Media and Review
Six Summer Scorchers: Books for the Summer
Feeling bored over the long six-week holiday? Need something to do when you’re by the pool? Why not dive into one of these good reads, all recommended by journalists at The Torch?
Five Children on the Western Front by Kate Saunders
Reviewed by Ellisia Bowman, Year 8
Five Children on the Western Front is a modern continuation of E. Nesbit’s iconic Five Children book series. This update is written by Kate Saunders.
The book is about five children and the two youngest find a grumpy sand fairy. The other three children remember the old days when they went on adventures. Once the eldest got sent off to war and the other two eldest were sent to school where’d they have to stay, the two youngest start to find the sand fairy’s way back home.
This book blends fairytale with adventure to create an intriguing mystery, perfect for the adventurous kind of reader.
Charlotte Says by Alex Bell
Reviewed by Alexandra Cook, Year 7
Recently, I have read a book called Charlotte Says. It is about a girl called Jemima who had recently escaped Whiteladies (amanor) and started a new life at an all-girls’ boarding school. Weird things begin to happen once a box of dolls are delivered to her after surviving the accident at the manor. The girls start getting suspicious of their new house lady and Jemima has to go to extremes to survive the time at the school. Will she fight or flight?
I enjoyed this, as it is a spine-chilling book. I, for one, love it and I would recommend it to anyone who likes mild horror.
Divergent by Veronica Roth
Reviewed by Grace Clowrey, Year 8
In a dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five ‘factions’, where each values a certain trait: Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). Like all 16-year-olds, Beatrice Prior must choose which faction she wants to stay in for the rest of her life – meaning she has to figure out who she really is – even if it means leaving her family behind. As she struggles to live with the choices she has made, Beatrice must determine who her friends really are – and her enemies. For she has a secret that could help save – or destroy – her.
Discworld by Terry Pratchett
Reviewed by Isobelle Fenton, Year 7
Terry Pratchett was a genius when writing books. He could handle writing children’s books, and making them interesting, in the same way that he made his adult books, the Discworld series, interesting.
The Discworld can be confusing, if not read properly. The concept itself mimics the thoughts of ‘Flat Earthers’ by saying that the world is a disc shape, balanced on four elephants that stand on the back of the turtle Great A’Tuin. The books are the best I've ever read, because of the way Terry Pratchett wrote them. They are a perfect blend of fantasy and Terry Pratchett’s unique humour.
I recommend you read them yourselves, as I can’t really explain how good they are in words. The first of the series is The Colour Of Magic and there are forty in total to get stuck into!
Slay by Kim Curran
Reviewed by Grace Clowrey, Year 8
Meet Slay – playing killer gigs, and slaying killer demons.
Milly is the daughter of a famous opera singer. When she arrives home, she discovers that her mother has been taken over by something evil – but the last people she expects to save her are the hottest boy band on the planet! Soon, she is racing across the world with Slay, a ‘killer’ boy band, JD, Tom, Connor, Zek and Niv, trying to stop the demons who took her mum – before they end civilisation forever.
This book is very exciting with lots of plot twists and turns, and I highly recommend it. There is also a sequel – Slay On Tour, which is now available.
Feminists Don’t Wear Pink and Other Lies, curated by Scarlett Curtis
Reviewed y Emily Rodgers, Year 7
This book is one of a kind, as I have never read or seen anything else like it. It focuses on topics of women’s rights and is crammed full of short stories, anecdotes and poetry from famous female celebrities. It was all compiled by the organization ‘Girl Up’ and contains work from Emma Watson (famous for playing Hermione Granger and Belle in the new Beauty and the Beast film), Jodie Whittiker (famous as the first female Doctor for the BBC series Doctor Who) amongst others.
It is also different from other books as 10% of all profits go to the charity ‘Girl Up’, which is helping to educate the world about the all-important topic of feminism. Every story is funny, personal and relatable to all women.
This book is very necessary in order to empower young women who might be afraid of the word ‘feminism’. Many girls feel like it is too big of a label to fill, as people constantly ask questions and don’t quite understand the outcomes we want feminism to bring to the world—people often assume that feminists want men to be worse off than women, when really, this isn’t true. Feminism is about striving to have equal rights for everyone in the world, which will benefit men as well as women.