One of my favourite things about stories is that they can transport you to another world, if only for a bit. With that in mind I’ve chosen a brilliant selection of new children’s books to transport young readers away from the tedium of lockdown and into the lives of some fantastic characters; from little bears and magpies to orphaned detectives, from the Great Barrier Reef to dreams and the story of Charles Darwin.
Do keep an eye on twitter for a chance to win copies of some of the books featured.
The Adventures of Lowly Worm & Best Busy Year Ever by Richard Scarry (Faber Children’s)
Join Lowly Worm and Huckle on their adventures with their friends in Busytown in these beautifully relaunched, bestselling books. I adored these Richard Scarry books when I was little and it’s been lovely watching my boys enjoy discovering these stories too.
Too Much Stuff! By Emily Gravett (Two Hoots)
Two magpies, Meg and Ash, are busy getting their nest ready for their chicks. They want to make sure they have everything they could possibly need, but when their nest starts to overflow with all of the stuff, disaster strikes! A beautifully illustrated, wry story about wanting more than we need.
Can Bears Ski? By Raymond Antrobus and Polly Dunbar (Walker Books)
Little Bear doesn’t always answer when his friends talk to him. He doesn’t understand why his Dad keeps asking him, ‘can bears ski?’ either. But as the story unfolds, Little Bear and the reader gradually understand that what his Dad is actually asking is, ‘Can you hear me?’ This is a really powerful tale about hearing loss written and illustrated by an author and illustrator who both wear hearing aids themselves.
The Secret Detectives by Ella Risbridger (Nosy Crow)
When orphaned Isobel Petty witnesses someone being thrown overboard from the S.S. Marianna in the middle of the night, no one believes her. But with the help of two reluctant friends, she’s determined to find out the truth before they reach England. This is a gripping historical mystery for readers of 8+.
Uma And The Answer To Absolutely Everything by Sam Copeland, illustrated by Sarah Horne (Puffin Books)
Uma is full of questions, but since her Mum died, she’s been short on answers. That is until she discovers an all knowing Artificial Intelligence called Athena. She’s determined to use it to help her family, but as she embarks on a hilarious adventure to do just that, she gradually learns that not all questions have answers. This laugh-out-loud story is by the bestselling author of Charlie Changes Into A Chicken.
When We Got Lost In Dreamland by Ross Welford (HarperCollins)
When 11 year old Malky and his younger brother Seb become the owners of a ‘Dreaminator’, they discover worlds beyond their wildest dreams. But when Seb gets stuck in a dream and won’t wake up, Malky risks everything to try and save him.
Non-Fiction & Activity Books
Little People, Big Dreams: Charles Darwin written by Maria Isabel Sanchez Vegara, illustrated by Mark Hoffmann (Frances Lincoln)
The latest title in this fantastic series tells the inspiring story of Charles Darwin, a boy who was fascinated by nature and grew up to change the world of science forever. I love reading these books with my boys, they are a fantastic introduction to incredible people from all around the world.
The Great Barrier Reef by Helen Scales and Lisk Feng (Flying Eye Books)
This beautifully illustrated book is full of everything you could ever want to know about the Great Barrier Reef. From its history to the plants and animals that lives there and the dangers it now faces from pollution. This is a fascinating guide to a unique World Heritage Site.
LEGO Happy To Help! & Fun To Colour (Buster Books)
Based on the Lego City Adventure series on TV, Happy To Help! comes with a Lego model of Harl Hubbs and is packed with stories, puzzles and games to keep fans busy. The Fun To Colour book is full of pages for Lego fans to colour in.
A mum of two, Naomi Jones spent eight years working for Children’s Publishers in London and is now a children’s author and freelance editor. Her debut picture book, The Perfect Fit, will publish in March 2021.