Newest Dyslexia Friendly Reviews

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Review of

The Humiliations of Welton Blake by Alex Wheatle

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We meet Welton Blake at the worst of times – only they should be the best of times. He should be getting a text from the most bae-worthy girl in school in regards to a cinema date, but his phone has packed up, he's chundered last night's meal and his breakfast over another girl in class, who's duffed him up in response, and the wanna-bae seems to actually be with someone else anyway. On a bigger scale he's living with his mother and not much income now that the dad has left the picture – yes, things are so bad they're resorting to having cabbage for dinner. I know, right? But surely this is just a blip, a day at school to forget, and everything (like his vomit) will all come out in the wash? This can't be the start of a most nightmarish time for young Welton? Full Review

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Review of

Survival in Space: The Apollo 13 Mission by David Long and Stefano Tambellini (illustrator)

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It's fifty years since the Apollo 13 mission was launched from the Kennedy Space Centre in Florida, but the story of that journey remains one of the greatest survival stories of all time. Survival in Space: The Apollo 13 Mission is a brilliant retelling of what happened. Full Review

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Review of

Sequin and Stitch by Laura Dockrill and Sara Ogilvie (illustrator)

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Sequin loved her mum to bits, but sometimes she got very cross with her. It wasn't that mum wouldn't go outside their flat - Sequin coped with that - it was because she never pushed to get credit for what she did. Mum is a seamstress and she makes the sort of clothes that you see on red carpets or at important weddings. She's not the designer - they're the people who make a lot of money from the clothes. Mum is the person who actually makes the garments and she's really talented, but when people talk about the dress or the suit, they talk about the designer. The seamstress is never mentioned. Full Review

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Review of

Jane Eyre: a Retelling by Tanya Landman

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A young woman, fresh from living with horrid relatives who could care less about her, and years in a dreary school, moves into Thornfield Hall with only one intent – to have something like the life she wants – and with only one job, to tutor a young half-French girl, whose father is almost always absent. When he does turn up he seems to be dark, brooding and troubled – but that's nothing compared to the darker, more broody and even more troubling secret in the house. Yes, if you know Jane Eyre then you know the rest – but if you don't, for whatever reason, this is a wonderful book to turn to. Full Review

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Review of

The Starlight Watchmaker by Lauren James

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This is a dyslexia-friendly, science fiction novella for young adults. It tells the tale of Hugo, an unwanted and rather lonely android, who makes a living for himself mending time-travel watches. When one of his clients demands that his broken watch be mended, Hugo realises there is a mystery to be solved and is only too ready to help. An exciting journey of discovery unfolds, which takes Hugo out of his drab attic workroom and into a scary adventure with some amazing new friends, exploring regions of the planet never before known to exist. Full Review

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Review of

Special Delivery by Jonathan Meres

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How do you explain to children about dementia? Injuries or illnesses are obvious, but when the problem is the brain which isn't functioning quite as it used to it isn't as easy to grasp. Frank was a normal nine-year-old and like many nine-year-olds what he wanted was a new bike. He'd had his for about seventy-eight years and he didn't want to raise the seat any more. Mum pointed out that it wasn't his birthday or Christmas any time soon and bikes cost a lot of money, which didn't grow on trees. His sister Lottie had a solution: Frank could help her with her paper round. Frank agreed despite thinking that it would take him a thousand years to save up the money for a bike AND he had to get up at six o'clock in the morning. Full Review

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Review of

The Spectacular Revenge of Suzi Sims by Vivian French

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Suzi Simms loved running and it was her ambition to win the 100 metres race on sports day at the end of term - and that was next week. We're going to read about what happened in her diary, although there's a warning that we really shouldn't be reading it, particularly as it's about Barbie Meek. To say that the two girls don't get on at all well is a bit of an understatement. Suzi wouldn't actually do anything about it, but Barbie is a troublemaker and she wants to win the 100 metres race too - by fair means or foul. Full Review

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Review of

Dog on a Log Chapter Books: Step 1 by Pamela Brookes

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What do you do when your child has dyslexia and you need books which will help them to achieve the wonder that is reading? You can risk buying early readers, but the sounds in the book might not be the ones you've been working on and encountering words which are just too challenging can have more of a negative effect on the young dyslexic than a child without that problem. You need to be able to buy books at a reasonable price which concentrate on what you've been working on, without anything else being thrown into the mix. You need a story which engages the young mind and you need stages which progress steadily through the learning process without there being any large jumps. Some online support and games wouldn't go amiss, either. Reading - and learning to read - should be a pleasure. It should be fun. Full Review

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Review of

One Shot by Tanya Landman

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Pa and I understood each other. Our souls were cut from the same cloth. But Pa has since died, leaving Maggie very much alone in her family. She was the only one of three children who looked like him, and none of the others acted like him, and certainly, his wife didn't seem to fully understand him. Maggie might as well be reliving the Cinderella story, stuck with two siblings and mother that are fully against her. But at least she can sneak out at night, and shoot some game to stop them from starving? Well, no, not where her mother is concerned – the very idea of a female shooting things, when they could be preparing for a life of unhappy married drudgery, is just scandalous. Full Review

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Review of

Lark by Anthony McGowan

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I'll warn you first.

This is the fourth and last story about Nicky and Kenny. Try not to cry before you've even read the first page.

Things have got tense at home - again - for Nicky and his learning-disabled brother Kenny. Their mum is coming to visit - the mum who abandoned them a long time ago. They haven't seen her for years and the impending visit is stirring up a lot of uncomfortable feelings. And Nicky's girlfriend has ended things. To take their minds off it all, Nicky and Kenny plan a day out, trekking across the moors. But it doesn't go to plan and an accident puts both boys - and their dog, Tina, in terrible danger. Full Review

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Review of

Mr Tiger, Betsy and the Blue Moon by Sally Gardner

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Betsy K Glory lives a rather wonderful life on a peaceful island where nothing horrible ever happens. Her father, Alonso, makes the most wonderful ice cream in every flavour you could imagine. Her mother, Myrtle, is a mermaid and comes to visit regularly, although she still lives in the sea. Betsy dreams of two things: firstly, about the circus owned by a tiger and whether it would ever come to her island and secondly, about a magical ice cream made from the berries of the Gongalong bush. One scoop of this ice cream can make wishes come true.

And then Mr Tiger and his circus arrive. And a journey is planned... Full Review

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Review of

Run Wild by Gill Lewis

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Meet Izzy and Asha. Bullied away from the local attempt at a skatepark, they find a huge waste ground in the shadow of a derelict gasometer to practise on, which they duly do, even though they have to drag Izzy's younger brother with them. The following day they all want to return, as does the brother's schoolfriend, despite – and of course because of – there is a huge wolf living in the site. Can the children survive living in the urban wilderness, alongside such obvious dangers? Full Review

link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/Jennings Different/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21

Review of

A Different Dog by Paul Jennings and Geoff Kelly

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Our hero is a boy, whose name we never learn. We know what he wants in life – with his mother exceedingly poor, and even his bed burnt to keep the two of them warm, he wants the prize offered by a down-a-mountain-and-back-up-and-down-again foot race. Winning the race and the large purse would also give him more status in the eyes of those kids that bully him, and it might even give him a voice – for he is almost mute. We quickly learn he never talks back to anyone, whatever the motivation, and can only speak aloud to himself – and, so it turns out, to a dog he rescues from a bad road accident he finds on his way up the hill to the start line… Full Review

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Review of

Grave Matter by Juno Dawson and Alex T Smith

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Since Eliza died, since the night of the car crash that took her life, Sam is a broken soul. He is lost without the girl he loves, feeling as though a part of him died that night too. But he is desperate and he cannot live without Eliza. He remembers his estranged Aunt Marie and her peculiar healing powers and wonders if she might be able to help him. However, finding his Aunt Marie leads him to discover the Milk Man, which causes Sam in his grieving state to make a pact with forces he doesn't understand. Things soon turn complicated as supernatural powers start to change Sam's life in more ways than he bargained for. Full Review

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Review of

The Last Days of Archie Maxwell by Annabel Pitcher

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Archie Maxwell was shocked when his parents told him that they were getting divorced. It wasn't that Dads leaving was that unusual: Leon's Dad had left and so had Mo's. It was why he was leaving and Archie was embarrassed that his sister had suspected that their father was gay some time ago. Both of his sisters are sad to see their father leave, but they don't seem to have any problem with the why and they tell their friends. But Archie daren't tell the lads at school: the bullying is bad enough as it is. And then there's the problem of Tia, whom he really fancies but he can't say anything about it. What Tia really needs is a friend: it's just about the first anniversary of the day on which her brother committed suicide by throwing himself in front of a train on the line which runs at the back of Archie's house. Full Review

link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/Bradman Secret/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21

Review of

Secret of the Stones by Tony Bradman

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Twelve-year-old Maglos has a fulfilling and happy life with his father, the High Priest of Stonehenge. However, everything changes when his Uncle Tigran murders Maglos's father at the mid-summer festival before turning to do the same to Maglos. As the axe is about to fall, two strangers intervene warning Tigran that the Gods will be angry if he spills the blood of a child. Tigran allows the strangers to take Maglos away as their slave. What Tigran doesn't realise is that these two men carry the secret of the stones – a secret that they pass onto Maglos and which he will ultimately use against his uncle. Full Review

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Review of

Senseless by Steve Cole

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16-year-old Kenzie Mitchell, otherwise known as K-Boy, thinks his every dream has come true when he wins the chance to attend a top gaming tournament at Sensia HQ on a remote tropical island. The contestants are flown in on their own private jet and transferred by limo to the swankiest of hotels. It all seems too good to be true – which of course it is. Within hours, events start to take a sinister turn. Kenzie wakes in the night unable to see and one by one his other senses – touch, hearing, smell and taste – flicker in and out. And he's not on his own. It's happening to the other contestants too, sometimes with fatal consequences. Kenzie wants to believe it isn't really happening. He wants to believe it's just a really good virtual reality game. But with Sensia in control, the line between realities has almost entirely disappeared. Full Review

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Review of

Free Lance and the Field of Blood (Free Lance Trilogy 2) by Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell

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The world of jousting is a fierce one – survive the minor battles with the lance, either as a bonded employed Knight or as a Free Lance, and you might try your hands at the major league. There the men are stronger, the horses faster, and the ground hurts more when you hit it. But the big time also offers more that can put a humble Knight at risk – such as evil hosts, beautiful princess-types in pickles, and mysteriously successful strangers. Our nameless hero and his loyal horse, Jed, are going to be up against a lot more than they expected here… Full Review

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Review of

Worry Angels by Sita Brahmachari and Jane Ray

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Amy-May was devastated when her parents split up: she and her mother left the delightful seaside cottage where the waves had sung her to sleep and moved into a 'garden flat'. That didn't mean that it had a garden, just that it was on the ground floor. They didn't have a lot of possessions as the bailiffs had taken most of them. Her father was living in another old cottage now and hopefully, he'd be able to set up his kiln, but he wouldn't be able to home-school Amy-May. The alternative was Sandcastles Secondary School but the rather nervous Amy was considered to be too anxious to start at the school full time. As a gentle introduction to schooling, she went to Grace's art school instead. Full Review

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Review of

Nellie Choc-Ice, Penguin Explorer (Little Gems) by Jeremy Strong and Jamie Smith

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Meet Nellie Choc-Ice. Thus named by her grandparents (and grandparents have a habit in this book of making unusual names for their grandchildren, whichever species they belong to), she is a pretty little Macaroni penguin, complete with pink feet, bright yellow eyebrows and a woolly hat with the world's biggest pompom on the end. She has a habit of going exploring and finding out what's over the next ridge in the ice, and the next, and the next. But when disaster happens and the ice she is on is knocked off Antarctica by a submarine, even she can have no idea as to where she will end up… Full Review

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