Our favourite books of 2015

posted in: Playing by the book | 8

What to say? I’ve been very fortunate this year, having read so many wonderful books, and because I like a challenge, I decided to try and pick the books which made my year. This is a very personal selection, based on books that really meant something to me, that softened my heart or emboldened my spirit.

I didn’t manage to review them all on the blog but where I did do so, I’ve linked to the original posts below. Please do explore all you can of these books – I’m sure you and your kids will find something you too really love amongst them!


Evil Emperor Penguin: Book 1 by Laura Ellen Anderson
The Oxford Companion to Children’s Literature by Daniel Hahn
The Lion and the Bird by Marianne Dubuc
Bronze and Sunflower by Cao Wenxuan and Meilo So
Would You Rather…Dine with a Dung Beetle or Lunch with a Maggot? by Camilla de le Bédoyère and Mel Howells
The Tender Moments of Saffron Silk (and all the Kingdom of Silk books) by Glenda Millard and Stephen Michael King
Railhead by Philip Reeve
The Little Bookshop and the Origami Army! by Michael Foreman
The Duck and the Darklings by Glenda Millard and Stephen Michael King
The Unlikely Adventures of Mable Jones by Will Mabbitt
Cruelty Bites by Ellen Duthie and Daniela Martagón
When Dad Showed Me the Universe by Ulf Stark and Eva Eriksson
Unbecoming by Jenny Downham
Space Dog by Mini Grey
How the Sun Got to Coco’s House by Bob Graham
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by JK Rowling and Jim Kay
Peekaboo by Giuliano Ferri

I also asked my kids for their favourite new reads of 2015. They chose several of mine and also a few others:


Lockwood & Co: The Hollow Boy by Jonathan Stroud
Arsenic For Tea: A Murder Most Unladylike Mystery
First Class Murder: A Murder Most Unladylike Mystery
Samen ben je niet alleen (Lotte en Roos) by Marieke Smithuis with illustrations by Annet Schaap
The Blood of Olympus (Heroes of Olympus Book 5) by Rick Riordan
The Secret Rescuers: The Sky Unicorn by Paula Harrison
Tom Gates 9: Top of the Class (Nearly)by Liz Pichon
Yes! No (Maybe…) by Liz Pichon
An Island of Our Own by Sally Nicholls
Space Hostages by Sophia McDougall
Kristy’s Great Idea: Full-Color Edition (the Baby-Sitters Club Graphix #1) by Ann M. Martin and Raina Telgemeier
The Pirates of Pangaea: Book 1 (The Phoenix Presents) by Dan Hartwell and Neill Cameron
The Dream Snatcher by Abi Elphinstone
The Last of the Sandwalkers by Jay Hosler
That’s My Hat by Anouck Boisrobert and Louis Rigaud
Pierre the Maze Detective: The Search for the Stolen Maze Stone by Hiro Kamigaki and IC4DESIGN

Of all the brilliant books published this year, which have been your (kids’) very favourite?

8 Responses

  1. Catherine

    This is a great list Zoe and there are lots of books on it that we would like to read too 🙂 Some of our favourites this year in no particular order have been;

    Harper and the Scarlet Umbrella by Cerrie Burnell and Laura Ellen Anderson
    Robin’s Winter Song by Suzanne Barton
    Pirates Don’t Drive Diggers by Alex English & Duncan Beedie
    The Storm Dragon by Paula Harrison
    The Princess and the Giant by Caryl Hart and Sarah Warburton
    Catherine recently posted..Dec 3rd: Abie Longstaff chooses How The Grinch Stole Christmas!

    • Zoe

      So pleased to read your selection Catherine. I don’t know Pirates Don’t Drive Diggers so will look that one out. The cover of Harper and the Scarlet Umbrella is one of my favourite covers of the year – just so eyecatching and tempting!
      Zoe recently posted..Our favourite books of 2015

  2. Pippa Goodhart

    What a wonderful MIX of books! Especially good to see top class comic books alongside ‘literary’ novels and ‘simple’ picture books. I wonder how many books in all you looked at before selecting those?

    • Zoe

      Ah Pippa, every year I try to keep track of everything we read, and every year I fail. So I’ve no idea how much we’ve read in total this year. Of course we’ve read lots of stuff which wasn’t published this year, and for our selections today we kept it only to stuff published (or made available in the UK) in 2015. What would make it on to your best books of the year list?
      Zoe recently posted..Our favourite books of 2015

  3. Jayne

    Great list will be searching some of those out! As promised here are my 6 favourite reads this year.
    Still Falling Sheena Wilkinson
    My name isn’t Friday by Jon Walters
    The Clockwork Sparrow by Katherine Woodvine
    Demolition Dad by Phil Earle
    The Everest Files by Matt Dickinson
    Princess Caraboo by Catherine Johnson
    So many more I have loved

    • Zoe

      Thanks Jayne, I too enjoyed My Name isn’t Friday a lot – very cleverly written I thought. Pricess Caraboo has been on my TBR pile too long. I will redouble my efforts to read it over the holidays!
      Zoe recently posted..Our favourite books of 2015

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