Recommended Reads

“We shouldn’t teach great books; we should teach a love of reading.”

It’s easy to forget this amongst all the AOs…..Post your recommendations. What have you been reading? Nietzsche? Tolstoy? Heat magazine? Cornflake box? Other?


94 Responses to Recommended Reads

  1. Miss Morgan says:

    I have been reading ‘The Help’ by Kathryn Stockett. Reading is an absolute luxury and a rare treat in a house filled with the joyous demands of two toddlers. This book was well worth the late night reading when the peace finally decends. Loved it.

  2. Dr Little says:

    Scientists can read too! My first foray into the blogosphere. I have run out of books. Read 29 pages of the girl with the dragon tattoo, and don’t think it’s my thing – should I persevere? I have gone back to comfort re-reading Angela Carter’s Nights at the Circus. Love a bit of magical realism, me.

    • Georgina Welsh says:

      Yeah, I couldn’t get into ‘The Girl with the Dragon Tatoo’ either! I think it’s the massively long and complicated political introduction. I’ve heard that it improves afterwards haha! Just watch the film!

    • Miss Mckee says:

      READ IT!!! Awesome book. Read the trilogy and was incrediably sad that i had finished them, and that the author had died because thats sad anyway, but it also meant no more books to come!

    • Cecily Haywood says:

      I think those books should be BANNED! What is it with the Scandinavians’ morbid fascination with torture and rape?! It’s like a violent version of all those ‘Don’t Tell Mummy’ books.

    • Mr Cooper (ICT) says:

      I’m almost finshed with ‘Hornet’s Nest (the last of the trilogy) and it’s ok, but the situations are a little contrived and I found the characters a little two-dimensiononal. Maybe things were lost in translation?
      Having said that it is a nice read that doesn’t require too much concentration!

  3. Miss Tucker says:

    I will add to the myth that Scientists read too! I struggled with the girl with the dragon tattoo and the hornets nest. Was relieved when films came out, well worth a watch. Distinct lack of perseverence! Can’t remember what I’m reading, not good with names, people etc in life in general!!! Will update when I get home 🙂

    • Miss Brown says:

      I have read the Stieg Karsson trilogy and loved them, a good easy holiday read. I’m reading several things at the moment, a James Patterson novel called Private which is a holiday leftover, Breakfast at Tiffany’s by Truman Capote, back issues of the Sunday Times magazine I find in the bathroom and Farmhouse Cookery (Readers Digest). (I like to have something to read in whichever room I am in at home!) I would recommend that you read whatever suits your mood!

    • Miss Tucker says:

      Eventually updating.
      A great read if you are into thrillers. Full of twists and turns, nail biting, great plot, great characters and action. A bit graphic in terms of murders etc so not for the faint hearted or easily disturbed!!
      The Last 10 Seconds – Simon Kernick
      On a similar line – Mark Billinghurst – Scardy Cat

      • M Barnett says:

        I have also read a few Mark Billington – he is quite dark! but the plots are clever – the first I read was Sleepyhead which was good. I think it was Lifeless that was quite twisted but kept me reading!

  4. Jackie Hilton says:

    During the summer I read a couple of instantly forgettable books but really enjoyed ‘An American Wife’ by Curtis Sittenfield which is fiction loosely based on the life of Laura Bush but don’t let that put you off! I would look for other books by this author.
    Jackie Hilton

  5. Miss Reading says:

    Reading is my passion, standing cooking tea and propping up a hard back book is now a talent that I have mastered! Anything at all will do. I am currently engrossed in Dean Koontz’s Frankenstein series. On book five and all I can say is WOW!

  6. Miss Harding says:

    World War Z by Max Brooks. The story of the events that happened after the zombie apocalypse. It is brilliant! Read it before the film comes out.

    • SarahHawkins says:

      Love this one! Anything slightly gory or thrillerish has me indulged though… Could not put this one down however. As The World Dies: The First Days: A Zombie Trilogy is an amazing zombie reads!

  7. Dena Bahiraey says:

    To me, reading a book allows you to live different lifestyles and gain experiences similar to those that you can gain in real life- it lets your curiosities, dreams or desires become real! You share joy in marriages, despair in the page-turning climaxes and sympathise with sorrow…a personal application of the beauty and difficulties of life. I have been reading, ‘Emma’: none other than by the mistress of romantic fiction, Jane Austen! I was led to read this after studying Pride and Prejudice last year and I can’t get enough of her now 🙂

  8. Miss C Taylor says:

    I am currently racing through the Stieg Karsson trilogy…… I admit, the first novel is SLOW to start with but totally gripping as it progresses. I am not normally a fan of popular thrillers, but these books are really addictive and a great break from the heavier stuff I read.
    “The Help” is another good popular read that has been made into a film, as is “One Day” which made me laugh and cry several times…..(apart from Anne Hathaway’s schizophrenic accent, the film is a really good adaptation of the book.) My favourite book of all time has to be “Wild Swans”. This book really opened my eyes – as did “A Thousand Splendid Suns” . I’ll post more recommendations (both high and low brow) as I go 🙂 Would be great to hear what some of the pupils are reading……

    • Mrs Doran says:

      I read Wild Swans a few yars ago now, and it really opened my eyes! it’s an education for those , like me, who know nothing about China and its traumas throughthe 20th century; I was shocked and enthralled.
      It reads like a novel much of the time, despite being biography/ auotobiog.
      i would definitely recommend it – especiallu if you tend to feel a bit put out about the state of our country and the conditions that we women labour under in this new century!

      I loved ‘A thousand Splendid Suns’ too – again, it opened my eyes to a world I really knew nothing about – and made me cry.

      • Alex Snell says:

        Out of interest, Miss Taylor, have you read any other David Nicholls books? I enjoyed One Day a lot, but I have heard that Starter for Ten is better! I was wondering if you had read it?

  9. Miss Chinner says:

    I should start by saying that as a biologist my normal reading is limited to the new scientist delights of ‘what eats wasps’, ‘why can’t elephants jump’ and ‘do polar bears get lonely’. However I have recently got my hands on The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster, which was read to me by my junior school teacher and I am absolutely loving it.

  10. Criddle says:

    I have recently read “The Beautiful and Damned” by F.Scott so if you liked Gatsby you’ll LOVE this! Its quite long but worth the read with the usual destructive themes from F.Scott and quite a lot of drunk humour! 🙂

    • Mrs Morgan says:

      Try F.Scott’s “Tender Is The Night” – still the destructive themes such as the disintegration of marriage and morality but with a touch of French Riviera glamour!

  11. Alex Snell says:

    I have yet to rekindle my relationship with Jane Austen – depsite my grade of AS Level English, I still cannot bring myself to pick up the copy of Sense and Sensibility that I have loaned and renewed from the library for some time now. I also agree with Mrs Taylor on the matter of thinking that “One Day” is a wonderful book; I feel that the film was one that actually did the book justice (as the author of the book wrote the screenplay for the film, so this possibly helped!), yet I did find Anne Hathaway’s accent offensive.
    A book that I would recommend is “When God was a Rabbit” by Sarah Winman. Despite intially thinking that the title insinuated that a rabbit created the universe and all things beyond, I decided to give the book a chance due to it’s reviews. It didn’t hesitate on starting the book with relatively shocking themes…the book is like a modern day To Kill A Mockingbird.

  12. Kate Ferguson says:

    I’d really recommend Ian McEwan because I think he’s one of those people who are just born to write. I’ve yet to read the most obvious one, ‘Atonement’, but I thought ‘A Child in Time’ and ‘Enduring Love’ were just so beautifully written. Don’t read the former if you don’t want to cry! I think McEwan is really good at balancing the emotional and the intellectual when he’s describing his characters’ lives (that’s more applicable to ‘A Child in Time’).

    • Mrs Taylor says:

      Kate, Ian McEwan is my favourite author – Atonement my favourite of his novels. I went to see him speak at the Hay-on-Wye Literary Festival and managed to secure his autograph at the end! What a guy! The festival takes place for a week at the end of May and I would highly recommend attending – you buy tickets for individual events rather than a ‘week long ticket’ so you can put together your own programme- it’s fantastic! Every time I am tempted to leave Reuben in the car while I dash to the cashpoint at Morrisons I remember reading A Child in Time…. If you want to be shocked, try ‘First Love,Last Rites’ and ‘The Cement Garden’ – you have been warned!

    • Mrs Morgan says:

      ‘A Child in Time’ is one of my all time favourites – it was one of the first texts I taught for A level. The opening chapter still makes me cry – even more so now that I have a child of my own.

  13. Mrs Barnett says:

    Hello- never “blogged before” (and had to have help!) but I love reading most things. have never attempted the Girl with books but love anything by Kate Atkinson! Ignore the TV series and read the 4 Case histories saga, she has so much wit. I also enjoyed in the summer “The Privacy of Maxwell Sim by Johnathan Coe – I like his books but maybe I’m biased as he writes about my home town of Birmingham!
    Can I put in a plea about the name! “babes” – was Emmeline Pankhursts work in vain???

    • Kate Ferguson says:

      Of course her work wasn’t in vain Miss! The name ‘babes’ represents a celebration of all the girls’ intellectual beauty and femininity, and we are far from using it in the objectifying sense because we are all appreciating each other’s ‘babeness’, whilst proving that we are intellectual equals. 🙂

      • Mrs Taylor says:

        thank you Kate – Dr of babeology

      • Mra M Barnett says:

        Kate, I have now been educated by Year 13 and apparently babe has been reclaimed and is not derogatory but is a term of respect and endearment that can be used by both men and women. Clearly I am out of date and will endeavor to embrace this!
        I also like Ian McEwan – I dont always find him the easiest read but its worth it. i liked Enduring Love and Atonement but I would take Mrs Taylor’s warning on the Cement Garden – much too weird for me! I also liked Solar and I did not think I would.

  14. csalkeld01 says:

    Brilliant to follow such a recommendation, Dena- if you loved ‘Mockingbird’, you might like ‘The Divine Secrets of the ya-ya sisterhood’. This is set in the same era & the American Deep South but is about rich white women & their families. After it came a prequel ‘Little Red Altars’, both (obviously!) by Rebecca Wells & both in the school library.
    My secret reading vice has been racing through books about a New Jersey female Private Detective called Stephanie Plum-written by Janet Evanovitch & very funny & more than a bit rude. Mrs.Taylor put me onto these & I hold her entirely responsible for the insomnia induced by this page-turning series- I’ve got up to the 15th & again, they are all in the library, though Mrs. Key AND Mrs. Roberts may fight you for the more recent additions.

    • Mrs Taylor says:

      Ranger or Morelli? Ranger for me!

      Everyone on the course should try ‘One for the Money’ – am keen to set up a Stephanie Plum fan club if anyone’s interested!!

  15. Mrs Doran says:

    I have to read so much as part of my job and so much that I feel I should read, but when I have a completely free choice I love to read historical novels – good ones of course! My favourite of all time is ‘The Sunne In Splendour’ by Sharon K Penman, which tells the story of Richard III from early childhood to his ignominious death on the battlefield at Bosworth. Although I knew what happened to him, as I approached the end, it was so well written that I had completely identified with the character of Richard and was desperate for it to be different, beacause I wanted him to be OK and I wanted the story to go on.
    I have now read nearly all Penman’s books and they are are all just as gripping.
    The historical knowledge that I have gained from reading books like this has informed my appreciation of literature and given me a clear and sequential picture of the last millenium. Believe it or not, this has been VERY useful over the years!

  16. Maisie says:

    I am currently reading the book Belle by Lesley Pearce.
    “Fifteen year-old Belle has lived in a brothel in Seven Dials all her life, with no understanding of what happens in the rooms upstairs. But her innocence is shattered when she witnesses the murder of one of the girls and, subsequently snatched from the streets by the killer, she is sold into prostitution in Paris.”
    I have been immersed in the story of Belle. The story follows Belle’s tragic journey, from the slums of Seven Dials in London to New Orleans via Paris with each character and place described beautifully. Lesley Pearse presents Belle as a strong heroine struggling through difficult circumstances. The horror and violence surrounding the abduction of young girls to satisfy the urges of older, wealthy men is not hidden yet described fully. There are shocking scenes involving these dirty men but also women in which they think nothing of selling a young girl in order to make more money for themselves. I felt myself physically willing Belle to come through the dangers she encountered. A highly recommended read.

  17. Georgina Beechey says:

    Okay, I do believe that my reading tastes are more *cough cough* teenish, just bordering on proper reads! For example whenever someone is looking for a book I’ll always say, “oh yeah, take out The Amulet of Samarkand by Johnathan Stroud, it’s pretty good” Bear in mind I read it when i was about 13. Although there are books by Dorothy Koomson and Adele Parks that would appeal to most people!

    • Vivien Goddard-Stephens says:

      I second The Amulet of Samarkand! The follow on was a bit of a let down, but the follow on to the follow on, Ptolemy’s Gate, definitely worth a read.

  18. Mrs. Wiltshire says:

    I’ve also read the Stieg Larsson trilogy recent (on my iPad, I might add – and didn’t have to bend back the page to remind where I was – it just reappeared each time by magic!!), so keep at it Dr. Little, it’ll be worth it! However the stories are so interlaced that it’s better to read them in order, which I didn’t do, of course – The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, then The Girl Who Played with Fire, and finally the Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest. It’s interesting to note how much of Swedish society is reflected in the books and Larsson’s ‘take’ on that society. I loved how the anti-heroine who is also a computer whizz-kid and hacker, ran rings round all the others who were totally mystified at how easily she was able to hack into their computers.

    Now back to my old favourite, Robert Goddard – I’ve cleaned out all the Goddard books I’ve not read from the Amazon Kindle store and am looking forward to reading these at the touch of a button. I can hear the howls of protest from the purists, but I do still have paperbacks too if the battery every runs out!!

  19. Emily McEleny says:

    I’ve just finished Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro, which I started reading to potentially write about in the coursework. The book was really easy to get into, which was good- it has a theme of dystopia that I found really shocking and tragic, which runs parallel to the love story of two of the main characters. Some of the ideas are quite disturbing, but following the story of the characters’ struggle to be together is completely gripping- it also links really well to The Handmaid’s Tale!

    • Mrs Doran says:

      I read this over the summer too. I saw the film first, which is probably the best way round as my viewing wasn’t disturbed by directorial interpretations clashing with my own. I thought it was pretty faithful to the novel, actually.
      Ishiguro’s creation of dystopia is so understated it’s easy to start to accept that this is ‘normality’ and the euphemistically used words such as ‘donations’ and ‘completion’ are terrifying in their simplicity.
      I would definitely recommend this as aUnit 4 text; it’s easy to read but with a great deal of depth both in content and structure/style, and it goes very well with ‘The Handmaid’s Tale.

  20. Georgina Welsh says:

    If you’re looking at Dystopian fiction, DON’T read ‘The Chrysalids’ by John Wyndham! Snore. But ‘The Road’ by Cormac McCarthy is pretty good 🙂

  21. Vivien Goddard-Stephens says:

    Margaret Atwood – Oryx and Crake. Forget Jane Austin and Tom Hardy, this book is where it’s at!

  22. Alex Snell says:

    I have a few more book recommendations!
    First of all, “Room” by Emma Donoghue was one I was going to put alongside The Handmaid’s Tale in an effort to write my coursework on the idea of confinement. I couldn’t finish it, because it was very difficult for me to read, not because of the way it was written, because it got to the point where I figured out what was going to happen – I can read about Dobby dying, but I can’t read about people being abused! Therefore, I Wikipediaed the end (something that I am not proud of, may I add) and I am glad that I did; what was on Wikipedia alone made me cry for the poor boy. However, if you have a different mindset to me and don’t have nightmares about baby Jack, then go ahead! 🙂
    My favourite book of all time is The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. It is written by death and set in the second world war – my favourite two subjects mixed together in a book, how could I not like it?! It is one of those books where when you read it, you truly feel like you have lost a friend, or several in fact, as I grew very attached to Rudy and Max as much as Liesel and Death (who, as a side note, is incredibly witty for someone with such a sombre job.) Also, The Perks of Being A Wallflower is a lovely book, which encapsulates the trials and tribulations of growing up! Have a lovely rest of the weekend everyone 🙂

    • Miss Brown says:

      On Chesil Beach by McEwan is a fine novel Kate and I agree with you Georgina about Enduring Love the film! And yes Mrs Taylor, I agree that A Child in Time impacts on you as a parent.

  23. SarahHawkins says:

    For any ancient history lovers, I strongly suggest Roma! I was recommended it by my classics teacher in Classical Civillisation and I couldn’t put it down! It takes you through the time of the monarchy, to the republic to the empire. I seriously couldn’t put it down for one moment! It’s full of blackmail, murder, sex, tragedy and everything a girl loves to find in a novel! Another one would be Priestess of the White. It’s also based on the god likes fantasy genres, and like Roma, a very large novel! Those two are definitely reccomended reads for this week 😀 xx

  24. Sophie Borbon says:

    My recommended read has to be No time for goodbye by Linwood Barclay. If youre not into all the girly lovely dovely books this terrifying and extremely puzzling book will have you on the edge of your seat! Its certainly a book which once i started reading i couldnt put down, as i completely immersed myself in the intoxicating plot line of the story. So basically read it, its brilliant! It may leave you questioning your familes secrets though… 🙂

  25. Dr Little says:

    Finished “Nights at the Circus” at the weekend and had reminded myself that I didn’t like it as much as “Wise Children” (Both Angela Carter). Wise children is full of twins and lots of Shakespearian allusions in a theatrical dynasty, and lots of fun.
    As a suggestion to all you sixth form fantasists (?) has anyone read Gormenghast? Its in the library, looks like a brick and is one of the few books I’ve stayed up in to the wee small hours to finish. I got the first book in a book swap in Pushkar, India, and the whole otherworldliness of india went brilliantly with the slightly distorted reality of Gormenghast. I love the characters – Steerpike, Fuschia, Flay, Swelter the cook – and it makes hogwarts look like a pale imitation. By the third book it all gets a bit weird – I think he had PTS after his work as a war artist…
    And I don’t do fantasy.

    • Kate Ferguson says:

      I’m currently reading ‘The Magic Toyshop’ by Angela Carter, and I’m so glad I came across her because I think she’s a superb writer. I love all the magic and symbolism behind everything, and it’s interesting to see the protagonist’s confusion and fears as she matures, and also the mixture of intrigue and disgust she feels for men and boys, as she’s only fifteen. If you liked the other Angela Carter novels, I’d definitely recommend it. I’ve yet to read any of her other books but from what you’re saying I think ‘Wise Children’ is going to be my next one!

  26. Issy Cox says:

    No idea if I’m posting right, can’t quite figure out this blogging thing! BUT (assuming this will work) I have some recommendations 🙂 one of my absolute favourite writers is Haruki Murakami. He’s a Japanese fella but all his work is available in english. Try ‘Kafka on the shore’ which is AMAZING, if you want a crazy weird beautifully written escapist novel, or ‘Sputnik Sweetheart’ which is just beautiful or ‘Norwegian Wood’ which, in my opinion, is as vital as Wuthering Heights or Catcher in the Rye for adolescent development! Just try him! Some of his books take a couple of reads to fully understand, because his ideas are just so abstract and insane, but his writing is so poetic, and some parts are so poignant or profound that certain sentences will stick with you forever. Sorry for the essay, enjoy! Reading his book ‘The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle’ at the moment, will let y’all know.

  27. SarahHawkins says:

    Has anyone read Rage? Seriously recommend, can’t really say anything more than Wilbur Smith is amazing.

  28. Lauren Hayward says:

    “Love Story” by Erich Segal. Five words – could not put it down. A very short book (133 pages) so read it in one go and cried from the first page to the last. Would recommend it to anyone who loves a romantic, touching and funny book. I would love to explore more of Segal’s work, any recommendations? Oh, and wondering if anyone’s read this book and seen the film version? If the movie is more of a tear jerker than the book, warn me now!

  29. Natalie says:

    Just because I haven’t yet, i thought i’d post something, but this will only highlight the fact i’m a miserable person. I pretty much only read Harry Potter, Twilight and anything by Stephen King. His short stories are pretty awesome mostly because it doesn’t take up ALL of my time reading it. I’ve read Shawshank Redemption which is just as good as the film (and that film is like the best film in the whole entire world of films), the Mangler, which i read when i was babysitting in the dark – fairly scary (it’s about an Ironing and folding machine that goes mad and kills people – fantastic way to get out of doing any ironing for a while). I also read 1408, which while it is an amazing film that i could only watch in the day time cos it was scary – the book is TERRIBLE! (I think its cos i watched the film then had mega expectations of the book) But children of the corn is really good, i think, i only got half way through it was too scary. They’re all in a book called Stephen King at the movies. Now i’m trying to read Under The Dome (again, by Stephen King) 950+ pages, wish me luck!

  30. Mr Medd says:

    What a great blog Mrs Taylor! As a former Spanish teacher I would recommend ‘Love in the time of Cholera’ by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. It is set in South America and is a love story. It is funny, sad, lyrical, evocative, touching…I could go on. It is also a gentle introduction into the world of ‘magic realism’ where the writer asks the reader to suspend their disbelief when they pick up the book, just as Cervantes did all those years ago!

  31. Dena Bahiraey says:

    I loved studying to Kill a Mockingbird, Mrs. Salkeld: I really wish we could re-visit it again at A-level! I will definitely take a look into your recommended read, as I have become more interested in learning about America and the deep south in History and Politics!

  32. Aimee Pascoe says:

    I know I have already mentioned it in the ‘What have you been watching, reading, listening to’ post however I feel it should be recognised here too!!
    The Woman in Black by Susan Hill is literally amazing. It starts a little slowly but if you stick with it you will not regret it. Its quite scary which is always fun as dont really read..or watch much horror. Can’t wait for the film now!!

  33. Alex Snell says:

    This suggestion is hardly something that could be called a “novel”, but I must recommend a quaint little book called “Keep Calm at Christmas”! It is full of lovely and funny quotes that people have said about Christmas and the time surrounding it, and it makes any dark day a little brighter!

  34. Mr Cooper says:

    I’ve just finished Stephen King’s new one – 11/22/63 which was a very satisfying read and quite thought provoking too, and I’m now ploughing through a couple of SF short story anthologies, and hoping the man with the beard and the red hat will drop something interesting my way on the 25th.

  35. Kate Ferguson says:

    I just read ‘The Secret Life of Bees’ by Sue Monk Kidd. REALLY recommend. It’s really gripping and heart-warming, with some really beautiful descriptive passages. It reminds me of TKAM, and the film ‘The Color Purple’ (I’ve yet to read the book) because of when it was set and the theme of racism, but it’s still original in its own right and it’s just a lovely book 🙂

    • Freya T-H says:

      I love that book it’s one of my favourites, the film’s pretty fab too but the book’s definitely better. I first read it when I was twelve and must have read it four or five times since. Love the boy, especially

  36. Upha Barclay says:

    I recommended one book; it’s not a story book but it’s non-fiction. ‘Address to impress’ it’s a book about 200 hundred words you should know. This way you can impress your friends with your tecknical language. eg mitigate[mit-i-gayt]look it up if you don’t know what it means.

  37. Mrs Taylor says:

    Thanks, Upha, for your suggestion and well done – you are our first year 7 contributor. I have had a look at this book and think it would appeal to word lovers and the language cognoscenti = people who know all about a particular subject (I found that in the book) (very impressive isn’t it)

  38. Natasha Ashen says:

    I’d tell you i love you but then i’d have to kill you, by Ally Carter.

    A girl named Cammie (who is also known as ‘Cammie the Chameleon’) goes to a private school called ‘Gallagher Academy’. Her mother is the headmistress. The school withholds many secrets which are revealed inside the pages of this book. I really liked the main character because her personality changes during the book, from shy and low self esteem to a confident student who falls in love. I liked the part when Cammie is on a mission and she is trying to find a bottle but gets caught during the act so the teacher asks her why she has been following him for the whole time he had been at the carnival and she says the first thing that pops inside her head. The story was a bit puzzling sometimes, the writer tells the reader too much about the character’s feelings and not enough on the actual problems. The writer chooses to write from the character’s point of view which helped to understand what the character was experiencing in the story. Rvery now and then the writer decides to tell the reader what is actually happening in the story; the setting, the problems or when something important happens, is it on the same day? The writer’s weakness is lack of information I was confused when Cammie walks into the classroom and the teacher shows her a video and suddenly she changes her mood, why? I would recommend this book to children aged 11-14 as it is a romance/issue.

    4 star rating

  39. Megan Sutton says:

    My Book Review – That Summer
    That Summer is about a tall 15 year old, Haven, that thinks she’s growing up much quicker than she had expected. She had always been one of the tallest and now she’s nearly 6 ft and doesn’t know where she fits in anymore.

    Throughout this dramatic story, a lot changes and many things happen to haven, but she still hasn’t decided whether she likes the changes or not.

    My favourite character is Ashley because she reminds me of someone I used to know, she’s one of those girls that get muddled up in all the boy trouble that she doesn’t have enough time to think! But soon enough she finds the right boy however no one thought that was the type of boy she would go for, but they sound as if they suit to me!

    This story brought back some memories of one summer and I guess that’s why I was so intrigued to read on. It made me feel as if I went back in time and I loved it!
    I think that this book would be interesting for ages 11-14 or even older, this book is touching for me because of past times therefore I hope you feel the same.

    I would definitely recommend this book with a star rating of 5!

    Loved it!

  40. upha barclay says:


    This sad tale about a teenager called Zelah Green is all about her having a bad life. To start it of her mum’s dead, her dad remarried a horrible grouchy lady, her dads a druggy/alcoholic so he ran away and to top it off she has OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) and because of this, her mean step mum sends her off, without telling her, to a mental institute. She is OCD when it comes to being clean, when she sees something dirty (germ alert or dirt alert) she either cleans it or she stays far away from it. Usually it is cleaned. You probably can see why her life is miserable. But her life started to lift off when she goes to the mental institute and she finds some really great friends, her dad comes back and best of all she finds her secret crush. (Flirt alert)
    This book made me feel really emotional inside, I almost cried. But when I reached the end I felt even more emotional as her dad took her out without the finishing off of her treatment without a notice, but what was so annoying was that there was a huge cliff hanger making me want to keep reading but I couldn’t. I do believe there is a sequel to this incredible teenage tale.
    It could have been better when it came to the description of other people. All I had known about was her, which made you imagine just her in an empty place. But everything else was absolutely perfect (in my opinion).

  41. Meridith Ball says:

    Out of the Ashes, By Michael Morpurgo.
    I recommend Out of the Ashes. This is a true story. It all happened in 2002 on New Year’s Day. It is about Foot and Mouth disease.
    It is about a little girl called Becky Morley and she writes about foot and mouth because she lives on a farm. But soon the nightmare is a few fields away. I think Becky is something like me because I love animals, I have my own dog and I have a horse.
    My favourite part is when she hides her lamb, Little Josh, in her wardrobe because there farm has foot and mouth so she hid him in the wardrobe so he wouldn’t get slaughtered.
    When I started reading this book it made me feel like I was there with her because she wrote in her diary and as she was writing she explained every little detail about what happened. It’s really sad at the end, but then it is happy again. I think 10-14 year olds would enjoy it, and I give it a rating of 4/5 🙂 🙂 🙂 :).

    • Freya Searl says:

      My mum read this book to me when I was younger. The last chapter made us both cry for different reasons. She admitted that she layed a single daffodil on her mother grave, just like Becky’s dad…. 😦

  42. Gemma Draper yr7 says:

    I loved the books “I would tell you i love you but then i would have to kill you”. This is a sequel about a girl who was born into the family job(spy agents) she hates this. she would rather be normal, but how can you when your mother is the headmistress of the spy school you attened. The thrillng tales writen by Ally Carter are a must read and once you start you willnot be able to put the books down.

  43. Freya Searl says:

    I strongly suggest that you read ALL of Sophie McKenzie. I have read the “Medusa Project”. (series of four books, each written by one of the four main characters) I have also read “Girl,Missing” and I am currently half way through the sequel “Sister, Missing”
    she has another two series of books. The first, “Blood Ties” and the second ” The Luke and Eve trilogy” ( a series of 3 books: “Six Steps To A Girl”, “The One And Only” and “Three’s A Crowd”. I have the first book and found it very good.
    There is just one more author I want to suggest, and that is Rick Riordan. He has written three series of amazing books, the first “Percy Jackson”. This is a series of five books about a Greek demigod (Percy Jackson, of coarse, son of Poseidon). As the series go on, you can see Percy grow as a boy and hero. If you enjoy the Greeks, this is the book for you. The first book has been made into an adapted film version. The second film is currently in the making and coming out 23rd March 2013.
    The second series is called “The Kane Chronicles”. This is a series of three books. It is an Egyption version of “Percy Jackson”. i did not enjoy this as much as “Percy Jackson. The third book is due to come out 1st May 2012.
    And finally the third series is a follow on of Percy jackson. Only this series has a twist. With the title “Hero’s of Olympus”, it involves not just the Greek demigod camp, camp half blood, AND the Roman demigod camp, Camp Jupiter. A third book of this series, “The Mark of Athena”is coming soon….
    (for years 7-8)

  44. Charlotte Beresford -Jones (7H) says:

    Book review-Anne of Green Gables,by L.M.Montgomery.
    This book is about a young girl with no parents who finds a family and this story potrays all the funny ups and sad lows of her new life.
    Blurb from the back;”Anne Shirley has never belonged to anybody before-not really.
    So she can hardly contain her excitement when she goes to live with Matthew and Marilla Cuthbert at Green Gables. But they are in for a very big surprise-they were expecting a boy to help with farm work. It’s not long before Anne’s escapades lead her into trouble, but with her irrepressible spirit and delightful charm, it becomes impossible to imagine life without her….”
    This is a fantastic book! I must have read it a million times it’s a great book for all ages. It gets you crying and laughing but always makes you want to read more! A great book for EVERYONE and i give it a rating of 10/10!

  45. ayali:D says:

    hi I’m ayali in 7H, I’ve just started at dhsg in September and I’m really enjoying it! I’m reading this amazing book at the mo called mist, its by kathryn james and it’s really creepy. it’s about this girl called nell whos sister, Gwen, goes missing during her sweet sixteen party at exact midnight. nell follows a boy who turns out to not be human into the mist. when she gets there she realises she’s in a completely different world. she searches for her sister there, and the boy she followed into the mist hold the key to saving her sister. i’d reccomend this book for 11-16 yr olds who like mythical books about tales that come true. also the sequel to this book is worth a read, it’s called frost and i really want to read it

  46. Evie Smith 7H says:

    Hello, I am Evie Smith in 7H,
    At the moment I am reading a brilliant book called ‘The Look’ by Sophia Bennett, it’s all about an eighteen year old girl called Ted, Ted is tall,slim and beautiful, when she is spotted by a modeling agency ,she can’t beleive it.
    At the same time,her gorgeous younger sister falls seriously ill,with cancer.
    With her world turned upside down,Ted must choose between fame and family.
    Can she be a supermodel and a super sister?
    This is a great book and eversince I took it out of the school library, i haven’t put it down!
    It is a definate must read book. It is a book i would recommend to anyone at any age.
    This book also refers to every day life and every day problems we face.
    Enjoy Reading.

  47. Beth Shackel 8H says:

    In my opinion, the best book EVER is “The Hunger Games” by Suzanne Collins. I cannot WAIT til the film comes out!! It might seem really violent when you read the blurb but it is an incredible book and really thought-provoking. Read it. 🙂

  48. Carys says:

    Over the half term, I decided I’d do something productive like reading a book! A couple of Christmases ago my grandma bought me The Girl… books and just looking at their chunkiness and the first few chapters put me right off. However, I read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and it’s actually not that bad once you get past the beginning which is, quite honestly, boring. I wouldn’t call it a ‘recommended read’ though… More of a ‘if there’s nothing else then there you go’! 🙂

  49. Alex Snell says:

    Is it bad that I still look on this from time to time and I don’t have lessons anymore? 😦
    I was going to recommend The Hunger Games trilogy, but someone has beaten me to it. Don’t judge the books by its Twilightish fanbase, because it actually has a decent storyline! Take the romance away from the Hunger Games, and you still have an action packed and rather scary book, but take the romance out of Twilight and you have a moany girl who hates bad weather and people. Therein lies the difference!

    Also, as recommended at the start of the year by a teacher for our coursework (AAAHH), The Virgin Suicides is a really really good book! However, I would say that it isn’t okay to read until you are in at least Year 9…it is quite dark and touches upon rather sensitive issues!

    I shall stop my invasion now, and try to figure out a way to stop the email notifications!

  50. emily says:

    I recommend reading breaking dawn by Stephenie Meyer. Not only is this book detailed but it is, overall, an amazing book. Breaking Dawn begins with another preface in which our narrator, Bella, once again faced with death. This time, though, it’s a person she loves who’s about to kill her. She decides that her love for that person leaves her no choice but to sacrifice her life.

  51. Beth Shackel says:

    I am currently a third of the way through “The Phantom of the Opera” by Monseiur Gaston Leroux. I am the biggest fan there can ever be of the stage musical, and I never even realised there was a book until my dad informed me a few months ago, so I decided to give it a whirl! I am thoroughly enjoying it, even though the book is a lot darker and scarier than the musical.

  52. Olivia Ketley says:

    Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban is the third book is the series. previously in Harry Potter, their has been flying cars and unicorn blood, but now everything has got one step better.

    Wolves and boggarts are coming to Hogwarts and Harry needs some literally life changing magic to help him survive another third year.

    i would rate this book at 5 star.

  53. Olivia Ketley says:

    David Walliams is known for making jaw-achingly funny novels. He has now published a new 6th novel called Demon Dentist.

    Evil is at work.
    Night time has fallen and children are dancing and prancing around their bedrooms holding their first tooth. After getting to sleep, they put their tooth under their pillow. But then, live spiders; dead slugs;hundreds of earwigs.

    But who or what is behind this?

  54. Lucy Welsh says:

    Jane Eyre (film)

    This exciting story adaption from Charlotte brönte’s book (jane eyre) is a truly triumphant film in the layout of a flash back. It starts out as Jane as a young orphan girl, in effect of being beaten and unloved by her horrid aunt, she has been left permanently scarred in her heart. She finally gets back on the track when she goes to live in a grand house as a governess where she displays her brightness by being able to speak fluent French with the little girl who also lives there. However Jane falls in love with the manly and charming master of the house, Mr.Rochester, and throughout the film their rollercoaster love goes up and down, despite that they finally agree to marry. However, Jane finds herself all alone outside in the cruel howling wind after discovering the shocking secret about Rochester, ruining her wedding day. But after being given everything she could ever want from a kind gentleman who takes her in (who also have an eye for her), will everything end up right? Will she go back to Rochester, or will secret haunt them both too much? Who will she love, who will she lose?
    Jane is portrayed as a timid but strong minded woman with pretty plain look. Wasikowska is perfect for this role as her beautiful tone of voice is exactly as Jane would be imagined as. Fassbender is also a perfect Rochester as he uses a well-mannered, poetic voice and a very strong a powerful man. The love between them is plausible as they are both quite attractive.
    The overall look of the film is authentic, believable and intriguing because of the gripping music and perfect scenery. Fukunaga took on a big job being the director yet pulled it off impeccably. This film is a beautiful and utter stunning film recommended that everybody is too watch it.

  55. Lucy Welsh says:

    Jane Eyre

    This exciting story adaption from Charlotte Brontë’s book (Jane Eyre) is a truly triumphant film in the layout of a flash back. It starts out as Jane as a young orphan girl, in effect of being beaten and unloved by her horrid aunt, she has been left permanently scarred in her heart. She finally gets back on the track when she goes to live in a grand house as a governess where she displays her brightness by being able to speak fluent French with the little girl who also lives there. However Jane falls in love with the manly and charming master of the house, Mr.Rochester, and throughout the film their rollercoaster love goes up and down, despite that, they finally agree to marry. However, Jane finds herself all alone outside in the cruel howling wind after discovering the shocking secret about Rochester, ruining her wedding day. But after being given everything she could ever want from a kind gentleman who takes her in (who also have an eye for her), will everything end up right? Will she go back to Rochester, or will secret haunt them both too much? Who will she love, who will she lose?
    Jane is portrayed as a timid but strong minded woman with pretty plain look. Wasikowska is perfect for this role as her beautiful tone of voice is exactly as Jane would be imagined as. Fassbender is also a perfect Rochester as he uses a well-mannered, poetic voice, and a very strong a powerful man. The love between them is plausible as they are both quite attractive.
    The overall look of the film is authentic, believable and intriguing because of the gripping music and perfect scenery. Fukunaga took on a big job being the director yet pulled it off impeccably. This film is a beautiful and utter stunning film recommended that everybody is to watch it.

  56. Ellie says:

    Beautiful Creatures and the rest of the caster chronicles are really good and I would recommend them to anyone around my age. It transports you to Gatlin, south Carolina,
    “In Ethan Wate’s hometown there lies the darkest of secrets..
    There is a girl. Slowly, she pulled the hood from her head … green eyes, black hair. Lena Duchannes.
    There is a curse. On the sixteenth moon, of the sixteenth year, the book will take what it’s been promised, And no one can stop it.
    In the end, there is a grave.
    Lena and Ethan become bound together by a deep, powerful love. But Lena is cursed, and on her sixteenth birthday, her fate will be decided. And Ethan never saw it coming.”
    WARNING: This book is highly addictive and you won’t be able to put it down.

  57. Jazzy says:

    A book that has changed me is ‘The Fault In Our Stars’ which has opened my eyes as it shows how the main character, Hazel, copes with her life threatening illness and how she deals with the bitter reality of the life she lives. The story stats to then around when she meets Augustus Waters at a cancer support group in which her mum made her go to. These moments in which they share explores the tragic, magical and loving times they have together, which could result in a heartbreak. That is why I recommend this John Green book.

  58. Lauren says:

    The book that leaves you wanting more is ‘Girl Missing’. Just from reading the first chapter I negver wanted to put the book down. Its all about this girl who wants to find out who she actually is but on her journeys she gradually finds out more and more which lead her into danger. Join Lauren on an adventure to find who she actually is and go through the troubles she fears with her best friend Jam. Will she find out who she actually is?

  59. John Steveland says:

    OF MICE AND MEN is the best book ever

  60. Emily B says:

    Feels a bit late in the game but: The Alchemist – Paul Coehlo, possibly one of the best books I’ve ever read. Who knew a young Spanish shepherd boy could be so easily related to? Read it in two days as I could not put it down!
    Same goes for The Celestine Prophecy – James Redfield, made me wish we lived in the world that he is searching for.

  61. R. Eve says:

    I think that this section of Book Babes needs to be rejuvenated with more recommendations – I love it! Currently reading ‘A long way down’ by Nick Hornby. It’s about 4 people who meet on a roof on a news eve all about to commit suicide. It is very uniquely written in its style with no numbered chapters, only the constant switching of narrative between the four of them. Really enlightening in terms of looking at alternative perspectives, but maybe not my easiest read? worth a go anyway – haven’t got to the end yet and is getting better!

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