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Mrs Bibi's Elephant, Fig Swims the World and Little Fires Everywhere on Bishop's Stortford College librarian Lizzie Hall's recommended reading list




Bishop's Stortford College prep school librarian Lizzie Hall writes for the Indie about the magic of storytelling...

Dear Reader. The Summer Reading Challenge has launched on a digital platform this year. With schools being closed this is an excellent opportunity to motivate children to continue their reading.

Here are some summer reading suggestions for this week...

Babies and toddlers

This is Crab by Harriet Evans

This is Crab. Join him for a cl-awesome adventure and explore the wonders of the ocean.

This is Crab by Harriet Evans (36854837)
This is Crab by Harriet Evans (36854837)

Dive right into this gripping, tipping, nipping interactive book!

Ages 5-8

Mrs Bibi's Elephant by Reza Dalvand

When Mrs Bibi is told her pet elephant has to go, she reluctantly packs her bags and heads off somewhere where they can live together in happiness. But what they both leave behind is far bigger than the other people in the town could have ever imagined.

Mrs Bibi’s Elephant by Reza Dalvand (36854834)
Mrs Bibi’s Elephant by Reza Dalvand (36854834)

A heartwarming story with a message as big as an elephant, this fanciful tale of friendship between an eccentric lady and her beloved pet is as poignant as it is beautiful.

Ages 9-12

Starfell: Willow Moss and the Forgotten Tale by Dominique Valente

Willow Moss, the youngest and least powerful sister in a family of witches, recently saved the world. The problem is, nobody can remember it. And, to make matters worse, her magical ability seems broken. Instead of finding lost things, objects keep disappearing against her will, which is especially troubling now that her friend Sometimes needs her help!

Sometimes has discovered how to see 10 minutes into the future. Unfortunately that's only enough time to find out that his kidnappers are on their way! His only hope is to write an urgent letter to Willow, asking if she wouldn't mind trying to find him.

As Willow and her friends piece together what has happened to Sometimes, their adventure takes them from an enchanted tower to the magical forest of Wisperia and into dangerous new realms. Can Willow save Sometimes when her own powers are out of control?

Starfell: Willow Moss and the Forgotten Tale by Dominique Valente (36854831)
Starfell: Willow Moss and the Forgotten Tale by Dominique Valente (36854831)

Tweens

Fig Swims the World by Lou Abercrombie

Fig Fitzsherbert is good at a lot of things: making lists, playing the piano, advanced mathematics. But it's never quite enough for her high-flying mother, who every New Year's Day sets Fig an impossible resolution.

So one year, Fig decides to set her own challenge instead: she's going to swim her way round the world. There's just one tiny problem - Fig can't swim.

Taking it one length at a time, Fig embarks on the adventure of a lifetime. But with her mother closing in, will she be able to keep her head above water and complete her challenge?

Fig Swims the World by Lou Abercrombie (36854828)
Fig Swims the World by Lou Abercrombie (36854828)

Teens

Pretty Funny by Rebecca Elliott

"Does anyone ever really want to 'fall' in love? Knowing me I'll just trip over it and graze my knee on the gravel of humiliation."

Haylah Swinton is fairly confident she's brilliant at being a girl.

She's an ace best friend, a loving daughter and an INCREDIBLY patient sister to her four-year-old total nutter of a brother, Noah.

But she has a secret. She wants to be a stand-up comedian, but she's pretty sure girls like her - big girls, girls who don't get all the boys, girls who a lot of people don't see - don't belong on stage.

That hasn't stopped her dreaming though, and when the seemingly perfect opportunity to write routines for older, cooler, impossibly funny Leo arises, well, what's a girl to do? But is Leo quite as interested in helping Haylah as he says he is?

Will Haylah ever find the courage to step into the spotlight herself? And when oh when will people stop telling her she's 'funny for a girl'?!

Pretty Funny by Rebecca Elliott (36854826)
Pretty Funny by Rebecca Elliott (36854826)

Adults

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

"Everyone in Shaker Heights was talking about it that summer: how Isabelle, the last of the Richardson children, had finally gone around the bend and burned the house down."

In Shaker Heights, a placid, progressive suburb of Cleveland, everything is meticulously planned - from the layout of the winding roads, to the colours of the houses, to the successful lives its residents will go on to lead. And no one embodies this spirit more than Elena Richardson, whose guiding principle is playing by the rules.

Enter Mia Warren - an enigmatic artist and single mother- who arrives in this idyllic bubble with her teenage daughter Pearl, and rents a house from the Richardsons.

Soon Mia and Pearl become more than just tenants: all four Richardson children are drawn to the mother-daughter pair. But Mia carries with her a mysterious past, and a disregard for the rules that threatens to upend this carefully ordered community.

When old family friends attempt to adopt a Chinese-American baby, a custody battle erupts that dramatically divides the town - and puts Mia and Elena on opposing sides.

Suspicious of Mia and her motives, Elena is determined to uncover the secrets in Mia's past. But her obsession will come at an unexpected and devastating cost.

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng (36854819)
Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng (36854819)

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