Tag Archives: books

Favourite Books For 7 to12 Years, & Younger Children Too

As it’s World Book Day tomorrow, we decided to record our family’s favourite books for 7-12 year olds,

and also some of our all-time favourites from when the boys were younger.

Hugo is 10 years old, and is in Year 5 at school. His current top 10 favourite books are:

  • The Harry Potter series by JK Rowling – Hugo read Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone in Year 4 as a class, and has worked his way through the rest. He is currently reading The Half Blood Prince.
  • The Ghost of Thomas Kempe by Penelope Lively – he read this with his class in Year 5
  • The Titan – I think he means The Titan’s Curse, a Percy Jackson book by Rick Riordan. He hasn’t read this, but his class teacher has mentioned it, and he really wants to read it.
  • Room 13 by Robert Swindells – this is his current class book for Year 5, and is about a place near to us, Whitby
  • How To Train Your Dragon series by Cressida Cowell – we have read most of the books in this series, and Hugo got the last few he was missing recently at Barter Books.
  • Paw Tracks In The Moonlight by Denis O’Connor – this isn’t actually a children’s book, it’s one of mine, but Hugo is really enjoying it.
  • Krindlekrax by Philip Ridley – Hugo read this with his class in Year 4 and really enjoyed it. Toby has also read it at school this year, but didn’t like it as much.
  • Black Beauty by Anna Sewell – he really enjoyed this classic
  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by JK Rowling – having initially struggled with the style of this book, being a play rather than a story, he enjoyed it more by reading it himself rather than us sharing it as a story.
  • Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them by JK Rowling – a screenplay version which again he preferred to read alone. He did say that he enjoyed the film more.

    Hugo's Top 10 Books for a 10-year old
    Hugo’s Top 10 Books for a 10-year old

Toby is 8 years old, and is currently in Year 4 at school. His top 10 favourite books are:

  • Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl – Toby read this with his class in Year 3.
  • Danny The Champion Of The World by RoaldDahl – This is Toby’s current ‘tray book’ at school.
  • Fantastic Mr. Fox by Roald Dahl – out little Dahl fan likes this one best of all I think.
  • The Beast Quest series – Toby has drained the school library of all of the Beast Quest books, and I’ve had to buy him more! He absolutely devours them!
  • The Demon Dentist and Billionaire Boy by David Walliams – these are Toby’s favourite Walliams books, although I think he has read them all!
  • George’s Marvellous Medicine by Roald Dahl – This was another Year 3 Class book which Toby enjoyed.
  • The Diary of a Wimpy Kid series by Jeff Kinney – he has loved all of these.
  • Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by JK Rowling – this is the book his current Year 4 class are reading, and he has also enjoyed the illustrated version at home in our story time, as well as The Chamber of Secrets.
  • How To Speak Dragonese by Cressida Cowell – this is Toby’s favourite in the How To Train Your Dragon series.

    Toby's Top 10 Books for 8-Year Olds
    Toby’s Top 10 Books for 8-Year Olds

All-Time Favourites:

We couldn’t choose 10 each, as when the boys were younger they always had (and enjoyed) the same stories. So, we’ve gone for 15 in total:

  • You Choose by Nick Sharratt and Pippa Goodhart- not much reading in this book, but lots of interaction which they always loved.
  • Ginger by Charlotte Voake – this was the first book Hugo ever read by himself
  • Fantastic Mr. Fox – On Toby’s current list, but one of Hugo’s ‘when I was younger’ inclusions.
  • The Big Red Barn by Margaret Wise Brown – we knew this one off by heart from an early age!
  • The Richest Crocodile In The World by Daniel Postgate
  • Duck In The Truck by Jez Albrough
  • Farmer Ham by Alec Sillifant
  • Matilda by Roald Dahl
  • Hugo (The Invention of Hugo Cabret) by Brian Selznick – for obvious reasons.
  • The Magic Sky by Lucy Richards – an all time favourite!
  • The Owl Who Was Afraid Of The Dark by Jill Tomlinson
  • The Bear Under The Stairs by Helen Cooper
  • Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell
  • Tinga Tinga Tales – Why Elephant Has A Trunk
  • Who’s In The Loo (toilet humour never fails to amuse!) by Jeanne Willis and Adrian Reynolds
  • Animals In School by Julia Donaldson

    Some favourite books from when they were younger
    Some favourite books from when they were younger

What do you think of their list? Any they’ve missed out? I’m surprised ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’ and ‘Guess How Much I Love You’ don’t appear here, and they also missed out the great ‘Hairy McClairy’ books too, plus Mum’s favourites ‘Each Peach Pear Plum’, and ‘Tiddler’, and Dad’s favourites ‘The Night Pirates’ and ‘The Little Old Lady Who Cried Wolf’!

It’s interesting to see their personal preferences and styles appearing though as they get older, even if they have forgotten some of their old favourites already!

Would you like to pin this to help you remember our recommendations?

See our favourite books for 7-12 year olds, as chosen by my boys, plus some all-time favourites for younger children too. Become a bookworm at Family Makes!
Favourite books for 7-12 year olds – pin for later!


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Books Galore – My Sunday Photo

We’ve been having a massive book clear-out, and have a post coming soon about it!

In the meantime, we’ve shared some images on social media from a fantastic place we discovered a couple of weeks ago, Barter Books in Alnwick. It is inside an old railway station, and has toy trains going around on tracks above the book shelves, plus vintage seating, open fires, and a waiting room with tea and coffee.

We were there again on Friday, and will definitely be regular visitors now! We’ve even traded in some books of our own.

A section of Barter Books, my new favourite place!
A section of Barter Books, my new favourite place!
Hugo by one of the cosy fires, with his new books, at Barter Books in Alnwick
Hugo by one of the cosy fires, with his new books.

Wouldn’t you want to be a regular visitor to a bookshop this great?



Little Loves #3 – Musical


I’ve had a bit of a bleak week as I’ve been unwell, so nothing too exciting, but here’s what I’ve loved this week. Get your dancing shoes on. It’s quite a musical one….


Mr Stink book by David Walliams
Mr Stink book

Despite having a school book to read, and being in the middle of not one, but two Harry Potter books at the moment, my son decided we should also start reading Mr Stink by David Walliams. So that is what we’re reading this week. At least he’s reading, which has been a battle in the past week or two.



Severely in need of a laugh, I watched the James Corden Late Late Show special which was screened on Sky 1 in July (and which I recorded for my Hubby, who I knew would love it). Oh my, I just laughed and laughed and laughed! That clip where he joins a realtor to sell a multi-million dollar property, hahaha I was crying with laughter! Loving the car pool Karaoke too, especially the Adele one.


I love it when my little ones absent-mindedly sing around the house. Such a sign of happiness! There is a great music company who visit their school to run the music lessons, and they often introduce them to different genres and eras of music. My kids are so impressed when I recognise and join in with what they are singing. This week it was ‘Blame It On The Boogie’!


OK I made another crumble, but I don’t want to make you all too jealous…


This week I have mostly been wearing my pyjamas. Feels like an episode of Jesse’s Diets (The Fast Show, for those who remember!). Yes, I’ve been rather poorly so don’t expect any lipstick from me!


My big boy got chosen at school to learn to play the trombone! My mum is laughing at the noisy practice sessions I have ahead of me, but I couldn’t be more delighted. Music gave me so much joy at school and I’m really excited that he might have the same musical opportunities.

So, ladies and gentlemen, I give you for your delight and delectation, the magnificent trombone of Mr. Trombone Shorty!

Find #LittleLoves at Coffee, Work, Sleep, Repeat:Little Loves

The Reading Residence
What Katy Said

Little Loves #2 – Time

Hello! How are you?

Are you ready for my ‘Little Loves’ from this week?


Reading Doothy Koomson
When I Was Invisible

Following on from my last treat of reading a whole (grown up’s!) book, I managed to find time for another one! A brilliant one, too!

I loved the very sophisticated writing style. The subject matter, although perhaps a little disturbing, made for a very good read. Bravo to Dorothy Koomson for ‘When I Was Invisible’.


A Walk IN The Woods Film
A Walk In The Woods Movie

My Husband and I are big Bill Bryson fans. Huge in fact. I’d list ‘A Walk In The Woods’ as one of my all time favourite books, definitely my favourite Bryson for sure.

We were both excited, therefore, to watch the movie based on the book. We were also both rather disappointed, I’m afraid to say. The adaptation didn’t quite live up to our expectations. We didn’t warm to the characters, and found Nolte’s speech difficult to follow at times.

Still, we found time to spend a pleasant afternoon watching a movie together, while the kids were at school and hubby was off work, which is a rare thing! We also enjoyed the beautiful scenery of the movie at least.


Back to school means back to the 7am alarm, which for me means BBC Radio2 and the lovely Chris Evans waking me up every morning. Oh how I’ve missed the Ginger One gently bringing me to life each day (although another hour in bed would be nice, Chris!)


My youngest went blackberry picking with his Daddy this week, and I picked some apples from our tree in the garden. No prizes for guessing what I  made then – mmmmmmm!! The biggest, scrummiest crumble, which we’ve enjoyed with both custard and vanilla ice cream in various sittings this week.

Time for Apple and Blackberry Crumble
Apple and Blackberry Crumble


Finally, now that the weather is cooling slightly, the time is right to wear the new shoes I bought in the Next sale. Both pairs are so much nicer being worn in the knowledge that they were half price! #Loveabargain.


I’m starting to get the balance back in my life, and find a bit of my mojo again. I’ve always enjoyed crafting and comping, and I’m finally finding time to indulge in both.

Back to school has been bliss for me. My kids need structure and routine or everything just gets too crazy! I’ve also enjoyed the organisation that back to school brings, and that’s probably why I’m managing to fit in a few more of my favourite things!

Now, all I have to do is manage to throw in a few blog posts each week as well, and we’re sorted!!

Time to blog
Time to get my Blog On!

Find #LittleLoves at Coffee, Work, Sleep, Repeat:Little Loves


Petite PuddingThe Reading Residence