Early Chapter Books to Enjoy

44 Tiny Acrobats – Sylvia Bishop

  • published by Little Tiger
  • RRP – £6.99 (pb)

The second title in the series, following on from 44 Tiny Secrets which introduced readers to Betsy and her 44 talented and clever mice, this instalment sees Betsy becoming curious about family links to a circus that has arrived in town. Unintentionally starting a chain of events that ultimately sees her separated from her mice and leaving her devastated, readers will enjoy the adventure that awaits them as they accompany a very determined Betsy on a journey of discovery, with her sole goal being to reunite with her mice as soon as she can. The book has circus content, mystery, and family at the heart of the story – as well as 44 phenomenal mice!

Jasper & Scruff Take a Bow – Nicola Colton

  • published by Little Tiger
  • RRP – £5.99 (pb)

This is the third title in the series, with Jasper & Scruff and Jasper & Scruff hunt for the golden bone preceding this latest book, which centres around a variety show that best friends Jasper and Scruff each enter. When Scruff makes it through to the finals he kindly asks Jasper to form a duet act with him, and after some initial hesitations the pair work well together, practicing their magic act. When the friends observe other finalists having accidents they begin to suspect something isn’t right, and that one of the other entrants is behind the incidents, so they set about looking for proof of sabotage. A mystery awaits readers, who can form their own suspicions as to who is behind the events Jasper and Scruff witness, and remain invested to the end of the story, determining if they were right.

Mirabelle Breaks the Rules – Harriet Muncaster

  • Published by Oxford University Press

This latest instalment in the series sees Mirabelle heading to school, and getting up to some crazy antics while there. Mirabelle is half fairy and half witch, and reminds me of Mildred Hubble from The Worst Witch series by Jill Murphy, especially as she never intends to create the chaos and mischief she finds herself in, it is like she finds it along the way, or that fate has already decided against her plans to behave! During a lesson Mirabelle mixes up a potion ingredient, and the consequences are hilarious. Readers will be laughing out loud as they join Mirabelle in school, and enjoy the wrongdoings that happen, which also include Mirabelle getting over confident during her class activity to practice flying on broomsticks, and consequently puts herself in danger before being rescued by a friend, who then needs saving too.

Museum Kittens : The Sleepover Mystery – Holly Webb

In this edition of the Museum Kittens books we are reunited with the gorgeous little fluff balls that we have come to love from the previous titles, and they are just as lively and adventurous as ever! When Bianca has a falling out with her two siblings after causing damage to a display in the museum she decides to stop hanging out with them, keeping to herself elsewhere in the museum. Whilst debating with herself as to whether she wants to remain there amongst the historical displays and artefacts she comes face to face with a rat that is distressing the school children staying there for a school trip sleepover. Not wanting to see the children upset Bianca springs into action and gives chase to the rat, not realising that the rat has ulterior motives, for there are several rats and they have been plotting against the kittens. Gripping content for readers that enjoy stories containing animals, adventure, mystery, and an overall quality book.

Kitty and the Twilight Trouble – Paula Harrison, and illustrated by Jenny Lovlie

‘Girl by day. Cat by night. Ready for adventure’

Kitty comes to the rescue once again when her friend Pixie finds herself in trouble after she made friends with a new cat, and finds herself in danger by following her new friend Hazel to the top of a ferris wheel. It comes naturally to Kitty to fix problems and rescue animals, as she has superhero powers, just like the nest of birds early on in the story. After rescuing Pixie and Hazel the cats and Kitty talk openly and honestly, and become friends and a team once more. Perfect for cat lovers looking to enjoy an adventure story with a dash of superhero added in. The bold, silhouetted illustrations throughout this book really inspire readers imaginations, and depict this story brilliantly, with use of an iconic colour palette that makes these titles in the Kitty series easy to identify and enjoy.

The Princess in Black and the Bathtime Battle – Shannon and Dean Hale, illustrated by LeUyen Pham

The princess in black teams up with other princesses from neighbouring kingdoms, and who are also superheroes in secret, just like her, to try to eradicate an awful smell that engulfing their lands, shrouding everything in stench. When they realise the smell is coming from a monster they set about working out ways to fix the problem. The monster has other ideas though, distinctly unkeen on having a bath, but working together means the task ahead is much more manageable, and the princesses work out a way to stay in touch in order to be there for one another going forward too. An energetic, funny, girl power fueled adventure that early chapter book readers will definitely enjoy.

The Terrible Vikings – Francesca Simon

  • Published by Faber & Faber
  • RRP – £6.99

Containing three independent short stories that feature Hack and Whack, two terrible vikings. The pair get up to no good when they go against what there parents say, and attend a birthday party their friends are invited to – even though Hack and Whack certainly were not. Cue raiding the gifts and stealing the dinner supplies – and that is just what awaits readers in the first of the three stories to feature inside this book, with two more hilarious adventures to enjoy after. This book is brilliant fun, with great characters to introduce younger readers to ahead of viking themed confident chapter books such as the How to train your Dragon series by Cressida Cowell.

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