Taking my class on a trip to the magnificent Hive Library in Worcester I was struck by once the children had found the Harry Potter and David Walliams books then, surrounded by hundreds of wonderful stories, they were lost, not knowing what to read next. For the past 12 months I have been reading books, sharing them with my class, and building a website www.knollbestbooks.weebly.com Now my Year 5 and 6 classes are often found discussing authors, plots and getting excited about forthcoming book releases.
By former Deputy Head at Heathfield Knoll School, Kidderminster
Here are 3 of my favourite books that will keep your child busy over the school holidays.
The History Keepers- The Storm Begins by Damian Dibben
This is the first book in a series of three. Follow the adventures of Jake Djones as he is kidnapped, transported through time and finds out that his parents are far from what he thinks they are. The History keepers are a secret society which travels through the centuries to prevent evil enemies from meddling with History itself and Jake is now part of their group. Really strong characters who you can really imagine on a cinema screen. This book will excite, make you laugh and transport you to different age sin time. The book claims to be " a new Harry Potter" series and I could see what they mean. There are also bits that remind me of an Indiana Jones film or Percy Jackson. The series has already been snapped up by Hollywood, so hopefully films of the books will come soon. I am very excited about this series... imagine how good it will be when these books become as famous as Harry Potter... and you already know about them!!
What next?- Try the H.I.V.E. series by Mark Walden
The Mystery of the Whistling Caves by Helen Moss
A group of children spending the Summer Holidays with a busy, dotty relative- CHECK.
An island with a castle- CHECK.
A tomboy-ish girl, afraid of nothing- CHECK.
A faithful dog- CHECK.
One of the children forever thinking of food- CHECK.
Rowing Boats, caves, robberies, treasure, mysteries- CHECK, CHECK, CHECK, CHECK.
Sound familiar? Of course it does. This book is the first in a series that unashamedly sets out to be like Enid Blyton's Famous Five. Just how "smashing" is that! This is a modern day version. The children use the internet, send text messages to help solve the mystery. Sit down in the garden to read it this summer¦.. with lashings of ginger beer! The ease of reading, simple, fast paced plots that I so loved as a child are all here.
What next?- The Laura Marlin series by Lauren St. John
A Boy Called M.O.U.S.E. by Penny Dolan
A Boy Called M.O.U.S.E. by Penny Dolan is probably my favourite stand alone novel for children. Set in that wonderful story telling period of the late 19th (Dickens, Peter Pan etc...) the novel follows the adventures of a young boy as he attempts to find his mother.
Whisked from the privileged surroundings of Epton Towers, sent to a cruel Boarding school by his greedy Uncle Scrope, Mouse grows up without knowing his real background. A fast paced rollercoaster of adventures through a circus, a lonely journey to London, even onto the west end stage as part of a Midsummer Night's Dream, this is a magical, magical children's tale and deserves far greater recognition than it seems to have received.
What next?- The Roof Topper by Katherine Rundell