Looking for a brilliant read for a teen in your life?

Here we are, day 3 of my gift guide. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading them! It’s been a blast looking back at my year in books and thinking which ones I would recommend people buy and read AND SHOVE IN EACH OTHERS FACES *ahem*.

Today, on this here final day of recommending, I’m sorting through the MANY MANY YA books I’ve read this year and giving you 12 that you ABSOLUTELY need to buy for the YA fan in your life! (Just as the past few days, none of these books will REALLY come as a surprise!) Without further ado…

2018 ya recs

Scythe/Thunderhead by Neal Shusterman

The Exact Opposite of Okay by Laura Steven

State of Sorrow by Melinda Salisbury (while we’re at it… The Sin Eater’s Daughter trilogy too, LBR)

Goodbye Perfect by Sara Barnard (and ANY of her other books too)

More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera

Show Stopper/Show Stealer by Hayley Barker

White Rabbit, Red Wolf by Tom Pollock

The Secret Deep by Lindsay Galvin

Theatrical by Maggie Harcourt

Clean by Juno Dawson

Only Love Can Break Your Heart by Katherine Webber (and Wing Jones too)

Floored by the Floored Seven

TADAAAAH. You made it. This list could’ve been so much longer. GO AND BUY THEM ALL. READ THEM ALL. LOVE THEM ALL.

Do you agree with my recommendations?
Can you add any to my list?
Which of these books have you loved most?

Talk to me in the comments! Are you SHOCKED by my choices?

S x

“Which books should I add to my Christmas list, Miss?”

Yesterday, I shared 10 recommendations for emerging chapter book readers – check it out if you’re after recommendations for 6+ years! Today I’m sharing books that I’ve shared with the kids in my class, school and life! Today is the turn of those who are confidently reading longer chapter books – longer chapter books that are BLOODY BRILLIANT.

None of these books will come as a surprise to ANYONE who knows me, but nevertheless. I think one of the best books you can buy kids is a book. These recommendations are books I’ve loved, but also books that my kids have wholeheartedly taken under their wing!

2018 mg recs

(I know right, SHOCKERS)

Now, some of these are book 1 in a series that I would recommend the whole series of… but if I’d put ALL of the books in the series of, I would have been here forever!

The House with Chicken Legs – Sophie Anderson

The Polar Bear Explorer’s Club series – Alex Bell

A Place Called Perfect series – Helena Duggan

Armistice Runner – Tom Palmer

The Light Jar – Lisa Thompson

Tilly and the Bookwanderers – Anna James

The Way Past Winter – Kiran Milwood Hargrave

Snowglobe – Amy Wilson

The Nowhere Emporium series – Ross Mackenzie

Brightstorm – Vashti Hardy

The Storm Keeper’s Island – Catherine Doyle

Who Let The Gods Out series by Maz Evans (Simply the Quest reviewBeyond the Odyssey review)

And there you have it… my second lot of MG recommendations which are perfect to buy for any budding bookworm in your life!

Have you read any of these?
Do you have any favourites?
Would you recommend any for me to add to my list?

Let me know your thoughts in the comments! Come back tomorrow for YA recommendations!

S x

 

“You know books… can I have some recommendations?”

The amount of times I’ve been asked for recommendations over the past few weeks is LUSH. Whether it’s from my kids for what to read next, for parents on what to buy their kids for Christmas or from my colleagues on what to read, it’s all lush to talk books.

Over the next 3 days I’m going to collate 3 different lists for books I’d recommend – be it to read or to buy someone for Christmas!

Today I’m tackling 7+ (ish) recommendations

Tomorrow will be 8+ish and then Wednesday will be YA recommendations! There are LOADS of recommendations out there, I just decided to collate my favourite 10 from the past year (or so)!

If you have a reader who is just starting to read chapter books, or likes the look of illustrated chapter books, these books are brilliant.

2018 recs

Violet and the… series by Harriet Whitehorn

Fabio – The World’s Greatest Flamingo Detective by Laura James

Royal Rabbits of London series by Santa Montefiore and Simon Sebag Montefiore

The Truth Pixie by Matt Haig

Amelia Fang series by Laura Ellen Anderson

Max – The Detective Cat series by Sarah Todd Taylor

The Wild Robot series by Peter Brown

The Twitches series by Hayley Scott

Sam Wu series by Katie and Kevin Tsang

Horace and Harriet series by Clare Elsom

There you have it! 10 of the best books for Y2+ I’ve read recently. I’d love to know your thoughts! Let me know!

Have you read any of these?
Do you have any recommendations that I could add?
Which of these would you like to pick up most?

Talk to me!

Remember to come back tomorrow for recommendations for books for those 8+ years!

S x

S4S – Christmas books

IT’S CHRISTMAS EVE!

WHAT? HOW? WHEN DID THAT HAPPEN?

How excited is everyone? But seriously? I hope you’re all on the nice list. 

But anyway, the important things…#SixforSunday

Today’s category is quite simply:

Christmas books

So today I come to you with books I have asked for/bought myself/bought for other people for Christmas:

  1. Mythos – Stephen Fry
  2. The Magic Misfits – Neil Patrick Harris 
  3. It Only Happens in the Movies – Holly Bourne
  4. Paris for One – Jojo Moyes
  5. Du Iz Tak? – Carson Ellis
  6. The Creakers – Tom Fletcher

So there we go! 1 book I’ve asked for, 1 book I bought for myself and 4 books I’ve bought for other people! I’ll let you have a guess at which books are which! 

Don’t forget to share your#SixforSunday post on twitter and I’ll check it out! Thank you everyone who joins in! 

S x

Perfect Presents: Miscellaneous edition

Hello there!

I hope you’re enjoying my “Perfect Presents” series – it has been so much fun recommending books for everyone this year! I AM that person that buys EVERYONE a book. I have strong feelings about books and let’s just say that I think a book is the perfect present, so yeah… that! 

Today’s edition of Perfect Presents features a whole array of things, most of which could be classed as non-fiction. As a prolific fiction reader, it has been great for me to think about some non-fiction recommendations for everyone! From the kids in your life, to the teens, and the adults! Let’s get on with it!

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I can’t recommend some non-fiction without recommending this. I love Sarah Millican. I am a proud Geordie. I love an autobiography. This book is definitely on my Top Books of 2017 list – it’s just wonderful. Your mam will probably love it. Your sister probably will too. You’ll probably catch your dad reading it and laughing, despite protests that he wouldn’t read it. It’ll make you laugh, maybe cry (it made me cry): it’s just lush. 

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The next recommendations come from a set of books from the brilliant people of Quarto Books. Their ‘Little People, Big Dreams’ series is an exploration of some of the most incredible women the world has seen. These books give a biography of the women in a beautifully illustrated and accessible way for kids. I was lucky enough to be send 2 of these from Quarto and I adore them. If you can get your hands on them, get your hands on them. I can’t recommend these enough.

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Another incredible book, filled with exceptional stories about brilliant women that I can not recommend enough. Now that there is a second one too, I must get my hands on that! I did have a copy of Rebel Girls 1, but I can’t find it… so I must get back to Waterstones and purchase 1 and 2. 

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I love Dinosaurium – I see it everywhere on twitter and I reckon it would be a brilliant present for any of the dinosaur obsessed children in your life. There’s been a whole host of exceptional non-fiction books released this year that I don’t think you could go wrong with any of it! 

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This book is brilliant. At 28, it was incredible to read and learn things from this book. Hannah Witton so brilliantly deals with everything from consent, to sexuality, to sex in this book. It would be a great present to buy a teenager in your life, but also… adults. No shame in reading books which explore sexuality and aim to educate. I read this for a book group and I really enjoyed it. 

There are SO SO SO many others I can recommend that I will happily talk to you and give you recommendations! 

I hope you’ve enjoyed my Perfect Presents series! Let me know if you have any recommendations which aren’t on my lists. Also, let me know if you buy anything for anyone in your life based on my recommendations – that’s always fun!

Merry Christmas! Happy book buying!

S x

Perfect Presents #2

Yesterday, was the first of my “Perfect Presents” series! I hope you enjoyed my recommendations for brilliant picture books to buy! I would love to know if you have bought any of them for the little people in your life! 

Today’s perfect presents post is all about:

Perfect MG books

(Now this could be a LONG post, 2017 has been an exceptional year for MG books… bear with me!)

Christmas Dinner of Souls – Ross Montgomery
(review to come!)

“It’s a dark and lonely Christmas Eve in the dining room of ancient Soul’s College. The kitchen boy, 11-year-old Lewis, has helped prepare a highly unusual meal, made with unrecognisable ingredients, cooked by a mysterious chef. And then the guests arrive … and carnage ensues. For this is the annual meeting of a secret club for those who despise children, warmth, happiness, and above all Christmas. Each member must try to outdo the others by telling the most terrible, disgusting story they know. A spooky, shocking, bloodthirsty alternative to festive cheer that will appeal to, fascinate and delight young readers.”

Letters from the Lighthouse – Emma Carroll
(BOOKBLOG: Emma Carroll)

“February, 1941. After months of bombing raids in London, twelve-year-old Olive Bradshaw and her little brother Cliff are evacuated to the Devon coast. The only person with two spare beds is Mr Ephraim, the local lighthouse keeper. But he’s not used to company and he certainly doesn’t want any evacuees. Desperate to be helpful, Olive becomes his post-girl, carrying secret messages (as she likes to think of the letters) to the villagers. But Olive has a secret of her own. Her older sister Sukie went missing in an air raid, and she’s desperate to discover what happened to her. And then she finds a strange coded note which seems to link Sukie to Devon, and to something dark and impossibly dangerous.”

Who Let The Gods Out – Maz Evans
(while you’re at it, buy Simply The Quest too!)
(BOOKBLOG: Maz EvansBOOK BLOG: Maz Evans 1)

“Elliot’s mum is ill and his home is under threat, but a shooting star crashes to earth and changes his life forever. The star is Virgo – a young Zodiac goddess on a mission. But the pair accidentally release Thanatos, a wicked death daemon imprisoned beneath Stonehenge, and must then turn to the old Olympian gods for help. After centuries of cushy retirement on earth, are Zeus and his crew up to the task of saving the world – and solving Elliot’s problems too?”

The Polar Bear Explorer’s Club – Alex Bell
(review to come!)

“Join Stella Starflake Pearl and her three fellow explorers as they trek across the snowy Icelands and come face-to-face with frost fairies, snow queens, outlaw hideouts, unicorns, pygmy dinosaurs and carnivorous cabbages… When Stella and three other junior explorers get separated from their expedition can they cross the frozen wilderness and live to tell the tale?”

Father Christmas and Me – Matt Haig
(This is part of a series, buy all of them!)

“It isn’t always easy, growing up as a human in Elfhelm, even if your adoptive parents are the newly married Father Christmas and Mary Christmas. For one thing, Elf School can be annoying when you have to sing Christmas songs every day – even in July – and when you fail all your toy-making tests. Also it can get very, very cold. But when the jealous Easter Bunny and his rabbit army launch an attack to stop Christmas, it’s up to Amelia, her new family and the elves to keep Christmas alive. Before it’s too late . . .”

A Place Called Perfect – Helena Duggan
(BOOKBLOG: Helena Duggan)

“Violet never wanted to move to Perfect. Who wants to live in a town where everyone has to wear glasses to stop them going blind? And who wants to be perfectly behaved all the time? Violet quickly discovers there’s something weird going on, and when she meets Boy she realizes that the mysterious Watchers are guarding a perfectly creepy secret!”

The Bookshop Girl – Sylvia Bishop
(BOOKBLOG: Sylvia Bishop)

“This story is about a little girl named Property Jones, so-called because she was left in the lost property cupboard of a bookshop when she was five years old. Property loves living in the bookshop, but she has a whopper of a secret … she can’t actually read! So Property doesn’t see the newspaper article announcing the chance to win the Montgomery Book Emporium, the biggest and most magnificent bookshop in the world! When her family win the competition, Property finds herself moving to the Emporium, a magical place filled with floor upon floor of books and a very bad-tempered cat. But all is not at it seems at the Emporium and soon Property Jones finds herself in a whole heap of trouble.”

Nevermoor – Jessica Townsend
(review to come!)

“Morrigan Crow is cursed. Having been born on Eventide, the unluckiest day of the year, she’s blamed for all local misfortunes, from hailstorms to heart attacks – and, worst of all, the curse means that Morrigan is doomed to die at midnight on her eleventh birthday. But as Morrigan awaits her fate, a strange and remarkable man named Jupiter North appears. Chased by black-smoke hounds and shadowy hunters on horseback, he whisks her away to the safety of a secret, magical city called Nevermoor. It’s then that Morrigan discovers Jupiter wants her to contend for a place in the city’s most prestigious organisation: the Wundrous Society. In order to join, she must compete in four difficult and dangerous trials against hundreds of other children, each boasting an extraordinary talent that sets them apart – an extraordinary talent that Morrigan insists she does not have. To stay in the safety of Nevermoor for good, Morrigan will need to find a way to pass the tests – otherwise she’ll have to leave and confront her deadly fate once and for all.”

Just like I said yesterday, there are so many SO MANY incredible books out there for kids. Please buy the kids in your life a book. They’re so important and there’s some absolutely incredible books out there! Ask booksellers for recommendations, they’ll have some absolutely choices for you! 

Have you read any of these choices?
Are there any books you’d like to see me review?
Which book would you most like to receive?

Talk to me on twitter, or in the comments! I would love to know what you’re buying for the kids in your life (or even yourself!)

S x

S4S – Christmas books!

Hello!

Now that we are in December, I can be excited about Christmas books! AHHHHH. How are we all? Have we all done our Christmas shopping? Are you all like me and LOVE wrapping paper and ribbon but HATE wrapping?! 

Anyway, today’s #SixforSunday prompt is:

Christmas books for kids

(I’m not sure how many of these are Christmas, or how many are just wintery and snowy!)

  1. Jolly Christmas Postman (Bloody love the Jolly Postman, and the Jolly Christmas Postman makes my heart so happy!)
  2. The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe (not sure it’s Christmas BUT it is Wintery and therefore I class it!)
  3. Father Christmas and Me/A Boy Called Christmas/The Girl Who Saved Christmas (technically 3 books BUT they are INCREDIBLE. Matt Haig seems to be good at everything!)
  4. The Christmasaurus (I love this book! I have an original copy and then yes, I did buy a musical edition… no regrets!)
  5. How The Grinch Stole Christmas (I read this for the first time last year and I loved it! Jim Carey’s portrayal of The Grinch is brilliant!)
  6. The Twelve Dogs of Christmas (The publishers sent me this book this year and it’s lush!)

I would love to see your #SixforSunday books! 

Keep your eyes peeled on January 1st for the #SixforSunday prompts for 2018! I have them all ready! 

S x

December books

As December occurred and is now over I thought I would look back at some of the books I read, bought for myself and gifted. December is a funny month for me. There are still books I want to buy but I know that Santa is coming so I have to stop myself! 

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These are all of the books that I acquired in December (I decided to not show the picture books!). It is quite an impressive pile, even by my standards! What can I say?! I love all of the books!

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These 4 beauties I was gifted by Secret Santa people and my wonderful friend Aimee – my copy of Winter Magic is signed and it is SO WONDERFUL. I think I might be greedy and read it all to myself before I share it with the kids at school! I was very lucky to be included in the Maximum Pop Secret Santa and the SundayYA Secret Santa too and my secret Santas were so spot on with their book presents! I can’t wait to read them all!

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These 4 gorgeous books are ones which I read for #SundayYAthon (which happened between Christmas and New Year) for which there is a blog post for AND separate book reviews for them are coming… because I have ALL OF THE WORDS to say about them! 

Books are absolutely my favourite gift to receive and my favourite to give too! I gave away so many beautiful books this year, for my Christmas presents AND in my mystery box for work! I hope all of the recipients enjoyed their books as much as I enjoyed giving them!

Did you guys get many books for Christmas this year? My 2017 reading list certainly keeps on getting longer! This bodes well for my reading challenge of 2017!

S x

BOOKMAS: 12 Days of Christmas

Picture the scene… sitting by an open fire, drinking hot chocolate, some soothing music playing in the background and a festive favourite in your hand… how idyllic. Imagine something like this… (thanks Pinterest!)

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I can’t provide you with this scene… but I can provide you with a book to read as you IMAGINE that is where you’re sat, drinking your hot chocolate (which may have a tiny sip of peppermint vodka in!), listening to Christmas carols or something equally soothing… Thank you to my book fairy Sarah for sending it to me! It was VERY GRATEFULLY received.

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Beautifully illustrated, eye catching and a new take on tradition. A book that young, old and everyone in the middle will love. 

‘On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me . . .’

The V&A’s Twelve Days of Christmas is a stunning book filled with hand-picked patterns from the V&A’s collections. Featuring art work by William Morris and Charles Voysey, this is the perfect Christmas gift for any fan of art and design.”

Once again Penguin have produced a stunningly gorgeous book. Retelling the traditional rhyme of the 12 Days of Christmas with some absolutely gorgeous illustrations and patterns throughout the book. 

This book came at a perfect time for us at school as our school play this year is based on The 12 Days of Christmas, so I am going to take it in to school and make sure they all get the chance to read it before they do their performance. 

Thank you Sarah at Penguin books for this perfect start to the festive season!

Now where is my cosy fireplace, blanket and hot chocolate?!

S x