An audience participation style of picture book which should go with a wow at playgroups. By the way, the cat doing the chasing is Tom and the me being chased is Jerry. Subtle? I should coco!
Charlie Higson brings his comic genius to the picture book format and in doing so, creates a moral tale that has us laughing aloud. The book is published by Red Squirrel, a Barrington Stoke imprint.
Start off with a dear little puppy in a warm comfy bed, add loads more animals one by one, finish off with a tiny little mouse and guess what happens. A beautifully predictable cumulative tale. Aaaah!
Goat defends his position at the top of the pile of rocks against all potential invaders. Eventually, cold, hungry and alone, he invites them back in. Experiencing territorial issues at playgroup? Then this brilliantly simple book for is you.
Feisty heroine Daisy rides out to help the dragon that several hapless knights have failed to find. The illustrations are as good as the rhyming text. If you have a smartphone, you can scan the QR code inside the front cover to hear an audio version.
A celebration of journeys from one of our national treasures. Gillian Tyler’s gentle illustrations remind me of Allan Ahlberg and are a perfect accompaniment to the Rosen text. Beautifully produced, with a pleasingly bold font and dreamy watercolours.
Beginner reads & short chapter books
A short chapter book in diary format, aimed at 6 – 9 year old girls. It’s the first title in a new Owl Diaries series, and with full colour illustrations by Suffolk’s very own Rebecca Elliott.
First published around 10 years ago, the Titchy Witch series have been given a well-deserved make over. The Witch household, featuring Titchy and her mother Witchy, is more or less run by the suave (and practical) Cat-a-bogus, but Titchy Witchy is always there in the thick of it.
Fourth title in the Pets from Space series for newly independent readers, launched last summer with Splash landing. Funny, fast moving, packed with illustrations and just a tad silly – all good stuff for kids who’ve just mastered the art of reading by themselves.
Set in World War Two and dealing with bullying and Asperger’s, it’s by Jane Elson, who wrote the brilliant A Room full of chocolate.
11 year old Emily’s world changes forever when her best friend moves away and her parents have a new baby. Her search for a new BFF to plug the gap in her life forms the plot of this first book in a bright new series. An endorsement by Cath Cassidy is sure to tempt fans of this light-hearted genre.
Following the murder of his father, Georg is smuggled out of Nazi Germany to a worn-torn London, then evacuated to Australia where he lives for the rest of the war. A substantial book, well researched and very well written.
Highly recommended gem of a book encompassing environmental issues, peer pressure, family dynamics and politics with a goodly dash of theatre. In this novel, Hannah marshals her school friends to fight the water company planning to create a reservoir on the farm. Set to become a classic, it is a compelling read with credible characters.
Latest in the Tom Gates series – this one includes instructions for making a kite and a recipe for chocolate brownies, which is bound to be popular!
Liam feels drawn to a gargoyle on the village church; once he discovers that his grandmother had sketched the same gargoyle on a diary she kept as a child, he just can’t keep away. She has dementia now and lives in a care home, but Liam feels a connection to the child she once was, and tries to save her from her “demon” of dementia.
Fast paced, thrilling read that you won’t be able to put down. The main protagonist is agoraphobic and the gang of teenagers who seek him are vicious and determined. It’s as good as Bowler’s Night Runner from last year.
Looking for a nostalgic treat? Here in 254 pages charting the history of Ladybird books from their launch in 1915 are displayed a myriad of front covers to charm and beguile. To quote Peter and Jane, “I like this book.”