Posts Tagged ‘children’s book reivews’

Most popular books, by age range, 30 August – 6 September

Monday, September 7th, 2015

Books for Babies and Toddlers

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A Great Big Cuddle A Great Big Cuddle
Michael Rosen
Julia Eccleshare’s Book of the Month, September 2015  Children’s Laureates Chris Riddell and Michael Rosen combine here to create a beautiful collection of ebullient poems for the very young.  Michael Rosen’s close and affectionate observation of small children and the …
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Shh! We Have a Plan Shh! We Have a Plan
Chris Haughton
Longlisted for the 2015 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal – Shortlisted for the Little Rebels Book Award 2015 Awarding-winning Chris Haughton tells a big story in stunning illustrations in his near-wordless picture board book. The huntsmen are determined to capture the bird. Armed …
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Not Now, Bernard Not Now, Bernard
David Mckee
Two of our Guest Editors chose Not Now, Bernard – celebrating it’s 35th anniversary in 2015 – as one of their favourite books.
Sophie Mckenzie ‘This dark, rather depressing picture book opened my eyes to what was possible with children’s writing. …
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Featured Books for Young Adults

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Sophie Someone Sophie Someone
Hayley Long
September 2015 Book of the Month  Sophie Nieuwenleven’s story is shocking, so she tells it in the only way she can – in code, using random code worms to keep any nubby parkers on their togs. Sophie’s parents have been …
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The Rest of Us Just Live Here The Rest of Us Just Live Here
Patrick Ness
September 2015 Book of the Month   Daring, beautifully written, full of ideas that will bring the reader up short, The Rest of Us Just Live Here is a dystopian adventure that mocks dystopian adventures while acknowledging the genre’s power …
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Midnight Dolls Midnight Dolls
Kiki Sullivan
A return to the hot south beckons in this new episode of Kiki Sullivan’s moreish series, a sultry mix of romance and voodoo. Eveny Cheval has just come to terms with the knowledge that she is the latest in a …
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Featured Books for 3+ readers

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What the Ladybird Heard Next What the Ladybird Heard Next
Julia Donaldson
Julia Eccleshare’s Book of the Month, September 2015 Best-selling duo Julia Donaldson and Lydia Monks have gone back to the farmyard for a second adventure featuring the clever and resourceful ladybird! This time thieves Hefty Hugh and Lanky Len are …
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How the Sun Got to Coco's House How the Sun Got to Coco’s House
Bob Graham
As Coco’s parents tuck her into bed, far away the winter sun is rising on a polar bear and her cubs. We follow the sun as it skids ‘giddy’ across the sea, caught briefly in the eye of a whale, …
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Stick Man Stick Man
Julia Donaldson
Creators of The Gruffalo, bestselling author/illustrator Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler have created yet another bestseller with Stick Man and now the book comes in a beautiful new gift edition complete with a snow dome. “Stick Man lives in the …
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Featured Books for 5+ readers

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Thorfinn and the Awful Invasion Thorfinn and the Awful Invasion
David MacPhail
September 2015 Book of the Month  Thorfinn is a charming boy, polite, tidy and he makes a lovely cup of tea. Unfortunately, he’s a Viking and this particular skill set doesn’t do anything to impress his family or neighbours – …
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Ted Rules the World Ted Rules the World
Frank Cottrell Boyce
Frank Cottrell Boyce is one of our funniest, most inventive writers for children and his readers should always be ready to expect the unexpected; that’s certainly the case here. Ted’s birthday starts quietly – he finds his parents fast asleep …
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How the Library (Not the Prince) Saved Rapunzel How the Library (Not the Prince) Saved Rapunzel
Wendy Meddour
Wendy Meddour and Rebecca Ashdown put a clever twist on the Rapunzel story in this excellent picturebook. Rapunzel sits alone and fed up at the top of her tower block. Her friends urge her to let down her hair but …
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Featured Books for 7+ readers

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Pugs of the Frozen North Pugs of the Frozen North
Philip Reeve
September 2015 Book of the Month  Award winning author partners Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre head north for their latest adventure. Shen the cabin boy is abandoned by his shipmates when their ship is stranded in the ice. He’s completely …
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Tony Robinson's Weird World of Wonders: Pets Tony Robinson’s Weird World of Wonders: Pets
Sir Tony Robinson
Have you ever looked at your cat or dog and wondered about how they first came to live with humans?  Or what would happen if, instead of a cat, they were actually … a lion?!  Or whether your dog would …
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The Bolds The Bolds
Julian Clary
August 2015 Book of the Month  Comedian, entertainer and ‘national trinket’ Julian Clary now turns out to be a talented children’s writer too. The Bolds, his first book for children, is a real treat – a funny story with a …
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Featured Books for 9+ readers

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Witchmyth Witchmyth
Emma Fischel
September 2015 Book of the Month This second adventure for witchkid Flo Skritchett is likely to prove as popular as the first. A huge part of the fun of the stories is the parallel witch society Emma Fischel has created: …
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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 …
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Danger is Still Everywhere: Beware of the Dog Danger is Still Everywhere: Beware of the Dog
David O’Doherty
Dr Noel Zone is without doubt the world’s greatest dangerologist, and his books are required reading for anyone eager to avoid danger wherever it may lurk and, as we know from his first book, danger really is everywhere: toast, pets, …
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Featured Books for 11+ readers

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The Wolf Wilder The Wolf Wilder
Katherine Rundell
September 2015 Book of the Month  Wolves, wildness and freedom are at the heart of this thrilling story. Wolf wilders are employed to reintroduce wolves unfortunate enough to be brought up as pets in rich households back into the wild, …
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Listen to the Moon Listen to the Moon
Michael Morpurgo M.B.E.
September 2015 Book of the Month   A beautiful and captivating tour de force of family, love, war and forgiveness, this is a major new novel from the author of War Horse and Private Peaceful, Michael Morpurgo and is set in …
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The Blackthorn Key The Blackthorn Key
Kevin Sands
September 2015 Debut of the Month  Set in the uncertain, dangerous days of 1665, this is a thrilling tale of alchemy, intrigue and murder! Christopher Rowe is an orphan, apprenticed to an apothecary. He can be reckless, even disobedient – …
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Featured Books for 13+ readers

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One One
Sarah Crossan
September 2015 Julia Eccleshare’s Mega Book of the Month 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 …
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Thirteen Chairs Thirteen Chairs
Dave Shelton
A spine-tingling collection of fearful stories, cleverly framed by an equally chilling storytelling device. Twelve story tellers sit around the table leaving one chair empty and one story still to be told. Each lit only by a single candle, one …
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Goodbye Stranger Goodbye Stranger
Rebecca Stead
September 2015 Book of the Month  Rebecca Stead loves to set her readers puzzles: there are huge mysteries in her award-winning novels When You Reach Me and Liar and Spy and her new book, Goodbye Stranger also poses questions. Central …
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Lovereading4kids Books of the Year 2014

Thursday, December 11th, 2014

The end of the year is often a time of reflection. Here at Lovereading the staff and the Reader Review panel members have been doing just that on the novels they’d like to unwrap at Christmas had they not already read them!!! It is such a cracker of a collection that we thought we’d share it with you. Take a look below and guarantee yourself (or friend or family) a riveting read.

Lovereading4kids Staff Picks

A joy to collate and covering more tastes than a Heston Blumenthal banquet, our Staff Picks section is an A-list gathering of some of our favourite books of 2014, all lovingly chosen by our bright, bursting bowl of book-nuts. Pass the crackers!

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What is the Lovereading Readers’ Choice book of 2014?

A month ago we asked the children on our Reader Review panel to let us have their top 3 books of 2014; the top 10 choices then went to the public vote. All of them are fantastic reads and we can excitingly reveal the top 3 winners below.

1st

Awful Auntie

David Walliams (9+) Best-selling David Walliams is back on top form with Awful Auntie. Stella Saxby is the unfortunate owner of the awful auntie!

2nd

The Blood of Olympus

Rick Riordan (11+) Another awesome Greek mythology epic in the series from Rick Riordan.

3rd

Chocolate Box Girls: Sweet Honey

Cathy Cassidy (9+) The girls are growing up and learning to deal with new problems.

and the rest of the Top 10 were…

Lovereading4kids. Top 3 books, age range, 9 – 16 November 2014

Monday, November 17th, 2014

Books for Babies and Toddlers

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The Lion Book of Nursery Rhymes The Lion Book of Nursery Rhymes
Julia Stone
November 2014 Book of the Month  Every child needs a collection of nursery rhymes and this collection of favourites with their clear and unfussy illustrations makes an excellent starting point for parents and children alike. Helpfully, the rhymes have been …
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Mr Wuffles! Mr Wuffles!
David Wiesner
A cat story with a difference! When Mr Wuffles finds a toy space ship he can’t resist playing with it but, as he tips and tosses it, the results for the aliens inside it are very scary! Feeling motion sick …
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3
The Owl Who Was Afraid of the Dark The Owl Who Was Afraid of the Dark
Jill Tomlinson
This is one of the all time classics of young children’s fiction and this beautiful gift box set includes the picture book and an adorable true-to-character plush toy of Plop. A lovely, calming bedtime read with a wonderful uplifting finish. Perfect …
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Featured Books for 3+ readers

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Once Upon an Alphabet Once Upon an Alphabet
Oliver Jeffers
November 2014 Book of the Month  Award-winning illustrator Oliver Jeffers has created an outstanding alphabet book which goes far beyond the traditional expectations of such a book. In additional to each letter having its own, beautiful Oliver Jeffers illustration, every …
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The Cat, the Dog, Little Red, the Exploding Eggs, the Wolf and Grandma's Wardrobe The Cat, the Dog, Little Red, the Exploding Eggs, the Wolf and Grandma’s Wardrobe
Christyan Fox, Diane Fox
November 2014 Book of the Month  A deliciously funny version of the familiar story of Little Red Riding Hood. Cat tries to read Little Red Riding Hood, one of his most-favourite stories, to his friend Dog. But Dog is a …
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Rita's Rhino Rita’s Rhino
Tony Ross
November 2014 Book of the Month  A funny tale all about the joys and perils of keeping a pet in a flat when animals aren’t allowed.  How Rita manages to do this is brilliant and it makes for an hilarious …
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Featured Books for 5+ readers

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Where The Poppies Now Grow Where The Poppies Now Grow
Hilary Robinson
This moving poetic text matched with warm-hearted illustrations captures the lives of two friends and the parts they played in the enormous military campaign of the First World War. From their early days playing together through to their old age …
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Horrid Henry's Tricky Tricks Horrid Henry’s Tricky Tricks
Francesca Simon
This gift book of 10 stories is the culmination of celebrations for the 20th anniversary year for Horrid Henry, the nation’s favourite naughty little boy. Horrid Henry is a character loved by boys and girls in equal measure and this …
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Twit Twit
Stephen Cole
Poor little Twit is always having mean tricks played on him by his big brothers, Boggle, Bumf and Baffle.  One trick too far and Twit is left stuck in a hole where Norma the vole comes to is rescue.  The …
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Featured Books for 7+ readers

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Atticus Claw Learns to Draw Atticus Claw Learns to Draw
Jennifer Gray
November 2014 Book of the Month  A cat with a difference! Atticus Claw may look like any other tabby cat but, when some famous works of art go missing, Atticus Claw – once a cat burglar but now a police …
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The Matchbox Mysteries The Matchbox Mysteries
Sally Gardner
November 2014 Book of the Month  Jam-packed tales full of hilarity, excitement and fun but this latest in the Wings and Co. series from Sally Gardner, winner of the Costa Book Award 2013, and acclaimed artist, David Roberts is even …
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The Christmas Truce The Place Where Peace Was Found The Christmas Truce The Place Where Peace Was Found
Hilary Robinson
Amid the horror of the fighting in the First World War, there was one moment of unexpected and surprising harmony. On Christmas Eve 1914 the soldiers from opposing sides of No Man’s Land joined together in the singing of a …
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Featured Books for 9+ readers

1
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 …
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2
The Book of Storms The Book of Storms
Ruth Hatfield
November 2014 Book of the Month  Creatively chilling, this debut novel takes the whimsically charming idea of talking to animals and turns it on its head. Eleven year old Danny, with his new found link to an ancient and dangerous …
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The Imaginary The Imaginary
A. F. Harrold
November 2014 Book of the Month   A richly visualised story which explores imaginary friends and the very special role they play in children’s lives. Amanda and her imaginary friend Rudger have the best of times playing together. While Amanda’s mother …
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Featured Books for 11+ readers

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Awful Auntie Awful Auntie
David Walliams
Best-selling David Walliams is back on top form with Awful Auntie. Stella Saxby is the unfortunate owner of the awful auntie! Throughout her life, the dreadful aunt Alberta has squandered the family fortunes. Following the death of Stella’s parents, Alberta …
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War Horse War Horse
Michael Morpurgo
This special edition of War Horse commemorates the 100th Anniversary of the beginning of the First World War, and features a brand new introduction by Michael Morpurgo and cover artwork by Rae Smith, designer of the National Theatre’s production of …
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The Bomber Dog The Bomber Dog
Megan Rix
August 2013 Book of the Month – Shortlisted for the Red House Children’s Book Awards 2014, younger readers category.  The Bomber Dog is a gripping and heartwarming story for 9+ readers about a brave puppy who joins the paratroopers during …
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Featured Books for 14+ readers

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The Manifesto on How to be Interesting The Manifesto on How to be Interesting
Holly Bourne
November 2014 Book of the Month   Bree hides away behind her blog that few people read.  So, if she writes about things people do want to read will it change her life to one of excitement and popularity? That’s when …
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Atlantia Atlantia
Ally Condie
A beautifully tense dystopian read where deception and intrigue lurk at every corner. The author builds her story slowly but surely, settling you in to this very different world of an underwater city and allowing you to understand the processes …
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The Bane Chronicles The Bane Chronicles
Cassandra Clare
November 2014 Book of the Month Ever wanted to know why Magnus Bane is banned from Peru? Or what he got up to during the French Revolution? Or what he bought Alec Lightwood as a birthday present? This title features …
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October 1st email update

Thursday, October 9th, 2014

Did you know that it was in October in 1851 (year of the Great Exhibition) that Moby Dick, Herman Melville’s classic cetacean adventure, was published? True story. Well, we’ve had a whale of a time, hunting the literary high seas for the best in books for your pod of youngsters, an’ we reckon we’ve harpooned us some whoppers an’ all! Read on for more…

Oct-overwhelming! – Books of the Month

If you actually built a real bookshelf to house all the amazing titles we’ve lovingly gathered as our books of the month this month, it would stretch all the way around the world Twice, (well not quite!). Imagine the size of the library! This month we esepcially love:

The House of Hades and The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan (12+) 4th and 5th in The Heroes of Olympus series. Greek myth meets reality in these mind-blowing adventures with many of the characters from the Percy Jackson books. And Five Children on the Western Front by KateSaunders (9+). An action-packed, funny and thoughtful novel inspired by the classic, Five Children and It by E Nesbit it is a book to truly fall in love with just like the original.

The Hero Pup by Megan Rix (7+). Animal lovers will adore the uplifting, powerful narrative of Megan Rix’s dog-eyed view of a troubled world. The Crocodile Under the Bed by Shirley Hughes (3+). From the creator of The Tiger who Came to Tea, a magical new classic that they’ll read to their children one day. And The Further Adventures of the Owl and the Pussycat by Julia Donaldson (3+). Who better to take up this classic? Beautiful illustrations illuminate a charming adventure.

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October Free Prize Draws

Walker and Mumsnet have got together to produce a beautiful gift book of (prize-winning) bedtime stories and we are giving you the opportunity to win not just the books but also Limited Edition prints of the beautiful illustrations (by up and coming artists). We also have another 10 exclusive Lovereading Canvas bags (worth £9.99) up for grabs… surely this season’s must have accessory? Finally don’t forget to enter our Puffin competition where we have signed books and more up for grabs. Click here to find out more.

Who’s First? … Debuts of the Month

A good debut novel is a cause for joy, and we’ve a number to celebrate this month. Get out the bunting for:

MEGA DEBUT – A Little in Love by Susan E. Fletcher (14+). Mesmerising, atmospheric tale of love, sacrifice and redemption for the girls in les Miserables. Megan Abbott, said ‘Beautiful story, a must read!’ Also The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender by Lesley Walton (15+). Exquisite story of love and desire, uniquely told. Reviewer Isobel Read said ‘The characters are now etched on my heart’. And The Rise and Rise of Tabitha Baird by Arabella Weir (11+) A laugh-out-loud look at what it is to be a teenager.

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Books that Go Bump in the Night? Why, Yes, but ‘Witch’ one?

Enter, if you dare, our ghoulish, ghostly, goose-bump-inducing, Hallowe’en inspired section of books that will give kids of all ages a supernatural, spooky thrill… and have you carving pumpkins before the end of the month! We love:

Mountwood School for Ghosts by Toby Ibbotson (9+). Giggle-inducing, gruesome gallivanting from ‘not-so-good-at-ghouling’ ghosts. And Witchworld by Emma Fischel with illustrations by Chris Riddell (9+). A world of wizards, witches, ghouls and ghosts that isn’t so very different … from our own … hang about! Click below to see more of our Halloween favourites.

The Main Feature – Books that become Films

Last chance to read before your kids see the films. This month, look out for:

The Maze Runner by James Dashner (11+)
Adrenaline-pumping, mind bending, post-apocalyptic, epic that Hunger Games fans will devour. (film released 10October).

Hunger Games Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

“Quite possibly the best … novel for teenagers since Huxley’s Brave New World” The Times. (film released 20November).

Thy Kingdom Come – The Old Kingdom Trilogy by Garth Nix

Fans of the incredible, imagination-firing fantasy; The Old Kingdom Trilogy by Garth Nix (14+) have 2 reasons to jump for joy this month. The three original Old Kingdom titles are now available as eBooks, so the complex and magical fight against evil can be downloaded and carried in your pocket. Secondly, there’s a standalone prequel out. Clariel (14+) immerses the reader into the ancient and mystical world of the Old Kingdom’s crazy creature-filled landscape. Warning: if you read this, you’ll want all four!

No Referendum Required … Scottish Children’s Book Award

How nice to put politics aside and celebrate Scotland by diving into the rich pool of children’s writing north of the border. The awards are split into 3 age ranges: 3-7, 8-11 & 12-16, so there is something outstanding for everyone. See the whole field here and choose your favourites. Or put it to a vote? On second thoughts …

 

Are Books your Bag?

When do you first learn to love that “new book” smell? As a child, of course, in your local independent bookshop or library. So why not help support yours with a “Books are my Bag” bag. As desirable as our own Lovereading bag, this one has been designed by Tracey Emin for a nationwide campaign. There are loads of Books are my Bag connected events at bookshops all over the UK from 9-11 October. Click here to find what’s on near you so you and your kids can join in the fun.

Read on for the hand-picked selections in the age ranges you have said you want to receive. And don’t forget you can Login at any time if you would like to update your age range preferences.

P.S. Don’t forget 2 October was National Poetry Day – please do have a look at our special category.

February Children’s Book Update

Monday, February 6th, 2012

Yes, the days are short and it’s all a bit dull and cold but let us add some excitement and distraction, especially with school half-terms coming up, and the Lovereading4kids bookshelf full of new and brilliant books. Read on to find more.

Two Heads are Better … February’s Authors’ of the Month

Two brothers – both authors brilliant at telling great stories that really pack a punch in terms of action and

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adventure. Alex Scarrow’s Time Riders series follows the hurtling time-travel adventures of three kids who have cheated death in different decades. Brother Simon’s Gladiator series follows the fortunes of a young Roman slave forced to fight in gladiatorial combat. All their titles are reviewed on the website, with free extracts so you can ‘try before you buy’! Fans of Percy Jackson and of Harry Potter will devour them, but which are you going to try first?

February’s Books of the Month

There’s a wonderful array of page-turners for the Toddler to the Teen this month. For readers aged 9+ our MEGA book of the month is Gregor and the Marks of Secret by Suzanne Collins, the author of the blockbusting Hunger Games – a fantasy adventure for young Gregor and his talkative little sister Boots, in their perilous bid to save the Underland.

And while we’re talking MEGA books don’t miss Sword of Light by Katherine Roberts (11+). Book One of The Pendragon Legacy, it is an Arthurian adventure filled with romance, danger and courage… and a female hero, Rhianna, who just happens to be King Arthur’s daughter together with her best friend, Elphin, a Prince of Avalon!

There is Nothing Like a Dame! – Guest Editor Dame Jacqueline Wilson

We are HUGELY honoured and jumping up and down with excitement to have the multi award-winning Jacqueline Wilson as our Guest Editor this month. Creator of the infamous Tracy Beaker, Jacqueline is not only a Dame of the Realm and an OBE but a former Children’s Laureate to boot! Not only has she agreed to share some of her favourites with us, but her book, The Worst Thing about my Sister, a brilliant tale of the bond of sisterhood, is a Book of the Month right here! Click for more.

First things First – February Debuts of the Month

Four great first novels grabbed us this month:

Nature Mage

Duncan Pile

11+ Something a bit special the first in a new fantasy magic series packed with excitement, thrills perfect for fans of Harry Potter and Percy Jackson..

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Socks Are Not Enough

Mark Lowery

11+ Laugh-out-Loud cringe-worthy recollections of the teenage son of nudist parents who are ready to go public. This is one of our favourites!

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The Other Life

Susanne Winnacker

14+ Gripping, terrifying, and heartening post Apocalyptic father and daughter survival tale.

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Someone Else’s Life

Katie Dale

14+ A hugely gripping, roller-coaster of a story of family secrets, relationships and deceit – Jodi Picoult for teens!

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Winning is Believing! – Lovereading Competitions

Diary of a Wimpy Kid 5:
The Ugly Truth

Jeff Kinney

7+ 5th in the series and it has taken the world by storm, we are offering the chance to win one of 3 FULL SETS of Wimpy Kids books.

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Love Monster

Rachel Bright

3+ & 5+ by Rachel Bright – We have 5 signed copies to giveaway. It’s not easy being an ugly monster in Cutesville! Give him a good home …

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The Hunger Games (Film Tie-In Edition)

Suzanne Collins

12+ Suzanne Collins. The movie is due for release 23 March, and we have the books and film companion book to giveaway. Not read this brilliant trilogy yet… then get clicking now.

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Finally news of a great fantasy book that has been picked up by Puffin after it became a self publishing sensation. Keeper of the Realms, think Lemony Snicket meets The Wizard of Oz! Charlie Keeper has been forced from her home by a bloodthirsty and terrifying stranger. But in escaping she discovers her house holds the gateway to the Realm of Bellania – a place of myth, magic …and an evil Lord with a very bad attitude. Now its fate rests squarely upon Charlie’s shoulders. Game on!


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