Results of the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize in the year 2007.
Sixteen-year-old Lucas Swain becomes intrigued by the urn of ashes left in a cab office. Convinced that its occupant -- Violet Park -- is communicating with him, he contrives to gain possession of the urn, little realising that his quest will take him on a voyage of self-discovery and identity, forcing him to finally confront what happened to his absent (and possibly dead) father!
Silvano and Chiara are two teenagers with a difference. Silvano has been accused of a murder he did not commit. Chiara has been ousted out of her family as a young woman with no marriage prospects. For these two very different reasons they are forced to seek refuge in a convent and a friary. And when they meet, they are both instantly aware that they alone are not accustomed to the religious clothes and customs. And when not just one murder - but then another, and then another, happens to both the friars and guests staying with them, Chiara and Silvano cling together within the terrifying spiral of murder as they and the friends they make attempt to solve the deadly mystery.
This is weird, wacky and one in a million: a cross between Roald Dahl and Monty Python. Mr. Gum is back in this second hilarious book and he's as nasty as ever! In fact, he's absolutely grimsters. But this book's not just about him. Read this book and you'll meet a gingerbread man named Alan Taylor who has electric muscles! Plus, all our favourite characters are back: the little girl called Polly, the evil butcher called Billy William The Third, and the very wise man, Friday O'Leary. And, who could forget loveable Jake the dog, or the angry fairy who lives in Mr. Gum's bathtub and whacks him on the head with a frying-pan? This book will have you crying with laughter!
Nian is 'discovered' as a boy with special powers, and whisked away to be an apprentice in the House of Truth. He immediately resolves to escape - but there's only one way he can think of to get out, and that's to learn to fly. Unfortunately his powers are rather hard to control, and the process involves a certain amount of banging his head on the ceiling. Then he finds a place where the boundaries between the worlds are thin, and he stumbles into our world. There he meets Jacob, who helps him as he learns to speak the language and to start to come to grips with the funny habits of people in this world, and to start to see how he might find a place here. But then the House of Truth send someone through to hunt him down and fetch him back, and the equilibrium of the worlds starts to break down. Nian knows he will have to go back - but first he will have to rescue his pursuer, who is causing mayhem wherever he goes, and on the way help Jacob and his family through some tricky situations. On his return to the House of Truth he will use his new experiences and knowledge to change the way of life there forever.
Coronation Year, 1953, and in Oldbury, a Coronation football competition is organized. It's Spencer's idea to get a team up - some of the players are good, and one of them is even a girl, but all of them are football crazy. The Malt Shovel Rovers team, despite various calamities, is ready and eager to beat off the opposition and win the cup in this funny and moving story of football and friendship, in a world when the streets were full of kids and empty of cars. Not only for boys - for girls too - of 9+, there's a real pull of nostalgia for adults as well, and, of course, for all lovers of football, whether on the pitch or in the park.
The smartly painted exterior of the City Community Faith School hides a disturbing secret. Behind its walls, one thousand girls are forced to labour in the city's laundry, separated from their families and deprived of their freedom. One of these girls is Little Fearless, a courageous spirit who never gives up hope that one day they will be rescued. Unafraid of the punishment she will face, Little Fearless escapes the institute to tell her story to the world. But why does nobody believe she's telling the truth?
As the city of San Juan pulses to summer's sluggish beat, its teenage football prodigy El Brujito, the Little Magician, vanishes without trace. Paul Faustino, South America's top sports journalist, is reluctantly drawn into the mystery. As a story of corruption and murder unfolds, he is forced to confront a bitter history of slavery, and the power of the occult.
Deep in the City something had been woken, so old that people had been walking past it for centuries without giving it a second look!
When George breaks the dragon's head outside the Natural History Museum he awakes an ancient power. This prehistoric beast, sentry-still for centuries, hunts him down with a terrifying wrath. And this is just the beginning! The taints and spits - statues with opposing natures - are warring forces; wreaking deadly havoc on the city landscape. The World War One gunner offers protection of sorts; and the wisdom of the Sphinx is legendary. But George and his companion Edie are trapped in a world of danger. And worse - they are quite alone. The rest of London is oblivious to their plight.
This epic adventure exposes forces long-layered in the fabric of London. After entering its richly original and breathtaking world, the city streets and skyline will never again seem the same!