Well my first read of 2022 was an absolute belter! Get ready to step aboard the Anthos and set sail on a thrilling adventure… Nico Cloud desperately wants to be an explorer, but her parents think adventures aren’t for girls. Fate intervenes when Nico chases a kitten on board a ship . . . and … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘The Ship of Cloud and Stars,’ by Amy Raphael, cover by George Ermos.
I cannot think of a more wonderfully Christmassy book to start off my festive book advent. And I have a copy for one of you lucky people to WIN over on Twitter. Visit my pinned tweet and follow the instructions. Wish it could be Christmas every day? Well, for nine-year-old Holly Carroll and her family, … Continue reading Book Advent – Day 1 – ‘The Christmas Carrolls,’ by Mel Taylor-Bessant, illustrated by Selom Sunu.
Firstly, I’d like to congratulate Ross on his nomination for The Costa Book Awards for his fantastical World War 2 adventure ‘The Midnight Guardians’ - it’s quite unlike anything I’ve read before! So now that you know the calibre of the writer we’re dealing with here, I know you’ll be excited to hear about his … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘The Chime Seekers,’ by Ross Montgomery, cover by David Dean.
Pam Smy’s first novel, ‘Thornhill,’ was met with much critical acclaim and nominated for several awards so my expectations of ‘The Hideaway’ were high. Well let me tell you, she has crafted another beautifully told tale interwoven with atmospheric greyscale illustrations. Pam has written an exclusive piece for this blog about being an illustrator. You … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘The Hideaway,’ by Pam Smy.
‘Reflecting Realities’ is the name of a powerful piece of research conducted by the CLPE (Centre for Literacy in Primary Education) which focussed on extent and quality of ethnic representation and diversity within children’s literature. Their third report (published in November 2020) found that only 7% of children’s literature published over the past three years … Continue reading Reflecting Realities – Part 1 (diverse ethnicities)
If you are looking for a dark, mysterious, brooding read for young teen readers, then this is what you need to get hold of. It is very rare that I am so enthralled by a book that I am compelled to read it in one sitting. But that is exactly what happened with ‘The Ash … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘The Ash House,’ by Angharad Walker.
Amy’s writing is always a little bit magical, a little bit thought-provoking, and a little bit special. Her newest novel, Lightning Falls, certainly fits into this category. With a haunted house, a hallowed ghost, and a glimmering portal into another world, there is plenty for readers to become immersed in. Amy has also written a … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘Lightning Falls,’ by Amy Wilson, cover by Studio Helen.
You may well already have read the stunning, ‘The Last Wild’ trilogy. Set in a land in quarantine, a deadly virus has killed all the animals except pests and it's expected to be equally dangerous to humans. ‘The Wild Before’ is an equally brilliant prequel which explains how the virus came to be and some … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘The Wild Before,’ by Piers Torday, cover by Thomas Flintham.
Blue Peter award-winning author Vashti Hardy is back with another thrilling adventure. If you loved Brightstorm or Wildspark, you won’t want to miss this! Ironhold is an orderly place where "industry brings prosperity", and where nature is pushed aside for progress. But when Orin Crowfall, a lowly servant boy, learns that the island itself is in … Continue reading ‘Crowfall,’ by Vashti Hardy, cover by George Ermos.
A couple of months ago, I was honoured to do the cover reveal for Alex Cotter’s creepy, atmospheric middle grade debut. Today, I’m thrilled to be part of the blog tour AND have a special piece by Alex about the power of spooky stories. “Where has Faith's dad gone? Why has he left his family … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘The House on the Edge,’ Alex Cotter, cover by Kathrin Honesta.
I am forever bemoaning the lack of choice when it comes to dinosaur books for readers looking for a meatier read than a picture book. Well I’m moaning no more as the totally awesome ‘A Dinosaur Ate My Sister’ has stomped onto the scene for all your dino-needs! It’s so good, that it is the … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘A Dinosaur Ate My Sister,’ by Pooja Puri, illustrated by Allen Fatimaharan.
I’m always excited to see a brand-new series featuring GIRLS playing football and today I am sharing the very first title in the new ‘The Dream Team’ series. ‘Olá! I'm Jasmina Santos-Campbell (but you can call me Jaz). You've probably heard of me and my football team the Bramrock Stars before. No? Well, you will … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘Jaz Santos vs. the World,’ by Priscilla Mante, cover by Camilla Sucre.
‘The Caravan at the Edge of Doom’ is the hilarious debut novel of comedian, Jim Beckett, and has been dubbed ‘Pratchett for tweens.’ I can see why - its madcap humour, crazy characters, and hilarious take on the afterlife make it a sure-fire winner with fans of funny. I got the chance to ask Jim … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘The Caravan at the Edge of Doom,’ by Jim Beckett, illustrated by Olia Muza.
Well I’m not going to lie. I’m a card-carrying member of the Crater Lake fan club so I’d been counting down to its sequel ever since I learnt there was going to be one. I couldn’t wait to see what had happened to Lance and the gang after they survived the Crater Lake school trip … Continue reading ‘Crater Lake – Evolution,’ by Jennifer Killick.
You know that when you start a new Frank Cottrell-Boyce that you’re going to be in for a treat. I wasn’t disappointed when I cracked open the cover of ‘Noah’s Gold’ and hopped aboard the minibus with the pupils of St Anthony’s. ‘Eleven-year old Noah sneaks along on his big sister's geography field trip. Everything … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘Noah’s Gold,’ by Frank Cottrell-Boyce, illustrated by Steven Lenton.
Uh oh! The irrepressible Levi (aka The Loudmouth Llama) and Yasmin are back for another adventure, but this time (spoiler alert!) Yasmin has found her voice! ‘Yasmin Shah is just like any other ten-year-old girl, with a crazy loud family, the BEST best friend ever and a talking toy llama! With the help of her … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘Llama on a Mission,’ by Annabelle Sami, illustrated by Allen Fatimaharan.
I’m thrilled that Peter Bunzl has added his talents to the brilliant selection of short, snappy reads published by dyslexia-friendly publisher, Barrington Stoke. As you would expect if you’ve read Peter’s ‘Cogheart’ series, ‘Featherlight’ has family at its heart with a little flash of magic. ‘When the lighthouse no longer shines, what else has the … Continue reading ‘Featherlight,’ by Peter Bunzl, cover by Evan Hollingdale.
Today I’m sharing a brilliant debut novel by Helen Harvey: Emmy Levels Up. It’s a fantastic story about gaming, friendship and standing up for yourself. I also have Helen’s top three gaming recommendations for children AND for adults. ‘Emmy is brilliant at the computer game, Illusory Isles. Her avatar is a powerful fire elemental with … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘Emmy Levels Up,’ by Helen Harvey, cover by Abbey Lossing.
Chris Wormell is perhaps best know for his distinctive illustrative style, but he has also created several picture books and now, a novel - the rather wonderful ‘The Magic Place.’ Make sure you read Chris’s special piece about the places he used to escape to as a child and how they inspire his writing. 'And … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘The Magic Place,’ by Chris Wormell.
As all children look set to returning to school over the coming days, I know that emotional wellbeing will be a key concern for many. With lots of pupils having felt very isolated over the past few months, anxiety about returning to school or even being in large groups of people may be looming large. … Continue reading ‘Swan Song,’ by Gill Lewis.