Virtual Bookshelf for 12-13 year olds

Have a browse through some brilliant reads from some of the most exciting authors writing today


Years ago in the kingdom of Orïsha, the magic-wielding maji people were wiped out in an effort by the cruel king to gain more power. Only a few people remain with the power to use magic, and they must remain hidden. Teenager Zélie Adebola is one of them. She's determined to bring the magic back, whatever the cost. But Orïsha is a perilous land and to succeed in her mission Zélie must confront the danger around her, and come to terms with her own power.

Tomi Adeyemi is a Nigerian-American writer and creative writing coach. Her website was voted 101 best websites for writers by Writer’s Digest. Children of Blood and Bone is her debut, and won the Waterstones Children's Book Prize Older Fiction Award 2019.


As fourteen-year-old Ella begins her first day at work she steps into a world of silks, seams, scissors and hems. She is a dressmaker, but this is no ordinary sewing workshop. Ella has joined the seamstresses of Birkenau-Auschwitz. Every dress she makes could mean the difference between life and death. And everyday she is faced with painful decisions about how far she is prepared to go to survive. Will she fight for herself alone, or will she trust the importance of her friendship with fellow seamstress Rose?

Lucy Adlington is a writer and clothes historian. She is the award winning author of many acclaimed books for adults and teenagers. Red Ribbon was nominated for the CILIP Carnegie Medal 2019.


It is 2099 - and the world is gradually drowning, as mighty Arctic ice floes melt, the seas rise and land disappears forever. To escape the rising water, fifteen-year-old Mara, her family and community must pack themselves into boats and undertake a terrifying journey to a bizarre city. But even here there is no safety and, shut out by high walls, Mara realises that this new life will not be so easy after all. To save her people, Mara must find a way into the city and search for a new land to call home . .

Julie Bertagna is an author of powerful and original fiction for young people. Exodus, her first novel, was shortlisted for the Whitbread Children’s Book of the Year Award and won the Lancashire Children's Book of the Year Award and the Angus Award.


Haylah Swinton is just a normal girl, great friends, annoying younger brother. But Haylah has a secret. She wants to be a stand-up comedian, but she's pretty sure girls like her - big girls, girls who don't get all the boys, girls who a lot of people don't see - don't belong on stage. That hasn't stopped her dreaming though, and when the seemingly perfect opportunity to write routines for older, cooler, impossibly funny Leo arises . . . well, what's a girl to do? But is Leo quite as interested in helping Haylah as he says he is?

Rebecca Elliott is an award-winning and bestselling author of over 30 books for children, including her ongoing series Owl Diaries which has sold over 6 million copies worldwide.


One night before putting him to bed, Enaiatollah's mother tells him three things: don't use drugs or weapons, don't cheat, don't steal. The next day he wakes up to find she isn't there. Left to fend for himself, Enaiatollah embarks on a perilous journey to reach Italy. Over five years he will travel through continents, over mountains and across borders, all in the hopes of eventually reaching safety.

This is the true story of danger and courage and of a series of incredible strokes of fortune which enabled Enaiatollah to reach his destination, and form a friendship with an Italian family.


Mila and her sisters live with their brother Oskar in a small forest cabin in the snow. One night, a fur-clad stranger arrives seeking shelter for himself and his men. But by the next morning, they've gone - taking Oskar with them. Fearful for his safety, Mila and her sisters set out to bring Oskar back - even it means going north, crossing frozen wild-lands to find a way past an eternal winter.

Kiran Millwood Hargrave is a British author, poet, and playwright. Her debut book, The Girl of Ink & Stars, won the Waterstones Children's Book Prize, and British Children's Book of the Year. Her second book, The Island at the End of Everything, received starred reviews from Kirkus, Booklist, and VOYA.


In a secret supernatural battle that's been raging for over a century, the stakes have just been raised. When Jamie Carpenter's mother is kidnapped by strange creatures, he finds himself dragged into Department 19, the government's most secret agency. He's determined to find his mother, and to kill the vampires who want him dead. But something much older is stirring, something even Department 19 can't stand up against...

Will Hill is an award-winning author and screenwriter. He has won the YA Book Prize and been shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal . Department 19, his debut novel, is the first in a five book series which was a bestseller in the UK and has been translated into more than a dozen languages.


Summer in London is hot, the hottest on record, and there's been a murder in THE TRI: the high-rise home to resident know-it-alls, Nik and Norva. Who better to solve the case?

Armed with curiosity, home-turf knowledge and unlimited time - until the end of the summer holidays anyway - Nik and Norva are determined to find out what happened.

High-Rise Mystery, Sharna Jackson's debut novel, won numerous awards and accolades including Best Book for Younger Readers at the 2020 Waterstones Book Prize and Sunday Times Book of the Week. The sequel, Mic Drop, was released in 2020. Sharna also develops books to encourage participation in the arts.


When Nicky finds Jezbo and his gang digging up a badger set, there's not a lot he can do to save them. But one badger cub has escaped - can Nicky save it?

Anthony McGowan is the author of many critically acclaimed YA novels including Hellbent and The Knife That Killed Me, which has been released as a film. He won the 2006 BookTrust Teenage Prize, the 2007 Catalyst Award and has been shortlisted for a raft of other major literature prizes, including the 2018 Carnegie Medal .


Prentisstown isn't like other towns. Everyone can hear everyone else's thoughts in a constant, overwhelming Noise. There is no privacy. There are no secrets. Then Todd Hewitt unexpectedly stumbles on a spot of complete silence. Which is impossible. And now he's going to have to run...

The Knife of Never Letting Go is the first in Patrick Ness's 'Chaos Walking' trilogy for young adults. The series has won a number of awards including the 2008 Guardian Children's Fiction Prize and the BookTrust Teenage Prize 2009 and the Costa Children's Book Award. Later books include A Monster Calls, which won the Carnegie Medal in 2012 and was adapted into a film.


Meet Stewart. He's geeky, gifted and sees things a bit differently to most people. His mum has died and he misses her all the more now he and Dad have moved in with Ashley and her mum. Meet Ashley. She's popular, cool and sees things very differently to her new family. Her dad has come out and moved out - but not far enough. And now she has to live with a freakazoid step-brother. And things are about to get a whole lot more mixed up when these two very different people attract the attention of school hunk Jared. . .

Susin Nielsen got her start writing for popular television series, Degrassi Junior High. Since then, she’s written for many Canadian TV shows and her young adult novels have received considerable critical acclaim, including We Are All Made of Molecules which was longlisted for the Carnegie Medal.


Running. That's all Ghost (real name Castle Cranshaw) has ever known.

But Ghost has been running for the wrong reasons -until he meets Coach, an ex-Olympic Medallist who sees something in Ghost: crazy natural talent. If Ghost can stay on track, literally and figuratively, he could be the best sprinter in the city. Can Ghost harness his raw talent for speed, or will his past finally catch up to him?

Jason Reynolds is a multi-award winning and #1 New York Times bestselling author and serves as the 2020-2021 National Ambassador for Young People's Literature.


1910. A cabin north of the Arctic Circle. Fifteen-year-old Sig Andersson is alone. Alone, except for the corpse of his father, who died earlier that day. His sister, Anna, and step-mother, Nadya, have gone to the local town for help.

Then comes a knock at the door. Sig has never seen him before but Wolff claims to have unfinished business with his father.

As Sig gradually learns the awful truth about Wolff's connection to his father, his thoughts are drawn to a certain box hidden on a shelf in the storeroom, in which lies his father's prized possession - a revolver.

Marcus is a writer of 40 books for adults and young adults and children. He is winner of many prizes, most notably the 2014 Michael L. Printz Award for his novel Midwinterblood.


Tabby lives a transient life with her mum Cate, never sticking in one place long enough to make friends. Until one day, an accident changes everything. Cate is arrested and Tabby realises her life has been a lie: Cate is not her mother. As she adjusts to her new life, Tabby finds herself drawn to the ocean and enrolls at a swimming summer school. But all is not as it seems. She and her new friends are cut off from the outside world and she's plagued by a repeating symbol of interlocking circles. Tabi begins to uncover the truth but a shocking secret awaits her - a secret hidden in her DNA...

Teri Terry's books have won over a dozen regional and national book awards. She has also at various times and in various countries been a lawyer, an optometrist, a teaching assistant, and a science technician.


In a dangerous future, huge motorized cities hunt, attack and fight each other for survival. As London pursues a small town, young apprentice Tom is flung out into the wastelands, where a terrifying cyborg begins to hunt him down.

Philip Reeve is a very successful author best known for the multi award-winning Mortal Engines quartet, which won the Nestlé Children's Book Prize, the Blue Peter Book Award, and the Guardian Children's Book Award. Philip has also won the prestigious CILIP Carnegie Medal for Here Lies Arthur.


We all have a mind, so we all need to take care of our mental health just as much as our physical health. The first step is being able to talk about it. Juno Dawson leads the way with this frank, factual and funny book, with added information and support from clinical psychologist Dr Olivia Hewitt. Juno and Olivia talk clearly and supportively about a range of issues facing young people's mental health and how to manage them. With real-life stories from young people around the world.

Juno Dawson is a bestselling novelist, screenwriter, journalist and a columnist for Attitude Magazine. Her writing has appeared in Glamour, The Pool, Dazed and the Guardian and she has also written for and appeared on television. She won the 2020 YA Book Prize for her novel Meat Market.


The Story of a Childhood and The Story of a Return.

The intelligent and outspoken child of radical Marxists, and the great-granddaughter of Iran's last emperor, Satrapi bears witness to a childhood uniquely entwined with the history of her country. Persepolis paints an unforgettable portrait of daily life in Iran and of the bewildering contradictions between home life and public life. This is a beautiful and intimate story full of tragedy and humour - raw, honest and incredibly illuminating.

Marjane Satrapi is an Iranian artist, director, and writer whose graphic novels explore the gaps and the junctures between East and West. Persepolis is her astonishing visual memoir and is was adapted into an animated film written and directed by Satrapi herself in 2007.


Boy meets boy. Boys become friends. Boys fall in love. An LGBTQ+ graphic novel about life, love, and everything that happens in between. Heartstopper is about love, friendship, loyalty and mental illness. It encompasses all the small stories of Nick and Charlie's lives that together make up something larger which speaks to all of us.

Alice Oseman is a British author/illustrator who has written four YA novels, the first of which was published when she was just 19 and the latest of which, Loveless, won the 2021 YA Book Prize. Her work has been nominated for the Inky Awards, the Cargegie Medal, and the Goodreads Choice Award. Heartstopper began as a webcomic and 4 volumes have now been published, it has been shortlised for the 2020 British Book Awards Children's Illustrated & Non-Fiction Book of the Year, longlisted for the 2020 Polari Book Prize, and is currently being adapted for television by Netflix.


The most authoritative book yet about climate change for teenagers. Are you ready to change everything? Forget everything you think you know about climate change. This book explains why the planet desperately needs our help and how you can use your power to change the world through climate activism. Where are we? How did we get here? What happens next? Includes notes on the COVID-19 pandemic, 2020, and how you can get involved to make the world a safer and better place.

Naomi Klein is an award-winning journalist and New York Times bestselling author. In 2017 she joined The Intercept as Senior Correspondent. Recent articles have also appeared in the Guardian, The Nation, The New York Times, the New Yorker and Le Monde. In November 2016 she was awarded the Sydney Peace Prize in Australia. How to Change Everything is her eighth book and her first for young people.


Silence is NEVER an option - stand up, speak out, be the difference. In this book, Stuart talks about what he has learned from life - the tools that have helped him live positively and kept him moving forward when times have been tough. From role models to self-control, failure to imagination, Stuarts aim with this book is to use his own experience to help young people - to help all people - harness the good in themselves and in the world around them, using that fire of positivity to create change in their lives.

Stuart Lawrence is the younger brother of Stephen Lawrence, the young man who, on 22nd April 1993, at the age of just 18, was murdered in an unprovoked racist attack. Stuart is an educator and motivational speaker, dedicated to helping transform the life chances of young people.

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