News & Reviews

With half-term looming and a spattering of vaguely good weather, we’re creeping ever closer to summer- what a scary thought! There’s still lots going on though; we still have places on some of our INSET courses taking place this term, plus there is now only a month left to read all of the books shortlisted for the 2015 Carnegie Medal and Kate Greenaway Prize.

As a reminder, the shortlist can be found here and we also recommend having a look at the shadowing site on which schools and reading groups across the country have been sharing what they think of the nominated books. We’ll be hosting a special event on the day the winner will be announced (22nd June!) and we look forward to sharing what the pupils discussed at our meeting. You can find a round-up of our 2014 shadowing morning here.

What else? Well, we really enjoyed reading this post about Reading for Pleasure and technology in the classroom by local teacher Jon Biddle. On the topic of social media, we’ll be delivering another INSET course on Blogging and Social Media in the autumn term and Jon will be assisting us- stay tuned for details!

Also on the digital front, Norfolk Library and Information Service have recently launched their e-magazine service. If you have a library card, you can log-in and choose from a plethora of magazines on a range of topics- why not have a browse?

Phew! What about some book reviews? Two of our Librarians have found time to catch up with some recent reads and have provided us with a few reviews this Friday:


BrockThe Brockenspectre by Linda Newbery (£12.99 hardback, Cape, ISBN 9780857551566)

Tomas lives in the mountains with his mum and mountain guide dad. He shares his father’s love and respect for the hills, and when his dad disappears he is compelled to search for him despite his fear of the mythical Brockenspectre, that lies in wait for unwary climbers in the heights. He doesn’t find his father, but instead a grandmother he never knew about. An engaging read for Y4,5 & 6.

jadeThe Jade Boy by Cate Cain (£6.99, Templar Publishing, 9781848772298)

Definitely a creepy read for able Y6 readers this one! An appealing threesome of main characters and a very scary evil villain, as well as a house which comes alive all set at the time of the Great Fire of London. The evil Count Cazalon is desperate to become a God and will stop at nothing. There is witchcraft and racism (–in context) too.


colour thiefThe Colour Thief by Andrew Fusek Peters and Polly Peters, illustrated by Karin Littlewood (£6.99, Wayland, ISBN 9780750280532)

Potentially most useful where a situation is know to have arisen, this is a poignant but ultimately hopeful picture book about depression, and how a whole family is affected by the suffering of an adult.  The pictures vividly reflect the moods described, and may indeed help a young child understand clearer than do mere words.

Street ChildrenStreet Children; Real Stories from Across the World by Anthony Robinson (£12.99 hardback, Frances Lincoln, ISBN 9781847804341)

This is such a sad book of stories about children who live on the streets of Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Guatemala – but the author tells us that children live on the streets all over the world.  All the children are brave and optimistic, despite their struggles and terrible past histories.  The book acknowledges the charities which try to help these children, and provides their websites for schools to follow up.


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