Media Wall
01438 222500    |    

Recommended Reads

Some much loved old favourites and some new books to discover... we hope you enjoy them.

LGBTQ+ History Month Special - February 2022

Children s 1

Me, My Dad and the End of the Rainbow
Benjamin Dean
Suitable for ages 10+

'The novel wears its heart on its sleeve, and it is a very big heart' – Financial Times

My name’s Archie Albright, and I know two things for certain:

1. My mum and dad kind of hate each other, and they’re not doing a great job of pretending that they don’t anymore.

2. They’re both keeping a secret from me, but I can’t figure out what.

Things aren't going great for Archie Albright. His dad's acting weird, his mum too, and all he wants is for everything to go back to normal, to three months before when his parents were happy and still lived together. When Archie sees a colourful, crumpled flyer fall out of Dad's pocket, he thinks he may have found the answer. Only problem? The answer might just lie at the end of the rainbow, an adventure away.

Together with his best friends, Bell and Seb, Archie sets off on a heartwarming and unforgettable journey to try and fix his family, even if he has to break a few rules to do it...

Proud of Me
Sarah Hagger-Holt
Suitable for ages 10+

All I want is for my family to be proud of me...

An accessible child-centred story about self-acceptance and the importance of opening up to those closest to you.

Becky and Josh are almost-twins, with two mums and the same anonymous donor dad. Josh can't wait until he's eighteen, the legal age when he can finally contact his donor, and he'll do anything to find out more ­­­- even if it involves lying.

Becky can't stop thinking about her new friend, Carli. Could her feelings for Carli be a sign of something more? Becky and Josh both want their parents to be proud of them...but right now, they're struggling to even accept themselves.

LGTBQ+ Matters
Matt Anniss
Suitable for ages 10+

What exactly does being lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender mean? How has the gay rights movement helped to change society's view of the LGBT community during the past century? What is it like to have same-sex parents? How do people 'come out' to their friends? What is homophobia? Find out all this and much more.

Using real-life case studies, this book gives sensitive insights into what it means to be LGBT in 21st century Britain.

Ace of Spades
Faridah Abike-Iyimide
Suitable for ages 11 – 14

Welcome to Niveus Private Academy, where money paves the hallways, and the students are never less than perfect. Until now. Because anonymous texter, Aces, is bringing two students' dark secrets to light.

Talented musician Devon buries himself in rehearsals, but he can't escape the spotlight when his private photos go public. Head girl Chiamaka isn't afraid to get what she wants, but soon everyone will know the price she has paid for power. Someone is out to get them both. Someone who holds all the aces. And they're planning much more than a high-school game.

Ace of Spades is Gossip Girl meets Get Out, with a shocking twist. Buried secrets come to light when two students are targeted by an anonymous bully with an explosive agenda.

Afterlove
Tanya Byrne
Suitable for ages 11-14

Ash Persaud is about to become a reaper in the afterlife, but she is determined to see her first love Poppy Morgan again, the only thing that separates them is death. Car headlights. The last thing Ash hears is the snap of breaking glass as the windscreen hits her and breaks into a million pieces like stars. But she made it, she's still here. Or is she?

This New Year's Eve, Ash is gets an RSVP from the afterlife she can't decline: to join a clan of fierce girl reapers who take the souls of the city's dead to await their fate. But Ash can't forget her first love, Poppy, and she will do anything to see her again - even if it means they only get a few more days together.

What If It’s Us
Becky Albertalli
Suitable for ages 12+

Meet Arthur and Ben.

Arthur is only in New York for the summer, but if Broadway has taught him anything, it’s that the universe can deliver a showstopping romance when you least expect it.

Ben thinks the universe needs to mind its business. If the universe had his back, he wouldn’t be carrying a box of his ex-boyfriend’s things.

But when the boys have a chance meeting at the post office, they leave wondering what exactly the universe does have in store for them.

What if - in a city of eight million people - they can't find each other again?

What if they do ... and then can’t nail a first date even after three do-overs?

What if Arthur tries too hard to make it work and Ben doesn’t try hard enough?

What if life really isn’t like a Broadway play?

But what if it is? What if it's us?

The Black Flamingo
Dean Atta
Suitable for ages 12+

"I loved every word" Malorie Blackman

This is not about being ready, it's not even about being fierce, or fearless, It’s about being free.

Michael waits in the stage wings, wearing a pink wig, pink fluffy coat and black heels.

One more step will see him illuminated by spotlight.

He has been on a journey of bravery to get here, and he is almost ready to show himself to the world in bold colours ...

Can he emerge as The Black Flamingo?

Fin & Rye & Fireflies
Harry Cook
Suitable for ages 12+

Fin Whittle is sixteen and he likes guys. A fact which seems to be complicating his life.

One minute Fin's kissing the godlike Jesse; the next he s been cruelly outed. His family's response? To up sticks in search of a 'fresh start'.

A fresh start won't change the truth of who Fin is. Obviously. But it does introduce him to the best squad in town: kick-ass Poppy, her on-off girlfriend June and the super cute, super irresistible Rye.

Fin soon has a serious crush. And Rye might just feel the same way. But Fin's parents aren't happy. If their son won't change his 'lifestyle', they ll force him onto the straight and narrow . . . by way of 'conversion therapy'. An outrageous plan is needed to face down the haters and to give Fin and Rye (and their fireflies) a chance at the happy-ever-after their story deserves . . .

From moonlit meet-ups to vintage diners, pride parades to a passion for old vinyl, Fin & Rye & Fireflies is a gloriously upbeat tale of being true to yourself no matter what.

Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda
Becky Albertalli
Suitable for ages 14+

The beloved, award-winning novel is now a major motion picture starring 13 Reasons Why's Katherine Langford and Everything, Everything's Nick Robinson.

16-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. And worse still, so will the privacy of 'Blue', the pen name of the boy he's been emailing. With messy dynamics emerging in Simon's once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon's life suddenly becomes just a little complicated. Now Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he's pushed out - without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he's never met.

The Miseducation of Cameron Post
Emily Danforth
Suitable for ages 14+

** Now a major film starring Chloe Grace Moretz - winner of the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival **

When Cameron Post's parents die suddenly in a car crash, her shocking first thought is relief. Relief they'll never know that, hours earlier, she had been kissing a girl. But that relief doesn't last, and Cam is forced to move in with her conservative aunt Ruth and her well-intentioned but hopelessly old-fashioned grandmother. She knows that from this point on, her life will forever be different. Survival in Miles City, Montana, means blending in and leaving well enough alone, and Cam becomes an expert at both. Then Coley Taylor moves to town. Beautiful, pickup-driving Coley is a perfect cowgirl with the perfect boyfriend to match. She and Cam forge an unexpected and intense friendship, one that seems to leave room for something more to emerge. But just as that starts to seem like a real possibility, ultrareligious Aunt Ruth takes drastic action to 'fix' her niece.

My Brother’s Name Is Jessica
John Boyne
Suitable for ages 10+

Sam Waver's life has always been pretty quiet. A bit of a loner, he struggles to make friends, and his busy parents often make him feel invisible. Luckily for Sam, his older brother, Jason, has always been there for him. Sam idolises Jason, who seems to have life sorted - he's kind, popular, amazing at football, and girls are falling over themselves to date him. But then one evening Jason calls his family together to tell them that he's been struggling with a secret for a long time. A secret which quickly threatens to tear them all apart. His parents don't want to know and Sam simply doesn't understand. Because what do you do when your brother says he's not your brother at all? That he thinks he's actually your sister?

The Boy in the Dress
David Walliams
Suitable for ages 10+

'The sparkling debut children’s novel from David Walliams, number one bestseller and fastest growing children’s author in the country.

Dennis was different.
Why was he different, you ask?
Well, a small clue might be in the title of this book.

Charming, surprising and hilarious - The Boy in the Dress is everything you would expect from the co-creator of Little Britain. David Walliams’s beautiful first novel will touch the hearts (and funny bones) of children and adults alike.'

What Is Gender? How Does It Define us? And Other Big Questions
Juno Dawson
Suitable for ages 10+

A highly topical look at the concept of gender, encouraging children to think for themselves about the issues involved.

What's the difference between sex and gender? What does it mean to be defined by your gender? Are there only two genders? This informative book helps kids to explore these questions and many more, explaining that there are differences of opinion and that answers are not always straightforward.

The Same Inside: Poems About Empathy and Friendship
Roger Stevens
Suitable for ages 10+

A sweet and thoughtful collection of poems about friendship, diversity, empathy and respect. These poems deal sensitively with tolerance for differences (including race, religion and gender identity), feelings, empathy, respect, courtesy, bullying, disability and responsibility. They are the perfect springboard to start conversations.

Summer Show 2019 - Chicago
Jay Peak 2019
Sorrento 2019