Engaging reads for children, from Books go Walkabout

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Earthquake in Nepal

Image 3Bhim, the trekking guide,and his family and niece, Kalpana are alive.

House destroyed and living outside in a makeshift tent with tremors still continuing. No help reached them yet!
Donations please via the main appeal charities.

School Librarian of the Year

Image 1This year two librarians have been awarded the School Librarian of the Year, a celebration at the Hotel Russell in London, on 7th October.

Ginette Doyle, Chair of the SLA School Librarian of the Year Selection committee said:

“They are not joint winners, but each deserves the accolade of School Librarian of the Year.”

Photo from Philip Cooper Photography

“It was an extremely strong, and international, Honour List. In the end we chose two librarians both working in different ways to bring their libraries into the heart of the school and learning.

Candy Gourlay, author of the award-wining Tall Story and recently published second novel, The Shine, presented the award to:

Hilary Cantwell, librarian at St Paul’s Community College Waterford, Republic of Ireland.

Hilary gained expertise in New York schools and public libraries before joining an Irish government programme to create school libraries.

St Paul’s has 430 students and is in a rural county with the highest unemployment in Ireland. It is affiliated to the Irish government’s inclusion programme, Delivering Equality of Opportunity in Schools.

John Iona, librarian at Oasis Academy Enfield, Middlesex.

John creates award-winning resources, delivers the school’s Extended Project Qualification programme and plays a significant role in curriculum planning and support. The school has 1,100 students of which up to 70% have English as a second language. John actively promotes reading for pleasure with a number of initiatives including Reading Games.

A great celebration and the awards a real reflection of the importance of reading and literacy in schools.

Dolphin Booksellers are pleased to celebrate this achievement of the School Library Association.

Sue Martin

Dolphin Booksellers- the best in children’s books always on line

Happy Christmas

Chr Card Dolph 2012

The National Archives for School Resources



I wondered why I had decided to to travel to Kew to spend an afternoon at The National Archives.

Not normally for me to be interested in row upon row of carefully sealed shelves and files containing invaluable documents and manuscripts.

The London branch of The School Library Association had planned the day and it was fantastic!

One hundred and ten miles of carefully sealed shelves, only ever to be touched by the white gloves….we looked at maps of the 1600’s and the invasion of Caribbean islands, beautifully painted in water colour.

In the Education Room we studied a document which, after a Dan Brown type of investigation turned out to be a police report about two suffragettes burning a hotel in Felixstowe.

Lots of resources and an incredible website, where material can be downloaded(good plan to mention The National Archives) and can be a real bonus for research and for collecting more information. Excellent for schools and for anyone ready to learn.

Sue Martin

Dolphin Booksellers the best in children’s books always on line

War Horse

war horse


War Horse, that amazing book written by Michael Morpurgo, and dramatised in the West End at the New London Theatre will shortly be available at the movies.


Steven Spielberg’s latest film production, War Horse, is opening at cinemas on January 13th. It has already been acclaimed for its powerful and thought provoking message.

With a great line up of actors, including Benedict Cumberbatch, Emily Watson and Peter Mullen, and over 200 horses, trained by Bobby Lovgren the film shows the story of the relationship between a boy and a horse.

But yet, there is so much more…. more than a million horses were sent to the front during the first World War,only 62,000 returned. The horse, Joey,is taken through so many different places and into such horrendous situations. It is a tale of endurance, courage and the pitiful way that war treats humans and animals alike.

There are many newspaper editorials, but try The Observer or The Guardian for some extra information.

A remarkable film, an outstanding theatre production and an even better story, written and developed by Michael Morpurgo.

See you at the movies

Sue Martin

You can buy the book through Dolphin Booksellers– the best in children’s books always on line

Happy Christmas




How many books are under the Christmas tree this year?

Hiding in the wrapping paper, tied up with ribbon, stories about to be read and information about to be learned.

There is something about the unwrapping, the excitement, the mystery unfolding….


Image courtesy of Little Tiger Press

Hope you too have at least one book in your presents this year.

with our very best wishes for a

Wonderful Christmas and Happy New Year

Dolphin Booksellers

Dolphin Make Over!



Changes and new style! The Dolphin Booksellers website is having a ‘make over’!

There’s a moving gallery of new titles for the month, easier ways of buying books and a whole range of titles available through our link to Amazon.But we are about more than just selling books. The site will show how you can find information about reading, literacy and many projects that are ‘out there’, to enable children to have fun reading. That’s what we’re about….broadening horizons, bringing good books to children and using technology to enable stories to be read anywhere.

Look at our Amazon link button, useful torch for the book in the sleeping bag. And a kindle, of course would have it’s own light to read with!

Let us know what you think and especially how easy you find buying a book.

Dolphin Booksellers – the best in children’s books, always on line.

When I Grow Up by Benjamin Zephaniah

bzWe met at Keat’s House with Benjamin Zephaniah and Prodeepta Das for the launch of their new book, ‘When I Grow Up’.

It’s a book about breaking down stereotypes and about opening up the world of opportunity.

Benjamin Zephaniah  talked about his childhood and the stereotypes which meant he could either have been a gangster or a painter and decorator. But he wanted to be a poet. It was not expected that black people should go to university. After some time in different jobs he decided to follow his dream and has indeed become a famous and brilliant poet.

bz groupThe book shows all kinds of different jobs, from the Sikh lollipop man to the black woman space scientist,the mathematical clown and the forest keeper. The photos are great and the poems fantastic. A real joy to read and a book to keep looking at.

On the journey back from the launch on the tube, other passengers were leaning over to read the poems.

Published by Frances Lincoln  it is part of their programme of books valuing diversity and difference. See more books by Benjamin Zephaniah here.

Dolphin Booksellers – the best in children’s books always on line

Norway- a land of fjords and islands but ….



Grendel the monster stalks the land

After struggling to make any sense of the awful and indescribable events in Oslo and Utoya I happened to listen to a radio programme with Michael Morpurgo.

Legends and folktales, he said, “ are warning tales, to alarm and terrify us, and to remind us of our own frailty.
The tales of Beowulf and Grendel in Norwegian folklore are bold and scary, Grendel preys on people, bringing death and destruction. Beowulf confronts Grendel and kills him but this is not the end of it. Evil is not so easily vanquished.

‘Whatever the evil one is called, – witch,devil, troll or dragon, we have to be watchful and wary.”

The last in the Harry Potter series, The Deathly Hallows part 2 shows the horrors that confronting evil can bring.

Books for children have a way of dealing with this through story, adventure, spine chilling experiences. Not all children’s books are there for the happy ending, it is the way that children can understand the emotions that are most difficult. We put those emotions in the cupboard at our own expense.

As Michael Morpurgo says, “ The monsters are out there, and they are not like Shrek, they are like Grendel.”






Sue Martin
Dolphin Booksellers the best in children’s books always on line

Unbound – Books are now in your hands



Ever wondered what happens to all those ideas and books that sit in a computer somewhere or in the shed at the bottom of the garden.

Unbound have a solution! This is what they say…

‘ We think authors and readers should decide which books get published. On the Unbound site, authors pitch their ideas directly to you. If you like what you read, you can pledge your support to help make the book happen.

Everyone who supports an author before they reach 100% of the funding target gets their name printed in every edition of that book. All levels include a digital version and immediate access to the author’s shed while they write the book, and supporters of projects that don’t reach their target receive a full refund.

If you like the sound of that, then sign up and have a look around. We’ve got some great projects and we’d love you to help make them happen.

We’re @unbounders on Twitter by the way. ub


Interested, either way as a budding author or keen reader it sounds fun!



Dolphin Booksellers- the best in children’s books always on line.

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