September 17

Special Feature

This month's author interviews!
Cressida Cowell, our Children's Author of the Month, talks about her magical new fantasy The Wizards of Once while Sif Sigmarsdottir, our YA Author of the Month, tells us about her gripping YA novel, I Am Traitor. We step back in time to WW2 with Lucy Adlington and her powerful YA novel The Red Ribbon, and to the Edwardian world in Things a Bright Girl Can Do by Sally Nicholls, exploring the women's suffrage movement. Bestselling author E Lockhart talks about the inspiration for Genuine Fraud and we chat with Peternelle van Arsdale about her YA debut, The Beast is an Animal. For younger children, we explore picture book The Grotlyn with Benji Davies.

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The latest books, extracts and giveaways!

This month's best children's books

Teachers and librarians have been busy reviewing a range of this season's best books for children and teenagers. Here are their recommended picture books; books for 5+; books for 7+; and books for teenaged readers.


Celebrating poetry on 27 September

Poet Roger Stevens will join us for a live online poetry event at 2.30pm on Wednesday 27 September, to mark National Poetry Day on Thursday 28 September. Roger is an ambassador for National Poetry Day. Find out how to watch it with your class.

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Can your school help to judge the Blue Peter Book Award?

The Blue Peter Book Awards 2018 is looking for school children to help choose the winning books in two categories: the Best Story and the Best Book with Facts for its 2018 awards.

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Newcomer Francesca Sanna recognised

Francesca Sanna has won the 2017 Klaus Flugge Prize for the most exciting and promising newcomer to children's picture book illustration, for her book The Journey (Flying Eye Books).

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UKLA Book Awards longlists announced

The UKLA's longlist for its 2018 book awards highlights new books that are rich in meaning, imagination and vocabulary - and that are ideal to use in class. The longlist, available here, includes books for children aged three to 16 years.

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2018 Scottish Teenage Book Prize

The voting has opened to find Scotland's favourite teenage book of the year, with Elizabeth Laird, Caighlan Smith and Danny Weston shortlisted for the prize.

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Little People, Big Dreams

This series from Frances Lincoln can be used in class to explore famous people, history, science and art - as well as encouraging children aged 5-8 years to fulfil their potential. Here, teachers and school librarians share how they have used the books in class.

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Emily Gravett highlights

Discover some great teaching resources featuring Emily Gravett's picture books - including support for developing characters, videos of art activities and more!!

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Rob Biddulph picture book sets to give away!

We're giving away five sets of Rob Biddulph's picture books - including his award-winning Blown Away and his latest picture book, Kevin (HarperCollins Children's Books).

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Step into the past with Philip Ardagh series

We're giving away three sets of the first two books in Philip Ardagh's The Secret Diary series, published by Nosy Crow in association with the National Trust. We also spoke to Philip Ardagh to find out more about his new series.

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Minecraft Guides to give away!

We have five sets of the latest Minecraft Guides (published by Egmont) to give away. The books have insider information and tips from experts at Mojang games studio - the original creators of Minecraft.

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Genuine Fraud book group set

The latest book by bestselling author E Lockhart, Genuine Fraud, is published this month by Hot Key Books and we have a set of ten copies of the book to give to a school book group, in return for some readers' reviews.

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Special Feature


This month's author interviews!

Cressida Cowell, our Children's Author of the Month, talks about her magical new fantasy The Wizards of Once while Sif Sigmarsdottir, our YA Author of the Month, tells us about her gripping YA novel, I Am Traitor. We step back in time to WW2 with Lucy Adlington and her powerful YA novel The Red Ribbon, and to the Edwardian world in Things a Bright Girl Can Do by Sally Nicholls, exploring the women's suffrage movement. Bestselling author E Lockhart talks about the inspiration for Genuine Fraud and we chat with Peternelle van Arsdale about her YA debut, The Beast is an Animal. For younger children, we explore picture book The Grotlyn with Benji Davies.

The Wizards of Once
Cressida Cowell

In these dark, Iron Age forests, something is stirring.... Could the witches, once thought to be extinct, be back? Wish, a Warrior, and Xar, a Wizard, must put aside their enmity to have any chance of surviving if the witches really are returning.... We asked bestselling author Cressida Cowell to tell us more about her new series, The Wizards of Once.

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I Am Traitor
Sif Sigmarsdottir

When spaceships fill the skies of Earth, thousands of teenagers begin to vanish. No one knows why the aliens are taking them, nor where the children are being taken. When Amy's brother also disappears, she is given a chance to save him - but only if she lets herself be taken... Author Sif Sigmarsdottir talks to us about her gripping YA novel, I Am Traitor.

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The Red Ribbon
Lucy Adlington

When 14-year-old Ella volunteers to work in the sewing workshop at at the concentration camp where she's imprisoned, she knows that this could make the difference for her between life and death. Inspired by the true stories of women who worked in the Auschwitz sewing workshop, Lucy Adlington's The Red Ribbon is a powerful story about friendship, hope and survival. Lucy Adlington tells us more.

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Things a Bright Girl Can Do
Sally Nicholls

Sally Nicholls's Things a Bright Girl Can Do is set at the turn of the twentieth century, a time when women had no vote and limited freedom or opportunities. The story follows three girls as they grow into young women, exploring their everyday lives alongside their ongoing fight for emancipation. Sally Nicholls tells us how the novel developed.

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Genuine Fraud
E. Lockhart

Genuine Fraud, the new psychological thriller from bestselling author E.Lockhart ('We Were Liars'), takes us from the end of a story through to the beginning, with a runaway heiress, an intense friendship and a murder (or two) along the way.... Aimed at readers aged 14+, Genuine Fraud explores identity, friendship and how far we will go to get what we want. We asked author E Lockhart to tell us more.

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The Beast is an Animal
Peternelle van Arsdale

This is an eerie, powerful story, centred on a small community that is preyed upon by soul eaters -fearsome twins who range the countryside looking for lives to takes. Alyce is one of the few people who doesn't fear them, but is that because she is the same as them? Author Peternelle van Arsdale tells us more about her debut YA novel.

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The Grotlyn
Benji Davies

When you're alone at night and hear strange noises, you know the Grotlyn is about...but what is the Grotlyn and just how frightening is it? Benji Davies's new picture book explores children's night time fears - and teaches us to love the dark! Here, he talks about how The Grotlyn developed.

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Watch out for...
Bookclub Highlights

We have free copies to give away for reviews. Please email your school details to info@readingzone.com for the chance to win a copy.


Kevin
Rob Biddulph
When Sid Gibbons discovers that his imaginary friend Kevin is real, it leads to all sorts of mischief but, when things go too far, Sid has to find a way to make amends. Here, author Rob Biddulph tells us about his latest picture book:

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National Trust: The Secret Diary of Jane Pinny, Victorian House Maid
Philip Ardagh
In this new series author Philip Ardagh steps back into the past to solve mysteries for today's young reader and to give them a glimpse of how people once lived, including a Victorian housemaid and a medieval page. Here, Philip Ardagh tells us how the series for ages 8+ developed.

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A Skinful of Shadows
Frances Hardinge
12-year-old Makepeace discovers that she has a special gift - or a curse - that enables her to 'house' ghosts inside her own body. The Fellmottes, a powerful family, want to use her abilities but their greed for power at any price would condemn Makepeace to a life in the shadows... Award-winning author Frances Hardinge tells us more about her latest novel.

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We would like to thank publishers Hachette Children's Books, Simon & Schuster Children's Books, Hot Key Books, Andersen Press, HarperCollins Children's Books, Nosy Crow and Macmillan Children's Books for supporting this month's ReadingZone newsletter.

©Readingzone 2018.