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A selection of books especially selected for children in Year 2 (6 - 7 year olds) of average reading ability for the 2019/20 academic year.
If your child is a competent reader or has read all these titles then try the books from the Year 3 list. Alternatively if these books are a little challenging try books from the Year 1 list. Our overall mission is to promote reading for pleasure with quality texts that are perfectly pitched for the age group and the curriculum. We have particularly avoided blockbusters, classic or set texts, known to everyone, so that we can include poetry, stunning information texts and inspirational books in which all children and young people can find themselves reflected.
Thanks to our partnership with Browns Books For Students we are able to offer all the books on this list at an exclusive price.
With wonderful stylish artwork by an artist of rare talent, this book describes through images and enchanting text the many different varieties of dragon and exactly why the different owners love them more than any other. Ranging from a dragon as big as a village to a tiny dragon with whisper-thin wings and finally at the end of the book a page bursting with every dragon in the book.
Highly Commended in the UKLA Book Awards 2019 | Anyone familiar with the story of poor old Humpty Dumpty will be intrigued by Dan Santat’s story of what happens after that fall. In his version the king’s men do manage to put Humpy together again but the cracks are still there, and not just on the outside: a shadow of his former self, Humpty is too afraid to climb back up onto the wall where he used to love to sit and watch the birds. At last though he finds a way to enjoy the skies again and in a surprise ending flies away himself. A powerful story of recovery and overcoming fear this will resonate with all readers. The illustrations are full of clever jokes but portray Humpty’s emotional state perfectly while the sequence that sees him soar away on golden wings is glorious.
October 2018 Book of the Month | A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month November 2018 | Rich in an atmospheric seascape and with a quest at its heart, The Antlered Ship is an engaging and adventurous story that will encourage all children to keep on asking questions about the world they live in. When the beautiful ship with the huge antlers on its prow comes into port Marco the Fox is busy contemplating the mysteries of the world. Marco asks himself questions such as Why do some songs make you happy and others make you sad? Why don’t trees ever talk? and How deep does the sun go when it sinks into the sea? None of his fox friends have any answers. So, when he sees the ship he decides to join the curious crew of deer and pigeons in the hope that a sea voyage to far off lands will help him find the answers. After an eventful journey, Marco discovers that questions often have several answers and that sharing and travelling and living with others can be one way of finding answers.
UKLA Longlist Book Awards - 2019 | Shortlisted for the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal 2019 | Award-winning duo, Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen are beloved for their trade mark dark humour in which nasty things happen and some unexpected results follow. Here, the Mouse is swallowed by the Wolf. But being swallowed by the Wolf turns out not to be such a bad thing after all. The Mouse finds the Duck is already comfortably at home in the Wolf’s stomach and soon the pair are happy improving their dark but cosy home – with the unwitting help of the Wolf. After all, as the Duck says, “I live well. I may have been swallowed, but I have no intention of being eaten.” As ever, Barnett and Klassen amusingly provoke readers to question apparent truths.
Shortlisted for the CLPE Children’s Poetry Award (CLiPPA) 2017 A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month September 2018 | | Michael Rosen is the bestselling author of We're Going on a Bear Hunt, along with many other picture books and collections of poetry. Packed with silly rhymes, witty wordplay and thought-provoking story poems, this new collection of poems will delight children of all ages.
A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month September 2018 | Former Children’s Laureate Chris Riddell weaves a wonderful fantasy adventure around some of the best loved fairy story characters in this hugely attractive and thoroughly entertaining picture story book. Little Green Cape sets out with a handful of useful things including a strong straight stick, comfortable clumpy boots and an invitation to a party. Once in the wild woods she is in a magical world where even the trees have faces, full of surprising characters. There’s a Beast looking for his Beauty, three Bears who are mistrustful of strangers, a talking harp, three little pigs, seven dwarves and many more. Young readers will love both feeling they know the stories being surprised by some of the turns of events.
Rabbit and Bear: Book 3 | Rabbit and Bear, like Claude, are perfect companions for building reading confidence and getting young children hooked into reading. Laugh aloud text and lively illustrations throughout. Gorgeously illustrated and with a classic feel, this is a brilliantly funny story of a rabbit and a bear who discover that things are always better when they're shared with a friend. Ideal for readers moving on from picture books.
Utterly silly, utterly delightful, Read the Book, Lemmings is a picture book in a million. The main characters are Foxy, First Mate on the SS Cliff and three lemmings, eventually named Jumper, Me Too and Ditto. The ship’s laconic captain acts as chorus. Foxy’s book says that contrary to popular belief, lemmings don’t jump off cliffs. Unfortunately, no-one has told the lemmings who merrily and regularly hurl themselves into the sea. If only Foxy can get them to read the book, then he won’t need to keep rescuing them. The deadpan narrative and flat, stylised artwork accentuate the absurdity of the story and the lemmings are irresistible, like small, wilful but lovable toddlers. Stylish and clever this is a picture book that all readers will enjoy.
An empowering and reassuring text about a universal fear, beautifully illustrated by award winning Jon Klassen.
Longlisted for the UKLA Book Awards 2020 | Leonard is not your average lion. He isn’t interested in chomping and crunching other creatures. He likes to stroll, think deep thoughts and write poetry with his friend, Marianne the duck. The fierce lions can’t accept this but Leonard, Marianne and the powerful words encourage them to think differently. This is a book for everyone who wants to live life their own way.
Shortlisted for the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal 2019 | A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month June 2018 | Award-wining Nicola Davies has created a beautiful story which makes its powerful point brilliantly by focusing on the plight of a single child refugee. A little girl’s way of life - one that will be familiar to children around the world - is totally destroyed when the war comes. Having lost everything, alone and facing terrible danger, she travels across the world in search of a new home. But who will help her to find one? Nicola Davies never preaches, instead she allows her story and Rebecca Cobb’s equally sensitive and warm-hearted illustrations to carry the message with their own integrity and eloquence. The book is endorsed by Amnesty International.
UKLA Longlist Book Awards - 2019 | One of Our Books of the Year 2017 | A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month November 2017 Inspired by the birth of his son, award-winning Oliver Jeffers has created a deeply touching introduction to the world as a physical space and also as a place that needs to be treated with great care and respect. Subtitled ‘Notes for Living on Planet Earth’ Jeffers uses richly coloured double page spreads and only a few words of commentary to describe the obvious features of land, sea, night and day but also how time can move both slow and fast and should never be wasted! The perfect gift for all parents to share with their new babies – and each other.
UKLA Longlist Book Awards - 2019 | Some of the world’s most extraordinary animal migrations are detailed in this beautiful book, in short lyrical passages of text and stylish illustrations. From garter snakes, to Emperor penguins and Bar-headed geese, their journeys are brought to life over stunning double-pages, additional notes at the end detailing the exact distances travelled. There’s a map of the world so that you can trace their journeys across the globe and in an important final scene, people of different races are shown at an airport, a reminder that humans too travel many thousands of miles and for lots of different reasons.
Michael Foreman was inspired to create his new picture book on a visit to the Dubai Book Fair, and Jamal the little camel’s journey ends in the shining towers and bright colourful market places of the city. But it begins in the desert as Jamal walks, walks, walks behind his mother and father and their Bedouin owners across the golden sand. There’s drama when a sandstorm blows up and he’s separated from the party, only to be found and saved by the falcon we spotted earlier on the traveller’s fist. This is a book rich in the sights and sensations of a faraway land, beautifully depicted in Michael Foreman’s glorious watercolours. Little Jamal is an irresistible character too, inviting the reader into his world from the first page.
One of our Books of the Year 2016 | A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month October 2016 | There are so many adjectives you could use to describe this book - extraordinary, dazzling, original, funny, irresistible, quirky, imaginative, clever, stunning - but none go far enough. A truly unique work of art, it combines the talents of two superstars of the children's book world into something so simple yet so clever. It is a must for every family to share and will bring a positive glow to each and every reader and listener for no sooner than it pulls at the heart strings it will have you chuckling out loud too. A truly special picture book and a classic in the making.
Double Trouble for Anna Hibiscus is double the fun for readers! Anna’s mum has just given birth to twins and Anna is going to have to share her family with her baby brothers. She immediately starts thinking of them as Double and Trouble, but needn’t worry: her grandma, uncles, aunties and cousins still have time for Anna, and her mother is never too busy for a cuddle. Perfect for big brothers or sisters, this is a really lovely depiction of family life and little Anna is an irresistible character. The setting is contemporary Africa and young readers in this country will be fascinated by Anna’s world, both similar to their own and very different.
Shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal 2014 - One of our Books of the Year 2013 | Possibly destined to be THE TOP PICTURE BOOK of 2013. Bestselling Lemony Snicket gives an original, delightful and empowering take on the familiar theme of being scared of the dark. Laszlo is afraid of the dark. He knows that the dark lives in the same house as him but luckily they don’t usually share the same space in the house. One day, Laszlo goes looking for the dark. It’s a scary journey of discovery. Down in the basement he and the Dark have an interesting conversation; the Dark explains why he is so necessary. It is a great explanation and Laszlo finds he never has to be frightened again. Jon Klassen’s illustrations are a perfect match for this outstanding picture book. This is a stand-out picture book unlike any other this year.
Winner of the 2013 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal | The judges described the book as a "visual treat, full of mood and atmosphere, the beautiful illustrations are full of detail and perfectly in keeping with the story. The use of scale, with the big dog pushing the text off the page, is clever. A timeless, thought-provoking book about facing up to anxiety, fears, and the black dog that visits some of us from time-to-time." This beautifully illustrated edition is now available with an audio cd.
Meet Belka and Strelka, the two dogs who changed the face of space history and became international celebrities in the process! In 1960, two stray dogs were plucked from the streets of Moscow to become space pioneers. This quirky and delightful picture book tells the incredible true story of these heroic strays. Selected from a number of potential canine cosmonauts, Belka and Strelka are put through their paces on the ground, as they practice rocket simulations and wearing spacesuits, before being launched into outer space as the first ever living creatures to successfully orbit the Earth. Miraculously, the dogs survive the mission and upon their return embark on a tour of the USSR, clad in their carefully tailored jumpsuits - one red, one green - becoming international celebrities. As for their legacy, less than a year after their safe return the Soviet space programme felt confident enough to send the first human into space.