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Find out what other people are getting excited about reading next. The books here are the ones that our members and browsers have selected and read about in the last 7 days. As it changes daily it is well worth coming back on a regular basis to check it out.
Longlisted for the UKLA Book Awards 2020 | August 2018 Book of the Month | A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month August 2018 | | A thought-provoking and touching story of the bond between children and nature, from renowned storyteller and award-winning author Gill Lewis. Award-winning Gill Lewis is renowned for her skilful capturing of the healing power of human/ animal friendships and the importance of nature to all – and especially to children who grow up without much chance to explore it. Searching for a secret place where they can practise their skateboarding, Izzy and Asha discover the perfect spot – the site of an abandoned gas works. But they are not the first to find it. The gas works site is also home to a wounded wolf. Knowing that they must keep its existence a secret the girls take care of the wolf and, in doing so, become involved in keeping the patch of wasteland safe from developers. It is a heartwarming story with a deep theme written in a highly readable way. Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant or dyslexic readers aged 8+
If you liked Marcus Sedgwick's The Raven Mysteries, you'll love this ! Gruesome and scarily witty, this is the spooky story of Stitch Head, a lonely almost-human creature made by a mad professor in the sinister Castle Grotesque. Almost lost and forgotten, Stitch Head’s life is turned upside down when Fulbert Freakfinder’s Travelling Circus rolls into his home town of Grubbers Nubbin. After that, nothing is ever quite the same again... Click here to visit the Stitch Head website.
One of our Books of the Year 2014 The classic story of Paddington Bear, so called because the Brown family first meet him on Paddington Station and decide to take him home. Paddington Bear has travelled all the way from Darkest Peru with a label round his neck that reads: “Please Look After This Bear”. Paddington Bear is a most delightful companion but he is not exactly house-trained and having him living with them brings the Browns all sorts of adventures. Stephen Fry reads the accompanying CD brilliantly.
July 2020 Non-Fiction Book of the Month | In this important new resource, author Cerrie Burnell has put together a fascinating collection of inspiring stories. As she says in her introduction when she was growing up as a child born with just one hand “there just weren’t enough books with a disabled protagonist” and “Everyone deserves to see someone like them in a story and achieving something great” Her own achievements are themselves inspirational and she has long been a disability rights campaigner as well as much loved CBeebies presenter and children’s author and so the whole book is infused with authenticity and passion. A double page spread for each of the 34 role models and two special sections on mental health and “invisible disabilities” are all evocatively illustrated by comic artist and graphic designer, Lauren Baldo capturing the time and spirit of the featured individual and giving real context to the highly readable and fascinating life stories. Starting in 1770 with Beethoven and finishing in 2001 with the birth of black, transgender disabled model superstar Aaron Philip, the life stories are commendably international and wide ranging, challenging our preconceived ideas of what is possible. From the familiar Helen Keller and Stevie Wonder to the less well known like break dancer Redouan Ait Chit, mountaineer Arunima Sinha, lawyer Catalina Devandas to celebrities like Lady Gaga,whose disability was a complete surprise to me, these stories will open eyes and minds. A comprehensive glossary and helpful discussion of language choices around disability and representation throughout add even more usefulness to this essential and attractive resource.
One of our Books of the Year 2015 | Cartoon-like illustrations fill this book which is packed with information about all things to do with space from machinery to suits to simple explanations of physics. Tricia Adams This book, with a Foreword by Tim Peake who in December 2015 became the first British astronaut to go to the International Space station, should go to the top of any must-have list for young children interested in space travel. It’s packed with fascinating information on everything from what to study to help you become an astronaut, to the special training astronauts undergo, rocket science and how shuttles get into space, and what it’s like to live on the International Space Station. Of course it explains how astronauts go to the loo, but the sections on what happens to human stomachs in space is just as icky and interesting! The information is very well presented, and despite the conversational tone there’s no talking down. After all, the children reading this book could become fully fledged astronauts in the 2030s. Inspiring stuff!
A 'time-slip' mystery adventure in which Stella (11) and Tom (8), when trying to find their elderly neighbour's missing dog, discover a tunnel and lake that take them back in time to their home 100 years in the past. Author Karen Inglis on what inspired The Secret Lake: "The Secret Lake was partly inspired by an apartment some friends moved to in Notting Hill many years ago when my children were younger. It backed on to the most fantastic communal garden that the little ones could get lost in safely – they had mini woods to play in and rhododendron bushes to hide inside. "I was really struck by the magical atmosphere for the children and began to wonder what it had been like for the children who had lived there 100 years earlier…. and then began to wonder what it would be like for the present-day children to meet the children from the past. "The secret lake element was inspired by ‘Still Pond’ up at Isabella Plantation in Richmond Park which is surrounded by the most beautiful Azaleas every May which all reflect in the water there. Isabella - once described by the FT as 'London's best kept secret park' - is a wonderful oasis that children love running around in and hiding behind bushes and inside tree trunks - it's a bit like the Notting Hill gardens… very special…and free to visit! We used to take our boys there when they were younger." Click here to visit the Secret Lake website, which includes games, a competition giveaway and lots more information about the book and the author. If you've enjoyed The Secret Lake, then check out the author's other story for 7+ year olds called Eeek.
Shortlisted for the UKLA Book Awards 2020 | Via simple but elegant illustrations, and a gentle sometimes playful rhyming text, this picture book passes on all sorts of information about water and its importance, while never losing the sense of the beauty of this essential element. Words and illustrations take us back in time to the beginning of life on Earth, up hills and deep below the surface to explain that “clouds, rain, river, sea, water cycles endlessly”. Carefully placed splashes of colour underscore pages of different blues, the tinkling rhythm of the text bringing a sense of calm. It all concludes with five fascinating facts about the “world wide wet” and this is a book to savour on lots of different levels.
July 2020 Debut of the Month | Melding the mystery of a parallel prehistoric world with real-life worries that seem too terrible to face, this emotionally-sensitive debut will enthral thoughtful, adventure-loving 8+ year-olds - think Stig of the Dump meets Wolf Brother meets A Monster Calls for younger readers. Right before the birth of his baby brother, Charlie discovers a deer tooth in Mandel Forest. He’s so thrilled, “a little shiver tingles like a breath across my shoulder blades”, and he strangely feels “the weight of someone watching me.” When his brother Dara is born with a heart problem, Charlie is gripped by anxiety. His poorly sibling reminds him of a featherless baby bird. His cry is “a horrible, thin squawk, birdlike too,” and Charlie is too scared to hold him, too scared to stick around in the hospital when the doctor arrives with the results of Dara’s tests. So, Charlie flees to the woods where he comes to the aid of a deerskin-clad boy. A lad named Hartboy who’s seeking his baby sister, just as Charlie fears he might lose his baby brother. It’s not long before Charlie realises that – somehow – he’s been transported back to the Stone Age. As he steps-up to help Hartboy, encountering wild beasts and a mysterious shadow man in woods that are at once familiar and strange to him, Charlie learns valuable life lessons that equip him for his return to the real world: “You can’t just avoid stuff forever, can you? No matter how sad it is.” Suffused in the wonders of nature and a timeless sense of myth, the adventure-spiked plot is perfectly punctuated by emotional breathers that allow Charlie to find courage, and a way home - back to his family, back to his beloved baby brother.
‘In her thirty-three years at NASA Katherine was a pioneer who broke the barriers of race and gender, showing generations of young people that everyone can excel in math and science, and reach for the stars’. That’s President Barack Obama on Katherine Johnson, his quote one of many contemporary sources that bring her extraordinary achievements to life in this concise but information-packed biography. The book covers Johnson’s life from childhood and early signs of her fierce intelligence through to the years at NASA where her calculations helped put Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin on the moon. It’s inspiring stuff, and the book is designed to appeal to a wide readership, with frequent illustrations, diagrams and information boxes. This is one of a number of titles in a well-thought-out new series. For further reading on this theme visit our special feature - 50th Anniversary of the Moon Landing.
July 2020 Book of the Month | They may be a family of hyenas, but if we were all like the Bolds the world would be a much better place. In case you don’t know, the Bolds live disguised as humans in Teddington. Their two children attend the local primary, and both parents work: Mr Bold writes cracker jokes, Mrs Bold designs extravagant hats. In this story, Mr Bold’s mother arrives from Africa for a visit, and struggles rather with her son’s new lifestyle choice. It looks like the family will be exposed, but the story takes a different turn, and once again the Bolds come to the aid of someone who needs their help. The story is deliciously bonkers, the illustrations just as witty and full of quirky detail, and the Bolds’ live-and-let-live philosophy is a breath of fresh air in our quarrelsome times. If you want everyone to go to sleep smiling and happy, make this your bedtime reading.
Our top 10 is based on page views, calculated over the previous 7 days and includes all books on the LoveReading4Kids site.
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