TOO Hot to Hug!, by Steve Smallman and Gee Biscoe (Little Tiger; €13.40 HB), is the story of Rupert who finds a warm egg and takes it home.
When it hatches a small dragon, Rupert and his parents are delighted. But when the dragon grows too big, he has to go. Can Rupert find a way to keep him? A heart-warming picture book for four-plus.
Horrid Henry Rocks, by Francesca Simon (Orion; €6.09), is another saga in the life of a kid so wicked he could only be loved by his villainous peers and a shortsighted mother. These four stories show him at his worst as he torments his younger brother, wrecks Moody Margaret’s sleepover by scaring the girls and shocks a whole audience at Daffy and her Dancing Daisies Show. A! laugh-aloud romp for boys aged six-plus.
Laura’s Star: Friends Forever is by Klaus Baumgart (Little Tiger; €6.09). When Laura and Sophie plant a tiny tree, it is to bind them forever. But when Laura’s little brother accidently breaks it, Laura lies to protect him. When she discovers the lie, Sophie breaks the friendship. Laura tells her woes to the star that shines through her bedroom window. But as Laura’s birthday approaches, Sophie remains aloof. A charming book for seven-plus.
The beginning of Montacute ,by Lucy Jago (Bloomsbury; €13.40 HB), takes up the life of Cess as she tends the poultry at Montacute House on her 13th birthday. When she finds a pendant that bears a miniature of a beautiful woman, she tucks it into her bodice. Illegitimate and scorned, Cess has one good friend, William. . When he disappears, Cess’s search for him takes her into a world of witchcraft and sinister religion. Confronted by danger, Cess grows stronger through a few good people. But these too are vulnerable to the evil of the person whose past is intertwined with hers and the woman depicted on the pendant. A captivating read for age 12-plus.
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