Current Book Club Reads, February 2023
While the Storm Rages, Phil Earle
It's 1939 and London is at war. Fathers are off to fight, children are being evacuated and amid all this turmoil, the latest government missive is advising that beloved pets be put down, to lessen the load.
This sits heavily with the impetuous, young Noah whose dog, Winn, is his world. His best friend Clem feels the same way about her aged daschund, Frank. Unable to carry through with the order, they run away to seek refuge for their pets in the estate of an eccentric old lady who they hear has a fondness for animals; only problem is they have to get to her.
So begins a journey on Noah's rusty boat. They'll be joined by a donkey, some cats, oh, and a snake owned by the local bully (with a sad backstory). Full of empathy, humour and adventure. This book has been a real hit with my Year 5 Book Club members.
Nevermoor, The Trials of Morrigan Crow, Jessica Townsend
Morrigan Crow, is a cursed child, destined to die at midnight on her 11th birthday. Just when her time is up, the rather glorious Jupiter North, her mysterious patron, rescues Morrigan from her fate and steals her away to the magical city of Nevermoor. There, Morrigan must compete in a series of trials for a place in the prestigious Wundrous Society and a chance at a new life. Bright, humorous, quirky writing and a fast and furious pace make this a fascinating read. The world-building is astonishing.
This is a Year 5 Book Club read.
The Chestnut Roaster, Eve McDonnell
A startlingly beautiful book. This stunning historical story is set in Paris in 1888 - the 'Belle Epoque' or 'beautiful era'. It tells the story of Piaf, a 12 year old girl who has the ability to remember everything that has ever happened to her. When she realises that everyone in Paris has forgotten the entire last year, including the disappearance of several gifted children she sets off on an adventure into the depths of Paris's underground twin, the Catacombs, to discover the whereabouts of the lost children and capture the villainous memory thief.
A book that asks children to let their imagination run wild. Connections are there to be found and to be made, but this is not a book that gives away its secrets easily.
Our current Year 6 Book Club read.