Callum is a Nought, Sephy is a Cross; the two of them become best friends in a society where they should not be.

It’s simple really Crosses and Noughts do not mix, they stick to their own and if they mix then trouble brews.

The Crosses tend to rule the world, while the Noughts stand by reluctantly, for example, Noughts were not allowed to go to school until recently.

Sephy is the daughter of a powerful politician and never has to worry about money again. Callum is just a lowly nought, scraping by

As the years go by, Sephy and Callum’s relationship turns into passionate love. In a world where Sephy and Callum would be looked down upon and penalised for mixing, they are determined to be together.

But when the bomb goes off and Callum’s family are blamed, what will Sephy do? Will she stand by him? What length will they go to, to be together?

As fighting increased between the Noughts and the Crosses there is only one thing that could happen…

When Malorie Blackman wrote this book, she was angry at how the Stephen Laurence case was handled and how as a black person she was treated. These were just a few factors that made her write this book.

It is a different and great storyline which shows how horrible people can be.

The chapters are short and sweet but that’s ok, sometimes chapters can be too long. The book is 443 pages long, a great length.

I love the way the chapter alternate, and we get to hear what life is like for both Sephy and Callum, despite their differences we still feel sorry for the both of them as Callum and Sephy have different difficulties.  We are desperate for them to be together and just when we think that is possible, something happens that drives them apart.

We are also angry at their parents for letting such differences happen, something needs to change! What Sephy and Callum cannot understand is why the Noughts and the Crossed do not get on, surely there is a way.

I read this book when I was in my teenage years and I have enjoyed revisiting Noughts and Crosses. I remembered that it was a good book but a sad one.

This book is a Young Adult and it is suitable for children aged 12 and over. However, you may want to give it a read first to check whether you think it is ok for your child as some can be quite sensitive.

In the end, Sephy has to make a hard decision, which path will she choose? Let me know if you thought that Sephy had made the right decision!

Noughts and Crossed is 1 of 4 books, so if you have enjoyed the book and would like to carry on the journey, the next book is called Knife Edge by Malorie Blackman, enjoy!

As soon as J.K Rowling announced that she would do another Harry Potter book, the world was in turmoil! We couldn’t wait to get our hands on it.

It took me a while to purchase this book as I was unsure of what it would be like –was it going to be the same? What could happen that would be unique? Is Harry Potter past his sell by date?  Read on to hear my thoughts.

 

Albus

This is it

 

Lily

Wow!

 

Albus

Platform nine and three- quarters

 

Lily

Where are they? Are they here? Maybe they didn’t come?

 

Harry points out RON, HERMOINE, and their daughter ROSE. Lily runs up to them.

 

Uncle Ron. Uncle Ron!!!

 

RON turns towards them as LILY goes barrelling up to him. He picks her up into his arms.

 

Ron

If it isn’t my favourite Potter.

 

Lily

Have you got my trick?

 

Ron

Are you aware of the Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes certified nose-stealing breath?

 

Rose

Mum! Dad’s doing that lame thing again.

 

Hermione

You say lame, he says glorious, I say… somewhere in between.

 

It has been 22 years since Harry Potter and his team defeated Lord Voldemort at the battle of Hogwarts. Everything is much more peaceful now; Harry Potter is now an employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and a father to 3 school age children. His youngest son Albus struggles with his “famous” family history as he begins his time at Hogwarts and becomes friends with someone you would least expect. As he struggles to understand his father, Albus finds out some interesting information and decides action should be taken but he is young and does not realise that the past is the past for a reason.

I was shocked to see that there are so many bad reviews for Harry Potter and The Cursed Child. I thoroughly enjoyed this book but could see a lot of flaws; however, I do not think it is as bad as people have made out. Of course, it was never going to live up to the other Harry Potter books as they were good.

The story

I was very intrigued by this book as I thought to myself what else could J.K write? Will it be similar or different? I am pleased to say I found the storyline unique enough to finish the book. I just love her imagination, for example, the trolley witch who never lets anyone off the train.

As the book is a script version, it took me a little bit of time to get used to it. It’s easier and quicker to read as the descriptive writing is not there.

We still have our favourite characters – Ron, Hermione, Ginny and of course the story would not be a bit weird without him – Harry Potter. However, I did feel that there was a lack of other characters; for example, we don’t know what happened to Ron’s Parents, staff at the ministry of magic; although I had assumed they had retired. We hear that it’s 22 years since Voldemort and that peace is restored – I would have thought that there would still be rebels around; even Draco Malfoy is a good boy!

The story focus’ on Harry Potter’s third son and we hear very little about his other children. I like to think that this book sets the scene for more to come

Therefore, despite these flaws in the book, I enjoyed the story itself. The other Harry Potter books were so good that this one was always going to be the hardest to write; especially with the hype. I think that you and your children will enjoy but will feel let down when the storyline is cantered around a couple of characters.

Happy Birthday Roald Dahl

Well, I could not let this day go past, without celebrating one of the most talented, creative and famous author that is Roald Dahl! And today he still seems as popular as he was when I was growing up.

Born in 1916 in Wales to Norwegian Parents, Roald would be 102 today!  Woo! Time to break out the champagne, party poppers and get our boogie on.

Roald Dahl began life in Wales, his Dad had emigrated from Norway in the late 1800s.

His childhood wasn’t the best when he was 3, his 7-year-old sister died and weeks later Dahl’s father died. He continued to live with his mother in Wales as it had been his Father’s wish to be educated in England.

School Life

Dahl showed his mischievous side at the age of 8 where he was canned by the headmaster for putting a dead mouse in a jar of gobstoppers; the owner whose name was Mrs Pratchett was apparently mean.

Eventually, Road Dahl was sent to a boarding school in Weston Super Mare, where he had a horrible time and in 1929 he moved to another school in Derbyshire, where he witnessed cruel behaviour and bullying.

In fact, this is reflected in his books; for example, they are written from the point of view of a child who is being bullied by the villainous adult. A lot of his experiences became inspirations for his beloved books.

Pre-Writing

Roald Dahl did not embark on his writing career until later in life,  his career as a writer did not start until the 1940s – previously he had served in the RAF and as an Intelligence officer during the war, where he rose to acting wing commander.

First Book Published

Roald Dahl’s first book was published on the 1st August  1942. It was called  ‘A Piece of Cake’ which was about wartime stories but it was not a children’s book. In fact, his first children’s book was called ‘Gremlins’ and it was published in 1943.

After then Dahl went on a creative spur and created many stories that we know and love today including Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, The BFG, Fantastic Mr Fox, Danny The Champion of the World, The Twits and plenty more.

Screenplays and Other Works

Although we knew Roald Dahl as a children’s author, he also wrote some adult books too, his most famous one being ‘ The Smoker!’ He also wrote some screenplays for the James Bond film  ‘You Only Live Twice.

During his lifetime Roald Dahl has achieved much success, not just for writing books – he briefly wrote and hosted a science fiction and horror programme called ‘The Twilight Zone’ and other screenplays amongst other things.

Sadly he died in 1990 but his legacy will still carry on, his had 5 kids and one of them is an author and his granddaughter is Sophie Dahl the model.

Happy Birthday, Road Dahl! Thank you for the memories.

What is your favourite Road Dahl Book?

After seeing the first two films I had to go and buy the last book. I was desperate to find out what had happened to Peeta but the film was not out until November and this really bugged me. I was not at all disappointed, the author has written this very well. I have read the other books and Suzanne Collins keeps me constantly engaged; I could not put the books down. We also see different sides to the characters, that we have come to love over the last three books.

In this book Katniss leads the revolution as the Mockingjay, she has asked President Coin for one favour and that is to kill President Snow; Katniss was granted this wish but it is a secret mission. Katniss leads a small army to the Capitol where she encounters many dangerous things and Peeta also joins this army despite the fact that he still hates and wants to kill Katniss. I won’t go too much into detail in case I ruin it for others but this has many twists and turns including the death of one of our beloved characters. This story about war was very well written and creative, she has researched this well and Katniss still displays her strong character throughout the books despite everything being taken from her.

Although I was addicted and obsessed with this book, I was a little disappointed with the ending, we don’t really much about Gale,despite Katniss and Gale being inseparable best friends; and although Katniss committed a crime and we don’t really know the outcome of the trial. I feel that the end was rushed a bit and warranted a lot more descriptive along with a more in-depth storyline. However the way it ended was realistic as this would happen to solider out fighting a war.

I think that Suzanne Collins had got her point across as I felt empty and drained after (as I discovered many other people did)

However I give this book a big thumb up, I do find the mark of a good author is one that makes you cry and I am not ashamed to admit I was emotional over these books. Mockingjay is very different from the other two books and a lot more intense; although I do recommend reading the book before watching the film; as they are very different.
I rate this book 10/10

I bought the Divergent books from The Works in my local town, they were recommended to me and as it had been made into a film I thought it’s bound to be good.

I started off reading with great promise but once I got to a certain part of the book my imagination halted, unfortunately, I could not read any further perhaps it was too similar to the Hunger Games book? However, on a more positive note, I decided to buy the film as it was on offer; here I understood the book a lot more and although it was good I am not racing to see the next one.

The main character is a young girl called Trish and when they are 16 they have to choose whether to stay within their faction or whether to move on; a heart breaking decision for any person. Tests are undergone to advise them which faction are the best however Trish was found to be “Divergent” and is told to tell no one as the head of the all the factions are scared of Divergent.

The storyline itself is different; however we are told that it is located to Chicago but it is rundown and therefore not familiar to us. According to sources as you read on through the trilogy you find out what is beyond Chicago.

Therefore I would not recommend this book to others as I did not find it engaging at all. I struggled a lot when reading this and could not get my head into it. The writer does not engage me at all. (sorry Veronica Roth)

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