Three brilliant books for kids in the UAE

We review the hottest stories for little readers

Three brilliant books for kids in the UAE

The Giant Jumperee
Author: Julia Donaldson.
Illustrator: Helen Oxenbury.
Best for: Ages three-five.
Price: Dhs45.

What the parent says
Julia Donaldson’s charming tale, beautifully illustrated by Helen Oxenbury, is destined to become a classic. This non-rhyming text is a change for the talented author but the story will hold young bookworms spellbound and begging for more.

What the four-year-old says
This is my new favourite book. I am going to take it into school to share with my friends in my class because I think my teacher will like reading it to us all. And we can all shout ‘I’m the giant jumperee and I’m as scary as can be!,’ which will be fun. I thought that the animal in the cave might be scary like the Gruffalo, but he is very cute and clever and also funny. The drawings of the animals are nice because they have sweet faces. I would like to meet the bunny one day.

The Boy at the Back of the Class
Onjali Rauf.
Illustrator: Pippa Curnick.
Best for: Ages eight-11.
Price: Dhs45.

What the parent says
I read this book wondering whether the theme, involving Brexit and refugees, would burden young readers with world problems and responsibilities. This was not the case by any means, instead the author highlights the importance of friendship and kindness in a world that makes little sense and it leaves the reader full of hope that goodness will always triumph. Perfect reading especially during The Year of Tolerance.

What the ten-year-old says
I really enjoyed the fact that the story is told from the point of view of a child, especially as he is the pretty much the same age as me. I thought that made it engaging and I couldn’t put it down. I finished it in two days. I like how a group of kids in Ahmet’s class become his friends and then try to help him. He isn’t the person they all think he is going to be, which teaches us that we can’t make an assumption based on just seeing someone for the first time.

Malamander (The Legends of Eerie-on-Sea)
Author: Thomas Taylor.
Illustrator: Tom Booth.
Best for: Ages nine-12.
Price: Dhs55

What the parent says
This delightfully spooky fantasy series opener for big kids and tweens drips with charm and chills, thanks to sprinklings of magic, humour, and mystery along with a dash of steampunk.

What the ten-year-old says
These kinds of books are my favourite, they are a little bit spooky and quite funny. I would say maybe don’t read it at night if you get scared easily. The characters are so cool and have great names like Herbert Lemon (like sherbert), Miss Violet Parma and Ambergriss. The settings in the hotel and the eerie seaside town are brilliant too. Discovering all about the mystery of the terrifying legend of the Malamander is made even better by a boat hook man, a mermonkey and a talking cat. Love this book.

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