Celebrating Diverse literature

Diverse childrens books

One of our goals when working with local schools and organisations, is to ensure any donations from us include a diverse selection of books, especially when we’re building or restocking a library.

Our carefully compiled list of books below are ones in which all children can see themselves represented and that reflect our world community in all of its diversity.

Inclusive content is not enough; we only select books which also show excellence in storyline/artwork.

If you’d like to buy any of the following books for your school, or your child, we have provided Amazon links below for your convenience.

Please note: As an Amazon affiliate we earn a small fee from qualifying purchases. This monies goes directly into the charity and does not cost you as a purchaser any more than using another link.

The Great Big Book Of Families

Mary Hoffman

What is a family? Once, it was said to be a father, mother, boy, girl, cat and dog living in a house with a garden. But as times have changed, families have changed too, and now there are almost as many kinds of families as colours of the rainbow - from a mum and dad or single parent to two mums or two dads, from a mixed-race family to children with different mums and dads, to families with a disabled member.

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The Proudest Blue

Ibtihaj Muhammad

It’s Faizah’s first day of school, and her older sister Asiya’s first day of wearing hijab – made of a beautiful blue fabric. But not everyone sees hijab as beautiful. In the face of hurtful, confusing words, will Faizah find new ways to be strong?

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To Market! To Market!

Anushka Ravishankar

A little Indian girl goes to market with a pocketful of change and no idea what to buy - just 'something funny, nice or even strange'. But among the rich and colorful wonders of the market, she finds the real fun's not in the buying at all.

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Where The River Runs Gold

Sita Brahmachari

The bees have long disappeared; instead children must labour on farms, pollinating crops by hand so that the nation can eat. The farm Shifa and Themba are sent to is hard and cruel. Themba won't survive there and Shifa comes up with a plan to break them out. But they have no idea where they are - their only guide is a map drawn from the ramblings of a stranger.

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The Mysterious Life Of Dr Barry

Lisa Williamson

London, 1800. Margaret Anne Bulkey desperately wants to be a surgeon - but only men can train as doctors. Fifty years later, Dr James Barry is famous, serving as Inspector General of Hospitals throughout the British Empire. A brilliant surgeon, bold reformer and prickly individual known for his fierce tempter, he fought a duel in South Africa and clashed with Florence Nightingale in the Crimea. But Dr Barry has a secret that he is determined no-one should ever learn...

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The Twitches Meet A Puppy

Hayley Scott

Open up the Teacup House - and meet four little rabbit heroes with big ideas! Watch out, Twitches - Stevie's got a furry visitor. The teacup house is turned upside down when a bouncy puppy comes to stay! Silver and Mama Bo hide in the garden, and meet a creature who needs their help. Now it's Twitches to the rescue...

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Toad Attack

Patrice Lawrence

After a toad lands on his head as he leaves his house one morning, Leo is determined to find out where it has come from and why. Together with his friend Rosa, he needs to come up with some answers before the angry residents of Upper Dab take matters into their own hands and the toads become toast!

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No Ballet Shoes In Syria

Catherine Bruton

Aya is eleven years old and has just arrived in Britain with her mum and baby brother, seeking asylum from war in Syria. When Aya stumbles across a local ballet class, the formidable dance teacher spots her exceptional talent and believes that Aya has the potential to earn a prestigious ballet scholarship. With beautiful, captivating writing, wonderfully authentic ballet detail, and an important message championing the rights of refugees, this is classic storytelling - filled with warmth, hope and humanity.

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The Biggest Story

Sarah Coyle

Errol’s mum is too busy to tell him a story because she has to do grown-up things, but he’s really, really bored. “Why don’t YOU think of a story?” his mum suggests. But Errol thinks this is a silly idea. He doesn’t know how to tell a story . . . So he goes out to the garden to think. Just as he’s starting to give up, he’s joined by a surprising host of different animals who inspire him to tell his story. They gather round to listen and a story begins to grow and grow and grow . . . until it’s the BIGGEST story ever!

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The Moonlight Zoo

Maudie Powell-Tuck

Eva has looked everywhere for her missing cat, Luna. Then she discovers the Moonlight Zoo – a magical place for all lost animals. There amongst lions and elephants she sees parrots, dogs, even guinea pigs. But can Eva find Luna before the zoo fades at dawn?

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The Sikh Snowman

Owen Gallagher

It’s Faizah’s first day of school, and her older sister Asiya’s first day of wearing hijab – made of a beautiful blue fabric. But not everyone sees hijab as beautiful. In the face of hurtful, confusing words, will Faizah find new ways to be strong?

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To Night Owl From Dogfish

Holly Goldberg-Sloan

Avery is bookish, intense, likes to plan ahead, and is afraid of many things. Bett is fearless, outgoing, and lives in the moment. What they have in common is that they are both twelve years old, and their dads are dating each other. Against all odds, the girls soon can’t imagine a life without each other. But when the worst happens, and their dads break up, Avery and Bett must figure out a way to get them to fall in love again. Is keeping a family together as easy as they think it is?

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A Kind Of Spark

Elle McNicoll

A Kind of Spark tells the story of 11-year-old Addie as she campaigns for a memorial in memory of the witch trials that took place in her Scottish hometown. Addie knows there's more to the story of these 'witches', just like there is more to hers. Can Addie challenge how the people in her town see her, and her autism, and make her voice heard?

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A Storm Of Strawberries

Jo Cotterill

Darby is twelve and has Down's syndrome. Her favourite things are music, chocolate, and her big sister Kaydee. It's nearly time for the annual chocolate hunt, the highlight of Darby's year, but Kaydee has brought a friend home for the weekend. Suddenly both the chocolate hunt and her favourite person are in danger of slipping away... and to make things worse, the family's strawberry farm is hit by a tornado. When the storm clears, what will be left? And can Darby mend what's been broken when nobody will listen to her?

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Agent Asha

Sophie Deen

Asha Joshi has the perfect excuse not to finish her homework. She's just been recruited to join the top-secret Children's Spy Agency. Her first mission: SAVE THE WORLD. Can she do it? Asha's a coder so she should be able to hack into the biggest tech company in the world, fight deadly sharks and figure out why the Internet has stopped working. All before bedtime. Easy, right?

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All Are Welcome

Alexander Penfold

Asha Joshi has the perfect excuse not to finish her homework. She's just been recruited to join the top-secret Children's Spy Agency. Her first mission: SAVE THE WORLD. Can she do it? Asha's a coder so she should be able to hack into the biggest tech company in the world, fight deadly sharks and figure out why the Internet has stopped working. All before bedtime. Easy, right?

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Anisha Accidental Detective

Serena Patel

Anisha is all set to be a (reluctant) bridesmaid at Aunty Bindi's wedding...until a secret ransom note arrives. Bindi's groom has been kidnapped and will only be released IF THE WEDDING IS CALLED OFF! With best friend Milo, mischievous Granny Jas, a runaway lobster, a kitten-loving giant, and some super skills of logic and observation, it's up to Anisha Mistry to find her uncle, before the big family wedding of the year becomes a big disaster.

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Best Friends, Busy Friends

Susan Rollings

This read-aloud storybook celebrates all types of friendship - at home, at school, and at play. Friends who share in the fun of everyday life, and who are there when we need them. With rhyming text, lively illustrations, and an inclusive collection of diverse characters, this book reminds us how important it is to have friends.

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Boy Everywhere

A.M. Dassu

This debut middle-grade novel chronicles the harrowing journey taken by Sami and his family from privilege to poverty, across countries and continents, from a comfortable life in Damascus, via a smuggler's den in Turkey, to a prison in Manchester. A story of survival, of family, of bravery ... In a world where we are told to see refugees as the 'other', this story will remind readers that 'they' are also 'us'.

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Children of The World

Tessa Strickland

Innovative and inclusive, Children of the World empowers young readers to learn about children around the globe and ponder their own place in it. Created with the guidance of diversity specialists, this groundbreaking work of narrative nonfiction addresses the need for children’s books that depict diversity, while simultaneously demonstrating the interconnectedness and uniqueness of all people.

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Clean Up

Nathan Bryon

Join lovable, passionate Rocket as she sets off on a mission to save a Caribbean island from plastic pollution! When Rocket goes for a holiday to visit her grandparents, she's shocked by the pollution that is spoiling their island home and putting the local sea life at risk. Can she think of a way to save the day? This is a heartwarming, timely and empowering picture book, showing how we ALL can make a difference.

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Crescent Moons

Hena Khan

From a crescent moon to a square garden to an octagonal fountain, this breathtaking picture book celebrates the shapes―and traditions―of the Muslim world. Sure to inspire questions and observations about world religions and cultures, Crescent Moons and Pointed Minarets is equally at home in a classroom reading circle and on a parent's lap being read to a child.

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Danny Chung Does Not Do Maths

Maisie Chan

Eleven-year-old Danny Chung loves drawing more than anything - certainly more than maths, which, according to his dad and everyone else, is what he is 'supposed' to be good at. He also loves having his own room where he can draw in peace, so his life is turned upside down when a surprise that he's been promised turns out to be his little, wrinkly, ex-maths-champion grandmother from China. Before long though it becomes clear to Danny that there is more to Nai Nai than meets the eye, and that they have more in common that he thought possible ...

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Dave And The Tooth Fairy

Verna Wilkins

Dave has a wobbly tooth. He wibbles and wobbles it, but it won't come out. But then one day Dave lets out an enormous sneeze and the tooth flies across the room and vanishes. Dave searches high and low, but it's nowhere to be seen. How will he get the tooth fairy to visit him now? A heartwarming picture book with a unique spin on the tooth fairy tradition.

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Farmer Falgu Goes Kite Flying

Chitra Soundar

Farmer Falgu’s ingenious kite-making skills save the day and create a colourful flying display! Farmer Falgu and his daughter Eila load up the bullock cart and set off for the annual kite-flying festival. Along the way they pick up Ahmed and Pushpa who are heading there too. But before they all arrive, an unexpected gust of wind carries all their kites away. Can Farmer Falgu come up with a plan so that they can still take part in the kite-flying festivities?

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George

Alex Gino

When people look at George, they think they see a boy. But she knows she's not a boy. She knows she's a girl. George thinks she'll have to keep this a secret forever. Then her teacher announces that their class play is going to be Charlotte's Web. George really, really, really wants to play Charlotte. But the teacher says she can't even try out for the part, because she's a boy. With the help of her best friend, Kelly, George comes up with a plan. Not just so she can be Charlotte - but so everyone can know who she is, once and for all.

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Goldy Luck And the Three Pandas

Natasha Yim

It's Chinese New Year, and Goldy Luck’s mother wants her to take a plate of turnip cakes to the neighbors. The Chans aren’t home, but that doesn’t stop Goldy from trying out their rice porridge, their chairs, and their beds - with disastrous results. In this funny and festive retelling of "Goldilocks and the Three Bears", Natasha Yim introduces a plucky heroine who takes responsibility for her actions and makes a new friend just in time for Chinese New Year.

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Grandad's Camper

Harry Woodgate

Grandad's camper van is hidden away in the garage – now Gramps isn't around any more, the adventures they shared travelling in it just wouldn’t be the same. As she listens to his wonderful stories, Grandad’s granddaughter has an idea to cheer him up...

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Hair, It's A Family Affair

Mylo Freeman

A celebration of natural hair, through the vibrant and varied hairstyles found in a single family. With Mylo Freeman's trademark colourful illustrations, this delightful book will show young black children the joys that can be found through their natural hair.

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Happy In Our Skin

Fran Manushkin

A delightfully rhythmical read-aloud text is paired with bright, bustling art from the award-winning Lauren Tobia, illustrator of Anna Hibiscus, in this joyful exploration of the new skin of babyhood. A wonderful gift book for new mums and toddlers, all children can see themselves, and open their eyes to the world around them, in this sweet, scrumptious celebration of skin in all its many, many, wonderful forms.

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Julian At The Wedding

Jessica Love

Julian and his nana are attending a wedding. Better yet, Julian is in the wedding along with his cousin Marisol. When wedding duties are fulfilled and with a new dog friend in tow, the pair takes off to roam the venue, exploring everywhere from underneath tables to enchanting willow trees to ... muddy puddles? After all, it wouldn’t be a wedding without fun, laughter and a little magical mischief.

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Knights And Bikes

Gabrielle Kent

Welcome to the sleepy island of Penfurzy, where nothing exciting ever really happens. OR DOES IT? Adventure awaits Demelza and her new best friend in the whole world, Nessa, as they explore the island and uncover the mysteries of the Penfurzy Knights. With a honking pet goose sidekick, quirky islanders and a legendary treasure to find, it's up to Nessa and Demelza to ride their bikes, solve the puzzles before them, and face down danger with frisbees, water-balloons, feathers .... and a toilet plunger.

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Looking For Lord Ganesh

Mahtab Narsimhan

Anika has recently emigrated from India and is having a difficult time adjusting to life in a new country not to mention life in a new school. Remembering the advice her grandmother gave her, she prays to Lord Ganesh, the Hindu elephant god. But Lord Ganesh is slow to respond and Anika takes to the internet to attract his attention. When her problems begin to resolve themselves, she can breathe a sigh of relief. But has Lord Ganesh truly been helping her, or has she been relying on her own inner wisdom all along?

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Luna Loves Art

Joseph Coelho

Every week Luna looks forward to one special day: the day when she discovers magic among the library shelves; the day she gets to spend with her dad. Exploring the books, Luna and her dad find magic, mystery and even start to mend their own history.

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Me And My Sister

Rose Robbins

A celebration of the highs and lows of having a much loved but differently abled brother or sister. This appealing brother and sister duo spend a lot of their day together, eating meals, going to school and playing. But life with an autistic sibling is not always easy. Through the eyes of the brother, we find out how they are both very different, but also very similar in other ways, and come what may they have lots of fun together and love each other just the same.

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Meesha Makes Friends

Tom Percival

Meesha loves making things . . . but there's one thing she finds difficult to make - friends. She doesn't know quite what to do, what to say or when to say it. But one day she discovers that she has a special talent that might just help her navigate social situations - and maybe even make new friends.

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My Dad Is A Grizzly Bear

Swapna Haddow

In this family, it's just possible that Dad is a grizzly bear. He has fuzzy fur, enormous paws and loves the outdoors. He sleeps a lot even in the cinema and when he's awake, he's always hungry, usually eating up all the honey. What else could Dad be? But sometimes, when it's scary at night, a lovely big bear hug is just what is needed

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Nadia's Hands

Karen English

When Nadia is chosen to be a flower girl in Auntie Laila's traditional Pakistani wedding, her hands are decorated with beautiful designs made with mehndi, and she comes to understand the rich culture she has inherited.

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Nen And The Lonely Fisherman

Ian Eagleton

Far out to sea and deep below the whispering waves lives a merman called Nen. Nen spends his days exploring his underwater kingdom, but something is missing: his heart is empty. So, Nen ventures to the forbidden world above and it is here that he meets Ernest, a lonely fisherman. But can two people from different worlds be together and what will happen when a terrifying storm gathers?

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No Ballet Shoes In Syria

Catherine Bruton

Aya is eleven years old and has just arrived in Britain with her mum and baby brother, seeking asylum from war in Syria. When Aya stumbles across a local ballet class, the formidable dance teacher spots her exceptional talent and believes that Aya has the potential to earn a prestigious ballet scholarship. With beautiful, captivating writing, wonderfully authentic ballet detail, and an important message championing the rights of refugees, this is classic storytelling - filled with warmth, hope and humanity.

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Nothing Ever Happens Here

Sarah Hagger-Holt

Izzy's family is under the spotlight when her dad comes out as Danielle, a trans woman. Izzy is terrified her family will be torn apart. Will she lose her dad? Will her parents break up? And what will people at school say? Izzy's always been shy, but now all eyes are on her. Can she face her fears, find her voice and stand up for what's right?

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Omar, The Bees And Me

Helen Mortimer

An uplifting story on sustainability, in response to many 'heavy' green titles coming to the market that children often find intimidating. Omar, The Bees and Me encourages children to look after nature in local communities planting wild flowers to form bee corridors.

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Ossiri And The Bala Mengro

Richard O’Neill

A Traveller girl creates her own musical instrument from a willow branch and lots of recycled objects. She plays it enthusiastically, but it sounds terrible! Ignoring warnings not to awaken the ogre in the hills, Ossiri goes there to practise playing her instrument. Will she wake the ogre, and will it appreciate her playing?

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Pacho Nacho

Silvia Lopez

Mama and Papa could not agree on a name for their first baby, and everyone in the family had an opinion. That's how the name Pacho-Nacho-Nico-Tico-Melo-Felo-Kiko-Rico came to be, and Pacho's parents insisted that everyone use his full name. But when Pacho finds himself in trouble, his younger brother, Juan, must quickly find help, which isn't easy when you have to keep saying Pacho-Nacho-Nico-Tico-Melo-Felo-Kiko-Rico

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Pea's Book Of Holidays

Susie Day

Pea's family are separating for the summer holidays. Big sister, Clover, is off to Drama Camp, Mum is staying at home to finish her new book, and Pea and Tinkerbell are going camping. But things don't go quite to plan, and Pea finds her summer suddenly filled with Enid Blyton, castles, ghosts and mysteries....

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Planet Omar: Unexpected Super Spy

Zanib Mian

Omar and his friends have been saving up their pocket money for ages so they can have the world's most epic Nerf Blaster battle. But when Omar discovers that his mosque is in trouble, they decide to donate their pennies to help save it.

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Running On Empty

S. E. Durrant

AJ's grandfather has always been the one to keep his unusual family together, so when he dies things start to unravel at the edges. AJ is worried about his parents but they don't really seem to notice. In order to deal with his grief and to keep his anxiety at bay, AJ does what he and his grandfather did best: running. Round and round the Olympic Park, aiming for the cross country trials, running to escape, AJ only seems to be heading ever closer to disaster.

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S.C.R.EA.M.

Andrew Beasley

Roll up, roll up if you dare to Doctor Vindicta's carnival! Gasp at the dancing ghosts! Grimace at the creepy clowns! Giggle in the hall of mirrors! It's all harmless fun and frights... until a young boy disappears. The police believe he's run away, but his sister swears he was snatched by a monster.

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Son Of The Circus

E. L. Norry

When a stranger, a man the boys don't remember ever seeing before, appears in their kitchen, Ted is hit with a shocking revelation. This man is his father – the first black circus owner in Victorian Britain, Pablo Fanque. Before Ted can recover from his shock, he is sent away with Pablo to learn the tricks of the circus trade. Pablo is determined for Ted to follow in his footsteps.

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The Biggest Story

Sarah Coyle

Errol’s mum is too busy to tell him a story because she has to do grown-up things, but he’s really, really bored. “Why don’t YOU think of a story?” his mum suggests. But Errol thinks this is a silly idea. He doesn’t know how to tell a story . . . So he goes out to the garden to think. Just as he’s starting to give up, he’s joined by a surprising host of different animals who inspire him to tell his story. They gather round to listen and a story begins to grow and grow and grow . . . until it’s the BIGGEST story ever!

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The Boy Who Loved Everyone

Jane Porter

"I love you," Dimitri tells everyone, from his friends at nursery to the big tree in the playground. But why does no one say it back? Dimitri worries no one loves him – until he finds out there are lots of different ways love can spread through the world. A touching and uplifting story, perfect for sharing.

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The Bread Pet

Kate DePalma

Cora promises to keep Uncle JB’s Bread Pet alive but didn’t anticipate its exponential growth! She needs to come up with a solution — and fast! This whimsical story of family, creativity and community will inspire young makers to experiment and share their gifts with others.

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The Great Big Book Of Families

Mary Hoffman

What is a family? Once, it was said to be a father, mother, boy, girl, cat and dog living in a house with a garden. But as times have changed, families have changed too, and now there are almost as many kinds of families as colours of the rainbow - from a mum and dad or single parent to two mums or two dads, from a mixed-race family to children with different mums and dads, to families with a disabled member.

View on Amazon

The Moonlight Zoo

Maudie Powell-Tuck

Eva has looked everywhere for her missing cat, Luna. Then she discovers the Moonlight Zoo – a magical place for all lost animals. There amongst lions and elephants she sees parrots, dogs, even guinea pigs. But can Eva find Luna before the zoo fades at dawn?

View on Amazon

The Mysterious Life Of Dr Barry

Lisa Williamson

London, 1800. Margaret Anne Bulkey desperately wants to be a surgeon - but only men can train as doctors. Fifty years later, Dr James Barry is famous, serving as Inspector General of Hospitals throughout the British Empire. A brilliant surgeon, bold reformer and prickly individual known for his fierce tempter, he fought a duel in South Africa and clashed with Florence Nightingale in the Crimea. But Dr Barry has a secret that he is determined no-one should ever learn...

View on Amazon

The Proudest Blue

Ibtihaj Muhammad

It’s Faizah’s first day of school, and her older sister Asiya’s first day of wearing hijab – made of a beautiful blue fabric. But not everyone sees hijab as beautiful. In the face of hurtful, confusing words, will Faizah find new ways to be strong?

View on Amazon

The Sikh Snowman

Owen Gallagher

It’s Faizah’s first day of school, and her older sister Asiya’s first day of wearing hijab – made of a beautiful blue fabric. But not everyone sees hijab as beautiful. In the face of hurtful, confusing words, will Faizah find new ways to be strong?

View on Amazon

The Twitches Meet A Puppy

Hayley Scott

Open up the Teacup House - and meet four little rabbit heroes with big ideas! Watch out, Twitches - Stevie's got a furry visitor. The teacup house is turned upside down when a bouncy puppy comes to stay! Silver and Mama Bo hide in the garden, and meet a creature who needs their help. Now it's Twitches to the rescue...

View on Amazon

To Market! To Market!

Anushka Ravishankar

A little Indian girl goes to market with a pocketful of change and no idea what to buy - just 'something funny, nice or even strange'. But among the rich and colorful wonders of the market, she finds the real fun's not in the buying at all.

View on Amazon

To Night Owl From Dogfish

Holly Goldberg-Sloan

Avery is bookish, intense, likes to plan ahead, and is afraid of many things. Bett is fearless, outgoing, and lives in the moment. What they have in common is that they are both twelve years old, and their dads are dating each other. Against all odds, the girls soon can’t imagine a life without each other. But when the worst happens, and their dads break up, Avery and Bett must figure out a way to get them to fall in love again. Is keeping a family together as easy as they think it is?

View on Amazon

Toad Attack

Patrice Lawrence

After a toad lands on his head as he leaves his house one morning, Leo is determined to find out where it has come from and why. Together with his friend Rosa, he needs to come up with some answers before the angry residents of Upper Dab take matters into their own hands and the toads become toast!

View on Amazon

Where The River Runs Gold

Sita Brahmachari

The bees have long disappeared; instead children must labour on farms, pollinating crops by hand so that the nation can eat. The farm Shifa and Themba are sent to is hard and cruel. Themba won't survive there and Shifa comes up with a plan to break them out. But they have no idea where they are - their only guide is a map drawn from the ramblings of a stranger.

View on Amazon
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