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Scottish author Catherine McPhail won the Kathleen Fidler Award for her first novel, Run Zan Ran, which she wrote after her daughter Katie was bullied at school. Catherine now loves writing for children.
Asked what she'd do if she wasn't a writer, she says: "If I wasn't paid to write, I'd still write books. What do I do in my spare time? I write. What is my hobby? Writing. I just love it. So, what would I be if I wasn't a writer? Bored stiff. "
Catherine is the author of the heart-stopping and highly original crime thrillers Nemesis Boys in particular will be drawn to the whole package – the dramatic cover look, the short time frame in which all four thrillers are set, the short, pacy chapters, the cliff hangers and the dynamic, independent, resourceful boy hero.
Nemesis is the junior Bourne Identity so parents who are fans of Robert Ludlum’s writing will appreciate just how good and suitable the Nemesis quartet is for their late tween and teen offspring.
A thrilling, fast-paced, high octane story that is brilliantly spun out by the queen of teen thrillers Cathy Macphail as she captures how Leo gets caught up in the terrifying gang warfare that rules his town in Scotland. Leo and his best friend Sean are cool streetwise boys; they love a thrill but they know how to keep themselves safe. But when Leo witnesses a cold bloodied murder he’s quickly swept out of his depth. Determined not to grass he finds himself trapped. Soon he is pulled deep into violence and danger knowing all the time that he must keep what he knows secret. So gripping and page-turning is the plot that even the most reluctant reader will feel compelled to read on and on.
A high speed, thriller which begins when Ram wakes on the top floor of a tower block. When the lift door opens he finds a man lying in a pool of blood. What is he trying to tell Ram? Ram has no memory of why he and the dead man might be connected. Determined to find out, he runs from the police and so begins a hectic chase that keeps you right on the edge of your seat as Ram tries to discover what it is he needs to know.
At last, Omar's family are safe and have somewhere to live. But life in a new country isn't easy and life on the estate is proving even harder thanks to Sam. Sam's always there - in Omar's tower block, in his class, and in his face. He wants to push Omar around, but Omar's not giving up on his new life and he's ready to push back. Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant or dyslexic readers aged 8+
It's Jack's first day at Glendale School. He's a star goalie, so why isn't he happy when he's asked to join the team? * Themes of family and friendship are explored in this exciting tale of school football. * Text type - A story with a familiar setting. * The storyboard on pp 22-23 offers children the opportunity to recap and retell the story in their own words.
The war is won but for Tony there is little to celebrate. His brother never returned from no man's land and has died not as a hero but executed as a coward. Refusing to believe that his brother was a traitor, a grief stricken Tony is pushed to the edge in his dark quest to uncover the horrifying truth. A thrilling narrative of intertwining perspectives, particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant or dyslexic readers aged 8+
Archie Eigg is never late, he's always on time - that's why his friends call him the egg-timer. But one morning, things start to go wrong - can he make it to school in time? Project X Origins is a ground-breaking guided reading programme for the whole school. Action-packed stories, fascinating non-fiction and comprehensive guided reading support meet the needs of children at every stage of their reading development. Each book contains inside cover notes that highlight challenge words, prompt questions and a range of follow-up activities to support children in their reading.
What transforms an ordinary Edinburgh boy into the most infamous split personality of all time? This vividly imagined diary of the young Henry Jekyll examines the contradictions within us all and teases out one possible backstory for the character in Robert Louis Stevenson's The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. A haunting and atmospheric imagining of a classic tale. Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant and dyslexic readers aged 9+
A poignant and moving story of one small family caught up in the consequences of World War One. Inspired by the true events of the UK's worst rail disaster. James, William and Belle are left all alone when their mother passes away. With their father fighting on the Front in the Great War, there's no one to look after them except the mean neighbour lady. But James hatches a plan to take his siblings away and find someone who might know where their father is. All they need is to get a train to the city - but can the children ever hope to reunite with their father? Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant and dyslexic readers aged 8+
A chillingly atmospheric story. Kamal loves his new country, his new city, his new school - it's a fresh start. The only problem is Alex, the school bully. He won't leave Kamal alone and it's starting to tarnish his shiny new life. But when Kamal makes a new friend who promises to help deal with Alex, things start to change. Who is Annie and what power does she have over Alex? Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant and dyslexic readers aged 8+
I blame everything that happened on my own good nature. I took her under my wing. She was plain and frumpy and I said to my friend Indira, Let's make Mimi our next project. Big mistake. Chantelle Morgan is the most popular girl in school. Well, at least she was until Mimi came along. When Chantelle and her best friend Indira take clumsy, clueless new girl Mimi under their wing, Mimi takes all of their advice. She wears her uniform like Chantelle's; she has her hair cut like Chantelle's; she even starts to talk like Chantelle. And at first Mimi seems so pleased, so grateful. Gradually, though, Chantelle begins to suspect she has created a monster... *Suitable for reading age 10 years. * Help Key Stage 3 students move from Level 4c to Level 4a in reading. *Support comprehension with the engaging, age-appropriate illustrations. *Encourage shared and guided reading using the ready-made tasks and discussion points on the activity pages at the back of the book. * Suitable for Key Stage 3 students with a reading age of 10 years and above.
Point Danger loomed above me. I tried not to think of all the stories: the ghostly sailors, the serial killer, the headless bodies. They didn't seem so funny now. I opened the door and went inside. It was as cold as the grave. The wind from the sea roared through the broken window. I could hear the tide rushing in... Mark is always in trouble. Now on a last warning, he's determined not to do anything wrong on the school trip (although, in his opinion, he is never the one at fault). When two bullies dare another boy to go inside a crumbling lighthouse, Mark can't stop himself from following. But can he keep them both out of danger, and himself out of trouble, when he gets inside? *Help Key Stage 3 students move from Level 3b to Level 3a in reading. *Support comprehension with the expressive, age-appropriate illustrations. *Encourage shared and guided reading using the ready-made tasks and discussion points on the activity pages at the back of the book.
Refreshed and repackaged edition of the hugely popular thriller from top author Cathy MacPhail.Nicola wants to scare the new girl, Destiny, so she and her gang stay overnight in the school. After all, Destiny doesn't realise that all the stories about the school being haunted are made up. Or are they? Terrifying chiller. With a reading age of 8, particularly suitable for reluctant, struggling and dyslexic readers.
A school trip goes disastrously wrong when a visit to local caves turns into something far more sinister. Five school children find themselves trapped beneath the ground. Their best chance of escape is to stay together. Then a member of the group disappears, and their hopes of leaving start to fade. Does one of the remaining four know more than they are letting on, or is there something evil lurking in the caves? The five children find themselves in a struggle for dominance as well as survival .
It was as I was walking into the drama class that I remembered the girl I had bumped into and the green sweater just like mine. That was what had got Mrs Watt mixed up. She had seen the girl in the green sweater and thought it was me. That was the simple explanation. Wasn't it? Fay can't help thinking it odd that people start remarking on conversations she knows she hasn't had, or saying they have seen her when she knows she was somewhere else. But then she starts hearing muffled footsteps behind her, the flash of fair hair just like hers around the corner. Is she imagining things? A gripping, spooky thriller from the acclaimed story-teller Cathy MacPhail.
Hannah Driscoll is part of a gang called the Lip Gloss Girls. The gang spends most of their spare time together - or baiting the rival gang the Hell Cats. The two gangs constantly square up to each other and vie for which gang can fight the best - whether it be at school, in the park or on the train. Hannah feels safe and comfortable within the gang - until she is accused of betraying the Lip Gloss Girls. All of a sudden Hannah feels what it is like to be cast out and surrounded by enemies ...
Maxine's parents have had to do perhaps the worst possible thing: confirm the identity of her brother Derek's body by the clothes he was wearing when he disappeared. So the brother who was missing is now officially dead. But then the worst possible thing really happens: Maxine receives a telephone call from somebody saying he is her brother. She can hardly believe her ears. Has Derek come back from the dead? In this pacy thriller the author manages to confront many issues including: how different people deal with grief/the very under-rated effect of severe bullying at school/sibling rivalry - all in a fast-paced compelling narrative voice.
Ivy turned on her. 'I told you I'd get you, didn't I? Well,' her next words sent shivers through Katie. 'Tonight's the night.' Katie is being bullied at school - and cannot get anyone to believe her. She feels frightened and alone. Until one day when she is cornered by Ivy and her fellow bullies on the town dump. Katie is terrified, there is nowhere left to run. But suddenly, as if by magic, a girl called Zan rises from the rubbish in the dump and leaps to Katie's defence. But Zan is not willing to talk to Katie - all she wishes to do is keep her identity a secret. Slowly Katies learns the truth about Zan, and when she does, she realises Zan has much more to lose than the safety of her cardboard box. A gripping story that really brings the issue of bullying to a head. This is Cathy MacPhail's first novel for children, which she wrote as a result of her own daughter being bullied at school.
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