Mid May already and not long to the next bank (and school) holidays. Definitely the perfect time to have a look at our Marvellous May hand-picked selections to choose your child’s next perfect read. 11+ readers will love the very topical Demons of Dunkirk by Paul Nolan. An unputdownable adventure story woven around the evacuation at Dunkirk and then the D-Day landings.
If you’re able come to the biggest book festival in the UK and probably the world, … Hay (23 – 31 May), we’d love to see you at our chill-out Lovereading4kids Browse-a-Book Zone in the Make and Take tent. We also have a very limited number of tickets for our sponsored author events to give away to Lovereading4kids on a first come, first served basis.
Events include Liz Pichon and Tom Gates (23 May), Malorie Blackman, James Dawson, Louise O’Neill and Non Pratt (25 May), Arabella Weir and Holly Smale (28 May), and Chris Riddell (30 May). Pop by and see us, we’ll be there all week! More details click here.
Brain Factor is a brilliant new series of picture quizzes that introduces children to the world around them. The unique fan design allows you to read a question and then simply slide out the next card to see the answer.
There are four age ranged titles to launch the series and you’ll find them perfect for popping in a bag or in the car so you can pull it out and entertain the kids whenever you need and they are a great alternative to them playing on a screen. We rate them very highly.
You can be the first to see that great new title with our exclusive Opening Extract downloads that let you get a peek at the latest hot books before they hit the shelves. Awesome. Books like:
The Usborne Official Astronaut’s Handbook (9+) Reach for the stars! Tim Peake, European Space Agency astronaut and the first Brit to join the International Space Station this autumn, has written a foreword to this fascinating book and says ‘This exciting guide will tell you a bit more about what it’s like to live and work in space… and why getting there and back is such a tough job..’ We also have 100 copies of a 24 page sampler of this extraordinary, stellar and aspirational insight into the life of a space traveller to give away – but you need to enter before 21 May.
|Uncle Gobb and the Dread Shed by Michael Rosen – Tries to make interesting things boring. And fails. You’ll love it. (7+)||The Mystery of the Clockwork Sparrow by Katherine Woodfine – Superlative, shop-based sleuthing with a sweet-tooth. (9+)||The Forever Man by Eoin Colfer – 3rd in the W.A.R.P Series. Time-travelling adventure from the author of Artemis Fowl. (9+)||How to be Bad by E Lockhart – New from author of We Were Liars. A road trip to Miami breaks hearts and tests friendships. (YA)|
Railway Children quotes aside. ‘Come on now, dry those tears’. It’s Father’s Day next month and one particular favourite of ours (hint) is I Love: Dad by Camilla de le Bedoyere (5+) – Love is all around us. Exploring all the reasons to love your dad. (fear not – there’s one for Mums too).
We have to say a huge thank you to the V&A as they have decided to republish four richly drawn, hilarious and immersive children’s classics by Jack Townend which are a delight for 3+ children and parents alike.
It’s raining cats and dogs. Well, puppies and kittens to be precise. May’s series of the month from Holly Webb is awash with cute and loveable animals getting themselves in and out of all sorts of scrapes. There are over 30 books in all and it’s a great series to get young readers increasingly confident in independent reading.
And, if you love Holly Webb’s Animal Stories you’ll adore this new app perfectly designed to appeal to children 5+ The app includes a personalised avatar-pet, over twenty games and activities, a library and an exclusive short story! There are no adverts and it’s absolutely free! Find out more info on the individual book pages.
‘A book at bedtime’ just got a whole lot more exciting, as we’ve given our stunning Bedtime Reads category a thorough spring clean. Even more fabulous and colourful adventures await you and your little ones. Click here to see the lot, or go straight for our latest fave Wendy and the Wallpaper Cat (3+) by Jason Hook & Ilaria Demonti – Beautifully illustrated and magically imaginative sleep help book.
So they liked that last series. But it’s over now. What do you do? Go to our If You Like, You’ll Love section. That’s what. Chock full of grip-tastic titles right up their street. This month we have two new authors that will be loved by fans of Michael Morpurgo.
|The Runaways by Megan Rix. Shortlisted for the 2015 Red house Children’s Book Award two elephants and an old Border collie are the stars of Megan Rix’s wonderfully heart-warming new WW1 animal story. Our Kids reader reviewers loved these books – Sam Harper said ‘a perfect mix of heart warming friendship and thrilling adventure’.||Dog Ears by Anne Booth. There are apparently 700,000 young carers in the UK and this sensitively-told, compassionate story puts them in the spotlight. Anna tries hard at school and at home, where things are not easy as her Mother is suffering post-natal depression so Anna confides in Timmy her dog. This is both engaging and thought-provoking.|
At every age, there are some books that we feel everyone should read! So here at Lovereading4kids we put them all in one place for you to take your pick of the cream of previously published children’s literature. This month we have added Holes by Louis Sachar (11+) – It is one of Roddy Doyle’s favourite books too – brilliant, original and life enhancing storytelling – and right up there with Lord of the Flies.
Refreshed and bursting with verse, our poetry section is designed to give kids hours of fun and expand their enjoyment, knowledge and skill. With a message from former Children’s Laureate Michael Rosen, the category is definitely worth a rifle. Click here for more. And do look out for the CLPE Poetry shortlisted titles in the Poetry Section.
Julia Eccleshare Shares!
Resident expert Julia Eccleshare has selected her top tips this month for young readers. Their next great adventure is just a click away.
Fans of Judy Moody absolutely must click here to find out about books by Clementine Beauvais where silly jokes and madcap adventures are the order of the day in this very funny and highly illustrated royalty-themed series for younger readers.
The first two are called The Royal Babysitters and The Royal Wedding Crashers and Clementine has written a special blog about 10 of the best French Children’s books translated into English…
We just had to tell you about a brilliant, inspiring and inventive book that is designed to help kids aged 7+ to create and write their own stories. Write Your Own Adventure Stories is a write-in book which leads them on a steadily building journey until they are confidently creating characters, dialogue and plot. Set their imaginations free and watch them blossom. Perfect for the summer holidays and those rainy days when it’s no fun to be outside.
And speaking of writing … Send in Your Manuscripts! Seize the Day! – If you have a children’s book you have written lurking in a drawer or you know someone who’s too shy to blow their own trumpet, the Times Chicken House Children’s book competition is now open for 2016 entries. Go on. Take the leap!
Adventure heroes like to hear the words “9mm”, if it refers to their Uzi. But what if it’s their height? Screen-writer John McNally’s singular series: Inifinity Drake (9+), adored by our Reader Reviewers, is both funny, and nerve-shatteringly thrilling.
A world of lethal danger and high octane adventures, from a very different (and tiny) perspective. Second in this mind-blowing series is out now.
YA Reading Fest
Talking trouble … Non Pratt, if you haven’t heard, is a publisher-cum-author and a leading light in YA Fiction. Her bitter-sweet contemporary relationship tales get right to the centre of what it is to be young today. Check out Trouble and Remix: funny, touching, terrifying and real, both of them. Then come and see her at one of our Hay Festival events!
The ‘Bane’ of Your Life … A perfect gift for Shadowhunter fans, Cassandra Clare has brought out a lavishly illustrated version of The Bane Chronicles. Engrossing and enlightening, emotionally enveloping short stories which our panel of teen reviewers absolutely loved. Read what they had to say.
A Gem of a trilogy … The Moonstone Legacy by Diana De Gunzburg and Tony Wild is an action-packed adventurous tale with an added magical touch of the mystical dancing across the pages. A treat of three books in one, we follow brave and capable Lizzy as she struggles to break a family curse. Short punchy chapters and beautiful descriptive detailing make this extremely readable.
Full Marks for Horror … Chilling and thrilling, like watching TV from behind the sofa, Graham Marks’ additions to the Red Eye Series for kids aged 13+ are scaring, daring and hair-raising. Latest to join the horror show is Bad Bones, an unravelling nightmare that will have them hiding under the duvet and unable to stop reading. See all Red Eye titles here.
And that is it for May. We’ll be back with more great titles and ideas for your little treasures in June.