Friday, 7 September 2018


I've spent the first half of this week here on Reading with Jade sharing all about my reading throughout the summer, so to conclude the week I thought I'd talk a little about some of the bookish things enjoyed by Alexander over the summer months.

Something I was keen to do this summer holidays with Alexander was take part in the library summer reading challenge again; this was Alexander's third year. The library challenge - which runs throughout the whole of the UK - sets the goal of reading six books during the school holidays (which are usually six weeks long). There is a theme each year, with a fun way in which to chart your progress as well as little knick knacks being given as rewards for each book read (think small, like a bookmark or colour sheet set to the theme). Upon completion of the six books, a certificate and medal is rewarded to the child. 

Alexander is such a little bookworm currently, and we could have easily whizzed through the titles, but the way in which we completed it was by picking his favourite book from each week and counting that as one book - however our library visits were fortnightly, as we now live a fair distance from the library.

I hope taking part in the summer reading challenge will be a tradition that stays in our household throughout Alexander's childhood. 

(Also, there should totally be an adult reading challenge - just saying!)

We've been continuing the small transition from picture books to more shorter chapter books, which we started doing in early spring. This summer Alexander showed an interest in the collection of Roald Dahl books I have on my own shelves - I think largely because of their bright & beautiful colours - and asked to read the BFG. We started The BFG around mid summer, and he has been really enjoying it. We haven't yet finished it, as I let him lead his reading as opposed to telling him what we can/should read, with our bookmark still sitting half way through it. He did also express an interest in another Dahl title, which is much shorter and that we sat and read through in the one sitting: The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me. Giraffes are Alexander's favourite animal, and he loves books about animals, so I'm not surprised he wanted to read this book.

Although slowly graduating from picture books, we are of course still very much enjoying them, with a good few new to us discoveries this summer - Alexander has even proclaimed of one of them being a new favourite book!

The Giant Jumperee by Julia Donaldson
Rabbit arrives home one day to hear a loud voice coming from inside his burrow: 'I'm the Giant Jumperee and I'm scary as can be!' shouts the stranger. Rabbit's friends Cat, Bear, and Elephant come to help but they're no match for the mysterious, booming voice. But who is the Giant Jumperee?

We were recommended this picture book by a fellow blogger (Christine), and finally tracked down a copy within our library system. Alexander has experienced many Julia Donaldson books - from his shelves, library borrows and nursery reads - and this title was as well received as all the others; Alexander thought it was a funny read also. Thanks for the recommendation, Christine.

The Shark in the Dark by Pete Bently
The shark in the dark is big, mean and greedy and he enjoys tormenting all the little fishes in the depths of the ocean. Until one day, a squid comes up with a cunning plan to unite the fish and teach the shark a lesson he'll remember forever.

The rhyming and flow of this story really captivates Alexander; he loves animals, ocean life etc, so the characters are interesting to him also. The Shark in the Dark is Alexander's new favourite book. 

From a magical wish-granting cloak to a hammock rocked by jungle animal friends, there's nothing that a patch of night time sky can't become with a bit of imagination, and certainly no need to be afraid of the dark.

A Patch of Black is a beautiful bedtime story that will sooth a little one to sleep. The illustrations are just stunning, as is the story itself. Alexander has wanted to read this book more times than I can recount - day or night!
It has been a great summer of reading.


  1. YAY for Giant Jumperee! I’m glad you both liked it — or I’d have felt quite silly :) :)

    1. Haha - Alexander thought it was very funny, and enjoyed the mixture of animals!

  2. I’m glad that Alexander is enjoying his reading! I loved Roald Dahl when I was a kid.

    Aj @ Read All The Things!

    1. Ah, thank you! I'm loving sharing a favourite author of mine with him.

  3. Summer reading programs are so great!
    My son loved Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and James and the Giant Peach, but I don't think we ever read The Giraffe. I will have to pick it up from the library for my daughter!

    1. Right?! I think often times the parent is a little more invested than the child though. Haha!

      I'm looking forward to sharing more of the classic Dahl books with my son.


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