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New children’s books for July 2014

Written by · Published Jun 30, 2014

The Tin Snail by Cameron McAllister

Picture books

Why? by Tracey Corderoy

An excellent book to have at hand when grandchildren pull up all your flowers. “Why are these roots so long?” is just one of a book full of questions posed by Archie the baby rhino. Here are my other favourite Archie questions: 1. “Why do dropped things smash?” and 2. “Why aren’t you up yet?”. Children are so philosophical.

The Queen’s Hat by Steve Antony

A beautiful picture book set to become a collector’s item. With a colour palette limited to red white and blue, Steve Antony has created a stylish tour of iconic London landmarks in the wake of the queen’s hat.

Count the soldiers climbing the lions in Trafalgar Square, pouring over Ben Big or circling the London Eye and follow the hat to its final landing.

Max the Brave by Ed Vere

Max the kitten learns to chase mice but, as he’s not quite sure what they look like, there are plenty of opportunities for laughter and repetition. Another nice book from Ed Vere, following on from Hug and Banana.

Short chapter books

Feast Fight by Peter Bently

A nice dose of slap–stick in a new series designed to appeal to girls as well as boys. It should read aloud well.

Junior novels

Compton Valance: the most powerful boy in the universe by Matt Brown

Compton and his friend accidentally create a time machine then experience 2 versions of his 10th birthday. He meets several versions of his dad too, but as they live in the village of Little Hadron time is bound to get scrambled.

With clever jokes, disgusting food and comedic stereotypes, the plot twists, turns and fizzes through time and back again. Perfect.

The Tin Snail by Cameron McAllister

Set in France before and during the Second World War, this is the extraordinary story of Angelo, as he helps his father to design a new car for the people. The villagers who help dismantle and hide the car from the invading German army, show true bravery and resourcefulness.

This imaginative debut novel is a gripping adventure which manages to combine the history of rural France and an engineering landmark into a tale of courage, friendship and love.

The beautifully designed book will appeal to 2CV owners as well as older children.

The Dragonfly Pool by Eva Ibbotson

A novel set during World War II, the plot starts in London before the blitz and moves with the central character, Tally, to a gentle and inspiring school in Devon.

From there the action shifts to an international competition in Bergania, an Alpine state about to be overrun by German forces.

Tally, her schoolmates, their teacher and the other children they befriend, help the Prince of Bergania to escape impending imprisonment in Colditz, unwittingly condemn him to another type of imprisonment in England.

Eva Ibbotson has written a host of inspiring novels for children and this new title is set to join Journey to the River Sea and The Star of Kazan on that remarkable list.

Jo Dixon

I work for Suffolk Libraries Stock Team.