Archive for January, 2016

January 2016. Major New Children’s Book Award Announced

Friday, January 22nd, 2016

The Klaus Flugge Prize for the Most Exciting Newcomer to Picture Book Illustration

An important new prize in the UK children’s book world is launched today: the Klaus Flugge Prize will be awarded to the most promising and exciting newcomer to children’s book illustration. It honours venerable publisher Klaus Flugge, a supremely influential figure in picture books: who this year celebrates the 40th anniversary of his publishing house Andersen Press.

It will be the only prize specifically to recognise a published picture book by a debut illustrator; the winning illustrator will receive a cheque for £5,000.

Klaus Flugge was born in Hamburg in 1934, apprenticed to a bookshop and sent to Book Trade School in Leipzig. He emigrated to America at the age of 23 as an East German refugee who spoke only German and Russian. After a variety of jobs, and two years as an American GI, he was offered a job working as a Personal Assistant to Lew Schwartz, owner of Abelard-Schuman publishing in New York. After only a year and a half Schwartz suggested he go to Europe to build up the very small list they had there and came to London in 1961. He launched Andersen Press – named after Hans Christian Andersen – in the autumn of 1976.

The roll call of artists Klaus Flugge has worked with at Andersen Press reads like a textbook on illustration: David McKee, Tony Ross, Satoshi Kitamura, Michael Foreman, Susan Varley, Emma Chichester Clark, Sir Quentin Blake, Chris Riddell, Ruth Brown and David Lucas to name but a very few.

The prize, which will be run entirely independently from Andersen Press, will be administered by Julia Eccleshare, Anne Marley and Andrea Reece, who run the Branford Boase Award for debut authors, now in its seventeenth year. Julia Eccleshare said: “The UK has long provided a home for some of the very best illustrators in the world, and UK publishers are adept at discovering and nurturing new talent. It is wonderful to have an award to highlight the gifted illustrators working in picture books and put them in the spotlight. We are delighted too that the award will recognise the extraordinary contribution Klaus Flugge has made to illustration and children’s picture books. Not only did he launch the careers of giants such as David McKee, Tony Ross, Ruth Brown, Chris Riddell and Satoshi Kitamura, but he continues to this day to champion original, creative and bold new illustrator talent.”

The Klaus Flugge Prize will be open to all picture books illustrated by a debut or first time illustrator first published by a UK publisher during 2015.  The panel of judges will be announced in February when submissions will open. The shortlist will be announced at the end of April and the winner will be revealed in September 2016.

Mid-January email Update

Thursday, January 21st, 2016

If one of your New Year’s Resolutions is to get your kids reading more then don’t miss our tips to do just that on our Facebook Page as a great book really is the best antidote for cold days indoors and video game dependence. For recommendations this month why not start with our Books of the Year, our Experts Favourite Picks of 2015

Sneak Peek on our Favourite February Books

Picture Book Pre Pub Purrfection! – Lionheart (3+) by Richard Collingridge

From the author of the beautiful wintery adventure When it Snows, comes a fabulous new tale about courage and exploring the unknown. Lionheart is a delightfully illustrated adventure which will make your youngster’s eyes light up as you read with them.

Truly magical and other worldly, yet grounded in reality and self-assurance, this is a wonderful addition to any nursery shelf.

More February books you can start reading today…

Hamish and the Neverpeople by Danny Wallace.
Quirky, original, clever, fast-paced and very funny indeed, this book, 2nd in the series will be another huge hit.
Simon Thorn and the Wolf’s Den by Aimee Carter.
A new series. Imaginative and vivid with themes of bravery and loyalty perfect for fans of Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson.
Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton.
A rollicking romp of a debut, the first in a trilogy, is an intoxicating blend of steam punk-esque Western and Arabian epic
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Ghost Writer! – Joseph Delaney’s ‘Spook’s’ Series

Part of the Starblade Chronicles, the Spook’s series by Joseph Delaney is a ghostly, epic, light vs dark fantasy adventure, riddled with supernatural beings, battles and the will to survive. It is a lightning-burst of a read that will have you white-knuckled until you reach the thrilling end.
A New Darkness is the first in this gripping ghost-hunt, devoured by our Kids Reader Reviewers and with an ending that will have you clambering for the sequel. Luckily, the second,The Dark Army is released this month! For more info click here.

Reluctant Readers? We’ll put you in the Picture!

Reading can be a challenge for some, but we are dedicated to helping reluctant readers to love reading. So, fresh for 2016, we have a challenge for you. Why not have a look at our superlative section of graphic novels. These filmic gems are so evocative and can be a different reading experience from long pages of writing so perfect for even the most reluctant or struggling reader. They can escape into their own world with titles such as the brilliantly visualized versions of the bestselling spy series featuring Alex Rider (9+) from Anthony Horowitz. Click here to get started!

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Plus check out these Super-Readable books

Barrington Stoke specialises in ‘cracking reading’, publishing super-readable children’s books that break down the barriers that can stop kids getting into reading. Their first-rate short fiction brings together the very best children’s authors and illustrators in the UK with a host of unique accessibility features to offer cracking reads accessible to more children including those with dyslexia or visual stress. You can see all the latest books in our Super Readable and Dyslexia Friendly category but below we have also brought together the 2015 Books of the Year plus this month you also have the chance to win one of 3 signed copies of Gawain Greytail and the Terrible Tab by Cornelia Funke.

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Unmissable Prize Draws

This month we have some amazing free to enter prize draws that we would be remiss not to draw your attention too!

First up you can win a SIGNED hardback copies of the hilarious Awful Auntie by David Walliams!

Next we have SIGNED copies of the Dyslexia Friendly picture book Gawain Greytail and the Terrible Tab by super author Cornelia Funke!

And finally the whole family could go and see the brilliant Horrible Histories live on stage!
All you need to do is click and enter.

The fascinating story behind The Red Abbey Chronicles

The unusual and powerful debut by Maria Turtschaninoff has, we have found out recently a fascinating story behind it that we thought more people would like to know about. It began in 2007 when the author went to see an exhibition in Helsinki on Mount Athos, an all-male monastic community, which still prohibits women from visiting its peninsula. She felt this was the ultimate hypocrisy, as the monks worship the Holy Virgin, a woman.

The experience was the catalyst for her to create The Red Abbey Chronicles where the worship of the Virgin Mother by women creates an exclusively female stronghold. Turtschaninoff  said “I want Maresi to enlighten every reader, normalising that women are powerful, strong, intelligent and most importantly, that they matter.” Click here to find out more.

Geek Girl Fans take Note

If your child is a fan of the brilliant (and Award winning) Geek Girl series by Holly Smale then we can highly recommend Accidental Superstar (11+) by Marianne Levy.

Offering a fresh take on the rags-to-riches archetype, this highly entertaining novel is laden with laughs and touching insights into friendship and family life. One of our Kids Reader Reviewers summed it up by saying ‘This book is properly funny! I could not put it down!’

And that, book fans, is January at Lovereading4kids. We’ll be back next month with more recommendations to keep you lost in words! Happy Reading!

P.S. Don’t miss the shortlisted titles for the Blue Peter Book Award and the chance to vote for the winner which will be announced on World Book Day (3 March 2016).

P.P.S. Just published is a book that our teen and YA (and even some sneaky adults) reader review panel members absolutely ‘devoured’. Alison Goodman’s The Dark Days Club combines the high society world of Jane Austen with the supernatural underworld of Cassandra Clare to create an epic and addictive series. Find out more today

Quick Reads announces 2016 titles

Tuesday, January 19th, 2016

The youngest winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, Malala Yousafzai, is amongst the authors featured on the 2016 Galaxy® Quick Reads title list.

Quick Reads celebrates its tenth anniversary in 2016 with a diverse collection of titles which will be  sponsored by Galaxy® for a sixth year:

  • Agatha Christie (edited by Sophie Hannah and John Curran) – The Double Clue: Poirot Short Stories
  • Ann Cleeves – Too Good to be True
  • Lucy Diamond – A Baby at the Beach Café
  • Veronica Henry (editor) – The Anniversary: Ten Tempting Stories From Ten Bestselling Authors
  • Andy McNab – On the Rock
  • Malala Yousafzai with Christina Lamb – I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban (An Abridged Edition)

One in six adults in the UK struggles with reading, whilst one in three does not read for pleasure, and Quick Reads will next year continue its work to break down barriers to reading. Ninety-seven per cent of literacy practitioners report that using Quick Reads has been effective at raising learners’ confidence to read, whilst 95% say that the books have been effective at improving readers’ literacy skills.

Lovereading4kids most popular books, by age range, 10 – 17 January 2016

Monday, January 18th, 2016

Books for Babies and Toddlers

1
Count with Maisy, Cheep, Cheep, Cheep! Count with Maisy, Cheep, Cheep, Cheep!
Lucy Cousins
Smiling, cheerful, independent, no wonder toddlers everywhere love Maisy, and she makes all early learning experiences fun and exciting. This story sees her helping Mummy Hen find her ten chicks, who are hiding around the farm. There are flaps on …
Download free opening extract
2
Five Minutes' Peace Five Minutes’ Peace
Jill Murphy
There can’t be a mum in the country who doesn’t identify with Mrs Large, wrapped in her comfortable dressing gown, doing her best to get away from her children for just five minutes peace (and managing a scant three minutes …
Download free opening extract
3
Grrrrr! Grrrrr!
Rob Biddulph
One of our Books of the Year 2015 -Andrea Reeces’s Pick of the Year 2015  Rob Biddulph’s prize-winning picture book Blown Away is near perfect, and his new book Grrrrr! is too! It’s the story of Fred, who is champion …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for Young Adults

1
Not If I See You First Not If I See You First
Eric Lindstrom
An incredibly uplifting, thought provoking and sharply beautiful debut. Once I started reading I couldn’t stop and when I turned the last page I could quite easily have turned back to the beginning and started all over again. The first …
Download free opening extract
2
A Monster Calls A Monster Calls
Patrick Ness
Winner of the 2012 Carnegie Medal
Rachel Levy chair of the 2012 CILIP Carnegie judging panel said: “A Monster Calls” is an exquisite piece of writing. It is a beautifully economical, structurally brilliant and lyrically descriptive account of a challenging …
Download free opening extract
3
The Red Abbey Chronicles: Maresi The Red Abbey Chronicles: Maresi
Maria Turtschaninoff
January 2015 Debut of the Month  What an unusual and powerful novel. The setting is an island in an unspecified fantasy world inhabited by a community of women who live separate from men, dedicating themselves to the worship of the …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 3+ readers

1
Blue and Bertie Blue and Bertie
Kristyna Litten
January 2016 Book of the Month  The adventures of giraffes Blue and Bertie make a comforting, humourous story that explores themes of friendship, independence and embracing the unexpected. Bertie is content to spend his days with his herd, crunching leaves, …
Download free opening extract
2
Odd Socks Odd Socks
Michelle Robinson
Everyone will enjoy this epic tale of true love and steadfastness, no less heroic or inspiring for starring a pair of woolly socks! Sosh and Suki are made for one another and their life on a fresh pair of feet …
Download free opening extract
3
The Bus is for Us! The Bus is for Us!
Michael Rosen
Former Children’s Laureate Michael Rosen will delight all readers with this hugely enjoyable and easy to chant rhyming picture book. Riding a bike, going far in a car or, when it starts to rain going in the train are all …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 5+ readers

1
How to Find Gold How to Find Gold
Viviane Schwarz
January 2016 Book of the Month  It has a publication date of January, yet How to Find Gold is already likely to top my list of picturebooks of 2016! Anna is a wonderful picturebook star: she’s eager to find gold …
Download free opening extract
2
10 Ten-Minute Stories 10 Ten-Minute Stories
Various Authors
If your New Year resolution was to spend ten minutes a day reading to your children, then this attractive collection of fairy stories from around the world would be a very good book with which to start. It contains ten …
Download free opening extract
3
The Girl with the Parrot on Her Head The Girl with the Parrot on Her Head
Daisy Hirst
Inventive and witty, this is a story that is full of ideas and imagining rather than neatly tying up loose ends. Told more through the pictures than the words, the story of Isabel’s happiness as she plays with her friend …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 7+ readers

1
The Dragonsitter to the Rescue The Dragonsitter to the Rescue
Josh Lacey
Josh Lacey’s Dragonsitter books pack really quite huge adventures as well as a lot of laughs into a very short extent, and are perfect for young readers. The Smith-Pickles are still baby-sitting Uncle Morton’s dragons and Eddie takes two, Ziggy …
Download free opening extract
2
Timmy Failure We Meet Again Timmy Failure We Meet Again
Stephan Pastis
Loveable world-class detective Timmy Failure is back for a new adventure. And his business partner and side-kick Total, a.k.a. the polar bear is with him, too. Timmy’s problem is that not everyone – and certainly not those who try to …
Download free opening extract
3
The Adventures of Miss Petitfour The Adventures of Miss Petitfour
Anne Michaels
One of our Books of the Year 2015 – A Staff Pick of the Year 2015, chosen by Shelley Fallows – December 2015 Debut of the Month There is something quite wonderful about indulging in your favourite cake, beautifully decorated …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 9+ readers

1
How to Look for a Lost Dog How to Look for a Lost Dog
Ann M. Martin
January 2016 Book of the Month  The heroine of Ann M Martin’s fine novel has a unique voice, and the story she tells is very touching. Rose (rows) has a diagnosis of autism and struggles to understand the unspoken social …
Download free opening extract
2
Time Travelling with a Hamster Time Travelling with a Hamster
Ross Welford
January 2016 Debut of the Month  This clever, touching time travel adventure owes as much to The Railway Children as it does to Back to the Future! Al (for Albert, after Einstein) Chaudhury’s dad is dead but – and here’s …
Download free opening extract
3
Haunters Haunters
Thomas Taylor
The dead and the living exist side by side in this thrilling time-travelling adventure. In David’s recurrent dream, Eddie seems real and it seems like he’s got something to tell David. That’s scary enough but then David gets picked up …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 11+ readers

1
The Icarus Show The Icarus Show
Sally Christie
January 2016 Book of the Month   There’s something appealing just about the format and feel of this book – a small hardback, it looks inviting and eminently readable. And it is just that. Alex is getting by at school through …
Download free opening extract
2
The 5th Wave The 5th Wave
Rick Yancey
A film tie-in version of The 5th Wave, a novel that packs a punch on every page with hope and despair in equal measure alongside life and death. It will leave you gasping for breath and keep you hooked to …
Download free opening extract
3
Beswitched Beswitched
Kate Saunders
One minute Flora is dreaming on a train heading back to boarding school and the next a magic spell has spun Flora into the past.  She’s mysteriously swapped lives with a schoolgirl in 1935!  What a nightmare: no iPod, no …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 13+ readers

1
The Lie Tree The Lie Tree
Frances Hardinge
Andrea Reeces’s Pick of the Year 2015 – WINNER of the 2015 Costa Children’s Book Award – Shortlisted for the 2015 Guardian Children’s Book prize – Julia Eccleshare’s Pick of the Month, May 2015  Award-winning Frances Hardinge is spellbinding is this …
Download free opening extract
2
Spook's: A New Darkness Spook’s: A New Darkness
Joseph Delaney
Dreadful monsters abound in this new chapter of the Spook’s saga and as ever Delaney’s storytelling will catch many readers. Tom Ward is now the County’s Spook and when reports come in of a series of horrible murders it’s his …
Download free opening extract
3
Never Evers Never Evers
Lucy Ivison, Tom Ellen
January 2016 Book of the Month  As warming as a cup of hot chocolate on a winter’s day, Never Evers is guaranteed to leave readers happy and smiling. The story of two groups of teenagers on a school ski trip …
Download free opening extract

January eNewsletter

Monday, January 11th, 2016

Happy New Year, book lovers! We’re on a mission to make 2016 a year of good reading and we’re excited to be starting with a cracking month of terrific titles for all ages and tastes for youngsters to enjoy. From tots to teens, we have recommendations to fit the bill. Let’s make 2016 an un-put-down-able year from cover to cover! Read on to see what’s new this month.

New Year, New Heroes – January Books of the Month

Every month, we put aside our top recommendations for kids of all ages and abilities and parade them proudly on our B.O.M bookshelf. Here it is! Two brilliant picture books worthy of special mention are:

Blue and Bertie by Kristyna Litten. A gorgeously illustrated story about finding friends in unexpected places. And How to Find Gold by Viviane Schwarz one of the most innovative and creatively inspired picture book makers of today.

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So Last Year! – The Very Best Books of 2015

You probably know that all year long we make a special fuss about the books that we think are top of their class. The must reads. Well this is where you can see the real dazzlers from our Class of 2015. These are our top picks, handily arranged by reading age, so that you and your kids can find the best books that you may have missed. Click here to get started.

And, if you like catching up on the best books of 2015, have a look at our special category where we have a handful of personal Picks of 2015 from our Editorial Experts and our Kid Reader Reviewers … we really are spoiling you now.

New Year’s Debuts

What a great way to kick off the year. New writing from new talent. Your new favourite authors! Don’t miss:

The Dark Days Club by Alison Goodman (13+). We are beside ourselves with excitement about the launch of the first in a fantastic, demonic, passionate, period trilogy.

Set in 1812, Alison Goodman’s Dark Days Club series combines the high society world of Jane Austen with the supernatural underworld of Cassandra Clare. The tightly corseted constraints of Regency England are smashed against the wonderful wildness of the dark abode in this epic and addictive series.

Our teen and YA (and even some sneaky adults) reader review panel members absolutely devoured it. Check out their views here.

 Other favourite debuts are:

Anyone but Ivy Pocket by Caleb Krisp (9+) now in paperback. An original and entertaining story with a truly irresistible heroine. One of our 2015 Books of the Year! The Red Abbey Chronicles: Maresi by Maria Turtschaninoff (YA). A Powerful and unusual, vivid and engrossing fantasy novel with strong themes of sisterhood, brotherhood, community and survival. Time Travelling with a Hamster by Ross Welford (9+). A Clever, touching time travel adventure owes as much to The Railway Children as it does to Back to the Future!
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Costa Book Awards Children’s Winner

Just announced, the 2015 Costa Children’s Book Award and the winner is a book we have been raving about since it was published in May 2015, The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge (13+).

The Costa Judges’ said of it ‘A dark, ingenious tale oozing gothic atmosphere.’ Our Kids Reader Reviewers said things like ‘a completely original read…’ and ‘simply captivating, a truly fantastic book’. Either way a Must Read for all teens.

One Night. One Wizard

With thousands of magical events and activities planned worldwide, Harry Potter Book Night 2016 on 4 February is a chance to flex your wand arm and join a truly spellbinding celebration of the World’s wonderfullest wizard! It’s a great opportunity for fans to pass on the magic to younger readers new to Hogwarts too. Visit the Bloomsbury website to find out how you can get involved in this year’s “A Night of Spells” celebration. Go on, it’s a wonderful excuse for a party!

And speaking of Magic … Is there Room on that Broom?

Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler have (almost) together transformed the children’s picture book market over the last decade or so and it is hard to believe (as we remember it well) that the classic Room on the Broom, a marvellous story of the scatty witch and her animal friends, is 15 years old! While we recover you can catch up with a special anniversary edition for a new generation of kids and parents to enjoy.

Teen Spirit! – Books for Young Adults to Cherish

It’s an incredibly formative and important time for reading. Early adulthood is often when we find books that inspire us for life and remain with us always. We have compiled a category of books especially for young adults that we feel fit this bill. Eva Ibbotson’s unforgettable love stories, highly relatable, running-away tales of coming of age and love are great examples. Truly, books to fall in love with on those cold and long winter evenings.

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Make Space for Orbiting Jupiter

Talking of great books for teens, Orbiting Jupiter by Gary D Schmidt is a wonderfully compact, heart-breaking and ultimately life-affirming tale of a life in transit. It beautifully illustrates that a person on an unlucky path can be inspired to reach their potential and live up to their responsibilities. It is a testament to the power of friendship and a book that will stay in the mind long after the final page. See more here.

Books of the Film

Finally, new films in January that, as all the best ones do, are based on even better books. Films like The 5th Wave. Find many more in the special category.

 

Lovereading4kids Most Popular Books 3 – 10 January 2016

Monday, January 11th, 2016

Books for Babies and Toddlers

1
Baby's Very First Play Book Animal Words Baby’s Very First Play Book Animal Words
Fiona Watt
There’s a great deal to spot and name in this bright, attractive book. Woodland creatures, minibeasts, underwater creatures, farm and jungle animals are all featured in vibrant illustrations and clearly labelled with their names and the noises they make too. …
Download free opening extract
2
Grrrrr! Grrrrr!
Rob Biddulph
One of our Books of the Year 2015 -Andrea Reeces’s Pick of the Year 2015  Rob Biddulph’s prize-winning picture book Blown Away is near perfect, and his new book Grrrrr! is too! It’s the story of Fred, who is champion …
Download free opening extract
3
Count with Maisy, Cheep, Cheep, Cheep! Count with Maisy, Cheep, Cheep, Cheep!
Lucy Cousins
Smiling, cheerful, independent, no wonder toddlers everywhere love Maisy, and she makes all early learning experiences fun and exciting. This story sees her helping Mummy Hen find her ten chicks, who are hiding around the farm. There are flaps on …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for Young Adults

1
Not If I See You First Not If I See You First
Eric Lindstrom
An incredibly uplifting, thought provoking and sharply beautiful debut. Once I started reading I couldn’t stop and when I turned the last page I could quite easily have turned back to the beginning and started all over again. The first …
Download free opening extract
2
The Red Abbey Chronicles: Maresi The Red Abbey Chronicles: Maresi
Maria Turtschaninoff
January 2015 Debut of the Month  What an unusual and powerful novel. The setting is an island in an unspecified fantasy world inhabited by a community of women who live separate from men, dedicating themselves to the worship of the …
Download free opening extract
3
The Dark Days Club The Dark Days Club
Alison Goodman
This first novel in a trilogy of deliciously dark, supernatural page-turners set in Regency England is packed with passion, period detail and devastating demons.
London, 1812, and sharp-minded, strong-spirited Lady Helen Wrexhall is about to be presented to Queen Charlotte. Her …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 3+ readers

1
Blue and Bertie Blue and Bertie
Kristyna Litten
January 2016 Book of the Month  The adventures of giraffes Blue and Bertie make a comforting, humourous story that explores themes of friendship, independence and embracing the unexpected. Bertie is content to spend his days with his herd, crunching leaves, …
Download free opening extract
2
The Bus is for Us! The Bus is for Us!
Michael Rosen
Former Children’s Laureate Michael Rosen will delight all readers with this hugely enjoyable and easy to chant rhyming picture book. Riding a bike, going far in a car or, when it starts to rain going in the train are all …
Download free opening extract
3
The Rhyming Rabbit The Rhyming Rabbit
Julia Donaldson
Award winning Children’s Laureate Julia Donaldson has created a delightfully entertaining picture book that celebrates poems of all kinds. All the rabbits are sick of hearing the rhyming rabbit’s poems for every occasion. Forlornly, the rabbit sets off to find …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 5+ readers

1
How to Find Gold How to Find Gold
Viviane Schwarz
January 2016 Book of the Month  It has a publication date of January, yet How to Find Gold is already likely to top my list of picturebooks of 2016! Anna is a wonderful picturebook star: she’s eager to find gold …
Download free opening extract
2
10 Ten-Minute Stories 10 Ten-Minute Stories
Various Authors
If your New Year resolution was to spend ten minutes a day reading to your children, then this attractive collection of fairy stories from around the world would be a very good book with which to start. It contains ten …
Download free opening extract
3
The Girl with the Parrot on Her Head The Girl with the Parrot on Her Head
Daisy Hirst
Inventive and witty, this is a story that is full of ideas and imagining rather than neatly tying up loose ends. Told more through the pictures than the words, the story of Isabel’s happiness as she plays with her friend …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 7+ readers

1
The Dragonsitter to the Rescue The Dragonsitter to the Rescue
Josh Lacey
Josh Lacey’s Dragonsitter books pack really quite huge adventures as well as a lot of laughs into a very short extent, and are perfect for young readers. The Smith-Pickles are still baby-sitting Uncle Morton’s dragons and Eddie takes two, Ziggy …
Download free opening extract
2
Timmy Failure We Meet Again Timmy Failure We Meet Again
Stephan Pastis
Loveable world-class detective Timmy Failure is back for a new adventure. And his business partner and side-kick Total, a.k.a. the polar bear is with him, too. Timmy’s problem is that not everyone – and certainly not those who try to …
Download free opening extract
3
I Believe in Unicorns I Believe in Unicorns
Michael, M. B. E. Morpurgo
Michael Morpurgo pulls on the heart strings in a short book into which he has packed a number of strands, richly woven together. Tomas lives for the outdoors: he hates books, reading and stories. But one day, his mother forces …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 9+ readers

1
How to Look for a Lost Dog How to Look for a Lost Dog
Ann M. Martin
January 2016 Book of the Month  The heroine of Ann M Martin’s fine novel has a unique voice, and the story she tells is very touching. Rose (rows) has a diagnosis of autism and struggles to understand the unspoken social …
Download free opening extract
2
Hamish and the Neverpeople Hamish and the Neverpeople
Danny Wallace
Hamish and the Worldstoppers was one of my favourite kids’ books of 2015, and the follow up is even better. The world is in danger again, or should that be still, and the monsters Hamish and his friends defeated in …
Download free opening extract
3
Haunters Haunters
Thomas Taylor
The dead and the living exist side by side in this thrilling time-travelling adventure. In David’s recurrent dream, Eddie seems real and it seems like he’s got something to tell David. That’s scary enough but then David gets picked up …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 11+ readers

1
The Icarus Show The Icarus Show
Sally Christie
January 2016 Book of the Month   There’s something appealing just about the format and feel of this book – a small hardback, it looks inviting and eminently readable. And it is just that. Alex is getting by at school through …
Download free opening extract
2
Beswitched Beswitched
Kate Saunders
One minute Flora is dreaming on a train heading back to boarding school and the next a magic spell has spun Flora into the past.  She’s mysteriously swapped lives with a schoolgirl in 1935!  What a nightmare: no iPod, no …
Download free opening extract
3
An Island of Our Own An Island of Our Own
Sally Nicholls
Shortlisted for the 2015 Costa Children’s Book Award – Shortlisted for the 2015 Guardian Children’s Book prize  From the winner of the Waterstones Children’s Book prize comes a new novel about family and friendship. Jonathan, Holly and Davy have been …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 13+ readers

1
Never Evers Never Evers
Lucy Ivison, Tom Ellen
January 2016 Book of the Month  As warming as a cup of hot chocolate on a winter’s day, Never Evers is guaranteed to leave readers happy and smiling. The story of two groups of teenagers on a school ski trip …
Download free opening extract
2
The Lie Tree The Lie Tree
Frances Hardinge
Andrea Reeces’s Pick of the Year 2015 – WINNER of the 2015 Costa Children’s Book Award – Shortlisted for the 2015 Guardian Children’s Book prize – Julia Eccleshare’s Pick of the Month, May 2015  Award-winning Frances Hardinge is spellbinding is this …
Download free opening extract
3
A Song for Ella Grey A Song for Ella Grey
David Almond
Winner of the 2015 Guardian Children’s Book prize -Winner of the 2015 Peters Book of the Year ‘Teen Fiction’ Award Award-winning David Almond is at his lyrical best in this eloquent, tender and ultimately devastating contemporary teenage love story …
Download free opening extract

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