By Katherine Woodfine | 20 December, 2014
As part of our 2014 Christmas Special, we answered your festive book queries and helped recommend the perfect books to put under the Christmas tree this year. Here are some of our recommendations:
Activity books to keep little ones amused:
Maps Activity Book by Aleksandra Mizielinska and Daniel Mizielinski
Secret Garden by Johanna Basford
Animal Kingdom by Millie Marotta
Usborne Sticker/Activity Books (especially the dolls house and advent calendar)
Write & Draw Your Own Comics by Louie Stowell and Jess Bradley
Write Your Own Storybook by Louie Stowell and Jane Chisholm
Super Book For Superheroes by Jason Ford
A nearly-16-yr-old who (despite being an author’s son) normally only reads books if forced on him by his English Teacher. Likes: Minecraft, football, stinking out the house with teenage lad smells. And (slightly less predictably) tap dancing and musicals.
The Maze Runner by James Dashner
Will Grayson, Will Grayson by David Levithan and John Green
Fever Pitch by Nick Hornby
Winger by Andrew Smith
A Good School by Richard Yates
Catcher In The Rye by JD Salinger
The 8-10 category is one that I always get questions about. Newly Independent readers – what should they pick up? It’s such an exciting moment in the reading journey – full of potential, opportunity and discovery!
Tom Gates by Liz Pichon
The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
Swallows & Amazons by Arthur Ransome
Lauren St John
Non-fiction by Nicola Davies
Dorling Kindersley titles.
Looking for ideas for daughter who read 880 books in a year. All she wants is books but it’s hard finding unread age-appropriate ones.
Puffin Classics e.g. A Dog So Small by Philippa Pearce
Hesperus Minor range of children’s classics
The Bell Family by Noel Streatfeild
The Little Grey Men by BB
The Secret Hen House Theatre by Helen Peters
Beswitched; Magicalamity; The Whiz Pop Chocolate Shop by Kate Saunders
The Edge Chronicles by Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell
Best non-heteronormative children’s books – and any story featuring a gay santa.
My True Love Gave To Me edited by Stephanie Perkins (the David Levithan story features one gay santa)
The Sleeper In The Spindle by Neil Gaiman and Chris Riddell
Also two examples of middle-grade books where gay families are an unquestioned part of the story’s world:
Mountwood School For Ghosts by Toby Ibbotson
The Pea series by Susie Day
Five year old girl who’s done Roald Dahl – likes cats, drawing pictures of cats, the IT Crowd, Wagamama.
Ottoline And The Yellow Cat by Chris Riddell
Weasels by Elys Dolan
Dixie O’Day by Shirley Hughes and Clara Vuillamy
Squishy McFluff by Pip Jones and Ella Okstad
Old Possum’s Book Of Practical Cats by TS Eliot
(Moone Boy by Chris O’Dowd – possibly too old for a 5 year old, but she might like the IT Crowd connection)
I’d love book suggestions for a pre-teen bookworm who is an advanced reader, but is squeamish about “yucky stuff” (which can mean either gore or kissing). She has read widely (Tolkien to Dickens, plus tons of YA) and I’m totally stumped for Christmas book picks!
The Princess Bride by William Goldman
The Letter For The King by Tonke Dragt
The Once And Future King by TE White
Any non-picture-books with hippos as protagonists?
Alienography by Chris Riddell
Best poetry book for my v readish 9-year-old nephew?
The Rattle Bag by Seamus Heaney & Ted Hughes
Michael Rosen’s A-Z of Poetry
I Like This Poem edited by Kaye Webb
Christmas Poems edited by Gaby Morgan and illustrated by Axel Scheffler
Any Ahlberg verse
What to buy a 2 yr old bookworm who loves nothing better than nursery rhymes. Ad nauseam. I think she would enjoy poetry. What have you got?!
Over The Hills and Far Away edited by Elizabeth Hammill
Hairy Maclary by Lynley Dodd
Each Peach Pear Plum by Janet and Allan Ahlberg
Any Julia Donaldson title
Macavity by TS Eliot illustrated by Arthur Robins