Our Good Reads were chosen by young people at Saint Wilfrid’s C of E Academy in Blackburn. Thanks to the pupils and to Learning Resources Centre Manager Emma Suffield. Emma was named School Librarian of the Year 2018 by the SLA. Her innovative, imaginative work has led to a 450% increase in book borrowing rates since she became responsible for the library in 2014.
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
JK Rowling, Bloomsbury, 978-1408855676, £7.99 pbk
This book has a super exciting story with twists and turns at every page. Everything you think you know about the book is completely changed towards the end. J.K Rowling has a magical way of writing in which the characters truly jump off the page. You feel sad at the deaths and rejoice at the marriages. One of my favourite characters is also introduced in this book, making it even more special!
Reviewed by Phoebe
Road to Perdition
Max Allan Collins, Brash Books, 978-1941298961, £12.29
Road to Perdition is a graphic novel published by DC Comics (the guys behind Superman and Batman) and written by Max Allan Collins. It is often considered one of the most influential graphic novels in history, and you can see why.
The black and white art style reflects its film noir influences, and the book features some of the greatest and most detailed art in any comic book I’ve read.
The story follows Michael O’Sullivan, a hitman working for a mob boss, and Michael’s son, Michael Jr. After his wife and his other son are killed, he goes on a killing spree to avenge them.
The action scenes in this book are fast paced and stylish, and the dialogue between characters is memorable. I can’t say much more, so I don’t spoil things, but seriously, seek out this book and give it a read.
Reviewed by Hashim
Murder Most Unladylike
Robin Stevens, Puffin, 978-0141369761, £6.99 pbk
Having been emphatically recommended by a number of student librarians and Miss Suffield herself, I felt it was about time I embarked upon the first book in Robin Steven’s series – and I am extremely grateful! These books follow the (mis)adventures of the Honorable Daisy Wells and Hazel Wong as they attend Deepdean School for Girls, creating the Detective Society in the process.
Within Murder Most Unladylike, the first book, Daisy and Hazel are just beginning their secret society when they discover the body of their teacher. As you would expect from the title, the girls absolutely do not behave in the ladylike manner expected of them, and instead attempt to solve the mystery themselves. While this series is really intended for younger readers, it holds appeal for all ages as the darker secrets of each teacher begin to unravel, revealing a cleverly written plot sure to keep every reader enthralled.
Reviewed by Sarah
Here, there be Dragons
James A. Owen, Simon and Schuster, 978-1416932499, £10.99
This is a great fantasy and adventure series. It is a six book series and the first book is called Here, There be Dragons. It is about a group of three friends called John, who is the leader, Jack and Charles. They all go to Oxford University and all have a scholarship. Then one day John’s Mentor Professor Sigurdsson is killed for no apparent reason. They now have to protect this imaginary world called the Archipelago of Dreams by protecting this book called the Imaginarium Geographica. They are now called the Caretakers of the Imaginarium Geographica. It uses people who have once been alive which make you think that the Archipelago of Dreams is real and that this book is a fiction book when it is in fact a non-fiction book.
Reviewed by James
Alex and Eliza
Melissa De La Cruz, Macmillan Children’s Books, 978-1509869978, £7.99 pbk
This book is a historical romance novel based on the real love story of the revolutionary Alexander Hamilton and the daughter of a rich and powerful senator, Elizabeth Schuyler. Alexander was impoverished and orphaned when he was young but has now worked his way up to working closely with one of the most influential people in 18th century America: George Washington. Eliza on the other hand is descended from one of the wealthiest bloodlines in the country and is intrigued about the American Revolution which Alex is a part of. When they meet during a ball in late 1777, a love story begins, one that changed America’s history. This book is full of unexpected surprises as well as fully explored and developed characters. It allows the readers to imagine just how that winter ball in Albany changed their lives and American history forever.
Reviewed by Lula
Terry Moore, Abstract Studio, 978-1892597489,
The graphic novel series Echo by Terry Moore is an excellent read for teens and upwards. It has a well-written, sci-fi plot offering great action sequences and intriguing mysteries that constantly keeps the reader hooked throughout. Terry Moore writes each character perfectly developing each one from a one dimensional robot into a complex character with morals and ideals. You get to see how the lives of seemingly disconnected people intertwine together in interesting ways. Not only is the story good, but the art is incredibly beautiful and detailed. It is drawn simplistically in black and white but it is made up for, in the incredible amounts of details fitted into the small panels. Unfortunately, there are some scenes with a lot of intense gore. However, I believe that it is still one of the best indie graphic novels that you can pick up.
Reviewed by Kai