My Father Is a Polar Bear 7+
“Look at the polar bears,” said Terry. “You see that one on the left, the fatter one? That’s our dad – our real dad. But you’re not to tell.”
Drawing on Michael Morpurgo’s own childhood experience of first seeing his real father on television, My Father Is a Polar Bear tells the story of two young brothers rediscovering their birth father in the most unlikely of places – and in an entirely unexpected guise! A warm and delightful tale of family bonds and love told by a master storyteller and beautifully illustrated by a talented new artist.
Our Jacko 8+
A deeply personal and tender story of war, peace and those who are left behind. One hundred years after the war to end all wars, Jacko’s descendants discover his notebook and the untold stories tucked in its pages.
“This war is a nightmare that one day I shall wake from and then forget. And if I don’t wake, then you shall never know. I don’t want you ever to know.” No one seems to know where the scruffy tin hat came from – just that it is very old, from some war or other long ago. To young Michael and his family it has its uses today: as a child’s toy, a feeding bowl for the hens, a hanging basket… Then Michael discovers that it belonged to his great-great-grandfather, “Our Jacko”, who lost his life at Ypres in 1915. As the boy digs deeper, he finds the young soldier’s diary and learns more about his forgotten ancestor – husband, father, poet, actor – who died so tragically young. And it becomes clear exactly how Our Jacko should be commemorated.
The Kites Are Flying! 7+
From the former Children’s Laureate and author of international phenomenon War Horse comes a moving tale celebrating the bright light of humanity surviving even in the darkest conflict.
Travelling to the West Bank to witness first hand what life is like for Palestinians and Jews living in the shadow of a dividing wall, journalist Max strikes up a friendship with an enigmatic Palestinian boy, Said. Together the two sit under an ancient olive tree while Said makes another of his kites. When Said takes Max home, the reporter learns of the terrible events in the family’s past and begins to understand why Said does not speak. Told from both Max’s and Said’s points of view, Morpurgo has created a beautiful tale of tragedy and hope with an ending that rings with joy.