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I wish I’d written…

Michelle Paver chooses The Giant Under the Snow by John Gordon, a book that thrills her as much today as it did her nine-year-old self.

Wolf Brother by Michelle Paver was first published in 2004 and became an international bestseller. To mark its tenth anniversary, a special edition is published by Orion at £7.99 pbk.

I borrowed The Giant Under the Snow from the library when I was nine, and loved it so much that I saved up my pocket money and bought my own copy. I was swept away by its uniquely exciting, frightening adventure that felt as if it could really, really happen. Three teenagers are locked in a desperate battle with an ancient warlord and his terrifying, undead ‘leather men’ – while the everyday world carries on around them unawares. The fact that it’s Christmas only heightens the protagonists’ sense of isolation. The writing is as vivid as a lightning flash, and so compelling that you just can’t stop turning the

Good Reads The Sacrifice

Charlie Higson, Puffin, 978-0141336138, £7.99. pbk

This book was about a zombie apocalypse (this is #4 in the series) which randomly spread across the UK and everyone under 14 did not get infected. This means that they have the big and organised groups of kids take over different landmarks to survive. I like how it has a touching and thrilling storyline and I also love how much detail it has in the violence as that is the main feature of this book. One of my favourite parts was when Shadowman was actually watching over the big fight that happened in the first book and saw all of the deaths and the chaos. I would recommend this book.

Nathan Mousley, Year 7 Cookie

Jacqueline Wilson, Corgi, 978-0552558310, £6.99

Cookie is about a girl called Beauty and Beauty and her mum live in fear of her dad’s fierce rages when they suggest something silly like getting a pet. After Beauty’s disastrous birthday party, Dad’s temper is out of control and he slapped Beauty across the face. Beauty and her mum are too scared to leave and start a new and sweeter life. What I like about the book is that it is very dramatic and you never know what will happen next. For example I didn’t know that the book was going

Nathan Mousley Adanna

to get so violent and sad but I enjoy how exciting the book is. A lot of detail in books is good but sometimes I felt it got a bit too graphic. Adanna, Year 7

Sons of Destiny (The Saga of Darren Shan)

Darren Shan, HarperCollins, 978-0007159215, £6.99 pbk

The book is called Sons of Destiny and the author is named Darren Shan. The book is about Darren Shan (as a vampire) and his dad Steven, who is an evil vampire. The dad stole Darren’s best friend and they have a huge fight in a baseball arena. The think that I like about the book is that they have a huge fight and Steven gets killed by Darren (son kills dad). One thing I didn’t like about the book is that Darren’s best mate got kidnapped and that Darren had to change his half cousin into an actual vampire. My favourite part of the book is when the

pages. The characters are deftly and economically drawn, there’s a marvellous sense of menace (and a truly frightening dog), as well as quite the best description of being able to fly that I’ve ever read. I can’t honestly say that I wish I’d written it myself, because nobody else but John Gordon could possibly have done that. But whenever I re-read it (and that’s always around Christmas), it inspires me in my own writing. It’s eerie, gripping and impossible to put down. I’ve read it so often that my elderly copy is falling apart. The thrill never palls.

The Giant Under the Snow (978-1842555453) by John Gordon is published by Orion Children’s Books at £6.99 pbk.

Chosen by pupils at Harris City Academy, Crystal Palace, London

Steven Archer

good and the bad have a huge showdown. I rate this book 5/5. Steven Archer, Year 7

Skulduggery Pleasant

Derek Landy, HarperCollins, 978-0007241620, £6.99 pbk

Skulduggery Pleasant is an exciting book with lots of action and whenever you turn the page something interesting happens. Every word I read I can feel the adrenaline rush through me. This book is about a skeleton detective who is, well, dead hence the term skeleton detective. He has an apprentice, a young but powerful girl, only aged 13, who fights crime with magic. I liked that every moment of the book was either very humorous or very exciting. And trust me, it will never send you to sleep. The one thing I didn’t like about the book is that sometimes you can never understand what’s happening and you have to read back. My favourite part of the book was the fight scene at



the end when nearly everyone and everything was destroyed. Naeem, Year 7

Jamie Johnson 3: Golden Goal

Dan Freedman, Scholastic, 978-1407116051, £5.99 pbk

It was about a boy who had the dream to become a professional and at the end after many injuries his dream came true. I liked that it was a very fascinating book about football. I’m very interested in football even though I may not be the best at it. What I didn’t like was that it ended in a cliff-hanger and I wished that it would talk more about his life after the victory. My favourite part of the book was when he achieved his victory of being a professional.

Sudeesh, Year 7

Thanks to Sarah Watters, Librarian.

Books for Keeps No.208 September 2014 17

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