Book of the Month: November & December

by Emma Sewell
by Emma Sewell

Book of the MonthFor this Book of the Month, we’ve packed together November and December in one go! Both months might be slower publishing months than the others, but don’t worry, it doesn’t mean there are less exciting books!

So, not only have you got a Book of the Month, you’ve also got NINE top picks, AND a seasonal Book of the Month!

Take a look at what we’ve picked below, and remember to let us know what you thought of them in the comments!

Book of the Month Freakboy 9781250062956Book of the Month

Freakboy by Kristin Elizabeth Clark

(Square Fish 9781250062956 01/12/16)

From the outside, Brendan Chase seems to have it pretty easy. He’s a star wrestler, a video game aficionado, and a loving boyfriend to his seemingly perfect match, Vanessa.

But on the inside, Brendan struggles to understand why his body feels so wrong… why he sometimes fantasises about having long hair, soft skin, and gentle curves.

Is there even a name for guys like him? Guys who sometimes what to be girls? Or is Brendan just a freak?

In razor-sharp verse, Clark folds three narratives into one powerful story. Brendan trying to understand his sexual identity, Vanessa fighting to keep her and Brendan’s relationship alive, and Angel struggling to confront her demons.

Nine Top Picks

Bone Gap by Laura Ruby (Faber & Faber 9780571332755)

He’d been drawn here by the grass and the bees and the strange sensation that this was a magical place, that the bones of the world were a little looser here, double-jointed, twisting back on themselves, leaving spaces one could slip into and hide . . .

Everyone knows Bone Gap is full of gaps – gaps to trip you up, gaps to slide through so you can disappear forever. So when young, beautiful Roza goes missing, the people of Bone Gap aren’t surprised. After all, it isn’t the first time someone’s slipped away and left Finn and Sean O’Sullivan on their own.

Finn knows that’s not what happened with Roza. He knows she was taken, ripped from the cornfields by a man whose face he can’t remember. But no one believes him anymore. Well, almost no one. Petey Willis, the beekeeper’s daughter, suspects that lurking behind Finn’s fearful shyness is a story worth uncovering. But as we, like Petey, follow the stories of Finn, Roza, and the people of Bone Gap – their melancholy pasts, their terrifying presents, their uncertain futures – the truth about what happened to Roza is slowly revealed. And it is stranger than you can possibly imagine.

Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge (Balzer and Bray 9780062224743)

The romance of Beauty and the Beast meets the adventure of Graceling in a dazzling fantasy novel about our deepest desires and their power to change our destiny. For fans of bestselling An Ember in the Ashes and A Court of Thorns and Roses, this gorgeously written debut infuses the classic fairy tale with glittering magic, a feisty heroine, and a romance sure to take your breath away.

Betrothed to the evil ruler of her kingdom, Nyx has always known that her fate was to marry him, kill him, and free her people from his tyranny. But on her seventeenth birthday when she moves into his castle high on the kingdom’s mountaintop, nothing is what she expected-particularly her charming and beguiling new husband. Nyx knows she must save her homeland at all costs, yet she can’t resist the pull of her sworn enemy-who’s gotten in her way by stealing her heart.

Game Theory by Barry Jonsberg (Allen & Unwin Children’s Books 9781743368763)

Game theory has brought me to this point and I must follow where it leads. Even though this is not a game.

Jamie is a sixteen-year-old maths whiz. Summerlee, his older sister, is in the grip of a wild phase. Tensions at home run high.

When Summerlee wins a $7.5-million lottery, she cuts all ties with her family. But money can cause trouble – big trouble. And when Jamie’s younger sister Phoebe is kidnapped for a ransom, the family faces a crisis almost too painful to bear.

Jamie thinks he can use game theory – the strategy of predicting an opponent’s actions – to get Phoebe back. But can he outfox the kidnapper? Or is he putting his own and his sister’s life at risk?


Bone Gap 9780571332755 cruel_beauty_9780062224743 Game Theory 9781743368763

Instructions for a Second-Hand Heart by Tamsyn Murray (Usborne Publishing Ltd 9781474906500)

Jonny has a faulty heart and his time is running out. Niamh has just lost her twin brother in a tragic accident. As their fates collide, soon Jonny is on the mend – but desperate to know more about his donor. When he tracks down Niamh, he only intends to find out about her brother, the first owner of his heart. He doesn’t plan on falling in love…

A stunning, tear-jerking novel about grief, guilt, and the unpredictability of love.

The Improbably Theory of Ana & Zak (HarperCollins 9780062272782)

When Ana Watson’s brother ditches a high school trip to run wild at Washingcon, type-A Ana knows that she must find him or risk her last shot at freedom from her extra-controlling parents.

In her desperation, she’s forced to enlist the last person she’d ever want to spend time with, slacker Zak Duquette, to help find her brother before morning comes. But over the course of the night, while being chased by hordes of costumed Vikings and zombies, Ana and Zak begin to open up to each other. Soon, what starts as the most insane nerdfighter manhunt transforms into so much more…

Light That Gets Lost by Natasha Carthew (Bloomsbury Publishing PLC 9781408835876)

A small boy hiding in a cupboard witnesses something no child should ever see. He tries not to look but he still hears it. And when he comes out, there’s no mistaking. His mum and dad have been killed. And though he’s only small, he swears that he’ll get revenge one day.

Years later, Trey goes to a strange camp that is meant to save troubled teenagers. It’s packed with crazies, god-botherers, devoted felons and broken kids. Trey’s been in and out of trouble ever since the day the bad thing happened, but he’s not here for saving: this is where he’ll find the man who did it.

Revenge and healing, salvation and hell are a boiling, dangerous mix, and Trey finds himself drawn to a girl, a dream and the offer of friendship in the dark.

Instructions for a Second-Hand Heart 9781474906500 Improbable Theory of Ana and Zak 9780062272782 Light That Gets Lost 9781408835876

Pushing Perfect by Michelle Falkoff (HarperCollins Children’s Books 9780008110697)

Kara Winters is always striving for perfection. But when her anxiety takes over, the price of perfection spirals out of control…’Perfect’ Kara Winters has always hated her nickname. Especially now that she no longer lives up to it.

She used to have normal friends, she used to be normal. Now all she wants is to get into Harvard and leave high school behind. So when the pressure to ace her exams finally gets to her, Kara does one tiny bad thing, just to help out, to ease the stress. If it will help Kara get a perfect exam score and one step closer to a new life, it’s a price she’s willing to pay.

But she never expects to get caught out. Or that Alex, Raj and her other not-so-perfect new friends might get embroiled in a horrible mess that could ruin all of their futures. Sometimes perfection isn’t what it’s cracked up to be.

Scarlett Undercover by Jennifer Latham (Little, Brown Young Readers 9780316283946)

Meet Scarlett, a smart, sarcastic, kick-butt, Muslim American heroine, ready to take on crime in her hometown of Las Almas.

When a new case finds the private eye caught up in a centuries-old battle of evil genies and ancient curses, Scarlett discovers that her own family secrets may have more to do with the situation than she thinks — and that cracking the case could lead to solving her father’s murder.

What Not To Do If You Turn Invisible by Ross Welford (HarperCollins Children’s Books 9780008156350)

Turning invisible at will: it’s one way of curing your acne. But far more drastic than 13 year-old Ethel Leatherhead intended when she tried a combination of untested medicines and a sunbed.

It’s fun at first, being invisible. And aided by her friend Boydy, she manages to keep her extraordinary ability secret. Or does she…? When one day the invisibility fails to wear off, Ethel is thrown into a nightmare of lies and deception as she struggles to keep herself safe, to find the remedy that will make her seen again – and solve the mystery of her own birth.

Pushing Perfect 9780008110697 Scarlett Undercover 9780316283946 What Not To Do If You Turn Invisible 9780008156350

A Boy Called Christmas 9781782118268Christmas Book of the Month Special

A Boy Called Christmas by Matt Haig

Illustrated by Chris Mould

(Canongate Books Ltd 9781782118268 03/11/16)


You are about to read the TRUE story of Father Christmas. If you are one of those people who believe that some things are impossible, you should put this book down right away. (Because this book is FULL of impossible things.)

Are you still reading? Good. Then let us begin…

Also out this month is The Girl Who Saved Christmas – If magic has a beginning, can it also have an end? When Amelia wants a wish to come true she knows just the man to ask – Father Christmas.

Remember to let us know what your favourite new titles are in November and December below!

Happy reading!


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