January 20

Special Feature

Special Features
ReadingZone's Children's Author of the Month, Ross Welford, talks about his anticipated new book, The Kid Who Came From Space. Our YA Authors of the Month, Elizabeth and Katharine Corr, tell us more about their compelling new teenage fantasy A Throne of Swans. Nizrana Farook's atmospheric debut The Girl Who Stole an Elephant is packed with adventure, while Sarah Hagger-Holt's Nothing Ever Happens Here is a warm and perceptive story about a family facing big changes.

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Great books and authors to start off 2020

Latest books reviewed

Browse the latest books reviewed by our Teachers and Librarians this month, including reviews of the latest picture books, books for children aged 5-7, books for children aged 8-11, and books for teenagers and YA readers.


500 Words 2020

The BBC's 500 Words 2020 writing competition for children aged 5-13 years opens for entries on 16th January and will run through to 27th February.

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WICKED Young Writers Awards

Young writers aged 5-25 years have until 2nd March to submit stories of up to 750 words for the Wicked Young Writers Awards, and to enter the non-fiction award For Good.

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2020 Henrietta Branford Writing Competition

The Henrietta Branford Writing Competition, which runs alongside the Branford Boase Award, is now open to anyone aged under 19. Closing date is Friday 24th April.

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Harry Potter Book Night 2020

Get ready for Harry Potter Book Night on 6th February 2020 with this fabulous - and free! - downloadable kit from Bloomsbury Children's Books!

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Library case studies

Campaign group Great School Libraries is looking for case studies to share showing the impact school libraries can have on whole school learning and the enjoyment of reading.

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MG Leonard book group giveaway

We have sets of MG Leondard and Sam Sedgeman's new book, The Highland Falcon Thief (Macmillan Children's Books), to give away in exchange for reviews for ReadingZone.

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Follow us on Twitter

...for more news about our upcoming changes, as well as book news and giveaways! You can find us @ReadingZone


Unveiling our ReadingZone Festival line-up

Next month ReadingZone will be visiting schools across Surrey for this year's ReadingZone Festival, with a fantastic line-up of authors including Vashti Hardy, PG Bell, Ross MacKenzie, Tom Huddleston and Sue Cheung!

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Special Feature
Special Feature Image


Special Features

ReadingZone's Children's Author of the Month, Ross Welford, talks about his anticipated new book, The Kid Who Came From Space. Our YA Authors of the Month, Elizabeth and Katharine Corr, tell us more about their compelling new teenage fantasy A Throne of Swans. Nizrana Farook's atmospheric debut The Girl Who Stole an Elephant is packed with adventure, while Sarah Hagger-Holt's Nothing Ever Happens Here is a warm and perceptive story about a family facing big changes.

The Kid Who Came From Space
Ross Welford

Our teenagers and , Ross Welford's latest story, about friendship, courage and what makes us human, is an enthralling and big-hearted read. The story follows 12-year-old Ethan and his efforts to find his twin sister, Tammy, who disappears when out delivering Christmas gifts. Look out for a large, hairy alien called Hellyann, a pet chicken and a human zoo. ROSS WELFORD tells us more about THE KID WHO CAME FROM SPACE.

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A Throne of Swans
Katharine Corr

In this sweeping fantasy, intrigue, courtly romance and shapeshifters take centre stage as Aderyn, the young heir to the dominion of Atratys, seeks revenge for the death of her mother. Inspired by Swan Lake and with echoes of Game of Thrones, this is a story of revenge, deception and romance. KATHARINE and ELIZABETH CORR, our YA Authors of the Month, tell us more about A THRONE OF SWANS, the first in their new fantasy series.

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The Girl Who Stole an Elephant
Nizrana Farook

This fast-paced adventure story draws readers into historical Sri Lanka, where three children are on the run following the theft of the Queen's prize jewels. The book includes themes of adversity and hardship, friendship and righting wrongs, and has an atmospheric rainforest setting. NIZRANA FAROOK tells us more about THE GIRL WHO STOLE AN ELEPHANT.

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Nothing Ever Happens Here
Sarah Hagger-Holt

Izzy thinks that nothing ever happens in Littlehaven, the ordinary town where she has grown up with her ordinary family, until the day she discovers that her father will be transitioning into a woman. Now, their lives will change, but what will that mean for Izzy and her family? This a hopeful and honest story about change and how we deal with it. Author SARAH HAGGER-HOLT tells us more about NOTHING EVER HAPPENS HERE:

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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.


The Proudest Blue
Ibtihaj Muhammad
About a girl's first day wearing the hijab, this is an uplifting, joyous story, which celebrates growing up, sibling bonds, and the importance of being strong and proud of who you are.

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The Woodland Trust: Into The Forest
Christiane Dorion
A beautifully-illustrated book about forest animals and their habitats, this will entice young readers with its range of facts and it provides lots of cross-curricular opportunities.

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Orion Lost
Alastair Chisholm
An incredibly enjoyable, fast-paced classic science fiction adventure for readers aged 10+, in which a group of young teenagers find themselves far from home and in charge of a spaceship...Author ALASTAIR CHISHOLM tells us more!

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We would like to thank publishers Nosy Crow Books, HarperCollins Children's Books, Usborne Books and Hot Key Books for supporting this month's ReadingZone newsletter.

©Readingzone 2020.