Recommended children's booklists sorted by age or topic

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Topic: Summer Reads

Looking for some good children’s books to get stuck into during the summer holidays? We’ve put together a list of some of our favourite new children’s books out this summer, listed by age group. Our summer selection includes stories of adventurous getaways, creatures of the deep, treasure quests, seashore escapades and plenty of exploration of the great outdoors. For more recommendations by age, check out our Reading for Pleasure hub or our Year Group booklists.

If you are looking for our Summer Reading Bingo activity, you can find it here.

Download Printable Summer Reads Poster (PDF)

 

Chapter book

A comedy of errors starring the instantly-loveable Rex – the first book in a fantastically funny series for 7+ readers, from Lollies Prize winning author-illustrator Elys Dolan.

Rex is king of the dinosaurs: carnivores want to be him and herbivores want to be eaten by him… That is, until a pesky Ice Age comes along and he winds up frozen solid in a glacier. When he wakes up, 65 million years later, human beings rule the roost – and if they get their hands on Rex, he’ll wind up in a zoo. (Or, worse: a MUSEUM.)

Lucky for him, Rex isn’t the only undercover creature in town. He’s whisked out of danger by the one and only Bigfoot, who has been surviving among the humans undetected for years. Bigfoot and his friends show Rex how to get by in the humans’ world, and soon there’s only one thing left for him to do: GET A JOB.

But that’s easier said than done … and with a meddling nine-year-old neighbour to deal with, and the constant risk of discovery, life couldn’t be harder for a dinosaur in disguise.

Non-fiction

Head to the depths of the ocean to study humpback whales in this beautiful non-fiction field guide for kids. You may know that humpback whales use whale song to communicate with each other, but there’s so much more to discover about these giants of the sea! In this book, acclaimed marine biologist Dr Asha de Vos explains how humpback use special bubble nets to catch fish, and the important role their poo plays in the ocean ecosystem.

Filled with simple science and plenty of animal facts, this book also explains how hunting made humpback whales an endangered species – and how conservation efforts have seen their numbers increase again.

Welcome to the Have A Great Spray waterpark! There’s slides, rides and fried ice cream, but that’s not the real attraction . . . Meet Flamingo, Cactus, Donut and Watermelon – four inflatable pool floats who live in an almost-forgotten pool next to the Lost-and-Found office. They may have been left behind by their original owners, but that hasn’t stopped them becoming firm (well actually quite squashy) friends. And of course there’s Lynn too, the traditional blue Lilo who has been floating around since the park opened. She’s been there, done that and got the puncture.

But things don’t always go to plan when you’re filled with air and live in a park packed with pointy things. From Walter S. Lide – the ruthless park owner – to Claws and Paws, the park’s stray cats, everyone is out to burst their bubble. With each day bringing a fresh wave of drama, life with the inflatables is always guaranteed to BLOW UP!

Featuring TWO stories: Bad Air Day and Mission Un-poppable.

A funny, sunny, splash-tastic new series for readers 6+, featuring a gang of loveable pool floats! Perfect for fans of The Bad Guys, Bad Kitty, Spongebob and Toy Story.

Chapter book

Welcome to the Shop of Impossible Ice Creams! Step inside to discover a delicious world of magical adventure, from bestselling author Shane Hegarty. First in a comic, heart-warming illustrated series, for 7+ fans of The Nothing to See Here Hotel and Charlie Changes into a Chicken .

Limpet’s mum is opening an ice-cream shop, full of her favourite new flavours: mushroom and tuna ice cream, anyone? Roast parsnip and gravy?

Limpet’s not sure about this. He likes a nice, safe life. His favourite ice-cream flavour is vanilla.

But when wicked Mr Fluffy arrives with his Mega Emporium of Amazing and Spectacular Ice Creams, Limpet knows he’s got to fight back. And there are magic ingredients on his doorstep which can solve all his worries, if only he can get the recipe just right …

Illustrated throughout with fabulous black and white illustrations by Jeff Crowther and written by the bestselling author of Boot , this story will make you fall in love with reading.

Chapter book

Secrets. Lies. Promises. Sometimes keeping things inside is dangerous.

Callie, Ted, Zara, and Nico are best friends. More than friends – they’re like family to each other. But since being embarrassed at school in a practical joke gone wrong, Ted has stopped talking to the rest of the gang.

And when Callie, Zara and Nico discover that someone has been living in their school, and sleeping in the building at night, they decide to investigate – without Ted.

A wise, heartwarming story of friendship and family, from the highly-acclaimed author of Ella on the Outside, Not My Fault, and How to be Me.

Chapter book

Black Panther meets Percy Jackson in this action-packed and empowering middle-grade superhero series about a British-Nigerian girl who learns that her Afro hair has psychokinetic powers. Soon to be a feature film with a major streamer!

I close my eyes, trying to push the power bubbling in me back down . . . Hairbands snap as my hair shoots out like superfine arrows, tearing through everything in its path.

Onyeka has a lot of hair – the kind that makes strangers stop in the street. She’s always felt insecure about her vibrant curls, until she makes an important discovery: she can control her hair with her mind!

Her mother quickly whisks her off to the Academy of the Sun, a school in Nigeria where Solari – children with superpowers – are trained. But Onyeka and her new friends at the Academy soon have to put their powers to the test as they find themselves caught up in an epic battle . . . one that puts the future of all Solari at risk.

Chapter book

In 1946, Rosa Sweetman, a young Kindertransport girl, is longing for her family to claim her. The war in Europe is over and she is the only child left at Westwood, a rambling country estate in the north of England, where she’d taken refuge seven years earlier.

The arrival of a friend of the family, Yara Fielding, starts an adventure that will take Rosa deep into the lush beauty of the Amazon rainforest in search of jaguars, ancient giant sloths and somewhere to belong. What she finds is Yara’s lively, welcoming family on the banks of the river and, together, they face a danger greater than she could ever have imagined.

Featuring places and characters known and loved by fans of Journey to the River Sea (including, among others, Maia, Finn, Miss Minton and Clovis) this spectacular new chapter in the story tells of the next generation and the growing threats to the Amazon rainforest that continue to this day.

Chapter book

A brilliantly funny story of what happens when a galactic princess moves in next door and almost brings about the end of the world. Exciting new fiction from the bestselling, award-winning author of My Brother is a Superhero.

Gavin’s got a new neighbour and she’s really annoying. Niki follows him everywhere, bosses him about, and doesn’t care that her parents will obliterate Earth with their galactic warships if she doesn’t stop running away from them. Can Niki and Gavin sort out the alien despots (aka Mum and Dad) and save the planet? Possibly. Will they become friends along the way? Doubtful…

Chapter book

Brought up by a wonderful group of animals on a hidden island somewhere deep in the Caribbean, Jim knows no other life or who his real parents are. He washed up on the island as a baby in a barrel of rum and treasure, and has been helping run its special lighthouse with the animals ever since. But now, trouble is brewing…

Someone, or something, has stolen the lighthouse bulb filaments. If Jim, Oscar and the rest of the animals can’t get the lighthouse beams working again, the hidden island will no longer be a secret. And with a pirate ship on the horizon, danger is about to smash their tranquil island apart…

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