SGS Library Blog – End of Summer term

SGS Library Blog – End of Summer term

SGS Library Blog – End of Summer term

SGS Library

Please click into the individual blog post, as the links are currently not visible on the library page, (formatting issue being investigated).

I hope everyone has a lovely summer holiday. I've put together a bumper edition of the blog full of ideas and resources for your summer reading. Next term the following clubs will be held in the library - book club, creative writing and podcasts. Book club will be after school on Wednesdays and we will confirm the timings for the other two after the summer break.

For the first half of this term we looked at the top SGS Library book borrows using the Reading Cloud 'reserve and collect' service. This half of the summer term it is the top borrowers on the Library Sora app who have been rewarded. Congratulations to the following students who have each been awarded an achievement point :-
Yr7 - Jayden, Agam and Rayyan
Yr8 - Vikesh and Vedant
Yr9 - Lavaan

New blog header

Through the holiday period, the SORA Student Reading App is always open!

For those of you who haven't logged into Sora yet, here is a reminder of how to borrow library ebooks via Sora. But if you are having any difficulties accessing Sora, then I will be happy to help you.

There is a link to the Sora app on the pupil page of the school website or at the top of the sidebar here on the library page.
Download the Sora app or explore in browser
Enter the setup code uksecondary if asked, select Sutton Grammar School and sign in with your school Google login and email password.
And in the meantime, here is a Getting Started video guide or there is a PDF version on the P drive in the P:\LIBRARY\Sora folder.

Book Spotlight!

Moondust by Gemma Fowler

Today marks the 52nd anniversary of the first day man walked on the moon, when Neil Armstrong famously said ”that's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind".  So I've decided to feature a moon-based fiction book, Moondust by Gemma Fowler as this week's book spotlight. You can read the first chapter here and there are plenty of resources on Gemma Fowler's website for both this. We have a copy of this book in the school library.

Lucy Strange books

Winners have been announced for the 2020 Young Quills for Historical Fiction awards. The winner of the age 14+ category is The Stolen Ones by Vanessa Curtis with The Fountains of Silence by Ruta Sepetys being highly commended. The winner of the age 10-13 category is Our Castle by the Sea by Lucy Strange with Diver’s Daughter – A Tudor Story by Patrice Lawrence being highly commended. All of these titles apart from The Stolen Ones are available to borrow online from Sora and of course we have a copy of The Fountains of Silence in the school library as it is one of the titles we were reading at book club for Carnegie Shadowing.

The Stolen Ones by Vanessa Curtis

2021 Branford Boase Award winner

More award news with Orphans of the Tide by Struan Murray winning the 2021 Branford Boase Award. This award is for new authors and you may watch the Awards ceremony on YouTube, which also features other shortlisted authors. This book is available to borrow online from LLC or you may read the first two chapters here.

2021 CLiPPA shortlist

Also the shortlist for the 2021 CLiPPA - CLPE Poetry Award was announced yesterday and it includes Run Rebel by Manjeet Mann, a great novel written in verse, which some of our book club students have read. This is another award which has a shadowing scheme so we will investigate the possibility of getting involved in 2022.

Edinburgh International Book Festival

The Edinburgh International Book Festival takes place from 14-30 August and all events will also be available to view online, either live or afterwards until 30 September. There are lots of great authors lined up and I'm going to highlight a few sessions.

Malorie Blackman: Noughts & Crosses, 20 Years On
Happy Here with Dean Atta, Patrice Lawrence & Yomi Sode
Liz Kessler & Alex Wheatle: Whose Side of History Are You On?
What's the T? with Juno Dawson & Special Guests

YA at home event

There are three YA author panel sessions taking place on 24 July which you may enjoy. More details of how to register here.

Toppsta reviews

I've been reminding you in each blog post that Toppsta are running a weekly book review competition throughout the summer with prizes for you, your class and the school. However it is limited to reviews of books featured in their pack (images above and below), so I have mentioned below those which are available in the school library or via Sora or LLC. Of course there may be other titles that you have already read, so do check out the full list. Final closing date is 27 August.

Skulduggery Pleasant by Derek Landy (SGS / Sora / LLC)
Malamander by Thomas Taylor (SGS / Sora / LLC)
Gargantis by Thomas Taylor (Sora / LLC)
The Danger Gang by Tom Fletcher (Sora / LLC)
After The War by Tom Palmer (Sora)
Future Friend by David Baddiel (LLC)

Toppsta reviews

Free Comic Book Day

Free Comic Book Day is usually held in May, but this year it will be on 14 August. Both Marvel and DC will be releasing a few free titles which you can get from participating stores including Forbidden Planet in Croydon. However no need to wait until then, as Comixology have lots of free comics available now.

On a similar topic, the National Literacy Trust have issued a challenge in conjunction with The Beano to make your own comic.

arvel's Captain America: The First 80 Years

Did you know that Captain America is 80 years old this year? He was created in March 1941 during World War II as a patriotic superhero to boost morale. Marvel's Captain America: The First 80 Years was published last month.

BookMatch Alex Rider by Anthony Horowitz

The Reader Teacher has created a set of #BookMatch lists by either book or author to help you find new reads based on your favourites which Yr7 may find helpful.

What I've been reading recently!

La Belle Sauvage by Philip Pullman

This week I borrowed the audio version of La Belle Sauvage, the first volume in Philip Pullman's The Book of Dust series from Sora.  Although published later, this is set prior to The Dark Materials when Lyra is a baby. It is a nice read but rather a slow start in my opinion. I have also read The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey, a brilliant thrilling sci-fi adventure and Skellig by David Almond, an empathetic read which was the winner of the Carnegie Medal back in 1998. All these titles are available to borrow from the school library or online via LLC. And La Belle Sauvage is also on Sora.

My next audiobook from Sora will be Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz. What have you read recently? How about posting a review of your latest book on Reading Cloud.


Bumper News Round Up this week!

The Week Junior magazine have a summer reading challenge to make reading your superpower. Read and review any three books, Open to those aged upto 16. Closes 3 Sep.

Penguin Lit in Colour are running their Creative Student Prize asking the question: what place do books have in your world? Entries can be submitted in a variety of written or visual formats. Open to those aged 14-18. Closes 17 September.

The UK's YA Lit Con will be taking place from 6-8 August as part of the London Film & Comic Con. Keep an eye out as the programme isn't up on their website yet.

I featured You Are A Champion: How to Be the Best You Can Be by Marcus Rashford as the book spotlight on the blog previously and here is your chance to win a copy. We also have this title in the school library. Closes 4 August.

Not long now until the Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award 2021 closes at the end of this month.

Here is an opportunity to obtain a free copy of Skin Taker by Michelle Paver to read and review. Closes 30 July.

ReadingZone have a selection of teen book giveaways. Closes 31 July.

Following on from our Big Bang Fair, you may enjoy trying some of the activities from the Digital Discover Zone of the Cheltenham Science Festival. How about the Agent Y Code Book Challenge?

Goldsmiths are running three Young Writer Competitions for short stories, journalism and anthropology. Open to those aged 16-18. Closing date 1 August.

One of our newest additions to the school library is Derek Landy's latest book The Skulduggery Pleasant Grimoire, a compendium recapping on the books so far, plus a reference guide to characters and a treasure-trove of bonus content. And you may listen to Derek Landy reading the introduction here.

Caboodle have a giveaway for an advance copy of action-adventure book Swarm Rising by Tim Peake and Steve Cole before it is published at the end of September, plus you can read the first chapter here. 100 winners. Closes 5 August.

Teachers here is one for you if you would like to participate in the 2021 Teachers’ Reading Challenge.


If you are successful in any of the challenges or competitions we mention on the blog, then please email us to let us know.


 With the Olympics starting later this week and all the recent action of Euro 2020 and at Wimbledon where some of you were ball boys, I have created a crossword featuring sport related fiction. All titles can be found either in the school library or online via Sora or LLC.

crossword featuring sport related fiction

Crossword created at

Here is the solution to the STEM fiction crossword. This will remain online until the start of next term.

solution to the STEM fiction crossword.