Carnegie Long List – the challenge to read them all 2012/13

Shock, horror….. Robert Swindells has written a book about World War Two. Sigh! Still this one is set just after the end of the war, rationing is still in place, the ‘yanks’ are still hanging around, and ghosts haunt the empty house at the end of a shadowy lane. Or do they? A very easy book to read, short chapters of 3 or 4 pages long. I ended up playing, spot the chapter title whilst I read. Not a great deal of detail -but it is a simple read, and a slightly different approach to…. No can’t say anymore as I’d give the game away. So is it a War story or a school story? Not sure – but it’s definitely not a ghost story.


Carnegie – the Challenge to read all of the long list 2012/13

I like Unrest. It was different and sophisticated and obviously for the young adult market. 17 year old Elliot is struggling with life after his brush with death in hit and run accident. He can, apparently see, hear and feel ghosts during his sleep and periods of sleep paralysis. He takes matters into his own hands by getting a job at a haunted museum, meets a girl there, and discovers more than he bargained for. A good page turner, with some unexpected twists, and a grisly but satisfying ending.


Carnegie the long list challenge to read them all 2012/13

A ghost story with a difference. Not your normal ghost story, and not your ‘normal’ hero. Instead a confused, bruised, overweight boy is dragged to a holiday park with his borderline alcoholic father, and meets a girl. Not your typical love story, but Daniel is attracted to this slip of a girl whose body is covered in cuts and bruises that get worse over time rather than better. Strange huh? Well worth reading to find out why.


Carnegie – the challenge to read them all 2012/13

Sophia’s father suddenly arrives back from oversees and her life of freedom is over, instead she has to rebel against her cruel father who wants her married off as soon as possible. I would have been content if this story had followed this theme, of her trials and how she overcame the restrictions placed upon a “lady”, I even liked her nighttime adventures. But no the author has to twist in a spy plot, treason, and gunpowder. This, and the unsatisfactory ending, in my opinion, spoilt the main storyline.


Carnegie Long List the Challenge to read them all!

I told you I was on a roll! Here is my next review this time it is

The Unforgotten Coat by Frank Cottrell Boyce.


This book is a nice easy read, and since it is set in Year 6 will appeal to Primary age readers. The story is presented as if it was typed into a notebook with snapshots stuck in. The story is basically about two new students from Mongolia, they are a little bit different and adopt the main character is adopted as their “Good Guide”. They seem to be really superstitious and think they are being hunted by demons, and it is this story which leads to the emotional twist at the end. It is billed as “laugh out loud funny” but I’d have to disagree. I found the authors afterword to be thought provoking and I’d hope that students will go onto read this, as this provides the worthy inspiration for the story.
A simple read with a subtle political message.

Carnegie Long List Challenge

This year my challenge to read all of the Carnegie long list before the final winner is announced, hasn’t gone to plan. Well I’ve been Ill and unable to read as much as usual = boo!

However I have started to make up for lost time…..
Here is my first review.


Hitler’s Angel by William Osborne

Enid Blyton managed to “get rid of the parents” so that the Famous Five could go about adventuring. William has come up with a slightly unrealistic way of allowing our teenage heroes (one boy, one girl) to become a bit like SAS secret agents during World War Two with just two weeks training. Suspend all belief and enjoy a rip-roaring adventure, with a little bit of romance, and social conscience.

Carnegie Long List announced

The Carnegie Medal is awarded annually to the writer of an outstanding book for children.

The long list was  published and I could hardly wait!

Last year I set myself the challenge to read all the long list before the winner was announced  Рand although it felt like an impossible task at times, I actually managed to do it!

I have stopped myself from starting a new book this half term because I want to start straight away – I’m so keen I kept checking the Carnegie website all morning but there was no news until midday

If I have counted correctly there are 68 books on this years list – that’s a lot of quick reading.

Any books that the MRC doesn’t yet have we’ll be buying in (not just for me) but for all students to have access to as these are likely to be the ‘best’ books published this past year.

Again I’ll be sharing my experiences and thoughts on each book on this blog. Will I be able to predict the overall winner again? Probably not! Will I actually be able to read them all this time?

I’d better get reading!