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One of the most magical things you can instill in children is a love of reading.
So whether you’re looking for a little something extra to put in their Christmas stockings, or just a few good reads to help with keeping kids busy over the festive holidays, here’s our pick of the best children’s books 2017 has had to offer.
Once you’ve had enough of all the indoor fun for kids and adults alike, and you’re looking for some quiet time, there’s nothing better than snuggling up with a good book.
And take it from us, they will be engaged and inspired by some of the varied offerings released in the last 12 months. You need look no further for indoor kids activities during the cold winter months, if they are engrossed in a good story.
Here are some of our best picks for each age group.
Katinka’s Tail by Judith Kerr (HarperCollins)
From the creator of Mog and The Tiger Who Came to Tea, this feline adventure features the snow-white Katinka – a perfectly ordinary cat but with a less-than-ordinary tail. Parents will find this a charming read, and it will thrill toddlers. Another classic in the making.
One Christmas Wish by Katherine Rundell (Bloomsbury)
A witty story of lonely boy Theo, who is left at home with a babysitter and wishes on a star for some friends to keep him company. Four mischievous tree decorations suddenly come to life and wreak havoc. This fun and humorous tale is complemented by beautiful illustrations. An easy and enjoyable read, great for educating your children and entertaining them at the same time.
Illegal by Eoin Colfer and Andrew Donkin (Hodder)
An arresting graphic novel featuring 12-year-old Ebo’s journey from his village in north Africa, following in his siblings’ wake, to a dangerous Mediterranean crossing. Full of contrasts, it tells the stories behind the blunt headline statistics of refugees, with cold sea and scorching desert, small kindnesses and casual cruelty, hope and sorrow. One to really get youngsters thinking.
Satellite by Nick Lake (Hodder)
Leo was born in space, living all his life on space station Moon 2 with twins Orion and Libra. At 15, he is due to go to Earth for the first time, but more awaits him there than his grandfather’s ranch and the experiences he has been promising himself. The home he and his fellow space children long for is less than welcoming. This is extraordinary science fiction, both diverse and humane, exploring the idea of belonging, and feeling “alien” in your own surroundings.
Indigo Donut by Patrice Lawrence (Hodder)
Indigo is 17 and has grown up in the care system. Her latest foster home is safe and loving, but school is a nest of teenage vipers, which is almost unbearable until Bailey becomes Indigo’s protector. Throw in a letter from Indigo’s late grandmother imploring the girl to forgive her father (who she believes killed her mother), the existence of a long-lost sister and a homeless man with a backstory and this is a mystery sure to have every teenager gripped from the first page to the last.
These are just a few ideas to inspire your little readers. There's a world of imagination out there just waiting to be explored!