the beautiful day of missed literary opportunities passes us again…if we were in charge of the world, these are some of the books we would have recommended.
Kipper: replaced by Animal Boogie by Debbie Harter. It comes with a CD that plays an incredibly annoying song that is sure to delight children, it continues Kipper’s theme about making friends, and it has a great array of culturally diverse characters.
Supertato: replaced by How the Library (Not the Prince) Saved Rapunzel by Wendy Meddour. Like Supertato, it is about books and the importance of words. It is also sweetly feminist and will appeal to little girls because, Rapunzel, duh.
Daisy and the Trouble with Jack: replaced by Rules by Cynthia Lord. This takes many of the themes of Daisy, such as making friends, and the relationship between genders. However, this adds another facet to these themes, as there is the depiction of multiple characters with autism.
The Great Mouse Plot: replaced by…The Great Mouse Plot by Roald Dahl. I’m not about to replace Roald Dahl.
The World of Norm: replaced by Justin Case: School, Drool, and other Daily Disasters by Rachel Vail. I chose this mostly because it was written in the same style as Norm, and others like Diary of a Wimpy Kid, and focuses on many of the same issues. However, the main character deals with anxiety, and in a more sensitive way than other book series.
Star Wars: Adventures in Wild Space: replaced by Astronaut Academy: Zero Gravity by Dave Roman. This is a graphic novel, which I thought would be a good option for less confident readers within this age group. Obviously it is still science-fiction, but it also has the benefit of an Asian protagonist and is extremely funny.
Harper and the Sea of Secrets: replaced by The Book that Proves Time Travel Happens by Henry Clark. This is still a fantasy novel, as the main characters all have magic abilities, and there is a magical instrument. It also continues the themes of friendship and working together. This also has great diversity, as two of the protagonists are mixed-race, and the third is Romany.
The Boy Who Could Do What He Liked: replaced by The Boy in the Dress by David Walliams. I didn’t think there was much in The Boy Who Could Do What He Liked that wasn’t already covered in the other books. Therefore I went out on a whim and chose a book about gender identity and cross-dressing, which still keeps the humour of popular middle-school fiction.
Spot the Difference: replaced by None of the Above by I.W. Gregorio. I’ve again attempted to keep the same themes: in this case, trying to fit in. However, None of the Above takes this theme much further, as the main character discovers that she is intersex, and what this actually means in terms of gender identity.
Kindred Spirits: replaced by Love Letters to the Dead by Ava Dellaria. Although not quite as nerdy as Kindred Spirits, there is still an element of the fan as the protagonist writes to a variety of dead celebrities whom she admires. It deals well with themes of divorce, depression, and the grieving process, and has mild LGBT undertones.
these are just a few that we thought of! there are thousands of wonderful children’s books that are funny, fantastical, and put in that extra effort to be inclusive. if you have any recommendations, let us know!
happy world book day x