Cover Story: Family

Here are our librarians' picks:


Eve Ainsworth

When Alfie’s Mum dies, he and his dad feel completely lost. Although Alfie is a talented footballer he gradually stops playing in his team because without his mother watching him from the sidelines it all seems so pointless. His dad spends less and less time at home, meaning he and Alfie are starting to drift apart. Then Alfie meets Alice, who has problems of her own, and they find they can support one another through their difficulties.

ISBN 9781407185446 - Scholastic: 2019

cover of the book Lost


Sarah Crossan

On the run from a violent father, Allison takes refuge in a shed in the garden of an empty house. But the house isn’t empty and the old woman who lives there, suffering from dementia, thinks that Allison is her long-lost friend Toffee.

Allison plays along and before long the two are close. But can Allison keep up the pretence and deceive her new friend for ever? And can she just abandon her old life?

ISBN 9781408868126 - Bloomsbury: 2019 - e-book available

cover of the book Toffee

A Pinch of Magic

Michelle Harrison

Betty wants nothing more than to leave her island home and go adventuring so, she is heartbroken when her grandmother reveals that their family is cursed never to leave. Along with her sisters, she decides to find a way to break the curse by any means necessary. With the help of a prisoner, a rat and just a pinch of magic, Betty and her sisters find an adventure far more exciting – and dangerous – than they could have imagined.

ISBN 9781471124297 - Simon and Schuster: 2019 - e-book available

cover of the book A pinch of magic

Becoming Jo

Sophie McKenzie

Jo March, aspiring writer, takes us through a year of turmoil in the lives of the four very different March sisters as they adjust to a smaller house and a new town after their mother loses her job. There is bickering and family dramas, some serious, but also new friends to be made and romance to be found in this clever updating of 'Little Women' that works just as well even if you don’t know the original.

ISBN 9781407188157 - Scholastic: 2019

cover of the book Becoming Jo

Paper Avalanche

Lisa Williamson

Rosie realises that her mother’s compulsive hoarding has got out of hand and is afraid that Social Services may intervene if they discover the extent of her chaotic home life. She tries to hide her problems by distancing herself from her classmates and becoming a loner. But Tanvi is determined to befriend Rosie and persuades her to seek the help both she and her mother need. A sensitive and positive tale of friendship and hope.

ISBN 9781910989968 - David Fickling: 2019 - e-book available

cover of the book Paper Avalanche

Updated: 4 November 2019