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We have collated what we think are some of the best Super-Readable titles all of which are also dyslexia friendly for interest age 7+. They are all specifically written to help readers who have visual stress and for dyslexic readers to enjoy.
Interest Age 8+ Reading Age 8 | Sports Day has arrived at Wigley Primary and everyone is excited to take part in unusual events like book balancing, frisbee tossing and seeing who can race in the most layers of clothes! Of course Noodle the doodle is desperate to join in all the fun, but when he gets a new partner-in-crime, Daniel the spaniel, are the canine capers going to spiral out of control or can Noodle win the day ...? Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant or dyslexic readers aged 8+
Interest Age 7-12 Reading Age 8 | I knew I was going to like this book from the inscription… To all kids who are so well behaved who are SO good at always doing the right thing…that no one notices them. This is a wonderfully dramatic book based on the perfect pupil Beth, who is convinced she will again be the winner for the best-behaved pupil at the oncoming prize giving. However, the temptation is too great when she finds the headmaster’s diary with the prize winners written inside and is horrified to find she has not won at all. From then on, she is no longer Miss Perfect and her life is completely changed. This is where the author weaves in the plot and characters of Macbeth in a humorous and clever way. Beth, like Macbeth, realized almost too late in her case, that villainy comes at a price. For those familiar with the play there are clever links throughout, from the titles of the chapters to the various references such as the red ink spot on Beth’s hand, her inability to sleep, and the final twist - winning is all. What is so clever is that the story flows beautifully without any knowledge of the bard and is just as entertaining and readable. Indeed, the messages of loyalty and trust to one’s friends and the importance of being honest with yourself are important messages at any level. It is a super story and will sit happily on my shelf next to my copy of Tripwrecked which was equally enjoyable. Going back to the initial inscription, it is so true and you see it all the time in school, those that get noticed are the naughty, the bright, and those struggling. The middlemen, who coast along without causing any problems, behavioural or academic, are often quietly overlooked. It was nice to see this highlighted and recognised. Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant and dyslexic readers aged 7+
Interest Age 8+ Reading Age 8 | Navigating family tragedy and finding the freedom to follow your dreams, Eve Ainsworth’s All to Play For is a perfectly-pitched, top of the league triumph for readers who enjoy the thrilling possibilities of dreaming big through stories rooted in real-life. Lewis’ “happy place” is the narrow strip of grass at the back of his estate. Here he can “pretend to be somebody else”, like his football hero scoring a winner for England at Wembley. Lewis needs this escape because real life is tough. His family don’t have much money and, “even if she could afford it, Mum would never let him play football. Not after what happened to his dad”. Tragically, Lewis’ father died when his weak heart failed during a match, and his mum blames the beautiful game for taking her beautiful husband. After being spotted by Ash, a scout for his dad’s former team, Lewis is faced with a dilemma - training with the club would mean disobeying Mum, so he tries to convince her to let him join. Tackling grief and social inequalities with sensitivity, All to Play For is a rewarding read, with all the heart-in-your-mouth tension of a penalty shoot-out. Readers will be on the edge of their seats willing Lewis to succeed, willing his mum to support his dream. Published by Barrington Stoke, this is especially ideal for reluctant readers, with satisfying short chapters and dyslexia-friendly paper.
Reading Age 8 Interest Age 8+ | Morwenna’s family have owned the funeral parlour in Carregton Crow for as long as anyone can remember. It’s Morwenna’s job to accompany her father as he sails the coffins of the dead out to the island cemetery, and to help with burials and care for the graves. As with any place on the edge of the sea, stories and legends abound, including tales of tide singers, mysterious sea people with the power to control the waves. When a strange girl is found washed up, Morwenna cares for her, in the face of village prejudice, and as a result, a miracle happens. The sound and taste of the sea roll through this story, wild, strange and powerful, the strength of a storm matched by Morwenna’s quiet kindness and compassion. An unforgettable story.
Interest Age 8+ Reading Age 8 | Gill Lewis’ stories connect young readers with the countryside and wild animals as the very best nature writing does, inspiring them to discover more of the outdoors and to stand up for the environment. In Song of the River, Cari is reluctantly beginning a new life with her mother following the tragic death of her father. They have moved away from the city to a cottage next to a river where her mum opens a café. When a flood destroys their home, the resilience of the tiny water voles on the riverbank inspires Cari to see things differently, and a proposal to reintroduce beavers to the area convinces her that the future can be different. The more she finds out about the scheme, the more involved she becomes, finding new strength as well as a place in the community. The story weaves together personal loss and recovery into a story with a message for us all. Simply told, the impact will be long-lasting.
Interest Age 8-12 Reading Age 7 | Tanya Landman’s new story is a dream-come-true adventure that will thrill young horse lovers. Meg lives for her weekly riding lessons and dreams of owning a pony, though she knows that her parents could never afford the cost. I was in exactly that situation as a child and there’ll be many thousands of young girls (and maybe some boys) who’ll identify with Meg too, all of them longing for a pony of their own, all aware it will never happen. Imagine the vicarious pleasure to be had in Meg’s story then for, on her tenth birthday, she wakes up to find a pony standing in her front garden. The two immediately form a bond, and even though Merlin turns out to have an owner, a kind of miracle happens that means Meg can ride him whenever she wants. Landman catches Meg’s emotions beautifully, from the passion of her daydreams to the joy of finding Merlin, and the crashing despair at the thought of having to say goodbye. She describes Merlin’s reactions to Meg perfectly too, making this a very special girl-meets-pony story. This is number one in a series and I for one can’t wait for the next.
Interest Age 8+ Reading Age 8 | Bess has left the London workhouse behind for a job at a rural cotton mill. But life at the mill is hard and cruel- a far cry from the fresh start Bess hoped for. The only way to survive is to escape, but the mill is like a prison with no way out. Meanwhile, rumours are spreading about a vicious creature that lurks in the millpond. Bess is sure it's all nonsense, until one night she sees something stir in the murky water. But is it really a monster that lives in the depths of the pond? Or a creature trapped and alone, just like Bess, desperate to escape ...
This text has been set in Dyslexie, a typeface specially designed for people with dyslexia | This latest addition to the innovative The Questioneers series by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts is a wonderful story that’s sure to inspire young readers who are trying to find their voice and express themselves, especially dyslexic children for whom reading and spelling might be a struggle. The eponymous Aaron Slater Illustrator of this beautiful rhyming picture book is based on Aaron Douglas, the African American painter, muralist, and graphic artist. Often hailed as the father of Black American art, and a key part of the Harlem Renaissance movement, the book follows Aaron from the age of four, when he discovers a love of stories and decides to create his own. Though frustrated by his struggle with reading (“the words are just squiggles, and try as he might, even with help Aaron can’t get it right”), Aaron discovers the magic of telling stories through images, and begins to conjure fabulous art - art that can “make a difference” and help him “discover what he wants to say.” What an engagingly-told tale, with David Roberts’ illustrations oozing style, charming detail and all the art-as-story-telling power that young Aaron is delighted to discover in the book.
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.
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+.
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