Bank Holiday Book Tag

Hello friends!

It is Bank Holiday Monday (the final bank holiday of the year if my memory serves me correctly!?) and as usual, I am taking on my friend Cora’s Bank Holiday Book Tag. I think I’ve joined in on this like 4 or 5 times now (maybe more, maybe less, I’ll link some of my other blog posts for this tag at the bottom!). 

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To try and keep things fresh (lol), I’ll try and mention books I’ve read recently (let’s say in the last few months) or books on my TBR!

So what does a typical bank holiday look like?

Have a lie in. Which book could you lounge in bed with all morning?

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The Lost Tide Warriors by Catherine Doyle. This was just an absolute pleasure to read. There’s magic, adventure, friendship, memories: it’s got it all! It would be the perfect read to snuggle up with in bed (especially if it’s raining… that would add to the atmosphere of this book!)

Oh my goodness! It’s actually sunny outside! Which book makes you feel optimistic?

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I, Cosmo by Carlie Sorosiak.
Another MG book I read recently and it’s SUCH a gorgeous story. Cosmo is a wonderful doggo who wants to do everything to keep his family together. The ending is wonderfully done and it’s the perfect mix of love, hope and family. 

Spend some time outdoors. Which book reminds you of nature?

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Shadowscent by P.M.Freestone.
I don’t know WHY this was the one I chose, but nature and perfume go together wonderfully. There’s some incredible descriptions in this book of nature and it’s scents which make up the perfumes. (I need the second book in this series because I MISS THIS LAND).

Make some punch. Which book do you find difficult to classify in one genre?

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The Deathless Girls by Kiran Milwood-Hargrave.
Now, let me tell you it isn’t a BAD thing that I find it hard to classify: it’s a total compliment. This book is a hard one to stamp down because it is SO BLOODY BRILLIANT. This is a book that will appeal to so many people who read so many different ranges of books. (If you haven’t read it yet, please go get it when it’s out!)

Pass around some food. Which book do you want to share with everyone?

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All The Things We Never Said by Yasmin Rahman.
I got this at YALC after hearing her talk about it and I devoured it WHOLE on the train home from London a few days later. This book at times was a HARD read, but I think it is such an important book as it deals with some things that are very real. Plus, Yasmin is WONDERFUL. You need to read this book if you haven’t yet. I haven’t managed to form my words about this book into a review yet because every time I try, I can’t manage to say anything which does this book justice.

Light the BBQ. Which book took a while to get going?

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The Girls by Emma Cline.
It’s not in my usual MG/YA comfort zone, so I found it a bit slower than other books I read, but it’s good. It’s a complex read, but would be great if you’re a fan of a cult book. (I LOVE A CULT BOOK, PLEASE HIT ME UP WITH YOUR RECOMMENDATIONS PALS)

Failed BBQ. Which book ultimately disappointed you?

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Two Can Keep A Secret by Karen M. McManus.
NOW, don’t get me wrong, this isn’t a BAD book… but following on from One of Us Is Lying, it had big boots to fill! I didn’t hate it: I just wanted a bit more. (I can’t WAIT for One of Us is Next…)

It’s raining… of course! Which book is perfect to curl up with when it’s raining outside?

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Sanctuary by V.V.James.
MATES. GET READY FOR THIS. This book is EXCEPTIONAL. It is SUCH a rollercoaster… I can’t quite talk about it yet without needing SPOILER WARNINGS all over. Just know it is excellent: sun, rain, snow, wind. READ IT.

Let’s just eat chocolate. Which book is just super sweet?

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Five Feet Apart by Rachael Lippincott
My friend Rachel has been talking about this book for AGES and it’s been sitting in my TBR box for a while, so I decided to pick it up recently… and OH MY GOSH THE FEELS. This was a lush read… it did make me cry quite a lot. I love Will with all of my heart. If you’re a fan of TFIOS, you’ll love this! 

And there you have it! The Bank Holiday Book Tag. I hope whatever you are doing with your bank holiday, you are having a lovely day! Maybe you’re reading a book, maybe you’re going for a walk… whatever it is, I hope you have a wonderfully relaxing!

If you wanna have a go at this, go for it! Check out Cora’s post (linked above) for the list of prompts and such like! Below are 2 links to my previous answers to this tag!

The Bank Holiday Tag

Bank Holiday Book Tag

See you all soon,

S x

Best of 2018: MG edition

It’s time! It is the end of 2018 and here comes my “best of the year” series! 

For books to be considered in the “best of 2018” series, I had to have read them in 2018. So this discounts some of my favourite 2018 releases…

Today’s best of series takes on:

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Just like yesterday, they aren’t in any real order. I’ll link to any reviews I’ve posted but I’ll give a short review!

Pages and Co – Tilly and the Book Wanderers: Anna James

Story telling at it’s absolute finest. Absolutely brilliant. I want to be a kid again to fall in love with this over and over. 

Beyond the Odyssey: Maz Evans

Love Greek Gods? Love having your heart ripped out? Love laughing? You’ve got yourself a winner here!

The Storm Keeper’s Island: Catherine Doyle

I fell in love with this very quickly. I love the idea of the magic in this book. Just lush.

Rooftoppers: Katherine Rundell

I don’t know how I hadn’t read this book before this year, but my GOD it is exceptional. I just devoured it. With a romantic setting like Paris and characters like this, you can’t go wrong!

The Wild Robot: Peter Brown

I LOVE Roz with all of my heart. This book is a WONDERFUL mix of Science, frienship, charm and wit. 

The Truth Pixie: Matt Haig

Guys. This book though. It made me WEEP. It’s so incredibly important. PLEASE get this read if you can.

The Nowhere Emporium: Ross Mackenzie

This is another one I’m not sure how I slept on it so long, but when I read it, it changed the game. I did a WHOLE 4 weeks of work on this book. The kids loved it just as much as me. I love this book.

The Way Past Winter: Kiran Milwood Hargrave

Oh man. This book is like the perfect wintry book. This book is one of those brilliant ones that deals with kindness – to yourself, each other and to the world. I absolutely loved the world that this book was written in. 

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

I ADORE this series. It’s so much fun. Rabbits are the ones who are secretly on the lookout for the queen? Secret service rabbits with rats as their enemies? This is one of the many brilliant series to come from 2018.

Sam Wu is NOT afraid of Ghosts: Katie and Kevin Tsang

Brillaintly funny with exceptional illustrations from Nathan Reed! I adore these books in that laugh out loud way. Like Royal Rabbits, the Sam Wu series is another brilliant one to come from 2018.

THERE WERE SO SO SO MANY MORE that could have been on the list. I read SO many incredible MG books in 2018. I can’t wait to see what 2019 has in store, 2018 has set the bar PRETTY high. 

A massive thank you to all of the brilliant publishers who have sent me books this year. You guys are amazing. I love reading your books and then passing them on to my kids! 

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

 

S4S – Authors I’d love to see collaborate…

STOP, COLLABORATE AND LISTEN! 

Hello there! Wecome to another installment of #SixforSunday! This week sees me take on something that took an AWFUL LOT OF THOUGHT. Mainly because I needed to get it right. And I didn’t want to miss out anyone who I loved. Mainly, I have too many choices! 

Today we take on:

Authors you’d love to see collaborate

Now… the majestic book that is Floored came along and saw many of my faves ACTUALLY collaborate in an EPIC way, so if you’ve not got on that yet, I’d really like you to. 

  1. Melinda Salisbury and Sara Barnard
    This is a YA collab I will shout about forever. LADIES I NEED THIS TO HAPPEN. (C’mon, none of you will be surprised by this at all)
  2. Kiran Milwood Hargrave and Piers Torday
    I think this MG book would break my heart and be the most beautiful book ever!
  3. Sara Barnard and Alice Oseman
    This one literally just came to my brain and I think my brain is a genius. I think this could be such a brilliant combination!
  4. Sara Barnard and Laura Steven
    GUYS. I need this to happen… I just think these 2 would boss a YA contemporary that punched me in the face and made me cackle with laughter.  
  5. Maz Evans and Lisa Thompson
    I just think this would be a BRILLIANT MG book pairing… happy to read WHATEVER!
  6. Melinda Salisbury and Alice Broadway
    I think this would be such a brilliant meeting of minds… 

So if there’s anyone reading this who can make these things happen, that’d be amazing thanks!

Remember to share your #SixforSunday posts with me and I look forward to going “OMG YES THAT WOULD BE A MINT PAIR THANKS!” at all of your suggestions! 

S x 

S4S – Ultimate panels

Hello everyone!

Sorry for the hiatus this week… there was just a little need for my brain to take a break after a very busy half term! I am back though! And today’s #SixforSunday sees me taking on:

Dream panels/events

So, my dream panels? WELL THIS IS GONNA BE FUN. I’m gonna go 3 MG and 3 YA because LOVE.

“Contemporary YA: Why it matters” with Laura Steven, Alice Oseman, Sara Barnard and Katherine Webber.

“Writing badass characters” featuring Leigh Bardugo, Melinda Salisbury, Alice Broadway and Alwyn Hamilton.

“Writing stories that make our readers cry (we love it)” featuring C.G.Drews, Karen Gregory, Lisa Healthfield and Adam Silvera.

“Creating worlds kids want to read about” featuring Helena Duggan, Maz Evans, Ross Mackenzie and Kiran Milwood Hargrave.

“Writing incredible characters” featuring Peter Brown, Lisa Thompson, Alex Bell and Jessica Townsend.

“Books: an ode to books” featuring Anna James and Piers Torday in conversation.

Side note: I am still waiting for a Floored Seven panel

There we go! I LOVE hearing authors talk about their books, so please GET ME MORE EVENTS IN THE NORTH. I’m more than happy to host any of these *wink*

Remember to share your dream panels using #SixforSunday! I can’t wait to see what you all think! 

S x 

Blackout poetry

To coincide with National Poetry Day, we celebtrated at school with Poetry Week, where our English lessons all centred around poems. We in Year 5 had already done a week of poetry (it’s what I started the year with), so when it came round the celebrating Poetry Week, the kids were enthused to say the least! They have boundless energy about everything, with poetry being no exception. We have tried to incorporate poetry into EVERYTHING… I am often asked “Miss, can I write a poem?” and I always encourage this… write creatively my friends!

One thing I’d seen flying around the internet in particular was blackout poems. I was a bit tentative to start and thought long and hard about how we could POSSIBLY make it happen. After mulling it over since the beginning of the year, (I had wanted to do it during out first week) I bit the bullet and started to plan a one off lesson as part of our school Poetry Week.

To the kids, I posed the question

“What do you think blackout poetry is?”

and we got some brilliant answers:

  • It’s a poem that describes the night
  • It’s a poem about the war
  • A poem that’s only made up of black and white pictures
  • A poem written on black page and the writing is made of only white words

Then, I showed them some examples that I found on Google:

Their reactions were amazing. They were astounded by these, with one boy saying “Miss, they’re not even poems“. We talked about what the poems might be about just on first glance and talked about how we knew that.

Then I explained to them their task: they were given a page of our class novel Girl of Ink and Stars by Kiran Milwood Hargrave and they had to create their own piece of blackout poetry based on the page they were given. They had to think about the words they chose and the illustrations which they paired with the words. Some of the children struggled at first, but once they’d had some time to reflect and look at the models again, they had a very good go.

In a one hour lesson, we didn’t all finish. Some of the children were so enthused and loving it so much they even wanted to stay in at lunchtime to finish! I’ve made time next week for them to finish, as I think the finished products will just look incredible.

Here is an example of 4 of the finished ones. I can’t wait to see them all when they’re finished!

Once they’re all finished, I’m going to make them into a book!

My Year 5 class LOVED this and the finished products look amazing. This is definitely going to be a lesson that stays in my arsenal for my future poetry lessons!

Did you enjoy that tale from my classroom?
Do you want to see what else we get up to in Year 5?
Have you any requests for things to see?

Let me know your thoughts on the poems so far, my kids would love feedback!

S x

BOOK BLOG: Kiran Milwood Hargrave

The Way Past Winter: a truly magical story about the importance of kindness – to the world and each other

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“Mila and her sisters live with their brother Oskar in a small forest cabin in the snow. One night, a fur-clad stranger arrives seeking shelter for himself and his men. But by the next morning, they’ve gone – taking Oskar with them. Fearful for his safety, Mila and her sisters set out to bring Oskar back – even it means going north, crossing frozen wild-lands to find a way past an eternal winter”

(This review took me so long to write because it only said “I LOVED THIS BOOK OK?”)

I am a MASSIVE fan of Kiran’s work. Like massive. I think Girl of Ink and Stars is one of my favourite books I’ve read in the past few years. I just can’t get enough, and I’m very lucky in that my class have chosen it as our first class read for September. I can’t wait to introduce them to Kiran’s magical writing and watch them fall in love with it like I did. 

When I heard that there was going to be MORE from Kiran, I knew I needed to get my hands on a copy. I was very lucky in that I got a copy from the publishers (thank you Chicken House!) and it jumped straight to the top of my TBR list (not sorry to the rest of the books on my list). I was at YALC with some friends and I definitely might’ve been a bit anti-social and ignored them to read… but when it’s a book you’ve been waiting THIS LONG for… it’s OK. 

The Way Past Winter is an incredible tale of Mila and her siblings, who live in a world of snow and cold – there’s no Spring where they live. One day, mysterious strangers appear at Mila’s door, looking for shelter. When Mila wakes up the next morning, she finds that these mysterious men are gone and have taken with them her brother, Oskar. There is much debate around Oskar’s disappearance as to whether it is because he was taken or he chose to leave – with Mila believing he wouldn’t choose to leave. Mila goes on an incredible journey to rescue her brother. Her journey takes her to places she’s never been, with people she must learn to trust.

The settings in this book are sublime. From Mila’s cabin, which she lives in with her siblings, to the mystical tree, to the frozen landscapes that Mila must travel over in order to rescue her brother. I read this book in the HEIGHT of heatwave, yet I felt like I was in the sled with Mila, travelling through these icy lands. This book is so immersive, it’s like reading and seeing in surround sound (I don’t know how to word that better, I hope you know what I mean!). I would not survive in these conditions. Not at all. 

The feeling of magic and mythology is something about Kiran’s books that I absolutely adore and this book is yet another where she does it so beautifully. There’s an incredible feel of mythology about this book that I can’t quite put into words. It sings in its lushness – in comparison to the bleakness of the land Mila lives in. 

There’s messages galore in this book that I think are dealt with so incredibly well. This is a story about believing in yourself, being kind to the world around us and trusting that others can do good. 

I couldn’t put this book down. The pace of this book is spot on. It’s not too quick, not too slow – it moves smoothly, but with a hint of haste. I was on the edge of my seat for the majority of my time reading. I needed to know what was going to happen, but I didn’t want to miss any of the little details or the incredible vocabulary. The way Kiran writes is lyrical, beautiful and magical.

I know that 10 year old me would’ve devoured these books and absolutely adored them (almost as much as 29 year old me does). Kiran’s books sit so beautifully in classroom/school libraries because they’re stories children want to read, written in a way which appeals to them. They’re magical and true escapism – we all need a good escape when we’re reading.

And yes, it did make me cry. 

My goodreads review:

Kiran continues to write worlds that are equal parts magical, foreboding and welcoming, with characters who match. I absolutely adored this book – from the mysterious Rune, to fierce and brave Mila, and stubborn and protective Sanna. I just think this book is wonderfully perfect. Kiran never fails to blow me away.

I have so much to say about this book. There are so many things I want to tell you. So much I need you to know. This book just oozes brilliance – from the characters, to the settings, to the meaning. I can’t recommend this enough for everyone. It is just magnificent. 

Have you read anything by Kiran?
Would you survive in a place that had no Spring?
DO YOU ALSO LOVE THIS COVER THOUGH?

The Way Past Winter is out on October 4th, published by Chicken House books.

It is available to preorder! You can preorder Amazon or Waterstones (it’s probably available elsewhere too!)

Follow Kiran on twitter: @Kiran_MH

S x

 

S4S – Autobuy authors

Hello Sunday! Hello #SixforSunday pals. 

How are we all today? 

Today on #SixforSunday, we are talking:

Authors I will always pick up

Now… I’m technically going to do 2 #SixforSunday posts in one here… 6 YA authors, and 6 MG authors. (Hey, I’m the creator of #SixforSunday, I can bend the rules!)

6 YA authors that are automatic buys:

  1. Melinda Salisbury (I KNOW! WHAT A SHOCKER!)
  2. Sara Barnard (again… WHO AM I?)
  3. Alwyn Hamilton 
  4. Katherine Webber
  5. Alice Broadway
  6. Alice Oseman

6 MG authors that are automatic buys:

  1. Maz Evans (I bet you didn’t see that coming!)
  2. Lisa Thompson
  3. Katherine Rundell
  4. Ross Montgomery
  5. Kiran Milwood-Hargrave
  6. Abi Elphinstone

Shout out to Matt Haig too… who doesn’t fit into these 2 categories, but who is 1100% an auto-buy in my life.

None of these names will come as a surprise to long time, or even short time, followers of my blog! 

Remember to share your #SixforSunday post with me on twitter! I’m loving all of the posts! Thanks guys!

See you next week for Authors who surprised you!

S x

 

“Miss, are your our main teacher?!”

“Miss, are you our main teacher? There won’t be someone else teaching us all the time? Will it be you?”

Why yes, yes kids I am your main teacher!
I MADE IT.
I QUALIFIED.
I HAVE MY OWN CLASS.
MY OWN ROOM.
MY KIDS.
MY TEACHING.

It’s been A YEAR. But, last week, I FINALLY got to do my first transition day and I just adored it. We had such a brilliant day.

(A little background for those who don’t know my situation. I’ve worked at this school for 8 years now. I started as a TA, wanted more responsibility and was very lucky to be given a HLTA position. Having always wanted to be a teacher and not having a degree, I’ve spent the past 3 years getting a degree and the subsequently completed a SCITT to get QTS so that I can finally become a teacher)

The morning of transition day, I was a BARREL of emotion. I was on the verge of every emotion possible. My brother sent me the loveliest message, which sent me over the edge and made me cry. However, once it got closer to 9am, I was excited and raring to go. My brilliant TA had got the things prepared I’d asked for and we were ready to get them when the bell went.

Despite the fact I’ve worked at this school for 8 years, my class somehow seem to be a class I’ve not covere/taught much, so I knew that transition day needed to be all about having a bit of fun and getting to know each other.

The kids are avid readers which thrills me as I too am a MASSIVE reader! Taking this into account, I decided to spend a good chunk of time doing a Book World Cup (very timely since it’s the World Cup at the minute), inspired by my brilliant tweacher friend Ashley (check him out @MrBoothY6 on twitter).

I gave the children 12 different books which could be our first class novel of the year, gave them time to read about each of the books and talk about them with each other. It was important for me to give the kids time to talk about the books with each other, and with me. A lot of them wanted to know my opinions on the books. I remained as impartial as humanly possible as I wanted it to be THEIR decision, not mine. I wouldn’t have been able to make some of the decisions they did, especially in some of the later rounds. Once they’d had time to process each of the choices, we started the knock out competition. I just used a random number generator to pit them against each other.

It was a hard fought battle with the final round coming down to Rooftoppers vs Skellig vs The Girl of Ink and Stars. We had brilliant discussions around all 3 books and then it came to the final vote.

I was overjoyed when they unanimously decided a winner: The Girl of Ink and Stars. I can’t wait to read it to them, it’s a brilliant story and I adore Kiran’s writing. 

We got up to all kinds of other things on transition day, but for me the Book World Cup was the absolute highlight. If you’re looking for something to do with your new kids, or looking for a way to promote reading, then I would whole-heartedly encourage this kind of activity. My kids are still talking about these books and we’re a week on – they can’t wait to read the rest of the choices in September! A few of them have even gone out and bought them already. 

S x

Brilliant MG still to come!

2018 has graced us some EXCEPTIONAL MG so faryet with half a year left there is still some EXCELLENT MG left to come.

Today, in the spirit of sharing exciting things and looking forward, I thought I would share with you 10 books that I’m excited for in the rest of this year

There are SO MANY books I’m excited for, both in YA and MG, that I could actually be here forever and a day and not have told you them all… however, for now I’ve chosen 10 that I’m THE MOST excited for.

Next week I’ll share YA books I’m excited for too!

So here goes…

2018 mg second half

The Elsewhere Emporium – Ross Mackenzie
(follow up from The Nowhere Emporium, one of my favourite books I’ve read this year!)
“The Nowhere Emporium has been stolen. The shop from nowhere has vanished without a trace. Will it ever reappear? As they search for the lost Emporium, Daniel and Ellie encounter magical bookshops, deserted islands in the dead of night, and an array of magicians (both dead and alive). Meanwhile a dangerous force is attacking the Emporium from the inside, waiting for a chance to break free.”

Tilly and the Bookwanderers. – Anna James
(I’ve been excited for this forever and a day, Anna is a LOVE)
“Eleven year-old Tilly has lived above her grandparents’ bookshop ever since her mother disappeared shortly after she was born. Like the rest of her family, Tilly loves nothing more than to escape into the pages of her favourite stories. One day Tilly realises that classic children’s characters are appearing in the shop through the magic of `book wandering’ – crossing over from the page into real life. With the help of Anne of Green Gables and Alice in Wonderland. Tilly is determined to solve the mystery of what happened to her mother all those years ago, so she bravely steps into the unknown, unsure of what adventure lies ahead and what dangers she may face”

The Way Past Winter – Kiran Milwood Hargrave
(I am the BIGGEST Kiran fan ever, she’s just incredible, this is one on my MUST HAVE NOW books)
“Mila and her sisters live with their brother Oskar in a small forest cabin in the snow. One night, a fur-clad stranger arrives seeking shelter for himself and his men. But by the next morning, they’ve gone – taking Oskar with them. Fearful for his safety, Mila and her sisters set out to bring Oskar back – even it means going north, crossing frozen wild-lands to find a way past an eternal winter.”

The Lost Magician – Piers Torday
(As I write this blog post, there is a proof copy of this on its way to me… SO THAT’S EXCITING!)
“1945. They have survived the Blitz, but when Simon, Patricia, Evelyn and Larry step through a mysterious library door, it is the beginning of their most dangerous adventure yet. They discover the magical world of Folio, where an enchanted kingdom of fairy knights, bears and tree gods is under threat from a sinister robot army. The many stories of the Library are locked in eternal war, and the children’s only hope is to find their creator – a magician who has been lost for centuries. What they discover will change not just their own lives, but the fate of the world, for ever …”

Armistice Runner – Tom Palmer
(I love a war book and Tom writes the most brilliant books)
“Tom Palmer will mark the centenary of the end of First World War with a powerful, fictionalised account of the fell-runners who were used as messengers to and from the front lines in the last days of the war. Deftly told in an intertwining narrative of past and present, Armistice Runner follows a young fell-runner called Lily as she discovers the diaries of her great-great-grandfather and his experiences as a runner-messenger in the
lead-up to the Armistice of 1918.” (Taken from Barrington Stoke press release)

Snowglobe – Amy Wilson
(I’ve actually read this book already and it is INCREDIBLE… watch out for my review coming in the next few weeks!)
“When daydreamer Clementine discovers a mysterious house standing in the middle of town that was never there before, she is pulled towards it by the powerful sense of a mother she never knew. The place is full of snowglobes, swirling with stars and snow and each containing a trapped magician, watched over by Gan, the bitter keeper of the house. One of these is Dylan, a boy who teases her in the real world but who is now desperate for her help.”

Wundersmith – Jessica Townsend
(again, this is a follow up from Nevermoor which is just remarkable… this is one of those releases I’ve been waiting for since I finished the last word of the first book!)
“Morrigan Crow has been invited to join the prestigious Wundrous Society, a place that promised her friendship, protection and belonging for life. She’s hoping for an education full of wunder, imagination and discovery – but all the Society want to teach her is how evil Wundersmiths are. And someone is blackmailing Morrigan’s unit, turning her last few loyal friends against her. Has Morrigan escaped from being the cursed child of Wintersea only to become the most hated figure in Nevermoor? Worst of all, people have started to go missing. The fantastical city of Nevermoor, once a place of magic and safety, is now riddled with fear and suspicion…”

Explorers on Witch Mountain – Alex Bell
(another follow up from The Polar Bear Explorer’s Club, another one I’ve been waiting for FOREVER)
“Stella Starflake Pearl is eagerly anticipating her next expedition. Suddenly disaster strikes when Stella’s father, Felix, is snatched by a fearsome witch. Stella must bring her magic ice princess tiara to Witch Mountain or she will never see Felix again! But no one ever returns from Witch Mountain… Stella, Ethan, Shay, Beanie and reluctant Jungle Cat explorer, Percival, set off into the unknown. They will face terrifying bat caves, poisonous apple groves, outraged vultures, argumentative mushrooms and deranged broomsticks in their quest to rescue Felix.”

Into the Jungle – Katherine Rundell
(everything Katherine Rundell writes blows me away…)
“This wise and witty companion to Rudyard Kipling’s 1894 classic is likewise a series of connected stories about the man-cub Mowgli and his adventures among the animals in the Indian jungle. It includes all the original favorites like Baloo and Bagheera and gives female characters, like Mother Wolf, a more prominent role in Mowgli’s upbringing. The timely theme of the possibility of understanding and empathy across species, cultures, and genders will resonate with contemporary readers.”

Death in the Spotlight – Robin Stevens
(I absolutely adore Robin Stevens’ books, and this is one we’ve been waiting for a while!)
“Someone will take their final bow . . . Fresh from their adventure in Hong Kong, Hazel Wong and Daisy Wells are off to the Rue Theatre in London to face an entirely new challenge: acting. But danger has a nasty habit of catching up with the Detective Society, and it soon becomes clear that there is trouble afoot at the Rue. Jealousy, threats and horrible pranks quickly spiral out of control – and then a body is found. Now Hazel and Daisy must take centre stage and solve the crime . . . before the murderer strikes again.”

And there you have it. 10 of the books I AM MOST EXCITED FOR OK.

2018 continues to be a TREAT FOR THE BRAIN. 

Which 2018 books are you still most excited for?
Have you read any of the books on my list?
Are there any books you think should’ve made my list but didn’t?

Share your thoughts with me! I’d love to know which MG books you’re still most excited for!

S x