...and here are some other suggestions we've made earlier

The redecorated children section at Barnetts of Wadhurst near Tunbridge Wells Sussex
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The Travel Book by Lonely Planet

We think: on your marks, get set, go!

Let your (child's) imagination take you round the world with Lonely Planet's authoritative and imaginative travel guide to every country in the world.

As travel restrictions ease, decide where to take your next holiday!


The Last Bear 

by Hannah Gold

We think: beautifully told and illustrated - and now in paperback!

There are no polar bears left on Bear Island. At least, that's what April's father tells her when his scientific research takes them to this remote Arctic outpost for six months.
But one endless summer night, April meets one. He is starving, lonely and a long way from home. Determined to save him, April begins the most important journey of her life...

The Last Bear is perfect for readers of 8+ and beautifully illustrated throughout by Levi Pinfold - winner of the Kate Greenaway Medal.


Race to the Death by Annelise Gray

We think: a thrilling roller-coaster (or chariot-ride) of a story!

Ben Hur meets National Velvet in a debut adventure story aimed at the 9-12 age group.

Dido dreams of becoming the first female charioteer at the great Circus Maximus with Porcellus, a wild, tempestuous horse she longs to train and race but girls must content themselves with helping around the stables, until... the untimely death of her father, Porcellus' trainer, catapults Dido into the heart of the Circus Maximus


Secrets and Spies

We think: could you be a spy? (Don't tell us...!)

Prepare to go undercover and enter a world of secret missions, covert operations and classified information. Explore the history of espionage from ancient secret agents to modern-day surveillance, and read about the lives of infamous spies and their missions. Learn the language of spies and how to read codes and ciphers, then ask yourself the all-important question - could you be a spy? 


Arthur The Always King
by Kevin Crossley-Holland

We think: fantastic gift edition

From King Arthur's childhood to his final battle, the timeless tales of the sword in the stone, the quests of the Knights of the Round Table and the wizardry of Merlin are woven together in a breathtaking feat of storytelling. Sumptuous illustrations by award-winning Chris Riddell make this an edition to treasure.

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Wild Child
by Dara McAnulty

We think: a fascinating world awaits

Let award-winning young naturalist, Dara McAnulty, take you on a wild journey.

Going for walks with family and friends, noticing and recording what you see is a brilliant and simple way to become fascinated and knowledgeable about our incredible wildlife. Filled with poems, facts and activities, this gorgeously illustrated book will help you explore the natural world and reveal the magic of nature.


Maria's Island
by Victoria Hislop

We think: evocative storytelling perfect for confident readers

Maria Petrakis, one of the children in the original version of Victoria Hislop's bestselling The Island, tells the absorbing story of the Cretan village of Plaka and the tiny, deserted island of Spinalonga - Greece's former leper colony.

Full-colour illustrations will transport the reader to the timeless and beautiful Greek landscape and Mediterranean seascape.

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The Wizards of Once: Never and Forever
by Cressida Cowell

We think: A "must read" for fans of the Wizards of Once

Xar and Wish must unite to try to lift the curse of the Wildwoods with the ingredients fort the Spell-to-get-rid-of-Witches, but will the Tazelwerm monster stop them. Will they find the Kingwitch? Or will Witches reign forever???

...or, if you don't know Xar and Wish, but loved Cressida Cowell's How to Train Your Dragon, you can always ask us for Book 1 in the series!

Money-go-round McGough children's book a

by Roger McGough and Mini Grey

We think: as good as you'd expect from Roger McGough

So... Mr Toad can​ use his shiny new coin to pay Miss Mole, and she can now pay Sam Stoat, who can use the coin to repay Mr Badger and...

... you could see it as a fun way to educate children on the economy. Or you could just enjoy the witty and mischievous twists from a master of children's writing coupled with the beautiful artwork from a prize-winning illustrator.


Voyage of the Sparrowhawk 

by Natasha Farrant

We think: lose yourself in a great adventure

In the aftermath of World War One, everyone is trying to rebuild their lives. If Ben is to avoid being sent back to the orphanage, he needs to find his brother Sam, wounded in action and is now missing. Lotti’s horrible aunt and uncle want to send her away to boarding-school (when she has just so successfully managed to get expelled from her last one!). And Clara, their young teacher, is waiting for news of her missing fiancé. Just as they think they’ve found their feet in the new order, disaster strikes...


Time for Tea: A First Book of Cookery by Shirley Hughes

We think: why not get the children cooking over the holidays?

A beautifully illustrated collection of first recipes and family stories by Kate-Greenaway winning author, Shirley Hughes. This classic collection of easy-to-follow recipes, inspired by everyday family adventures, is the perfect introduction to cookery for first readers. From making pancakes with Dad, baking apples after the Saturday shopping or even icing a birthday cake for Mum, this sumptuously illustrated recipe book gives a gentle insight into the joy of cooking together.


Cane Warriors 
by Alex Wheatle

We think: gripping and important read

'Nobody free till everybody free.'

Moa is fourteen. The only life he has ever known is working on the Frontier sugar cane plantation for endless hot days, fearing the vicious whips of the overseers. Then one night he learns of an uprising, led by the charismatic Tacky. Moa is to be a cane warrior, and fight for the freedom of all the enslaved people in the nearby plantations. But before they can escape, Moa and his friend Keverton must face their first great task: to kill their overseer, Misser Donaldson. Time is ticking, and the day of the uprising approaches...


Where Snow Angels Go

by Maggie O'Farrell

We think: beautifully illustrated tale of hope - perfect for now

The first children’s book from the Women’s Prize winning author of 'Hamnet', 'Where Snow Angels Go' tells the story of Sylvie, a little girl who wakes up to find a Snow Angel in her bedroom, there to protect her. Months later, she longs to find her Snow Angel again to thank him and tell him everything that has happened. Will he ever come back? And how can she make sure everyone has a Snow Angel to look over them?


Kay's Anatomy: A Complete (and Completely Disgusting) Guide to the Human Body by Adam Kay

We think: everything you've ever wanted to know about the human body (and some things you'd probably rather not know!)

Former doctor and best-selling author of 'This is Going to Hurt', Adam Kay, turns his attention to anatomy for younger readers with hilarious results.

Take a tour of your insides in his company and along the way find the answers to all-important questions such as whether bogeys are safe to eat (apparently they are) and how much of your life you will spend on the loo. Biology has never been so entertaining.


Pirate Stew
by Neil Gaiman, illustrated by Chris Riddell

We think: pirate babysitters - what can possibly go wrong..?

Pirate Stew! Pirate Stew! Pirate Stew for me and you!

Pirate Stew, Pirate Stew, eat it and you won't be blue. You can be a pirate too!


Silly and gloriously entertaining, this tale of pirates, flying ships and some rather magical stew is perfect for all pirates, both young and old. With a fabulous rhyming text from master storyteller Neil Gaiman, and spellbinding illustrations by the supremely talented Chris Riddell, three-times-winner of the Kate Greenaway Medal, this is the picture book of the year! Quirky, action-packed and perfect for Christmas!


Britannica All New Children's Encyclopedia

We think: back in print at last and long overdue!

For the first time in 36 years, the Children's Britannica is back in print, but reimagined for the 21st century.

'We've done away with the A-Z model because these days people look up individual facts on the internet' says editor Christopher Lloyd. 'Instead we provide a slalom journey through the history of the world in eight chapters...we've backed up pretty much every page with contributions from more than 100 experts'. Taking the reader from the Big Bang to the future of thought-controlled body parts, bursting with illustrations and snappy facts, this encyclopedia will enthrall, engage and encourage independent thought. 


Death Sets Sail  
by Robin Stevens

We think: we'll miss them!

The ninth and final novel in the bestselling, award-winning Murder Most Unladylike series. Daisy Wells and Hazel Wong are in Egypt, taking a cruise along the Nile. They are hoping to see some ancient temples and a mummy or two: what they get, instead, is murder.

Also travelling on the SS Hatshepsut is a mysterious society called the Breath of Life: a group of genteel English ladies and gentlemen, who believe themselves to be reincarnations of the ancient pharaohs. Three days into the cruise their leader is found dead in her cabin, stabbed during the night. It soon becomes clear to Daisy and Hazel that the victim's timid daughter is being framed - and they begin to investigate their most difficult case yet.


The Great Godden 
by Meg Rosoff

We think: pitch-perfect story telling

This is the story of one family, one dreamy summer – the summer when everything changes. In a holiday house by the sea, in a big, messy family, one teenager watches as brothers and sisters, parents and older cousins fill hot days with wine and games and planning a wedding.

Enter the Goddens – irresistible, charming, languidly sexy Kit and surly, silent Hugo. Suddenly there's a serpent in this paradise – and the consequences will be devastating.

Suitable for young (and not so young) adults!


Viper's Daughter 
by Michelle Paver

We think: immersive storytelling

Return to a richly imagined stone age world and reacquaint yourself with much loved characters. Viper's Daughter is the seventh book in the award-winning series that began with Wolf Brother: like them it can be read as a standalone story.

For two summers Torak and Renn have been living in the Forest with their faithful pack-brother, Wolf. But their happiness is shattered when Renn realizes Torak is in danger - and she's the threat. When she mysteriously disappears, Torak and Wolf brave the Far North to find her. At the mercy of the Sea Mother and haunted by ravenous ice bears, their quest leads them to the Edge of the World.


Alex Rider, Nightshade 
by Anthony Horowitz

We think: welcome escapism!

Get ready for action, adrenaline and adventure in this explosive, brand new Alex Rider mission by bestselling author, Anthony Horowitz. In this adrenaline-fuelled adventure in the number one bestselling series, Alex Rider is sent by MI6 Special Operations to infiltrate a new and sinister organization known only as Nightshade. Alex is on his own, with the fate of thousands of people resting in his hands.

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Rise Up: Ordinary Kids with Extraordinary Stories by Amanda Li and Amy Blackwell

We think: guaranteed to boost your mood!

Featuring over 29 tales of amazing young people who have achieved the unimaginable – from surviving a plane crash in the jungle to striking against climate change, these empowering stories show that no matter who you are, how old you are, and what you do, you can rise to the challenge. 

Each incredible story is narrated in an exciting and engaging style, combined with visually stunning illustrations by Amy Blackwell. Children can lose themselves in these remarkable true-life tales of ingenuity, courage and commitment.


Asha and the Spirit Bird
by Jasbinder Bilan

We think: great read for 9+

Asha lives on the family farm with her mother in rural India. Her father is away working in the city, and when the money he sends stops suddenly, a wicked debt collector arrives. She’s determined to seize the property – and the treasure rumoured to be hidden on the land. Guided by a majestic bird which Asha believes to be the spirit of her grandmother, she and her best friend Jeevan embark on a journey to the city, across the Himalayas, to find her father and save her home …


The Good Thieves 
by Katherine Rundell

We think: Rundell on top form yet again

Fresh off the boat from England, Vita Marlowe has a job to do. Her beloved grandfather Jack has been cheated out of his home and possessions by a notorious conman with Mafia connections. Seeing Jack's spirit is broken, Vita is desperate to make him happy again, so she devises a plan to outwit his enemies and recover his home.

She finds a young pickpocket, working the streets of the city. And, nearby, two boys with highly unusual skills and secrets of their own are about to be pulled into her lawless, death-defying plan.

Fast-paced, thrilling and vivid - the story of a group of children who will do anything to right a wrong


The Book of Dust: The Secret Commonwealth 
by Philip Pullman

We think: does storytelling get any better than this?

Follow the next stage of Lyra's adventures...

Lyra Silvertongue is now a young woman in her second year at Oxford University. When her daemon, Pantalaimon, witnesses a murder, they are forced to navigate their relationship in a way they could never have imagined, drawn into the complex and dangerous factions of a world that they had no idea existed.

Also, look out for the upcoming BBC adaptation of Lyra's earlier adventures in Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy, airing on 3rd November.


Little People, Big Dreams

We think: quirky illustrations and a powerful message

Discover a best-selling series for younger readers, exploring the lives of inspiring people from all walks of life, including Anne Frank, Marie Curie, Stephen Hawking, Mahatma Gandhi. All of them began life as a child with a dream...


The Curse of the School Rabbit 
by Judith Kerr

We think: perfect for all the family and for independent readers aged 6+ 

Snowflake is the school rabbit, and Snowflake is TROUBLE.
At least that’s what Tommy thinks, and when Snowflake is unexpectedly left for him to look after and EVERYTHING starts to go wrong, it looks like Tommy might be right.

In what turned out to be her final story, Judith Kerr confirms her status as one of our best loved children's writers with this funny and poignant tale of a rabbit which changes a family's fortunes.


by David Long and Kerry Hyndman

We think: entertaining, inspiring and beautifully illustrated

Dogs, pigeons, bears, ponies...their extraordinary and courageous exploits make compelling reading. 

Highlights include Voytek, the bomb carrying bear and Rob, the collie who parachuted more than 20 times with the SAS!


by Eve Ainsworth

We think: down-to-earth writing for 9-11 year olds

A talented footballer, Alfie loses his mum and his world falls apart. Then he meets Alice who has her own troubles but whose energy and unpredictability are a lifeline for Alfie.

Movingly written and ultimately uplifting, this book brought a tear to the reviewer's eye!

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by Nick Sharratt and Pippa Goodheart

We think: a fantastic way to set imaginations on fire

If you could go anywhere, where would you go? Seaside, forest, volcano or outer space? Who would you go with? 

If you could live anywhere, where would it be? A house, castle or under the sea?

Just a few of the questions posed by this wonderful picture book which provides hours of fun from pre-school through primary.


Mission Telemark
by Amanda Mitchison

We think: one of the best reads for 9-13 year olds - girls and boys alike

Four teenagers attempt the most dangerous sabotage mission of WWII in this gripping thriller based on real events. Featuring fold-out copies of original Special Operations Executive documents, this is a must-read. (Parents will enjoy it too!).


Gruffalo Crumble and other recipes - based on Julia Donaldson's best-selling book

We think: easy to follow, step-by-step instructions 

Try your hand at cooking scrambled snake or making owl ice cream in this Gruffalo themed first cookbook. A must for all Gruffalo fans out there.


The Giggler Treatment
by Roddy Doyle

We think: guaranteed to have you laughing out loud

The Giggler Treatment is what Gigglers (with the help of Rover, a talking dog) do to adults who are mean to children. Spoiler alert - stepping in dog poo is one option!

Roddy Doyle's hilarious story is perfect for 7 years and up.

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A Wee Bird Was Watching
by Karine Polwart

We think: superb illustrations raise the bar for picture books

Beautifully illustrated tale of how the robin acquired its red breast.  A perfect story to cuddle up and read with little ones.


The Book of the Bees
by Piotr Socha

We think: encyclopaedic and great fun

All you ever need to know about bees in this glorious A3 book that appeals to all ages.


Everest - The Remarkable Story of Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay

We think: humbling tale of two extraordinary individuals

 'At 11.30 in the morning on 29th May 1953, a bee keeper and a former yak herder took a final few weary steps ... on to the roof of the world'.

Superb illustrations and energetic storytelling bring to life this legendary tale of bravery, determination and friendship. Hard to comprehend how they tackled Everest in 'old fashioned' gear!

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The Boy at the Back of the Class 
by Onjali Rauf

We think: a sensitive introduction to the refugee crisis

 'There used to be an empty chair at the back of my class, but now a boy called Ahmet is sitting there... He's a refugee who's run away from war.'

Deserving winner of the Blue Peter Book Award 2019, this is a story of friendship and understanding told from a child's perspective.


Charles Darwin's
On the Origin of Species

We think: Evolutionary theory for the younger generation 

 Darwin's theory of evolution is clearly explained and beautifully illustrated in this gem of a book that belongs on every child's shelf. Sure to inspire the next generation of natural scientists!

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by David Walliams

We think: David Walliams at his laugh-out-loud best. 

Meet the Meeks. Librarians Mr and Mrs Meek will do anything to keep their darling daughter, Myrtle Meek, happy. But Myrtle always wants more, more, more! When Myrtle declares she wants a FING, there's only one problem - 



Into the Jungle 
by Katherine Rundell

We think: destined to become a modern classic

Katherine Rundell creates charming and compelling origin stories for all Kipling's best-known characters, from Baloo and Shere Khan to Kaa and Bagheera. Approved by Kipling's estate, these tales will make you laugh and cry!

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The Closest Thing to Flying
by Gill Lewis

We think: an unforgettable story of girl power!

Award-winning novelist Gill Lewis switches between the experiences of Semira, an Eritrean refugee in London and Hen, a Victorian child whose diary inspires Semira. A powerful story exploring the plight of refugees in the UK and the beginnings of the women’s suffrage movement. Age 9+

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Commotion in the Ocean
by Giles Andreae

We think: a timeless classic to enjoy with young children

The crab likes walking sideways 

And I think the reason why,

Is to make himself look sneaky

And pretend that he's a spy!