Longer books for confident 6yo(21 Posts)
DS is an enthusiastic reader and reads quickly (for example tonight he has read The Giggler Treatment & it took him less than an hour). He and gets through around 10 library books a week of around 100 pages each on top of his school books.
We are going on hols for 2 weeks soon and so I'd like to stock up on some longer books to keep him going (ideally 200+ pages). Any recommendations?
I got George's Secret to the Universe out for him the other day and while he's read a good few chapters of it it hasn't particularly grabbed him. Just got Cosmic by Frank Cottrell Boyce out today - he hasn't started it yet but it looks as if it might be okay.
He likes books aimed at older children but although his level of comprehension is good I want to avoid stuff that's too mature for him in content. For example I don't really want him to start on Harry Potter as he'd be scared by it - I'd rather he waits until he's old enough to really enjoy it.
He's read pretty much every Jeremy Strong book & all the Wimpy Kids and the ideal thing for him would be a Jeremy Strong book 1000 pages long. He likes fast moving, funny stuff and hasn't been too keen on the more classic stuff so far.
I'd also be interested in hearing about any shorter stories collected - we can take 14 books out of the library at the same time so if we can take several in one that would be great.
I'd go for classics if you can persuade him that way - the length / content ratio is much better value . Swallows & Amazons is fantastic for young confident readers, as it is actually not that complex, but it is a lovely story and not only is it long there are 12 of them.
Other books I'd definitely recommend are Professor Branestawm (perfect for a 6 y/o sense of humour), maybe the Charlie Bone series (very similar to Harry Potter but less dark).
Thanks Takver. I think I've got a Professor Branestawm one on order. Haven't heard of Charlie Bone so will check that out.
Might try sneaking in a classic or two seeing as he will have to like what we bring along or lump it. He might like Swallows and Amazons as he does like a bit of adventure, as long as it's not like Famous Five where they're still sitting around the breakfast table talking about where they're going on their holidays by the end of the first chapter! He's read the Dinosaur Cove series (adventure) and enjoyed them.
Just been into his room and he was on page 130 something of Cosmic (I know - I'll get arrested by the MN police but If I take his book away he'll just stay awake till 11 anyway so he might as well be reading). This is what I'm up against!
Mr Gum books are usually very popular.
Also the Spy Dog/Spy Pup series by Andrew Cope. And the Astrosaurs and Cows In Action books by Steve Cole, and Urgum The Axeman by Kjarten Poskett (?).
Lots of the Michael Morpurgo books would be suitable too.
Has he read How to Train Your Dragon? And Mr Gum? My DD also loved Charlotte's Web at that age.
Ooh also The Firework Maker's Daughter by Philip Pullman?
Have you considered Beast Quest? is v formulaic but very popular and the adventures and beasts are very carefully made exciting enough to hold young DC's attention but not as gore filled as the cover suggests.
Oh yes - and there's always David Walliams.
my 6 yr old loves David Walliams, Gangster granny is good.
Please keep the suggestions coming ... we are looking for quantity rather than quality for the hols but even if they don't tick the 200 page box I'm making a note of all your recommendations for when we get back and beyond.
He's read How to Train Your Dragon & Mr Gum and enjoyed them but didn't really want to bother with the rest of the series for some reason. Same with Astrosaurs - we have loads upstairs but I've never been able to convince him to try them. They are the kind of thing he whizzes through in an hour anyway so probably not for the hols.
We have some Narnia books upstairs which I'd forgotten about but not the whole series from the beginning - do they need to be read in order?
Michael Morpurgo - he's read the Butterfly Lion but I don't think he really got it. I don't think there were enough fart gags for him so maybe one to revisit when he's a bit older! I like the idea of Philip Pullman as well but it might be a bit sophisticated for DS - will check out the Firework Maker's Daughter anyway. Will get Charlotte's Web as well - I remember enjoying that as a child.
David Walliams - we have Mr Stink upstairs that was bought as a present a while back but I remember flicking through and thinking it was possibly a bit old for him. Can't remember exactly why - slightly nasty in tone maybe? Or maybe I've just seen too much Little Britain. I'll have another look & also check out Gangster Granny.
Kjarten Poskett is the one who does the Murderous Maths isn't he? DS read one of those the other day and liked it a lot so will definitely check that out.
Have heard of Beast Quest but not seen them - will check them out but I've got a feeling they might be too short for the hols. Not heard of Spy Dog/Spy Pup so will have a look at those too.
He's enjoying the Frank Cottrell Boyce one so I'll get some more of those as well.
Thanks again - some great suggestions so far.
Eoin Colfer does some books for younger children, such as Spud Murphy.
Kjarten Poskett does indeed write the Murderous Maths books. If he liked them, he might like Horrible Histories by Terry Deary, or Horrible Geographies by Anita Ganeri. There are also Horrible Sciences, but can't remember who wrote them!
The Paddington books might appeal. Michael Bond also wrote a series of books about Olga Da Polga, a guinea pig. There are also the Humphrey the Hamster books, which are lovely. By Betty Birney.
If he likes jokes about farts, one of the London Museums (Science Museum?) do a book called Why Do Farts Smell Like Rotten Eggs? There is another one in the series about Burps. Obviously non fiction books, lots of questions with answers and typically appeal to small boys!
He might also like the Guinness Book of Records.
The BeastQuest books are a decent length, and theres loads of them <weeps from the repetition>. But 6-8 year old boys seem to love them dearly.
How about the Phoenix and the Carpet or 5 Children and It?
Sorry if I'm stating the obvious, but I loved Roald Dahl when I was six. Some are quite short but Matilda, The Witches, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Danny the Champion of the World are all a bit longer. Was speaking to a teacher recently who disapproves of Roald Dahl and told me that children don't like them as they're too scary. She must come across completely different children to any I've ever met!
Also enjoyed reading The Sheep Pig by Dick King Smith, and The Borrowers series by Mary Norton.
I personally wouldn't recommend the Narnia series - I loved the TV adaptations in the late 80s/early 90s, and adore the film of The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe that came out in 2005, but even as a small child I remember finding the books very patronisingly written. I was speaking to a friend recently who said the exact same thing. But that's just my personal opinion.
Will keep thinking!
I am Rat, Phillip Pullman
Anything by Enid Blyton
The More the Merrier, Anne Fine
The Diary of a Killer Cat, Ann Fine
Anything by Roald Dahl
My dd2 has just read the 3 Eoin Colfer books for younger kids - The Legend of Spud Murphy and the other 2 . She flew through them but really really enjoyed them. She's very young so I was a bit confussed over her capability v her emotional understanding. But she got on great with them.
She is currently working her way through The Worst Witch books and The Owl who was afraid to fly and the like were a big hit.
She has already read the Wimpy Kid series and enjoyed them.
Cosmic is a brilliant book; however, Frank Cottrell Boyce wrote it for a much older age group than 6. I think you need to be older to appreciate the themes; the relationship between father and son, and the discovery of what it means to be an adult and a parent and the responsibility that brings. I'd be slightly careful about buying him more books by Frank Cottrell Boyce at this age, especially if you're worried about older themes and reluctant to give him books such as 'Mr Stink'. 'Millions' for example deals with bereavement. Once he's older however, I can't think of a better author for him to read.
My recommendation would be 'The Indian in the Cupboard.' It's got a bit of everything; history, fantasy, real life and it's extremely well written. It's the first in a series so if he likes those, then you're set for a bit
Thanks for all the tips.
Good point re Frank Cottrell Boyce. I did end up reading some of Cosmic with him and agree it's way too old. It also had too many cultural references which would go straight over his head (Jennifer Aniston's depression anyone?). However if you ask him if there's any bits he doesn't understand he says no. I think you filter out a lot of the stuff you don't understand at that age (I remember watching Grease when I was 7 then being amazed how much I'd missed when I watched it again as a teenager). He enjoyed it enough to pick out Millions from the books we had reserved for him at the library the other day but I think I might sneak that one back to the library. If nothing else it's a waste of a good book if he doesn't appreciate big chunks of it isn't it?
Indian in the Cupboard sounds promising - have just put it on order.
Roald Dahl - yeah I always forget about him. He's read George's Marvellous Medicine and Fantastic Mr Fox and maybe a couple of others so could try Matilda or Charlie & the Chocolate Factory.
We have The Worst Witch upstairs and I don't think he's read it but it's short so maybe one for when we get back. Will have a look at the Anne Fine & Eoin Colfer book after the hols too.
Enid Blyton - he does bring home a lot of Mr Meddle stories from school but I haven't been able to get him into Famous Five yet (hasn't got the patience for the
tedious long build up yet). I don't know what other Enid Blytons there are that are 200+ pages so open to suggestions.
Borrowers/Phoenix & the Carpet etc. - I remember liking that kind of stuff when I was a child but I think he just gets turned off by how slow and old-fashioned it seems compared to Soccer Mad Summat and the rest. Still will make a note for a later date - all for broadening his horizons when he's feeling more receptive. I'll also have a closer look at the Narnia books and see if they look like his cup of tea (I suspect not to be honest). Not sure he'd be into books about guinea pigs & hamsters either but you never know!
He piped up with "I don't want to check out the Firework Maker's Daughter Mummy" the other after reading this thread over my shoulder. He'd seen it on Bringing Books to Life on TV and it's "not his kind of book" apparently. So maybe not Philip Pullman just yet. Oh and Dick King Smith is out as he's "too boring and traditional".
In other words more Jeremy Strong please.
Actually I'm quite happy for him to read any old stuff as long as he enjoys it - there's nothing I like more than hearing the belly laughs coming thick and fast from his room and there's plenty of time for him to develop a taste for literature. But on a practical note for the hols I just want some books that are long enough to keep him entertained.
Just been back on the library website and it looks like there are a couple of longer Allan Ahlberg books on there so will have a look at those. He loved the Man Who Wore All His Clothes series so they might appeal.
Interesting post. I have a similar age boy (6,7 in October), also a great reader, but doesn't get through quite the volume that your son does! Might be partly because we are evil, victorian parents who have imposed a light's out time . Only did this as otherwise he was reading until all hours and VERY grumpy the next day.
DS re-reads all his Horrid Henry's and Jeremy Strong's, but recently is really into Horrible Histories and non fiction. He seems to enjoy re-reading as much as new stuff so that's good! I've just bought him Charlotte's Web and the new Horrid Henry for the holiday, but will get things out of the library too and take the Horrible Histories with us. Oh yes, almost forgot, there is also the Horrible Science series. DS got quite a few from the library and seems to have an insatiable appetite for them.
Ds has just turned 6yo and has discovered my collection of old children's stories. In the last few weeks he's been through the following:
Mystery at Witchend (Malcolm Saville)
Farmer Boy (Laura Ingles Wilder-he's read some of the others too)
The Castle in the Attic
Storm Ahead (Monica Edwards)
The Horse and His boy (CS Lewis-he needed some help for that)
We didn't mean to go to sea (Arthur Ransome)
Demon Island (Cecil Baldrock I think)
The Pinhoe Egg (Diana Wynne Jones)
The Kestral's plot adventure (Stanley Mason)
Castle of Adventure (Enid Blyton-he's now desperate for a parrot!)
Various Horrible Histories and Horrible Geography
One of the Rainbow Fairies (he said it was "nearly interesting when Jack Frost appeared" I don't think he'd recommend it, but dd2 thought he might enjoy it )
Lots of non fiction, mostly about WWII, planes, WWII and planes, planes and WWII.... and possible dinosaurs.
We're currently reading Wind in the Willows together. He was interested in it after hearing "Toad of Toad Hall" but it's too much for him on his own, so we're reading it together.
Other ones I'd suggest are Roman Mysteries (Caroline Lawrence), and some children love Roal Dahl.
Enid Blyton did loads of different series.
Famous Five obviously. And Secret Seven.
Series called "The Secret ...." The first one is The Secret Island - three children are being horribly mistreated (in gentle Enid Blyton terms) by their wicked aunt and uncle so they run away, joining up with a boy from a neighbouring farm, and the four of them live by themselves on a secret island for nine months or so, avoiding detection.
Series called "The Mystery of..." featuring 'the Five Find Outers and Dog'. The first is The Mystery of the Burnt Cottage. Also features a silly village bobby that the children always outwit which provides a lot of the humour. (There's a box set on Amazon).
The series "The ..... of Adventure". First one is the Island of Adventure. Here on Amazon as a box set. www.amazon.co.uk/Enid-Blyton-Adventure-collection-Mountain/dp/B0045UE52A/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1374577953&sr=8-3&keywords=enid+blyton+circus+collection
She also wrote a one-off called The Boy Next Door, about 3 children who have a mysterious child come to stay next door, who turns out to be at the centre of a kidnapping plot.
And if you put Enid Blyton's circus collection into Amazon there's a set of 3 books about a circus, if that's his sort of thing!
Hope that helps!
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