Holiday Reads

Each time I read a new book over the two week Easter holidays, I’m going to add to this post. Although I tweet a lot about new books, I don’t always blog about them, so this is my chance to share with you all!

This is the second graphic novel starring Frankie, who is newly diagnosed as autistic. In this instalment, Frankie is struggling to find her confidence after moving up to secondary school. But when a local Battle of the Bands contest is advertised, she knows this is her opportunity!

A great read for anyone aged 9+

In the first Wildsmith adventure, Rowan & her mum flee war in their home town to stay with Rowan’s grandfather. That’s why she discovers her strange connection with animals. This stands her in good stead when her father smuggles a pegasus out of the war-town city to be cared for in the woods. However, it’s a dangerous task and someone close cannot be trusted…

A great magical adventure series for developing readers aged 7+

Miles loves nothing better than climbing trees and adventuring with his best friend. But grumpy old neighbour Mr Buxton always seems to want to spoil their fun. When Miles discovers a tired, lost budgie, he discovers another side to his neighbour.

One of the great accessible Little Gems series from Barrington Stoke. For anyone with a reading age of 5+

A great board book full of flaps to explore. Visit different habitats and guess what’s inside the eggs. Count the creatures on your way! Beautiful illustrations and lots of fun.

Another board book which is perfect to welcome in the (hopefully) brighter Spring months. Visit the farm and learn all about the creatures you might mind living there. Lots of sliders to encourage interaction and build fine motor skills.

I had heard a lot of good things about this book and I was not disappointed. It centres around teenager Jack, who has recently lost his father. Finding his grief hard to manage, Jack starts to get himself into trouble. When his environmental anthropologist mum suggests a trip to the rainforest, it’s not the relaxing holiday he was expecting… A wonderful exploration of grief, loss, and the deforestation crisis facing the rainforest.

I’d recommend this for readers aged 10+

Lily and Tom travel the country with Ma Hawker, showcasing their collection of curio. A carved shell, a young maid, and a shadowy villain make for an adventure the pair will never forget. I always recommend Barrington Stoke titles for children who like short, snappy reads, not just those who would benefit from the dyslexia-friendly font. This one manages to be historical fiction, a mystery, and promote women’s rights all in one!

Reading age 8+, interest age 9+

Usually, Dick is the most delightful duck, but one day he wakes up and he is in a bad mood. All his friends what to try and help. But how?

This is a fantastic book for exploring the concept that everyone can have warm fuzzy feelings AND cold prickly feelings. It also showcases how true friends can act as ‘bucket-fillers’ and help make you feel better when you’re having a tough day. 5+

I travelled to parallel universes whilst Book Boy Jr hit the skatepark. This is shaping up to be a very interesting adventure where some individuals have the ability to step through portals in the fabric of time and space and hop into other dimensions which are similar but different. But at what cost? Twelve-year-old Elsbeth is about to find out as a strange boy appears and her mother mysteriously vanishes. 9+

After ‘What Happened to You?’ I was expecting this to be just as witty and insightful. And it was. It raised a lot of interesting questions about how some people view disabilities and why it is that people with disabilities often seem to be framed as ‘amazing’ or ‘tragic.’ I also loved how it captured Joe’s frustration and being dubbed ‘amazing’ for just doing normal things that actually some of his other friends could do better. 4+

Peter Bunzl is a marvellous writer so I was looking forward to reading his latest title for Barrington Stoke. Dragonracers is a super-snappy read about the birth of aviation, headstrong children, and dragons! Full of excitement with RA 8+ IA 9+

The third wildlife mystery from M.G. Leonard is here and this time the Twitchers are on the tail of some egg poachers. Precious peregrine falcon eggs have been stolen and the gang are determined to get to the bottom of it. This twisty-turny tail will keep readers guessing until the very end.

Today, I’ve been reading a great graphic novel about finding you own space in a household with seven children. Add in the complexities of being a tweenager and a potential house move across the country, and you have yourself quite a dilemma! Make sure you also redd ‘Allergic’ by the same pair. 9+

This morning I’ve been dipping into this beautiful collection of poetry as I sip my cup of tea. Written by the prize-winning @zaroweil, and illustrated by #JunliSong, the works are inspired by the power of nature & a visit to Kew Gardens. It also includes some suggested activities ideas devised by the CLPE (Centre for Literacy in Primary Education.)

Sweet Cherry Publishing do a fantastic range of adapted and illustrated classics. They’ve been specially created to introduce new readers to key characters, themes and plot lines in an accessible manner. Today, I read their edition of Twelve Years a Slave by Solomon Northrup – which came with a QR code to scan for a free audiobook version.

This exquisite picture book follows two siblings as they travel the long & difficult road to a place of safety. But first they have to avoid the monsters & NEVER get caught. This would be excellent for starting conversations about conflict & war. And how it might feel to be a refugee and be forced to leave your home.

I’d heard a lot of good things about this book so thought I’d better get on with reading it! So far, it’s turning out to be a pretty fast-paced adventure full of twists and turns, with a world for ‘remarkables’ (humans with special powers or magical creatures) existing in parallel with the regular human world of ‘unremarkables.’Great for readers aged 9+

The ‘Diary of Pig’ series features the most charming Pig you’ll ever meet and some truly Evil Chickens. It is now available in glorious colour! A very funny series for readers aged 7+ Read a full review HERE.

I’ve found it very difficult to track down many picture books about football. This one is such a lovely, inclusive book about why so many people love playing & watching football – it doesn’t matter who you are or where you come from; football is for everyone! #LetsPlayFootball

I’ve finally paid a visit to #MrWolfsClass and I can see why this graphic novel series is loved by children across the land. Full of wonderful moments and an eclectic mix of characters, I’m looking forward to reading more of Year Four’s adventures. #AronNelsSteinke

For those of you who, like me, have The Very Hungry Caterpillar memorised from many repeat readings, you’ll be pleased to know there are now several new titles in the #VHC world. Including this new story where readers head off to the jungle with lots of interactive elements to help build fine motor skills and the ability to focus on a text. 🐛#EricCarle

RoyalAnimals an Illustrated History by #JuliaGolding, illustr. by #EmilySutton is a fascinating look back at the British Royals’ long-standing connections with animals. From bears hunting in the Thames, to parrots in the palace – all are explored in this glorious book.

Mystery abound? Don’t worry; Kate’s on the Case in another highly-illustrated chapter book for newly confident readers. Such a fantastic series and definitely recommended for readers aged 7+

This fascinating book is an absolute must-have for any dog lovers out there. A comprehensive tour of dashing doggies around the world with in-depth profiles and care tips. I’m showcasing the #vizsla in honour of Hugo (my furry nephew! @hugo.thewild)

I am a huge fan of Jess’s writing so was delighted to get an early read of her newest title. It didn’t disappoint – full of action, peril, and a strong message about animal rights and environmental activism. The first-person diary format puts the reader right at the centre of the action. 9+

This is a beautiful picture book about a young boy Asian who learns to love his eyes when he realises they are just like the other men’s in his family. A story of self-acceptance & love.

This is one of my most anticipated reads of 2023. If you haven’t already read ‘The Last Bear,’ make sure you get yourself a copy before diving into April and Bear’s second adventure. Just as wild, free, and full of heart as its predecessor. Absolutely stunning! 9+

The Factopia series is such a brilliant concept – Book Boy Jr and I had lots of fun following the trails of mind-boggling facts, as the leapt over pages and backwards & forwards – you never quite know where you’ll end up! Great fun and very interactive.

*Huge thanks to all the wonderful publishers who send me these titles to review*

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