Best known for his comic raps, poet Tony Milton’s first novel is a crossover historical title:
“Ryo witnesses a lone warrior scare bandits away from the village in which he has grown up, and sets his heart on training to become like the hero he saw. He sets out on a journey to find his way in the world, and his encounters with the people he meets leads him to a true understanding of what it means to follow his dream.”
Published in a ‘super readable format’ by Barrington Stoke so readers with dyslexia and visual stress can enjoy it, this is a compassionate and distinctive tale of modern family life and its issues:
“Dads leave home all the time. It’s not that unusual, really. Leon’s dad walked out. So did Mo’s. But Archie’s? Well, that’s a different story - a story that Archie must keep secret at all cost. Archie knows he should accept Dad for who he is, so he hides his turmoil until he can stand it no longer. With nowhere else to turn, he finds himself at the railway track. The track has been calling to him, promising escape, release. The only problem is, it’s been calling to someone else too.”
Debut novel from Connie Glynn, aka YouTube star Noodlerella:
“When fairytale obsessed Lottie Pumpkin starts at the infamous Rosewood Hall, she is not expecting to share a room with the Crown Princess of Maradova, Ellie Wolf. Due to a series of lies and coincidences, 14-year-old Lottie finds herself pretending to be the princess so that Ellie can live a more normal teenage life. Lottie is thrust into the real world of royalty - a world filled with secrets, intrigue and betrayal. She must do everything she can to help Ellie keep her secret, but with school, the looming Maradovian ball and the mysterious new boy Jamie, she’ll soon discover that reality doesn’t always have the happily ever after you’d expect.”
According to The Bookbag, this is “an exceptional novel on a controversial and relevant subject today”:
“Olivia disappeared the night the blackbird died.
“It was New Year’s Eve the night that dead blackbirds descended, hours before 14-year-old Alex McCarthy’s sister Olivia went missing from a party. Committed to finding out what happened to her sister, within the previously safe walls of their subarctic Orkney village, Alex knows that dishevelled, sometimes intoxicated Detective Inspector Birkens is her best shot. Yet as they uncover the secrets behind Olivia’s last night, Alex starts to find things she may be better off never knowing.”
“1577. Queen Elizabeth I has imprisoned scheming Mary Queen of Scots, and Alyce’s mother is burned at the stake for witchcraft. Alyce flees to London - but as she discovers her own dark magic, powerful forces are on her trail. Soon she finds herself deep in a secret battle between rival queens.”
“When a lone soldier, Cole, arrives with news of Lachlan Agatta’s death, all hope seems lost for Catarina. Her father was the world’s leading geneticist, and humanity’s best hope of beating a devastating virus. Then, hidden beneath Cole’s genehacked enhancements she finds a message of hope: Lachlan created a vaccine. Only she can find and decrypt it, if she can unravel the clues he left for her.
“The closer she gets, the more she finds herself at risk from Cartaxus, a shadowy organization with a stranglehold on the world’s genetic tech. But it’s too late to turn back. As the pieces fit together it’s clear there is one final secret that Cat must unlock. A secret that will change everything.”
In the sequel to Spellslinger:
“It’s a few months since Kellen left the Jan’Tep people. Now aged 16, Kellen is an outlaw, relying on his wits to keep him alive in the land of the Seven Sands. He misses home, he misses family and more than anything, he misses Nephenia, who he once loved.
“Then he meets Seneira, a blindfolded girl who isn’t blind, and who carries a secret that’s all too familiar to Kellen. Kellen and Ferius resolve to help - but the stakes are far higher than they realise. A shadowblack plague is taking hold - and Kellan can’t help but suspect that his own people may be behind it.”
“Being a teenager is difficult enough, but having to go through puberty whilst realising you’re in the wrong body means dealing with a whole new set of problems: bullying, self-doubt and in some cases facing a physical and medical transition.
“Alex is an ordinary teenager: he likes pugs, donuts, retro video games and he sleeps with his socks on. He’s also transgender, and was born female. He’s been living as a male for the past few years and he has recently started his physical transition. Throughout this book, Alex will share what it means to be in his shoes, as well as his personal advice to other trans teens.”