YA Book Prize display

Yet another book which we have already featured as a Book of the Week… the hilarious and heart-warming Crongton Knights, by Alex Wheatle.

Living on the South Crongton council estate has its worries – and life for McKay has been even tougher since his mum died.

His dad has been working all hours to keep the bailiffs from their door.

His brother is always riding the streets at night, tempting trouble.

And now, having strayed off his turf on a ‘heroic’ (if misguided) mission to help out a girl, McKay finds himself facing a friend’s crazy ex-boyfriend, some power-tripping hood-rats and a notoriously violent gangster with a vendetta which hits too close to home.

Poor McKay. He never asked for trouble …But during one madcap night of adventure and danger, he will find out who his true friends are and what it means to stick with your family.


New Books in the Library

New in the Library this week, and on the YA Book Prize display is Orangeboy, by Patrice Lawrence.

Not cool enough, not clever enough, not street enough for anyone to notice me. I was the kid people looked straight through. Not any more. Not since MR ORANGE.

Sixteen-year-old Marlon has made his mum a promise – he’ll never follow his big brother, Andre, down the wrong path. So far, it’s been easy, but when a date ends in tragedy, Marlon finds himself hunted. They’re after the mysterious Mr Orange, and they’re going to use Marlon to get to him. Marlon’s out of choices – can he become the person he never wanted to be, to protect everyone he loves?

Orangeboy was also nominated for the Costa Book Awards, and reached the shortlist.


YA Book Prize display

Chasing the Stars by Malorie Blackman is an Othello inspired novel set in space.

Olivia and her twin brother, Aidan, are heading alone back to Earth following the virus that completely wiped out the rest of their crew, and their family.

Nathan is part of a community heading in the opposite direction. But on their journey Nathan’s ship is attacked and most of the community killed. Only a few survive.

Their lives unexpectedly collide. Nathan and Vee are instantly attracted to each other, deeply head over heels – like nothing they have ever experienced.

But not evereyone is pleased. And surrounded by rumours, deception – even murder – is it possible to live out a happy ever after…?


YA Book Prize display

The Graces by Laure Eve has been reviewed twice on this blog earlier in the year, both positively and negatively – read those reviews here and here. I enjoyed the twist at the end, and the little niggles of uncertainty when it all started to go horribly wrong…

Everyone said the Graces were witches. I was going to make them mine.

Just like everybody else in her small town, River is obsessed with the Graces.

And just like everybody else, she’s been seduced by their wealth, their exclusivity, their beauty and their glamour. Perhaps even their magic.

But unlike everybody else, River knows exactly what she’s doing.

Doesn’t she?

Read The Graces,  and see what you think.


New Books in the Library

New in the Library this week, and on the YA Book Prize display is one of the most emotional books I have read recently – Paper Butterflies by Lisa Heathfield.

Today, I’ll tell him. Today, I’ll tell him everything.

June’s life at home with her stepmother and stepsister is a dark one – and a secret one. Not even her dad knows the truth. She’s trapped like a butterfly in a jar.

Then June meets Blister, a boy in the woods. In him, she finds a glimmer of hope that perhaps she can find a way to fly far, far away.

But freedom comes at a price…

Read this book – it will break your heart.

YA Book Prize display


The Monstrous Child was a Book of the Week earlier in the year, and was also on the Costa Book Awards shortlist. I thought it was brilliantly disgusting, with a fabulous narrator.

Before you reject me, before you hate me, remember: I never asked to be Hel’s queen.

Meet Hel, teenager and Queen of the Dead. Daughter of a giantess and a god. Sister to Fenhir the wolf and Jormungand the snake. This is her testament.

Hel never wanted to be queen, but being a normal teenager wasn’t an option either. Now she’s stuck ruling the underworld. For eternity. She doesn’t want your pity. But she does demand you listen. It’s only fair you hear her side of the story…

It didn’t have to be like this.

This is a must-read book for anyone who loves mythology.


New Books in the Library

New in the Library this week, and on the YA Book Prize display is the chilling The Call by Peadar O’Guilin.

‘Your people drove them out of their homes. Thousands of years later they turn up again – and they’re gonna wipe you out.’


On her birthday, Nessa finds out the terrible truth about her homeland, Ireland – the truth that will change her life forever.


That she and her friends must train for the most dangerous three minutes of their lives: THE CALL.


That any day now, without warning, they will each wake in a terrifying land, alone and hunted, with a one in ten chance of returning alive.

If you look very carefully at the cover you will see that it is made up of rows and rows of little skulls…

New Books in the Library

New in the Library this week, and on the YA Book Prize display is How Not to Disappear by Clare Furniss.

Our memories are what make us who we are. Some are real. Some are made up. But without them we are nobody.

Hattie’s summer isn’t going as planned. Her two best friends have abandoned her: Reuben has run off to Europe to ‘find himself” and Kat is in Edinburgh with her new girlfriend. Meanwhile Hattie is stuck babysitting her twin siblings and dealing with endless drama around her mum’s wedding. Oh, and she’s also just discovered that she’s pregnant with Reuben’s baby…

Then Gloria, Hattie’s great-aunt who no one even knew existed, comes crashing into her life. Gloria’s fiercely independent, rather too fond of a gin sling and is in the early stages of dementia. Together the two of them set out on a road trip of self-discovery – Gloria to finally confront the secrets of her past before they are erased from her memory forever and Hattie to face the hard choices that will determine her future…

A Library of Lemons by Jo Cotterill – Book of the Week

I have chosen one of the new books for this week’s Book of the Week
 – a wonderful, warm story which I read over the Easter holidays. A Library of Lemons is all about the power of friendship and how important it is to look after one another.

Calypso usually keeps her head buried in a book – but when a new girl joins her class who also loves reading and writing, it sparks a close and special friendship. Mae’s home is busy, lively and noisy, just like her – and Calypso loves spending time there.

Since her mother died Calypso’s dad has grown distant, and keeps to himself. But when she discovers the sad secret hidden in her father’s library, she realises that something is very wrong.