Reading Matters – News from the world of children’s books

Hello everyone and welcome to another Reading Matters and the opportunity to catch up with news from the world of children’s books and school libraries that you may have missed during a busy week. For all those who work in schools a very happy half term holiday to you!

What I’m reading…


This week I finished reading Little Bird Lands by Karen McCombie and you can read my review here. Spoiler…I loved it! Out now and perfect for lovers of children’s historical fiction.

This week I have also been reading the latest issue of Literacy, the journal published by The United Kingdom Literacy Association. So many fascinating and informative articles but one about school libraries is open access online: School libraries fostering children’s literacy and literature learning: mitigating the barriers  and I would highly recommend reading this as it draws attention to many issues faced by school librarians.

News and views from the world of children’s books…

The Non-Negotiable Role of School Librarians– article from the National Association of School Principals on collaboration between teachers and school librarians and how to ‘unlock the power of your library to drive a culture of deep learning in your school’.

21 Essential LGBTQ+ Kids & YA Books To Share in 2020 – to mark LGBT History Month in February Charlie Morris, Senior Publicist for Little Tiger Press and Stripes Publishing, has selected a range books for children, teens and young adults for the Toppsta website.

The School Library is a Litmus Paper – the latest blog on the Great School Libraries website written by former  Ofsted inspector, Larraine Harrison. It explains why school libraries are so important.

Picture Books for Children Reviews – Imogen Carter, for the Guardian, reviews a selection of picture books with a wide appeal covering nature, humour, acceptance and history.

The Imagine Children’s Festival – this annual festival is on now at the South Bank Centre and is dedicated to families experiencing and enjoying all kinds of art and culture together. Many popular children’s authors are featured. A wonderful half term treat!

The Importance of Diversity in School Libraries – “Diversity in school libraries isn’t about the numbers, it’s about the impact it has on the lives of the students who use them.” says former School Librarian of the Year, Lucas Maxwell, in his article for Book Riot.

Books to Engage Children With Environmental Issues – A range of titles on topical issues to prompt discussion or to use in the primary school classroom chosen by Jo @librarygirlandbookboy for the Copyright Licensing Agency website.

Topic Reading Lists – Helpful booklists on a variety of topics including Celebrating Difference, Emotional Well-being, Graphic Novels and many more are free to download from the Children’s Books Ireland website.

Longlist Announced for the Klaus Flugge Prize – Twenty debut picture books are in the running for this illustration prize that highlights the most talented newcomers. Previous winners include My Name is Not Refugee by Kate Milner and Julian is a Mermaid by Jessica Love.

CLPE Wins the Eleanor Farjeon Award 2019– The Centre for Literacy in Primary Education had been awarded the prestigious Eleanor Farjeon Award.  The prize, administered by the Children’s Book Circle, is given annually to acknowledge those individuals or institutions whose work and commitment to the world of children’s books has been deemed to be outstanding.

UK BAME Authors and Illustrators – School Librarian Matt Imrie has compiled and updated his lists of BAME authors for children, teens and young adults, illustrators, poets and publishers on the helpful Teen Librarian website.

Finally, some book reviews that caught my eye this week…

Flights of Fancy–  Stories, pictures and inspiration from ten Children’s Laureates. This anthology is now available in paperback. ‘If you want to inspire children to let their imaginations soar, then you really, really must have a copy of this cracker of a book in your home or classroom’ says Jill Bennett in her review.

First Chapter Books from Stripe Publishing – reviewed by Jo @librarygirlandbookboy who says they are ‘an excellent choice for anyone aged 5+ who still loves the vibrant, full-page illustrations of picture books but want a little more text to go with them.’ They sound wonderful and perfect for emerging and newly confident readers.

Demelza and the Spectre Detectors by Holly Rivers – “an excellent debut, tackling some heavy subject matter with heart, humour and care.” says Alex Mitchell in this tempting review for The Bookbag @TheBookbag

That’s it for this week. I hope you’ve found something of interest and maybe an idea for a book to read. Have a lovely week and happy reading!

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4 Responses to Reading Matters – News from the world of children’s books

  1. Lilyfae says:

    As ever thank you for this magnificent round up!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you so much for posting the link to the article from Literacy, this os so useful for my job and for my forthcoming course assignment. 😃

    Liked by 1 person

  3. alibrarylady says:

    Perfect timing! Good luck with the assignment. There are a lot of references within it that may helpful too.


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