Top 10 Best Summer Holiday Books for Kids

Hooray - school's out for summer! But with so much free time on their hands, it can be a challenge to keep the kids busy, especially on rainy days. But not to worry; we've put together a list of the best summer holiday books for kids to ensure they're engrossed for hours.

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1. Where's Wally? The Treasure Hunt Activity Book

Martin Handford

Despite his elusive nature, Wally is one of the most beloved children's characters around. This bumper sticker and activity book will keep kids entertained as they join Wally and his friends, Wenda, Wizard Whitebeard and Woof, in some out-of-this-world adventures. The gang is on the hunt for treasure and must navigate dozens of searches, mazes, word puzzles, matching games, spot-the-differences, quizzes and riddles. This book is perfect for creative kids and young puzzle-solvers.

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2. The Famous Five Stories

Enid Blyton

Join the intrepid Famous Five - Dick, Anne, Julian, George and Timmy the dog - throughout their exciting summer holidays, as they have adventures in caves, castles, secret passageways and more! The gang must outsmart thieves, hunt for hidden treasure, and unravel all sorts of mysteries in these riveting classic tales.

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3. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Lewis Carroll

This summer holiday, take a trip to Wonderland and immerse yourself in a dreamlike world. Follow the white rabbit down the rabbit hole and tumble into a world where all your normal worries disappear, and you must instead contend with the grinning Cheshire Cat, the nonsensical Mad Hatter and the cruel Queen of Hearts. Full of wonderful wordplay and perplexing puzzles, children will love this riveting read.

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4. Roald Dahl Collection

Roald Dahl

Discover the bizarre, hilarious and phizz-whizzing tales of the wonderful Roald Dahl, including The Twits, Matilda, Fantastic Mr. Fox, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and many more. Explore his wondrous worlds and quirky characters in these truly gloriumptious stories, featuring Roald Dahl's distinctive wit and spellbinding storytelling. This is the perfect selection of stories for the long summer holiday.

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5. Travel Doodles

Adrian Barclay

Ideal for the holidays, kids can use their imaginations to complete a selection of travel-based scenes in this vibrant doodle book. Travel the world from the comfort of your own home on an icy arctic adventure, to a cosy campsite, to the captivating rainforest and even to the treetops to design an epic tree-house!

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6. The Really Fun Activity Book

DK

With summer on the way, this book is sure to keep young minds busy and entertained right through the holidays! It's packed with activities that combine fascinating facts with fun-filled stickers, doodles, colouring and games, all with a sunshine theme to bring a smile to their faces. Whether they're basking in the sun or need some entertainment for a rainy day, this book is perfect for keeping kids occupied during the summer holidays.

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7. His Dark Materials Series

Philip Pullman

Featuring three books - Northern Lights, The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass - this captivating fantasy trilogy follows Lyra and her 'daemon', the animal embodiment of her inner self. This summer holiday, kids can travel with Lyra to amazing fantastical settings, through snowy hills, to an otherworldly city, and even to the Land of the Dead, on all sorts of daring and dangerous quests, accompanied by armoured bears, witches and plenty of strange magic...

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8. Diary of a Wimpy Kid Series

Jeff Kinney

This hilarious worldwide bestseller is beloved by kids from New York to Newcastle! It stars Greg, who finds himself thrust into a new school, where scrawny little weaklings like him must share the corridors with bigger, meaner, tougher kids who are already shaving. Greg decides he must try to become cool, and attempts to do so through his popular friend, Rowley. But what will happen when their friendship is tested to the limits? These books are the perfect light-hearted reads for summer.

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9. Journey to the River Sea

Eva Ibbotson

It is 1910 and Maia, tragically orphaned at just thirteen, is sent from England to faraway Manaus, to live with relatives hundreds of miles up the Amazon. She is accompanied by an enigmatic and eccentric governess who has her own mysterious reasons for making the journey. Before long, both will discover a lush, exotic world, filled with new experiences that will enchant and challenge them both. Young readers will be captivated by this mesmerising tale.

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10. Yoga for You

Rebecca Rissman

The calming and health-boosting art of yoga has been embraced by millions of adults worldwide - so why not encourage your kids to take part, too? With this appealing and friendly guide, specially designed for kids and teens, children can explore a wide range of yoga poses as well as build up their confidence and self-esteem. Both calming and energising, kids will love this beautifully-illustrated book.

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  • Roald Dahl Collection - 15 Books - Collection - 9780141371337 - Roald Dahl
    NROJ 7 years +
    7 years +
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    • £21.99
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    • Just £1.47 per book
    There are no other authors quite like Roald Dahl. A supreme storyteller with a wicked sense of humour, his characters and stories are timeless and unforgettable.

    With striking new artwork to celebrate the Roald Dahl 100 celebrations and a keepsake slipcase featuring Quentin Blake's iconic illustrations, this 15-book collection brings together all Dahl's classic children's novels.

    From Mr. Hoppy and Mrs Silver to Mr & Mrs Twit; and from giant peaches to magic medicines; this is a collection bursting with unique characters, hilarious situations and unforgettable storylines - as well as Dahl's wicked sense of humour.

    An essential addition to any bookshelf, the likes of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Matilda, The Witches and Fantastic Mr Fox have shocked, excited and entertained generations of children and now's your chance to own them all - whatever your age!

    Format: paperback
  • RSAB 7 years +
    7 years +
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    Summer is on its way - and we have the book to keep little minds occupied and entertained in the lead-up, during and right through the summer holidays!

    From the experts at DK, The Really Sunny Activity Book is packed with activities for children aged 7 and over that combine fascinating facts with a whole host of stickers, doodles, colouring and fun-filled games - all with a sunshine theme to bring a smile to their faces.

    So whether your children need something to keep them occupied on a long journey, are outside basking in the sun or are stuck indoors on a traditionally wet summer day, this book - with its beach-, animal-, treasure hunting- and rainbow-themed activities - will provide hours of inspiration!
  • ALBSU 9 years +
    9 years +
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    When Alice follows the White Rabbit down a rabbit hole, she finds herself in an enchanted world, filled with creatures like the Mad Hatter, the disappearing Cheshire Cat, and the Queen of Hearts. Alice quickly finds out that nothing is as it seems in the wild world of Wonderland...
  • ACYRC 11 years +
    11 years +
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    A modern masterpiece from Philip Pullman, this slipcased collection includes all three books in the His Dark Materials trilogy.

    A bestseller all around the world that tackled a number of important and controversial issues, it also won many awards and has had a remarkable influence on literature since.
  • JOR2 9 years +
    9 years +
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    A huge favourite with us at Book People and described by the Sunday Times as 'the most perfect children's book', Eva Ibbotson's Journey to the River Sea is an enchanting read that proves that every kid should live their life full of adventure.

    The story of an orphan shipped to her distant relatives, Maia is disappointed when she is not welcomed with the open arms she was expecting... but the wonders of the Amazonian rainforest soon make up for this!

    When she meets a mysterious boy who lives alone on the wild river shores, things become even more extraordinary. A beautiful, traditional adventure story, we just know you will adore this book.
  • WWTH 5 years +
    5 years +
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    Although he's always been hard to find, it's clear to see that Wally of Where's Wally? fame is one of the most popular children's characters around.

    This sticker and activity book allows children to join Wally and his friends Wenda, Wizard Whitebeard and Woof as they enjoy some out-of-this world adventures.

    The gang are on the hunt for treasure and there are hundreds of searches, mazes, word puzzles, matching games, spot-the-differences, quizzes and riddles to complete. This is a must for children who love Wally and who love being creative.
  • Yoga for You - Hardback - 9781784938154 - Rebecca Rissman
    YOFY 7 years +
    7 years +
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    So many adults are embracing the health- and fitness-giving benefits of yoga, so why not encourage your children to master the exercise, too?

    This book has been written especially for children and teenagers and has a very appealing visual style. It will help them build up their confidence and self-esteem and explains all about two sequences and 35 poses.

    Fully illustrated, one sequence will get children pumped up and energised while the other will help them de-stress and relax.
  • The Famous Five Collection - 22 Books - Collection - 9781444936278 - Enid Blyton
    FFCC 7 years +
    7 years +
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    With mysteries, adventure and lashings of ginger beer, The Famous Five have entertained generations of young readers. In fact, the books have never been out of print!

    Here, in a keepsake box, you can enjoy all 22 novels that follow Julian, Dick, Anne, George and Timmy the dog as they visit some thrilling places and explore and uncover all sorts of secrets. To complete the set, there's a book of short stories about our favourite would-be detectives.

    From Kirrin Island to the lighthouse at Demon's Rocks and farms, castles, caves and secret passages galore, the gang outwit thieves, seek hidden treasure and encounter spook trains in their exciting journeys. Illustrated by Eileen Soper, this complete set of books shows how courage and determination can always help children achieve great things.

    Book People and Enid Blyton - A Lifetime of Adventure
    Format: paperback
  • TVDO 6 years +
    6 years +
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    Fun, simple and very creative, this doodle book asks children to use their imagination to complete a number of travel-based scenes. It's great for keeping them entertained while on long journeys or holidays.

    Bright and appealing, among the amazing scenes to complete are an arctic adventure, the reflection of the water and one of a bunch of city cyclists. Children can also fill a campsite with tents, create an amazing rainforest and design a super tree house.
  • Diary of a Wimpy Kid Collection - 10 Books - Collection - 9780141385839 - Jeff Kinney
    WPYK 9 years +
    9 years +
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    • Just £1.20 per book
    Zoo-wee-mama! Jeff Kinney's Diary of a Wimpy Kid books have now sold over 75 million books worldwide - with 10 million of those sales coming in the UK alone.

    Book People's latest slipcased collection brings together the first 10 books following the misadventures of Greg Heffley and his crazy family including, for the first time in paperback, Old School.

    Greg is an average American schoolboy, but he has a habit of getting into embarrassing but hilarious situations. These books follow his diary as he makes observations on his days and doodles away. From classic road trips to tales of hard luck and the terrifying prospect of finding a date for Valentine's Day, these are sure to have children laughing out loud.
    Format: paperback