People

All reviews tagged with 8-10


 

1066 And Before That

Early history gets an airing in this poetry collection – co-written by Brian Moses and Roger Stevens – which is divided up into five sections, beginning at the Stone Age, ending with the eponymous battle of Hastings, and taking in Ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome along the way. In fact, there is precious little that…

8 Ways to Draw an Elephant

This fascinating art activity book from Tara Books offers an introduction to Indian art traditions through the exploration of various depictions of elephants. From a photo to realistic rendering, through to stylized versions with different patterns, the book explores eight different folk and tribal styles through the work of eight artists. This unusual approach blends…

A Book of Letters

Abby receives the letter A in a note from her friend and starts a fun letter-writing chain from A to Z. From Illinois to India to the boy next door, we follow the letter trail all around the world, experiencing changing climates, ways of dress, skin colours, and 26 fun notes. This book of letters…

A Boy Called Christmas

This is a story where impossible is an old elf swear word; a story where reindeer can fly; a story where elves live in a remote corner of Finland and a story of how a boy named Nikolas came to be Father Christmas. Nikolas is a simple boy who lives in Finland with his woodcutter…

A Coyote’s in the House

The coyote, Antwan, is one seriously cool dude. He runs with his gang, the Howling Diablos, in the Hollywood Hills. He is the main man, the soon-to-be leader of the pack, ‘the smartest and fastest of all the young coyotes’. Normally Coyotes avoid humans and their pets (unless a tasty kitten or delicious dog is…

A Day With Dogs

A Day with Dogs is a fantastic book that offers an exclusive insight into every little bit of what nine dogs (and a lot of humans) do during their day; be it visiting the doctor, playing in school, shopping at the supermarket or playing musical instruments. Part non-fiction, part fiction, A Day with Dogs is…

A first Poetry Book

This bumper anthology from Macmillan contains well over 200 poems from 'the very best poets around', and, with its title, big print and cover festooned with chicks and a bunny rabbit, seems at first glance to be aimed at young children. It's divided up into topics such as 'Food', 'Pets', 'Space' and so on, which…

A Giant Never Dies

Natural feelings sprout up in childhood and are freely expressed, and these poems relate them in a child’s voice. Full of zesty innocence, they talk about things that really matter when you’re young. Love abounds – for Dad, the dog, the baby blanket and the stuffed cat. Exploration affirms the world is full of interesting…

A Little Aloud for Children

This volume is an anthology of poems, stories and extracts for children of unspecified age. Everything about the volume is well-intentioned and all royalties are going to the Reader Organisation. There are about seventy pieces in all, arranged under approximately thirty headings designed to attract young readers, from ‘Sailing Away’ in the beginning to ‘Angels’…

A Nest Full of Stars

Admirers of James Berry’s poetry will find that this new collection continues to fulfil the aspirations voiced in the title poem of his first book, When I Dance, published some fourteen years ago: ‘I’m costumed in a rainbow… And I celebrate all rhythms.’ Here, the rainbow world is as bright and sparkling as ever and…

A Very Messy Inspection

Young Piccolo Grande lives a solitary life in his big family home. His parents are missing in the ‘tropics’ and his only friends are a pair of perch in the fishpond. But Piccolo doesn’t mind. He is an orderly boy who enjoys making lists and flossing his teeth and he seems quite capable of looking…

A Walk in Paris

Salvatore Rubbino has been shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal and various other awards. This book is the third in a series, the others dealing with New York and London. A young girl is being shown Paris by her grandfather. They visit all the main sights and we see Paris through her eyes, in all…

A Whisper of Wolves

Alice and Dawn are Whisperers in the world of Meridina. Their charge is to protect the world from the sinister demons the Narlaw. The Narlaw have not been seen in Meridina for so long they have become legend and much of the Whisperer lore has been lost. But now they have returned. Dawn and Alice…

A World of Information

This is a miscellany of the very best kind. Readers will be hooked by facts as varied as differing kinds of knots, different kinds of print, the periodic table of the elements, neap and spring tides, the organs of the body and a whole host of other information. At no point does the trivia seem…

Above and Below

Perfect for nature lovers, this lift-the-flap book gives a summary of many ecosystems on our planet presented alongside luscious illustrations of flora and fauna. From the rainforest to the savannah, we get an A-Z of natural habitats. We are presented a generalised list of the creatures and plants that occupy these areas, as well as…

Aesop’s Fables

Fiona Waters (retold) Fulvio Testa   A fable is a short story with a moral, and what better fables are there than Aesop’s. Aesop’s Fables have been around in one form or another since 320BC, and loved by readers of all ages. Children, in particular, love them. It could be said that the fables are…

Agatha Parrot and the Mushroom Boy

Agatha Parrot is just trying to watch her favourite TV show, ‘SING, WIGGLE and SHINE’ (the worst talent show ever), when her absolutely evil brother James swipes the remote so he can watch football instead. Of course, there’s a row and the remote goes missing and no one can watch anything. But after a giant…

Aidan Abet Teacher’s Pet

Guy Bass, an award-winning author known for his series Stitch Head and Atomic!, is back with another hilarious and peculiar story where a very unpopular teacher’s pet takes on more than he can chew with the arrival of a new teacher. ‘Aidan Abet, teacher’s pet! Peed his pants and now they’re wet!’ These are the…

Ailfí agus an Vaimpír

Leabhar den scoth is ea an leabhar úrnua
seo atá curtha faoin ár mbráid ag Orna Ní Choileáin, scríbhneoir an cnuasaigh gearrscéalta Canary Wharf a foilsíodh i 2009. Bhain mé fíor- shult agus taitneamh as an leabhar corraitheach seo agus mé ag leanúint turais Ailfí agus an vaimpír Marius agus iad ar thóir chónra! Mar
is eol do chách,…

Áille agus Brúid

Léirmheas le Shane Donoghue Finscéal traidisiúnta ón bhFrainc is ea an leabhar seo atá bunaithe den chuid is mó ar Áille agus Brúid. Is leabhar faoi chlúdach crua é ar a bhfuil cuma álainn a tharraingíonn siúl an léitheora, agus ina leagtar amach an scéal ar thaobh amháin agus pictiúir bheoga ar an taobh eile. Sa…

Alienography 2: Tips for Tiny Tyrants

This is the follow-up title to Alienography: Or How to Spot an Alien Invasion. In the first book, a parody of a fictional work of non-fiction, Riddell directed his attention to aliens and robots. This time, he’s targeted the iconic evil-genius-with-a-giant-head for his lampooning. There are plenty of franchises up for ridicule, with Battlestar Galactica, Babylon 5 and Star…

Alpha, Bravo, Charlie: The Complete List of Nautical Codes

Pirates used to raise the skull and crossbones to send a message to unfortunate crews who found themselves within their range of fire: prepare to be attacked. The jolly roger no longer strikes fear into sailors’ hearts today (modern pirates aren’t that obvious), but there is another system of nautical flags that has been in…

Alphabet

There are no words in this book, apart from the author's introduction to the work which states briefly "The heroes in this book are the letters of the alphabet….". A winner of a special prize at the Bologna Children's Book Fair, this book is a showcase for one of the world's best illustrators of modern times.…

Amadans

Jimmy and his friend, Nita Nextdoor, ‘all teeth, curls and ferocity’ are intrigued by badges, bearing the message ‘AmadansAnonymousComingtogetyou’. At the mention of the word ‘Amadan’, Jimmy’s Grandad (a man of few words since his budgie died) becomes agitated and warns Jimmy ‘Beware the Stroke Lads, boy! … They’ll root you to the spot, and…

An Dragan Feasa

Meallfar léitheoirí óga agus cuirfear iad faoi dhraíocht an scéil mhearluais spreagúil seo faoi dhragain, faoi dhraíocht agus faoi eachtraí spéisiúla- saothar céadfhoilsithe ón údar Rhiannon Watson. Ó thús scéil ina dtugtar briseadh teaghlaigh le fios, cuirtear Seosamh, Laoise agus Máirtín in aithne dúinn, triúr siblíní atá an-difriúil óna chéile ach a bhfuil dlúthchaidream eatarthu…

An Illustrated Treasury of Scottish Folk and Fairy Tales

This is a beautifully illustrated and designed book. Quotations from the text “sweep “over the endpapers. The illustrations, by Kate Leiper, are placed on the pages to enhance the text; there are also delightful, apt illustrations around most of the page numbers. The muted tones of the pictures suit exactly the text. The stories are…

An Lámh in Uachtar

Is leabhar fiúntach eile ó Futa Fata atá againn in An Lámh in Uachtar, aistrithe ó Fhraincis go Gaeilge ag Máirín Ní Mhárta, ina bhfaighimid léargas ar chuid de na trioblóidí a bhaineann le saol an déagóra chomhaimseartha.   Is í Vicí príomhphearsa an scéil seo, agus nuair a chastar orainn í, níl sí ar fónamh. Tá buachaill…

An Leaba Sciatánach

Written for those newly independent readers who need accessible yet stimulating material, An Leaba Sciathánach is a simple story of a young boy’s night-time adventure with his much-loved, ‘special’ teddy bear. Teddy’s wish is that his young ‘special person’ should accompany him to his birthday celebrations so they fly on Niall’s bed to the Planet…

An Sealgaire agus an Crann Éabainn

The traditional story in this attractive book was collected from an old Zarama storyteller in Nigeria. Zarama warriors bear a certain resemblance to Irish heroes of old and one is also reminded of some familiar stories. It is interesting to note the similarities in cultures from one country to another. A man was seeking a…

An tEolaí Óg: Spraoi le hUisce

Tá an samhradh buailte linn, tá geataí na scoile dúnta agus tá sé ag stealladh báistí taobh amuigh. Tá súile óga ag faire ort go ceistiúil, iad ag rá “Céard a dhéanfaimid anois?” Ná bíodh imní ort, le cabhair an scríbhneora Lisa Burke tá réimse gníomhaíochtaí spraíúil curtha le chéile i bhfoirm An t-eolaí óg:…

Animals Don’t Have Ghosts

This is a pleasant variant of the ‘town mouse, country mouse’ fable, set in modern Dublin. It is told in the voice of eight-year-old Michelle who is visited by her country cousins Sinéad and her younger brother Dara, whom she describes as ‘culchies’. Michelle’s description of a range of amusing incidents allows her to reveal…

Anyone But Ivy Pocket

Anyone But Ivy Pocket introduces you to the most unlikely and memorable protagonists, a twelve year old maid called Ivy Pocket. As the title suggests she comes across as being a most undesirable individual, but we mustn't judge a book by its cover no matter how tempting it may be. Krisp offers you an insight…

Apocalypse Bow Wow

Stay cool dude, the world as we know it is over and everyone has gone to join the choir invisible. All except for two simple-minded dogs. Who will feed and water Brownie and Apollo? In a dog eat dog world it’s time to leave the sofa and find a way to survive.   Presented in…

Archie’s War: My Scrapbook of the First World War 1914-1918

Ten-year-old Archie is mad about comics, so when he receives a scrapbook for his tenth birthday he expects to fill it with his favourite reading material. But it’s 1914 and Britain is about to go to war. Archie’s life is quickly turned upside down as he watches first his uncle and then his dad go…

Artemis Fowl – The Opal Deception

This is the fourth book about Artemis Fowl, the boy genius and his escapades in the fairy world. Like the other three titles, the sub-terranean world is a high-tech realm with high security and a cast of characters with varied talents and agendas. Artemis continues to be the only human who has a hope of…

Arthur and the Golden Rope

Within the Brownstone vault lie multiple treasures collected over thousands of years by that enterprising and adventurous family. But the most astounding treasure is the collection of books written by Brownstones through the ages, a collection which is sure to inspire an echoing series of Flying Eye books. This very first book is the incredible…

Arthur Quinn and the Fenris Wolf

Alan Early’s Arthur Quinn and the Fenris Wolf, the second book in Early’s Father of Lies trilogy, feels as fresh and as vibrant as the original. Three months have passed since Arthur and his friends stopped the trickster god Loki from taking over the world. But just when things seem to be returning to normal Arthur…

Atlas of Oddities

The Atlas of Oddities is a unique compendium of some of the most unusual events, objects and people that make our world such a fascinating place. From the prolific pen of Clive Gifford, author of over 150 books, and inspired by both his own travels and those of his parents who worked for an airline,…

Aubrey and the Terrible Yoot

Aubrey and the Terrible Yoot is a story of a quest with a difference. Aubrey’s fun-loving father, Jim, has fallen under a horrendous spell. Listless and moping, he can barely leave the house and seems to sink further and further under the spell of a mysterious force that Aubrey soon identifies as the Terrible Yoot.…

Australia Illustrated

In Australia Illustrated Tania McCartney has created her own eclectic schema for detailing quirky and eccentric icons of Australian life with multicultural perspectives. The popular culture tenor of the work is obvious in both text and image in this, the first of her many books which McCartney has illustrated as well as written. Organised with…

Avery McShane

Imagine you’re a nine year old boy. Now imagine an American, oil-drilling, ex-pat community in the middle of the Venezuelan jungle. Enter Avery McShane, his best friends – Todd and Billy, and his dog, Mati. They call themselves the Machacas, have a secret hideout, and for fun, go on banana-stealing missions to the local plantation. …

Barkbelly

Barkbelly is a wooden boy who hatched from an egg shortly after he fell to earth. He was adopted by Gable and Pumpkin Gantry. Barkbelly believed himself to be invulnerable and indestructible so he wasn’t affected by initial attempts of ostracise him. Looking after champion urchins (hedgehogs) proved the ideal job for a wooden boy…

Beaky Malone: World’s Greatest Liar

Barry Hutchison has form when it comes to comedy writing for children (The Shark-Headed Bear Thing and many more), and his new character Beaky Malone is another winner. If this was a film, the tagline would be: ‘What happens when the world’s biggest liar enters a truth machine?’ The set-up introduces us to Beaky’s dysfunctional…

Ben’s Magic Telescope

This book tells the story of Ben, who lives on the nineteenth floor of a tower block in an unattractive and heavily industrialised city. The book opens by presenting Ben’s view from the balcony of his apartment. The reader can see both the boy and the surrounding industrial buildings. The colours used are dull and…

Bicycling To The Moon

Timo Parvela is a teacher and a best-selling author in Finland where many of his books have been adapted for both the big and the small screen. The main characters in Bicycling To The Moon have their own TV show and the author does regular school tours where their adventures are read and discussed. The…

Bird

Bird is full of interesting ingredients. The story is narrated by Jewel who has grown up in a deeply unhappy household. Her silent, taciturn grandfather and her mournful father are Jamaican. They believe in totems, curses, duppies and restless spirits. Jewel’s more rational but equally depressed mother is from Mexico, a culture with its own magic,…

Blister

Alyssa Reed is an ordinary 10-year-old girl looking forward to the birth of her baby sister. Her parents and grandmother Daisy G. hope that the baby will be a new start for the whole family, which has had its share of troubles. But when little Lila Rose is stillborn, Alyssa’s world begins to fall apart.…

Blood Oath (Gladiator School: Book 1)

A story set in Ancient Rome with many contemporary echoes. Lucius’s world disintegrates when his father, Aquila, disappears having been accused of being a traitor. The family is forced to leave their villa and are helped by Uncle Ravilla. Quintus, Lucius’s elder brother, becomes a trainee gladiator and Lucius becomes a messenger at the Gladiator…

Bloodstone

Bloodstone is the sequel to Allan Borough’s Ironheart, which introduces the characters of India Bentley and Verity Brown, tech-hunters in a post-apocalyptic world. Knowledge of the first book is really essential to get full enjoyment from this story, as new comers will find it hard to grasp what exactly has occurred leading up to the…

Blue Moon Day

Blue Moon Day is a collection of short stories, each separated by part of a single story, like layers in a delicious and satisfying cake.  This overarching story is about a girl who, once in a blue moon, concocts a reason to stay home from school to read. She accompanies her mum in the car…

Books Books Books

Open the cover and let this book take you on a whirlwind tour of the British Library and its incredible collection, housed on 625 kilometres of shelves and spread over fifteen floors. With copies of every single book published in Ireland and the United Kingdom, as well as extensive catalogues of newspapers, maps and music,…

Bóthar an tSíoda

Léirmheas le Daríona McClafferty Tá an leabhar seo dírithe ar Bhóthar an tSíoda ón Eoraip  go dtí an tSín agus ar an stair a bhaineann leis. Tá sé leagtha amach go soiléir. Tá gach ceann de na sleachta gearr agus dírithe ar thopaicí áirithe. Tosaíonn an leabhar le dlúthcheangal idir Bóthar an tSíoda, an Eoraip  agus…

Breaking the Spell: Stories of Magic and Mystery from Scotland

This collection of ten Scottish folklore stories retold by Lari Don is a mixture of well-known tales such as the story of Tam Lin and others that are less familiar. Lari draws on her experiences as a storyteller in schools and libraries around Scotland to bring these tales to life. She is a wonderful storyteller…

Brendan and the Whale

It was through story that St Brendan first heard of the Land of the Promise of God and was thus inspired to set his mind to finding this wonderful place. And it is through Clare Maloney’s tremendously lyrical and catchy story that we follow the crew and St Brendan through tumult and tempest, peace and…

Brilliant

A Black Dog, depression, hangs over Dublin as recession bites – and only children can stop it. Uncle Ben has just lost his job and his house, and has moved in with Gloria and Raymonds’ parents. The children love Uncle Ben, and decide to help him to get rid of the Black Dog and recover…

Bríona ag Broinglóideach

This is a lovely children’s book about a girl named Bríona who dreams about adventures that happen to her and her family. It is aimed at an age group of between 6 and 8 and covers themes that are in the Irish curriculum such as the family, school and hobbies. It is of interest to…

Casper Candlewacks: Attack of the Brainiacs!

“Casper is the only non-idiot in Corne-on-the-Kobb, and that’s why he’s interesting”. Ivan Brett has taken the idea of the village idiot and turned it on its head. Poor Casper lives in a village of idiots, and as the only sensible lad around whenever there is a mystery to be solved it’s down to him…

Catch Your Death: Ruby Redfort, Book 3

Ruby Redfort, a child genius and code-cracking agent for the mysterious Spectrum, is not content with juggling her cryptography and her day to day activities as a normal thirteen-year-old. She wants to be a field agent but she’s finding the outdoor survival training a challenge. Not only is she failing for the first time in…

Catsup High Detective Agency

Ace detective Malarkey dips his claw into ink and writes out an advertisement for an assistant. The cats of Catsup have been vanishing and he’s going to need some help… help with special powers. The last thing he expects is a kitten. At first, Malarkey is sceptical, but young Sparkie with his new-found electrical abilities…

Charles Dickens and Friends

Retelling Dickens is a difficult business at the best of times. Here Williams recasts the format as well as the narrative; there are five novels crammed into the 46 pages of this large-format picturebook, with busy pictures, often twelve cells to a page, spilling over into marginalia with special detail for the sharp of eye.…

Cherry Green Story Queen

Have you ever felt like you were part of the wrong story? That’s exactly what it’s like for Mia, Billy, Juno and Kyle (who is a different story altogether). Stuck in a foster home, they all long for a different story to their lives… and they know they’ll just have to live with what they’ve…

Circle

Many readers will know Jeannie Baker’s work through her outstanding picturebooks such as the wordless Window, where page by page the reader follows the changes from a rural to an urban landscape, and Mirror, where links are made between two seemingly disparate world cultures. Her books are concerned with the issues, global and local, social…

Circle of Suspicion

I think you’ll know what I mean if I compare this book to the Famous Five – but with mobile phones. Take Vinnie, Troy, Steffi, Niamh and Sean (without Timmy the dog), a winking light in a spooky old house, a smuggling conspiracy, underground caves and you’ve a plot that will be familiar to all…

Circus of Thieves and the Comeback Caper

As if one Shank wasn’t enough… hot on the heels of thieving circus ringmaster Armitage comes his twin brother Zachary. Even more dastardly and devious, Zachary is plotting grown-up revenge for a childhood injustice: their mother’s gift to Armitage of a ‘tiny enormous’ lorry. And how better to get his own back than by sabotaging…

Clarice Bean, That’s Me

The work of author/illustrator Lauren Child needs no introduction; the appeal of the wonderfully creative, Charlie and Lola books having travelled the globe in both print and film. Clarice Bean, too, has already established herself as quite a teenage icon in the children's book world. Clarice Bean, That's Me, however, has only just made it…

Clementine Loves Red

This is an interesting book giving us, as it does, an interesting glimpse of rural Poland in Soviet times. At least that might interest adults. Children, I suspect, will be far more enthralled by the fun and mayhem of the story itself. Clementine was first published in 1970 in Poland and this is a translation…

Climbing A Monkey Puzzle Tree

This account of a 12-year-old Canadian schoolgirl set adrift in a third-rate English boarding school some time in the late sixties takes considerable risks with its style and its structure. Essentially it explores crises of identity and the uses of fantasy and imagination as either a help towards or a hindrance to teenage self-knowledge. The…

Cloud Busting

It comes as no surprise to learn that Cloud Busting won a Smarties Silver Book Award. It’s a cautionary school tale in verse on a familiar topic – an uncool new boy, a growing secret friendship, cruelty, betrayal, and finally, a heart-sore lesson. But it’s the mastery of the telling, and the apparent effortlessness of…

Colour Young Hippo (Series)

‘Brilliant stories, irresistible characters’ goes the blurb. I’m afraid I cannot agree. The books look good: strong covers, colour throughout, text at an appropriate level and size and broken up on the page. Most of the ingredients are there, but for one very important item – a really authentic, engaging story. Reviewing is subjective, merely…

Comic Adventures of Boots

This is a collection of three stories, each told in comic strip form. ‘Operation Fish Biscuit’ recounts Boots the cat’s scheme to acquire sunbathing space on an overcrowded wall. This backfires quite spectacularly. In ‘Pleased to meet you Madam Quark’, Madam Quark the swan, teaches Boots to swim. This speaks volumes for the cat’s charm,…

Coming to England

In Coming to England Floella Benjamin recounts the emigration of her family from the idyllic island of Trinidad to England. The book chronicles her life in Trinidad where she was born and lived until the age of 11. Benjamin gives a utopian glimpse into the beautiful family house, the wonderfully fragrant markets, the school and…

Comix (Archie’s Amazing Game; Freddy’s Fox; The Goose who Knew too Much; Arf and the Three Dogs)

Described as ‘new paperback treats for children who are reluctant to read’, all four books have brightly illustrated covers and employ the clever device of including captioned mug shots of the main characters on the front cover. And then on the title page a character addresses the reader directly and sets the scene for the…

Completely Crazy Poems

John Foster has always had impeccable taste in poetry. In these two little volumes of crazy and scary poems, we not only get the benefit of an imaginative selection but we also have the added bonus of some of his own creations being included. Here we find inspired groupings of poems in intriguing categories such…

Cool Kids Cook

I love this book. Simple, modern recipes are complemented with witty yet instructional illustration and gorgeous, fun photos featuring a diverse cast of kids enjoying themselves. Jenny Chandler is a cookery teacher in Leiths, among other prestigious schools, and it shows. This is no coffee-table book. There is no sense of worthiness here and absolutely…

Cool Mythology

All you ever wanted to know about mythology is captured in this ‘cool’ and extremely interesting book, which spans history in its quest to steep the reader in myths, folklore and legend from the four corners of the Earth. Legends and myths from North American Indian tribes, the Mayan, Aztecs, Incas, Romans, Greeks, Ancient Egypt,…

Count Krinkelfiend’s Quest

Part of the series ‘The Tall Tales of Dracula’s Daggers’, this book tells the tale of the dastardly Count Arnold Krinkelfiend and his quest to find the legendary dagger. It fails in its attempt to be funny and its plot fails to be engaging. It is packed with one-liners that are more irritating than amusing…

Countess Markievicz: An Adventurous Life

This volume of the Easter Rising Centenary In a Nutshell series focuses on Countess Constance Markievicz, the woman made famous by her involvement in the fight for Irish Independence. In this short biography Ann Carroll leads us through Markievicz’s life, from wealthy origins in rural Sligo, to her marriage to the Polish Count Casimir Markievicz,…

Create Your Own Spy Mission

The perfect book for a long journey, young readers will quite literally get drawn into Create Your Own Spy Mission by Irish brothers Andrew and Chris Judge. A fun, interactive story which invites the reader to draw, doodle, decide, fold and tear, this quirky little book is part comic, spy story, quiz and drawing book…

Create Your Own Superhero Epic

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No! It’s a book! (You must need glasses) That pretty much sets the tone for the third in a series of Create your own… books from the Judge Bros. and the results are ridiculously fun. Doodletown needs a superhero and you need to draw them. It is…

Curse of the Cockroach

Curse of the Cockroach is Kieran Fanning’s fourth book in his Code Cracker series. It is a puzzle adventure involving Lisa and her friend Sam who become caught up in an intergalactic adventure while on a visit to Sam’s Uncle Dave – a mysterious character who works as a scientist for a top secret company.…

Daid Dearmadach

Daid Dearmadach is a collection of twelve poems in Irish which deal with various scenarios, such as dancing class in school, the arrival of a new baby into a family, and the panic caused by a bat flying into a bedroom. The world these poems describe is one of fun and excitement, and this is…

Daisy and the Trouble with Burglars

Daisy’s back and she’s in more trouble than ever! When a number of burglaries happen right in Daisy’s very own town, there is a lot of worry and excitement. Two houses on a nearby street have been robbed, not to mention the fish and chip shop. The burglars even got away with a lot of…

Danger is Really Everywhere

Danger is everywhere or at least it would be if it weren’t for the world’s leading dangerologist, ‘Docter’ Noel Zone. With ‘Docter’ Noel to guide us we just might make it through life alive. In this third book in the Danger is Everywhere series, O’Doherty and Judge take their antidote to the bubble-wrapped world we…

Dan’s Angel

This is the most exciting book for children on art and painting that I have seen in a long time. Lauren Child is a witty choice of illustrator, as we are already used to seeing the quirky mix of photo collage, computer-generated flat colour and delicious characterisation in her previous titles (such as Clarice Bean…

Darkmouth: Chaos Descends

Full of danger, intrigue but also lots of humour, Chaos Descends is the third part of Shane Hegarty’s thrilling Darkmouth series. Ten months after almost destroying both Darkmouth and the Infected Side in order to rescue his dad, Finn is getting ready to take part in his completion ceremony, and become a real Legend Hunter,…

Dawn Undercover

Dawn Undercover, the second novel from newcomer Anna Dale, is a promising idea that never quite delivers. Self-effacing but observant Dawn Buckle is recruited by secret organisation P.S.S.T. (Pursuit of Scheming Spies and Traitors) to track down Top Spy turned Traitor, Murdo Meek. The premise: that Dawn’s very ordinariness and forgetableness make her the ideal…

Deadly Detectives: Top Tips To Track Wildlife

Whether we are talking about snow leopards in the Himalayas or foxes making their way through our own back gardens, we all share a fascination with finding out more about the creatures with whom we share the world. Tracking and observing wildlife can be tricky business, however. In this book, linked to the BBC series,…

Death and the Arrow

I will begin by nailing my colours to the mast: I am not a fan of the murder mystery, and never even got into the whole Hardy Boys thing when I was a young reader; but I have to confess that I really enjoyed this book. Chris Priestley has managed to create a thoroughly engaging…

Deep Water

This is the latest book about the Strega-Borgia family, their butler, nanny and pets. If you have already read one of these you will find all the usual ingredients – plenty of humour, magic, action and suspense. Within the world of fantasy and magic, the two older children are very recognisably real-life characters. The others…

Demeter and Persephone

An ancient story retold. This book is a version of the story of Persephone’s abduction by Hades and the subsequent search for her by her broken hearted mother Demeter. The language used is very accessible to young readers of all levels yet it conveys the classical roots of the story. The short, direct sentences add…

Diary of a Time Traveller

If you could travel backwards in time, what people, events and places would you most like to see? Such is the challenge given to the reader by this book. This approach cleverly allows Stevenson and Long to escape the straightjacket of the history timeline and avoid the ‘why wasn’t X or Y included’ standard criticism…

Dinosaur Scramble (Downtown Dinosaurs)

Dinosaur Scramble is the latest title in the Downtown Dinosaurs series by author Jeanne Willis and illustrator Arthur Robins. Our hero Darwin, a young stegosaurus, is delighted when his mother lays an egg as he has always wanted a brother or sister to play with. But mayhem ensues when mad Uncle Loops is left in charge…

Dixie O’Day in the Fast Lane

The subject matter of Dixie O’Day in the Fast Lane is one that has been a success for years upon years and undoubtedly always will, that is, the great car race! Between near cliff falls, getting stuck on tram lines, break downs and getting lost, there’s excitement from beginning to end. Throughout the seven chapters we meet some…

Dogbird and Other Mixed-up Tales

This is a first ‘chapter’ book – but with three stories in one and 186 pages, it is rather bulkier that the normal fare for this age group. This is only a problem if it intimidates a tentative soul with just an experimental toe in the water, otherwise it’s good value for money. The three…

Donna Wilson’s Creative Creatures: A Step-by-Step Guide to Making Your Own Creations

Meet Donna Wilson’s knitted friends Ralf and Rill, Olive Owl, and all other creatures of this  lovely illustrated story and craft book. The book starts with sewing tips for beginners and step-by-step instructions are offered for each project. All the instructions are easy to follow and the end result is very satisfying. The materials for…

Don’t Eat This Book

This is an activity book with a difference: it is totally crazy. The instructions on one page suggest “Make this runny” – Run paint down this page in different colours. Let it dry. Add more. The following page starts with a warning: "Don’t ever turn to the next page". Of course, I did turn the…

Doodle Town

When I was a kid I did not doodle just to doodle. I always needed a project. I later tried to study fine art but my lecturers politely suggested I might be more suited for illustration. Art as a project. Art with a purpose. Which probably explains my later career as a graphic designer. Give…

Éalú ón Zú agus Drámaí Eile

Éiríonn go sármhaith le hÁine Ní Ghlinn samhlaíocht an léitheora a mhúscailt sa chnuasach seo de thrí dhráma nua-aimseartha véarsaíochta, ina sníomhtar le chéile téamaí uilíocha ar nós saoirse agus grá. Pléitear saol an teaghlaigh sa dráma Cúitsí Cúitsí Cú ina bhfeicimid Úna óg mar fheighlí don chéad uair. Insíonn na hainmhithe sa dráma Éalú…

Earwig and the Witch

This posthumously published novella by Diana Wynne Jones is typical of her late style and a poignant reminder of what we have lost. Written in brisk, no-nonsense prose, it tells the story of young Earwig, an orphan with a giantsized ego living contentedly in an orphanage where she always gets her own way.  Kidnapped by a middle-aged witch looking for an extra…

Einstein: The Girl Who Hated Maths

The continued pairing of John Agard and Satoshi Kitamura, following Points of View with Professor Peekaboo, works brilliantly in this collection of forty poems with a mathematical theme. Through the story of a little girl who hated maths, the authors introduce the very young reader to basic mathematical concepts and some of the world’s greatest…
X