If you’re about to head to the bookshop in search of a new read for your kids or a gift for a young friend, you’ll find a bumper crop of November children’s novels on the shelves.
Here, we list the twelve new novels and storybooks we’re most looking forward to sharing with the kids in our lives. Click on the titles or cover images below for more information about each, or to buy a copy:
The Imaginary – New in paperback this month, this is exactly the kind of book we like to read aloud with kids of around 8 and up (older kids who enjoy authors like Neil Gaiman could also read it by themselves). It’s a whimsical, sometimes scary, adventure based around the question of what happens to our childhood imaginary friends when we grow up and forget them. You can read our full review here.
Lost Kingdom: Zarkora 2 – We haven’t started this fantasy-adventure series yet, but we’re looking forward to getting into it with the kids over these holidays (there are two books available now and not too long to wait for the third, out in March). We were intrigued to read about the young brother and sister team who are writing the books together. The series has lots of elements we love – dragons, an amazing setting, quest and a pacy plot. And it comes highly recommended by many reviewers, including fantasy author Isobelle Carmody.
Pivot and Win: Netball Gems 3 – Reading books about their favourite sports is really motivating for kids, so we were excited to come across this new series of novels produced in conjunction with Netball Australia. There are scattered illustrations throughout and they’ll suit girls of around 7 and up (the characters play for the under 13s team).
The Kaboom Kid Book 5 and Book 6 – And speaking of sport, this series co-written by Australian cricketer David Warner is already such a favourite with our 8-10 year old friends – we know these two new instalments will make great gifts! They’re light-hearted, satisfying stories – a little irreverent, and full of insights into playing cricket. You can read our full review here.
Cleo Stories: A Friend and a Pet – This is the second of two books about imaginative little Cleo and her wonderful family, created by much-loved and award-winning collaborators Libby Gleeson and Freya Blackwood. Highly illustrated, they’re a lovely bridge between picture books and chapter books. And with their hardcover format, they’ll make lovely gifts.
Bad Guys Episode 2: Mission Unpluckable – Another great series, this time from the wonderful Aaron Blabey, creator of Pig the Pug. It’s a ‘chapter book’ with illustrations throughout. A lot of fun to read aloud to kids around 6 to 9.
The Tapper Twins Book 1 and Book 2 – We’re pretty sure this series is going to be the new reading ‘addiction’ for some of our kids of around 9 and up. The very funny stories of warring twins have had us laughing out loud (and who can resist a story about twins?). We love the clever way that text messages, screen shots and other images are incorporated into the story.
November also brings new instalments in three longstanding favourite series: Top of the Class (Nearly): Tom Gates 9, Old School: Diary of a Wimpy Kid 10 and Puppy Love: Dork Diaries 10. These bring so many laughs – and so much reading pleasure – into kids’ lives, they’re definitely on our ‘must buy gifts’ list.
Check out our lists of the October children’s novels we’re most looking forward to sharing, as well as November children’s picture books and October picture books.
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