Classroom Novels recommended for 10 yrs+
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Albert, Carrie and young Nick are war-time evacuees whose lives get so tangled up with the people they've come to live among that the war and their real families seem to belong to another world. Carrie and Nick are billeted in Wales with old Mr Evans, who is so mean and cold, and his timid mouse of a sister, Lou, who suddenly starts having secrets. Their friend Albert is luckier, living in Druid's Bottom with warm-hearted Hepzibah Green and the strange Mister Johnny, who can talk to animals but not to human beings. Carrie and Nick visit him there whenever they can for Hepzibah makes life exciting and enticing with her stories and delicious cooking. Gradually they begin to feel more at ease in their war-time home, but then, in trying to heal the rift between Mr Evans and his estranged sister, and save Druid's Bottom, Carrie does a terrible thing which is to haunt her for years to come. Carrie revisits Wales as an adult and tells the story to her own children.
Shaun, a young teenager arrives in Scotland from Northern Ireland, forced to leave there because of experiences in the current 'troubles'. It is to be a stay of six weeks with his cousins, during which time he learns something of the shared history of his new and former environments and of how that history 'seems one long battle': the overall effect of the visit is that he is sufficiently strengthened by it to return to Ulster and able to 'cope'
When Moose Flanagan and his family move home, yet again, and become residents of the famous prison island Alcatraz, things get interesting. First of all, they share the island with a few other families and a lot of pretty heavy-duty criminals including Al Capone. And secondly, Moose's sister is starting a new school, which everyone hopes will help her become more integrated with those around her. When Moose comes up with some pretty cunning money-making schemes based on his famous co-residents, he does not count on his sister becoming inadvertently involved. This is a charming, funny and utterly enchanting book that skilfully and delicately weaves a humorous tale with some important issues.
Liam is too big for his boots. And his football strip. And his school blazer. But being super-sized height-wise has its advantages: he's the only eleven-year-old to ever ride the G-force defying Cosmic rollercoaster -- or be offered the chance to drive a Porsche. Long-legged Liam makes a giant leap for boy-kind by competing with a group of adults for the chance to go into space. Is Liam the best boy for the job? Sometimes being big isn't all about being a grown-up.
Two bothers, Damian and Anthony, are unwittingly caught up in a train robbery during Britain's countdown to join the Euro. Suddenly finding themselves with a vast amount of cash, the boys have just one glorious, appalling dilemma -- how to spend it in the few days before it becomes worthless. Torn between the vices of buying a million pizzas and the virtues of ending world poverty, the boys soon discover that being rich is a mug's game. For not only is the clock ticking -- the bungling bank robbers are closing in. Pizzas or World Peace, what would you choose?
When Ted and Kat watched their cousin Salim get on board the London Eye, he turned and waved before getting on. After half an hour it landed and everyone trooped off - but no Salim. Where could he have gone? How on earth could he have disappeared into thin air? Since the police are having no luck finding him, Ted and Kat become sleuthing partners. Despite their prickly relationship, they overcome their differences to follow a trail of clues across London in a desperate bid to find their cousin. And ultimately it comes down to Ted, whose brain works in its own very unique way, to find the key to the mystery.
For three years and eight months, Felix has lived in a convent orphanage high in the mountains in Poland. But Felix is different from the other orphans. He is convinced his parents are still alive and will come back to get him. When a group of Nazi soldiers come and burn the nuns' books, Felix is terrified that his Jewish, bookseller parents will also be in danger. After escaping from the orphanage, Felix embarks on a long and dangerous journey through Nazi occupied Poland, befriending a little orphan girl called Zelda and a kindly dentist, Barney, who hides and cares for Jewish children. But when the Nazis discover them, Barney makes the ultimate sacrifice for the children.
'You must get away tonight,' the man had told him. David escapes from the concentration camp where he has spent his entire life and flees across Europe. He is utterly alone - who can he trust? What will await him? And all the while, how can he be sure that they won't catch up with him...This is the remarkable story of David's introduction to the world: sea, mountains and flowers, the colours of Italy, the taste of fruit, people laughing and smiling, all are new to David. David learns that his polite manner, his haunted eyes and his thin features are strange to other people. He must learn to fend for himself in this strange new world.
Darkus is miserable. His dad has disappeared, and now he is living next door to the most disgusting neighbours ever. A giant beetle called Baxter comes to his rescue. But can the two solve the mystery of his dad's disappearance, especially when links emerge to cruel Lucretia Cutter and her penchant for beetle jewellery? A coffee-mug mountain, home to a million insects, could provide the answer - if Darkus and Baxter are brave enough to find it.
In March 2000, Fumiko Ishioka, the curator of a small Holocaust education center in Tokyo, received an empty suitcase from the museum at Auschwitz. On the outside, in white paint, were the words ""Hana Brady, May 16, 1931, Orphan."" Fumiko and the children at the center were determined to find out who Hana was and what happened to her all those years ago, leading them to a startling and emotional discovery.
When Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy are sent to stay in the countryside, they can hardly imagine the extraordinary adventure that awaits them. It all begins when Lucy opens the wardrobe and finds herself standing in a snowy wood. She has discovered Narnia, a magical land of fauns and centaurs, nymphs and talking animals. But Narnia is under the enchantment of the evil White Witch and has become a land of eternal winter..
When Callum and his friends find Iona on Callum's farm they try to chase her back into the village. But Iona runs from them up into the hills. It is late and dark and snow lies in the mountain gullies. Worried for Iona's safety, Callum follows to find her shivering with cold but refusing to leave. She is guarding a secret hidden in the forest above the dark waters of the loch. So they make a deal. Iona shares the secret and in return Callum allows her back onto the farm. They form a deep bond of friendship and make a promise to keep their secret safe. It is a promise that will change Callum's world forever...She turned her head, and fixed me with her brilliant yellow eyes. She looked right into me. And suddenly I knew then, in that one moment, I was as much part of her world as she was of mine. Soar above the clouds in this enthralling tale of friendship, loyalty, and hope.
St Enda's is no ordinary school, and Padraic Pearse is no ordinary headmaster. His pupils are inspired by his vision of freedom and an Irish Republic, and John Joe and his friend Roger see the Easter Rising as their chance to fight for Ireland's freedom. But the two boys are horrified to learn that they are too young to take part. They disobey orders to stay away from the city centre and quickly become caught up in the dramatic events of the Rebellion. Called to be brave and resourceful beyond their years, they witness events that change their lives forever.
In the 16th century, Granuaile, the Pirate Queen, warrior and leader, was the terror of the North Atlantic and the most feared woman in Ireland. A story of immense bravery and daring, as Granuaile takes on the great Norman lords, smuggles weapons and mercenaries for the Ulster Gaelic O'Donnell and O'Neill clans and finally goes to confront Elizabeth Tudor herself. Some of the great figures of Irish history feature, including Red Hugh O'Donnell, Hugh O'Neill, Hugh Dubh O'Donnell, and Richard Bingham.
In Nazi-occupied Denmark, ten-year-old Annemarie Johansen is called upon for a selfless act of bravery to help save her best friend from a terrible fate. Winner of the Newbery Medal, newly reissued in the Essential Modern Classics range. "They plan to arrest all the Danish Jews. They plan to take them away. And we have been told that they may come tonight." It is 1943 and life in Copenhagen is becoming complicated for Annemarie. There are food shortages and curfews, and soldiers on every corner. But it is even worse for her Jewish best friend, Ellen, as the Nazis continue their brutal campaign. With Ellen's life in danger, Annemarie must summon all her courage to help stage a daring escape. Inspired by true events of the Second World War.
Young Willie Beech is evacuated to the country as Britain stands on the brink of the Second World War. A sad, deprived child, he slowly begins to flourish under the care of old Tom Oakley - but his new-found happiness is shattered by a summons from his mother back in London..
Heroism or cowardice? A stunning story of the First World War from a master storyteller. Told in the voice of a young soldier, the story follows 24 hours in his life at the front during WW1, and captures his memories as he looks back over his life. Full of stunningly researched detail and engrossing atmosphere, the book leads to a dramatic and moving conclusion. Both a love story and a deeply moving account of the horrors of the First World War.
In 1914, Joey, a beautiful bay-red foal with a distinctive cross on his nose, is sold to the army and thrust into the midst of the war on the Western Front. With his officer, he charges toward the enemy, witnessing the horror of the battles in France. But even in the desolation of the trenches, Joey's courage touches the soldiers around him and he is able to find warmth and hope. But his heart aches for Albert, the farmer's son he left behind. Will he ever see his true master again? Former Children's Laureate and award-winning author, Michael Morpurgo, has written nearly 100 books for children, many of them war stories. But none have become as famous as War Horse.
At the outbreak of World War one, Joey, young Albert's beloved horse, is sold to the cavalry and shipped to France. Caught up in enemy fire, fate takes Joey on an extraordinary odyssey, serving on both sides before finding himself alone in no man's land. But Albert cannot forget Joey and, still not old enough to enlist, he embarks on a treacherous mission to find him and bring him home. Nick Stafford's adaptation for the stage of the celebrated novel by Michael Morpurgo leads us on a gripping journey through history. War Horse premiered at the National Theatre, London, in October 2007.
This is the magical sequel to 'War Horse. Joey was the last working horse on the farm, and the apple of Grandpa's eye. In War Horse, Joey was sent away from the farm to be a warhorse in WWI. Grandpa had joined the cavalry in order to find, and fight, with Joey. Farm Boy brings us forward fifty years with Grandpa not only telling his grandson, Joey's story but also a 'shameful secret' which he has held for years...The story is set in Iddesleigh in Devon and lovingly evokes the bonds between farm and farmer; grandson and grandfather.
Inspiring new story of Robbie, a boy in a coma - victim of a car accident. Locked inside his own head, able to hear but not move or speak, Robbie tries to keep himself from slipping ever deeper into unconsciousness. Robbie, football fan and animal lover, runs after his dog Lucky one day when he chases a cat and is hit by a car. Unconscious, Robbie lies in hospital, unable to speak, move or eat. But he can hear; he is aware, even though his family and friends don't know this. Inside his head, we hear Robbie's thoughts; on his Mum and sister, why his parents are separated. His friends and family try desperately to reach him - even Zola, his favourite Chelsea footballer, comes to see him. And still Robbie can't 'wake up'. Until one day, against hospital rules, Dad brings Lucky into the hospital. Can Lucky bring Robbie back to life?
This is an exciting adventure and friendship story by a much-loved, award winning author. Gracie and her friend, Daniel have always been warned to stay away from the Birdman and his side of the island. But then, they find a message in the sand and discover the Birdman is not who they thought. They build up a lovely friendship with him, but when the children get stranded on Samson Island they don't know whether to believe the birdman's story that the island is cursed. Set on a remote island against the backdrop of World War I, this story will captivate and delight young readers.
An epic journey through famine - Sean and Annie have one chance to escape the potato famine and plague in Ireland. They survive a shipwreck and land safely in America searching for their father. But their new land is one of hardship and they live in poverty on the streets of Boston. However, their adventure is just beginning ...they live on a steamboat and then join pioneers travelling across the prairies. Their music and dancing bring joy to all they meet, but their family torc brings both blessings and curses and thieves prowl to get hold of it. Annie and Sean must hang on to their torc - their family's survival depends on it.
'My name is August. I won't describe what I look like. Whatever you're thinking, it's probably worse.' Auggie wants to be an ordinary ten-year-old. He does ordinary things - eating ice cream, playing on his Xbox. He feels ordinary - inside. But ordinary kids don't make other ordinary kids run away screaming in playgrounds. Ordinary kids aren't stared at wherever they go. Born with a terrible facial abnormality, Auggie has been home-schooled by his parents his whole life. Now, for the first time, he's being sent to a real school - and he's dreading it. All he wants is to be accepted - but can he convince his new classmates that he's just like them, underneath it all? Wonder is a funny, frank, astonishingly moving debut to read in one sitting, pass on to others, and remember long after the final page.
When Tom hears the grandfather clock strike thirteen he is not prepared for what is going to happen. Outside the back door is a garden, which everyone tells him doesn't exist. But the magical place in which Tom finds himself is certainly a garden - his midnight garden.
Jesse Aarons trained all summer to become the fastest runner in school, so he's very upset when newcomer Leslie Burke outruns him and everyone else. Despite this and other differences, including that she's rich, he's poor, and she's a city girl, he's a country boy, the two become fast friends. Together, they create Terabithia, which they reach by swinging over a creek on a rope, a land of monsters, trolls, ogres, and giants and rule as king and queen. This friendship helps Jess cope with the tragedy that makes him realize what Leslie taught him.
What do a worried prime minister, a chicken dropped from a skyscraper window, a bully called Fox and an alien invasion have in common? All are ingredients in Jamie Rix's riotous new stand-alone novel for the 9-12 age group. Alfie Pluck is the unluckiest boy alive - until he unwittingly eats the chicken which contains the highly-sought-after luck gene. Once his secret is exposed, no end of people want the gene for their own devious deeds and crackpot schemes. And Alfie is on the run. But there's more than one kind of luck, and Alfie's escape from his pursuers is an hilarious roller coaster of good fortune and bad.
Stanley Yelnat's family has a history of bad luck going back generations, so he is not too surprised when a miscarriage of justice sends him to Camp Green Lake Juvenile Detention Centre. Nor is he very surprised when he is told that his daily labour at the camp is to dig a hole, five foot wide by five foot deep, and report anything that he finds in that hole. The warden claims that it is character building, but this is a lie and Stanley must dig up the truth. In this wonderfully inventive, compelling novel that is both serious and funny, Louis Sachar has created a masterpiece that will leave all readers amazed and delighted by the author's narrative flair and brilliantly handled plot.
"Give me a dollar or I'll spit on you." That's Bradley Chalker for you. He is the oldest child in the class. He tells enormous lies. He picks fights with girls, and the teachers say he has "serious behaviour problems." No one likes him - except Carla, the new school counsellor. She thinks Bradley is sensitive and generous, and she even enjoys his far-fetched stories. Carla knows that Bradley could change, if only he weren't afraid to try. Sometimes the hardest thing in the world is believing in yourself.
'Why did the guy eat two dead skunks for breakfast?' 'Because dead ones squeal when you stick the fork in.' Gary W. Boone knows he was born to be a stand-up comedian. It is the rest of the kids in the class who think he is a fool. Then the Floyd Hicks Junior High School Talent Show is announced, and he starts practising his routine non-stop to get it just right. Gary's sure that this will be his big break - he'll make everyone laugh and will win the $100 prize money. But when an outrageous surprise threatens to turn his debut into a disaster, it looks as if the biggest joke of all may be on Gary himself.
A web of secrets can risk lives! When Hetty's family move to Martin Street near Portobello bridge in Dublin, they're not sure of their welcome. And next door, Ben's family are not sure about their new Jewish neighbours: it's The Emergency and they are suspicious of strangers. But for Ben, the chance to earn a few pence is too great and secretly he does odd jobs for them. And there's a bigger secret: Renata, a World War Two refugee, is on the run in the city. Hetty is determined to rescue her. The web of secrets begins to unravel and there are lives at risk. Can Hetty and Ben overcome their differences and save Renata, or are they just meddling in things they know too little about?
It's April 1940 and German troops are pouring onto the streets of Denmark. 12-year-old Bamse is ordered by his father to keep his head down and stay out of trouble. But Bamse and his daring friend Anton can't resist playing the occasional practical joke on the invading soldiers. When it becomes clear that the trouble isn't just going to pass them by, the people of Denmark decide to take action and Bamse and his eccentric family are about to take part in one of history's most dramatic rescues - smuggling Denmark's Jewish population, across the water to Sweden, and safety. Many of the characters are based on Sandi's own family, including her father, Bamse, and the book was inspired by the stories he told to her.
My dad died twice. Once when he was thirty nine and again four years later when he was twelve. On Al Chaudhury's twelfth birthday his beloved Grandpa Byron gives him a letter from Al's late father. In it Al receives a mission: travel back to 1984 in a secret time machine and save his father's life. Al soon discovers that time travel requires daring and imagination. It also requires lies, theft, setting his school on fire and ignoring philosophical advice from Grandpa Byron. All without losing his pet hamster, Alan Shearer! Time Travelling With a Hamster is a funny, heart-warming race-against-time - and across generations - adventure that you will won't be able to put down.
The year is 2425. Centuries after a catastrophic meteor collision, nature has retaken the earth. In a small town in what was once England, young Ocean Mooney and the monkey-owning Duke Smiff have just dug up a 400 year-old tablet computer. Meanwhile, in the present day, Thomas Reeve and his genius cousin Kylie create the Time Tablet - a device which they hope will allow them to communicate with the future. But when the Time Tablet malfunctions live on television, Thomas and Kylie are sucked into the year 2425 - and have only 24 hours to return home, and save the future of humanity. A hilarious, moving and adventure-packed novel!