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Jonathan Meres was born in Nottingham and spent many years sailing the seven seas as a merchant seaman. He gave it up to be a rock star but ended up being an ice cream van driver and comedian instead. As a comedian he won the Time Out award and in the '90s was nominated for the Perrier Award at the Edinburgh Festival. As a writer he is best known for being the author of over 30 books for children and in particular his bestselling, award-winning series, The World Of Norm, with over 800,000 copies sold in UK. He has also been a World Book Day Author. Jonathan lives in Edinburgh with his wife and children.
Interest Age 8+ Reading Age 8 | There’s a very high level of cuteness in this book, in the shape of Noodle, the excitable but lovable little dog who becomes a special member of Wigley Primary. The children of Mr Reed’s class can hardly believe their luck when he’s introduced and his exploits certainly liven up the school day, not to mention their trip to the seaside. It’s not just that Doodle brings fun and silliness though, his presence helps Lou feel more confident, and brings all the children of the class together. Jonathan Meres clearly understands children as well as he understands dogs (Noodle is based on his own dog), and young readers will very much enjoy sharing Noodle’s adventures. Published by dyslexia specialists Barrington Stoke this is super readable and Noodle will be everyone’s friend.
Interest Age 5-8 | There’s poignancy as well as humour in this new story from Jonathan Meres. Young Frank is desperate for a new bike, but he knows that money doesn’t grow on trees, so when his big sister offers to pay him to help with her paper round, he agrees. Despite the 6.00am starts, it’s actually good fun and both Frank and Lottie are excited when they make friends with an old lady as they deliver papers to her care home. Their friendship proves very important as the story reaches its end. There’s lots to enjoy here, the story is short but very rewarding and Meres’ understanding of his readers is spot on.
Interest Age 5-8 | Priya and her grandma swap jokes, stories and memories over ice-cream at the market café. Priya’s parents have a stall at the market and she loves it there, roaming round on her own or with her friends, checking out the displays on the other stalls and sharing the news with her Nana-ji. Her parents are despondent when a new pet stall opens, it’s competition for their own, and they’re even more worried when they hear of a new retail park, but Nana-ji has seen it all before and is totally relaxed: everything will be fine. This funny, gentle, reassuring story is a lovely tribute to age and experience, and to the special relationship between child and grandparent. Lovely to read it’s lovely to look at too, filled with Hannah Coulson’s warm, lively illustrations. High quality cream paper and a special easy to read font ensure a smooth read for all.
Interest Age 9+ Reading Age 9 | In a nutshell: it’s only a rock’n’roll story but we like it! Part of dyslexia and reluctant reader specialist Barrington Stoke’s ‘super readable’ collection, Jonathan Mere’s novel will hit all the right notes with readers, male ones in particular. A meeting with this friend’s cool big brother Nigel (named after the XTC song) changes Darren’s life: he determines to become the best guitar player ever, just as soon as he’s persuaded his parents to buy him a guitar. Meres gives almost-eleven-year old Darren a very authentic voice, and his diary extracts are broken up at regular intervals by lists and fun facts, making this very accessible. A fun and satisfying story to make reading rock! ~ Andrea Reece Barrington Stoke is the foremost publisher of dyslexia friendly books and those for reluctant readers. Here on Lovereading4kids we are constantly selecting new titles and refreshing our special dyslexia friendly category. Click here to view our current selection which is broken down by age range.
One of our Super Readable Books of the Year 2016 | Interest Age 8-12 Reading Age 8 | In a nutshell: funny story of football, fandom and fame | George is over the moon when she finds out her favourite footballer Dean Johnson has moved into the massive mansion in her home town, and even more excited when she actually meets him. He seems really nice, but that’s not what the papers say: has he invited her to the cup final to talk football, or just to exploit a PR opportunity? A different take on the football story, this is fun and easy to read, and the banter between George and her mates is top division stuff. ~ Andrea Reece Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant and dyslexic readers aged 8+ Barrington Stoke is the foremost publisher of dyslexia friendly books and those for reluctant readers. Here on Lovereading4kids we are constantly selecting new titles and refreshing our special dyslexia friendly category. Click here to view our current selection which is broken down by age range.
One of our Books of the Year 2016 | September 2016 Book of the Month | In a Nutshell: Grandparents | Fun | Poignant | Interest Age 5-8 Best known for his hilarious World of Norm books, Jonathan Meres has here written a very different sort of book. Grandpa was an Astronaut is full of fun, indeed, it has a real sense of joy, but it’s also poignant. Grandparents take centre stage in this charming tale as a young boy and his grandfather let their imaginations take flight for an afternoon of space exploration. What Sherman likes to do best is gaze at the moon and play with his grandpa. After an afternoon doing just that, he goes home very happy, particularly when Grandpa gives him his special piece of moon rock. Grown-up readers will appreciate Grandpa’s comment that he’s waning as Sherman is waxing, and his gift suddenly takes on new meaning; young readers will mainly remember the fun - and Grandpa’s jokes. The story is told simply but very effectively and lively colour illustrations by Hannah Coulson make it lovely to look at too. ~ Andrea Reece About the Little Gems series: Little Gems are in a gorgeous new chunky format, with high-spec production including coloured endpapers and jacketed flaps with activities. Additional features include high quality cream paper, Barrington Stoke font and illustrations on every page. They are perfect for 5-8's. These quality stories promote good reading practice for all newly independent readers.
Shortlisted for The Red House Children’s Book Award 2012. The everyday becomes ridiculous in this hilarious story of Norm’s life – as seen through his own unusual and somewhat biased eyes! Norm’s life seems to have gone badly wrong and it is all his parents’ fault. Why did they decide to move? How Norm gets through the ups and many downs of his life is a rollercoaster of laughs. If you like the Wimpy Kid books, you'll love The World of Norm !
An entertaining introduction into some big words and what they mean. The approach is refreshing as there is no usual logic to the book, apart from the fact that words are listed alphabetically. Learning the meanings, usage and opposites of anything from Abashed to Zenith is both useful and fun.