Secondly – those grey columns contain the ENTIRE novel. Oh yes. I could have my very favourite book of all time up on the wall!
Isn’t it a genius idea? And it’s not just Pride & Prejudice – oh no. There’s a range of books to choose from – I’m loving Peter Pan for a child’s room too:Read More
Have you read Elizabeth Hunter’s Elemental Series yet?
You should. You really really should.
Particularly as the first one is FREE on Kindle. I tried it out – and was instantly absorbed into the whole series, barely coming up for air.
And I don’t even LIKE Vampire stories.
Beautifully written exciting storyline, sizzling love story… fabulous.
Anyhoo, inside the covers of this remarkably unknown set of books are some proper wordsmith treats.
Little phrases which leap off the page and demand to be re-read.
This mug is toting one such of my absolute favourites – stuck to my wall on a post-it note long before I saw there was a shop that I could actually buy a mug emblazoned with it.
Available from Elizabeth Hunter’s Book Swag Cafepress store, you can snap up one of your own (you don’t even need to have read the book to appreciate that quote, now, do you?) for a bite under £8.50.Read More
One of our top tips for a Chrsitmas book this year – When It Snows is SUCH a magical book.
The story is very simple; when it snows, the world is blanketed and stops. But for one little boy and his teddy, there seems to be no reason not to keep right on going. And there’s a clever little twist at the end to make a small child think, blink… and then want to read it again.
But alongside the charming story run the stunning illustrations – warm, wild and breathtakingly evocative.
We LOVE this book, and seriously hope that Father Christmas has enough to be sure it finds it’s way into every child’s stocking this year. If he doesn’t, you might like to know that ‘When It Snows’ is currently available at The Book People for a snowflake under £3…Read More
You kn0w how, sometimes, you come across a company or website that is so brilliantly perfectly simple that you are staggered that you never found it before? Well – AbeBooks is going to be one of THOSE moments for you.
I found them through a newspaper article a couple of years ago – listing the 50 Books Every Child Should Read. Since then I’ve been a regular visitor, have never ever failed to be made happy – nor to be so surprised when I mention them to people and am met with blank stares of the never-heard-of-them variety.
So – having solved three more book dilemmas* this Christmas I am determined to wave their flag under your nose. Particularly in light of the fact that they have beaten a certain large (*cough* non-tax-paying) conglomerate on price and postage speed all three times.
So if you’re looking for a book – in or out of print – try Abebooks first. Many are free postage, and nearly always the price is comparable, if not better than, High Street bookstores.
Plus there’s the happy knowledge that you are also supporting your local Independent book Shop. Because, you see, Abebooks do not sell books. oh no. They are simply a whizz-bang clever marketplace – you put your request in, and they search the database of every bookshop in the country to find your book for you. If it’s new, you’re told. If it’s used, you’re told what condition it’s in. You can get first editions, limited editions, rare covers, signed copies… or just a plain old fashioned 1960′s Enid Blyton Famous Five for £2. And there’s always decent customer service – because you’re talking to small independent shops with real live booksellers who live and die by their reputation.
And on top of all that fabulousness, there’s book news and interesting articles too (I am personally making notes on this week’s A&C Black feature – I *want* those Wodehouse books!).
(*What did I buy? Well, that would be telling. I’ll let you know in January when I won’t be spoiling any surprises… :) )
*ahem* SNR 0509-675 was a type 1a supernova in the Large Magellanic Cloud, a satellite galaxy of our own, which occurred around 400 years ago. The remnant of the explosion is a bubble of gas some 23 light years across, and expending at more than 18 million km/h (11.2 million mi/h). In January 2012, astronomer’s studying the remnant proved that the supernova was caused by two white dwarf stars colliding. The remnant is around 160,000 light years away…
So now you know!
And if you want to find out more wonderful geeky facts about our planet, our solar system, people, plants…well pretty much anything really (and let’s face it – we ALL want to see the slam dunking parrot) then get your hands on this year’s edition of the Guinness World Records, we have…and we just can’t put it down!
There’s even a new augmented reality app so you can see them in 3D!
2013 Guinness World Records available form all good book shops – and Amazon have it for £9 right now.Read More
Seen over on the always-brilliant Burp! Boutique – the new set of picture books from Nosy Crow, including the Pip and Posy range by Axel Scheffler. LOVE these books.Read More
Zoo-wee-mama! Jeff Kinney could be coming to a venue near you!
The best-selling author of the globally successful Diary of a Wimpy Kid series, will be talking about his latest book ‘Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Third Wheel’ & his involvement in the Wimpy Kid films, including the latest, ‘Dog Days’.
Packed with lots of Wimpified fun and games, this event is great family entertainment and a must for all Diary of a Wimpy Kid fans. Suitable for 8+
27 Nov: Cambridge Corn Exchange, Cambridge – 6.30pm
Visit the Box Office website or 01223 357851
29 Nov: City Hall, Civic Centre, Cardiff – 6.30pm
Visit the Box Office website
30 Nov: Westlands Ballroom, Yeovil – 6.30pm
Tickets Available from Waterstones Yeovil 01935 479832 or Taunton 01823
1st Dec: Newcastle City Hall, Newcastle – 1pm
Visit the Box Office website or 0191 2778030
2nd Dec: Westfield, Shepherd’s Bush, London
Details of this very special event, soon to be announced!
Also get your teacher to register your class to watch:
Jeff Kinney Puffin Virtually Live – 28th Nov
2 – 2.45pm
A LIVE interactive webcast – like an online author visit!
LOVE this little lamp! Since falling in klve with my kindle I have been hunting for the perfect light-of-pretty that lets me read it whilst the husband is catching up with Match of the Day (I much prefer a small light on my book to having the big lamp in the room on).
And so, I was made mucho happy-oh when I spotted this perfect little anglepoise lamp for books!
Isn’t it gorgeous?
The Tiny Tim Book Light comes in red or black, and is a smidge under £8 over at Just Mustard.Read More
As a child, opening up a book and seeing the official ‘This is MINE!’ sticker was always brilliant (maybe because I was the last of four, and very little actually was ‘mine’, most things were my sisters first…).
So when The Wise House sent these Mac & ninny bookplates to review, I couldn’t resist them. They’re GORGEOUS!
And much nicer than I expected, actually. The cardboard packaging folds out into a dandy little library card, so you can keep track if you send your books out, and of course Pink just adores having ‘This Book Belongs To…’ in her favourite books.
The quality of them is excellent, the stickiness of the sticky is good enough to keep it stuck for years, I’d say. Plus, the designs are fabulous! We had the fairy plates, but I also really love the Owls (and the kitchen one, and the London one…) – and would totally use them in my OWN books.
At under £5 for a pack of 12 plates, these make a great little gift, and will be a perfect Stocking Filler in a couple of months time..Read More
When Idealo asked me to join in with the Foodies100 Holiday Reads Club, I jumped at the opportunity. £25 to create a decent summer holiday reading list?
But crikey it was hard.
Narrowing it down, I mean.
OBVIOUSLY it’s not hard choosing books.
But making a perfect reading list for a holiday – and one you know is going to Go Public too – is harder than it first seemed.
It was a tough job. But someone had to do it. Thankfully, being able to choose kindle versions the money stretched even further – there are some amazing bargains to be had if you look. So here’s mine…
- Empress of Rome by Kate Quinn – £4.99 – I read ‘Mistress of Rome’ a couple of years ago, and fell in love. This is the sequel, and it promises to be just as enthralling as the first. I’m already a few chapters in, and loving it. Set amid gladiatorial, slave-driven ancient Rome it’s utterly absorbing and real – you’ll feel weird looking up and not feeling the sun baking your head or hear the water trickling in the cool marble atrium nearby…
- Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins – £3.47 – yes, I finally succumbed to the inevitable. Actually, I was tricked into it; I was walking the dog, the Archers omnibus (sssh!) finished, and my ipod clicked over to the first Hunger Games audio book No.1 son had ordered from his Audible allowance. I was hooked, and can’t wait to read part II on my own, without the interference of the rather irritating American voice on the audio book version.
- The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel by Deborah Moggach – £3.67 – Usually I like to read the book before I see the film. But I’d never heard of the book, was utterly totally enchanted by the film, and consequently have very high hopes of this being a perfect read.
- Artemis Fowl and the Time Paradox by Eoin Colfer - £5.49 – Another series I have my son to thank for. Again, I’ve listened to the earlier books on audio (thankfully they have the perfect narrator), and this is the next I need (he’s way ahead, and was counting the days to the release last week of the very last one in the series. Sob). If you’ve not read them, I suggest you do so – one of those brilliant children’s books that crosses the boundaries and makes fabulous adult reading too. The 9yr old has just started reading the first, and the husband is seriously loving bedtime reading at the moment!
- Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert – £2.99 – No I’ve never read it, yes I know I should have, yes this summer I plan to rectify that.
- To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee – £3.46 – my ultimate summer comfort read. It’s never a bad time to re-acquaint myself with this old friend, and whilst I’d never travel with my prized (battered & ancient) 1960′s paperback, it’s about time I had it on my kindle, so why not splash out on the 50th Anniversary edition?
- An Idiot Abroad: The Travel Diaries of Karl Pilkington by Karl Pilkington & Ricky Gervais - 20p! – A travelogue that makes me laugh. At this price how could I not?
- 50 Economics Ideas You Really Need to Know by Edmund Conway – 20p! – I love the idea of this, and can’t wait to dip into it. I’ll admit it, I often feel out of my depth when talking about Economics, and I hate not being able to explain things to my children because I don’t truly understand them myself. This book is going to edjermecate me this summer – apparently in a simple and graspable way. And that’s a pretty cheap way to gain a some teaching in Economic Principles, I think.
So – that’s mine – what do you think? What’s going in your suitcase this year?
This post is part of the Idealo Holiday Reads Challenge on the Foodies100 – make sure you use the Idealo Price Comparison site when you’re Foodie shopping.Read More
My girl loves to draw/colour/paint/stick/sketch/design/embellish. So far so ordinary.
But my 9yr old boy loves to draw too. But colouring books for older boys? They don’t exist. I have SEARCHED for ones that don’t contain bunnies and flowers and clowns. Not happening.
So imagine my joy when I fell across Rosie Flo’s site.
Genius it is – but not jst for boys. The whole Rose Flo range are the same. Why limit a child’s imagination to colouring between the lines?
In the Rosie Flo books, there’s figures aplenty – but no heads and no limbs.
There’s a whole range of books more acceptable to the girls, and two with very boyish themes – though I have to say that the 9yr old was very happy designing the wearers of the outfits in his sister’s book…
The styling of all the books is excellent too – vintage, with not a hint of dullness. Witty, clever, detailed… if it’s not silly to say, there’s simply nothing too childish. These are fabulous activity books which stretch above your average toddler’s ability to scribble to something which will keep older children occupied for hours. They make fabulous gifts, and are definitely a must this summer for long journeys!
Rosie Flo’s full range can be seen on their site, and all can be bought at Amazon. Prices are reasonable at under £4.50 for a colouring book, and I’ve already earmarked the sticker book for our trip to France this summer!Read More
I really love this idea, and think it could be something very special.
This isn’t just a diary for a Dad to write in – this is a ‘journal of a lifetime’, something for a Dad to write down his life story.
Great for new Dads, but even greater for our own Dads, discovering the man behind the parent, recording all those stories and places that will one day be gone.
Only recently I was looking at old photographs of my Grandmother as a girl, and I would give my right arm to know the stores behind the people and places in them with her. But she died many years ago, and it’s too late to do anything but pick up fragments from the family I have left. So maybe this Father’s Day you should give yourself a gift, and have your Father complete one of these – it’ll be something to treasure for always.
You can buy the lifetime journals at From You To Me, and they have a special Father’s day promotion of FREE P&P if you buy before the 15th.Read More
**we first posted this last May, but I’ve just come across it, exclaimed aloud a lot and resolved to post it again…*
This is a very clipped part of the article, reproduced with kind permission from Richard Davies of AbeBooks – you can see the original article here.
“Reading should be an essential part of any childhood. Teachers and schools can teach you many useful things (although I’ve not used calculus in my adult life) but a steady diet of literature can ensure a young person’s education never ends.
Below are 50 books that I and a few other colleagues recommend for a typical 11-year-old – some can be read at a much younger age while others are verging on the young adult genre. Some of these books I have revisited as an adult while reading to my eldest. Some are ageless classics and others are hyper modern. Some are sets or series so you are actually receiving more than 50 recommendations.
Many people, let alone an 11-year-old, would be hard-pushed to read all these books in 12 months. Mr Gove’s heading in the right direction – let’s just get young people reading.”
I showed it to Katy, and we spent literally 20 minutes Oooh!-ing, Yes!-ing, Oh-D’you-Remember?-ing, and long pauses whilst we drooled over the list. We both came to the same conclusion – we fully intend to work our way right through it.
Although the list says for 11yr olds, most of these I’ll be reading to my 8 & 9yr old too. Because they love to be read to at bedtime. And now I’M about to start choosing the books – because I know that no matter how much they dismiss the cover, one chapter in to some of these and they’ll be utterly hooked. Just like I was 30 years ago.
I’m also very tired of my children’s sad penchant for dismissing books in old used covers, wanting shiny new reprints even of old classics – this time they’ll be getting 2nd hand much-loved battered varieties to read from.
50 Books Every Child Should Read
(We are finalists in the ‘Small Business Blog’ category of the 2011 MAD awards. This is hugely exciting for us, and means veryeversomuch a LOT. If you would like to help us win, you can see how here.)Read More
Tis true, I did.
Then I wavered.
And got one for Christmas.
I *LOVE* it.
But… tis a vay ugly thing in it’s dull grey boringness.
I made a little pouch for it to protect it from the contents of my handbag, but when I’m holding it and using it… dullness.
But now – would you just look at THESE?
Decals for the kindle. Loads and loads and LOADS of them.
Oh, there’s too many to show you – but there’s pages of the Kindle Decal Girl Skin on Amazon, all for a word under £18.Read More
Tots100 have joined forces with Tesco Books to launch a rather fably book club-exchange scheme. A blogger reviews a book they love, and then recommends another blogger who gets a copy sent to them! What a brilliant idea! We were asked to join in this month – so here’s my choice:
When I picked up this book at the library, I wasn’t sure what to expect, if I’m honest. I had seen good reviews, and I liked the cover (yes, we ALL judge books by their covers, you know it’s true) – and you never know whether that’s going to be a good risk or a bad risk do you?
This was the very BEST of all book risks.
I loved this book. I did not want to put it down – I even cooked a white sauce with one hand whilst reading this with the other.
It’s written by Death, about a 9yr old German girl and her foster family during WWII.
Well… actually, it’s a stunningly beautiful, stabbingly emotional, hauntingly uplifting read.
It’s a book with such depth to it – Death is a narrator of such fine craftsmanship I can’t tell you how often I have re-read some passages, just to enjoy his words. Cold, clear, precise – and yet containing boundless anger and horror and sadness. And unimaginable love and joy and fun. The surface story of Liesel and her books contains the deeper wider story that Death is telling.
The story is a simple one, of one misfit family of everyday Germans, in an ordinary street in Berlin, that could easily have been the East End of London; the characters are universally recognisable, alive and crisply in focus. And funny and warm and real.
Ultimately the book celebrates WORDS. Their power, the strength that can be taken from them, the times that can be shared through them, the memories and bonds that can be created by them.
It’s a book which stayed with me long after I (sadly, slowly) finished the last page, and one which I have returned to time and again – always finding something new within it.
Some info about the book club:
The Tots100 Book Club is where bloggers share their favourite stories. Every month, the Tots100 invites 10 bloggers to talk about stories that have moved and inspired them – and to share their favourite books with another blogger. Each month, they’ll be publishing a round-up of the Book Club’s recommendations over on the Tots100 site, meaning you need never be short of great reading inspiration again!Read More
The 8yr old LOVES the Tollins – and the new book is just as good as the first!
Conn Iggulden is a bit of a hero of our family. I stumbled across his Emperor books in the library and was transfixed. Then came the Big Book for Boys – instant love from No.1 son. Then, as if half the family were not enough for him to have collected, he writes these really quite brilliant books for younger bigger readers.
You know, the tricky 6-9 age where they’re clever enough to read chapter books, but are either bored or daunted by most of them?
And cleverly, it’s in essence a fairy book – but Tollins are NOT fairies. And they’re tough and exciting. Welcome in, boys-who-won’t-read-fairy-stories. Set in the 1920′s, there’s captures and escapes and flying, a le-ee-tle bit of romance, lots of bangs and fireworks and a horrible end for Wangle, courtesy of a Cat.
The books are a joy to read – witty and warm and exciting and fun to read aloud. And as they’re a collection of four short chapter books, they’re perfect for short bursts at bedtime.
You’ll love them. Honest.
You can get the first Tollins book here and the latest collection,Dynamite Tales, is available from Amazon for £9.69 here
Did you know there’s a new volume of seven Dr Seuss stories out? Brand shiny new ones you’ve not read before?
No, me either!
But you need to be quick – Waterstones is the only place I can find it in stock online (your local bookseller will be able to help though).
They’re older stories, previously printed in magazines and never before in a book, and they are beyond the One Fish, Two Fish stage.
I love them all, and I can’t possibly choose…
“It’s hard to decide,”
Said young Henry McBride.
“it’s terribly, terribly hard to decide.
When a fellow grows up and turns into a man,
A fellow should pick the best job that he can.
But there’s so many jobs that would be so much fun,
It’s terribly hard to decide on just one.”
It’s a wonderful hardback collection, I suggest any Dr Seuss fan (and lets face it, who isn’t?) should go rootle one out as soon as you possibly can.Read More
Well, whatever the attraction (Attraction! Geddit?! Oh, I make myself larf…), this book has it in spades. The Gruffalo’s Child – almost as beloved in this house as The Gruffalo itself – And a heap of magnets to play with, creating your own scenes in the book; having the owl tell the fox off, the bird peck at the snake…. oh, sorry, that’s just our bossy 4yr old, probably…
Now usually these magnet books are a monster price – but LOOK! Just over a fiver on Amazon! BARGAIN! And a tippety-TOP stocking filler…
The Gruffalo’s Child Magnetic Activity book on Amazon for £5.49
Oh this book is BRILLIANT!
I was sniggering just from a first flick through, before I got anywhere near bedtime stories and reading it aloud to the 4yr old.
Telling the Christmas story from the seriously sleep-deprived (and VERY grumpy) Inn Keeper, this book will be read again and again.
Unusually for a book telling this story, it is neither overly heavy or sanctimonious, nor is it irreverent with its Christmas message.
However, one word of warning – small children will frequently bellow “ROUND THE BACK!” at anyone who knocks on the door…
I’ve been on the hunt for AGES for a really good Atlas to engross the children.
And here it is.
Barefoot Books have really got something special with this one – every page is beautiful, and interesting, and totally absorbing. Enough facts, broken up with enough pictures – the 4yr old enjoys this as much as the 10yr old does.
And that’s no mean feat.
The history of map-making was absorbed minutely by the 8yr old, while the 10yr old loves the solar system part. The 4yr old simply loves looking at all the pictures, and is slowly learning the names of the countries, associating them with the correct people and wildlife.
This will make a great gift for any child this Christmas - available on Amazon for a penguin under £11