As children become more confident and independent readers, they often want a chapter book they are able to enjoy on their own, as well as a read-aloud. Stripes Publishing have an absolutely beautifully produced range which I am going to share with you now. The whole series is hardback with glossy pages and colour illustrations … Continue reading Gorgeous First Chapter Books from Stripes Publishing
Bravery and self-confidence are not things which come naturally to all children and are certainly emotions which can fluctuate over time. But both, I believe, are key to good mental health, over-coming barriers and being resilient. This lovely title from Wacky Bee’s ’Buzzy Reads’ series is a great introduction to these ideas for young children … Continue reading ‘Alfred and the Blue Whale,’ by Mina Lystad, illustrated by Åshlid Irgens.
I personally believe that as adults and educators, it’s imperative that we encourage our young people to develop and empathy for others and to understand some of the wider issues in the world around. Based on an award-winning poem of Rumble’s, ‘Mustafa’s Jumper’ would be an excellent choice to open up discussions about what it … Continue reading ‘Mustafa’s Jumper,’ by Coral Rumble, illustrated by Charlotte Cooke.
Paralympian and author, Ade Adepitan has added a new book to his super ‘Cyborg Cat’ series. This one’s a bit special because Ade and Piccadilly Press have pledged to donate all profits from the sale of this book to Children In Need! After facing starting at a new school and making new friends, Ade (aka … Continue reading ‘Cyborg Cat and the Night Spider,’ by Ade Adepitan, illustrated by Carl Pearce.
Lots of children love to be scared. If you happen to know one of them, they might just love one of these chilling chapter books suitable for readers aged 5+ ‘Isadora Moon Puts on a Show,’ by Harriet Muncaster (OUP) One of my favourite, glittery half-fairy, half-vampires is back in her tenth adventure. Isadora is … Continue reading Chilling Chapter Books…
I recently had a great time at the Oxford Reading Spree, hosted by Ed Finch at Larkrise Primary School. I had been invited to run a workshop about how and why to introduce ‘classic’ children’s literature in a primary school, based on my own experiences. I chose to share some of the texts and activities … Continue reading Introducing classic texts in a primary school (part 2): ‘Treasure Island’ as seen at the Oxford Reading Spree.
I am a huge fan of Chris Ridell’s work - stories and illustrations - so imagine my excitement when I discovered he was writing a brand new magical adventure series AND that I was invited to be part of its blog tour! The Kingdom Of Thrynne is a place of ancient magic, but those seen … Continue reading “The Cloud Horse Chronicles: Guardians Of Magic,” by Chris Riddell.
Today is my stop on the ‘My Family and Other Ghosts’ blog tour. I am very excited to be on board as I’ve loved all the previous books of Lou’s that I’ve read and I have a special piece from her about how the story reflected her relationship with her brother growing up. But first … Continue reading ‘My Family and Other Ghosts,’ by Lou Kuenzler, illustrated by Steve Brown.
This blog post has a sea-faring theme with a selection of books for readers of all ages about pirates, the sea, and the creatures who live in it. ‘Lula and the Sea Monster’ by Alex Latimer (OUP) Lula lives by the beach in her beautiful family home and she loves it. She loves looking for … Continue reading Books Ahoy!
Environmental activism is high on the agenda at the moment, with young people in particular campaigning to take care of our planet before it’s too late. There’s a rich seam of books being published at the moment which contain useful tips to help you make a difference and plenty of fiction books around environmental themes … Continue reading Planet in Peril
Today I’m bringing you the lowdown on Scoop McLaren: Detective Editor with an exclusive Q&A with Scoop herself! Scoop is a 13-year-old reporter and investigator who runs online newspaper, Click!, so she is not pleased when Sonny Fink, evil reporter extraordinaire, starts uploading the most terrible news reports on his online newspaper at one minute … Continue reading Blog Tour: ‘Scoop McLaren: Detective Editor,’ by Helen Castles, illustrations by Beatriz Castro.
With the 50th anniversary of the moon landing being celebrated this July, I’m seizing the opportunity to share all of the fantastic Space-themed books I’ve been enjoying recently. ‘Molly’s Moon Mission’ by Duncan Beedie (Templar Books) Duncan Beedie is one of my favourite picture book creators. All of his books are right on target as … Continue reading Take-off With A Good Book!
Save the library, Save the world! Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for the magical ‘The Dragon in the Library.’ To say that Kit is not the biggest fan of reading would be an understatement. As far as she concerned there is nothing worse than being stuck inside a dusty old library having … Continue reading ‘The Dragon in the Library,’ by Louie Stowell, illustrated by Davide Ortu.
The unicorn trend is still going strong with readers wanting a touch of glitter and sparkle in their bedtime stories. I am pleased, however, to see a new breed of unicorns breaking through. Unicorns who refuse to conform to their sweet and sugary image. Bring on the Grumpycorns, the hungry-corns and the downright naughty-corns (and … Continue reading Unicorns: glitter and rainbows?
For those of you who think back wistfully to your own childhood days of devouring book-upon-book of The Secret Seven or The Famous Five but are perhaps looking for alternatives more in line with contemporary views, then the new Cliff Toppers series by Fleur Hitchcock could be just the thing you’re after. For cousins Aiden, … Continue reading ‘Cliff Toppers: The Arrowhead Moor Adventure,’ by Fleur Hitchcock, cover by Tom Clohosy Cole.
Today is my stop on the blog tour for ‘Boot: Little Robot Big Adventure,’ the first in a brand new series of highly-illustrated chapter books. I defy you not to fall in love with the rather adorable robot, Boot! Toy robot, Boot, wakes up in a scrapyard with a crack in his face and no … Continue reading ‘Boot: Small Robot Big Adventure,’ by Shane Hegarty, illustrated by Ben Mantle.
This is a post for any of you planning to mark Refugee Week 2019 by raising awareness and promoting discussion about acceptance, kindness and refugees in your schools or homes. The books I’m going to share with you should be explored all year round, but I thought a special week may be … Continue reading National Refugee Week 2019 (17th-23rd June)
Ada is back in fine first chapter book form! She’s still full of questions and still bursting with scientific theories to test but this time she has the support of her fellow Questioneers to help her answer them. In this instalment in the ‘The Questioneers’ series, Ada Twist takes centre stage, already composing several important … Continue reading ‘Ada Twist and the Perilous Pantaloons,’ by Andrea Beaty, illustrations by David Roberts.
Sometimes when children get to the point of being able to confidently read independently they enjoy the challenge of a book which is still highly-illustrated but has more text in it. This is when it's time to reach for some of the brilliant first chapter books which are now available. These are often based on … Continue reading First Chapter Books
The Snow Sisters series is sure to be a hit with fans of the Disney hit, Frozen. It features three sisters with special magical powers. They live in a castle on the island of Nordovia where their family has the important role of Keepers of the Light. The Silver Secret (Book 1) In the first … Continue reading The ‘Snow Sisters’ series by Astrid Foss, cover by Sharon Tancredi, illustrated by Monique Dong.