Children of Green Knowe – Lucy Boston — August 13, 2020

Children of Green Knowe – Lucy Boston

A haunted manor in the English countryside, home to great-grandmother Oldknow, holds many secrets. Tolly’s visit to Green Knowe is filled with adventure and mystery and stories from great-grandmother Oldknow.

I really enjoyed this book at first, I was hooked from the moment I started reading. I wanted to know more, to find out more stories and discover more about Green Knowe.

About half way through the book, I started to fall out of love with it. I found that the plot wasn’t really progressing and I didn’t feel like there was much character development either. By the end I was ready for it to end and wasn’t left wanting more or with any questions as I would with most books.

I think had there of been more of a plot and character development, this could have been a really engaging book loved by many. However, younger readers may enjoy this book, as it is simple and short and may be a good introduction to shorter novels (and classics) as it it just over 100 pages.

Clever Polly and the Stupid Wolf – Catherine Storr — August 11, 2020

Clever Polly and the Stupid Wolf – Catherine Storr

When Polly answered the door to a wolf who wanted to eat her up, she decided that she wasn’t frightened, and she would out-wit the stupid wolf.

I liked the premise of this book, typically the wolf is seen as someone to be scared of and this book makes the wolf less intimidating for young readers. Polly was a likeable character and throughout you are rooting for her to out-wit the wolf.

It was nice to read a book where a young girl was capable of outwitting a wolf and being brave enough to stand up for herself. I think readers will take away the idea that you are capable and able to stand up for yourself regardless of gender stereotypes.

I liked that each chapter was linked to a well-known fairy tale, such as the three little pigs, making the plot easy to follow and will support children’s prediction skills. It also meant that the book felt familiar, making it a fun and easy read.

I read the book after finding out that the author wrote it to help her daughter overcome her phobia. This book was entertaining and would be a good book to read aloud, but it wasn’t a particularly memorable read for me.

Nevermoor- Jessica Townsend — November 15, 2018

Nevermoor- Jessica Townsend

Goodreads Synopsis – A cursed girl escapes death and finds herself in a magical world – but is then tested beyond her wildest imagination
Morrigan Crow is cursed. Having been born on Eventide, the unluckiest day for any child to be born, she’s blamed for all local misfortunes, from hailstorms to heart attacks–and, worst of all, the curse means that Morrigan is doomed to die at midnight on her eleventh birthday.
But as Morrigan awaits her fate, a strange and remarkable man named Jupiter North appears. Chased by black-smoke hounds and shadowy hunters on horseback, he whisks her away into the safety of a secret, magical city called Nevermoor.
It’s then that Morrigan discovers Jupiter has chosen her to contend for a place in the city’s most prestigious organization: the Wundrous Society. In order to join, she must compete in four difficult and dangerous trials against hundreds of other children, each boasting an extraordinary talent that sets them apart – an extraordinary talent that Morrigan insists she does not have. To stay in the safety of Nevermoor for good, Morrigan will need to find a way to pass the tests – or she’ll have to leave the city to confront her deadly fate

My thoughts – Although this book took a while to read, I really enjoyed it. It was hard to find time to read it with university and life being so hectic but when I got the chance to read it I loved it. I had no idea that what happened at the end would happen, and I really liked that. It was such a shock when it happened. It’s got such an interesting plot, and I would love to read the sequel at some point to see what happens next.

Classroom ideas – I think it’s a really good book to read for pleasure with your class. One classroom idea would be to look into the characters in the book and delve deeper into what they are thinking and feeling at key parts of the story. You could also draw the illustrations to accompany parts of the story. There are so many interesting events that happen in the book that you could look at. You could do diary writing, or newspaper articles about the events that happen.

The secret lives of royals – Shalini Dua |Book Review — August 16, 2018

The secret lives of royals – Shalini Dua |Book Review

*Goodreads synopsis – Olivia can’t take it anymore. She’s had enough of the big city and it’s lack of fulfilling her dreams. Then, just when she’s about to give up and move home, out of the blue, she is offered her dream job. Olivia is suspicious but that could just be the New York in her. She decides not to pull at threads. Despite her best efforts to remain blissfully oblivious, the secret to her life upgrade is soon uncovered when she finds herself to be part of a secret society. Olivia learns that there is a thin curtain separating our world from theirs. Just beneath the surface, an entirely different one exists. One that is controlled by those of Royal lineage. The chosen ones, the Royals, hold the fate of the world in their hands. Will Olivia be able to bear the weight of the crown? Confessions of a shopaholic meets the Adjustment Bureau, this contemporary fairytale is both relatable,e and aspirational. Taking a look at the current balance of media and power with a healthy dose of humour, fashion, food and wanderlust.

My thoughts – At times the plot was a little slow, and had me wondering where it would go. Overall it was a fairly enjoyable book, it wasn’t one of my favourites though. Something about the book just didn’t excite me like others do.

I didn’t really connect with the characters too much. I don’t think there was enough character development throughout the book, and I just didn’t emphasise with them like I think it was intended.

I feel like it’s intended for a young audience, as it’s quite a simple book, so early teens and slightly younger would probably enjoy this book more than I did. But it got me back into reading, so it wasn’t all bad. The plot was a good plot, I just don’t think it was executed quite as well as it could have been.

Have you read this book yet? What are your thoughts on it?

The BFG – Roald Dahl — October 26, 2017

The BFG – Roald Dahl


Synopsis – Who would believe that giants really exist, and that they eat human beings whilst they sleep at night, apart from one giant, the big friendly giant, who goes around giving people dreams. How will the big react when Sophie sees him giving out dreams one night, and how will they stop the other giants from eating humans?

My thoughts – I love all Roald Dahl books, there something really magical and special about Dahl’s writing that transports me back to my childhood. I read this book with my brother and he was laughing throughout the book at the words that Dahl has created. I loved the illustrations by Quentin Blake that are dotted throughout the book.

Classroom ideas – One idea is to create dream jars and ask children to write their dreams inside it. You could also look at the Queen and Buckingham palace, which could lead to a history unit on kings and queens. The class could come up with more made up words and their meanings like Dahl does in the book. There are a lot of similes used to describe the BFG, the children could come up with some more similes for the BFG or to describe the other giants or Sophie. The children could make dream catchers using paper plates and string. You could try making frogscottle from the book using a recipe online.