilliantly entertaining dinosaur book! You can view the event by subscribing to the LitFest programme for as little as £6 per month - or you can pay per view. For just £2, go, and watch this superb event chaired by our young Reading Ambassadors Charlie (7) and Fin (9). Check out a preview of the event here.
A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month September 2021 | September 2021 Book of the Month | Mysteries pile up on top of one another in Cookie’s latest hilarious adventure. There are numerous secrets to uncover, several codes to crack, a number of unusual occurrences and a very important Nani who arrives from Bangladesh for a visit. Underlying all the gripping mystery and the comedy there is a simple message about the importance of both arts and science in school. Konnie Huq’s fast-paced story is brilliantly brought to life in her witty line illustrations which have a raft of jokes all of their own. With lots of additional information about codes as well as instructions on some of the things Cookie loves to make, this is a book to return to again and again. Konnie Huq is our Guest Editor, September 2021 - find out more about the Cookie series and her top children's book recommendations!
It’s a space adventure, Jim, but not as we know it! Climb aboard the Star Cat, half-spaceship, half-cat, as it travels the infinite void of space. There you’ll meet its well-meaning if frequently malfunctioning crew: Captain Spaceington, Science Officer PLIXX, Pilot and Robot One. They patrol the galaxy fuelled by ice-cream and ever-ready (almost anyway) to save the universe, especially from arch enemy, the four-cornered fiend Dark Rectangle. This chunky collection brings together six of these brilliant stories, first published in the Phoenix Comic, and each one is guaranteed to have you on the edge of your seat one minute, rolling on the floor laughing the next. Space adventures don’t come more comic than this, and comic strip adventures don’t come better than Star Cat.
Marnie Blue is shocked when lots of plastic rubbish starts to appear in Mermaid Lagoon. It's causing all sorts of problems and even harming the underwater animals. Marnie and her friends decide enough is enough and they must have a big green clean-up. But just where is all the plastic coming from? With the help of the local Brinies group, a new dolphin pal and a human friend, the mermaids come up with a plan to rid the lagoon of plastic junk for good.
September 2021 Book of the Month | Warning: this is the kind of book you can get lost in. Open at random for a quick bit of browsing, and you’ll find yourself engrossed, turning page after page to absorb its assortment of marvellous facts and weird true stories. Whatever takes your fancy, whether it’s space, animals, sport, vehicles or words or numbers, you’ll find information herein to boggle the mind, all brightly and attractively presented across large colour pages. Fun to look at, fascinating to read, this will prompt all sorts of ‘Did you know …?’ conversations. Great fun!
September 2021 Book of the Month | The opening poem in Joshua Seigal’s sparkling new collection invites readers to ‘fill the world with words’, and he does a very good job of doing just that in poems that represent his audience’s world perfectly. Here are poems about classrooms, playtime, grandparents, chocolate biscuits – all just right to read aloud and deliciously easy to remember. There are poems that deliver jokes, poems that play with sense and their shape, poems that sneak in deeper meanings too as they describe familiar emotions. One thing is for certain, everyone will find a favourite in this collection, a poem they’ll want to read to someone else. It ends with a selection of Seigal’s tips for children on writing poetry and I think lots of readers will be inspired to add their own poems to the world as a result.
What a witty feast of sing-song verse and visuals this is. Chris Riddell’s vibrant characters whish and whoosh in rhythm with Neil Gaiman’s rambunctious rhymes to create a hearty banquet befitting a pirate crew. The swaggering story begins when a brother and sister are introduced to their babysitter, a certain scar-faced, grey-haired, peg-legged ship’s cook called Long John Mc Ron. Moments after their parents have left, Long John opens the door to an entire crew of hungry pirates, and so he does what any respectable ship’s cook would do – he cooks up “Pirate Stew! Pirate Stew! Eat it and you won’t be blue. You can be a pirate too!” With a rib-tickling twist that will send readers into fits of giggles, Pirate Stew is buccaneering blast of a book that demands to be read aloud, acted out and treasured like ill-gotten gains!
September 2021 Debut of the Month | Alston is a debut author who looked in vain for a hero or heroine who looked like him in fantasy novels – and this delivers and so much more too. Amari is a child who attends a posh school on a scholarship – but really finds it hard to fit in and avoid the bullies. Her mother is a hard-working health worker, and her brother Quinton is missing – his disappearance seems be the root of Amari’s difficulties. As the holidays approach Amari receives an invitation via a mysterious messenger to be considered for something (at this stage unexplained) – by attending an interview. From here on the story becomes a hugely imaginative, funny and compelling adventure. Magic and mystery flow thick and fast from this point on – as Amari takes her chances to prove herself and to start finding out what happened to her brother. The story takes you through the development of some close and lasting friendships, against some awful magical bullies and monsters, to an exciting and nail-biting adventurous conclusion, though it leaves a possible opening for more books about Amari in future. A wonderful fun adventure addition to every child's bookshelf and any school library looking for more representation across all it’s genres.
A prize-winning picture book author and illustrator, Nadia Shireen is just as skilful at writing junior fiction, as this inventive, hilarious story shows. Fox siblings Nancy (the tough one) and Ted (the sensitive one) are forced to flee the big city for the countryside after Ted accidentally bites off pussycat boss Princess Buttons’ tail. Grimwood, where they find themselves, is a kind of paradise it seems, full of friendly if eccentric animal residents who love nothing better than a good game of treebonk. Ted feels right at home, Nancy needs convincing, but when Princess Buttons arrives, bent on revenge and armed with a Brain Zapper 3000, and their new friends step up to help, she changes her mind. It’s gloriously silly but still totally credible and a proper page turner, while Nancy and Ted are real characters. Watch out for the wonderful asides from woodlouse Eric Dynamite, and Princess Buttons’ comeuppance is an absolute treat!
Inspired by the true story of a Chinese dancer, Yin Jianling’s The Visible Sounds is a unique, magical, affecting story of a little girl who finds a new world, and a remarkable new talent for dancing, after losing her hearing. At two-years-old, MiLi’s world falls silent due to an illness doctors can’t fix, but it’s not long before she realises that sound can be felt, touched and seen through understanding and interpreting vibrations and movement in the world. This realisation is expressed through a lyrical cornucopia of the senses: “sound is a warm wind gently brushing against cheeks and softening one’s heart…Language is a river, flowing and flooding into MiLi’s body. The river turns into musical notes, like little tadpoles swimming into MiLi’s heart.” Though pitched at young readers, the style has a piercing clarity that speaks just as well to older readers (and adults), and Yu Rong’s illustrations - blending stark, graphic style (the use of colour is exceptional) with detail - is the perfect partner for the text. Moreover, it’s sure to spread a glow of joy through children facing - and living with - disability, while also evoking empathy in those who are not.
Written by Tracey Turner and Andrew Donkin in consultation with British Museum experts, A History of the World in 25 Cities is a wonderful concept that’s been dazzlingly executed through exquisite design as Libby Vander Ploeg’s luminously detailed illustrations draw the eye and spark the mind. Presented as a large format hardback, and resplendent with a striking neon cover, this mighty feat takes young readers on a magnificent journey around the world’s most fascinating cities, offering an exhilarating window into history and humankind. “Cities are full of possibilities. They are where big ideas are born, because they welcome people from far and wide.” So explains the lively, thought-provoking introduction before readers are welcomed to embark on a thrilling voyage of discovery through 25 cities, among them Jericho in 8500 BCE, ancient Athens and Rome, rain-forested Benin in the 1500s, seventeenth-century Delhi, eighteenth-century Paris, 1930s New York, and modern-day Tokyo. Each city is presented with fabulous maps and a feast of fascinating facts, with the book rounding off with a look ahead to cities of tomorrow. What a glorious gift-that-keeps-giving this will make for 7+-year-olds who are keen to learn more about the world.
Testing friends’ and family members’ knowledge of birds, animals and insects is great fun with this clever riddle book, created by the team at National Geographic Kids. Pages of ‘What am I?’ questions are followed by pages with the answers, each illustrated with attractive colour photos of the relevant animals. The questions are intriguing, designed to get you thinking logically alongside those that are calling up remembered facts. Once thing’s for certain, you’ll learn lots of interesting information about lots of very different animals. Oh, and if you’re thinking about C*******s presents, this is definitely worth putting on a list!
Paul’s life changes in totally unexpected ways when he discovers a little ghost living in the keyhole of his front door. The two quickly become friends and no wonder, Zippel the ghost is irresistible – funny, mischievous and thoroughly well-meaning, if totally baffled by modern life (he’s particularly fascinated by the flush on the toilet). Together they have some excellent adventures, Zippel getting up to all sorts of tricks in an old castle and taking ingenious revenge on a couple of bullies who’ve been tormenting Paul. Full colour illustrations by Axel Scheffler perfectly capture the droll humour of the stories and this is one of the most enjoyable books I’ve read this year. Buy a copy and don’t be surprised if you find readers checking out keyholes in the hope of finding their own Zippel.
Interest Age 8+ Reading Age 8 | What a super introduction to Shakespeare and his play The Tempest. The story tells of a group of school children who are on a ferry to perform the play in a festival in Italy. If you know the Tempest, you can probably guess that their ferry capsizes, and the group are shipwrecked. The drama then unfolds! Half of the actors wash up on the beach, the other half and their teacher, Mr Fortune (or not so fortunate) are missing. The characters identities are set out in the first chapter, where the reader is introduced to the confident bossy leader, the shy, but intelligent boy, the thinker, and the clown. What is clever, is that if you know the play, the characters resemble those in Shakespeare’s play, but if you don’t, it in no way detracts from the enjoyment of the story. The story is lively and fast paced, but still manages to include some lovely description and colour, such as ‘the unspooling music like golden ribbon’ heard by the children. It is also quite humorous with some lively banter between the group. For those readers who like things explained, and everything rounded up, the final chapter brings all the plots and characters together in true Shakespearean fashion. All is revealed, the poor unfortunate Caliban, why there is a desert island just off the coast of Dover, and why the group were split up! The book is of a good length for all levels of reader and printed on dyslexic friendly paper. I look forward to Hurly-Burly (Macbeth in disguise!).
The Christie and Agatha Detective Agency | What a great book, obviously the start of a fun series. The two main characters, children called Agatha and Christie; one inquisitive and practical, the other quiet and academic, but with the closeness and affinity of twins. The story revolves around a tea party where penicillin (mould juice) is hidden in a sandwich as an experiment, but who is it that takes the sandwich? As the plot unfolds, various interesting characters are introduced, such as Arthur Conon Doyle, the famous writer, and Alexander Fleming the famous scientist. The book is a very clever mixture of fact and fantasy with all the loose ends cleverly resolved at the end. Even Hercule Poirot is hinted at with a passing comment by the Belgian neighbour referring to using ‘one’s little grey cells’ There is a sufficient mixture of humour and mystery to make it very readable. It reminded me of the film ‘Young Sherlock’ that gives you the background/childhood of Sherlock Holmes. The historical references and explanations at the end are well written and would I think spark a child’s imagination and interest to go on and find out more about the author Conon Doyle and the history of penicillin.
A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month August 2021 | An inspiring and original book which encourages all readers to think like an artist and to think what it might be like to be an artist. Fittingly, through very visually creative illustrations and only a brief text, John introduces himself as an artist and then describes what that means. He thinks big about art as he looks at how art may be defined, the many different forms in which it may be created, where ideas for creating it can come from and simply but very perceptively, how difficult it can be to create. A book to inspire and savour.
Rabbit and Bear: Book 5 | Rabbit and Bear are back with another helping of adventure, humour and wisdom. Rabbit thinks Wolf is the most dangerous animal in the valley and with Bear’s help, sends him away. But something even bigger arrives, and it’s a lot meaner. Within minutes of strolling into their valley, the enormous Icebear has proclaimed himself king and taken Bear’s house for himself, declaring the other animals ‘food that no-one has bothered to eat’. What can they do? Even Bear is stumped when her usual methods of using kindness and friendship don’t work. Fortunately, Wolf knows just how to organise the animals into an effective fighting force. Every page brings something funny and insightful and the wintery woods look gorgeous in Jim Field’s illustrations. With its irresistible cast of characters and unforced messages of community and caring, this series is well on its way to becoming a classic. Superb.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to fly? Or to live high in the tree tops? Or perhaps you've wondered what birds do when no one is looking? Birds have some of the most extraordinary - and peculiar - behaviours on the planet. Ravens love PLAYING games. In winter, they sledge down snow-covered rooftops on their bellies, getting faster and faster. Partridges are SNEAKY and know just how to trick hungry foxes. And honeyguides are HELPFUL. They help humans to find the sweetest treat in the forest - honey. These are just some of the incredible stories you'll read in this book. With fascinating factual detail and playful storytelling from ornithologist Tim Birkhead and vibrant, personality-filled illustrations from Cat Rayner, this book captures what it's really like to be a bird.
After a horrible dream, NAME 1(Child) feels that only a cuddle from NAME 2(Adult) will make things better. However, the cuddle isn’t quite enough, even when ALL the family join in. As it bursts out of their door, how far will this cuddle eventually stretch and will it make a difference? And could it become the LONGEST cuddle in the world??! “[Name 1] and [Name 2] and the Longest Cuddle in the World” is a beautiful, rhyming personalised book for 2 for ages 0-99. After a tough year of Covid separations, it's a touching story about how a cuddle can make all the difference to our fears and unite us all over the world. It is Tickled Moon’s 5th personalised book to date and the story has been uniquely written to be personalised throughout for a Child and Adult (or older Sibling). It also includes the names of 5 (or more) Family Members, the Child’s Teacher/Hero and their Hometown. And you can add a personal Dedication too. “The Longest Cuddle” is priced at £19.95 for a Softcover and £24.95 for a Hardcover and is available on Tickled Moon’s website. There you can preview the whole book with your personalisations and listen to the story read by the author, Alison Reddihough.
The Sherlock Holmes classic is adapted into a version for young readers here and in a way that catches all the intrigue, drama and atmosphere of the original. Short though it is, all the details and clues are there – the legend of the terrifying hound, the mystery of the stolen boots, the strange lights flashing across the moor at night. Doctor Watson’s narrative is as vigorous as it is in Conan Doyle’s novels, his no-nonsense attitude heightening the thrill of the various spooky goings-on, and Holmes is the same enigmatic figure too. Black and white illustrations punctuate the story nicely and this is both an excellent introduction to these timeless stories and enthralling reading in its own right. Publisher Sweet Cherry have adapted lots more of the Sherlock Holmes stories for young readers which is great, as having read this they will undoubtedly be hungry for more.
Following the success of children’s picture books Leap, Hare, Leap! and Swim, Shark, Swim!, Dom Conlon and Anastasia Izlesou tackle another natural phenomenon – the wind. As Dom writes: ‘Chase Wind through the oceans, fields and mountains as, from zephyr to gale, she carries seeds and stirs seas, enriching the world and breathing life’. Dom and Anastasia guide the reader through the journey of one gust of wind using rich poetic language and amazing illustrations. Blow, Wind, Blow! shows children how wind affects almost every aspect of our daily lives, moving windmills in Holland to irrigate land and crops, flying kites in Paris, sailing boats in the Pacific, creating sandstorms in Chad and Sudan and hurricanes in Florida before settling back down to the gusts we encounter at home.
This is the first story in a series about two children, Ellie and Blake, who can speak to and understand animals due to a magical telephone they find in the empty rooms of a house that the two families have just moved into. This first book introduces the characters, both animal and human, and the adventure starts. The book is written in chapters and is very visual. It is quite a fast-paced story, with Ellie and her mum’s circumstances described in just a couple of paragraphs. The divorce, the change of town and employment all take second place to the main plot. Ellie’s mother wants to open a café on the ground floor, and obviously mice on the premises is not going to be a positive addition, or part of her plan. Unlike many other children’s books that have talking animals, these animals are feisty and tough and not the sweet and docile cats and mice that are so often depicted. The idea of a biting mouse and a full-scale riot of protesting mice is quite graphic (and not for the mice haters of this world. In fact, it made me feel quite squeamish!) It is interesting how the author depicts the mice and the puppy in quite different ways; the mice being intelligent and controlling and the little Labrador puppy Choccy, being just a rather dim youngster. The main problem in the story is whose house is it and how are the new humans and cats going to co-exist? However, in the closing chapter, a new problem arises, a property developer and his daughter appear on the scene and with the possible redevelopment of their street and the threat of competition to the new cat café across the road, the plot thickens. The book finishes on a cliff hanger, with Shazza the homesick cockatoo being the next book in the series. Books that involve animals, especially talking ones is always a winner, and this story, written in a lively and descriptive fashion, will, I am sure, be well received. The layout of the story is clear and inviting with lots of detailed and amusing illustrations. The sentences are well structured with age-appropriate plot and vocabulary. I think this will be a popular read.
What if words got stuck in the back of your mouth whenever you tried to speak? After a day of being unable to speak when asked, and of being stared at, a boy and his father go to the river for some quiet time. It's just a bad speech day, says Dad. But the boy can't stop thinking about all the eyes watching his lips twisting and twirling. When his father points to the river bubbling, churning, whirling and crashing, the boy finds a way to think about how he speaks. Even the river stutters. Like him. I talk like a river, he says. An incredibly moving picture book that offers understanding rather than a solution, and which will resonate with all readers, young and old. Masterfully illustrated by Sydney Smith, winner of the Kate Greenaway Medal.
‘Eudora Space Kid: The Great Engine Room Takeover’ by David Horn is an exciting space adventure with Math and Science at its heart. Eudora loves maths and science and is always wanting to use them to engineer new and exciting things on her home space-ship, Athena. Alongside the adventures (and trouble) that Eudora gets into while experimenting on the Athena, the story also focuses on honesty and responsibility. I think this is an entertaining space adventure that would appeal to 7-9 year olds. I liked that the main character of this STEM led story is a girl and I think these types of stories will help young girls reading them to feel more confident about being interested in maths and science. This is the first of a new series. I think young readers will find it entertaining and will enjoy the conversational and highly descriptive writing as well as the friendly and appealing illustrations. ‘Eudora Space Kid’ is the beginning of a fun sci-fi adventure series that will have wide appeal to younger readers. Charlotte Walker, A LoveReading4Kids Ambassador
Book Band: Brown- (Ideal for ages 7+) | This is a lovely retelling of a famous myth. It tells the story of Icarus and his father who are prisoners on the island of Crete. Although it is set in Ancient Greece, the relationship and obvious love of the father and son shine through in quite a modern way. Both characters have their frustrations over their plight, yet they are both sensitive to the feelings of the other. It is a good adventure story where the two characters deal with setbacks in their quest for freedom – their attempts at boat building and their construction of the birds’ wings. Unlike many books for young children there is a sad ending which somehow makes it more poignant. There are lots of things to discuss in this book with some useful questions in the ‘quiz time’ at the back. I think the book would also benefit from a simple map to show where Crete is and also a guide to how to pronounce the characters names. Daedalus and Pasiphae are challenging for the adult too! A super book and a great introduction into Greek Mythology
All brilliant picturebooks rely upon the interplay between words and pictures and this partnership of author and illustrator has very good form. Indeed, the acclaimed A Place to Call Home has a similar theme about discovering the world beyond, but in Ergo Deacon and Schwarz have produced a sublime and joyful mix of text, art and clever typography, which will stimulate endless discussion and read aloud requests. While not being at all a book about the COVID crisis, I think that this adds additional resonance for children (and adults) who can easily recall the time when they were literally shut inside. It also speaks to the universal self-absorption of young children and babies. Like them, the first discoveries Ergo makes are of herself. Her feet! Her wings! A demonstration of the principle that consciousness defines existence - I think therefore I am, as Descartes told us. But then Ergo discovers the boundaries of her world and enjoys pushing against these and making her world move and then her astonishment is unbound when she feels movement and noise from outside! The recognition that there may be other creatures like her and the sad thought that they might be forever separated is what spurs her determination to break out and achieve the joyful meeting with fellow fledgelings. What a perfect allegory for recognising that we all need other people and that there is a wonderful world out there if you are brave enough to explore. A perfect introduction to philosophy with the most apposite title ever- not only a word that means therefore, but one which sounds perfectly eggy too! An absolute must have for classrooms and homes.
From the team which brought you the critically acclaimed If All the World Were… we have an inspirational story about finding your voice, both literally and metaphorically. The lyrical text and expressive images capture the intense anxiety of the shy protagonist who never speaks in school and also the transformative power of a good teacher. The illustrations show us the colour, vivacity and joy which Miss Flotsam brings to the classroom and the creativity which she inspires. Getting the child engaged in responding to poetry is the first step into unlocking her feelings and revealing what she needs to say. Gradually and cleverly building confidence and ensuring a nurturing atmosphere in the classroom, Miss Flotsam supports the child until she is ready to read her words aloud. The visual representation of creativity is so well done and is a perfect match for the carefully considered words. This lovely story has a powerful message of resilience, courage and determination and will encourage all children to unlock their potential.
A curious girl is eager to explore the new activity in her home. ‘Naji and the Mystery of the Dig’ by Vahid Imani is a lovely story of an inquisitive and imaginative Naji, eager to learn more about the giant hole that’s being dug in the courtyard of her family home. This is a very eventful day for Naji and her family, with plenty of tasks and chores to be done. But all Naji wants to do is learn more about the hole that’s being dug outside. Switching from curiosity to fear of monsters and Looloo, mythical creatures that lay in wait to snatch away children, Naji’s duty takes us through her day to day life at her home in the Iranian capital city of Tehran, and her speculation about what can be found in the murky depths of the washing pool or the new hole that’s being dug. I loved all of the cultural details throughout the book, young readers may be able to see themselves represented by Naji and her family, and the story provides insight into the daily practices of Islam and details about Iranian culture. Naji is universally lovable, displaying a curiosity, fear of the unknown and love of the ice cream man that all children will be able to identify with. In all, a really nice story driven by a young girl's curiosity and imagination. Charlotte Walker, A LoveReading4Kids Ambassador
A heart-warming and magical story of a very special relationship between a child and a polar bear which will inspire readers of all ages to realise that they, like April, can make a difference in the battle against climate change. When animal loving April arrives on Bear Island in the Arctic Circle where she will live for the next six months while her father runs the scientific operations she is told that, despite the island’s name, there are no bears on it. The melting ice caps mean that the polar bears can no longer arrive from the nearest mainland near Svalbard. But April soon finds out that there is one bear left. And April needs to do everything she can to keep him alive. Confident of her ability to communicate with the bear and to feed him, April nourishes the bear and even plans his return to safety. Beautifully illustrated by Levi Pinfold, The Last Bear invites readers to care about the science behind the fate of an endangered species and to believe in one girl’s magical solution to the problem. **The images and illustrations in this extract are subject to copyright © Levi Pinfold and may not be used without permission.
October 2021 Book of the Month | When ship’s surgeon Gulliver sets off across the seas in search of adventure he has little idea what he will find. His two greatest discoveries are the countries of Lilliput and Brobdingnag. In Lilliput he finds a population of tiny people to whom he appears as a giant while in Brobdingnag the roles are reversed: Gulliver is tiny and Brobdingnags are giants. Swift uses Gulliver’s descriptions of his experiences in these contrasting countries to write a satirical commentary on his own society. His use of Gulliver’s altered relative size gives great scope for studying everyday events in a new way and makes a fine vantage point for telling the contrasting stories. Gulliver is an iconic figure in literature. Read aloud, this abridged edition with is impressionistic yet detailed illustrations by Robert Ingpen will make an excellent way to introduce the story about him to young readers.
October 2021 Book of the Month | Michael Morpugo’s Kensuke’s Kingdom is just one of the very many stories for adults and children alike that have been inspired by Daniel Defoe’s classic shipwreck story. Written over 300 years ago, the story of Robinson Crusoe, an impulsive young man who runs away to sea against the best efforts of his parents to stop him, is packed full of gripping action as Crusoe survives the worst the elements throw at him before he is shipwrecked on an apparently uninhabited island. The story of Crusoe’s life on an island is a lyrical study of a place as well as an inspiring story of one man’s resourcefulness. In this adapted edition award-winning illustrator Robert Inkpen’s illustrations bring Daniel Defoe’s classic story to life in timeless images.
Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant and dyslexic readers aged 7+ | Dotted with knock knock jokes and including an hilarious bit of involuntary roller skating, this little book will have young readers smiling. Anna Liza wants to be a psychiatrist like her mum, after all, she says, a job where you can make sad people happy again must be the best job in the world. Unknown to her mum, she’s set up a practice in the waiting room which is where she meets Edward. Edward’s sad because his daddy is sad, and Anna Liza is determined to help. Her unorthodox approach – it’s where the roller skating comes in – certainly does the trick. Lots of children will know an adult who is unhappy like Edward’s dad, and this amusing story touches lightly on the subject of depression while reminding us all of the things that make life worth living. For more gently, funny treatments of depression for children, see Brilliant by Roddy Doyle and Aubrey and the Terrible Yoot by Horatio Clare.
Have you ever wondered how a forest gets started? With huge trees growing up close and dense undergrowth covering the ground, their scale is so mighty that it is hard to think that they could ever have been small. Are they man made? Did an enormous giant or a massive business enterprise put them there? In a gentle and elegant story matched by simple, evocative illustrations Who Makes a Forest? helps children explore the multi-faceted ecosystem that sustains the many forests that cover so much of the earth’s surface. From the soil, made from the decay left by tiny clinging plants such as lichen and the insects that feed on them, through the first flowers that grow in that soil and the butterflies and bees and birds that feed off them to the massive trees and shrubs that we see today all stages of forest growth are covered. The book ends with 5 pages of useful facts about forests.
Can a wombat offer us life lessons on kindness? Can we possibly learn bravery from the meekest of hedgehogs? The answers to these questions and many others can be found in the pages of this remarkable, beautifully-illustrated book, as we look to the natural world to show us humans the way. Roar Like a Lion is full of advice from the animal kingdom, from the plucky platypus to the welcoming wombat, the perceptive pigeon to the cheerful chimpanzee. Carlie’s writing is effortlessly engaging and inspiring, and Katie’s stylish colour illustrations complete a stunning package that can make a real difference in children’s lives. Roar Like a Lion sparkles with wit, wisdom and warmth.
Who’s to blame when things go wrong? Dogs Norman and Ringo realise that they are the Blamehounds when they get told off for everything from farts to an unexpected splat of peach juice. But then they come up with a plan! Soon the Blamehounds along with other dogs are making a small fortune through a few backhanders just by taking the blame humans want to avoid. Ross Collins captures the joke perfectly in words and pictures. Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant and dyslexic readers aged 7+
Hal’s cheesy nightmares have become impossible and he is determined to find out why. With his fat dog Rufus, Hal goes on the hunt to find out and finds himself having to deal with some very disagreeable cows indeed. Told by Ross Collins in words and pictures this is a hugely entertaining and original story. Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant and dyslexic readers aged 7+.
Eric and Terry Fan are renowned author illustrators with such gems as The Night Gardener and the Kate Greenaway shortlisted Ocean Meets Sky. For this collaboration they have been joined by brother Devin for the first time. Stunningly beautiful images are what we have come to expect, and this is no exception. The enticing, mysterious cover spotlights a little creature in a bell jar. Beneath the jacket the cover looks like a blackboard covered with code, double helixes and creature sketches. The endpapers are design files to start and shelves of completed products at the end. We know then that this is about creating things. We meet our little creature again and we are shown the contrast between the naturalistic wold and an ordinary shop – Perfect Pets- on an ordinary street, but far below there is an underground world and a laboratory where they make the perfect pets and where they put the Failed Projects like Barnabus. Alerted of impending recycling doom, by his friend Patrick the cockroach, who has been entrancing him with stories of the natural world above, Barnabus and fellow Failed Projects work together on a daring and thrilling escape and find refuge hiding in plain sight in a nearby park. Being a team and supporting each other is crucial to their success. A multi-layered story that will appeal to a wide range of ages and prompt much discussion and debate about ethics and freedom. In a world where young people are constantly bombarded with social media that promotes artificial standards of perfection, this empowering fable has an important message to share.
Ebenezer Tweezer is a youthful 511-year-old. He keeps a beast in the attic of his mansion, who he feeds all manner of things (including performing monkeys, his pet cat and the occasional cactus) and in return the beast vomits out presents for Ebenezer, as well as potions which keep him young and beautiful. But the beast grows ever greedier, and soon only a nice, juicy child will do. So when Ebenezer encounters orphan Bethany, it seems like (everlasting) life will go on as normal. But Bethany is not your average orphan . . .
Getting lost in a book is one of the great delights of childhood.
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