News Hounds: The Puppy Problem, Mammoth, The Summer I Robbed a Bank and We Were Wolves among May's book highlights for young people
Bishop's Stortford College Prep School librarian Lizzie Hall writes about the magic of storytelling...
Dear Reader. There are lots of great new books to look out for this month. Here are some of the highlights...
News Hounds: The Puppy Problem by Laura James and Charlie Alder
Gizmo is a city dog, so when he moves to the village of Puddle with his journalist human he doesn't know what to expect.
Certainly not flowers. Or bees. And he couldn't have even imagined mud.
Luckily, he's got Jilly, the wolfhound next door, to show him around. But Jilly has a problem. Her puppies are going to be given to new owners far away. She'll never see them again!
Gizmo might not know the difference between a cow and a tractor, but he's got a nose for a story and a great idea to help Jilly. What if the dogs of Puddle had a newspaper? Stop press!
Kitty and the Kidnap Trap by Paula Harrison and Jenny Lovlie
In this magical adventure by the light of the moon, Kitty is supposed to be looking after her friend's pet hamster, Marvin, for the weekend but disaster strikes when he's kidnapped!
Kitty must follow the kidnapper's trail and return Marvin to his home safe and sound before the night is out.
It's time for Superhero Kitty to save the day!
Mammoth by Anna Kemp and Adam Beer
Big beast. Big city. Big trouble.
When an Ice Age mammoth finds himself in a modern-day city, he's not at all sure what to make of this huge, gleaming forest. Strange birds in the sky, strange beetles on the ground and strange, shouty cavemen.
Is he the only mammoth in the world?
Otherland by Louie Stowell
When best friends Myra and Rohan discover that Rohan's baby sister Shilpa has been stolen and taken to Otherland, the only way to rescue her is by taking part in a deadly game - three impossible challenges set by the Fairy Queen, the ruler of Otherland.
Win the game, and Rohan and Myra can go home with Shilpa. But lose, and they'll be trapped in Otherland forever.
The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke by Kirsty Applebaum
Lonny is a lifeling. He has the power to heal any living creature and bring it back from the dead.
But he pays a price for this gift - by lengthening the creature's life, he shortens his own.
Lonny has to be careful, he has to stay hidden in the forest. Because if people knew what he could do, Lonny would be left with no life at all.
The Summer I Robbed a Bank by David O'Doherty
"There's a feeling of relief that comes just after you've robbed a bank…"
Rex's parents have split up and, to make matters worse, he has to spend his summer holiday on a remote and rainy Irish island, with only unruly sheep for company.
The only upside: he'll be staying with his strange and brilliant Uncle Derm.
Then Rex discovers Uncle Derm is about to execute his most hair-brained plan yet - to rob the island's travelling bank!
Like the local legend of medieval pirate queen Grace O'Malley, Uncle Derm plans to redistribute the money to local needy causes on the island. And he needs Rex's help...
Teens and YA
Thanks a Lot, Universe by Chad Lucas
Brian has always been anxious, whether at home, in class or on the basketball court.
His dad tries to get him to stand up for himself and his mum helps as much as she can, but after he and his brother are placed in foster care, Brian starts having panic attacks. And he doesn't know if things will ever be 'normal' again.
Ezra's always been popular. He's friends with most of the kids on his basketball team - even Brian, who usually keeps to himself.
But some of his friends have been acting differently and Brian seems to be pulling away.
Ezra wants to help, but he worries if he's too nice to Brian, his friends will realise that he has a crush on him.
We Were Wolves by Jason Cockcroft
Boy lives in a caravan on his own in the woods. His dad, John, is in prison and promises to get out soon. All the boy needs to do is survive alone for a little while longer.
But dark forces are circling, like the dangerous man in the Range Rover, who is looking for his stolen money.
And then there are the ancient forces that have lain asleep in the woods for an age...
Boy in a White Room by Karl Olsberg
A boy wakes to find himself locked in a white room. He has no memories, no idea who he is and no idea how he got there.
A computer-generated voice named Alice responds to his questions - through her, he is able to access the internet.
He gradually pieces together his story - an abduction, a critical injury, snippets of his past - but how can the boy tell what's real and what's not? Who is he really?