Review: Five Ways to Make a Friend


Book Title: Five Ways to Make a Friend (available here)

Author: Gillian Cross

Illustrator: Sarah Horne

Publisher: Barrington Stoke

Publication Date: January 2020

Most Suitable For: Years 2-4

Reviewed By: Jane Evans, Class Teacher

Gillian Cross, author of the popular Demon Headmaster series, packs humour and empathy into a story that has the capacity to teach or remind us all that friendships are often found when and where we least expect them.


Ella tries to hide her concerns from her Dad as he drops her off for her first day at a new school. Before the day is out, Ella’s fear of not making any friends appears to be coming true. Ella chances on a book that claims to offer her the solution - but will following its advice really be the answer to Ella’s problems?


Accessible for younger confident readers as a first chapter book, the chapters are short and sweet, the words paint a picture which is then amplified by the fun, quirky illustrations by Sarah Horne. The story itself seemed to naturally open up discussion, so would be a good choice as a quick class read. Printed on buff paper with a clear easy to follow font, the book has been published in a manner to make it more easily accessible to those children with dyslexia or scotopic sensitivity, and the colourful cover makes it one that children are naturally drawn to pick up.



Curriculum links: PSHE - bullying, changes, friendship, being true to yourself.


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You can order Five Ways to Make a Friend online or from your local bookshop or library.



Many thanks to the publisher for sending us a review copy of this book and to Review Panel member Jane for reviewing it.



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