Brilliant Books

Aren’t books magical? Freeing minds from worries and taking us somewhere new and inviting.

Below is a selection of books to soothe and fire up your child’s imagination for this festive month!

You could even pop out to your local independent book store and see what stock catches your eye. Wimbledon Books in Wimbledon Village is a real gem with books to suit the most whimsical of tastes.

Best For Laughs!

During my time as a classroom teacher, I’ll never forget Joke Friday! About 10 minutes before morning break or home-time, the children would jostle to share a joke with the class. There’d be giggles, looks of confusion and general mayhem, but boy did they love it!

The Big Book of Laugh-out-Jokes for Kids by Rob Elliot

  • In a nutshell: Laugh-a-minute over the Christmas table. Great for kids who want to introduce ‘Joke Friday’ to their school classroom!

Best for English 11Plus

Books to relax minds, but not to the extent that they retreat into sleep mode! The books below are well-written with challenging vocabulary to keep young brains ticking over the festive break. 

Schools often compile book lists for the holidays. In fact, many leading schools e.g St. Paul’s, have a list of suggested books on their website, especially for those preparing for the 11Plus.

If you’d prefer a more personalised selection, you could always ask your 11Plus English Tutor for books to suit your child’s reading taste.

When Fishes Flew: The Story of Elena’s War

  • In a nutshell: Classic Morpurgo.

Journey to the River Sea by Eva Ibbotson

  • In a nutshell: Extremely well-written with enough Amazonian spirit and mystery to satisfy the most curious mind.

The Adventures of Sherlock Holme by Arthur Conan Doyle 

A perfect mystery book with a generous sprinkle of mind-stretching words such as, incorrigible, opulence and obstinacy.

  • In a nutshell: Thoughtfully challenging. 

The Very Merry Murder Club by Serena Patel & Robin Stevens

Delightfully mischievous, which has made it a hit with young (discerning) readers.

  • In a nutshell: A must-have for fans of the Murder Most Unladylike series.

The Golden Acorn by Catherine Cooper

Part of the Jack Brenin Series. Follow Jack on an adventure of a life time, with endless twists and turns.

  • In a nutshell: A sensitively written adventure series with a generous touch of rural bliss.

Young, Gifted and Black: Meet 52 Black Heroes from Past and Present by Jamia Wilson

Meet icons including, Mo Farah, Zadie Smith and Louis Armstrong.

  • In a nutshell: Eye-opening and uplifting.

Best for the family

Big Panda and Tiny Dragon by James Norbury

Take the time to saviour the soulful words on each page. Reading it once simply isn’t enough- this book is a keeper.

  • In a nutshell: Melting hearts and minds.     

Best for 4-8 year olds

Poems Aloud by Joseph Coelho

A collection of short and long poems that will stick in young minds.

  • In a nutshell: Poetry made cool! 

13 Words by Lemony Snickett and illustrator Maria Kalman

A book to put an enormous grin on your face.

  • In a nutshell: Cute and funny, but not to be underestimated.

The Night Before Christmas by Clement C Moore (A modern adaptation of the Classic Tale)

  • In a nutshell: Gorgeously festive and best read on Christmas Eve. 

Posted on December 4th 2021

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