The transition for children moving from Prep to Senior School can sometimes be a traumatic one. As many studies have found, reading is a great way for young people to relax and get out of their own headspace. With that in mind, Ms Akehurst our Learning Resource Centre Manager, has put together some wonderful reads aimed at doing just that. This list of 14 great books has been compiled to appeal to every reading taste – enjoy!
The Good Thieves by Katherine Rundell Genre: Adventure/Historical Fiction
It is the 1920’s, Vita and her mother have come from England to visit her grandfather in New York. It seems he has been cheated out of his home by a con-man with ties to the Mafia. Vita is outraged and formulates a plan to get justice for her grandfather, despite her physical limitations.
When she joins forces with an acrobat, a pickpocket and a horse-whisperer, she is sure her scheme will work but nothing has quite prepared this motley band for the dangers and challenges they will meet.
Hope Jones Saves the World by Josh Lacey Genre: Reality
Hope is a socially aware 10-year-old who complains to the local supermarket about excessive packaging. She and her friend Harry, begin protesting for change and before long they’re joined by lots of other kids – attracting lots of attention. Hope is ecstatic and she’s finally invited to meet with the supermarket boss but will the meeting be enough to satisfy her ambition to save the world!
Queens by Victoria Crossman Genre: Non-fiction
Over 3,000 years of incredible women who have ruled our world. From Cleopatra to the Viking queens, to Queen Elizabeth II. Celebrating strong, brave women from across the centuries and around the world, telling their stories of strength and resilience.
October, October by Katya Balen Genre: Real Life
Eleven year old October lives in the forest with her dad. She doesn’t go to school, preferring to live as wild as she can in the woods. One day, Dad is injured in an accident and October is forced to stay with her mum in London. To October, everything in the city is bad. Worst of all, October is unhappy living with her mum – all she wants is to go home. Gradually though, as Dad recovers, she starts to adjust to city life, and October lets her mum in to her heart – life starts to change for the better. Can October and Dad ever return to the wild and live as they once did.
The Extremely Embarrassing Life of Lottie Brooks by Katy Kirby Genre: Reality/Humour
Starting secondary school can be stressful especially when the whole class has started calling Lottie, ‘KitKat Chunky’ – she’s just about ready to die of embarrassment and she’s only just started school!
Things start looking up when she makes friends with Jess, then Amber and Poppy, the two most popular girls in the year. But navigating new friendships and a new school can be tricky – especially for the girl formerly known as Matey Mc Lobster Legs.
Malamander by Thomas Taylor Genre: Real Life
Young Herbert, lives and works at the Grand Nautilus Hotel. His job is to register lost things and try and find their owners. But his newest ‘lost’ item is rather different, a mysterious girl called Violet. Left at the hotel since tiny, after her parents mysteriously disappeared, Violet is determined to find out what happened to them but needs Herbert’s help. Following clues, things keep pointing towards the terrifying legend of the ‘Malamander’, an infamous local sea monster which Herbert would really rather have stayed a legend. Will the monster be the key to unlocking this strange mystery?
The Night Bus Hero by Onjali Raulf Genre: Reality/Humour
Hector is a bully who doesn’t really care about anyone, he likes to devote his time to being nasty to other kids and making them give him their sweets.
When a number of London statues are mysteriously stolen, Hector is convinced the crimes have been carried out by homeless people led by a local homeless man Thomas. – No sooner has Hector reported him to the police, than he realises he’s got it all horribly wrong. With the help of his arch-enemy and teachers pet, Mei Lei, Hector has a race against time to make sure justice is done – but that’s not the only thing he needs to change!
The Runaway Girls by Jacqueline Wilson Genre: Historical Adventure
Queen Victoria is on the throne and the Great Exhibition is about to open! Lucy lives with her father, the New Mother and the New Baby. They sent away her beloved Nurse and replaced her with a horrid governess. Lucy desperately wants someone to be kind to her, and to have some fun.
Kitty Fisher is a street performer who earns her living by ‘tumbling’. When Lucy runs away from home, Kitty shows Lucy how to survive – where to find the best picnic leftovers in the park, and which trees makes the best beds. Lucy learns quickly and shows Kitty her own skills – befriending families to get free meals and singing beautiful melodies for the crowds. But the streets of Victorian London are dangerous and soon the girls find themselves under threat from thieves – and even worse, the Workhouse!
Fearless Fairytales by Konnie Huq and James Kay Genre: Fairytales
Meet Sleeping Brainy whose ambition it is to be Chancellor of the Exchequer. And Robin Hoodlum who collects taxes from the poor for his boss—the billionaire Baron Bottybum. Or how about Trumplestiltskin, an angry, orange man with ridiculous hair who is obsessed with getting richer and richer?
An original and hilarious take on some classic fairy tales.
The Valley of Lost Secrets by Lesley Parr Genre: Historical Adventure
Jimmy and his little brother have been evacuated to a tiny village in Wales in WW2. After the hustle and bustle of London, it’s a bit of a shock. Jimmy can’t wait to get back home but when he finds a mysterious skull in a tree, he feels compelled to unravel its story. In a new village full of strangers, Jimmy has to be careful who he shares his secrets with, you never know who might be listening!
Pop! by Mitch Johnson Genre: Mystery
Queenie, a big fan of the world’s most popular fizzy drink, when a bottle washes up on the beach near her house. She discovers the bottle is special, it contains the top-secret recipe for her favourite drink. This is priceless information that the big corporation wants back at any cost! Queenie is so scared of what might happen, she decides to go on the run. In hiding, she comes to realise a lot about the world and the threats it faces. She also realises the value of friendship, and finds the courage to stand up for what is right.
The Castle of Tangled Magic by Sophie Anderson Genre: Fatansy/Adventure
Olia was brought up in huge castle that was once home to her royal relatives. Much influenced by her grandmother who is a great believer in magic, Olia has always known that she possesses the gift of using magic. So when the old palace comes under threat from a violent dark force, it is left to Olia to find the magical doorway that will take her into another land to seek help. In her quest she’ll need courage, imagination and friendship to embark upon her roller coaster adventure.
Brand New Boy by David Almond Genre: Sci-Fi
When new boy George joins the class, everyone thinks he’s a bit weird, but he’s brilliant at football and loves crisps, and that’s all that matters to Dan and Maxie. However, the truth about George is stranger than anyone could have imagined. Can his new pals help George to become truly free?
Into The Spotlight by Carrie Hope Fletcher Genre: Real Life
Three children, Marigold, Mabel and Morris Pebble are adopted by an eccentric theatre owner who the children call their ‘Brilliant Aunt Maude’. They all have very different interests. Marigold wants to be a writer, Mabel wants to work for NASA and Morris just wants to dance. However, the thing that unites them is their love of the theatre and so when they discover ‘their’ theatre is in danger of being closed down forever, they try and do all they can to save it.