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All the books we feature on LoveReading4Kids are selected because we think they deserve to stand out from the crowd of the many thousands of other titles published each month.
August 2018 Book of the Month | In a Nutshell: Mystery and monsters that emerge from the mist | Alexander is apprentice to Professor Cordite, the kind of man who “meticulously calculated possibilities” and looked “more like a highway man than a university Professor”. They have offered their expertise to Bleakhope, a village beleaguered by frightening creatures that emerge from the fog. A pervasive mood of fear and foreboding is evoked from the outset, with the daring duo enduring a supernatural encounter even before they reach the village. And so this winding atmospheric tale twists and turns in unexpected directions, with the crisp, creeping sense of fear inviting some comparison with Joseph Delaney’s Spooks series. It’s a spine-chilling yarn, compact, yet teeming with untold terrors in classic gothic tradition. - Joanne Owen
March 2018 Book of the Month | Any young reader who enjoys funny, surprising, brilliantly inventive stories should check into The Nothing to See Here Hotel IMMEDIATELY. They’ll be welcomed by Frankie Banister, son of the owners and great-great-great-grandson of troll legend Regurgita Glump, who still lives on the hotel’s top floor. Frankie does a great job introducing the hotel and its bizarre assortment of magical guests and staff, including chef Nancy, the giant Orkney Brittle-Back spider, and Ooof the ogre doorman. The story takes off with the arrival of goblin prince Grogbah and his enormous entourage. He’s a very difficult guest, and is Granny right when she decides he’s up to something sneakerish? The plot zips along like the best-oiled luggage trolley and Butler and Lenton make readers feel completely at home in the extraordinary world they’ve created. A 5* reading experience and the first in a new series to boot. Children of 7 to 9 are being really well-served by authors at the moment, and those who enjoy this book will also love the Amelia Fang series and Kaye Umansky’s Witch for a Week.
March 2018 Book of the Month | A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month March 2018 A story of friendship and empathy, of escape and return, or teamwork and reconciliation, this picture book is thoughtful and moving, and features some hugely appealing characters. Oliver and Ruby and little dog Patch love going to the zoo, and make special friends with a baby rescue penguin, Peep. They can tell he misses his old home and friends, and when he goes missing they immediately set out to find him. It’s not easy, and they have to learn to work together before the little runaway is returned to a warm welcome from the other penguins. Claire Freedman’s story provides lots to think about and Kate Hindley’s illustrations are full of warmth and energy, each page a treat (don’t miss the giant tortoise!). ~ Andrea Reece A wonderfully warm story about friendship as favourite characters Oliver and Patch together with their friend Ruby pay a visit to the Zoo. They love meeting all the animals! There are meerkats and tigers and they especially love the penguins. But when a little penguin goes missing the three friends soon find that there is more to visiting to zoo than just looking at the animals. A touching story with a satisfying resolution. ~ Julia Eccleshare Julia Eccleshare's Picks of the Month for March 2018 The Lotterys Plus One by Emma Donoghue King Coo by Adam Stower Splish, Splash, Ducky! by Lucy Cousins We Are Not Frogs! (Little Gems) by Michael Morpurgo The Sorry Tale of Fox and Bear by Margrete Lamond Song of the Dolphin Boy by Elizabeth Laird What Do People Do All Day? (50th anniversary edition) by Richard Scarry Bird House by Libby Walden Bug Hotel by Libby Walden Alone Together by Clayton Junior The Lost Penguin by Claire Freedman
February 2018 Book of the Month | In a nutshell: Rafe Khatchadorian heads down under In this special episode of the hugely popular Middle School series, Rafe Khatchadorian, surely everyone’s favourite reformed troublemaker, has won a special art competition, first prize an all-expenses paid trip to Australia. Rafe isn’t sure he wants to go – he’s worried about snakes, sharks and all those other deadly indigenous creatures – but Australia isn’t ready for Rafe either: by the end of the book he and his mum, who accompanies him, are facing down an angry mob waving pitchforks. Finding out just what leads up to this is very funny indeed and readers will be pleased to hear that Rafe still returns home something of a hero. Kids everywhere will identify with Rafe, and especially those who just can’t help attracting trouble; he’s a very special hero, and Patterson’s narrative technique means the pages turn almost by themselves. ~ Andrea Reece
February 2018 Book of the Month | In a nutshell: an evacuee story as imagined by the one and only Jacqueline Wilson Queen of contemporary fiction, Jacqueline Wilson is now setting her stories in the past, but they’re not one bit less lively, immediate or relevant to young people for that. For her 106th book she’s chosen to write a story of evacuees. Shirley is a bit of a misfit, a daydreamer, which irritates her mum, happiest with imaginary friends. Awkward and shy, she’s one of the last evacuees from her school to be adopted and is finally forced on a wealthy elderly lady and her housekeeper together with two boys similarly rejected. The arrival of the three youngsters shakes up the household, and what follows is vintage Wilson, full of incident and adroitly described relationships, and with an emotional and dramatic urgency that will keep readers turning the pages compulsively until the eventual happy ending. Nick Sharratt’s illustrations are as funny and heart-rending as the text. ~ Andrea Reece
February 2018 Book of the Month | In a nutshell: well-written, enthralling magical adventure The age-old theme of good versus evil is given a lively reworking in Celine Kiernan’s new series. When her father is kidnapped by witches, her mother sets out with Mup, her brother and dog, plus the ghost of Aunty Boo to fetch him back. The world they enter is a dangerous one, ruled by a tyrannical queen using spies and informers – the raggedy witches – to enforce her cruel, arbitrary rules. There’s a shock for Mup who discovers the queen is actually her grandmother, and that she too has magic powers. The story bristles with excitement and adventure while allowing space for friendships to form, and for humour too (Mup’s baby brother is transformed into a puppy, much to his delight). Well-written, this is a thoroughly enjoyable and satisfying story. Firmly in the tradition of classic tales of magic such as Narnia, and with hints of Tolkien and Susan Cooper too, readers would also enjoy Peter F. Hamilton’s The Queen of Dreams series. ~ Andrea Reece
February 2018 Book of the Month | In a nutshell: joyful story of a boy and his dancing feet Hari lives in a biggish city in India with his sister and aunt. He’s always cheerful and enjoys helping support them all delivering tiffin boxes for the nearby take-away and running his own sweet-making business. He spends some of the proceeds on tickets to the cinema and particularly likes musicals. When he accidentally stumbles onto a real film set, his special talent is suddenly revealed: when Hari dances, everyone has to join in. It makes him a local celebrity then, with the help of his friend Mr Ram, Hari uses his gift to spread happiness further afield. The story is as tempting and delicious as Hari’s coconut barfi, and its engaging narrator will have readers almost convinced it’s a true story; the world would certainly be a better place if it was. ~ Andrea Reece Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant or dyslexic readers aged 8+. Barrington Stoke is the foremost publisher of dyslexia friendly books and those for reluctant readers. Here on Lovereading4kids we are constantly selecting new titles and refreshing our special dyslexia friendly category. Click here to view our current selection which is broken down by age range.
February 2018 Picture Book of the Month All lions are fierce, right? Well, maybe, just maybe, this Lion – so well dressed and polite and charming – isn't too fierce for you... Polly Dunbar returns with her wonderfully expressive illustrations and a tale that is simply a delight to read aloud. You may know her as the author-illustrator of the much loved Tilly and Friends series as well as other wonderful titles such as Penguin. Children will adore following the jaunty, ever so polite Lion as he asks to come to tea but whose manners firmly escape him when it comes to pudding. A Lion is a Lion is about standing up to the things that scare you but also accepting that sometimes a Lion is a Lion and that no matter how fancy or polite he may be would happily eat you up if he got the chance. ~ Shelley Fallows - You can also find Shelley here.
February 2018 Book of the Month | A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month February 2018 | A stunning book that is also an invaluable introduction to how to look at the world around us. Nicola Davies invites readers to look at the flowers, the birds, the insects, the fishes and more in habitats of all kinds around the world. She shows the value of individual groups and also the importance of the how all aspects of nature are interconnected. Emily Sutton’s beautiful illustrations bring the natural world sharply into focus making it both delightful and accessible. ~ Julia Eccleshare Julia Eccleshare's Picks of the Month for February 2018 Kevin by Rob Biddulph My Name is Victoria by Lucy Worsley Lots: The Diversity of Life by Nicola Davies A Busy Day for Birds by Lucy Cousins Words and Your Heart by Kate Jane Neal The Iron Man by Ted Hughes Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney and Anita Jeram No More Kissing by Emma Chichester Clark
March 2018 Book of the Month | Rose and her dog Banjo are heading off for a day of adventures flying Rose’s kite. Rose’s bright red boots splash through streams, crunch through leaves and chase Banjo as he runs up and down the hillside. With no parent or adult in sight it’s a celebration of play and a chance for little children to enjoy a vicarious bit of freedom and independence. Watercolour illustrations create a warm and recognisable world and it ends on a cosy note with Rose and Banjo safely home for tea. Written in verse that will soon have young readers joining in this is fun to read aloud and the story allows for all sorts of conversations and discussions. ~ Andrea Reece
January 2018 Book of the Month In a nutshell: thoroughly charming mini-mysteries in school and family setting It’s no mystery why the Dot McCluskey stories are so popular: Dot is a wonderfully lively central character and her friendly direct-to-reader narratives put them at the centre of her busy world. Dot and best friend Beans like nothing better than solving mysteries and there are two in her new adventure: the mystery of a missing card and the mystery of Dot’s birthday party – just what is her mum planning? Dot’s warm, loving home life is beautifully described and her school day is just as recognisable and as fun. With Clara Vulliamy’s own black and white illustrations complementing the text this is a joy, and perfect for newly independent readers. ~ Andrea Reece Fans of Dot’s adventures will also enjoy Wendy Quill’s escapades, as described by Wendy Meddour. Publisher, Ruth Alltimes says: “Dot is destined to be the new ‘book-best-friend’ of young girls everywhere; she is impishly funny, aspirational and so full of curiosity that girl readers will be drawn into her world of mini mysteries! Clara Vulliamy's signature stylish, witty artwork creates an irresistible young fiction package.”
Winner of the UKLA 2018 Book Award | January 2018 Book of the Month | Sarah Crossan and Brian Conaghan are two of our most garlanded YA authors: she won the 2016 Carnegie Medal, the UK’s top children’s book award; he has just been awarded the 2016 Costa Children’s Book Award. In this fine and extremely moving novel, they share the writing honours. The narrative is split between two young protagonists, English Jess, whose lines are written by Crossan, and Nicu, newly arrived from Romania, voiced by Conaghan. The two meet on a programme for young offenders and secretly, necessarily without the knowledge of friends and family, become close. We suspect it’s unlikely things will end well for these star-cross’d lovers but the authors keep us hoping for the happy ending we want for them and to the very last page. Nicu’s narrative in particular lightens the tone, sharp and often funny, his interior monologues disarmingly honest. The authors have chosen to write in blank verse, and it strips setting and emotions to the absolute essence, succinctly creating the dull North London streets, and distilling the characters’ experiences and emotions into spare, shining lines. Highly recommended.
At LoveReading4kids we’re passionate about all the books we feature.
All the books we feature on LoveReading4Kids are selected because we think they deserve to stand out from the crowd of the many thousands of other titles published each month. However, sometimes in a month, we wish to give that little bit more emphasis to a title or titles and to make it a 'Book of the Month' within its age range.
You’ll find those titles here in our Books of the Month page.
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