Our Festive Countdown Returns!

Way back in 2013, when The Book Trolley was all very new, we introduced our (now) annual tradition of counting down the four weeks to Christmas. For the first year, we had our advent book wreath, followed in 2014 and 2015 by our advent book doors. For this year’s festive season, however, we’ve had a slight redesign which you can see below- it’s very stylish, don’t you think?

As we make our way closer to the holiday season, we’ll be sharing four different books; a few are old, some will be new, others are our best-of picks from this year or maybe they’re just ones we love and want an excuse to share. Hopefully by the end, our sixteen recommendations will have inspired you to pop to your local library to pick them up (or to even visit a bookshop if you’re feeling flush!)

Most of the books we’ll be sharing are available to borrow from us here at our ELS base, so if you’re intrigued and want to see what else we have, we always welcome visitors!


  • Bus Stop Baby by Fleur Hitchcock

For mature KS2 and KS3 readers, this would appeal to avid Jacqueline Wilson fans. As well as dealing with the delicate issue of teenage pregnancy, a major theme is of a young person discovering that her strong views may not always be right: that there are usually several sides to a question. This aspect of the book is much more convincing and engaging than the abandoned baby plot, and the ‘heroine’ an authentic and appealing young person, ready – eventually – to learn from her mistakes. (Templar Publishing, £5.99 paperback, ISBN 9781471403507, find it at a Norfolk Library)

  • Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk

This is so sad- we warn you to read with tissues to hand! More for KS3 than KS2, it is a story about being different, and how intolerance and wilful misunderstanding can lead to tragedy. A new girl in the community is a bully (but it is never clear why she behaves in this way, which is a shame), and commits some very serious actions which ultimately lead to two deaths. (Random House, £6.99 paperback, ISBN 9780552574297)

  • Beck by Mal Peet and Meg Rosoff

This young adult novel is an original and fascinating read, as one would expect from Mal Peet. He died before being able to finish it, but had already asked his friend and fellow author Meg Rosoff to complete it, and the result is a compelling, horrifying but ultimately hopeful story. The first part of the novel is particularly brutal and there are graphic details- definitely one for top of high schools. (Walker Books, £12.99 hardback, ISBN 9781406331127, find it at a Norfolk Library)

  • The Many Worlds of Albie Bright by Christopher Edge

Albie’s mum and dad are both world class scientists, (Brian Cox comes readily to mind!) Dad knows all about Quantum Theory and mum worked on the large hadron collider at CERN. But when mum dies of cancer dad no longer has all the answers and becomes more and more remote. Desperate to try and get his mum back, Albie embarks on a series of perilous time travel experiments using Quantum Theory, equipped with his mum’s old CERN laptop, a box, a Geiger counter and a rotting banana! This is a book for your thoughtful sciencey Y5&6’s, but some sensitive readers may find it upsetting. (Nosy Crow, £6.99 paperback, ISBN 9780857636041)

This year’s book advent was designed for us by our friend Liam Drane- thank you for your festive help, Liam!

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