Stuck at home with his hideous grandmother, George decides to make her a medicine all by himself, with unintended, though not unwelcome, consequences. Disclaimer: We will not take responsibility for your child trying the same. Yours Sincerely, Giraffe is a Japanese tale about a friendship between an African Giraffe and his pen friend, a penguin.
With beautifully simple illustrations and a hope-filled ending, it is an ideal introduction to Japanese literature. The same goes for weddings. Peake has contributed an introduction and the book is full of facts about how space travel works and what to do if you want to be an astronaut yourself. On some occasions, we earn revenue if you click the links and buy the products, but we never allow this to bias our coverage.
The reviews are compiled through a mix of expert opinion and real-world testing.
Monologues : Comedy
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Janet Street-Porter. John Rentoul. Chuka Ummuna. Shappi Khorsandi. Gina Miller. Our view. Child has such a dry sense of humour and a knack for talking intelligently to young readers. Plus of course, her mix of collage and illustration is colourful, funky and stylish. As a result, this post-modern retelling of a classic fairytale is essential reading for girls and boys who prize quirkiness over convention.
Picturebooks like this are brilliant for exploring concepts like friendship. Adapted for TV by Charlie Higson, this was the first in a series about an absent-minded boffin and his bumbling friend Colonel Dedshott. Still funny and fresh, despite references to housekeepers and library cards from the period in which it was written.
Get them learning science early, with playful picturebooks like this romp through the world of micro-organisms. Explore how we catch a cold, what bacteria go into yoghurt and all kinds of other fascinating facts, simply and entertainingly explained. After his family is murdered, a toddler wanders into a cemetery where he finds himself adopted and raised by its inhabitants yes, the dead ones and a guardian who seems to hover between the living world and the afterlife.
Children learn so much from listening to us talk, long before they can express themselves in words. A stranger in a foreign world is always a good vehicle for comedy and a chance to explore acceptance and understanding. Especially when the hero of this odyssey is a charming, accident-prone bear.
Rosoff has an easy, flowing narrative style and an eye for the remarkable in the everyday, which makes her books crackle with tension and detail. A deservedly acclaimed read. Can he, his sister Meg and his friend Calvin free his dad in this sci-fi caper?
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This pacey spy thriller follows the fortunes of undercover agents, all aged between 10 and 17, who work for an organization called Cherub. The fantasy was concocted by Carroll on a riverboat trip as a way of amusing the three young daughters of a friend. The rest is history. While reading bedtime stories, Herb accidentally falls into a book and finds himself in a perilous adventure where he encounters all the characters from classic fairy tales. Although you can enjoy the stories of Ratty, Mole, Badger and Toad in cartoons with young children, the novel is a more densely woven and evocative tale celebrating the countryside and companionship, better suited to older readers.
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Find out in a series of rhyming challenges. Funny, smart female-role-model stuff. Sophie and Mummy are having tea in the kitchen when a tiger arrives and decides to hang around a while, eating them out of house and home. Family, school, everyday events and language itself are explored in these magical verses. This bright and breezy picturebook stands squarely with the dreamers. Mishaps abound as the book reveals Strong as a master of quirky stories for young readers.
As silly as it sounds. Allan Ahlberg and his wife met at teacher training college and created many quietly funny storybooks together before her death in The classics continue to enchant, including this detailed little book throughout which young readers are encouraged to find fairy tale and nursery characters on each page. In his letters home he tells his family all about his adventures. Great fun.
This was the first full-length novel in a series about a brother and sister and their crime-busting friends. Mr Big is strong and tough, but also a bit of a softy. However, everyone is too scared to come near him to discover this, so how can he show them his nice side? Fern has a pet pig named Wilbur and as he grows fatter, he eventually faces the destiny of all the pigs on the farm.
However, with the help of a talking spider called Charlotte, Wilbur might be saved. This modern jewel follows an ordinary chap who finds his house demolished and the Earth destroyed in order to make way for a hyperspace bypass. The original radio comedy format ensures a tight, pacy read as Dent is bounced around the universe.
The relationship between the parent dogs and their puppies is lovingly explored and the search unfolds as a thrilling adventure. The author of the Mr Benn series has a talent for playful picturebooks that concisely express something of the quirks and contradictions of the human condition. Here, a powerful General is furious when his invading troops meet no resistance in the last unconquered territory and instead befriend its people.
Three children who live in an orphanage under the uncaring custody of social workers and therapists decide to run away. Their escape is perilous, but when they meet a girl named Heaven Eyes, there seems to be some small hope in their otherwise bleak world. Almond at his thought-provoking best. In a community dominated by power and battles, a misfit Viking teenager rescues and befriends an injured dragon.
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Can the two outsiders unite to be accepted and live happily? But one night, Star is not there and Fox must venture into the world alone and make new friends. A funny picturebook fable about two hapless amphibians. Not all picturebooks are for toddlers. Scottish poet and playwright Carol Ann Duffy created this darkly beautiful story for older children.