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In Book People's hand-picked range of contemporary books for children, you'll find novels that have become modern favourites. With unforgettable storylines, incredible characters and so much more, these are new reads that belong on your bookshelf.

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Contemporary Books for Children

  • Crossfire

    Malorie Blackman

    Product Code: BYYVW
    Paperback 13 years +
    Crossfire is the long-awaited new novel in legendary author Malorie Blackman's ground-breaking Noughts & Crosses series - perfect for fans of The Handmaid's Tale and The Power. 'The Noughts & Crosses series are still my favourite books of all time and showed me just how amazing story-telling could be' - Stormzy Thirty-four years have passed since Sephy Hadley - a Cross - first met Callum McGregor - a Nought. Their love was forbidden, powerful - and deadly. Life is seemingly very different now for Noughts and Crosses - including for Sephy and Callum's families. But old wounds from the past are hard to heal, and when you're playing a game as dangerous as they are, it won't be long before someone gets caught in the crossfire. Praise for Noughts & Crosses: 'The most original book I've ever read' Benjamin Zephaniah 'Blackman "gets" people . . . she "gets" humanity as a whole, too' Guardian 'Powerful' Sunday Times
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  • We Were Liars

    E. Lockhart

    Product Code: AKSVI
    Paperback 14 years +
    (4)
    "E. Lockhart is one of our most important novelists, and she has given us her best book yet. Thrilling, beautiful, and blisteringly smart, We were Liars is utterly unforgettable". (John Green, number 1 New York Times bestselling author of The Fault In Our Stars). "Irresistible." (The New York Times Book Review). "Haunting, sophisticated." (The Wall Street Journal). "Bowl-you-over." (Cosmopolitan). "So freaking good." (Sarah Dessen). "Such beautiful writing." (Libba Bray). "Beautiful and disturbing." (Justine Larbalestier). "Better than the hype." (Lauren Oliver). We are the Liars. We are beautiful, privileged and live a life of carefree luxury. We are cracked and broken. It is a story of love and romance. It is a tale of tragedy. Which are lies? Which is truth?
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  • Dustbin Baby

    Jacqueline Wilson

    Product Code: ACGPL
    Paperback 11 years +
    (2)
    Sure to delight young fans of Jacqueline Wilson books, Dustbin Baby is a real favourite at the Book People and we think children aged 9 and up will fall in love with it!

    April knows she was found in a dustbin fourteen years ago as a new-born baby. And now she's fairly happily settled with her foster mother, Marion. But she's desperate to recall what happened in the intervening years, and to see if she can find out where she really came from in the first place.

    A highly moving but very accessible novel, Jacqueline Wilson's Dustbin Baby is an exhibition in her unique, acclaimed and adored style of writing for children.
    • £6.89
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  • The Tattooist of Auschwitz

    Heather Morris

    Product Code: BXIEU
    Paperback 14 years +
    The incredible bestselling true story. For readers of The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas and The Diary of Anne Frank Heart-breaking - a tale of love and survival amidst the horrors of Auschwitz Human - the real story behind one of the most potent symbols of the Holocaust - the blue numbers tattooed on prisoners' arms Inspirational - the very best of humanity in the very worst of circumstances Unforgettable - a story untold for over seventy years is finally shared Life-affirming - one man's determination to survive and live a full life with the woman he loved Fully verified - Lale Sokolov's background and story has been fact-checked against all available documentary evidence The Story The Tattooist of Auschwitz is based on the true story of Lale and Gita Sokolov, two Slovakian Jews who survived Auschwitz. When Lale, given the job of tattooing the prisoners, saw Gita waiting in line, it was love at first sight. In that moment he determined to keep them both alive. This is a story of hope and of courage.
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  • Are We All Lemmings and Snowflakes?

    Holly Bourne

    Product Code: BROCK
    Paperback 14 years +
    Welcome to Camp Reset, a summer camp with a difference. A place offering a shot at "normality" for Olive, a girl on the edge, and for her new friends, who are all dealing with their own battles. But as Olive settles in, she starts to wonder - maybe it's this messed up world that needs fixing, and not them. And so she comes up with a plan. Because together, snowflakes can form avalanches... A trailblazing and painfully honest novel about mental health, friendship and making this crazy world a kinder place.
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  • My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece

    Annabel Pitcher

    Product Code: AHTPZ
    Paperback 12 years +
    Ten-year-old Jamie Matthews has just moved to the Lake District with his Dad and his teenage sister, Jasmine for a 'Fresh New Start'.

    Five years ago his sister's twin, Rose, was blown up by a terrorist bomb. His parents are wrecked by their grief, Jasmine turns to piercing, pink hair and stops eating. The family falls apart.

    But Jamie hasn't cried in all that time. To him Rose is just a distant memory. Jamie is far more interested in his cat, Roger, his birthday Spider-Man T-shirt, and in keeping his new friend Sunya a secret from his dad.

    And in his deep longing and unshakeable belief that his Mum will come back to the family she walked out on months ago. When he sees a TV advert for a talent show, he feels certain that this will change everything and bring them all back together once and for all.

    Annabel Pitcher's My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece has been chosen as a World Book Night book for 2015.
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  • Girls Out Late

    Jacqueline Wilson

    Product Code: ACGPO
    Paperback 11 years +
    Ellie has a boyfriend! Interested in her - not in her best friends, Magda and Nadine! She and Russell are made for each other - drawn together by their shared enjoyment of art. If only Dad thought Russell was perfect too...

    And as Ellie runs into trouble with a parent who thinks his daughter is too young for after-dark trysts in the park with oh-so-gorgeous Russell, Magda has a crush on a teacher - and Nadine's falling for slimy Liam again. What they need is a girls' night out!

    Written by the brilliant children's bestseller, Jacqueline Wilson, and illustrated by none other than Nick Sharratt, of course, Girls Out Late is a story that will be returned to by readers aged 7 and up again and again.
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  • Throne of Glass

    Sarah J. Maas

    Product Code: AGIUB
    Paperback 15 years +
    (1)
    Meet Celaena Sardothien. Beautiful. Deadly. Destined for greatness. In the dark, filthy salt mines of Endovier, an eighteen-year-old girl is serving a life sentence. She is a trained assassin, the best of her kind, but she made a fatal mistake. She got caught. Young Captain Westfall offers her a deal: her freedom in return for one huge sacrifice. Celaena must represent the prince in a to-the-death tournament - fighting the most gifted thieves and assassins in the land. Live or die, Celaena will be free. Win or lose, she is about to discover her true destiny. But will her assassin's heart be melted?
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  • Kiss

    Jacqueline Wilson

    Product Code: ADPGV
    Paperback 11 years +
    Sylvie and Carl have been friends since they were tiny children. They've always played together, called each other boyfriend and girlfriend and, deep down, Sylvie has always believed that they'd end up married to each other. They even have a a magical fantasy world that belongs to them alone.

    But as they become older, things are starting to change... Sylvie would still rather spend all her time with Carl - but Carl has a new friend, Paul, who is taking all his attention. Now, Carl seems much less happy to be called Sylvie's boyfriend - and in a game of spin the bottle, he avoids having to kiss her. Sylvie can tell his feelings have changed and that their future together might not be so clear-cut after all. But can she guess at the true reasons behind it all?

    Touching and compelling, Kiss is a delicately handled treatment of love and sexuality from award-winning children's author Jacqueline Wilson. A beautiful book!
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  • Love Lessons

    Jacqueline Wilson

    Product Code: ACGPJ
    Paperback 11 years +
    Prue and her sister Grace have been educated at home by their controlling, super-strict father all their lives. But when Dad has a stroke and ends up in hospital, unable to move or speak, unable to cope with their education and a sick husband, the girls' mother sends them to the local comprehensive and they experience school life for the first time...

    Prue had never thought she'd find it so hard to fit in. The only person she can talk to is her art teacher, Rax. She and Rax bond over art lessons, and soon he asks her to babysit for his young children while he and his wife have a night out on a Friday. As her feelings for Rax develop, she begins to realise that perhaps he feels the same way about her. But he can't act upon them, can he?

    Presenting an absorbing portrait of a forbidden relationship for teenage readers, Love Lessons is a fantastic read for children aged 11 and over. Jacqueline Wilson books never cease to amaze us here at the Book People - a wonderful story!
    • £6.29
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  • Opposite of Always

    Justin Reynolds

    Product Code: BWMBH
    Paperback 13 years +
    'One of the best love stories I've ever read.' Angie Thomas, bestselling author of The Hate U Give. From debut author justin a. reynolds comes The Opposite of Always, a razor-sharp, hilarious and heartfelt novel about the choices we make, the people we choose and the moments that make life worth reliving. Perfect for fans of Nicola Yoon and John Green. When Jack and Kate meet at a party, he knows he's falling - hard. Soon she's meeting his best friends and Kate wins them over as easily as she did Jack. But then Kate dies. And their story should end there. Yet Kate's death sends Jack back to the beginning, the moment they first meet, and Kate's there again. Healthy, happy, and charming as ever. Jack isn't sure if he's losing his mind. Still, if he has a chance to prevent Kate's death, he'll take it. Even if that means believing in time travel. However, Jack will learn that his actions are not without consequences. And when one choice turns deadly for someone else close to him, he has to figure out what he's willing to do to save the people he loves. 'Read this one, reread it, and then hug it to your chest.' Becky Albertalli, bestselling author of Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
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  • The Poet X

    Elizabeth Acevedo

    Product Code: BOLAK
    Paperback 12 years +
    A powerful novel with an unforgettable voice, perfect for fans of Rupi Kaur, The Hate U Give and Sarah Crossan's One. Xiomara has always kept her words to herself. When it comes to standing her ground in her Harlem neighbourhood, she lets her fists and her fierceness do the talking. But X has secrets - her feelings for a boy in her bio class, and the notebook full of poems that she keeps under her bed. And a slam poetry club that will pull those secrets into the spotlight. Because in spite of a world that might not want to hear her, Xiomara refuses to stay silent. A novel about finding your voice and standing up for what you believe in, no matter how hard it is to say. Brave, bold and beautifully written, this is perfect for fans of Orangeboy, Nicola Yoon's Everything Everything and Zoella Book Club choice Moxie. ELIZABETH ACEVEDO was born and raised in New York City and her poetry is infused with Dominican bolero and her beloved city's tough grit. She holds a BA in Performing Arts from The George Washington University and an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Maryland. With over twelve years of performance experience, Acevedo has been a featured performer on BET and Mun2, as well as delivered several TED Talks. She has performed internationally and her poetry has been featured in Cosmopolitan, The Huffington Post and Teen Vogue. Elizabeth is a National Slam Champion, Beltway Grand Slam Champion, and the 2016 Women of the World Poetry Slam representative for Washington, D.C, where she lives and works.

    Winner of the CILIP Carnegie Medal 2019.
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  • A Jigsaw of Fire and Stars

    Yaba Badoe

    Product Code: BMJKS
    Paperback 12 years +
    A powerful, haunting, contemporary debut that steps seamlessly from the horrors of people-trafficking to the magic of African folklore, by an award-winning Ghanaian-British filmmaker. Sante was a baby when she was washed ashore in a sea-chest laden with treasure. It seems she is the sole survivor of the tragic sinking of a ship carrying migrants and refugees. Her people. Fourteen years on she's a member of Mama Rose's unique and dazzling circus. But, from their watery grave, the unquiet dead are calling Sante to avenge them: A bamboo flute. A golden bangle. A ripening mango which must not fall... ... are these the missing pieces of the jigsaw which will tell Sante's story?

    This title has been shortlisted for 2018's Branford Boase Award.
    • £6.39
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  • It Only Happens in the Movies

    Holly Bourne

    Product Code: BKHLT
    Paperback 13 years +
    The greatest love story ever told doesn't feature kissing in the snow or racing to airports. It features pain and confusion and hope and wonder and a ban on cheesy cliches. Oh, and zombies...YA star Holly Bourne tackles real love in this hugely funny and poignant novel.

    This title has been shortlisted for 2018's YA Book Award.
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  • Paper Butterflies

    Lisa Heathfield

    Product Code: AUHBQ
    Paperback 14 years +
    Stand By Me meets We Were Liars - a heartbreaking and stunning breakout novel for teenagers from the award-nominated author of Seed. June's life at home with her stepmother and stepsister is a dark one - and a secret one. Not even her father knows about it. She's trapped like a butterfly in a net. But then she meets Blister, a boy in the woods. And in him, June recognises the tiniest glimmer of hope that perhaps she can find a way to fly far, far away from home and be free. Because every creature in this world deserves their freedom ...but at what price? Paper Butterflies is an unforgettable read, perfect for fans of Lisa Williamson's The Art of Being Normal, Jandy Nelson, Sarah Crossan and Louise O'Neill. Lisa Heathfield launched her writing career with Seed, her stunning YA debut about a cult. Before becoming a mum to her three sons, she was a secondary school English teacher and loved inspiring teenagers to read. Paper Butterflies is her beautiful and heart-breaking second novel. Lisa lives in Brighton.

    This title has been shortlisted for 2017's YA Book Award.
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  • Love Hurts

    Malorie Blackman

    Product Code: AMDMW
    Paperback 12 years +
    Malorie Blackman brings together the best teen writers of today in a stunningly romantic collection about love against the odds. Featuring short stories and extracts about modern star-crossed lovers from stars such as Gayle Forman, Markus Zusak, Patrick Ness and Andrew Smith, and with a brand-new story from Malorie Blackman herself, Love Hurts looks at every kind of relationship, from first kiss to final heartbreak.
    • £7.69
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  • Angus, Thongs and Full-frontal Snogging

    Louise Rennison

    Product Code: AABIY
    Paperback 13 years +
    Brilliantly funny, teenage angst author Louise Rennison's first book about the confessions of crazy but lovable Georgia Nicolson. Now repackaged in a gorgeous new paperback and looking even fabber than ever. Louise is an international bestselling author and her books can't fail to make you laugh out loud. There are six things very wrong with my life: 1. I have one of those under-the-skin spots that will never come to a head but lurk in a red way for the next two years. 2. It is on my nose. 3. I have a three-year-old sister who may have peed somewhere in my room. 4. In fourteen days the summer hols will be over and then it will be back to Stalag 14 and Oberfuhrer Frau Simpson and her bunch of sadistic 'teachers'. 5. I am very ugly and need to go into an ugly home. 6. I went to a party dressed as a stuffed olive. Follow Georgia's hilarious antics as she tries to overcome the dilemma's that are weighing up against her, and muddle her way through teenage life and all that it entails: how to replace accidentally shaved-off eyebrows; how to cope with Angus, her small labrador-sized Scottish wildcat; her first kiss with Peter -- afterwards known as Whelk Boy; annoying teachers; unsympathetic friends and family, and how to entice Robbie the Sex God! Phew -- she's really got her work cut out!
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  • All Our Yesterdays

    Cristin Terrill

    Product Code: APVVK
    Paperback 11 years +
    A brilliantly brain-warping thriller and a love story that leaps back and forth in time - All Our Yesterdays is an amazing first novel, perfect for fans of The Hunger Games. Em is locked in a bare, cold cell with no comforts. Finn is in the cell next door. The Doctor is keeping them there until they tell him what he wants to know. Trouble is, what he wants to know hasn't happened yet. Em and Finn have a shared past, but no future unless they can find a way out. The present is torture - being kept apart, overhearing each other's anguish as the Doctor relentlessly seeks answers. There's no way back from here, to what they used to be, the world they used to know. Then Em finds a note in her cell which changes everything. It's from her future self and contains some simple but very clear instructions. Em must travel back in time to avert a tragedy that's about to unfold. Worse, she has to pursue and kill the boy she loves to change the future ...
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  • Moonrise

    Sarah Crossan

    Product Code: BQHWS
    Paperback 13 years +
    SHORTLISTED FOR THE COSTA CHILDREN'S BOOK AWARD 2017 SHORTLISTED FOR THE YA BOOK PRIZE 2018 SHORTLISTED FOR THE CBI BOOK OF THE YEAR AWARD 2018 SHORTLISTED FOR THE CLiPPA AWARD 2018 'Devastating ... Any reader with a heart will weep buckets' Sunday Times Book of the Week They think I hurt someone. But I didn't. You hear? Cos people are gonna be telling you all kinds of lies. I need you to know the truth. Joe hasn't seen his brother for ten years, and it's for the most brutal of reasons. Ed is on death row. But now Ed's execution date has been set, and Joe is determined to spend those last weeks with him, no matter what other people think ... From one-time winner and two-time Carnegie Medal shortlisted author Sarah Crossan, this poignant, stirring, huge-hearted novel asks big questions. What value do you place on life? What can you forgive? And just how do you say goodbye?
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  • Things a Bright Girl Can Do

    Sally Nicholls

    Product Code: BMVQP
    Paperback 14 years +
    Through rallies and marches, in polite drawing rooms and freezing prison cells and the poverty-stricken slums of the East End, three courageous young women join the fight for the vote. Evelyn is seventeen, and though she is rich and clever, she may never be allowed to follow her older brother to university. Enraged that she is expected to marry her childhood sweetheart rather than be educated, she joins the Suffragettes, and vows to pay the ultimate price for women's freedom. May is fifteen, and already sworn to the cause, though she and her fellow Suffragists refuse violence. When she meets Nell, a girl who's grown up in hardship, she sees a kindred spirit. Together and in love, the two girls start to dream of a world where all kinds of women have their place. But the fight for freedom will challenge Evelyn, May and Nell more than they ever could believe. As war looms, just how much are they willing to sacrifice?

    This title has been shortlisted for 2019's CILIP Carnegie Medal.
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  • Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda: Love Simon Movie Tie-In

    Becky Albertalli

    Product Code: BMRMR
    Paperback 12 years +
    The beloved, award-winning novel will soon be a major motion picture starring 13 Reasons Why's Katherine Langford and Everything, Everything's Nick Robinson. 'Worthy of Fault in Our Stars-level obsession.' Entertainment Weekly'I love you, SIMON. I LOVE YOU! And I love this fresh, funny, live-out-loud book." Jennifer Niven, bestselling author of All the Bright PlacesStraight people should have to come out too. And the more awkward it is, the better. Simon Spier is sixteen and trying to work out who he is - and what he's looking for. But when one of his emails to the very distracting Blue falls into the wrong hands, things get all kinds of complicated.Because, for Simon, falling for Blue is a big deal . . .It's a holy freaking huge awesome deal.
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  • Mirror, Mirror

    Cara Delevingne

    Product Code: BKHBL
    Hardback 14 years +
    Friend. Lover. Victim. Traitor. When you look in the mirror, what do you see? Sixteen-year-old friends Red, Leo, Rose, and Naomi are misfits; still figuring out who they are and who they want to be. Life isn't perfect, but music brings them together, and they are excited about what the future holds for their band, Mirror, Mirror. That is until Naomi vanishes before being pulled unconscious out of the river. She's left fighting for her life in a coma. The police claim it was a failed suicide attempt, but her friends aren't convinced. Will Naomi ever wake up? What -- or perhaps who -- led her to that hospital bed? And how did Red, the self-styled protector of the group, fail to spot the warning signs? While Rose turns to wild partying and Leo is shrouded by black moods, Red sets out to uncover the truth. It's a journey that will cause Red's world to crack, exposing the group's darkest secrets. Nothing will ever be the same again, because once a mirror is shattered, it can't be fixed. Cara Delevingne, the voice of her generation, explores identity, sexuality, friendship and betrayal in this gripping and powerful coming-of-age story. For fans of WE WERE LIARS, THIRTEEN REASONS WHY and THE GIRLS.
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  • Moonrise

    Sarah Crossan

    Product Code: BHAPJ
    Hardback 13 years +
    The astonishing new novel from Carnegie Medal, CliPPA Poetry Award, YA Book Prize and CBI Book of the Year Award winning author Sarah Crossan. They think I hurt someone. But I didn't. You hear? Cos people are gonna be telling you all kinds of lies. I need you to know the truth. Joe hasn't seen his brother for ten years, and it's for the most brutal of reasons. Ed is on death row. But now Ed's execution date has been set, and Joe is determined to spend those last weeks with him, no matter what other people think ...From one-time winner and two-time Carnegie Medal shortlisted author Sarah Crossan, this poignant, stirring, huge-hearted novel asks big questions. What value do you place on life? What can you forgive? And just how do you say goodbye?

    This title has been shortlisted for 2018?s YA Book Award.
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  • And Then We Ran

    Katy Cannon

    Product Code: AYEAM
    Paperback 12 years +
    A road-trip story about following your dreams and embracing the unexpected. Megan knows what she wants out of life and she intends to get it, whatever her parents say. Elliott has given up on all his plans for the future - but then Megan bursts into his life with a proposal that could change it forever. Together they embark on a road trip to escape their hometown and chase their dreams. But life is a journey and not even Megan can control where theirs will lead...Perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen, Rainbow Rowell and Non Pratt.
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Our wide range of contemporary books features treasured modern favourites, poignant coming-of-age tales, exciting books by YouTube stars, gripping novels by highly-acclaimed authors, and contemporary classics for kids of all ages.

Modern must-haves

Many of our contemporary titles are hugely popular and mustn’t be missed. Check out some of our best-loved books, including Noughts and Crosses, The Story of Tracy Beaker, The Fault in Our Stars and many more.

Inspirational authors and thrilling books

Our range features titles from celebrated authors including Jacqueline Wilson, James Patterson and Louise Rennison, as well as exciting modern books from YouTube stars including Zoe Sugg and John Green. Kids are guaranteed to love these brilliant authors’ funny, poignant and captivating books.

Contemporary themes, perfect for modern kids

Contemporary books often highlight important issues in modern society, introducing children to tricky topics with sensitivity and humour. Children will learn about loss, love, bereavement, mental health difficulties, growing up and the increasingly pervasive online world in these illuminating titles.

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