One can never have enough socks…

“One can never have enough socks,” said Dumbledore. “Another Christmas has come and gone and I didn’t get a single pair. People will insist on giving me books.” 

Christmas is such a wonderful time. The air is crisp, the leaves are crunchy, the stars fill the sky, the shoppers bombard through one another to find that perfect gift or else the World will collapse. That sounds about right doesn’t it?

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The Big One Hundred Challenge

I’ve always considered myself a pretty good authority when it comes to children’s literature, however I’ve recently noticed a few gaps in my knowledge, gaps that involve some fairly significant books. I thought I could just start picking out a few popular titles from the shelf, but that seems like a perfect recipe for chaos. I like a system; a well formed, well thought out list. Continue reading

A Dark Tale…

It’s hard knowing where to start with a blog. How do I narrow down all the options? Do I start with war books? Swashbuckling adventure stories? Mysteries? Fantasies? I’ll do my best to cover it all but for now I’ll start with an enquiry I received recently.

A mother and son approached me a few days ago requesting dark books. The boy’s teacher had said that he needs to start reading “darker books”. The boy had been reading the Tom Gates series by L Pichon – and although I think these are great books and I will get onto them eventually, I’ve seen many children latch onto them and find it difficult to move on to more challenging reading. Variety is the spice of life after all.

Dark can mean many things; it could describe an eerie ghost story, or perhaps something more serious such as death. In this case, we’ll discuss stories with a creepy or macabre edge to them as I don’t want to launch this blog on the subject of death, but I will cover it at some point. So here it is, my guide to creepy kids books:

Picture Books

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THE DARK by Lemony Snicket

On the surface this book is terrifying. You may ask ‘Who on Earth would give this to a child?’ but the surprise ending makes it worth it. In this book, Lazlo is lured down to the basement by a mysterious voice, but what he finds down there is not what you’d expect. This definitely gets your heart racing but you’ll finish it with a smile. Continue reading