*Winner of the Blue Peter Book Award 2020* After reading and loving Vashti’s debut novel, Brightstorm, it was with much anticipation and excitement that I awaited a copy of her newest adventure ‘WildSpark.’ A whole new world and its inhabitants awaited me. Prue lives on a farm with her Ma and Pa, spending her time … Continue reading ‘WildSpark,’ by Vashti Hardy, cover by George Ermos.
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.
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
Today my blog is the port of call for the Malamander blog tour. Get ready to set sail for the quaint seaside town of Eerie-on-Sea. At first glance, Eerie-on-Sea appears to be just like any other seaside town. But this is a town shrouded in legend and mystery - when night falls and the mist … Continue reading ‘Malamander,’ by Thomas Taylor, cover by George Ermos.
Today is my stop on the blog tour for ‘The Fire Maker,’ a story of magic tricks, genies and dangerous ambition. Alex’s life is consumed by his love of magic and his quest to win Young Magician Of The Year which is being judged by one of his idols, Jack Keller. Despite being teased at … Continue reading ‘The Fire Maker,’ by Guy Jones, cover by Helen Crawford-White.
It’s here. The final instalment in the brilliant ‘Who Let The Gods Out?’ series by writing wizard and all round fabulous person, Maz Evans. This book dives straight into a monumental battle between good and evil and Elliot is forced to collect the final Chaos Stone from the burning River Phlegethon by crazed Daemon of … Continue reading ‘Against All Gods,’ by Maz Evans, illustrations by Aleksei Bitskoff.
A flying machine, a murder and terrible danger.... Listen to me chat to author, Fleur Hitchcock about all this and more on the latest blog tour episode of my Library Girl And Book Boy podcast (available on all good listening platforms!) Athan Wilde has a dream - he dreams of soaring through the air in … Continue reading ‘The Boy Who Flew,’ by Fleur Hitchcock, cover by Ben Mantle.
An orphan girl, a wealthy stranger and many alternate realities.... Tess De Sousa has grown up in Ackerbee’s Home for Lost and Foundlings, but with her passion for scientific experimentation and pet tarantula, Violet, Tess is not your average orphan. Her arrival at the home was shrouded in mystery - left on the doorstep with … Continue reading ‘The Star-Spun Web,’ by Sinéad O’Hart, cover by Sara Mulvanny.
Brown paper packages tied up with string, these are a few of my favourite things. Especially when they contain books as wonderful as Little Bird Flies! That’s why I’m so delighted to be part of its blog tour, with not only a review, but also an exclusive interview recorded with Karen especially for my podcast … Continue reading ‘Little Bird Flies,’ by Karen McCombie, cover by Jasu Hu.
Now I had been saving this book to read whilst snuggled up in the Christmas holidays as I knew Millwood Hargrave’s writing was going to whisk me away to an enchanted, frozen landscape and I wanted to savour it. Going to the in-laws’ to sit by their log fire was the perfect opportunity. Mila lives … Continue reading Festive read #2 ‘The Way Past Winter,’ by Kiran Millwood Hargrave, cover by Helen Crawford-White.
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.
A brand new wintry instalment in the sublimely fantastical Magic Forest series. Winter has fallen in the Magic Forest and its inhabitants are not happy - all the snow is ruining their prize-winning gardens. It is decided (following advice from Gnomedalf) that a team of five brave heroes (consisting of a unicorn, a fairy, a … Continue reading ‘Super Frozen Magic Forest,’ by Matty Long.
I cannot explain to you my level of excitement when a beautiful festive package from Macmillan Children’s Books was delivered through my letterbox by, I presume, elves. When I opened it, I squeaked with excitement as a gorgeous, twinkly (personalised!) copy of illustrative-wizard, Alex T. Smith’s new festive title was revealed! The book takes place … Continue reading ‘How Winston Delivered Christmas,’ by Alex T. Smith
You all know the story of the race to the North Pole, right? Wrong! I bet you’ve never heard the remarkable tale of Matthew Henson, part of a team of men who reached the North Pole on a dog sled AHEAD of Dr. Cook! This new super-readable title from Barrington Stoke tells the unbelievable bit … Continue reading ‘Race to the Frozen North: The Matthew Henson Story,’ by Catherine Johnson, illustrated by Katie Hickey.
I’ve just finished this epic Viking adventure from notes historian and author Janina Ramirez, and it was brilliant. Alva has the heart of a shield maiden and wants to follow in the footsteps of her father who has gone a-Viking over the sea. She’s desperate to be allowed to help her uncle, Magnus, solve mysteries … Continue reading ‘Riddle of the Runes,’ by Janina Ramirez, illustrated by David Wyatt.
Book Boy is a huge fan of Top Gear, Formula One racing (and any other type of motor racing for that fact!) so he was especially excited when this new Stig-based adventure dropped through the letterbox, ready for its blog tour. “Some say he is merely a phantom - a figment of our imaginations. And … Continue reading ‘The Stig: Playing a Dangerous Game,’ by Jon Claydon & Tim Lawler, illustrated by Kanako & Yuzuru.
Last night’s bedtime story took us off down the yellow brick road to visit the Wonderful Wizard of Oz in this great adaption for little ones. In this modern reimagining of a classic children’s tale, preschooler Little Dot is helping peg the washing out when a tornado blows in. Little Dot and her dog, Toto, make it … Continue reading ‘The Wizard Of Oz,’ by L. Frank Baum, adapted by Meg McLaren and Sam Hay.
I had originally purchased this one for Book Boy to read but the beautiful cover and blurb drew me to it, so I read it first! When a cargo ship flounders in a fearsome storm, a container of robots empties its contents into a turbulent sea. Many sink, some are eventually dashed to pieces on … Continue reading Holiday Read #6: ‘The Wild Robot,’ by Peter Brown.
This is the second of my much-anticipated holiday reads. I bought it a little while ago following a lot of good reviews, and now that I’m on holiday, I actually have time to read it! Orphaned Christopher works with Mr Absalom, an unregistered mechanic who specialises in making mechanical children (the creation of adults is … Continue reading Holiday Read #2: ‘Tin,’ by Pádraig Kenny, illustrations by Katie Hickey.