We’ve spoken to our team of library experts and come up with nine of our favourite books for children to read this summer holiday, and a great selection to choose from for the Summer Reading Challenge. From dragons stalking library shelves to magical mysteries at a lighthouse – this summer, the real adventures begin between the pages of books!
Where the River Runs Gold, Sita Brahmachari (9-11 years)
In a world where the bees have disappeared, children are the ones who pollinate crops so the nation doesn’t go hungry. Follow Shifa and her brother Themba, as they try to escape from the cruelty of the farm they’re forced to work on. Read on as they hope to build a better life for themselves and inspire a better future for everyone.
The Dragon in the Library, Louie Stowell & Davide Ortu (5-8 years)
Kit’s a kid who prefers getting her feet muddy to picking up a book, but when her keen-reading friends drag her to the library, she discovers a whole world she never knew existed. Join Kit and her friends as they battle to save the library… and the world.
Pages & Co Tilly and the Bookwanderers, Anna James (8-11 years)
When eleven year old Tilly’s mum disappeared, she started living above her grandparents’ bookshop. Life above a bookshop is great for a bookworm like Tilly, who loves nothing more than diving into the pages of her favourite stories. Until one day she discovers the characters from the pages walking among the shelves and enlists the likes of Alice in Wonderland and Anne of Green Gables to help solve the mystery of her missing mum.
The Bad Luck Lighthouse, Nicki Thornton (9-12 years)
Following on from the mystery of the Last Chance Hotel, we join Seth Seppi in a daring adventure as he discovers a bewildering new world of magic. With many questions left unanswered and his nemesis still at large, it’s not long before Seth and his cat Nightshade are embroiled in a new MagiCon case – a murder investigation at an abandoned lighthouse.
Head Kid, David Baddiel (8-12 years)
In this laugh-out-loud story of chaos, practical jokes and wish fulfilment, David Baddiel answers the question of what would happen if the strictest headteacher swapped bodies with the naughtiest kid in school.
Kid Normal and the Shadow Machine, Greg James & Chris Smith (7-10 years)
Murph Cooper doesn’t have any powers, but that doesn’t stop him from being on the best team of the Heroes’ Alliance. But supervillain Magpie believes that a powerless hero is no hero at all, and builds a gadget to prove it. When Kid Normal enters the Shadow Machine, the world won’t ever be the same.
The Boy at the Back of the Class, Onjali Q Rauf (8-11 years)
Winner of the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize, The Boy At the Back of the Class follows the story of Ahmet, a strange newcomer to the Year 4 classroom. He sits at the back, doesn’t talk much and, strangest of all, isn’t keen on sweets! But between them, four 9-year-olds have a plan to make Ahmet their friend.
Brightstorm: A Sky-Ship Adventure, Vashti Hardy (9-11 years)
When twins Arthur and Maddie hear news that their father has died in a failed expedition to South Polaris, they embark upon a dangerous quest to find answers. Join the twins as they follow in their father’s footsteps and begin a new exploration voyage to discover the truth.
The World’s Worst Teachers, David Walliams (7-12 years)
If you think your teachers are bad, you should see these guys! These ten tales of terrible teachers will make you realise that the monster at the front of your classroom isn’t so bad after all.