SGS Library Blog – Spring term week 12

SGS Library Blog – Spring term week 12

SGS Library Blog – Spring term week 12

SGS Library

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

As we reach the end of the Spring term, may I wish everyone a restful break over the Easter holiday. Did anyone play any practical jokes this morning for April Fool's Day? There are a variety of different customs across other countries. In my own school-days, I was on a French exchange one year and we spent the previous evening drawing, colouring and cutting out paper fish, to try and stick on the back of other children in the playground at school the next day, calling them Poisson d'Avril if we succeeded without them noticing.

The book publisher Farshore played a great April Fool today by announcing that they would be dropping all punctuation from their books, with Matt Lucas revealing at noon that it was all a hoax. His new title My Very Very Very Very Very Very Very Silly Book of Pranks was published today.

There are a number of books with the title April Fool’s Day, so I thought I would highlight the one written by Josip Novakovich, an author who was shortlisted for The Man Booker International Prize in 2013. This book may appeal to Upper School students. Coincidentally, the longlist has just been announced for this award earlier this week.

April Fool’s Day by Josip Novakovich

You will also have received a copy of the Easter reading list – a selection of easy, medium, hard and non-fiction reads with some connection to the Easter theme, be it chocolate or rabbits.

You may see a preview on Amazon of a few of the recipes in The Cadbury Mini Eggs Cookbook. The Mini Egg Rocky Road recipe is certainly making me feel hungry. If you do any Easter cooking, we would love to see the photos.

Mini Eggs Cookbook

We found a fun creative Easter competition which you may enjoy to decorate a book themed egg.

book egg competition

Once again may we please remind you to return books to the Library lobby as soon as possible. All books borrowed last term are overdue. We are still waiting for almost 250 books to be returned, mainly from Upper School, so we have only launched the 'Click and Collect' service to Lower School so far, until we get more of the outstanding stock returned. However in the meantime Upper School are also welcome to take a look at our new library catalogue, although you won't be able to reserve a book until you receive your login details. Key in SUT, to search for our school. Sora will continue to be available in parallel for those of you who prefer ebooks or audiobooks.

Dead or Alive by Derek Landy

Book Spotlight!

This week's Book Spotlight features the latest title Dead or Alive in the Skulduggery Pleasant series by Derek Landy, which is newly published today. This is book 14 in the series and is the penultimate title. Some of you may have got the Skulduggery Pleasant Apocalypse Kings title as your free book for World Book Day.

There are lots of resources on the Skulduggery Pleasant website plus another book is due out in May. This is The Skulduggery Pleasant Grimoire which is a compendium recapping on the books so far, plus a reference guide to characters and a treasure-trove of bonus content.

You may enjoy taking the Skulduggery Pleasant quiz to see which character you are. And the World Book Day competition is still ongoing.

Derek Landy featured in the World Book Day masterclass academy. So how about writing a character recipe, reading an extract from Apocalypse Kings (if you haven't got the book) and watching the video where Derek Landy discusses how to make characters feel real.

World Autism Awareness Week

This week is World Autism Awareness Week and you may enjoy trying Anne Hegerty's Spectrum Quiz. There is also an Autism Awareness Quiz, but it shows the answers alongside the questions. There are plenty of books which raise awareness so I thought I would share a booklist from LoveReading which either include a character with autism or support young people with autism. You will need to page down to see age appropriate books and you will find some titles that I have featured in previous blog posts like Diary of a Young Naturalist by Dara McAnulty and A Kind of Spark by Elle McNicoll.

Today I am going to highlight The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon which is a murder mystery where the protagonist, Christopher is a boy with Asperger's syndrome. Christopher does not like strangers or the colours yellow or brown or being touched. However he knows all the countries in the world and their capital cities and every prime number up to 7507. We have a copy of this book in the school library and it is also available to borrow online via Sora.

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon

During the Easter holiday on April 7, it will be World Health Day. This year's theme is Building a fairer, healthier world. I don't have the power to influence that but I can help to point out some wellbeing resources.

There are a selection of wellbeing podcasts here which you may enjoy listening to. And some titles you may like to read. They also have a quiz aimed at getting to know your mindset and how to look after your mental wellbeing.


Mr Shergold has had a dark fairy tale Mr Andersen Will See You Now published in The Cabinet of Heed Literary Journal. Warning it does contain bad language. His story is very topical as tomorrow is the anniversary of Hans Christian Andersen's birth.

We have a collection of Hans Christian Andersen's tales in the school library and this is also available to borrow online from Sora.

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

What I'm reading listening to this week!

I borrowed the audio version of Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs from Sora. We also have a copy of this book in the school library. This is the first title in the Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children series and a best-selling book which has also been filmed. It is a thrilling time-travel fantasy horror story which I highly recommend. What have you read recently?


We now have copies of all the books shortlisted for the 2021 CILIP Carnegie Medal in the school library. And we have registered for the shadowing scheme where young people get the chance to read and vote on their choice for the winning book. We are hoping to get this up and running next term, so please email us if you would be interested in being involved. You may read as few or many of the titles as you wish.

Also you have a chance to win a set of the 2021 Carnegie shortlisted titles by taking a photograph of your bookshelf.

2021 Carnegie shortlisted titles

Now for a quick round-up of a few other ideas, resources and articles.

Lots of fun resources on Birmingham Museums website for the Easter holiday.

The Litmus Creative Writing Project 2021, organised by Trinity College Cambridge is open to students in years 9-11. This year's theme is The Green Light.

You may like to read a free edition of Aquila. This is a magazine aimed at those aged upto 13 covering science, history and general knowledge. The website also includes free resources to accompany all back editions.

Are you interested in a taste of journalism? Then take a look at the BBC Young Reporter competition.

There is a fun competition here to count the number of Easter eggs you can find in the picture.

Here is a giveaway to win a tablet and books for you, plus a further £200 of books for the school.

Jellybooks have made available a selection of free Easter reads over the Bank Holiday weekend only until 9am Tuesday 6 April. You should find the Discover The Natural World topic most age appropriate.

The Neuroscience of Communication Development lab at Royal Holloway have an opportunity for you to take part in a word study including games, with an Amazon voucher for all participants as a thank you. Open to those upto age 16.

GCHQ have set The Turing Challenge. This is a tough series of puzzles to celebrate Alan Turing featuring on the new £50 banknote, which will come into circulation in June.

The WRD About Books magazine have a free sample edition here. Plus they also have a downloadable activity pack, which I have saved a copy of on the P drive in the P:\LIBRARY\magazines and newspapers folder. The WRD magazine is for thoses aged upto 14.

Cumbria Libraries are hosting a series of free online events during the Easter holiday including climate change, poetry, cartoons and a session with Dan Freedman, author of the Jamie Johnson football books.


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. 


Don't forget that we will happily accept all book-related contributions from students and staff to our blog. And please email us your suggestions for what you would like to see on our blog, or if you wish to be involved with a podcast book chat or one of our Reading Groups. In particular, as regards the podcasts, we would love to hear if you have any ideas or editorial experience you wish to tell us about.

Finally I've created you a fun Easter wordsearch. You may not all have heard of the final clue to search for. A Simnel cake, traditionally eaten at Easter, is a fruit cake with a layer of marzipan inside, decorated with 11 marzipan balls. The balls represent the disciples excluding Judas Iscariot.

Easter wordsearch

Crossword created at