Holocaust Memories

Each year, International Holocaust Memorial Day on January 27th prompts us to remember the horror of man’s inhumanity to man. But for the remaining 364 days of the year, there are many books which can keep this appalling event in our minds as a warning. From the fact - like The Diary of Anne Frank - to fiction - such as The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas - young readers are offered many insights into life for children from Nazi-occupied countries during World War II. However, rarely is a childhood memoir so powerful that it stays with you forever afterwards. Somewhere There is Still a Sun (Aladdin) is such a book. This is Michael (Misha) Gruenbaum’s own story, recalling the events eighty years a

The Wizardry of Oz

Australian novels for young readers aren’t too common here in the UK, but three which the Australian independent publisher Allen & Unwin has published over the last two years have made it to our shores, and deserve keen attention here. Allen & Unwin is the last remnant – but a healthy, revered and ambitious one – of George Allen and Unwin, the once prestigious British parent firm, noted for the quality of the writing it published, from Ruskin to Dahl and Tolkien. These three 2017/18 novels continue a great tradition. Ursula Dubosarsky is a multiple award winner for her writing for young people, and her middle-grade novel The Blue Cat shows us just why. Set in wartime Sydney, it tells the

Early Readers

Introducing two fantastic sets of books for early and emerging readers to enjoy from Bloomsbury and an equally brilliant set from Maverick Arts - all are complementary to one another and should easily find themselves a home on any bookshelf accessible to children. Maverick Early Readers is a banded book series with brightly coloured stars subtly located on the back cover to indicate the level of each book. Choose from Pink, Turquoise, Purple or White depending on your reader’s ability and comprehension levels. The bands follow the Institute of Education scale and are applied according to the difficulty that the text presents. In addition, consideration is given to the style of the languag

Dreaming Big

Dream Big, Little Leader is the board book hoping to inspire the youngest children to aim for their biggest dreams. Perhaps, it hopes, they can be the leaders of tomorrow. We need our children to have big dreams and aim high. We need to find ways to nurture and encourage their dreams, helping them to become a reality. This delightful board book by Vashti Harrison encourages little ones to look back to who has come before them. First, they should reach for the stars - just as Mae Jemison, Bessie Coleman and Katherine Johnson did. Perhaps they might want to be bold, using their voices to be heard. They could use their skills in sport, to help others, or to be creative. Whatever they decide to

New Historical Fiction from Barrington Stoke

Barrington Stoke’s latest publications are three incredible novels, all based on true stories. An accessible story for readers of any age can be found in this trio! Sophie Takes to the Sky imagines the first balloon flight of France’s Official Aeronaut (and one of the first woman aeronauts!), Sophie Blanchard, born 1778. Author Katherine Woodfine describes a little girl frightened of everything, only to overcome her fears by visiting a fair where she sees a demonstration of the latest technology innovation: a hot-air balloon. However, Sophie not only sees the balloons, but flies one too... Briony May Smith’s illustrations beautifully capture the scene and character of Sophie. Part of the Lit

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