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Longlisted for the UKLA Book Awards 2020 | Another insightful and compassionate free verse novel from the queen of this increasingly admired form, this time exploring the transformative relationship between an abused runaway teenager and an elderly lady with dementia. Allison has grown up “stepping on eggshells” to circumvent her father’s violence. While she often wonders whether his behaviour was “all my fault”, one of his outbursts compels her to run away. With nowhere to go, she finds sanctuary in the house of an elderly woman called Marla. Marla has dementia and thinks Allison is Toffee, her best friend from childhood. After spending some time in Marla’s company, Allison decides to “stop correcting her… I like the idea of being sweet and hard, a girl with a name for people to chew on.” Moreover, in meeting Marla, Allison has found an unlikely kindred spirit: “I am not who I say I am. Marla isn’t who she thinks she is… Here, in this house, I am so much happier than I have ever been”. Returning the favour, Allison enriches Marla’s life – she listens, she indulges Marla’s desire to dance - while Marla’s carer and son show no real regard for her happiness, as if she’s beyond life, which makes Allison’s attentiveness all the more heart warming. Both vulnerable, they find strength through each other. With incredibly moving insight, Marla says of Allison’s dad, “none of it was about you. It was about him. It’s always about him. Surely you know that.” The writing is compellingly fluid, flowing freely between Allison’s precarious present and the tragic, abusive circumstances that sent her careering down this path. While fleeting, the impact of their time together is monumental, and I felt privileged to have spent time in their company.
Encompassing works from ancient sages, classic poets, well-known thinkers and emerging contemporary innovators from all walks of life, this involving, inclusive collection inspires, entertains, enthrals and emboldens. Alongside enjoying the work of widely-esteemed names (including Sappho, George Eliot, Sylvia Plath, Carol Ann Duffy, Jackie Kay, Christina Rosetti, Maya Angelou, Emily Dickinson and Margaret Atwood), it was a pleasure to discover contemporary poets whose work I shall seek out, among them Ruth Awola and Remi Graves, and lesser-known names from the past, for example Edith Södergran and Astrid Hjertenaes Andersen. If the diversity of voices is rich, so too are the themes, with growing up, friendship, love, nature, body image and protest covered in staggering depth and diversity. This varied chorus of bold, incisive voices makes for a collection to be savoured and shared.
A lovely, lively and varied collection of verse that invites gleeful participation from its intended audience. 16 poems to read out loud - perfect for sharing at home or at school. Shortlisted for the CLPE Children’s Poetry Award (CLiPPA) 2017. Longlisted for the UKLA 2017 Book Award.
Shortlisted for the CLPE Children’s Poetry Award (CLiPPA) 2017 Lewis Carroll's Alice has been enchanting children for 150 years. Curious Alice, the bossy White Rabbit, the formidable Queen of Hearts and the Mad Hatter are among the best-loved, most iconic literary creations of all time.
Featuring a selection of rhymes for the very young adapted from Michael Rosen and Chris Riddell’s award-winning A Great Big Cuddle, Wiggly Wiggly is a tour de force of catchy rhythms and bouncy beats, cheerful pictures and cheeky characters. Each of the nine rhymes are made to be read aloud, made to encourage the very littlest to join in with the sounds, the words, the actions (wriggling, bouncing, sloshing, finger walking). The verses will hold their appeal no matter how many times you have to read them (hundreds), while the draughtsmanship and vitality of Chris Riddell’s illustrations takes the breath away with each turn of the page. They’re never too young for poetry and this is an absolute nursery must-have.
Shortlisted for the Centre for Literacy in Primary Poetry Award 2018 | Get ready to join in the Poetry Olympics, question a snake, talk to a toad and learn 20 ways to avoid monsters and mythical beasts. Where Zebras Go will lead you leads you on a magical journey across the savannah, into fairytale realms, back into the playground and through the seasons, introducing a whole host of animals along the way. An exciting debut collection from an up-and-coming poet, covering wide-ranging themes with humour and fun.
Shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal 2014 - Winner of the English Association 2013 Prize (Fiction 7-11) September 2012 MEGA Book of the Month.Best-selling author Michael Morpurgo’s touching story of a young girl’s exploration of the countryside provides a lyrical link for this rich and varied collection of poems about the countryside which have been selected by Michael Morpurgo and his wife Clare. Following the story provides a path and introduction to each; they can also be readily appreciated by dipping in and finding familiar and unfamiliar gems. Beautifully produced, the illustrations throughout the book capture the changing seasons and changing moods of the countryside in what becomes, overall, a glorious celebration.
Shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal 2014 - Winner of the English Association 2013 Prize (Fiction 7-11) Best-selling author Michael Morpurgo’s touching story of a young girl’s exploration of the countryside provides a lyrical link for this rich and varied collection of poems about the countryside which have been selected by Michael Morpurgo and his wife Clare.Following the story provides a path and introduction to each; they can also be readily appreciated by dipping in and finding familiar and unfamiliar gems. Beautifully produced, the illustrations throughout the book capture the changing seasons and changing moods of the countryside in what becomes, overall, a glorious celebration. Stop press... Michael will be appearing at the Cheltenham Festival on Sunday 11th October. Click here to find out more. Further information from the Cheltenham Festival.
This engaging first poetry book is absolutely the best one for the very very young. It celebrates all those things closest to a young child’s heart from food and family to animals and play. Gervase Phinn has written a corker and the illustrations by Jane Eccles complement the words so well.
Wide- ranging and thoughtful, this anthology of poems by award-winning poets Roger Stevens and Brian Moses captures the many different aspects of war. Divided into three sections the first of which focuses on different aspects of World War 1, the second on World War 2 and the third on more recent wars such as the Vietnam war and the current war on terror. Though their poems Roger Stevens and Brian Moses convey the powerful range of emotions which swirl around all those taking part while also considering the impact of conflicts of all kinds on the lives of everyone even if they are only on the edges of the experience.
Winner of 2015 CLPE Poetry Award - the only award in the UK for published children's poetry | An exciting debut poetry collection from an exciting new voice. The collection includes a wide range of poems, from funny and fantastical to spooky and spellbinding. Find out the mysterious rules of Werewolf Club, how to look like a rainbow, what happens when puppies fall in love - and how to fold up your gran! To see Joseph Coelho perform some of the poems go to his website.