Girl Zone Book Club

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I have enjoyed running my Year Six ‘Girl Zone Book Club’ for many years now. The school I work at is all girls, hence ‘Girl Zone’, but I have run similar styles of book clubs at boys schools and co-ed schools. I even had a stint running a book club for high school International students, which was a fabulous way to introduce students to Australian culture and middle grade or YA writing.

Our latest Girl Zone Book Club meeting was this evening and we were discussing ‘Catch a Falling Star’ by Meg McKinlay, a middle grade novel which absolutely floored me when I first read it as an ARC. I love all Meg McKinlay’s writing, but this one was particularly wonderful and I hoped that the time period in which it is set (1979) would also appeal to the parents/aunts/older siblings reading along with the Year Six students.

Multiple-award-winning author Meg McKinlay’s latest middle grade novel places the reader at that tricky intersection where logic and science meet magic and hope, a place where many of us find ourselves when dealing with loss, change and having to let go. A stunning coming of age novel…I’m calling it early this year…there will be awards in the future of ‘Catch a Falling Star’. Full review here. 

Click on title links or cover image to purchase from Booktopia. 

Next up we are reading one of the titles below – this meeting I let them have a vote because occasionally I give up control – occasionally. All are reads for young people from 11+ which I have greatly enjoyed over the last few months.

‘Sick Bay’ by Nova Weetman

‘The Mulberry Tree’ by Allison Rushby

‘The Book of Secrets’ by Allison Tait

‘Everything I’ve Never Said’ by Samantha Wheeler

‘The Forgotten Pearl’ by Belinda Murrell

‘Amal Unbound’ by Aisha Saeed

‘Vincent and the Grandest Hotel on Earth’ by Lisa Nicol

If you are after further books for this age group, I have listed all the books we have read in Year Six Girl Zone Book Club over the last few years here, here and here. For inter-generational reading I do find that historical fiction tends to be enjoyed by all ages, as is realistic fiction. As much as I try and stretch readers with fantasy and dystopian novels, these can be a harder sell, but I like to include at least one each year because it is important to read widely and explore other genres! I have been singing the praises of these two Emily Rodda novels recently, for readers 10-13, and if your readers have not yet devoured them…I suggest you ‘add to cart’.

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  1. Diana Hodge on May 26, 2021 at 6:23 am

    I would like to find a list of teenage girls &
    Boys reading for
    Boys:- 13 to 15 ;( not a reader but wants to be
    able to enjoy it- main interest is soccer)
    Girl -15-18 A progressive avid reader looking for thoughtful stimulating reading to help cover the transition to adulthood
    Broad interests- sport fashion environment
    Relationships (boys!!) health/food youth leadership.👏🙏

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