Archive for June, 2016

Most popular children’s books, by age, on Lovereading4kids 20 – 26 June 2016

Monday, June 27th, 2016

Books for Babies and Toddlers

1
I Need a Wee! I Need a Wee!
Sue Hendra
Winner of the Laugh-Out-Loud Book Awards 2016 – Picture Book Category  Sure to appeal to toddlers and very young children given Alan the Bear has the same problem that many young children also have.  That of having too many other …
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2
The National Trust: A Walk in the Countryside The National Trust: A Walk in the Countryside
Rosalind Beardshaw
There’s so much more for young children to learn from this gorgeous board book than just how to count. Rosalind Beardshaw’s two little friends enjoy an autumn walk, and not only do they discover all sorts of wild creatures and …
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3
Little Blue Truck Little Blue Truck
Alice Shertle
Farmyard fun, vehicles, animal noises to make, a jolly rhyming text and a lovely message about the importance of being kind to others, this picture book has it all. Little Blue Truck is rattling down the road sharing a cheery …
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Featured Books for Young Adults

1
Nightwanderers Nightwanderers
C. J. Flood
June 2016 Book of the Month From the Branford Boase award-winning author of Infinite Sky comes this smartly-plotted page-turner about intense friendship and discovering unexpected strengths.
Shy Rosie had “never had a true friend” until Titania – Ti – comes along. …
Download free opening extract
2
Fire Colour One Fire Colour One
Jenny Valentine
Shortlisted for the CILIP Carnegie Medal 2016.
Julia Eccleshare’s Pick of the Year 2015 Guardian Prize winning author Jenny Valentine’s long-awaited new novel is clever, beautifully written, full of ideas. It tells the story of sixteen-year-old Iris: lonely and desperately …
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3
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

Featured Books for 3+ readers

1
Home Home
Carson Ellis
June 2016 Book of the Month Home – it could be a house in the country, a flat, a wigwam, or even an old boot. This beautiful book has fun with the notion of home and each page illustrates a …
Download free opening extract
2
The Detective Dog The Detective Dog
Julia Donaldson
June 2016 Book of the Month A celebration of dogs and books alike, Julia Donaldson employs typically sparkling rhyme to tell the story of Peter – a very nice child though he could have been neater – and his dog, …
Download free opening extract
3
Ace Dragon Ltd Ace Dragon Ltd
Russell Hoban
Quentin Blake’s wonderfully airy and energetic illustrations perfectly match this quirky fantasy by that other master, Russell Hoban. A little boy called John accidentally finds a dragon beneath a manhole cover in a busy street.  The passers-by take no notice …
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Featured Books for 5+ readers

1
The Secret Pirate The Secret Pirate
Elli Woollard
June 2016 Book of the Month Lil might look like an ordinary schoolgirl, but under her jumper and vest she’s a pirate! When the thoroughly rotten Stinkbeard arrives Lil flies into battle against him, because Lil is a pirate who’ll …
Download free opening extract
2
Flo of the Somme Flo of the Somme
Hilary Robinson
One of our Books of the Year 2015 | Shortlisted for the prestigious Young Quills Award for Historical Fiction | The stories of the many animals involved in the First World War make a great way to explain to children …
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3
The Great Farty Slob Beast The Great Farty Slob Beast
Charlie Farley
There’s monstrous fun to be had in this raucous picture book! Sisters Molly, Amy and Lola are bored; Mum’s busy so sends them to Dad who warns the three, ‘bored children get monsters to play with!’ Sure enough, a huge, …
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Featured Books for 7+ readers

1
How to Look After Your Human How to Look After Your Human
Kim Sears
June 2016 Book of the Month Though it’s primarily aimed at dogs, humans too – particularly those who share their home with a canine companion – will find lots to inform and entertain them in Maggie Mayhem’s comprehensive guide. Maggie, …
Download free opening extract
2
Seacrow Island Seacrow Island
Astrid Lindgren
Julia Eccleshare’s Pick of the Month June 2016 When the Melkerson family rent a holiday home on the far away Seacrow Island they have no idea of the wonderful adventures that lie in store for them. Father Melkerson, a very …
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3
Oxford Roald Dahl Dictionary Oxford Roald Dahl Dictionary
Oxford Dictionaries, Susan Rennie, Roald Dahl
June 2016 Book of the Month Dictionaries don’t come more fun than this celebration of Roald Dahl, his books and the joy he took in gobblefunking (ie playing with words, inventing new words and meanings). Dahl had an extraordinary understanding …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 9+ readers

1
The Accidental Secret Agent The Accidental Secret Agent
Tom McLaughlin
June 2016 Book of the Month – In a Nutshell: espionage – laughs – fake moustaches.
The story of a boy who accidentally becomes a secret agent, Tom McLaughlin’s new book is laugh-out-loud funny, particularly if, like its hero, you daydream …
Download free opening extract
2
The Wilderness War The Wilderness War
Julia Green
June 2016 Book of the Month – In a Nutshell: protest – friendship – the great outdoors
At a time when children are accused of disconnecting from the natural world Julia Green’s story of kids protecting their patch of wilderness is …
Download free opening extract
3
Street Child Street Child
Berlie Doherty
Julia Eccleshare’s Pick of the Month June 2016  Twice the winner of the prestigious Carnegie Medal, here Berlie Doherty movingly captures the life of an orphan in Victorian London. Based on the true accounts of children whose lives led the …
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Featured Books for 11+ readers

1
Private Peaceful Private Peaceful
Michael, M. B. E. Morpurgo
It will seem odd when reading this book that the author enjoyed writing it the most of all the 90 or so he has written so far. That’s because it’s the one that most touched a nerve with him, that …
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2
A Stitch in Time A Stitch in Time
Penelope Lively
Julia Eccleshare’s Pick of the Month June 2016  Award-winning Penelope Lively’s classic story humorously captures the dreamy and imaginary world of eleven year old Maria. An only child, Maria is used to quietly observing the world around her. When her …
Download free opening extract
3
The Boy at the Top of the Mountain The Boy at the Top of the Mountain
John Boyne
Julia Eccleshare’s Pick of the Month June 2016 Bestselling John Boyne returns to the Second World War for The Boy at the Top of the Mountain, the story of the transformation of Pierrot. Pierrot lives in France. His mother is …
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Featured Books for 13+ readers

1
One One
Sarah Crossan
Winner of the CILIP Carnegie Medal 2016.
Award-winning Sarah Crossan tells an astonishing and difficult story with the surest of touches in this tender, funny and life affirming book. Grace and Tippi are twins. Not just twins but conjoined twins, sharing …
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2
The Crystal Run The Crystal Run
Sheila O’Flanagan
June 2016 Debut of the Month High-octane, high-stakes fantasy quest in which a teenage boy finds himself embroiled a world of warring lands and self-sacrificing teenagers.
At first, “gangly” Joe might seem an unlikely hero. The gripping opening scene sees him bullied …
Download free opening extract
3
Five Hundred Miles Five Hundred Miles
Kevin Brooks
June 2016 Book of the Month | Interest Age Teen,  Reading Age 8
In a Nutshell: mysteries – urban jungle – escape
With typical intensity, Kevin Brooks presents readers with a slice of the life of a singular young man. Cole and …
Download free opening extract

Mid-June email newsletter

Tuesday, June 21st, 2016

The long days of summer are the perfect companion to a good book. Dive head first into our Summer Reading section, a cool refreshing pool of the best of the best in books for all ages and this year we have added in some terrific super readable short fiction, to spend the holidays broadening minds and horizons. Here’s a tiny taster…

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Sneak Peek! – Pre-Publication Extracts

Another chance this month to read fantabulous (FREE) excerpts of new titles before they hit the shelves. Cool, huh?

Children of Icarus by Caighlan Smith. The tension is high, the writing is taut, and this sharp, strident fantasy for fans of The Hunger Games. Ned’s Circus of Marvels by Justin Fisher. Adventures don’t come more action-packed than this… Harry Potter will find that it hits the spot. How Not to Disappear by Clare Furniss. A beautiful, bittersweet story about family bonds, the cycle of life and love in all its forms.
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By Ecc! – Julia Eccleshare’s Top Tips for June

Guardian Children’s Editor and Lovereading4kids guru, Julia Eccleshare knows a thing or two about kids books. Here are her top tips for terrific titles this month.

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Read Carpet! – Children’s Book Awards

STOP PRESS…Carnegie and Greenaway Awards Winners just announced

What do Arthur Ransome, CS Lewis, Quentin Blake and Raymond Briggs have in common? They’ve all won a Carnegie or Greenaway gong; that’s what! Arguably the most prestigious children’s book awards in the world, they celebrate the best tale-tellers in the land! and the winners of the 2016 prize were announced 1pm on 20 June.

The Greenaway Award for an illustrated title has gone to Chris Riddell for his work with Neil Gaiman to create the spellbindingly magical Sleeper and the Spindle. The Carnegie Award for outstanding writing went to the original and utterly gripping One by Sarah Crossan and it’s the first EVER verse novel to win. Congratulations to the winners and find out more about both books and the other titles that made the shortlist in our special category.

Different (brush) Strokes – The Klaus Flugge Prize

Brand new and a welcome addition to the Awards season, the Klaus Flugge Prize honours the most promising and exciting newcomers to children’s illustration. Named after one of the most influential voices in picture books, this is the place to find the next big thing in painted pages! See more.

     

Menagerie Mayhem! – The House on Hummingbird Island (9+)

Imagine an imaginary menagerie manager, managing an imaginary menagerie. Easier said than done, but horse-hoarding (she has five!) Sam Angus has! The House on Hummingbird Island, her second novel, is a colourful tale with a heroine reminiscent of a modern day Gerald Durrell. Bursting with character and full of secrets, it’s a thrilling read for anyone who loved Eva Ibbotson’s Journey to the River Sea.

We Give Two Hoots the Thumbs Up!

Hell-bent on creating beautiful, characterful books that stand the test of time, Pan Macmillan has launched brand new imprint Two Hoots. Featuring some of the most gifted authors and illustrators, this is one to watch!

Books like Colin and Lee, Carrot and Pea by Morag Hood a simple and engaging book that will actually help to get kids eating their veg! To celebrate the launch of the first four titles, we are giving you a chance to win a Two Hoots Goodie bag! Ta-wit-ta-WAHOO! Click here for more.

Get Out of Town! – National Trust Books for Kids

Calling all conservationists! The National Trust series of books for a broad range of ages are the perfect way to inspire a long-lasting love of the countryside and the confidence to explore and learn about the wonders outside their window. Books like:

National Trust: A Walk in the Countryside (3+) A wonderful outdoor adventure for toddlers. Elegant, educational and a great way to get close to nature.

National Trust: A Nature Sticker Book Hedgehogs, Hares and Other British Animals (5+). Sensational, sticker book fun. Put rabbits in their warren, fill the sea with dolphins and match babies with their mums. One to share and love!

The National Trust: 50 Things to Do Before You’re 11 ¾ (7+) #50things… Trending now and totally interactive, a pocket-sized companion with space for notes, doodles, leaves and pics. There’s even loads to do when it rains!

We think all of these are an absolute must for the summer holidays.

A Magical unmissable trilogy

Back in 2014 the first book in Philip Womack’s Darkening Path Trilogy, The Broken King (11+), was loved by our expert and kid reviewers. Sam Harper, age 10 said ‘This was an exhilarating, dark adventure which kept me hooked from the first page to the last word’. It was followed by The King’s Shadow and just out is the thrilling conclusion, The King’s Revenge.

Find out more about these magical stories full of powerful images and unexpected consequences that are perfect for those who love magical adventure and for fans of Susan Cooper’s The Dark is Rising.

Don’t miss these wondertabulous words

Dictionaries don’t come more fun than this celebration of Roald Dahl, his books and the joy he took in gobblefunking (i.e. playing with words, inventing new words and meanings).


Dahl had an extraordinary understanding of what children like and used onomatopoeia to create words full of sounds that children love to say: lickswishy, wondercrump, phizz-whizzing and of course scrumdiddlyumptious are all featured in this ‘extra-usual’ dictionary. In fact, there are almost 8,000 words, real and made-real-by-Dahl, mostly words featured in his books, some just there for fun. It will encourage children to invent words themselves and liven up their writing and with colour illustrations by Quentin Blake on every page, this is squiffling in every way. A perfect addition to Dahl’s centenary celebrations.

Out and About – Books that Move you. Literally!

We love books that inspire us to get out and enjoy the open air. There’s a whole host of them in our Out and About section which is well worth a visit at this time of year! Brilliant books for broadening horizons. Books like:

City Trail Books. London, Paris and New York (7+) – Off the beaten track trailblazers for the streetwise and inquisitive. See each city from a different perspective!

Ultimate Guide to Mapping (9+) – Adding skills to a sense of adventure, a fun-filled foray into finding your way around.

Little Collectors Animal Art (5+) – A one-stop guide to finding, observing, collecting and exhibiting your discoveries, from shells and feathers to animal tracks and trails.

Back to the Front. 100 Years since the Somme

Marking the Centenary of the beginning (1st July) of The Battle of the Somme, one of the bloodiest battles in British history, we’ve added an exclusive selection of books to our World Wars category, which aim to educate kids about a vitally important time in our recent past that should not be forgotten.

Over the Line by Tom Palmer (11+) – (Reading Age 8+) – Camaraderie, sacrifice, heroism and a love of football. Unique and brilliant.

Private Peaceful by Michael Morpurgo (11+) – Top title for secondary school transitioners. Compelling and incredibly relatable (many of the soldiers were teenagers after all), a vivid, atmospheric and moving account of the experience of war.

Make time for Pratchett

Most famous for his Discworld series for fantasy loving grown-ups alot of people don’t realise he was also a simply wonderful children’s author. We are big fans of his Bromeliad Trilogy for 9+ readers and The Shepherd’s Crown which is perfect for 13+ readers

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The Kids Are Alright! – Superfoods for Super children

Okay. There are a lot of faddy books for people keen to ride the wave of nutritional must-dos in this modern world of ours. However, here’s one that just makes sense, to us anyway. Superfood for Superchildren combines peer-reviewed scientific evidence with straightforward, mouthwatering recipes to help you provide low-sugar meals, free from refined carbs, to help you and your kids stay healthy, energised and happy.

More Summertime Kids Book festivals

Looking for bookish treats for the family this summer? The NEW Evesham Festival of Words (1-3 July) and Brentwood Children’s Literary Festival (22-30 July) are brimming with kids’ authors, the Chalke Valley History Festival (27 June-3 July) is bulging with living history activities and Hebden Bridge Arts Festival (24 June-3 July) is teeming with stories and storytellers.

And that wraps up this month at Lovereading4kids. We’re back next month with more top tips and expert recommendations to keep your kids loving reading. Scroll down to see more Summer Reading selections.

P.S. The Zoella Summer Book club has hit the spot for many teens and YA readers – we have seen a big uplift in interest – why not check out what our editorial experts think of the titles she’s selected. What’s certain is they are all great summer reads

Most popular children’s books, by age range on Lovereading4kids 12 – 19 June 2016

Monday, June 20th, 2016

Books for Babies and Toddlers

1
Pip and Posy: The New Friend Pip and Posy: The New Friend
Axel Scheffler
A charming new title in this best-selling series from Axel Scheffler. Simple but incident-filled stories for two, three and four-year olds. A gently funny story about navigating friendship and being kind, even when every bone in your body is telling …
Download free opening extract
2
My Dad Will Do My Dad Will Do
Martin Thomas
This child’s-eye view of the father-child relationship is very touching and will strike a chord in all families. Little elephant looks up to Dad – literally – and each spread describes something Dad can do because he’s bigger, whether that’s …
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3
Open Up, Please! Open Up, Please!
Silvia Borando, Lorenzo Clerici
Perfectly paced, and with very few words, this stylish and wickedly funny, interactive lift-the flap book with its rather tasty twist is sure to delight the very youngest of readers. I am a minibombo book: a little book buzzing with …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for Young Adults

1
Nightwanderers Nightwanderers
C. J. Flood
June 2016 Book of the Month From the Branford Boase award-winning author of Infinite Sky comes this smartly-plotted page-turner about intense friendship and discovering unexpected strengths.
Shy Rosie had “never had a true friend” until Titania – Ti – comes along. …
Download free opening extract
2
If I Was Your Girl If I Was Your Girl
Meredith Russo
June 2016 Debut of the Month Amanda Hardy is the new girl at school. Like everyone else, all she wants is to make friends and fit in. But Amanda is holding back. Even from Grant, the guy she’s falling in …
Download free opening extract
3
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

Featured Books for 3+ readers

1
The Detective Dog The Detective Dog
Julia Donaldson
June 2016 Book of the Month A celebration of dogs and books alike, Julia Donaldson employs typically sparkling rhyme to tell the story of Peter – a very nice child though he could have been neater – and his dog, …
Download free opening extract
2
Home Home
Carson Ellis
June 2016 Book of the Month Home – it could be a house in the country, a flat, a wigwam, or even an old boot. This beautiful book has fun with the notion of home and each page illustrates a …
Download free opening extract
3
My First Book About Nature My First Book About Nature
Felicity Brooks
Very attractive to look at, clearly laid out and including lots of questions for readers and suggestions for things they can do after reading, this is a very good first information book. It begins with a definition of nature and …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 5+ readers

1
The Secret Pirate The Secret Pirate
Elli Woollard
June 2016 Book of the Month Lil might look like an ordinary schoolgirl, but under her jumper and vest she’s a pirate! When the thoroughly rotten Stinkbeard arrives Lil flies into battle against him, because Lil is a pirate who’ll …
Download free opening extract
2
Wolfish Stew Wolfish Stew
Suzi Moore
Yikes but Wolfish Stew has a twist in the tale! Little Grey the rabbit has to be constantly on his guard as he skips through the woods, and must always keep watch for the bushy tail, not to mention the …
Download free opening extract
3
Would You Rather: Dine with a Dung Beetle or Lunch with a Maggot? Would You Rather: Dine with a Dung Beetle or Lunch with a Maggot?
Camilla de le Bedoyere
Would you rather dine with a dung beetle, drink with a mosquito, have supper with a spider or lunch with a maggot? Pick your answer and learn about bugs but be careful what you choose.  You could end up eating …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 7+ readers

1
How to Look After Your Human How to Look After Your Human
Kim Sears
June 2016 Book of the Month Though it’s primarily aimed at dogs, humans too – particularly those who share their home with a canine companion – will find lots to inform and entertain them in Maggie Mayhem’s comprehensive guide. Maggie, …
Download free opening extract
2
The Magic Finger The Magic Finger
Roald Dahl
The story of an unusual little girl who has magical powers. When someone makes her angry, she zaps a punishment on them with her magic, flashing finger! …
Download free opening extract
3
The Secret Railway The Secret Railway
Wendy Meddour
In three words: secret worlds – adventure – magic   There are echoes of Narnia in this exciting adventure which begins with two children finding a door into another world, not in a wardrobe, but in an abandoned workshop full of …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 9+ readers

1
The Accidental Secret Agent The Accidental Secret Agent
Tom McLaughlin
June 2016 Book of the Month – In a Nutshell: espionage – laughs – fake moustaches.
The story of a boy who accidentally becomes a secret agent, Tom McLaughlin’s new book is laugh-out-loud funny, particularly if, like its hero, you daydream …
Download free opening extract
2
The Wilderness War The Wilderness War
Julia Green
June 2016 Book of the Month – In a Nutshell: protest – friendship – the great outdoors
At a time when children are accused of disconnecting from the natural world Julia Green’s story of kids protecting their patch of wilderness is …
Download free opening extract
3
Jennie Jennie
Paul Gallico
Gallico’s story of a young boy who metamorphoses into a white cat following an accident is both an exciting adventure and a moving story of friendship. It is also one of the best books on cats ever written. As a …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 11+ readers

1
Dangerous Lies Dangerous Lies
Becca Fitzpatrick
Strong-willed Stella is the key witness in a murder trial and has been placed under police protection. After being given a new identity and forced to cut all contact with friends from her former life, including her boyfriend, Stella is …
Download free opening extract
2
Rent A Bridesmaid Rent A Bridesmaid
Jacqueline Wilson
June 2016 Book of the Month A fabulous, funny and moving story about the power of friendship from the mega-bestselling creator of Tracy Beaker and Hetty Feather and more recently Katy, the retelling of Susan Coolidge’s classic What Katy Did. …
Download free opening extract
3
A Stitch in Time A Stitch in Time
Penelope Lively
Julia Eccleshare’s Pick of the Month June 2016  Award-winning Penelope Lively’s classic story humorously captures the dreamy and imaginary world of eleven year old Maria. An only child, Maria is used to quietly observing the world around her. When her …
Download free opening extract

Featured Books for 13+ readers

1
The Crystal Run The Crystal Run
Sheila O’Flanagan
June 2016 Debut of the Month High-octane, high-stakes fantasy quest in which a teenage boy finds himself embroiled a world of warring lands and self-sacrificing teenagers.
At first, “gangly” Joe might seem an unlikely hero. The gripping opening scene sees him bullied …
Download free opening extract
2
The Book of Pearl The Book of Pearl
Timothee De Fombelle
June 2016 Book of the Month
In a Nutshell: Timeless fairytale • Eternal love • Lyrical quest
An enchanting, beautifully written novel about how first love can shape one’s life.
Joshua Pearl is from another world but has been trapped in …
Download free opening extract
3
Five Hundred Miles Five Hundred Miles
Kevin Brooks
June 2016 Book of the Month | Interest Age Teen,  Reading Age 8
In a Nutshell: mysteries – urban jungle – escape
With typical intensity, Kevin Brooks presents readers with a slice of the life of a singular young man. Cole and …
Download free opening extract

Evesham – All the fun of the Festival 1 – 3 July

Tuesday, June 14th, 2016

Evesham Festival of Words offers a fantastic day out for all the family on Saturday 2 July. The programme is jam packed with performances, workshops and events to keep both the young and the young at heart entertained the whole day!

2016 sees the first Festival of Words for the town and organisers have worked passionately to bring a mix of entertainment, information and amusement for festival visitors of all ages. The three day event opens on Friday 1st July, and Saturday includes a special programme, designed specifically with children and families in mind. This won’t be like school; the only thing the kids need to bring with them is their imagination!

 

Saturday’s fun starts at 10.30am when Roz Streeten, creator of the enormously successful Rosie Flo and Johnnie Flo colouring books, welcomes four to seven year olds to her ‘Make your own colouring book’ workshop. At 12.30pm, Roz continues the fun on the same theme, but this time for six to nine year olds.

 

When the colouring book is all done, make way me hearties and man the mainbrace to meet local children’s author and the Festival’s pirate expert, Julie Fulton. Ideal for children aged three to seven, Julie will regale her young audience with swashbuckling stories and piraty poems. The session will round off with a chance for everyone to get creative and write their very own pirate rhyme.

 

The morning workshops will have worked up an appetite and you are cordially invited to bring your own picnic to The Almonry Museum Garden, which is open to all festival goers and provides an oasis of calm in the hectic town centre.

 

After a well earned lunch, join children’s authors: Ann Evans and Karen King at Evesham Town Hall, for storytelling. The 2pm – 2.40pm session is aimed at children aged four to seven years and then our authors change pace at 3pm when children aged eight and over will learn how to develop characters in their own stories. Our two authors bring the children’s programme to a close with a 4pm workshop ‘Questions and Answers – Writing and Getting Published’. The workshop is suitable for anyone aged seven and above, so plenty of opportunity for mum, dad, gran or grandad to join in on this one.

 

Festival organisers Bottom of Form

ask that for everyone’s safety, children under seven are accompanied by an adult. Tickets for the workshop are available online at www.eveshamfestivalofwords.org or from The Almonry, Vine Street, Evesham. The Almonry picnic event is free of charge and booking is not necessary.

The 2016 Betjeman Poetry Prize for young poets aged 10-13

Tuesday, June 14th, 2016

Only 7 weeks to go till the DEADLINE on 31st JULY 2016

Now in its 10th anniversary year (huzzah!), the Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy will be sifting through your poems with her co-judge, the brilliant artist and poet Imtiaz Dharker to find the winner of the 2016 Betjeman Poetry Prize. Imtiaz and Carol Ann are looking for emotion, imagery and rhythm. Above all, they want to hear your voice. Play with words and write a poem about ‘place’.

The winner takes home £500 for their own pocket (and £500 for their school.)! Finalists read their poems in London at St Pancras Station on National Poetry Day in front of an impressive audience. The top fifty poems will be published in the 2016 Betjeman Poetry Prize Anthology.
You can enter online or by post. Or beg your English teachers to teach you how to do it and encourage them to enter the WHOLE CLASS. See betjemanpoetryprize.co.uk for past winners, writing tips, full prize list and entry details.

Have fun while you learn how to write poems with Betjeman Poetry Prize ambassador and celebrated poet Harry Man, who will be delivering his fantastic poetry workshops at the Feast Festival at Waddesdon Manor, Bucks THIS WEEKEND – Sat 18 & Sun 19 June

‘What It’s Like To Be…’ with Harry Man
One hour workshops at 12pm and 3pm

The tallest! The shortest! The strongest! The smallest! The biggest! The sweetest! The baddest! The most amazing magician in the world! Or what is like to be shy? Or to have curly hair? What’s it like to be YOU? We will be looking at ways to write about what makes us truly unique, and drawing some inspiration from famous characters who might give us some rather excellent ideas… Harry Man takes new poets through a 1 hour workshop exploring who we are, and what makes us so unique. Word games and writing exercises and surprising discussions abound. No previous poetry experience necessary!
Harry Man was Poet in Residence at StAnza Poetry Festival in St. Andrews, Scotland 2016. His pamphlet, Lift was published by Tall Lighthouse in 2013. In 2014 he won the UNESCO Bridges of Struga Award. He’s a 2016 Hawthornden Fellow and his next pamphlet is called Finders Keepers and is published by Sidekick Books.
This event is sponsored by the Betjeman Poetry Prize, a writing competition for children aged 10-13.

Brentwood Children’s Literary Festival 22-30 July

Thursday, June 2nd, 2016

The owners of the Chicken and Frog Bookshop in Brentwood, Essex are launching an annual literary festival for children (and their grown-ups). The first festival will take place 22–30 July 2016, and with 17 separate events to choose from, you’ll be hard pressed to narrow it down to just one! But with ticket costs heavily subsidized by the charity, the price of just £3 per event means that you can meet a favourite author or two or three, without breaking the bank.

 

The Brentwood Children’s Literary Festival has children very much in mind, with a cross section of authors and illustrators to suit ages from pre-school to teen. This is far more than a meet and greet festival, although you’ll get the chance to say hello and ask your chosen authors to sign books (available to purchase) on the day. Choose from Abi Elphinstone, AF Harrold, Giles Paley-Philips, Laura Dockrill, Nikki Sheehan and Sara Grant. Both Sara Grant and J.D.Irwin are going to be running writing workshops, David O’Connell will be leading a writing and illustration workshop and you can rest assured that all of the authors and illustrators will be on hand to answer your questions about their books and what it’s really like to create one.

Highlights include: the absolute legend behind Harry and his Bucketful of Dinosaurs, Ian Whybrow, will be appear on Friday 29th July. A lot of people who write books have nasty, dangerous, horrible things happen to them when they’re young. In that sense, Ian missed out. In 1989, while he was running an English Department he began to think seriously about writing something for children. Then he started running a Sixth Form. Several years later he decided to re-invent himself as an author and aren’t we glad that he did! Harry is famous the world over and a firm favourite for young children (and teachers, too). You are sure to learn how to roar like a dinosaur during the afternoon, so bring along your fiercest voices!

Undeniable ‘Queen of Tween’, Karen McCombie, is performing on Monday 25th July. The best-selling author loves writing, crisps, nattering and cats, in no particular order. With more than 80 books published and translated around the world, Karen is a busy, busy author, but never too busy to think of new ideas and appear at lovely events like the Brentwood Children’s Literary Festival. Karen will be talking about the inspiration behind brand new time-slip mystery ‘The Whispers of Wilderwood Hall’, as well as her evacuee novel ‘Catching Falling Stars’, which is set here in Essex.

Award winning author Nikki Sheehan is the youngest daughter of a rocket scientist. After a degree in linguistics her first job was subtitling The Simpsons, followed by a career in journalism. Her first novel, Who Framed Klaris Cliff? won the North Herts Book Award for 2015. Nikki is also a story mentor for Little Green Pig (part of the Ministry of Stories) taking story writing into schools in Brighton where she lives with her family and too many pets. You can meet Nikki on Wednesday 27th July.

For full details of what’s on offer, visit the website www.brentwoodlitfest.com where you can order your tickets at the click of a button or call 01277 230068


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