Encouraging your kids to read this holiday season is a great way to keep their active minds stimulated and boredom at bay.
We’ve all read the studies that show reading improve children’s imaginations, language and thinking skills. So these school holidays, why not encourage this valuable habit and keep them out of mischief? To help you pick their next favourite series, we teamed up with Berkelouw Books to bring you a list of our favourite reads for children ages 6-12.
Matilda, Roald Dahl $16.98
One of Roald Dahl’s best-loved characters, Matilda, is a special young girl with mean parents and an evil headmistress. When she discovers that she has magical powers she learns to use them to get her revenge. The clever illustrations and humorous storyline make this a great book for readers ages 8 and older. It’s also a classic movie, directed by Danny Devito in 1996 and now a multi award-winning musical composed by Aussie comedian Tim Minchin.
Lulu Bell and the Cubby Fort, Belinda Murell $9.99
Junior readers ready to move up from easier books will enjoy reading about Lulu Bell and her quirky family. They live in Sydney with their two dogs, two cats, ducklings and rabbit. During the holidays Lulu loves visiting her uncle’s farm, jumping in creeks and being a cowgirl. When she sees a calf stuck in the mud, Lulu has to find help before it is too late. For ages 6+.
Alice Miranda at School, Jacqueline Harvey $15.99
A top seller at Berkelouw Books, this series is about the brave and determined seven year old Alice Miranda. She says goodbye to her parents to go to boarding school, fearlessly taking on the unexpected challenges that await her. Suitable for readers ages 9-11.
The Ivory Rose, Belinda Murell $15.99
Part mystery, part fantasy this book is perfect for readers ages 9+. Jemma, a young girl wakes up after a fall to find herself in the year 1895. She cannot return home and becomes a maidservant in a grand mansion. Soon she starts to suspect that the young heiress Georgina is being slowly poisoned. Will Jemma solve the mystery before time runs out?
Seven Little Australians, Ethel Turner $19.98
Set in the 1880s, this highly successful Australian classic is the story of seven mischievous children and their wild adventures. They live with their very strict father, Captain Woolcot and their young stepmother Esther who struggles to control them. Written in a slightly more formal tone than the other books in this list, we recommend this book for readers ages 10-13.
Tom Gates: A Tiny Bit Lucky, Liz Pichon $15.99
Books that use lots of illustrations can help make reading a more exciting activity for reluctant readers. Tom Gates’ observations from school and his daily life are presented as doodles and scribbles in his exercise book. Easy to read and very funny, this book is recommended for readers ages 7-10.
13 Story Treehouse, Andy Griffith $24.95
Andy and Terry live in a 13 storey treehouse where anything can and does happen. Their tree house has a bowling alley, a tank full of sharks, self-making beds and a secret underground lab. The story is hilarious and is full of illustrations so it’s another good choice for reluctant readers.
Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Ugly Truth, Jeff Kinney $14.95
Watching a movie that’s based on a book is another way to make reading more fun. In the case of “Diary of a Wimpy Kid”, 3 movies have been made from this blockbuster comic-style series by Jeff Kinney. In this book, Greg, who often has trouble fitting in has to deal with boy-girl parties along with other awkward aspects of growing up without the help of his best friend Rowley.
Kensington Reptilarium, N.J. Gemmell $16.98
Four children from the Australian outback find themselves in London for Christmas. Their eccentric guardian, Uncle Basti, hates children and shares his terrace house with hundreds of snakes. Highly recommended by the team at Berkelouw and described as ‘fun and fabulous’ this book will suit children ages 10-12.
The Love Oracles, Book 1: Nymph, Tonya Alexandra $19.95
Teen readers looking for a fantasy and romance novel will be drawn into the mythical world of Merope, a beautiful star nymph who is banished to earth. She tries to lead a normal life but finds herself falling in love with Lukas, an ordinary boy, incurring the wrath of Zeus. Suitable for readers ages 12-14, Nymph is the first book of this trilogy.
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