Book Review, Middle Grade Fiction

The Clockwork Queen by Peter Bunzl

I love how Barrington Stoke historical fiction whisks readers away on wonderful journeys into the past. Without a wasted word, we find ourselves right at the centre of a new time and place. Peter Bunzl's The Clockwork Queen is another of these masterpieces. Eighteenth century Russia, Catherine the Great, high-stakes chess and Trojan horse style… Continue reading The Clockwork Queen by Peter Bunzl

Blog Tour, Book Review, Middle Grade Fiction

My Friend the Octopus by Lindsay Galvin ~ Blog Tour

"I wished I had three hearts like an octopus. Then maybe it wouldn't hurt so much if one got broken." Following on from the hugely successful Darwin's Dragons, Lindsay Galvin has done it again - a gripping Victorian mystery filled with natural history, art and the essential connection between animals and humans. My Friend the… Continue reading My Friend the Octopus by Lindsay Galvin ~ Blog Tour

Book Review, Middle Grade Fiction

The Titanic Tunnel by Glen Blackwell

Glen Blackwell has a unique approach to historical fiction for middle grade readers. Taking his readers back in time with his characters, children are able to experience what life in the past was like from a modern perspective. In The Titanic Tunnel, readers find themselves on that great ship, haunted by an ominous feeling. We… Continue reading The Titanic Tunnel by Glen Blackwell

Book Review, Middle Grade Fiction

Escape to the River Sea by Emma Carroll

In 1946, Rosa Sweetman, a young Kindertransport girl, is longing for her family to claim her. The war in Europe is over and she is the only child left at Westwood, a rambling country estate in the north of England, where she'd taken refuge seven years earlier.The arrival of a friend of the family, Yara… Continue reading Escape to the River Sea by Emma Carroll

Article, English Teaching, Reading

Contemporary Children’s Literature from the Developing Reading Comprehension Skills series

Contemporary Children's Literature for Years 5-6 & Years 3-4 are now available! Featuring some of the best recent middle grade publications, they are packed full of reading lessons that are sure to capture children's imaginations and leave them wanting to read more. Developing Reading Comprehension Skills is a series of eight reading comprehension books for teachers… Continue reading Contemporary Children’s Literature from the Developing Reading Comprehension Skills series

Blog Tour, Book Review, Middle Grade Fiction

The Hunt for David Berman by Claire Mulligan ~ Blog Tour

The Hunt for David Berman is a gripping middle grade novel about the adventurous spirit of two young boys who don't realise just how brave they can be. It's 1940 and 11-year-old Robert has been evacuated from London to his grandparents' farm in Scotland. He loves walking in his father's childhood footsteps - sleeping in… Continue reading The Hunt for David Berman by Claire Mulligan ~ Blog Tour

Book Review, Middle Grade Fiction, Young Adult

Middle Grade Spring Collection

The Case of the Smuggler's Curse by Mark Dawson (Welbeck Flame) Fans of middle grade mysteries and classic children's adventure stories will love The Case of the Smuggler's Curse! A ghostly figure on the beach, stories of smugglers and shadowy winter evenings make this the perfect book to curl up with. Something is going on… Continue reading Middle Grade Spring Collection

Book Review, Middle Grade Fiction

Resist by Tom Palmer

Tom Palmer tells a heart-wrenching story of strength, courage and sacrifice in a time when Nazis took everything. The reality of war-time life in German-occupied Netherlands is described with details that really mean something to young readers - family, friendships, giving up passions like dance and music, giving up a childhood to risk everything to… Continue reading Resist by Tom Palmer

Book Review, Picture Books

We Sang Across the Sea by Benjamin Zephaniah & Onyinye Iwu

We Sang Across the Sea: The Empire Windrush and Me by Benjamin Zephaniah and illustrated by Onyinye Iwu is the inspiring story of Mona Baptiste - a singer and actress born in Trinidad in 1928. At the age of 20, she travelled to England on the Empire Windrush wanting nothing more than to sing. She… Continue reading We Sang Across the Sea by Benjamin Zephaniah & Onyinye Iwu

Book Review, Middle Grade Fiction

Fagin’s Girl by Karen McCombie

Already a huge Karen McCombie fan, I couldn't wait to read Fagin's Girl. With Barrington Stoke's manageable length, accessible print and vocab, and incredibly high quality stories, this Victorian adventure is a must-have for Key Stage Two classrooms and libraries. Ettie's life has never been easy, especially since her father died, but on her tenth… Continue reading Fagin’s Girl by Karen McCombie