It’s that time of year when you might be looking for a gently spooky read to get your little pumpkins into the Halloween mood. In this post, I’m sharing a selection of book suitable for readers aged between newborn and seven-years-old. Each features characters who perhaps don’t quite match up to their scary exteriors. ‘Easy-to-use … Continue reading Halloween Reads (ages 0-7)
The arrival of the Windrush in 1948 is celebrated every year on Windrush Day, 22nd June. Until recently, there were very few children’s books about the influx of men, women, and children from Caribbean countries coming to the U.K. to start new lives and fill post-war labour shortages. Award-winning Dr Benjamin Zephaniah has previously written … Continue reading ‘We Sang Across the Sea: The Empire Windrush and Me,’ by Benjamin Zephaniah & Onyinye Iwu.
Eid is a festival which is celebrated by millions of people around the world. You might be looking for a new book which explains what happens on this special day, including traditions, foods and greetings. ‘The Most Exciting Eid’ captures the excitement of the day as seen through the eyes of a young girl called … Continue reading ‘The Most Exciting Eid,’ by Zeba Talkhani, illustrated by Abeeha Tariq.
There are few greater pleasures in life than cracking open the cover of a beautifully-produced, chunky information book. To that end, I am delighted to be sharing some of the most recent (and very giftable) titles I have been sent. A collection of 366 curious questions asked by children from around the world, based on … Continue reading Non-Fiction November
‘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)
It’s that time of year when some of our thoughts may turn to the spooky or the magical. This blog features some of the latest titles I’ve been sent which reflect these themes. Take a look but don’t get scared…! Board Books ‘Five Spooky Friends,’ by Danielle McLean, illustrated by Rosalind Maroney (Little Tiger Press) … Continue reading Happy Halloween
Today I have two books celebrating the rich history of Afro hair. First we travel back 5,000 years to the hair fashions of Ancient Egypt, then flash forwards to contemporary styles for textured hair such as hair puffs and halo braids. ‘The Story of Afro Hair,’ by K. N. Chimbiri, illustrated by Joelle Avelino (Scholastic) … Continue reading Awesome Afro Hair
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.
‘The Place for Me’ contains twelve tales of sacrifice and bravery inspired by first-hand account of the Windrush generation. They have been written by: K.N. Chimbiri, Kevin George, Salena Godden, Judy Hepburn, Ashley Hickson-Lovence, Jermain Jackman, Kirsty Latoya, Katy Massey, E.L. Norry, and Quincy the Comedian. It also features a foreword by Dame Floella Benjamin … Continue reading ‘The Place for Me: Stories About the Windrush Generation,’ produced in partnership with Black Cultural Archives, cover illustration by Joelle Avelino.
I always on the look-out for highly-illustrated middle grade titles packed with laughs and that is exactly what you get from this brilliant story told through a series of letters from a son to his super-spy parents (whom he believes are sprout farming in Outer Castonga!) The Plot: 10-year-old Freddy Spicer writes letters to his … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘Chocolate Milk, X-Ray Specs and Me,’ by Bethany Walker, illustrated by Jack Noel.
Classics are classics for a reason, but they can sometimes be inaccessible to younger readers. The collection of books I’m about to share with you are all innovations and reimagining of so true literary greats, but with twists, tweaks and turns which will make them more accessible to today’s readers. Perhaps then, they will be … Continue reading Classics with a Twist
After the end of the Second World War, British citizens from the Commonwealth were invited to relocate to Britain to help rebuild the country. Not all were made welcome and many suffered discrimination and racism because of the colour of their skin. Due to various changes in law, and the government’s determination to be seen … Continue reading The Windrush Generation
As the night’s draw in and the weather turns chillier, my thoughts always turn to snuggling up under a blanket with a good book. Halloween is a great time to find a new favourite read - whether magical or spooky so I’m bringing you some of the newest choices around. ‘Mirabelle Gets Up to Mischief,’ … Continue reading Happy Halloween!
If you're already on the look out for funny books being released next year, look no further than the laugh-filled 'Chocolate Milk, Ray Spec, and Me' which is due out in January. 10-year-old Freddy Spicer writes letters to his parents - who he believes are working at a Brussels-sprouts farm in Outer Castonga, with no … Continue reading Cover Reveal & Exclusive Extract of: ‘Chocolate Milk, X-Ray Specs and Me,’ by Bethany Walker, illustrated by Jack Noel.
We love graphic novels in our household and Book Boy always has to have the first read. Last week, he was relaxing in the paddling pool with ‘Donut the Destroyer.’ He’d already enjoyed Sarah Graley’s previous graphic novel, ‘Glitch,’ so was excited to read this next one. Make sure you read Sarah’s awesome piece about … Continue reading ‘Donut the Destroyer,’ by Sarah Graley and Stef Purenins.
I have been amazed by the quick response of many authors and publishers to the current covid-19 crisis. I’ve seen some excellent books about the virus and trying to explain why we need to socially-distance from those we love. Yesterday, a new title about the importance of hand-washing arrived through my letterbox. Now that more … Continue reading ‘Now Wash Your Hands!’ by Matt Carr.
Today I’m dusty off my dancing shoes, fluffing up my feather boa and high-kicking off the blog tour for the totally fabulous ‘Llama Glamarama’ blog tour. Best known for his award-winning ‘Noah Can’t Even’ teen series, Simon James Green is making his first glitter-filled foray into the world of picture books. And this fabulous creature … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘Llama Glamarama,’ by Simon James Green, illustrated by Garry Parsons.
Given the high profile of climate change and a rise in climate activism amongst the youth of the world, it’s little surprise that the theme for the 50th Earth Day is climate activism. I am about to share with you all some titles which I hope will inform pupils about some of the global issues … Continue reading Books to Encourage Climate Activism – Earth Day 2020
As a parent of a child in Year 6, I am keenly aware that Book Boy may not be returning to school in time to do all the usual 'end of Year 6' things - performances, shirt signings, the sex education session which I am sure many parents (including myself) are not overly confident in … Continue reading Books to use in RSE (Relationships and Sex Education) in Year 6.
Ooh readers, you are in for a treat. I read this brilliant curse-filled tale over the course of the day and thoroughly loved it! When Noah Bradley and his family arrive at their newest house in the middle of the night, he can’t help but wonder how long he will be able to call it … Continue reading Blog tour: ‘The Thirteenth Home of Noah Bradley,’ by Amber Lee Dodd,