Sunday 29 April 2012

Take a look at the books we've got #7

How exciting!  We're taking part in the first ever UK based Letterbox Love, a weekly meme where book bloggers share news on the books they've received or are reading.  We're spreading the book love.

Letterbox Love #1
In our Letterbox Love this week:

After the Snow by S.D. Crockett - received from Macmillan for review. "Willo is a straggler kid living in the dangerous and barren landscape of a new ice age...(...)...he discovers that his entire family is gone.(...)...The dog spirit inside his head is his guide and his only companion." So reads the dust jacket - and yes, it is a beautiful dust jacket!  The story sounds fascinating and we're really looking forward to this one.

Artichoke Hearts and Jasmine Skies by Sita Brahmachari.  These were bought to be shared between us on World Book Night last Monday. Little M had heard about Artichoke Hearts a few months back. It was also the winner of the Waterstones Children's Book Award 2011 And then I heard about Jasmine Skies, which is the sequel. Artichoke Hearts is about 13 year old Mira Levenson and how she learns about the different kinds of love that you can hold in your heart. The story for Jasmine Skies is utterly compelling as Mira flies off to India on her own for the first time to discover the secrets of her family's past. Everything about the world of Brahmachari's writing is richly and lovingly textured.  It just makes you feel so warm.

You can read what Sita had to say to us about her writing for teens and adults in her novels here.

And because it's so beautiful and full of wanderlust, here's her trailer for Jasmine Skies:

Saturday 28 April 2012

What's going on.....#2

What's going on?  We did a bit of a We Sat Down catch-up a few weeks back and thought we'd make it a bit more regular. What's Going On will be our catch-up on all things books and reading that have caught our eye.

And we thought we'd put a bit of Marvin Gaye and Cyndi Lauper into the mix :)

We Sat Down book love

Highlights of the last week:

Elizabeth Wein’s Code Name Verity Dolls - have a look. These are awesome and the story is touching too.

Our first ‘We Sat Down’ chat series launched with Boundaries in YA fiction and it has started a lot of conversation already. It has featured the colourful Sita Brahmachari and more authors are lined up.

World Book Night – 23 April; we weren’t taking part but in a similar vein we did win a set of 10 books from Booktrust which we will be sharing with readers in a variety of ways (watch this space!).

There's been a bit of a shake-up in the shortlist for The Queen of Teen award; it’s glitzy, frothy image sparks controversy among authors and readers alike and this year has its first male nominee (James Dawson). This already has re-ignited the debate about gender and book awards. 

#fedbkgrp Twitter chat (Sunday 22 April) discussed the theme of war in children’s stories.  Great discussion and a good way to pick up new book recommendations. Next Twitter chat: Sun 6 May 8-9 follow #fedbkgrp or Adam Lancaster for updates.
The #DauntlessUK Insurgent promo from Dark Readers was really good book fun.  Take a look.  (We're Candor faction members, so we're just being honest!)

Coming up….
We’ll be looking out for 'My Suitcase is Packed' (published by English Pen), a project which produced a book by young people who have recently arrived in London from over 20 countries.

A Carnegie Shadowing cake contest is being run by Roundwood Park School Library (ask Miss Adkins for info). It’s open to schools and individuals.  Get your baking photos in by 13th June.

Speaking of war stories, Hitler’s Angel by William Osborne (Chicken House) releases in May; Insignia by SJ Kincaid (Hot Key Books) is set in WWIII and that launches in August in the UK.

The In My Mailbox controversy among book bloggers has resulted in a bit of chirping about a British version taking off.  Some Spooky Letterbox Love might be up! Ask us on Twitter (or in the comments on this page) and we'll point you in the right direction.

1-8 May Insurgent release and Harper Collins UK has arranged a massive online promotion event involving some 70 or so book bloggers who’ve been split into five factions to battle it out for a prize at the end.  So, stay tuned for a week of Insurgent reviews and Divergent chaos. We’re having a bit of a party on here for #CANDORUK on Tues 1 May.  Do come and join us.

Win £20 Accessorize vouchers by decorating your own flipflops as part of the Flip-Flop Club book launch. Send your photo to by 1 June 2012.
Win a signed copy of a Joshua Files book and goodies by MG Harris. 

That's it!  Do you have any fab book news you'd like to share?

Friday 27 April 2012

In My Mailbox - Very Special Edition!

That's right.  It's a very, very special edition of In My Mailbox so we'll have two this week!

Booktrust Giveaway
A very large parcel turned up on our doorstep this week containing some very commendable books.  We'd won them from Booktrust in a book giveaway. All you had to do was tweet the tile of your best book of the past 10 years and why.  I tweeted The Book Thief because it will have been passed along three generations in our family and across two continents.  They liked our tweet very much. 

So we won......10 books!

The 10 books were those titles on the shortlist for the Blue Peter Best Children's Book of the last 10 years*:

1. Diary of a Wimpy Kid - Jeff Kinney (winner)
2. A Series of Unfortunate Events 5: The Austere Academy - Lemony Snicket
3. Private Peaceful - Michael Morpurgo
4. Skeleton Key - Anthony Horowitz
5. Mr Stink - David Walliams
6. Horrid Henry and the Football Fiend - Francesca Simon
7. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix - JK Rowling
8. Theodore Boone - John Grisham
9. Silverfin - Charlie Higson
10. Candyfloss - Jaqueline Wilson

Thank you, Booktrust. In true Booktrust spirit, we'll be having a lot more to say about our booksharing adventures with these books!

Blue Peter Best Children's Book of the Last 10 Years shortlist 2012

* "The shortlist is made up of the 10 bestselling fiction books (by volume) of the last 10 years for 5- to 11-year-olds with a first publication date between January 2002 and December 2011. Only the top-selling book per individual, named author is included." - Booktrust

Thursday 26 April 2012

We Sat Down for a Chat...Sita Brahmachari on YA

We're delighted to welcome the award-winning author of Artichoke Hearts and Jasmine Skies, Sita Brahmachari, as a guest blogger to kick off our chats about boundaries in Young Adult fiction. Sita talks about the the influence of her own childhood and the universal appeal of her stories. It really is a sumptuous delight.


Childhood objects that influenced Jasmine Skies

When I wrote Artichoke Hearts, I simply set out to write the story as seen through the eyes of Mira my twelve year old protagonist.  As I was writing I didn't think that I was necessarily writing a story for young people. I simply thought I wanted to tell a story that explored the complex layers of the human heart. I was keen to explore, through a young girl's eyes, a rites of passage moment (the whole books spans only one month).

Having worked with young people of this transitional teen age all my life I find as a storyteller that they sit in a moment that is between childhood and adult worlds and imaginations. I find it freeing to explore the dream worlds of my teenage characters and their vivid imaginations, and how these sit alongside the daily gritty reality of my character's lives.

I draw strongly on ideas that dominated my own thoughts in childhood, and those thoughts still play around my mind today. Therefore, an exploration of loss and love and identity is just as potent to me now as it was when I was a child. I have had many adults, parents and grandparents comment on how they feel that they have enjoyed the story just as much as their children. People sometimes suggest that they read the story as adults, bringing a different perception to the work.

Jasmine Skies and Artichoke Hearts

Artichoke Hearts has been read by Bereavement Counsellors and Nurses and Doctors in hospices, grandparents and grandchildren. I have characters across the generations in both of my stories, because I try to create whole and inter-connected worlds and the stories belong in different ways to each generation.

Jasmine Skies has only recently been published but I am already having adults contact me to say how much they are enjoying it; people who have travelled around India, adults who remember the first time their eyes were opened onto a wider world. The first time we travelled alone without our families and felt a sense of vulnerability and started to question who we are.

The themes and ideas in Jasmine Skies are clearly relevant to adults as we see them repeated in adult novels: themes of tracing your history, needing to know your background, exploring family secrets...   I think as adults we all remember these rites of passage times of our lives. As a 46 year old it is refreshing to revisit this teenage voice and world, where everything was before you. I think perhaps it might also be the reason why adults enjoy reading my work.

Thank you, Sita!

Artichoke Hearts won the Waterstones Children's Book Award 2011. You can find out more about Sita Brahmachari on her blog and on My Kinda Book.

Tuesday 24 April 2012

Little M's Review - Hitler's Angel

Hitler’s Angel by William Osborne

Hitler's Angel - William Osborne
Hitler’s Angel is about a girl (Leni) and a boy (Otto) who have been asked to go back to Germany and kidnap a girl (Angelika) to try and take down Hitler. The story starts in 1940. Angelika is on a small island in the middle of a lake. Otto and Leni have to try and get to the lake without the Nazis tracking them.

I really enjoyed the book.  It is a book that I have never really ever come across – the whole concept of the story where they have to try and kidnap a girl.

My favourite character was Leni. She was brave and I didn’t think a girl would be that brave. I thought only men went out and did missions during the war.

I would describe this book as a sad and daring adventure story. I cried in some parts but giggled in others.

I don’t think they should take this out but I didn’t like the part where Britain wanted a nine year old girl from Germany to destroy Hitler because her life would be wanted by Germany and Britain. I didn’t like this part because she was only nine year’s old and her life had only just started.

There was quite a bit of violence as you could guess (World War II).  There were gunshots and lots of guns and a teeny bit of gore.

I would recommend this book to readers who like stories about World War II, readers who like adventure and readers who like army type of things. It’s my type of book because I like things about the wars.

Publication details:
Chicken House, May 2012, Somerset, paperback

Our copy: ours, gifted from So Many Books So Little Time

Sunday 22 April 2012

In My Mailbox #5

In My Mailbox #5
In My Mailbox is hosted by Kirst at The Story Siren.  each week book bloggers join in to share the differetn titles that they've received each week.  It's great to see what people are going to read.

This week we've received some titles that I'm very excited about.

First, Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein from the new Egmont YA imprint, Electric Monkey. It's about two women friends during World War II.  One of them's a pilot and the other's a spy.  It's a female adventure story - and it looks and sounds like it'll be grainy. And the reviews for it have been outstanding.  I'm planning to savour this one.

Second, Slated by Teri Terry from Orchard. This one's due out in May and it's a good one.  I know because I'd finished reading it before I wrote this post. Our review will be out shortly.  It's a dystopian thriller narrated by Kyla, a sixteen year old girl whose memory has been wiped in a special hospital - she's been slated. Now she is released after signing a contract. And she discovers that's she's after the truth.

And then three more picked up from the local public library. 

The Other Side of Truth by Beverley Naidoo (Puffin).  Little M had read Naidoo's Journey to Jo'burg in school and that had previously been banned in South Africa. So, any author who's been banned has some kind of writing kudos in my eyes (haven't read the blurb so don't even know what it's about).

Then by Morris Gleitzman (Puffin).  Little M and I both loved Gleitzman's Once so we'll happily give Then a go.  The blurb has the word Nazis in it.

And Click by 10 voices (Scholastic) in association with Amnesty International. Ten bestselling authors united to write this 'novel of wonders and surprise'.  The authors are Colfer, Park, Ozeki, Hornby, Wynne-Jones, Almond, Maguire, Ellis, Lanagan and Doyle.

Friday 20 April 2012

We Sat Down For a Chat...about YA

Age guidance on book cover
When we started We Sat Down, Little M and I had very little idea of what YA fiction was. We would both raise a questioning eyebrow at each other when we came to the end of the 8-12 shelf.  Or when we asked for a particular title and the librarian would say, ‘oh, that one’s in YA’.  Or more confusingly, ‘yes, there’s a copy in the children’s section and YA’.  And just a couple of days ago, I was told off for using Little M’s children’s card to get YA books from the library.  They let me but mumbled that you can’t take adult books out on a children’s card (probably to do with avoiding potential fines…).

Of course, Little M’s interest is in finding books that she wants to read. For her, “adult books are boring” but some books are “too childish”. For me, I’m interested in books that we’ll both read because I do think many good books will carry across the generations.

We’ve both started sayings things to each other like “yes, you’ll like this one” or “no, I don’t think you’ll like it” and that’s marvellous.  But I’ve also found that I’m saying things like “maybe you should wait a couple more years”. It usually has sex in it. Or quantum physics. And then there are some books where I simply say “I wouldn’t bother.  It’s terribly written and there are so many other good books out there.”  And violence for the sake of it, well I wouldn’t recommend that to anyone (and it remains one of my bugbears about Divergent).

But now, we kind of get the idea that YA often starts at 12+.  But then there are group author blogs aimed at particular age groups. Like Girls Heart Books is aimed at readers 8-14. And newly-formed UKYA which sees itself as a step on from here starting at about 13+. And YA in general seems to be mainly for girls? But we’ve found a couple of book blogs that focus on ‘boy readers’ like The Bookzone and Literature for Lads. There's The Edge too where authors tackle controversial content issues.

And then publishers often have an altogether different age categorisation system. And there are some who simply seem to treat it as a new genre with a growing cult of fan-readers.  And the ‘ands’ go on and on – particularly among publishers and the would-be-literati.  What we’re really interested in (probably me more than Little M) is how much these distinctions help us to find the books that we really want to read.

There have been lively debates about this in response partly to some writer who was a bit snobby about it all but just this week the Booktrust’s series of children's book seminars at the London Book Fair sparked off a number of Twitter and blog debates.

When we set up this blog, we stuck a poll on it (as you do, playing around with widgets and stuff).  We asked whether or not age categories were useful for books. To bring that poll to a close, and in recognition of our recent booky explorations, we’ll be running a series of blog posts on the different sorts of boundaries that are part of the YA fiction environment.

We’ve been in conversation with some exciting and award-winning authors, including Sita Brahmachari (Artichoke Hearts and Jasmine Skies). We’re delighted that we’ll be in conversation with them over the coming weeks……please come and join us.

Tuesday 17 April 2012

Little M Review - Sky Hawk

Sky Hawk by Gill Lewis
Sky Hawk by Gill Lewis.

Sky Hawk is about a boy called Callum (he’s about eleven or twelve) and a girl called Iona (same age as Callum). Iona has a secret that no-one else knows but now she is going to tell Callum. Oh poo, now I can’t tell you what the secret’s about because it will ruin it…!

The book is set in Scotland. There is an osprey nesting on the McGregor’s farm. It’s windy, snowy, pretty much typical English weather (lol). This book is about animals, friendship between people, and trying to save things.

I enjoyed it a lot. I also cried a lot in some parts but smiled in some parts. A terrible thing happens twice (two different things).  The first one was very, very, very sad. It made me cry. And the second one, in the end, made me happy.

I’ve never read anything like this before. I would recommend Sky Hawk to bird-lovers, Michael Morpurgo fans, and ages 9-13 and a little bit older.

For me a message of the book was that you can find something even if it’s far away.

Publication details
Oxford University Press, 2011, paperback

This copy: borrowed from public library

Sunday 15 April 2012

In My Mailbox #4

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren. Book bloggers show everyone the bookish bits they've received each week.  It's a great way to find out about new books and just see what people are up to.

This week's In My Mailbox is full of book surprises for Little M, boomarks, human rights and summertime fun! Wow.

Books - In My Mailbox

First, a copy of Hitler’s Angel by William Osborne (from Chicken House).  This was kindly gifted to us by the lovely Sophie Waters from So Many Books So Little Time.  It's about two boys who escape from the Nazi's but end up on a secret mission. War and adventure stories are a top favourite with Little M so this looks great. And look, Bear Grylls says it’s ‘An incredible adventure and great page turner!’ Well, if Bear Grylls says it….:)

Next, a surprise review copy of The Case of the Deadly Desperados by Caroline Lawrence (Orion). Little M's never read a wild western so this'll be a new one. To be perfectly honest, there's something about this book that is very intriguing.  I think I will take a look too....It’s also a beautiful hardback and Caroline has written a lovely inscription in it!

Thank you Caroline and Sophie!  These both look great. And by authors we’ve never read before.


We also got bookmarks – one of our indulgences!  Some author-signed bookmarks from So Many Books So Little Time as well as bookmarks picked up at a recent Amnesty International UK event.  Did you know that you can support human rights by purchasing books online from Amnesty?  They have a selection of good children’s books, fiction and non-fiction.  They also have secondhand bookstores in Newcastle, Brighton, Bristol, Cambridge, Great Malvern and Hammersmith. Any dystopian fans should also take a look.

From human rights to summertime fun….

We received some booklets about The Flip-Flop Club adventure series by Ellen Richardson from Oxford University Press via The Reading Agency’s Chatterbooks programme aimed at young readers from about 8-14 years.

This also came with info about a competition to win signed copies of the Flip Flop Club Charmed Summer and £20 of Accessorize vouchers.  All you need to do is design your own flip-flops – either on paper or a real pair.  Send you photos in to by 1 June 2012.

A different IMM for us this week...what did you get?

Thursday 12 April 2012

Review - My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece

My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece
My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece. The title of this novel intrigued me when I first heard about it but the subject matter made me wonder if it was a bit too old for some middle grade readers – a family coping with having a dead sister blown up by a bomb! A bit macabre. But then I read the first page and it was light-hearted and sweetly comical. I had high hopes for Annabel Pitcher's novel. 

The story is told from 10 year old Jamie’s perspective. Struggling to cope with the death of Rose a few years back, his parents have split up and he has moved with his dad and elder sister Jasmine to the Lake District.  Their mother has left them.  The novel tells the story of them coping in a new place and a new school without their mother and with the persistent presence of Rose.  For someone who’s dead you’ll be amazed at how much she really does live on their mantelpiece!

For those who love a good story, this definitely has it. It is a lovely story about misunderstandings, the different way people grieve, bullying, belief, racism, friendship, belonging and love. And secrets....ssshhh... It includes a whole bunch of laughs, the odd tear, and quite a bit of action. And some football. It is not macabre at all.

Pitcher’s characterisation is wonderful. I liked Jamie from page one but the secondary characters – Jas, Rose, Sunya, dad, Mrs Farmer, Roger – they come alive in the book too. I kept thinking I was there in the Ambleside playground or football field too. I loved Jamie, Jas and Sunya but really disliked the adults.  Is this a coincidence that all the middle grade books I’ve read recently are about awful adults who you really don’t want to be like?  These aren’t just the adults who are a bit of a pain because they won’t let you do what you want or embarrass you in the way that adults seem to be embarrassing.  No, these adults really are a bit – yeah, awful. 

For me, My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece was close to a perfect read but I found the lead up to the end disappointing. No spoilers but I think one part could have been left out – it seemed a bit cheesy and out of place.

A wonderful read for any age.  It really is a feast.

Publication Details:
2011, Indigo (Orion), London, paperback

Copy:  our own

Tuesday 10 April 2012

Animal Stories

These have all been on our bookshelves!

Sheltie the Shetland Pony series – Peter Clover (Puffin) – the series that got me into reading forever!

Some of my favourites:

Samphire Song - Jill Hucklesby (Egmont)
The Silver Brumby – Elyne Mitchell (Harper Collins)
The House at World’s End – Monica Dickens (Piccolo)
Summer at World’s End – Monica Dickens (Piccolo)
Born to Run – Michael Morpurgo (Harper Collins)
Marley: A dog like no other – John Grogan (Harper Collins)

And then the rest of my animal kingdom is:

Sky Hawk – Gill Lewis (Oxford University Press)
War Horse – Michael Morpurgo (Egmont)
Shadow – Michael Morpurgo (Harper Collins)
Running Wild – Michael Morpurgo (Harper Collins)
The Butterfly Lion – Michael Morpurgo (Harper Collins)
Nobody’s Horse – Jane Smiley (Faber & Faber)
Wild Rescue Poacher Peril – J. Burchett & S. Vogler (Stripes)
The Totally True Story of Devon – Jon Katz (Random House)
Christian the Lion – adapted by Ruth Knowles (Red Fox)
A Dog So Small – Philippa Pearce (Puffin)
The World According to Humphrey – Betty G Birney (Faber & Faber)
Pony Club Secrets series – Stacy Gregg (Harper Collins)
Tilly’s Pony Tails series – Pippa Funnell (Orion)
My Secret Unicorn series – Linda Chapman (Puffin)
National Velvet – Enid Bagnold (not read yet)
Black Beauty – Anna Sewell (not read yet but we know the story!)
My Friend Flicka – Mary O’Hara (one of M’s favourite books as a teen!)
Thunderhead – Mary O’Hara (one of M’s favourite books as a teen!)

Michael Morpurgo

Sunday 8 April 2012

IMM #3 - What a Cracking Easter!

Easter time!
In My Mailbox is a weekly meme where everybody shows off books they've received that week.  It is hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren.


Our books this week have been a basketful of surprises and delights! These are the books the Easter bunny brought.

For Little M:

"Thief by Malorie Blackman. The blurb says it's about a girl called Lydia who was in a storm and then she realises that she's in the future and a cruel tyrant rules the town. It looks quite gripping.  I wonder why it's called the thief?  I can't wait to read it!"

"Girl, Missing by Sophie McKenzie is next. Lots of my friends read some of the Sophie McKenzie's....oh my gosh, I was just reading the blurb at school the other day and I thought oh my gosh I have to read this.  The blurb says it's about Lauren who is adopted and discovers that she has been snatched from an American family when she was a baby."

"The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. I found out about it from a friend who knew the film was coming out and she had read the book and said it was really good.  So it made me really want to read it.  And here I am, I have it!"

There was also When God Was a Rabbit by Sarah Winman for M, The Bourne Dominion by Eric van Lustbader for dad, and a Rough Guide to the Netherlands.

Oh, and some chocolate too!

Books  received in the post
Then in the post, we got a proof copy of Insignia by SJ Kincaid, published in the UK by Hot Key Books in August 2012 (M's read it already!).  And our prize from March's British Book Challenge was books from Simon & Schuster: Someone Else's Life by Katie Dale, Falling Fast by Sophie McKenzie, Dark Storm by Sarah Singleton and Fated by Sarah Alderson.  Thanks!  Also, a postcard from Hot Key Books and some bookmarks from Caroline Lawrence promoting her Roman Mystery Scrolls, a brand new series of mini-series for early readers.

But what's Easter without an Easter egg hunt - with a twist?! These are the books (borrowed from our own bookshelves) that the Easter Bunny used in our Easter hunt book trail!

Easter book trail

What a lot we got!  What's in your mailbox?

Thursday 5 April 2012

YA lit is a blast!

Harper Collins

When we sat down on the sofa on the 14th March, who’d have thought we’d end up here today? Little M just wanted to keep a list of her books….then share her thoughts and get inspiration for good authors and good books to read.

The past three weeks have been an absolute blast. We’ve heard about so many great books – new and old – and authors too.  And we’ve been chatting with so many lovely readers and writers who have been so helpful. Thank you!

Here’s what's been going on and a little heads up on some middle grade and teen/YA book news:

·        Little M’s bookshelves were on show at The Overflowing Library’s Bookcase Showcase. We signed up to The British Book Challenge 2012 hosted by the Overflowing Library. And we won the March’s prize pack from Simon & Schuster (more about that coming in our Easter In My Mailbox post). 

·         We’re following the very hot and brand new Hot Key Books who – like us – are at the beginning of their journey (woohoo). They invited us to guest post on how we choose our books where we highligted the importance to us of recommendation and the Carnegie Book Awards. And we’re also privileged to be reading a proof of SJ Kincaid’s Insignia – Hot Key’s first launch title coming out in august 2012.

·         We’ve seen the launch of the #UKYA site which is a fantastic resource for anyone who wants to discover authors of Young Adult and teen literature in the UK.  We’ll be using it loads!

·         We heard exciting news about Lauren St John’s Laura Marlin series for younger readers (middle grade/10-12ish)  Book 3 is being written – for horse lovers, it’s about the Kentucky Derby.  And she’s gone off to research Book 4 in St Petersburg, Russia!

And….yes, we were all waiting for it……


·         INSURGENT by Veronica Roth. Our first two book reviews (Little M’s and M’s) were for Divergent.  And now the sequel, Insurgent, will be launched in the UK by Harper Collins on 1 May.
·         But the best bit for We Sat Down – we’ve been selected for the blogging Team #CANDORUK. Yes, we're part of a faction! WOOhooo!!! This means we’ll be among the first to get our hands on an advance copy of Insurgent – before 1 May!  Watch out for reviews coming up during that week. And to be honest, the #CANDORUK reviews will totally spill the truth on Insurgent.

To follow team #CANDORUK news, here is our fabulous team:

We Sat Down (that’s us!)

Wednesday 4 April 2012

Little M Review - Maximum Ride School's Out Forever

Maximum Ride School's Out Forever
In James Patterson's Maximum Ride School's Out Forever, Max and her flock are on a mission to find their parents, save the world and fit into a new school.

This is the second book in the Maximum Ride series. If you haven’t read any of the Maximum Ride books or any reviews then this is a quick recap. Max, Fang, Iggy, the Gasman, Nudge and Angel are all 98% human and 2% bird. They have no parents to keep them under control. They escaped from a science lab in the first book. Here is my review of it.
In this book the flock are on their way to find their parents. Fang gets hurt and a walker that is passing by calls the hospital. Poor Max and the flock have to go to the hospital they absolutely hate.  And then a mysterious FBI agent comes and takes them to where she lives. Are they going to find out who she really is or is it going to stay a mystery?  
This book took me on an adventure that I never would like to go on. At some points in it I thought this is going to happen and that can’t be possible but I was wrong. An adventure, a tiny bit of romance and a few jokes along the way.
The second book just gets better and better and I found that I enjoyed the second book more than the first.  I have read the third book. And I am now reading the fourth book.
I hope you get your hands on the books if you want them :) 

Published in paperback in 2007.
Little, Brown
New York  

I borrowed this copy from my friend.


Sunday 1 April 2012

In My Mailbox #2

We love taking part in The Story Siren's In My Mailbox meme. It's a great way to find out about the different books that readers have received. If you don't already know about In My Mailbox, pop on over to The Story Siren to find out more and how to join in.

This is our second In My Mailbox (to be honest, we don't have a mailbox).  This week we have five books. See if anyone can spot any similarities in the covers!

The first one is The Giver by Lois Lowry, bought with a World Book Day token.  This comes strongly recommended and we've found it on all sorts of lists.  Hailed by Harper Collins as an Essential Modern Classic and it won the Newberry Medal. It's the story of how even a perfect utopia can have its problems.  One of the earlier children's dystopias.  Can't wait.

Second and third, it's James Patterson's Maximum Ride - again.  The third in the series, Maximum Ride: Saving the World and Other Extreme Sports has been lent by a school friend.  The fourth title in the series, Maximum Ride: The Final Warning, has been borrowed from the library. (psst....haven't seen Little M for hours - she's already off on her fourth Maximum Ride!)

Fourth is Sky Hawk by Gill Lewis and has also been borrowed from the library. Having read an excerpt on the internet, it looks great.  Animals (actually, Mina would like it - birds!), adventures and secrets in the countryside....fab.

Fifth is The New Policeman by Kate Thompson.  Also borrowed from the library, this was actually on the school's recommended reading lists for KS3.  JJ tries to buy his mother some time - that's sounds right up our street - and there's mystery, myth and magic in it too.  Sounds a bit science fictiony and fantastical.  Fabuloso perhaps?

And look who else has taken an interest in our books!

Have any of you read any of these books?  And what books did you get in your mailbox?