What To Read Now

Tyger, The Chestnut Roaster, Girlhood Unfiltered -our What To Read Now

What To Read Now

Our What To Read Now blog has had a bit of a break, but it’s back with a bang with three storming reads for young people. Do let us know what you’ve been reading recently. We might even feature your review here!

Cover of the book Tyger

Tyger – SF Said, illustrated by Dave McKean, suitable for ages 9+

Review by Lucy Walker of BCiS  

Adam and his friend Zadie live in an alternate London where it’s the 21st century, but the British Empire rules the world and slavery has never been abolished.

This book touches on many themes: xenophobia, colonialism, mythology and spirituality, with allusions to the William Blake poem along the way. It reminds the reader that everyone has the power to make a difference. The importance of critical thinking is paramount. SF Said shared a review from fellow author Candy Gourlay in a comment in one of our Secondary Book Chats on Twitter. He said that Candy had identified one of the most significant lines in the book, one that he wants readers to remember: ‘you should never stop questioning the world and everything in it’.

SF has depicted a majestic, otherworldly tyger, but I also loved how the children bury their faces in his fur and cuddle this enormous beast, who purrs in response. It’s a beautiful book, with Dave McKean’s illustrations enhancing the story.

Cover of The Chestnut Roaster

The Chestnut Roaster by Eve McDonnell, illustrated by Ewa Beniak-Haremska, suitable for ages 9+

Review by Ali Palmer of BCiS

 A historical thriller set in the Paris Catacombs in 1888. Piaf remembers everything since the day she was born, a Tuesday, which is both a useful gift and a burden. When everyone in Paris wakes up one day and has forgotten an entire year, which included the loss of twenty gifted children, it is up to Piaf to discover what is really going on. Her first act is to rescue her twin Luc. Then she must find the other children and catch the memory thief. Piaf and Luc are not sure who to trust, and the adventure is as twisty as the Catacombs and very fast-paced. The illustrations by Ewa Beniak-Haremska add to the atmosphere and help create a believable and fantastical world.

Cover of Girlhood Unfiltered

Girlhood Unfiltered, an essay collection by Milk Honey Bees and Ebinehita Iyere, suitable for ages 14+

Review by Ali Palmer of BCiS

These are the stories of young women who demand to be heard, and that is a great joy for the reader. We often believe we know what is best for young people, but why not give them a safe space to explore what being a girl means in the 21st century? This is what Ebinehita Iyere, the founder of Milk Honey Bees, has created. The stories of healing, empowerment, and resilience will help you understand and actively hear what these young people have to say! The cover artwork by Karis Richards makes the book jump off the shelf into your hands.

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