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Find the latest books for fans of fantasy stories and magical tales! We have extracts to download for most of our books plus expert reviews.
March 2018 Debut of the Month | In a nutshell: magic, ghosts, a brave and stubborn heroine | Twister is named after the storm that raged the night she was born, and she grows up fierce, stubborn, a true force of nature. She needs to be too: her beloved Pa has disappeared, leaving Twister heart-broken, her mother almost destroyed. Twister’s search for her pa takes her into real danger: she encounters ghosts and the dead, harnesses black magic, while in the real world she becomes the target for a violent and damaged classmate. Set in a beautifully described world of mountains, forests and open meadows (the US?), Twister’s connection to the land is a comfort and strength, no matter how hard the trials she faces. Powerful, and absorbing, this is one of a kind. One to recommend to fans of Frances Hardinge’s equally brave and tested heroines. ~ Andrea Reece
Martin Sloan steps off the beaten path, looking for redemption on his journey home but steps into the Twilight Zone and a journey of a lifetime. Brilliantly conceived, the graphic novels in this series capture the TV drama of an iconic and cult classic TV show – The Twilight Zone - from the 1950s. Set in a world that is like our own but has another dimension, each book is a highly dramatic adventure powerfully told in striking visual images matched by a text that has been adapted from Rod Serling’s original scripts – in their entirety.
Shortlisted for the 2009 Penguin Orange Readers' Group Book of the Year. Deeply seductive and irresistibly compelling, this is an extraordinary love story that will stay with you long after you’ve finished it. It’s the first in the Twilight series and is a captivating sage of vampire romance. The 2nd is New Moon, the third is Eclipse and the fourth, Breaking Dawn make this a truly must-read series.
April 2018 Debut of the Month | An ambitious and atmospheric fantasy adventure in which an eleven-year-old girl discovers an uncanny world following the disappearance of her dad. Kay’s curious quest begins one Christmas Eve when she, her sister and mum go to collect her dad from working late at his Cambridge college. Eerily, no one knows who he is - not the porters who see him every day, and not the academic now occupying his office. Stranger still is the calling card Kay discovers on her pillow. Who are Will O. de Wisp and Phillip R. T. Gibbet? And how did this card for their removals business find its way into her room? Kay meets these strangers that very same night, and learns that they have “removed” her father. What this means, why, and where to is a mystery, but Kay is determined to discover the truth, along with the truth as to why she can see these wraiths, when humans are not generally able to. This lyrical debut boasts something of the fantastical dreaminess and classic adventuring conjured by the likes of Michael Ende and Cornelia Funke, yet the plot here unfolds in an all together more ethereal manner, with feelings and atmospheres evoked in painterly detail, and the plot progressing at an unhurried pace. Indeed, this not a book to race through. The poetic style invites utter absorption, a suspension of time, and, for that reason it comes recommended for readers who like to savour language, and suspend belief.
Joint winner of the Richard and Judy 9+ "Confident" category. Tunnels is a spectacular subterranean adventure that will have your eyes glued to every word as you travel underground with a 14 year old boy whose passion is digging. Part history, part adventure, part mystery, part sci-fi, part family drama Tunnels is one of the most imaginative pieces of fiction I’ve read for a long while. So, to all 10+ year olds who want a book to blow your mind - get digging. The sequel Deeper is currently now available. This title is also availabe as in audio CD. Publisher comment:The authors first published this book themselves, putting all their effort, hope and cash into a wonderful piece of imagination. Then word of this great book spread to me – but it had sold out! Finally, I tracked one down, and we dug deeper into their dark and mysterious world to bring you a new, extended adventure. And Tunnels was born! I’ve always loved the idea of a mysterious underground world, so close you can dig down into it…but I never imagined it would be this strange.
First published in 1975, this extraordinary story of the friendship between the gentle Tuck family and ten-year-old Winnie feels older than its years, but also of our age, in the magical way true classics do. The story is enthrallingly set-up by juxtaposing three apparently unconnected happenings during the “strange and breathless days” of a hot August. As the Prologue states, and as things turn out, “things can come together in strange ways.” Dissatisfied at home, Winnie longs to do “something that would make some kind of difference in the world.” Certain this will never happen “if I stay in here like this,” she explores her family’s wood and chances upon a “glorious” boy who stops Winnie in her tracks, and warns her against drinking from a spring. Winnie meets the boy’s family - the Tucks - and discovers a “big, dangerous secret” that must ever be revealed if their way of life is to be preserved, if the equilibrium of humanity is to be maintained, for the spring seems to have granted the Tucks everlasting life. In their company, in their warm-hearted, higgledy-piggledy home, Winnie “discovered the wings she’d always wished she had”. For their part, the Tucks say she’s the best thing that’s happened to them in “at least eighty years.” Then, when a yellow-suited stranger seeks to disrupt the Tuck’s lives, Winnie bravely leaps on her opportunity to make a difference. Dazzlingly written (how about this for a description of sunset? “The sun was dropping fast now, a soft, red sliding egg yolk”), this is a wondrously wise story. Take Tuck’s remarks about the nature of life and death: “You can’t have living without dying. So you can’t call it living, what we got. We just are, we just be, like rocks beside the road.” With a bittersweet ending that brings tears to the eyes and warmth to the soul, I couldn’t love this book more. It’s that rare kind of tale that speaks of all things, to all ages.
A truly wonderful kick of escapism, ‘Truckers: The First Book of the Nomes’ may be aimed at children, however you don't have to be a kid to read this (adults can get just as much enjoyment, possibly even a little more). These books are also known as the ‘The Bromeliad Trilogy’, the reason for which will become abundantly clear as you read further into the trilogy. Masklin, Grimma and their rapidly diminishing band of four inch high Nomes (they aren't shrinking in height, but numbers) leave their home in order to survive. They find themselves in a department store, among Nomes who no longer recognise that there are outsiders, or even an outside. When they discover that the department store is closing down and being knocked down, can they persuade the rest of the Nomes that they need to leave? Terry Pratchett has the ability to make words sing together, in such a way, that they make you stop and think. He may excel in fantasy, yet it’s fantasy firmly based in fact, and it’s fantasy that makes you look at life from a new perspective. ‘Truckers’ is eye opening, laugh inducing and sometimes jaw dropping stuff and I absolutely loved it. ~ Liz Robinson
Strange things are happening in the magical world of Troll Fell and the security that Peer has grown to know and love begins to look very shaky. Who has broken into Bjorn and Kersten’s house and caused such chaos and why is the mill wheel turning? Trolls are on the loose and there may be no stopping them. Rich and imaginative story telling.
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. Shortlisted for the 2012 Carnegie Medal. The Judges said: A vivid and emotionally powerful story told through some great switches of authentic narrative voice, giving the perfect marriage of character and plot as the three children tell their stories. Though there are scenes that are visceral and shocking, humour is always present too, along with a strong sense of community and the sustaining nature of friendship. Shortlisted for the prestigious Sheffield Children's Book Award 2011. Headlong and heart-stopping, this is an adventure you just can’t put down. From the squalor of a rubbish dump to the grandeur of some of the finest houses in the city, this is a thrilling adventure. Three boys who live on a dump and spend their lives sorting rubbish find something so precious, so valuable and so wanted by someone else that their whole lives are turned upside down. How can they keep their find – and themselves safe? From the pathos of deprivation to the hope of a miracle this is a story full of emotion as well as vivid drama.
This dragon pack is a collector’s delight and will give all budding dragonologists all the knowledge they need to get out on the trail of their favourite beasts from catching, tracking and taming techniques to dragon habitats. It also comes with a foil embellished mobile complete with flapping wings. Why not take a look at other dragonology titles such as Dragonology, Dragon's Eye, Working with Dragons, Field Guide To Dragons?
Inventive and imaginative, this pack is fun to read and make. It introduces the elusive Frost Dragon, a little known species among some more familiar names. Acquiring knowledge of this curious creature is fun while the additional model pack gives scope for great creativity as well.
This is the eagerly anticipated sequel to the international bestseller Fallen, a novel that set fans of gothic romance alight when it was published on both sides of the Atlantic. Like Fallen, Torment is the sort of book you’ll pick up and not put down until it’s finished. It’s a gothic love story featuring angels, forbidden love and mysterious past lives that threaten everything that Lucinda and Daniel hold dear. Guaranteed to thrill and delight in equal measure.
Winner of the 1958 CILIP Carnegie Medal | Francesca Simon, Guest Editor February 2021: "I first read Philippa Pearce’s Tom's Midnight Garden as an adult, staying up all night to finish it, and sobbing at the end. It’s about Tom, sent away to relatives while his brother is sick, who discovers that when the grandfather clock strikes 13 that the modern world disappears and he is transported back to the magnificent Victorian garden which once existed at the back, and meets Hatty, the girl who once lived there. I envy anyone reading this book for the first time." ......................................... This is one of the most touching and magical children’s books I’ve ever read and it’s one that’s stayed as fresh in my mind as if I’d just read it yesterday. Tom’s imaginary garden is beautifully portrayed and the characters and situations within are richly satisfying and the poignancy of the moments are cherished. Children will love the story and it is as relevant now as it was some 40 years ago when it was first published.
Winner of the 1958 CILIP Carnegie Medal | 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 is the girl? Can she really be the old woman in Tom’s waking life? This is one of the most touching and magical children’s books I’ve ever read and it’s one that’s stayed as fresh in my mind as if I’d just read it yesterday. Tom’s imaginary garden is beautifully portrayed and the characters and situations within are richly satisfying and the poignancy of the moments are cherished. Children will love the story and it is as relevant now as it was some 20 years ago when it was first published. (9-11 key age range)
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