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Topic: Fire of London

Best children’s books about the Fire of London 

In 1666, a famous fire started in a London bakery and spread quickly to burn down large areas of the city. The fire was so impactful that it was called the Great Fire of London.

We’ve picked a selection of recommended children’s books about the Fire of London. From the flea’s-eye-view of the fire in Vlad and the Great Fire of London to the absolutely beautiful non-fiction illustrated compendium in the 350th Anniversary Guide to The Great Fire of London, this booklist will help you to get to grips with the key events of this popular history topic.

Look out for wooden houses, buried cheese, flame-hopping fleas and detailed diaries in our list of the best Fire of London topic books…

Chapter book

Toby has forgotten a delivery for Mr Pepys, but as he sets out across London he sees the sky is full of flames!

Hopscotch Histories are brand new stories in historical settings, told in under 400 words, perfect for children who are building up their reading confidence. Carefully controlled text interacts with stunning artwork to help develop visual literacy.

Non-fiction

The Great Fire of London destroyed the homes of almost 90 per cent of London’s population. Could it have been prevented?

From the outbreak of the fire at a bakery on Pudding lane, to fire fighting techniques and meddling Lord Mayors, The Great Fire Unclassified takes readers on a journey back in time to uncover the true story behind London’s most destructive ever fire.

Real-life artefacts and documentation enable readers to build a true and real account of the Great Fire and how it shaped Britain today.

Non-fiction

This book combines good quality artwork and contemporary illustrations with simple, well-written text. Young readers will discover how the fire started, what devastation it caused and will be able to compare fire-fighting in 1666 to the present day.

Photos of artefacts and original illustrations help bring the topic to life.

Chapter book

This exciting story brings the tale of the great fire of London to life for young readers.

When Will Farriner wakes to the sound of crackling flames and the smell of smoke, he knows something is terribly wrong! As his family escape the flames engulfing their bakery, Will realises he must stop the fire from spreading. But what can be done before all of London goes up in smoke?

Full of adventure and danger, this short text is suitable for struggling readers but engaging enough to give confident readers a quick, fun read.

Suitable for use in schools as guided reading texts or for reading independently.

Additional illustration by Andy Catling

Non-fiction

Samuel Pepys is famous for the diary he wrote 400 years ago. The diary tells us about lots of important events such as the Great Fire of London and the Great Plague.

Find out why people thought his diary was written in code, why Pepys was known as the ‘father of the modern navy’ and why he was arrested and sent to the Tower of London.

Part of a series of books for 9-11-year-olds. Other titles in the series include: Florence Nightingale, Guy Fawkes, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, Henry VIII, Mary Seacole and Queen Victoria.

Non-fiction

A simple, friendly first history series that takes a close look at some key events and personalities through history and reveals how and why they are still important to us today. Each book uses a rich variety of historical sources, from diaries to paintings, to bring events to life, while simple historical vocabulary is introduced and explained.

Non-fiction

In 1666, London’s citizens woke to see the skyline above their city’s cramped wooden houses ablaze. The Great Fire of London is a hauntingly beautiful visual re-telling of one of the most well-known disasters in the city’s history. To commemorate the 350th anniversary of the fire, powerful and sumptuous drawings from the new east London illustrator, James Weston Lewis, bring the events of November 1666 to life in this stunning gift book.

Lewis’s drawings take readers on a journey, from the single smouldering coal that falls out of the baker’s oven to the swirling clouds of ash that engulf the city and then in to the very heart of the fire itself. As the pages turn, you can witness London burning to the ground and then rebuilding again.

Children will love examining the rich detail of each spread, from the detailed city map to the drawings of London before, during and after the fire took hold. This book takes the dramatic historical information surrounding the Great Fire of London and transforms it into a breathtaking story that will transfix readers of all ages.

Picturebook

It’s 1666 and Vlad the flea and his friend Boxton the rat, love eating and biting their way around London. But one night in Pudding Lane they are caught up in a fire that threatens to destroy them, along with most of the City of London. Vlad and the Great Fire of London is a picture book that supports the Key Stage 1 history curriculum. Through Vlad’s story and full colour illustrations it shows how the fire is believed to have started, how it spread and what Londoners did to fight it and escape it. This illustrated story of the Great Fire of 1666 includes a fact file about the fire.

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