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A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month August 2020 | Penny, the notorious dog-napper, has a host of dogs already but there is one very special dog she is determined to get her hands on. Quick, clever, a master of disguise and very good at problem solving, he is the dog she wants. And he is covered in spots so should be easy to find. Penny’s assistant Pat sets out to find the dog. Can the dog-nappers catch their prize or will they be outwitted by the super-smart dog? Emma Lazell’s energetic and vivid illustrations inject this simple story with great energy.
There are lots of things Bear loves, and he tells us all about them in this charming picture book. From playing with friends, to reading with Daddy, to wearing his underpants on his head (surely to be a favourite image with readers!), all is described through a jolly rhyming text and accompanying lively illustrations. Even when he’s giving in to the naughty little voice in his ear and playing tricks, Bear still looks cute as a button, like any toddler. This will be a lovely book for grown-ups and children to share, with so many scenes and activities they’ll recognise.
A breathtaking story of bravery, friendship and fighting for what you believe in, Umbrella Mouse to the Rescue is the eagerly anticipated sequel to Anna Fargher's bestselling and award-winning The Umbrella Mouse, based on the true stories of the heroic animals caught in the conflict of WWII.
This awesome, rawsome, rhyming picture book chomps through gender stereotypes with wit, vitality and a whole lot of dinosaur dynamism – it’s a cautionary tale with swashbuckling twists in its T. Rex tail. And the message? Boys – beware of mansplaining dinosaurs to girls. “Dinos are for boys,” claims Ed, Maisy’s less than enlightened brother as he refuses to share his toys with her. But Maisy knows that’s simply not true. And besides, she doesn’t even need Ed’s toys because she knows T. Rex’s sister, who’s big, bright and every bit as fierce as boy dinosaurs. “My dinosaurs are mean, for sure/And boy, oh boy, can these girls ROAR!” she asserts with convincing glee as Deborah Allwright’s pounce-off-the-page illustrations depict a range of rollicking, roaring, rock ‘n’ rolling dinosaurs in gargantuan glory. As Maisy’s passion gathers apace, so Ed asserts his expertise on the matter, resulting in an uproarious down-to-earth-with-a-bump ending, and an excellent final twist. For more books with girl-power take a look at Work It Girl - Inspiring and Informative Books on Feminism for All Ages
Absolutely fabulous lemurs fly through the air across bold, brightly coloured pages in this exuberant picture book! The littlest lemur worries that he’s not actually good at jumping, but his family remind him of all his talents – which allows for hilarious pictures of him playing the recorder upside down and throwing custard pies – and he’s encouraged to complete an amazing jump. It’s a very funny and reassuring story carried brilliantly through Zehra Hick’s stylish and lively illustrations. Apparently she created them using bamboo, and there’s certainly a wild and jubilant abandon to it all that will transmit to readers. Delightful! ~ Andrea Reece
May 2018 Debut of the Month | A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month May 2018 | A wonderfully warm-hearted animal adventure based on Zeb Soanes observation of a local urban fox. Waking up hungry one evening, Gaspard sets out to find something to eat. Luckily, he quickly makes two new friends - Peter a rather cool cat and Finty a frisky dog who has dug a way out of his garden so that he can roam the streets without an owner. Helped by his new friends Gaspard secures himself a delicious meal and returns happy and FULL. The three friends and their adventure and the urban landscape of the setting are all perfectly captured in James Mayhew’s illustrations.
1892, New Mexico. A wolfpack roams the Currumpaw Valley, preying on the cattle and evading capture by the exasperated local ranchmen. Due to his knowledge of wolf behaviour, a British naturalist by the name of Ernest Thompson Seton is employed to hunt down their notorious pack leader, king Lobo…
Beautifully written, The Unnamed Beast is a story of courage, friendship, strength and hope. When a fire breaks out, and starts to destroy the Wood, the unnamed beast is upset to see his beloved home on fire, but when he finds out from a Badger, that it's a dragon, he thinks it's his fault, and he is responsible for the destruction, after being told this isn't so, and so he decided to confront the Dragon and put a stop to it, as he starts on his journey, he meets other creatures of the wood, and friendships to start to form. I found this book had a touch of Roald Dahl, Dr Seuss and Julia Donaldson. Throughout, the story was enriched with illustrations and I think that The Unnamed Beast could easily become a children's classic. The story was told beautifully with the use of rhyme and I can see that it will have the readers smiling and children laughing as they follow the unnamed beast on his journey. Angela Rhodes, A LoveReading4Kids Ambassador
April 2014 Debut of the Month - Winner of The Times/Chicken House Children's Fiction Competition 2013 Set some 17000 years ago where tribes fought tribes and rubbed shoulders with sabre-tooth cats and mammoths, there was danger at every turn, yet this is a terrifically compelling adventure story starring a 13 year old boy called Wild Horse and a girl from another tribe who doesn't want to be found. Wild Horse wants to prove hiself to his tribe and he sees this as his chance to show off his skill and bravery. Fighting with spear, tooth and claw to survive, can he live to tell the tale? Fans of Michelle Paver's Chronicles of Ancient Darkness which began with Wolf Brother, will devour Wendy Constance's brilliant and award-winning debut novel, almost in a sitting. On announcing The Times/Chicken House competition winner, The Times said Wendy E. Constance, this year's winner, still can't quite believe her triumph. "I keep pinching myself," she laughs. "I've gone from 'ordinary Wendy' to extraordinary Wendy' overnight."The Times/Chicken House prize for an unpublished new children's author is unique in that each year it picks raw talent from about 1,000 submissions, and then works with the five shortlisted authors. It has a stellar track record. Sophia Bennett's 2009 winner Threads is being developed as a series by Nickleodeon; Janet Foxley's Muncle Trogg is going to be a film from Sony Pictures Animation; last years winner, Fletcher Moss, has had The Poison Boy sold pre-publication to the US, Germany and Holland. All six previous winners have seen their work transformed. Now Constance, and her novel Brave, will have their chance. You can download the entire article here - please note the book title was changed to Brave from the original name, Like a Brother. In addition to our Lovereading4kids expert opinion for Brave a small number of our 'Kids Reader Review Panel' were lucky enough to be invited to read and review this title. Here's a taster....'you will be transported back in time to a world of mammoths, sabretooths and nomadic tribes! A gripping plot with two fantastic main characters.' Sabrina Tadjerout. Scroll down to read more ... A Piece of Passion from Barry Cunningham, Publisher, Chicken House Wendy Constance brilliantly rips us back in time to a world of the super-tough, where young and old alike survive or get eaten by something very scary. Here, sabretooth cats rub hairy shoulders with mammoths – but actually, in the end, a bit of kindness goes much further than our brave-hearted boy and skilful girl can ever have imagined. And I’m going to try that recipe for snake kebabs myself . . .
In a nutshell: satisfying and exciting story of a dog’s life | This short novel tells the story of golden retriever Bailey, from his days as a puppy up to maturity. When he runs away from his first home he’s lucky to be rescued from a hot locked car by a woman who gives him to her son, Ethan. Before long Ethan and Bailey are as close as only child and dog can be and we come to know both of them really well, though Ethan’s behaviour will always make more sense to human readers than it does to Bailey. A rivalry with another young man leads to a violent and shocking conclusion when Bailey’s love for his owner proves life-saving twice over. Like all the best animal stories this dog’s eye view of the world is completely convincing and will enthral readers. ~ Andrea Reece
In a nutshell: satisfying and exciting story of a rescue dog’s life | In this short novel, children get a dog’s eye view of the world as the story is narrated by rescue dog Ellie, from first days as a puppy through her special training to her career finding missing people - those who have got lost, one who has been kidnapped, and most dramatically one she saves after an earthquake. It makes for a fascinating story and Ellie’s voice is completely convincing: we understand, though she doesn’t, why her first owner Jakob cries at his wife’s grave; she makes us feel her contempt for cats! An excellent animal story this will thoroughly appeal to readers of classics such as The Incredible Journey as well as more recent stories such as Shadow by Michael Morpurgo. ~ Andrea Reece
A heart-warming story perfect for early readers about a lost kitten searching for somewhere to call home. There are lots of Early Reader titles to choose from that are great for sharing with your youngsters and for kids just starting out on the reading journey to read alone. Check out the extracts on the site as some of the titles are slightly more advanced than others - for example the Francesca Simon animal story titles set at Potters Barn are great to get started on whereas the Sally Gardner, Georgie Adams and Vivian French titles have a bit more text to each page. Each and every one of them though has full colour illustrations on every page.
Pony mad Katy is growing in confidence and ambition. Despite changes at Barton Farm and losing both her best-friend and her knowledgeable aunt, Katy is determined to train her pony Trifle to be a champion. It’s a much harder task than she bargains for. Can Katy succeeed? As ever, deep passion and knowledge infuse this gripping story which vividly creates the pony world. Adopt an Exmoor Pony: Want the chance to adopt an Exmoor pony at the Exmoor Pony Centre for one year? All you have to do is email firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject heading 'Exmoor Pony' and one lucky winner will win a year's pony sponsorship. Closing date for entry is 1st September 2012.
How Katy discovers a newborn Exmoor foal on her birthday and persuades her family that she can look after it launches a tender and convincing story of one girl’s passion for ponies. Victoria Eveleigh gives enough details of pony care and training to make the story essential reading for all those who are pony-mad and enough delightful general background about friends, family and farming to make it an enjoyable story for all. Adopt an Exmoor Pony: Want the chance to adopt an Exmoor pony at the Exmoor Pony Centre for one year? All you have to do is email email@example.com with the subject heading 'Exmoor Pony' and one lucky winner will win a year's pony sponsorship. Closing date for entry is 1st September 2012.
All the magic of owning a pony is brilliantly captured in this last delightful story about Katy and her Exmoor pony Trifle. Together, Katy and her pony overcome challenges and achieve great success before Trifle comes up with a very great surprise for Katy! Full of excitement, this story is also packed full of important details for all pony mad readers.
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