“So please, oh PLEASE, we beg, we pray, go throw your TV set away, and in its place, you can install, a lovely bookshelf on the wall.”
— Roald Dahl, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
In a world filled with TV programs, video games and movies, books are more important than ever to help children develop their personalities. Reading encourages creativity, growth, and empathy. And apart from the obvious development of vocabulary and thinking skills, books provide the best stimulation for a child’s imagination. Our wonderful contributors for this issue are not suggesting you throw away your tv sets. Instead, these young minds have put together their favourite recommendations so that their peers may be inspired to read.
So kids, pick up a book and enjoy the fascinating journey it takes you on!
12 years old, (year 8)
By: Sarah Crossan
This happens to be one of my favourite books because of the strong plot that the book holds. It is a dystopian novel with different genre mixes of action, mystery, love, and friendship. This book is a story about a community that has been built within a pod that holds all that survived when the air plummeted on earth. The pod is the only place where you can roam freely without an air tank. Once you are outside the pod into the abandoned, tree bared world no one can survive without an air tank. But inside the pod lurks a girl who is part of a force, enemies to the Pod council but the true heroes in the end.
This book portrays the friendship and love between three people who are willing to find a way to breathe in the outside world and fight against whatever comes in their path, slowly finding out the truth about the lie they have been living. If you read this book and find it interesting, be sure to check out the second book of the sequel, Resist a continuum of their fight.
11 years old (Year 6)
By: Roald Dahl
This book is about a big friendly giant who kidnaps Sophie an eight-year-old girl because he is seen by her. The BFG was the smallest of all giants, and he collects and gives dreams. The bigger giants eat little children! The BFG and Sophie had a great time since she was an orphan and hated living in an orphanage. In the end, she went to Buckingham palace to warn the people of what was happening so she could trap the big giants. My favourite part of the book was when the British army went to go capture the big giants. I would recommend this book to everyone because it is about teamwork and it is kid-friendly.
14 years old (year 10)
By: Yu Hua
In the book “To Live”, the author Yu Hua reveals the journey one must go through to find invisible wealth and enlightenment. The author uses several Buddhist and Taoist morals to represent the journey. “To Live” is the story of a man named Xu Fugui, who begins his journey as a rich landowner in China. When he was young he spent his time gambling and ended up losing all of his family’s land. As a result he experienced countless losses and hardships throughout his life. Over the course of his journey, Fugui learns that he must give up materialistic value in order to find his larger self. This journey of self-reflection is full of twists and turns but in the end, teaches several valuable life lessons to the reader. I highly recommend this book to teens and young adults.
10 years old (year 7)
BOOK: Scarlet and Ivy, The lost twin
By: Sophie Cleverly
This is a spine-tingling story with mysteries, surprises, and parts that make you jump, a story about a long lost twin that is waiting to be found, a terrifying headteacher and a secret diary. Once you start reading this book you can’t stop. I loved it when the girls were stuck and lost but then found out ways to solve mysteries and never gave up even though sometimes they let their emotions get the best of them. My favourite character was Ivy because she fights through and doesn’t give up. You must read this book.
13 years old (Year 9)
By: Louis Sachar
I loved “Holes” because it was an action packed book with many characters with different personalities. I also really liked the mysteries in the book as it made it a whole lot better. This book is one where once you start reading it you cannot stop. It kept me on my toes the whole time. I also loved the different obstacles the boys faced and the way they hustled through to overcome them.
Even though they were accused of something they didn’t do they didn’t complain and they fought through. It was a really big lesson for me to learn. My favourite character was Hector Zeroni because he was the small boy that got bullied but he and Stanley fought through and in the end they made it! This is a book that must be read.
11 years old (year 7)
By: Raina Telgemeier
I love all of Raina Telgemeier’s books, but I especially enjoyed her newest one called “Guts”. I really loved it because I could relate to every sentence I read. I love all of her graphic novels but I finished this one in half an hour. I just couldn’t stop reading it even though I was supposed to go to sleep because I had school the next day. I did not sleep until I finished reading it. It was kind of my life in graphic form.
“Guts” is about dealing with anxiety and dealing with your issues. The main girl, called Raina, gets a stomach ache every time she is stressed or unhappy and the same thing happens to me too but I am learning to deal with it just like Raina does.
12 years old, (year 8)
Book: When you reach me
By: Rebecca Stead
This book is about the protagonist Miranda and her best friend Sal. One day someone punches Sal, and for some reason, Sal starts avoiding Miranda without any explanation. She also starts getting creepy and mysterious notes that she finds hidden in her belongings. I love this book because it is such an amazing story and teaches so many life lessons. It has an interesting, shocking, yet sad ending. This book is a great read for any age. I absolutely recommend it.