Books to Aid Reading

Here is a selection of books to help and encourage reluctant and struggling readers.

Read Zone

ReadZone really ensure there are books for all ages and interests and they have produced a huge number of new titles in 2015/6 - take a look at their website to see them all. The Read Zone is "an independent publishing company specialising in fast-track fiction for children and young people. We will cater for all abilities, from struggling to fluent readers, from 5 to 25 years old. Our main aims are to improve literacy and to foster a love of reading. How will we do this? By offering a range of levels and genres, page-turning storytelling, modern, fresh design and high-quality production. By commissioning only the best authors and illustrators and by consulting with reading experts. By ensuring that we have the right books for even the most reluctant reader."

Emery the Explorer: A Jungle Adventure by Louise John

When the postman delivers half of a mysterious treasure map through Emery's letterbox he knows that a new adventure is about to begin. The trail leads him deep into the jungle. Will Emery succeed in finding the treasure before Dex, his biggest rival? This is one in ReadZone's Fiction Express series: 'e-books are published in weekly chapters at 3 pm (UK time) each Friday. At the end of every cliffhanging chapter there are voting options to decide where the plot should go next. The readers have the following Monday and Tuesday to read each chapter in school, and will vote by 3 pm on Tuesday afternoon. The author then writes the next chapter, in ‘real time’, according to what the readers chose.' And after that, the book is published for everyone to enjoy - just imagine the excitement of contributing to the story and then seeing it in print! A brilliant concept.

C.O.R.G.I. and the Pursuit of the Prince's Pants by Ian Billings 

C.O.R.G.I. are, by day, ordinary pets (with an extraordinary owner!); by night though, they become a crack team of canine agents. So when Prince Cedric's ceremonial pants go missing, it's time for C.O.R.G.I. to come to the rescue. Can they avert an international incident? As this hilarious story romps to its conclusion, I think every reader will be very surprised to learn who the pants thief really is! Huge fun!

Friends? (Right Now!) by Dee Phillips

This hugely topical book deals with a topic of vital importance; one that affects many children and young people - online or cyber bullying. A group of popular teenage girls begin an online bullying campaign. The story is told from the point of view of a "bystander" who has always known the girl who is being bullied. Will she step in to help or go along with the bullying campaign so she doesn’t lose her friends? 'Right Now! is a series of 40-page stories, containing no more than 600 words each, that are intended for striving readers who struggle with traditional classroom fiction. Each title contains colourful high-impact graphics and cutting-edge design, which adds drama to every page. The gripping realism of each story draws the reader in and the endings are ambiguous, allowing students to debate what's next in a series of activities designed to explore the subject further.'

Goodbye (Right Now!) by Dee Phillips

Lucy can't shake off the shadow of her previous boyfriend - wherever she with her new boyfriend, she sees her previous boyfriend, Lloyd. Lloyd's always there, just in view watching her. Can she move on and enjoy her new relationship? There's an unexpected twist at the end of the story. At the end of the book, there is a series of really useful writing and discussion prompts which help pupils explore the story and invite them to put their own spin on it. Powerful illustrations are a key feature of the Right Now! books; they draw the reader in and help to tell the story, encouraging even reluctant readers.

Eject (Right Now!) by Dee Phillips

A young fighter pilot is lost in the Afghan desert, waiting for rescue and desperately trying to evade capture by the enemy. As the story unfolds he tells us, in flashback, about the mission that went wrong and how his plane was brought down by enemy fire, forcing him to eject from his jet. The sparseness of the text, designed for struggling readers, is very effective in this context and it couples well with the dramatic illustrations to provide a compelling short novel. 'Right Now! is a special series of low word count fiction books for teenagers with a reading age of 6 to 8 years. With bright illustrations and minimal text, these titles cover current and exciting topics that will appeal to young teenagers, where one moment could change your life forever!'

Fight (Right Now!) by Dee Phillips

Low word count definitely doesn't mean low interest in this series - the short but gripping stories focus on topics of interest to teens and do an excellent job of encouraging them to read. It’s Saturday night. I'm outside the club. If he wants to fight, I'm ready ... The story is told from alternative viewpoints of Kris and Ben and it is stark and compelling with a dramatic conclusion that leaves the reader guessing. Prompts at the end of the book (as with all in the series) are full of excellent ideas to stimulate discussion and think about the story.

The Finest Pharaoh of All! (Timeliners) by Stewart Ross

Timeliners are an excellent blend of fact and fiction. Ancient Egyptian Queen Hatsheput, the queen is married to her half-brother King Thutmose II. She dreams of power, wealth and peace - but these can only come about if she can seize the throne. Excitingly told by a very good storyteller, the world of Ancient Egypt is vividly brought alive. The chapters are short - only two or three pages - and I like the fact that the contents page gives a summary of the chapter. This will be a good aid for reluctant readers, as they can refresh their memory on what has happened when they come back to continue reading. Supplementing the story, readers will be informed by facts that introduce the characters and the setting, a timeline, what happens next and a very useful selection explaining new words. Produced on good quality paper and with an attractive cover, this is a very good story to engage readers and give them an insight into Ancient Egypt. Timeliners puts the story back into history. Each exciting book brings the past alive by linking key events to a fast-moving narrative.

Beware the King! (Timeliners) by Stewart Ross

This is the story of Henry VIII, and his ill-fated love for Anne Boleyn. Henry is tired of his marriage to Catherine of Aragon, who has failed to give him a son; Anne Boleyn catches his eye and he determines to make her his wife. Anne is in love and cannot see no reason to beware of the king... but we all know what happened. The story is well told; it will grip the reader as well as giving a good insight into Tudor history through the timeline, supporting facts, glossary and portrait gallery which depicts the main characters. In the same series is Dear Mum, I Miss You! (Timeliners), which tells the story of Grace who is determined to stay in London with her mother, despite the Blitz. But when their Battersea home is bombed during an air raid, and they lose everything, Grace agrees to stay with her Aunt Emily. But life is strange - Aunt Emily just doesn't talk; but when she finally does, Grace finds happiness. The book gives a vivid picture of wartime life as well as being a touching story. The accompanying factfiles and other historical information make this a perfect book for any student learning about World War II. This series is really excellent, with its combination of fact and fiction to inform and entertain. Beautifully produced too.

Deena's Dreadful Day (Fiction Express) by Simon Cheshire

Deena is preparing for her big moment a part in the local talent contest but everything's going wrong. The only one who seems to understand is her dog, Bert. Will Deena make it to the theatre in time, and will her magic tricks work, or will her dreadful day end in disaster? The story is well-paced, and with its short chapters and large font with plenty of white space, it's ideal for new readers. "The Fiction Express range of books offers fast-action stories for children of age 6+. Some of Britain’s best-loved authors have created some unforgettable characters, rich and exciting storylines, cliff-hanging chapter endings and gripping finales. Fiction Express books have been carefully graded into four categories, according to reading age: Purple (reading age 6+), Orange (reading age 8+), Red (reading age 9+) and Blue (reading age 10+). The four levels combine into a comprehensive reading programme for KS1-2 and beyond." This book is in the Purple category, for reading age 6+.

The Pirate's Secret (Fiction Express) by Stewart Ross

This exciting tale is the story of Arden Tregorey who sets out in search of his father's 'golden secret', after his father is kidnapped. It's a long and dangerous journey across the 5000 miles of dangerous Atlantic Ocean, and every chapter ends in suspense, drawing the reader in to continue and find out what happens. Will Arden succeed in finding his only living relative? This is an Orange category book, for readers of 8+. "Fiction Express is an original platform for publishing children's fiction, as it allows readers to determine the course of the plot, in real time, whilst stories are being written. Fiction Express for Schools e-books are published in weekly episodes each Friday on the website. At the end of every cliffhanging episode readers are given voting options to decide where the plot should go next. They vote online by 3 pm the following Tuesday. The winning vote is then conveyed to the author, who then writes the next episode, in ‘real time’, according to what the readers chose. Due to popular demand, Fiction Express has increased the number of e-books published each year to 18 from January 2015. This means that there will be 6 e-books each term at different reading levels (ranging from reading age 6 to 10+). The idea is to get readers actively engaged with the plot and with the author, to use prediction to try and guess what happens next, and to be involved in writing activities – writing the next episode (or all the optional episodes) and seeing how it compares with the actual, for example."

The Vampire Quest (Fiction Express) by Simon Cheshire

James is just an ordinary boy, and so, it seems, is his best friend Vince is a bit... until it turns out that Vince is a vampire; his family are vampires too, and the people who live at No. 38. There are everywhere! But they are quite harmless, as long as there are plenty of supplies of Feed-N-Gulp, the magical vegetarian vampire brew. But when supplies run out... It's a fun and lively story which will really appeal to readers; well-written, fast-moving and with just a little frisson of fear. An Orange book, for readers of 8+. Like all the books in the series, there is an attractive cover and the book is printed on good quality paper, making it enjoyable to read. The Fiction Express concept is a brilliant one - a great way to get children involved and to encourage their own creativity.

The Gloom Lord (Fiction Express) by Cavan Scott

A Gloom Lord and his army of security-bots are threatening to spread a wave of misery across the entire galaxy. First target - Lunar Land, the brand new amusement park on the Moon. Can visiting schoolchildren Will and Jackie, and their alien friend Thran, stop him before it's too late? Or will everyone become as gloomy as the Gloom Lord himself? It's an interesting concept, one that will engage children as they enjoy the fast-moving, suspense-filled story. This is a Blue category book, for readers of 10+, as is Clock by Andrew G Taylor. Harry Boyd can stop time - literally; this is a very useful ability for one such as he, who lives a life of petty crime under the very noses of shoppers at the Gatesworth Shopping Centre. But when he is caught in the act, things start to go badly wrong - not just for Harry, but for planet earth. Another gripping story in this excellent series.

Grind by Dee Phillips

This is one in the exciting "Right Now!" series which are low word count fiction books for teenagers with a reading age of 6 to 8 years. With bright illustrations and minimal text, these titles cover current and exciting topics that will appeal to young teenagers. Very simple text manages to convey a wealth of meaning; the contemporary style of the illustrations is perfect. Reluctant and struggling readers will find a really good story here - but one they can read; perfect for building confidence. The whole look of the book has been well thought-out; appealing illustrations and credible stories combine perfectly.

Athens is Saved! (Timeliners) by Stewart Ross

In 2015, Read Zone launched their new historical fiction series Timeliners with three exciting titles about key events in Greek, Roman and Viking times. Each story is a combination of real events and a fast paced fictional narrative, divided into short chapters to encourage independent reading. History is put into context by an introductory section 'The Story So Far...' and at the end 'What Happened Next'; there's also a glossary of words and a timeline; these all combine to make a highly informative book. Athens is Saved! is the story of Cimon, the legendary young athlete who ran to Athens with the news of the Greek s victory over the Persians at the Battle of Marathon. Find King Alfred (Timeliners) begins with the Viking s winter invasion of Wessex. The Saxon kingdom crumbles before them, until Alfred, one of England s true hero-kings, raises his standard amid the marshy wastes of Somerset... The excellent narration really moves the reader through the story and there's enough excitement to ensure interest is kept high. More books are planned for the future and titles will cover the Second World War, Ancient Egypt and many more historical periods. The books are a really good way to encourage an interest in history and fill a gap between texts for younger children and factual books which are of a higher reading age.

On My Way (Crossroads) by Mirjam Eppinga

This gripping graphic novel for teenagers tells the story of Davey, who wants to be a mechanic. He also wants to take driving lessons but that means he needs to get a part-time job to pay for them. He tries hard but his first attempts at work fail dismally but finally he finds his niche. It's an upbuilding and encouraging read, perfect for instilling confidence in both reading and in tackling and overcoming problems. Read Zone have published three new titles in the popular Crossroads series. These graphic novels are based on issues and events experienced by many teenagers growing up in our society today. Each book tackles a range of different issues from love and friendship to jobs and careers. The stories are told in the first person and they are accompanied by high impact graphics which really grab the attention. The books all have 48 pages and the content is an excellent fit for hi-lo readers, with a reading age of 11 years and an interest age of 15-18 year olds; the graphic novel format is the ideal way to draw in reluctant and struggling readers.

Alone with Her (Crossroads) by Mirjam Eppinga

Two more great reads, perfect for engaging teens with books, whether they struggle with reading or simply don't want to be bothered (these books could well change their minds!). Tom is in love with Eva but how can he get her to notice him. He sends her a text asking if she wants to go to the movies. But, by accident, he sends the message to her friend instead. Now she thinks that Tom likes her! Topical How will Tom sort out this one? Also in the series - Secretly in Love (Crossroads): Lättläst på engelska Meryl has liked Roy since they were at school, but he always had lots of girlfriends. She doesn’t think she stands a chance, but then Roy appears at the circus where she works. Great stories, attractive presentation and stunning graphics - a winning combination.

No Heroics (Thriller Shots) by Liz Holliday

Just because teens struggle to read, there's no reason why they should miss out on all the excitement books have to offer - and Thriller Shots are superbly exciting reads. Michelle is at her Saturday job at a local jewellery store when masked gunmen break in... Thriller Shots is a fantastic collection of four thriller short stories, each about 1500 words long, offering a quick hit of adrenalin for readers who need to be encouraged to pick up a book. The atmospheric black and white illustrations are superb - try getting reluctant readers interested through these for starters. Other titles include A Thousand Words (Thriller Shots) and Et Tu Brute? (Thriller Shots); two more fast-paced and highly stimulating reads which will captivate their audience and hopefully, encourage them to seek out more books now they know how enjoyable reading really is.

Into the Dark (Crossroads) by Johan Van Caeneghem

Told through the eyes of Ben, whose sister died in a motorbike accident when out with her boyfriend Michael. Michael survived and put the accident behind him but Ben wants revenge. When Ben sees Michael standing next to his motorbike, he threatens him with a knife... Crossroads is a fast-moving series of graphic novels, based on real-life events; each title contains colourful high-impact graphics and cutting-edge design. With all the pace and excitement teen readers demand, but making use of accessible language and the short story format, along with plentiful illustrations to make the book suitable for reluctant and struggling readers.

Frankenstein (Express Classics) retold by Pauline Francis

Frankenstein is the chilling story of a scientist, Frankenstein, who succeeds in creating a fearful monster, only to find that the monster holds a terrible power over him and the people he loves. Told here in short chapters, this is the ideal way to make classics accessible for struggling readers. Express Classics offer a quick way into a range of exciting stories. Fast-moving and accessible, each story is a shortened, dramatically illustrated version of the classic novel, which loses none of the strength and flavour of the original. Express Classics include biographical details of the original author,  an 8 page glossary and exercises to do; these are really useful features which classroom teachers will welcome

Pet to School Day by Hilary Robinson

It's Pet to School Day today but Mr Spink's pet is too wild to bring to school! What could it be? And is Mr Spinkas brave as he seems? This amusing story is great fun for early readers, and the lively illustrations work excellently with the text. Magpies are fun stories in 150 words that are written for emergent readers. They provide a range of stories using high frequency words, repetition and rich language for children who are starting to enjoy reading. Magpies are Level 3 of the five level ReadZone reading path.

Gladiator (Yesterday's Voices) by Dee Phillips

Captured when his tribe are resisting the Roman invaders, a young fighter is taken to Rome from Britain as a prisoner of war. He must win his freedom in the arenas of Rome, fighting as a gladiator. Ideal for struggling or reluctant readers, Yesterday's Voices offers manageable yet thought-provoking historical fiction with stunning illustrations. I like the white font on dark background used in part of the book but wonder whether the black font on coloured backgrounds will work for dyslexic readers - it would be a shame if they miss out on these excellent stories. Each story includes a spread that gives the reader the factual background to the historical theme or event explored in the story, making the books good curricular support.

Kicking Off (Bad Boyz) by Alan Durant

Follow the exploits of seven football-mad youngsters - six boys, one girl - from a variety of ethnic backgrounds and, in the main, from single-parent or problem families as they attempt to win the Little League cup and go on tour to France! Notable and commendable for its inclusiveness, this is perfectly in tune with today's young people and what they want from a book, so a great way to encourage reading. The young people are always in trouble - can football keep them out of it?

Remy Brunel and the Circus Horse (Fiction Express) by Sharon Gosling

An enticing peek inside the exciting world of the circus, with its larger than life characters. Rémy Brunel loves her life in the circus riding elephants, practising tightrope tricks and dazzling audiences. But when two new magicians arrive at the circus, everyone is wary of them. What exactly are they up to? What secrets are they trying to hide? Should Rémy and her new friend Matthias trust them? ReadZone is the official publisher of the Fiction Express books. Fiction Express is an original platform for publishing children’s fiction, as it allows readers to determine the course of the plot, in real time, while the stories are being written. The fast-paced, exciting stories are written by well-known authors.

Red Squirrel Books from Barrington Stoke

Red Squirrel wants his books to be for everyone, because he knows that sharing stories is one of the best things families can do for their children. He has been busy gathering a cluster of dyslexia-friendly features to support parents and carers who do not read confidently so that they too can enjoy the books with their children.
Red Squirrel Books use a number of measures to increase accessibility for individuals with dyslexia or reading issues.
These include:
• A unique dyslexia-friendly font
• A gently tinted, detail-free background behind the text to reduce glare and stress on the eye
• Slightly increased character spacing to make letters easier to read
• Clean syntax to minimise potential obstacles to comprehension
• Standard left-to-right and top-to-bottom layout for text to aid with following the story in sequence.
The great news for confident readers is that many of these features will help children to join in with the story, recognise letters and words and follow along with the text.

Itch Scritch Scratch (Red Squirrel Picture Books) by Eleanor Updale

Uh Oh The kids have got nits and the mummies are going mad with the nit-combs and some very strange remedies- but these nits don't care! With a rhyming text that trips off the tongue, this fun picture book has an easy-read font and is ideal for supporting parents and carers with dyslexia so they can share the joy of reading with their children; children will find the books easy to read themselves too due to the special features (listed above).

All I Said Was by Michael Morpurgo

What better theme for a book designed to 'grow a love of reading' than a story which is a celebration of the wonderful power books have to take us wherever our imagination chooses. This story about a boy who becomes a bird has wonderful illustrations by Ross Collins that draw the reader into the heart of the story. Top authors feature so that everyone can enjoy the very best storytelling. This is a truly excellent innovative approach which addresses the issues of adults who want to share books with their children but struggle to do so.

Franklin Watts

Reader Development is one of Franklin Watts' specialisations; the list offers titles on a wide array of subjects for beginner readers. The books in The EDGE range are an excellent way to encourage reluctant readers. The texts, fiction and non fiction, are exciting and fast-moving and there are plenty of illustrations.

How to Handle Your School (EDGE) by Roy Apps

A lively book about a topic which will be close to the heart of many young people - how to cope with the many and varied teachers and fellow pupils who will be encountered at school. Quirky and eye-c atching presentation liberally sprinkled with humour gives plenty of sound practical advice for all those tricky situations. Plenty of interactivity with lots of quizzes that will make the reader ponder on all sorts of aspects of school life.

Must Know Stories: Level 1: Goldilocks and the Three Bears by Barrie Wade

A traditional retelling of the story, with plenty of pictures making it a good transition level from picture books. The book includes background to the story and 'Be in the story! to encourage children to use their imaginations and make themselves part of the story. This is a Level 1 story, told in under 500 words, for children to read independently. This is one in an extensive hardback series, ideal for the classroom or school library to build up a comprehensive early reading collection of some of the world's favourite traditional tales.

EDGE: World War Two Short Stories: Bridge of Death by Craig Simpson

A pacy, fast-moving story in the EDGE series, which is designed to get young readers enthused about reading. D-Day, 6th June 1944 - 10 minutes after midnight. A small British force is flying over Occupied France on what is virtually a suicide mission - they must capture a bridge before German forces guarding it can blow it up. There's no room for error. The story is told from both a British and German perspective giving a different aspect to the story, and providing an engaging read. Comic strip type illustrations add to the appeal.

Virus Outbreak (EDGE: You Choose If You Live or Die) by Simon Chapman

It's up to you! If you make the right choices, you live, if not, you die - it's as simple as that. A dramatic story - a deadly virus is sweeping across the country that could make all humans extinct. The government is collapsing. People are dying. Are you infected? Whatever else happens, you must survive! You've been pushed into a car by your parents - you've got to escape! But now the driver is looking ill... An exciting way of getting children really engaged with books - they can have a different outcome every time they read.

Breathe and You Die! (EDGE - A Rivets Short Story) by Andrew Fusek Peters

Short, sharp and action-packed - just what reluctant boy readers need to encourage them to enjoy the wonder of books. Matt wakes up alone, in a room rapidly filling with poison gas. How did he get here? And more importantly, how is he going to escape? Breathe and You Die! is a lightning-fast thriller with a plot involving poison gas and international intrigue. Reader-friendly, with text well spread out with plenty of white space; a clear font and short chapters.

You Choose If You Live or Die: Prisoner Escape (EDGE) by Simon Chapman

This series puts the reader into the driving seat by offering various options as to how the story should proceed - you decide! This is an excellent device for engaging reluctant readers with the added benefit that it encourages re-reading of the story to make it happen differently. It would also make for excellent classroom discussion as pupils discuss how 'their' story turned out. In Prisoner Escape you, the reader, are on trial for a crime you didn't commit, but nobody believes you. So it's up to you to clear the mystery and save yourself - it makes for exciting reading! The dilemma facing you in EDGE: You Choose If You Live or Die: Jungle Crash is finding yourself in a jungle facing deadly predators and a dangerous gang of drug dealers when your plane crashes.

Slipstream Graphic Fiction Level 1: Assassin City (EDGE) by Jonny Zucker

Milo is in Alpha City and it's his 16th birthday. When you are summoned to the all-powerful Council, you must take the job they assign you... what is Milo's fate? Luke has an uncanny power - when he looks at a person's photo and then rubs his face, he takes on the person's appearance. Read about what happens to him in Switch Face. The Sword of Legend appears only once a year and Hans must find it if he is to defeat Sir Murdlan and take over his father's kingdom. The 300-word texts of these three stories in Slipstream Level 1 are levelled for readers with a reading age of 5-7 but the exciting storylines will engage older readers. The graphic format is appealing to reluctant readers and the full colour, exciting stories and striking characters are just right for the audience.

Robbed! (EDGE: Slipstream Short Fiction Level 1) by Anne Cassidy

Lizzie's brother Tommy is late. She is told that Big Alex is taking him to the cash machine. Lizzie guesses that Tommy is being robbed by Big Alex, but does she have the right person? A short, gripping story (with a topical theme), enhanced by the colour drawings. "Slipstream is a new generation of reading resources specifically designed for struggling and reluctant readers. Through exciting and carefully levelled texts, Slipstream enables readers to accelerate their reading experience. This illustrated story is part of Slipstream LEVEL 1. The 300-word text is levelled for readers with a reading age of 5-7, but its engaging content makes it perfect for a wide range of older readers too."

White Water Wipe Out (EDGE: Slipstream Short Fiction Level 1) Roger Hurn

Rick and Ali are on a school trip. They go white water rafting and it is brilliant - until Rick decides to disobey orders and try the out-of-bounds Hell Hole. Will Ali be able to save his friend? The full page colour illustrations in this series are excellent to encourage reluctant readers - combined with the short sentences and just two or three of them on each page, readers will be given confidence and be encouraged to progress with their reading.

Wolfhold (EDGE: Slipstream Short Fiction Level 1) by Steve Barlow and Steve Skidmore

Two extremely popular writers for children come to the EDGE series with a book children will find a great incentive to reading. Tom wakes up in a strange bed, in a strange house, in a strange place. There are no phones, papers or internet, and no way out... Where is he? And how did he get there? Can the mysterious Megan help him remember and solve the mystery and will he ever escape?

Space (EDGE: Slipstream Non-Fiction Level 1) by Anne Rooney

Do you know which starship is carrying a message to aliens? Or what an exoplanet is? Find out in Space - filled with facts about our universe and beyond. It's commonly known that many children prefer to read non fiction and these books ensure those children are well catered for with easy to read carefully levelled text and plenty of good quality photos. This would also make a good project source for reluctant or struggling readers, with its accessible information.

Daring Escapes (EDGE: Slipstream Non-Fiction Level 1) by Anne Rooney

Just the sort of thing to appeal to youngsters - all sorts of seemingly impossible situations and how people escaped. Do you know how Aron Ralston escaped when his arm was trapped by a rock? Or what happened to Bethany Hamilton when her arm was bitten off by a shark? Then find out in Daring Escapes - filled with facts about some of the world's bravest survival stories.The layout is eye-catching, especially the way photos are presented within a frame of old-fashioned film.

How to Spend a Billion (EDGE: Slipstream Non-Fiction Level 1) by Anne Rooney

We can all dream! Perhaps you've wondered what goes into one of the world's most expensive ice creams?Or how much it costs to buy your own private beach, or private island? No? Then find out these and more fascinating - and almost unbelievable - facts in How to Spend a Billion - filled with facts about some of the world's most expensive items. This book and the two above are part of Slipstream LEVEL 1. The 300-word text is levelled for readers with a reading age of 5-7, but its engaging content makes it perfect for a wide range of older readers too. All texts are levelled by reading experts Dee Reid and Diana Bentley.

War Dog (EDGE - Rivets) by Chris Ryan

Reading Age: 8-9 Interest Age: 8-14
Rivets - a good title for this series of short stories which really grip the reader's attention, reluctant or not. Jamie, a young amputee veteran, eloquently speaks directly to the reader and draws you in to the book right from the start. He was in  Afghanistan, fighting the Taliban and as a result, lost his leg. But without brave sniffer dog Charlie and his handler Lance Corporal Sam Maguire, he would have lost his life. A compelling read which really makes you aware of the consequences of war and its human impact.

Street Dance (EDGE : Street) by Rita Storey

Once again, Franklin Watts have brought reluctant readers a series which will really appeal. This is your chance to get the inside track on the hottest street scenes today. The book includes Incredible dance moves; Hot video links; Inspirational photos; Q & As; Star performers; Competitions and Dance styles to give the enthusiast everything they need to be a street dance star of the future! Minimal text and plenty of photos make for an attractive and accessible book.

Greatest Rock Bands (EDGE: Slipstream Non-Fiction Level 1) by Anne Rooney

Where the EDGE series really scores is in its coverage of topics that really interest and enthuse young people, thereby rewarding them for putting in what may be quite an effort in order to read. This title epitomises that perfectly, as most young people will be only too keen to read about rock bands. The bands include The Rolling Stones, The Who, Queen, AC/DC, Nirvana and Arctic Monkeys. There are just a few simple sentences about each plus some excellent photos. This book is part of Slipstream LEVEL 1. The 300-word text is levelled for readers with a reading age of 5-7, but its engaging content makes it perfect for a wide range of older readers too.

World's Fastest (EDGE: Slipstream Non-Fiction Level 1) by Anne Rooney

Another topic to capture the interest of even reluctant readers - not just vehicles but also the fastest creatures in the natural world are featured. Short simple text and attractive layout make this series as appealing to older reluctant readers as to younger keen readers - good as early readers as well as for encouraging older children.

Super Animals (EDGE: Slipstream Non-Fiction Level 1) by Anne Rooney

There are some fascinating facts in this slim book - the Arctic Tern flies 800,000 kilometres in its life; the angler fish makes its own light and the hognose snake confuses its predators by smelling dead! The carefully selected text makes this an easy read and the photos add greatly to the interest.

The Nightmare Eater (EDGE - A Rivets Short Story) by William Hussey

Scary! Tomas is the victim of a bully who makes him face his worst fear - a fear that visits him in the middle of the night and leaves him gasping for breath. Tomas enters the House of Horrors and his nightmares come true in this short but terrifying novel which keeps the reader gripped and questioning throughout.

Get Yourself Gone (EDGE - A Rivets Short Story) by Oisin Mcgann

Rivets are short stories that do as they say - rivet the reader to the gripping stories, perfect to enthuse reluctant readers with an easy but terrifying read. Vulgar Pluck is in trouble. Big trouble. He's tangled with the wrong people and now he's on the run from Psycho Cyrus and his gang of Lost Boys. Vulgar needs to get out of town - fast. But first he's got one last job to do. And he's got to do it quick, before some really dark magic is unleashed...

Beasts and Monsters (EDGE : Ultimate 20) by Tracey Turner

This series takes an interesting approach in an effort to encourage reluctant readers. This eminently collectable series uses a card-game-based design to allow readers to compete against each other in a fact face-off with an ultimate line up of the best-of-the-best. Play by flicking through the book, choosing one of your Ultimate 20, then challenging your friends. This title is packed with facts about a range of strange creatures, including kelpies, unicorns and gorgons - learn the facts (a great way to encourage memorising) and then challenge your friends. Each stat has a ranking - see who gets the most.

Demon Sea: Blood Crown Quest: 3 (EDGE : I, Hero Quests) by Steve Barlow and Steve Skidmore

This series puts the reader in charge - a good way to engage reluctant readers - and they may well read the books more than once, as the story will be different every time, depending on the options chosen. The quest is to find the four Blood Crown rubies and in this story the reader flies on the back of his gryphon to the Sea of Oblivion in the west to find the Ruby of Magic, before the Red Queen can track it down. Will you make the right choices?

City of the Dead: Blood Crown Quest: 4 (EDGE : I, Hero Quests) by Steve Barlow and Steve Skidmore

The final quest in this series is, almost inevitably, the most challenging as the reader travels to the Ciry of the Dead (Necropolis), home of the Red Queen, in order to gain the last of the Blood Crown rubies. Part story (and a very exciting story), part game, this really gets the reader involved as they make decisions every step of the way.

Tom Daley (EDGE - Dream to Win) by Roy Apps T

he Dream to Win series picks up on those sports stars that young people really want to know about and they are a great way to inspire youngsters to take part in sport. They show the determination needed to succeed and how the personality has shown that. Tom had a dream - to become a top British diver. Find out how he achieved his dream and what happened on the way. Easy to read but nonetheless inspiring, there is plenty here to encourage reading./td>

Virus Outbreak (EDGE: You Choose If You Live or Die) by Simon Chapman

This is a super series to encourage readers to really engage with the story. The reader is part of an exciting scenario and there are many options to choose from - each option takes you to a different part of the book and therefore changes the story. Each time the book is read, it could be a completely different story! A deadly virus is sweeping across the country that could make all humans extinct. The government is collapsing. People are dying. Are you infected? Whatever else happens, you must survive! You've been pushed into a car by your parents - you've got to escape! But now the driver is looking ill...

Alien Invasion (EDGE: You Choose If You Live or Die) by Simon Chapman

EDGE books are designed to attract and draw in the reader and what better way than by putting them in control of the story? Strange objects have been appearing across the Earth, and then people start disappearing. The aliens are coming, and they don't want to make peace. They're here to kill us all! This book isn't like others you may have read - inside you make the choices. Can you help to stop the alien invasion? Can you save the human race? Only you can decide if you live or die inside! These are pacy, hard-hitting and dramatic stories which engage the reader from the very start.

Demon Streak (EDGE: Slipstream Graphic Fiction Level 2) by Jonny Zucker and Steve Sanpson

A topic which will be one of concern to may young people - Rob has bullied Mark since they were young children and never misses a chance to be cruel. When a demon visits him in the night, Rob has the perfect way to make Mark's life unbearable. But Mark has his own demons to turn to... "Slipstream is a new generation of reading resources specifically designed for struggling and reluctant readers. Through exciting and carefully levelled texts, Slipstream enables readers to accelerate their reading experience. The 350-word text of Level 2 books is levelled for readers with a reading age of 7-9, but its engaging content makes it perfect for a wide range of older readers too."

Full Metal Hero (EDGE: Slipstream Graphic Fiction Level 2) by Jonny Zucker and Dan Boultwood

When Jet is caught in an explosion he comes through unscathed. He learns that he is a robot built to carry out orders of a powerful corporation - and they will stop at nothing to get him back... The comic strip format is perfect for engaging reluctant readers who find this accessible and enjoyable. The storylines through the series are fast-moving and contemporary and very appealing as a way to encourage reluctant readers to enjoy books..

Terror Beast (EDGE: Slipstream Graphic Fiction Level 2) by Jonny Zucker and Mack Chater

Chime is a world-champion martial artist, but he has yet to face his toughest challenge! A beast is loose and causing havoc, and with the help of Master Go and Erla, Chime must go into the jungle to tame the terror that lives there... The eye-catching covers and excellent graphics are perfect for the target audience.

Ellie Simmonds (Edge - Dream to Win) by Roy Apps

Ellie Simmonds is an inspirational swimmer who at just 17 won two gold medals at the London 2012 Paralympics - and she is the proud holder of many more medals too. This is one of a series of short inspirational biographies which show how sheer determination has its rewards as sports personalities reach the peak of their sport. It's an excellent series which is an easy read and provides just enough information to stimulate reading and encourage further research.

The Wimp's Guide to Extreme Sports (Edge) by Tracey Turner

Tracey Turner has written many non-fiction books for children and her light-hearted approach is a great way to encourage children to read. The Wimp's Guides are perfect for children who are reluctant to try new things. This book combines information about extreme sports on land, water and in the air with passages that show just how the reader would feel when, for example, bobsleighing. It's a great way to get the adrenaline rush without actually doing it! The book is illustrated throughout with amusing cartoons, and there are lots of facts and figures for the lover of trivia.

Justin Bieber (EDGE - Teen Stars) by Liz Gogerly

Teen Stars - a great series for those who want to read about young celebrities and who want a bit more background than the celebrity magazines give. It is, of course, a good way to encourage reading, as youngsters are avid for information about stars. The presentation is appealing, with snippets of fun information presented in stars, plenty of photos and quotes. Facts are neatly summarised in the Fan Guide, and there is an index and glossary.

Football Legend (EDGE: Slipstream Short Fiction Level 2) by David and Helen Orme

Rob has a secret up his sleeve - his granddad used to play football for England, and the bullies who teased Rob for spending time with an old man reap their just rewards! "Slipstream is a new generation of reading resources specifically designed for struggling and reluctant readers. Through exciting and carefully levelled texts, Slipstream enables readers to accelerate their reading experience.  The 350-word text of Slipstream Level 2 is levelled for readers with a reading age of 7-9, but its engaging content makes it perfect for a wide range of older readers too. All texts are levelled by reading experts Dee Reid and Diana Bentley."

Fishing for Trouble (EDGE: Slipstream Short Fiction Level 2) by David and Helen Orme

To keep out of trouble and away from the gangs on the estate, Will and Adam go fishing. But then they fish something out of the water that seems guaranteed to lead to trouble... Titles that will catch the interest of reluctant readers and enticing cover artwork show a great understanding of the potential market.

Vampires are So Boring! (EDGE: Slipstream Short Fiction Level 2) by David and Helen Orme

An eerie beginning - 'In the churchyard.... the lid of the tomb slid open...' An opening guaranteed to grab the reader's attention, however reluctant. The vampire needs human blood and two girls, who want a vampire boyfriend, are on hand... but they turn the tables in this light-hearted story. Short chapters, a few sentences on each page, plus engaging artwork combine to make an attractive series.

Crazy Food (EDGE: Slipstream Non-Fiction Level 2) by Anne Rooney

Bacon ice cream? Fried rattlesnake? Caterpillar soup? These are just a few of the weird and wacky foods colourfully depicted in this interesting book, which will encourage young readers to read. Brief text in boxes, complemented by plentiful photos make this book appealing to any age. "Slipstream is a new generation of reading resources specifically designed for struggling and reluctant readers. Through exciting and carefully levelled texts, Slipstream enables readers to accelerate their reading experience. This book (and the two which follow) is part of Slipstream LEVEL 2. The 350-word text is levelled for readers with a reading age of 7-9, but its engaging content makes it perfect for a wide range of older readers too."

Bizarre Buildings (EDGE: Slipstream Non-Fiction Level 2) by Anne Rooney

The cover is guaranteed to capture attention, with its photo of a building that looks as though it has been dropped upside down. Some more of the unbelievable buildings are a hotel made of ice, a building ripped in half and a factory that looks like a basket. A fascinating read that will intrigue those of any age, and the presentation is such that all ages will find it appealing.

Wacky Sports (EDGE: Slipstream Non-Fiction Level 2) by Anne Rooney

Another collection of intriguing facts, aimed at reluctant and struggling readers and with a high interest content that crosses age barriers. Ever heard of underwater cycling, extreme ironing or pumpkin racing? These intriguing topics will whet readers' appetites and encourage them to find out more. Workbook: Level 2 (Edge Slipstream) accompanies these books.

Sands of Blood: Blood Crown Quest (Edge I, Hero Quests) by Steve Barlow and Steve Skidmore

Reluctant readers are drawn into this series by the promise that they can decide their own destiny. The inspired pairing of Barlow and Skidmore have been responsible for many successful series, and they manage to pitch their books perfectly to captivate the reader and draw them into the story. The Red Queen has seized the Ruby of Death and raised an army of the dead. Now, with her husband, the necromancer Mortha, they plan to find the remaining three rubies and cast a permanent shadow over the world. It's down to the reader to find the rubies...

The Wimp's Guide to Jungle Survival (Edge) by Tracey Turner

This is an excellent series to encourage an interest in reading. The catchy titles are a great start and encourage reluctant readers to take a look. Luckily, we are unlikely to come across gigantic spiders or toxic frogs in our everyday lives - but if we do, this book helps us to know how to protect ourselves. It's great fun to read, with plenty of lively illustrations and lots of variety in font and layout to make it appealing.

The Wimp's Guide to Killer Animals (Edge) by Tracey Turner

It's official - there's nothing wrong with being a wimp! There are times when it makes perfect sense to be terrified. In these books you'll come face to face with scary stuff, find out the horrifying details about it, and, most importantly, learn the best way to get away from it as fast as you possibly can, by harnessing the power of your inner wimp. This title is published by Franklin Watts EDGE, which produces a range of books to get children reading with confidence. The series will appeal to children of 7+ and the subject matter is eminently suitable for older children who struggle with reading or who are reluctant to engage with books - there is nothing to make this feel like a kid's book, so no worries about street cred.

The Wimp's Guide to the Supernatural (Edge) by Tracey Turner

If you are inexperienced in the world of the supernatural, then here is the book for you - the book that shows it's OK to be - just a little - scared. Find out all you need to know about ghosts, vampires, zombies.... and how to avoid them. Lots of amusing illustrations add to the appeal of this book.  Tracey Turner is a popular author who excels at this type of book - a genre which is very popular with young readers.

Jessica Ennis (Edge - Dream to Win) by Roy Apps

After injury prevented her from competing in the 2008 Olympic Games, Jessica Ennis fought back to become the 2012 Olympic gold medal winner in the heptathlon. Read her story from her childhood years right up to when she crossed the finish line in her final event in London, 2012. This is a short, easy to read book with a high interest level. Jessica Ennis has become one of our highest profile sports personalities and children will enjoy this insight into her life. Just right to help ensure that the Olympic legacy lives on.


Dakota Fanning (Teen Stars) by Clare Hibbert

Dakota Fanning is an American actress who rose to fame following her performance in the 2001 film I Am Sam. As a child actress, she appeared in films including Man on Fire, War of the Worlds, and Charlotte's Web. From her days as a child star, right through to starting at New York University, fans can follow her life in accessible text generously illustrated with photos. Teen Stars is a great series for those who want to find out more about the teen celebrity scene. The stars featured in the series are either already established or well on the way to becoming so, meaning they will be familiar to young readers, who will enjoy learning more about the stars' backgrounds.

Justin Beiber (Teen Stars) by Liz Gogerly

Written to appeal to a young audience, and especially those who are not too enthusiastic about reading, this is just right to capture their attention. Justin Beiber is a Canadian singer-songwriter, musician, and actor with a huge fan base. Fans can find out about his childhood, how he was discovered and his successes. Each book in the series has a fan guide, a list of useful websites and a chronology of the life of the star.

Abducted (Crime Files) by Roy Apps

Faraday, Australia is a laid-back town. Nothing ever happens there. Until one day an armed gang bursts into a classroom in the town's small school. What will happen to Craig, his teacher and his classmates?  All the books in the Crime Files series are based on true stories and are written in a gritty and realistic way that will appeal to young readers and will help to encourage reluctant readers to enjoy books and reading. Plenty of black and white illustrations break up the text, increasing the accessibility of these books.

Lifters by Joe Craig

Adaq and Maya are siblings - urban professionals with a unique set of thieving skills. When Adaq lifts a package from his latest target he has no idea what he's getting into. Before he can blink, the target is lying dead on the ground and he is running for his life. A short book, at only 40 pages, yet it manages to pack a real punch - and 40 pages is plenty long enough for reluctant readers not to feel intimidated.

Max Finder: The Case of the Movie Set Mischief and Other Mysteries by Liam O'Donnell and Michael Cho

Whispering Meadows has plenty of secrets. Meet the duo that uncovers them. Amateur detective Max Finder and his aspiring journalist sidekick, Alison Santos, are on the case in this award-winning series of graphic novel 'solve-it-yourself' mysteries. Can you avoid the dead ends and red herrings to sort the victims from the villains? Test your detective skills to the max! As the young reader helps Max Finder solve his problems, they will be learning concentration and reasoning skills as well as enjoying a fast moving and exciting read.

Max Finder: The Case of the Haunted Babysitter and Other Mysteries by Craig Battle and Ramon Perez

Another collection of short stories, mainly in an attractive comic strip format in full colour, but with some pages of text. Whispering Meadows has plenty of secrets. Meet the duo that uncovers them. Amateur detective Max Finder and his aspiring journalist sidekick, Alison Santos, are on the case in this award-winning series of graphic novel "solve-it-yourself" mysteries. Can you avoid the dead ends and red herrings to sort the victims from the villains? Test your detective skills to the max!  

Armed Services (Action Force) by Jim Brush

Action Force brings together the people, weapons, vehicles, the stats and the facts in one all-action series.The three services - Army, Navy and Air Force, Working as a team, Gym and assault course training, Emergency aid supply, Reservists, Vehicles, ships and aircraft, Weapons systems, Special missions. An excellent way to encourage reading, generously illustrated with photos, and with plenty of fact boxes to split up the text.

Extreme Summer Sports (Extreme Games) by Jim Brush

Lots of action packed photography in this book about BMX, Moto-H, rally car racing and skateboarding. A great way to appeal to young readers. Highlighting the sports and stars of ESPNs X-Games extreme sports tournament, this series catapults readers into the facts, stats and action - head first!

Winter Action Sports (Extreme Games) by Jim Brush

Highlighting the sports and stars of ESPNs X-Games extreme sports tournament, this series catapults readers into the facts, stats and action - head first! Snowboarding, snowmobile racing and skiing are covered in this bright and extremely attractive well-produced book full of high-quality photos.

Forsaken by Katherine Langrish

Interest age 8-14 years/ Reading age 8-9 years
This emotional story is based on Matthew Arnold's The Forsaken Merman. Mara's mother is missing, her little brother is sick and perhaps dying, her father is grieving. It all seems hopeless - until Mara sets out on a life or death journey to bring her mother home and to reunite a merfolk family.


Warrior Number One by Andy Briggs

Carl is determined to become Warrior Number One in the online game 'Barbarianz'. He must face the Dark Lord and his five-headed dragon. But if you think that's the end of the story, then you're in for a big surprise...

'This title is published by Franklin Watts EDGE, which produces a range of books to get children reading with confidence. EDGE - for books children want to read, and books children can read.'

Rising Stars

Educational publishing specialists, Rising Stars, produce several series, spanning KS1 to KS3, to help reluctant and struggling readers. Each series' content has been written with a particular age group in mind, with age-appropriate text for struggling readers and themes relating to that specific age group.

All Star High: Fame by Helen Chapman

Interest age 9-14 years/ Reading age 7-8 years
This new series from Rising Stars is perfect to encourage young people and especially girls who have not expressed much interest in books, or who struggle with reading. All Star High is THE place for everyone who wants to be a star - musicians, dancers and actors. Zeke and Aaron are busy rehearsing for the TV talent show but things keep going wrong - why?
There is a Teacher's Book to accompany the series  All Star High Teacher's Book

All Star High: Fight by Helen Chapman

Interest age 9-14 years/ Reading age 7-8 years
Aaron loves martial arts and Claire loves Ballet. Read how a cool New York dance teacher gets them to perform together.  Perfectly geared for their market, these books are excellent classroom resources, with their glossaries and particularly the quiz with answers which is a feature of each book. The quizzes ensure that readers have got the most out of the book, but in a fun way. These are attractive books which give no hint that they are for reluctant readers.

 All Star High - Rescue


All Star High: Rescue by Helen Chapman

Interest age 9-14 years/ Reading age 7-8 years

Is All Star High under threat with the opening of a new Talent Academy in town? Carmel finds a way to avoid this by making everyone aware of All Star High. The characters reappear through the stories and are introduced in profiles at the beginning, so they become well-known to the reader. Some more in the series, which is ideal for fans of Glee and The X Factor - All Star High Help!, All Star High Shout! and All Star High Thriller They can all be purchased from the Rising Stars site.

Avalanche: Dangerous Games by Sue Graves

Interest age 10 to 14+ years, reading age 8 years
In Avalanche the team find themselves in trouble when the lack of a virus checker puts their lives at risk. Krakatoa finds them travelling back in time and in danger of being blown up. Tornado Terror finds the team terrorised by the danger of being caught up in a tornado. Bold use of colour in the comic-style illustrations give these books immediate appeal to the market and ensure that readers are happy to be seen reading the books. A glossary of terms and a quiz are useful aids to understanding. The topical nature of the stories capture the attention of readers.
Dangerous Games is an exciting range of adventure stories aimed at reluctant older readers. Set in a computer games company, the books follow designers Sima, Kojo and Tom as they test out the games for real, entering new virtual worlds and encountering exciting and sometimes deadly situations ...

The Legend in Our Team: Young Heroes by Janelle Lee and Anthony Woodward 

Reading age 9-10 years; Interest age 10-14+ years

Is cricket just a game for boys? Katie really wants to try out for the school cricket team, even though her friends think the game, and the boys who play it, are stupid. A  satisfying read, with plenty of appealing pictures and a storyline to appeal to young people.
Young Heroes is a series of action-packed chapter books to get boys reading! These books have been written to encourage those who struggle with reading to pick up a book and enjoy it. They have powerful plots with great boy-appeal; content relevant to the age group and Manga-style colour illustrations.

Pepik: Young Heroes by Nicola Kovacs and Gary Lau

Reading age 9-10 years; Interest age 10-14+ years

Pepik lives in a country ruled by fear. Can he help his parents escape to freedom? Attractive books, with plenty of 'street cred', these are enjoyable and satisfying reads. The short chapters are manageable and the illustrations both break up and clarify the text. Young people who struggle with reading will find a great sense of achievement when they read these books, which are pitched at the right level to give the feel of a really satisfying read.  

 Deadly Night: The Matt Merton Mysteries by Paul Blum

A gritty series of books for readers at all levels who like a bit of darkness in their stories and they will enjoy the tension that builds up. The atmospheric black and white illustrations are a perfect reflection of the feel of these books. In Deadly Night a schoolboy hacks into The Firm's computers with deadly consequences.  Matt Merton has forgotten what happened to him on the night of The Crash but The Nightmare may have the answers he needs. Is the message from Jane a hoax that will lead Matt Merton into danger in The Trap?
These graphic novel-style stories centre around Matt Merton and his plight to save Earth from extinction in the aftermath of an alien invasion. Written for pupils aged 10-14, who have a reading age of 7-8, each book offers a satisfying and worthwhile read, with fast-moving narratives, specially-designed text and thought-provoking themes.


A&C Black

The Caves: Lizard: The Caves 1 by Benjamin Hulme-Cross

This is numbered as the first in The Caves series, although the publisher says they can be read in any order. These books, written for reluctant and struggling readers of 11+, are set in a future where convicted Teens have a choice - life in prison or taking their chance in a game show called The Caves. The Teens go into a cave, followed by a monster. If they kill the monster, they are free; if they fail, they die. Zak, the wild boy of the island, tells the stories. Sometimes he helps the Teens; sometimes he doesn't. The Caves: Dogs: The Caves 2 and The Caves: Spider: The Caves 3

The Caves: Drone: The Caves 4 by Benjamin Hulme-Cross

These are tense dramatic stories told in few words but words that really send a shiver down the spine. Will the mysterious Zak help the Teens or won't he? Each time the Teens play the game, they are sent into the cave then pursued by scary monsters. Who will come out alive? These gripping stories are perfect to engage reluctant readers and the heavy reliance on illustrations make the books appealing to the target audience. The final two titles (remember, they can be read in any order) The Caves: Snake and The Caves: Lion.

Marsh Demon (Dark Hunter) by Benjamin Hulme-Cross

A six-book series of supernatural horror scares that will hook even the most reluctant readers. The Dark Hunter Mr Blood and his young assistants Edgar and Mary take on a series of terrifying mysteries, dealing with ghosts, vampires, werewolves and even weirder threats. Dark, scary and gripping, these are high-quality, fully accessible stories for struggling reader. Unlike many series, the stories can be read in any order, so they are ideal for the classroom or library as children won't be queueing to read them in order. They are suitable for a reading age of 7+, but there is enough excitement and suspense to keep older readers gripped. In The Marsh Demon, a demon is taking the village's children. If Mr Blood can't stop it, Edgar and Mary will be next!

House of Memories (Dark Hunter) by Benjamin Hulme-Cross

In this tale, Mary and Edgar must confront a demonic terror from their forgotten childhood, when Mr Blood leaves them in a strange, dark house. Chilling and atmospheric black and white illustrations add to the drama of the stories and break the text up to encourage reluctant readers to persevere - and they will be glad they did, as these are fast-moving and suspenseful stories.

Zero to Hero (Wired) by Seb Goffe

Will is football mad. He practises every day, he's got great skills and ball control - but he's the smallest, slowest boy in the class. Can he show the coach that skill can beat size?

Big Shot (Wired Connect) by Sean Callery

Danny's been having a tough time at school. But now his best friend Ash has made it even worse by telling everyone about his ballroom dancing classes. Will Danny and Ash manage to show everyone how good they really, are at sports? Or will their risky behaviour get them into big trouble? Wired Connect is a series of titles for struggling readers aged 9-11, published in association with Catch Up, the reading recovery charity.

Drawing a Veil (Wired) by Lari Don

Ellie and Amina are best friends. But when Amina decides to start wearing the hijab, it attracts the attention of the bullies. Now Ellie's loyalties are being tested. Has Amina changed? Does it matter if best friends have different beliefs? Is she ready to stand up for Amina? A thought-provoking story about friendship, religion and modern life.

Dead Wood (Wired) by Andy Croft

Holly's family move to the old house so her dad can do his job: bulldozing the ancient trees to make way for a housing estate. But there's something haunting the old house. Something old, and angry, that doesn't want the trees cut down. Something alive... Highly readable, exciting books that take the struggle out of reading, the Wired and Wired Up series encourage and support reading practice by providing gripping, age-appropriate stories at a manageable length and reading level.

Pitch Dark (Wired) by Robert Dodds

David's finding it tough fitting in at his new school. All he wants to do is be the goalie on the school team like he was before. But Nick, the current school goalie, has killed off any hope of that. Walking home through the town's abandoned football stadium one night, David meets a stranger who will change his life forever. But will David's dream of finding a team to kick about with turn into a living nightmare?

Petrify (Wired Up) by Beth Chambers

Everyone knows that you don't go into Ma Jessop's woods. Everyone but new boy Josh. He's not scared by spooky stories about a wild old witch who drinks human blood. To prove his point to Ella and her friends, Josh goes into the quarry at the heart of the woods and steals a souvenir. But suddenly, terrible things start to happen. Can Ella and Josh find a way to appease Ma Jessop before anyone gets really hurt? Or is the horror only just beginning...

Jenny Greenteeth (Wired Up Connect) by Julia Jarman

Nadia becomes increasingly obsessed with the local legend of Jenny Greenteeth, the monster who lurks in the pond and steals children. But is it all her imagination or is there a truth behind the stories? Nadia must find out one terrifying night, when her little brother goes missing...

Hot-shot Harry (Wired Up Connect) by Rob Childs

Harry is the star of Gateway Fives, a mixed five-a-side soccer team. They've made it through to the County tournament, but Harry's ego starts to cause problems within the team - and then their goalie is injured. When Harry has to choose between the team and his own image, will he do the right thing?

Dark Water (Wired Up) by Cindy Jefferies

Sarah is a superb synchronised swimmer with a good chance of getting on the Olympic team. However, she’s shy, and never talks about her swimming at school for fear of mockery. Her fledgling relationship with Tom is almost destroyed when she thinks he’s exposed her to the ridicule of the class, who have no idea how demanding synchronised swimming is. But when a classmate finds himself in danger, only Sarah will be able to help...

Man About the House (Wired Up) by C. A. Plaisted

Jeza lives with his mum and teenage sister. His dad is preoccupied with his new girlfriend and toddler daughter. Jeza feels frustrated at the lack of boy's stuff in his life - he needs dad time too. But can he get Dad to listen, and how can he explain that he needs a dad in his life without hurting his mum? A powerfully emotional story, tackling a real social problem with sensitivity and humour.

Breaking the Rules (Wired Up) by Maxine Linnell

Mo hates her new school and her new town. She has no friends and home life is awful. So when a nice guy friends her on Facebook, she's happy to accept. His messages keep her going while life just gets worse. Then he invites her to meet him. And Mo decides to take a risk... A powerful tale of teenage unhappiness, reckless behaviour and real friendship, for today's cyber-literate teens.

Shadow Snatcher (Wired Connect) by Lou Kuenzler

Aiden and his little sister Eva are home alone on Halloween. When a stranger dressed up as Death rings the doorbell, Aiden's not fooled. He knows it's only Uncle Tony, and lets him straight in. But it's not Uncle Tony at all... Death has come for Eva, and he's not going to leave without her, unless Aiden can win in a bet to save Eva's life. But how can Aiden and Eva cheat Death?

Rainbow Boots Wired Connect) by Chris Powling

Denzil is the only kid in the school without a pair of Rainbow Boots. So he pretends he's waiting for a special handmade pair. As the lies pile up, what will Denzil do when he can't pretend any more? School comedy.

Attack of the Killer Frogs (Wired Connect) by Peter Clover

A family's holiday cottage seems like paradise. But something funny has leaked out of the nearby genetic research lab. When Ellie tells her parents about being attacked by a gigantic fanged frog they think she's making it up, but soon the family's cottage is under siege - by frogs! Sci-fi horror/adventure for struggling readers aged 9+ with a reading age of 7.

The Wolf Cupboard (Wired Up Connect) by Susan Gates

Leon is supposed to be looking after his little brother Danny when he starts big school. But some kids tell Danny that there's a wolf in the cupboard and now he won't go back to school. So Leon persuades Danny that wolves are great - and soon he has the opposite problem as Danny is desperate to find the wolf. Can Leon sort out his crazy brother without getting in trouble with Mum? School/family comedy.

The Dinner of Smells (White Wolves: Stories from World Religions) by Humaira Rashid

When a poor man stands enjoying the smells from a restaurant, its greedy owner charges him for the privilege! Can Nasruddin, the wise man, save him from jail? Lively retelling of a Muslim folk tale with gorgeous illustrations by Jamie Lenman, featuring the famous character Nasruddin. For below average readers at KS1.

The Guru and the King (White Wolves: Stories from World Religions) by Bali Rai

Guru Hargobind and 52 princes have been unjustly imprisoned by the cruel King. The King says he will release the Guru, but the Guru refuses to leave without the princes. The King tells him he can take as many princes as can hold onto his clothes. Can the Guru find a way to rescue all 52 princes? Lively retelling of the well-known Sikh tale, suitable for average ability readers at KS1.

The Golem (White Wolves: Stories from World Religions) by Gaby Halberstam

The Jewish people of Prague are under threat. So the Rabbi creates a golem - a giant clay man - to defend them. But the creature rampages out of control and the Rabbi must put a stop to it. Thrilling, evocative retelling of the classic Jewish myth for above average readers at KS1 with powerful illustrations by Laura Clark.

Half As Big (White Wolves: World Folk Tales) by Lily Hyde

Medio Pollito is tired of being a big fish in a small pond. At least, that's what he thinks he is. In fact, he's the smallest chicken in a big yard, but his opinion of himself is big enough for two. So he decides to go to the city and see the king. His mother gives him two words of advice: be polite and helpful to everyone and keep away from the cook in the king's kitchen. Unfortunately, Medio Pollito doesn't listen to her...Half as Big is a retelling of a Mexican folk tale.

Don't Forget, Lara! (White Wolves: Familiar Settings) by Julia Green

Lara is in a muddle - her cat is having kittens soon, and she can't stop thinking about it. And there's so much to remember, too. Every day, she forgets to take the right thing to school and she daydreams in class, which makes her teacher cross. But what can she do to make things better?

Stop, Thief! (White Wolves: Familiar Settings) by Meg Harper

Jed is embarrassed by his family. They all love tap-dancing! And when a picture of his dancing dad appears in the paper, the bullies at school tease him. But when the corner shop gets robbed, Jed's dad is quick to follow on his trail. Jed pedals after them on his bike, and soon the whole town joins in the chase, through the park, around the pond and down the hill, but there's only one man who's going to catch the villain!

Jack and the Jungle (White Wolves: Familiar Settings) by Malachy Doyle

When Jack moves into a new house, it seems like there's nothing to do. But when he loses his football over the garden wall, he meets Abbie, his mysterious next-door neighbour, who gives him a glimpse of the exciting world on the other side and the wild creatures that live there, including snakes and wolves and tigers and giants!

The Ugly Little Swan (White Wolves: Fairy Tales) by James Riordan

The newly born swan is not like the others - he's small and brown and ugly. His brothers and sisters won't play with him, the bigger swans bully him and even his mum and dad chase him away. Sad and lonely, he sets out into the big wide world. A year passes and he begins to think he will never find a friend. But then he sees some beautiful birds and something inside him changes...The Ugly Little Swan is a fairy tale with a twist.

Sleeping Nasty (White Wolves: Fairy Tales) by Tony Bradman

Prince Oscar's parents have run out of money. So now he has to find a princess and marry her. But all the princesses in the land are already taken, or they don't want to talk to him. Then Oscar discovers an enchanted castle, home to a gorgeous princess, and he thinks that his search may be over. Unfortunately, when the spell is broken, the princess is not what he bargained for. Sleeping Nasty is a fairy tale with a twist.

The Princess and the He (White Wolves: Fairy Tales) by Karen Wallace

Princess Jules is beautiful, intelligent and rich. What more could she want? The perfect prince, of course. And Princess Jules won't settle for just any prince, so finding the right one is not that easy. Then a scruffy young man appears at the castle door in the middle of the night - surely he is not the answer? Luckily Queen Glitter has a special way of finding out who he really is...The Princess and the He is a fairy tale with a twist.

Bug-Eyed Monsters (Black Cats) by Jean Ure

"Mr Snitcher is an alien! Pass it on..." Nobody knew where the rumour came from. Most of the boys think it's a joke. But the more Joe and Andy think about it, the weirder Mr Snitcher starts to look. Is he really an alien? And how about the rest of the teachers? Laugh-out-loud school story with a sci-fi twist.

The Gorgle (Black Cats) by Emma Fischel

Finn doesn't want to move to the spooky old house in the first place. Soon the strange goings-on and mysterious noises are driving him crazy - and he's driving his family crazy about it. Then he sees the creature that's been hibernating in the wardrobe... It's a Gorgle. A bit like a moth, a bit like a hornet, and a lot like a ten-foot-tall monster from your worst nightmare. It's awake. It's hungry. And Finn is the only one who can stop it!

The Opal Quest: DragonChild Book 2 by Gill Vickery

When the DragonQueen's Jewels of Power were stolen by the six sister-witches, the dragons were banished from the land of Tulay. They took with them a human child as hostage. Tia has been raised by the dragons and considers them her family. But when she learns that her mother is one of the sister witches, she must prove herself to be a true DragonChild by retrieving the jewels, with the aid of her DragonBrother. In this second exciting adventure, Tia goes after the jewel that gives its possessor the power to shift shape.

Big Shot (Wired Connect) by Sean Callery

Reading Age: 7+  Interest Age: 9+
Danny's having a tough time at school and his classmates call him Piggy because he is always eating. Just imagine how much worse it gets when people find out he goes to ballroom dancing classes...  When he and Ash are banned from the sports trial, will they ever prove themselves? A realistic story which will strike a chord with many readers.
Wired Connect is a series of titles for struggling readers aged 9-11, published in association with Catch Up, the reading recovery charity.

Attack of the Killer Frogs (Wired Connect) by Peter Glover

Reading Age: 7+  Interest Age: 9+
Ellie's parents don't believe her when she tells them about being attacked by a gigantic fanged frog. But things quickly get worse and soon the family's holiday cottage is beseiged by frogs. In a scarily realistic story, the reader finds out something strange has leaked out of the nearby genetic research laboratory. It's a good satisfying read despite the shortness of the book, which makes it perfect to attract reluctant readers.

The Rainbow Boots (Wired Connect) by Chris Powling

Reading Age: 7+  Interest Age: 9+
Denzil is the only boy in the school without a pair of Rainbow Boots. To keep up appearances, he pretends he's waiting for a special handmade pair. But as lies do, things all get a bit out of hand - how will things get resolved? There's an interesting message in this comic tale of school life. When I opened the packs of these books, I was immediately attracted to the lovely colourful colours, making these really attractive to collect or display in the classroom or library.

Shadow Snatcher (Wired Connect) by Lou Kuenzler

 Reading Age: 7+  Interest Age: 9+
'Home alone' on Halloween - it's the setting for a scary novel. When a stranger dressed up as Death rings the doorbell, Aiden knows it's only Uncle Tony, and lets him in. But it's not! It's Death, come for Eva, determined not to leave without her. There's just one possible way to save Eva.... The scary cover sets the scene for this short but compelling novel.


Hot Shot Harry (Wired Up Connect) by Rob Childs

Reading Age: 8+  Interest Age: 9+
Wired Connect and Wired Up Connect are recommended by CatchUp, the reading recovery charity. The Gateway Fives, a mixed five-a-side soccer team, have made it through to the County tournament, but Harry, their star player, is getting a bit too big for his boots. This causes problems within the team, which has more problems when their goalkeeper is injured. Harry has a hard decision to make - will he make the right one? The young reader will have his own views on what they would have decided in this thought-provoking story.  Highly readable, exciting books that take the struggle out of reading, the A&C Black Wired series encourage and support reading practice by providing gripping, age-appropriate stories at a manageable length and reading level.

The Wolf Cupboard (Wired Up Connect) by Susan Gates

Reading Age: 8+  Interest Age: 9+
The books in the Wired Connect and Wired Up Connect are written by a wide range of well respected children's authors. I really hope that children will be encouraged into reading by the series and then will go on to read other books by the authors. When Danny when he starts big school, big brother Leon is supposed to look out for him. When some children tell Danny that there's a wolf in the cupboard, he won't go back to school. But when Leon persuades Danny that wolves are fine,  he has the opposite problem - Danny is desperate to find the wolf. A humorous story with a school setting.

Planet Hell (Wired Up Connect) by Joan Lennon

Reading Age: 8+  Interest Age: 9+
Sam is one of the Miners who live on Planet Hell, digging ore to power the Earth. The miners live a nightmarish underground life - but going to the surface is even worse. It means death because nothing can survive there. But is this all actually true? A thought-provoking science fiction story which will intrigue the reader.

Jenny Greenteeth (Wired Up Connect) by Julia Jarman

Reading Age: 8+  Interest Age: 9+
Nadia becomes increasingly obsessed with the local legend of Jenny Greenteeth, the monster who lurks in the pond and steals children. But is it a  true story or a figment of Nadia's imagination? Nadia must find out one terrifying night, when her little brother goes missing...


Ransom Publishing 

Ransom Publishing is an independent specialist publisher of high quality, inspirational books that will encourage and help both children and young adults to develop their reading skills. Many of Ransom’s books are specifically written and designed for struggling and reluctant readers, but they also recognise the growing need for books aimed at young emergent readers.
They are proud to be the first publisher to produce easily accessible, high-interest books which have a very low reading level and are genuinely suitable for older teenagers and adults. The first series of books in this range, Dark Man, won the Educational Resources Book Award in 2006.

Ransom Books say these are the features that make their books appeal to this market:

  • Level-appropriate language and pacy content that will motivate struggling or reluctant readers

  • Appealing font and text layout will engage and maintain reader interest

  • Great attention-grabbing illustrations that have high-appeal

  • Topics that interest older children and adults and put the fun back into reading

  • Books which recognise that our readers are sophisticated, whatever their reading abilities

  • Superb specialist authors who are bursting with creativity and talent and have vast experience of writing for these specific reader groups

  • Great resources for both the library and classroom that have linked workbooks and digital software.

Meet Steve Sharp (Steve Sharp) by H. L. Dube

Reading age 5-7 years, Interest age  12 to adult
Interestingly, this contemporary new series is designed to engage both reluctant teenage and adult readers - I see plenty of books for teens but great to see some for adults. As well as reluctant readers, these are excellent for those for whom English is not the first language. The stories, which are about Steve Sharp, a private detective, race along, keeping the attention focused.
Steve Sharp is a series of six books featured a private detective, with-fast paced action suited to reluctant readers aged 12 years to adult, with a reading age of 5 to 7 years. The stories are very short but the writing is sharp and to the point. Despite being dismissed from the police, Steve is still determined to fight crime and does so through a series of exciting adventures with some strong characters. In Meet Steve Sharp the reader is introduced to Steve who gets his first commission - to find Jo.

Looking for Jo (Steve Sharp) by H. L. Dube

In the second book, we join Steve in Looking for Jo and the short pithy text draws the reader through, and the compelling pictures help tell the story too. The books are designed to be read in sequence, and gradually the word count and complexity grows throughout, giving the reader a real sense of achievement and progression by the end. "The series provides a more accessible reading experience as a result of the white text on a black background, which is designed to reduce page glare and aid dyslexic readers. The texts make use of recognised high-frequency vocabulary, as well as being phonically decodable wherever possible." The design is stunning and perfectly complements the feel of the stories. Gangster finds Jo living with a drug dealer - still in short chapters, there is more text here. The staccato language of Finding Jo continues the trail and Steve finds himself in danger as the book ends on a cliffhanger. All is resolved in The Plan.... or is it? I have a (hopeful) feeling that more books will be on the way.




All Wrapped Up (Siti's Sisters) by Helen Orme

Reading age 7 years, Interest age  9 - 10 years
There are already three sets of books in this popular series, and here the reader is taken back to when the girls are a year younger, so addressing issues suited to a slightly younger age group - great that young readers have then got a whole lot more stories to look forward to! Friendship is a lovely topic for girls of this age and Siti and her 'sisters' are the very best of friends. The books are short, with carefully selected language to make them accessible, and they still manage to pack in plenty of pacy action. At the beginning of each book, the reader is introduced to the characters, and they become better known through the stories. The illustrations can be used to help decode the stories, as there are plenty of them and all full of detail.
In All Wrapped Up, Donna is struggling to afford presents. She has a bright idea and her teachers helps - but then things go horribly wrong....

Don't Let Go (Siti's Sisters) by Helen Orme

Despite hating dogs, Kelly has to look after Floppy for her mum's friend. Of course, her sisters are on hand to help out - and it's a good thing they are, as Floppy makes a run for it... In I Know Something Siti steps in to rescue a new girl at school who is being bullied, and ensures it will never happen again. The sisters decide to cook something special for Rachel's mum's birthday and the result is Kitchen Chaos when everything goes wrong in this amusing story. Making Tracks is about an exciting day out at the local wetland centre, when the girls find some strange tracks. What can they be? Open Wide will strike a chord with anyone who is reluctant to go to the dentist, but luckily Lu finds out that it's not so bad after all. The stories and their settings are all realistic, the characters well portrayed and girls will readily identify with the scenarios. An excellent series to encourage reluctant and struggling readers, who will get real enjoyment and a sense of satisfaction.

Star Chasers

Interest Age 8 - 14 years | Reading Age 8 - 9 years
A series of fast-paced, high-action, no gimmicks space adventures featuring carefully controlled vocabulary and simple sentence structures.
The books feature superb illustrations that combine classic science fiction with a modern Manga twist. The exciting plots and entertaining characters ensure these are classic, simple and rewarding reads for reluctant and struggling readers.
Starchasers and the Galactic Shopping Mall Just imagine - a planet which is one huge shopping mall! The Starchasers have a job on - to find Ella. But they find, not one but two Ellas! Full of action and with plenty of illustrations to help understanding make this a good book for those who struggle with reading but need books at the right interest age.

Siti's Sisters

Interest Age 10 - 14 years | Reading Age 7 - 8 years 
For girls who want to read books by authors such as Jacqueline Wilson but find it a struggle, these are easy-to-read, light-hearted storylines that will resonate with today's emerging teenagers.
Illustrated with contemporary black and white illustrations throughout, each fast-moving story offers simple sentences, controlled vocabulary and low word counts.

Who's Who? The story revolves around teenagers running a creche in the shopping centre - just how hard can that be? Full of characters which will appeal to teenage girls whilst being an easy read  which does not 'talk down', this is ideal for its target market.

3 2 1 Go

Interest Age 8 - 14 years | Reading Age 6 - 7 years
A series of powerful and dramatic first person, second by second accounts of daring sports, stunts and missions.
321 Go! takes readers right to the heart of the action. With detailed yet simple descriptions and superb full colour photography, readers will discover what it’s really like to pull off a death-defying stunt, launch into space or hurtle along in a drag race.
Free Dive is an exciting look into the world of diving, bringing an exciting look into this dangerous world to those who may not otherwise be able to enjoy reading of this sort. Richly illustrated with full colour throughout, this is a really appealing book and a brilliant way of capturing the attention of reluctant or struggling readers.

Dark Man

Interest Age Teenage to Young Adult | Reading Age 5 - 8 years
The Dark Man series has won great acclaim for its ability to engage older, very reluctant readers.
Starting at just 200 words a book and focusing on the key high frequency words, Dark Man offers older readers strong, atmospheric storylines combined with powerful black and white illustrations. 
The Dark Side of Magic is one of the Dark Man series that really fills a gap in the market  - with a high interest age but low reading age, it is a book nobody will be worried about being seen with. Minimal text with stunning drawings capture the attention.

Boffin Boy 

Interest Age 8  -14 years| Reading Age 6 - 7 years
The superb manga style illustrations, imaginative plots and wacky characters will appeal to children aged 8-14, yet the books are carefully written for a reading age of 6-7 years and feature simple speech bubble text with controlled vocabulary and low word counts.
Boffin Boy and the Forest of the Ninja is written very much with the target audience in mind and the comic book style guarantee this book will be enjoyed. WuPee seems to have joined a band of Ninja crooks - but has he really?

 Trail blazers

Interest Age 8 - 14 years | Reading Age 6 - 7 years
Get the facts and read a story all in one book! A fascinating fact-finding section is followed by a story which appears on two parallel ability levels - allowing access for the poorest of readers.
Featuring full-colour images, beautiful illustrations and lively, engaging layouts, the books cover high appeal topics that kids just love to read about.
UFOs This is one book in this excellent series which allows poorer readers to access information that might otherwise be inaccessible to them. A clever combination of fact and a story, plus a word list, make this a really good book on several levels and it is bound to appeal.


Goal! Reading Series

A fantastic high interest age, low reading age football reading series featuring 48 decodable texts that follow the UK government's 'Letters & Sounds' programme.
Offering progression over five levels, the series includes fiction and non-fiction books covering a wide variety of football-related topics.
This series of glossy books will have immediate appeal and the different reading levels through the series will encourage youngsters to progress through the series, thus enhancing their reading skills. Some of the series feature cartoon style illustrations; the rest are illustrated by full colour photographs.


Wayland Books


Freestylers Funnies: Car Wars by Tom Easton

This short amusing read, with a heavy illustrated content is one of a series especially designed for struggling readers. Freestylers have a low reading (5 - 7) and high interest age - the illustrations, with their strong contemporary images, are especially appealing for the target market. This particular series follows Dan as he tries out a series of work experience placements - a relevant and contemporary situation with which readers will readily engage. This time, Dan is at a car yard - all he has to do is sell a car... The inclusion of a central character who features in all the books is a good way to engage the reader.

Sliced in Two (Freestylers Short Thrillers) by Andrew Fusek Peters and Cathy Brett

In this short but action-packed mystery starring Sam and Jas there's a ghost on the loose in the local woodyard. Not just any ordinary ghost- it's a ghost that has been sliced in two by a wood saw! Sam keeps her cool but Jas is all of a dither as they try to solve the case. Exciting, fun and well-paced, this is a great series to encourage readers - boys and girls. Attractive jacketing and great illustrations will appeal to even reluctant readers and they will find the stories very rewarding.
Reading level for this book:- Reading Age 7 ATOS: 2.5 Lexile ® Measure: 340L Book Band: 11 Lime

The Crawling Hand (Freestylers Short Thrillers) by Andrew Fusek Peters and Cathy Brett

In the first of a promising new crime series with high interest and low reading age, we meet teen detectives Jas and Sam. They hear a knock on the door of their detective agency - it seems that nobody is there but then they spot a skeleton hand on the floor! It can crawl, it can talk and it needs its body. Can our detectives help? Reluctant readers will respond well to the fact that they get to know the characters through the series and this will encourage their reading. Despite the restricted text, there is plenty of suspense to keep interest high and the cartoon illustrations are appealing.
Reading level for this book:- Reading Age 7 ATOS: 2.6 Lexile ® Measure: 360L Book Band: 11 Lime


Fun Reads by Anna and Sydney Higgins


Fun Read 1 by Anna Higgins

Flesch Reading Ease score is 107.9. Anna and Stanley Higgins identified a gap in the market - stories written for teenagers with severe reading difficulties which are interest appropriate for them. This progressive series of books is the result. Each is printed on cream coloured paper, with a very clear font. This book is graded as ‘very, very easy to read’ with content suitable for both male and female students aged 10-15. There are 66 pages and 64 illustrations - the illustrations can be used by the reader to help decode the text. There are four stories which all deal with social situations realistically portrayed as they may be experienced by young people - Old Man Moon; Shouts in the Night; The Run-away and At the Dance. The stories are simple but will be enjoyed by the target audience. Each line has generally between 5 and 7 words, making it easy to read, rather than conventional sentences..

Fun Read 2 by Sydney Higgins

Flesch Reading Ease score is 98. It is graded as ‘very easy to read’. The content is most suitable for male students aged 10 - 15. There are 86 pages and 26 illustrations. The two stories - Down Rope Walk and CRASH! deal with problems of friendships and adventure, and teens pushing the boundaries. The stories are quite hard-hitting and thought-provoking, involving situations which will grip the reader's attention.

Fun Read 3 by Anna Higgins

Flesch Reading Ease score is 96.9. It is graded as ‘easy to read’. The content is most suitable for female students aged 11-16. There are 92 pages and 26 illustrations. Both stories deal with common problematic social situations experienced by many young people.In Lonely Girl Judy, a loner at school, runs away with Dave. In No Time to Scream, Sally disobeys her parents and goes to the disco - with disastrous consequences.

When the Song Was Over (Fun Reads 4) by Anna Higgins

Flesch Reading Ease score is 95.3. It is graded as ‘very easy to read’. The content is most suitable for female students aged 11-16. There are 94 pages and 26 illustrations - far fewer than previously, but full page. When the Song was Over - a single story this time, which gives the reader a more meaty story to get involved with - introduces Susan who was very keen on Terry who played in a pop group but he took no notice of her. This changes when, indirectly, Susan is responsible for damage to Terry's drum kit...

Vampires, Werewolves, Ghosts and UFOs (Fun Reads 5) by Sydney Higgins

Flesch Reading Ease score is 89.9. It is graded as ‘very easy to read’. We are all aware of the fact that boys often prefer to read non-fiction, and Vampires, Werewolves, Ghosts AND UFOs has been written with this in mind . The content is most suitable for male students aged 11-16- but I think girls will enjoy it too. There are 98 pages and 76 illustrations. Despite all the stories, there has never been any satisfactory proof that vampires, werewolves, ghosts or UFO’s exist or have ever really existed. Some reports were made by people who are mad, drunk, on drugs, shortsighted or easily scared. But other reports have come from policemen, pilots and other trained observers. So perhaps some phantoms and unidentified flying objects may exist or have existed. This is an interesting collection of short accounts - two or three pages - of a varied selection of stories about the supernatural. An interesting read for anyone.

The Price of Friendship (Fun Read 6) by Anna Higgins

Flesch Reading Ease score is 87.1. It is graded as ‘easy to read’.  The content is most suitable for female students aged 11-16. There are 114 pages and 8 illustrations in The Price of Friendship. Amanda arrives unexpectedly at the Seymour’s home, announcing that she’s left home after a row with her father and his new wife.  David and Joan Seymour agree that Amanda can stay with them for a while. Their son, Tom, is delighted. He is even happier when Manada's friend Lola visits – but she throws the whole family into crisis. What happens then is both funny and alarming. As everyone tries to deal with the problems Lola creates, they all discover the real price of friendship. Unlike the earlier books in this series, the text is presented in complete sentences. Like all the books, the story is thought-provoking and will give opportunity for discussion.

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