SGS Library blog - November 2022

SGS Library blog - November 2022

November is always full of excitement from dazzling firework displays to Christmas decorations appearing in the highstreets.  We have our Library Christmas tree back again this year and we are asking Year 7 to help us decorate it with their ‘favourite book’ suggestions. Also, don’t forget to read about our famous Christmas book cover competition full details for both are further down the blog.    

Check out these new books currently ready and waiting for you: The Fall by Robert Muchamore; The Blue Book of Nebo by Manon Steffan Ros and the November tradition of the library year… Guinness World Records 2023.

These great titles are sure to get your knowledge flowing: The Long Shot by Kate Bingham; Muddling Through by Duncan Weldon and Noor-un-Nissa Inayat Khan by Sufiya Ahmed.


Remembrance Day 2022

On 13th November Remembrance Sunday was observed.  It is a day we honour the service and sacrifice of Armed Forces.  Many people wear the tradition of a red poppy as a symbol of remembrance and repsect. Remembrance Sunday is closely linked with Armistice Day on the 11th November which recognises the end of the First World War hostilities on the 11th hour, of the 11th day, of the 11th Month of 1918.  In school we came together for a minute silence to mark Armistice Day.  The library displayed a selection of themed books available on Sora, in addition to the many we have on our shelves. 

These titles are highly recommended for KS3/4: The Beekeeper of Aleppo by Christy Lefteri; Hitler’s Angel by William Osborne; Goodnight Mister Tom by Michelle Magorian.

For KS5 we have selected these books as good ones to read and broaden your knowledge: Double Cross by Ben Macintyre; Unwinnable by Theo Farrell and Chocolate cake with Hitler by Emma Craigie.

If you would like to learn more about remembering our military and civilians including the 40th anniversary of the Falklands Conflict click this link: www.what-were-remembering-this-year


World Cup Fever

The World Cup 2022 is taking place in Qatar where 32 of the top football teams represent their countries to become world champions.  This international football event takes place every 4 years since 1930 except in 1942 – 1946 due to the WWII.  The World Cup is known to be the most prestigious football tournament and is watched by fifty percent of the world’s population.

We have real ‘class act’ reads that you’ll definitely want to ‘dive’ into! You are a Champion by Marcus Rashford; Over the Line by Tom Palmer and Booked by Kwame Alexander.


New Graphic Novels

Comic Club have been busy thinking of new books they would like to read and have come up with some super graphic novels.  They have now arrived and are ready for everyone to delve into, here are a few of them: Monster by Walter Dean Myers; Naruto by Masashi Kishimoto and The Crossroads at Midnight by Abby Howard.

Looking for new graphic novel material?

If you love graphic novels and comics and fancy exploring some new material, why not start with some Indigenous Graphic Novels, click on the link below for a great list of books.


Bookmarked YA Book Podcast

Check out these podcasts from the writers of designed for young adults to hear about news and latest discussions on books and authors:


Mr Marshall Reviews
“Alexander the Great” by Dominic Sandbrook

History is many things, but at heart it really engages as a vivid retelling of our past, and no-one does this better than the historian Dominic Sandbrook in his new series for children and Young Adults (and, I have to say, older ones too), “Adventures in Time”.   Well told history should seize you by the gut and keep pulling until it lets you go, exhausted, exhilarated and informed, at the other end.  I think Sandbrook achieves this in all of his new series, but I particularly enjoyed his “Alexander the Great”.

Alexander is one of the few extraordinary figures whose name echoes down millennia as a familiar one to successive generations.  Sandbrook shows us why.  There is no adventure story quite like Alexander’s.  Born into the stormy marriage of an ambitious king of Macedonia and his vivacious, strong-willed wife (who, amongst other things, slept with her pet snakes), the young Alexander quickly made his mark.  He was tutored by Aristotle, and as a boy he managed to tame the immense, wild horse Bucephalus – a feat even his legendary father hadn’t managed.  As a young man, he rode Bucephalus across continents, conquering all before him.  King at just 20 years old, by the age of 30 Alexander had created the largest empire in history.  He did it through daring, verve and tireless commitment.  He fought unequal battles and won them, lead from the front (endangering his own life on more than one occasion), embarked on desperate marches across desert land and mountains, defeated elephants and gained ever more kingdoms.  He married three wives for largely political reasons, but his strongest and closest friendship was with his boyhood companion Hephaistion.  When he died at age 32, Alexander was overwhelmed with grief and spent his own remaining months planning all sorts of monuments for his lost friend.

For a brief moment at the end of his life Alexander controlled an empire stretching from his native Macedonia in Greece, to the northwest of India.   He was defeated not by enemies but by his own, exhausted soldiers who eventually begged him to turn back home.  Alexander retreated no further than Babylon, engaged in being an eastern potentate and died a mere eight months after Hephaistion, aged 32.  He had been king for just 12 years yet left an indelible mark on history.  He is the epitome of eternal, vigorous, successful youth.  Even action film villains cite his achievements, as Alan Rickman’s heist mastermind Hans Gruber did  in “Die Hard” (possibly the best Christmas film ever) when he remarks – “When Alexander saw the breadth of his domain he wept, for there were no more worlds to conquer”.

Fiction cannot match the short life and adventures of Alexander the Great.  In Dominic Sandbrook’s expert hands, the great, conquering hero of Macedonia lives through vivid, page-turning prose that catches us better than any novel.

In addition to Alexander The Great by Dominic Sandbrook, we have two more books to add to the Adventures in Time Series: The Six Wives of Henry VIII; Fury of the Vikings and The Second World War AdventuresAvailable for you to borrow from our school library now and impress Mr Marshall!

For more books, podcasts and information on this author visit:


Watership Down Turns 50

This month celebrates Richard Adam's classic novel 'Watership Down' turning 50 years old.  Originally the story was born out of Adam's imagination to entertain his children on boring car journeys about talking rabbits, Fiver, Hazel and Bigwig as they flee the destruction of their natural habitat to establish a new place to settle - the hill of Watership Down.​  Laterally his two daughters who were captivated by the stories and begged their father to write a book which has since sold 50 million copies​.

Watership Down remains a truly ground breaking novel with thought provoking political, social and spiritual messages.  It is available in our library and on SORA.

If you would like to explore more YA classic novels check out this list: .

Our library recommendations are: To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee (KS3); The Catcher in the Rye (KS4) and The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald (KS5).

Non-Fiction Month 2022

National Non-fiction November is founded by the Federation of Children's Book Groups with this year’s theme being ‘Communication.’
To learn more click the link below

In addition there is a great competition for year 7 to write an “Interview with…” details of how to enter are below, the deadline is 5th December

This month is a great time to pick up a non-fiction book and we have plenty in our school library.  

Our Library non-fiction picks are:

Touching the Void by Joe Simpson; Kays Anatomy by Adam Kay; The Almighty Dollar by David Dharshini; Prisoners of Geography, Our World Explained by Tim Marshall.

Don't forget to check out communication themed lists, simply look out for the relevant key stages which are clearly highlighted


Revision Guides

It’s a busy time in school for our Year 11 and Sixth Form students as they navigate their way around study and exams. 

We have many book resources to help, if your exam journey has started and you would like some study guides please come into the library so we can direct you to our selection. 

Here are a few of the many we have available: The Art of Poetry volume 7, AQA Love and Relationships; The Art of Drama Vol 5, Romeo and Juliet; Collins Snap Revision for AQA English Literature and English Language.


Available on SORA

Check out what is trending on SORA, our whole school has free access to this online ebook resource by downloading the SORA app:, then use the setup code: uksecondary and select SGS, sign in using your school and email password.

We currently are really liking the GCSE study guides, World Cup books and the SORA 2023 award winners & nominees, so login and start exploring.


“Favourite book” Christmas Tree 2022

Our Year 7 "Favourite Book" library Christmas tree will be up and ready from 30th November 2022 we would like you to fill our tree with your favourite book titles!

Simply grab a decoration from your Yr 7 form tutor, write on it your favourite book title and the author who wrote it, bring your decoration into the library and receive a chocolate or bookmark!  Let’s fill our Christmas tree with book suggestions and cheer!

Christmas Book Cover Competition

The annual Library Christmas Quiz takes place in the last two weeks of term. Students are asked to identify book titles and authors from picture clues. All correct entries are put into a hat and three prize winners drawn on the last morning break of term. There is also an edible prize for the the Form submitting the highest number of correct entries. Only one entry per person allowed. Rivalry between the year7 form tutors can be fierce as the competition hots up in the last week of term!