Summer Reading Challenge

The Summer Reading Challenge is a nationwide initiative run by the charity, The Reading Agency, which takes place during the school summer holidays.

The challenge encourages children to read at least six books that they own or have borrowed from their library over the holidays. Every summer there’s a new theme - for 2017 it’s Animal Agents which includes illustrations from the UK’s best-selling and well-loved children’s illustrator, Tony Ross.

How to get involved

You can enrol your child on the Summer Reading Challenge at your local library, where there are likely to be activities for pre-school younger siblings too.

To get you in the Animal Agents mood, we’ve come up with some great animal and jungle-themed stories to get your child off to a great start:

Age 3 to 5

Walking Through the Jungle Walking Through the Jungle
by Debbie Harter

Hike through the rainforest, scale a mountain, swim across the ocean, and still make it home for dinner. Rhyme and repetition make learning fun in this selection that teaches actions, animal sounds and exotic settings around the world.

Anna Hibiscus Song Anna Hibiscus Song
by Antinuke and Lauren Tobia

This is the first picture book featuring Anna Hibiscus and she is very happy in it! So happy, in fact, that she can’t quite decide what to do with herself!! So she turns to her grandparents, her aunties, her cousins Chocolate, Angel and Benz, her uncle Tunde and her father, who each offer her a way to express her boundless joy.

Rumble in the Jungle Rumble in the Jungle
by Giles Andreae

From the outset this book is an open invitation for young children to enter the world of the jungle and experience this wonderful collection of animal poems. This chunky board book edition of a bestselling picture book is packed with favourite animals. So come into the jungle for a noisy, rhyming animal romp all little ones will love.

Age 5 to 7

The Enormous Crocodile The Enormous Crocodile
by Roald Dahl and Quentin Blake

The Enormous Crocodile is a horrid greedy grumptious brute who loves to guzzle up little boys and girls. But the other animals have had enough of his cunning tricks, so they scheme to get the better of this foul fiend, once and for all!

Abigail Abigail
by Catherine Rayner

Abigail loves to count. It is her very favourite thing. But when she tries counting Zebra's stripes and Cheetah's spots, they just won't sit still. It's hopeless! What will Abigail do? A beautiful book by award-winning author-illustrator Catherine Rayner, full of gorgeous illustrations of Abigail the giraffe and her friends Cheetah and Zebra.

Jungle Party Jungle Party
by Brian Wildsmith

Python invites the jungle animals to a party where they will all perform tricks. But Python has a trick of his own -- to lure them all into his mouth! Luckily, Elephant is there to save the animals.

Age 7 to 11

Axel Storm Jungle Fortress Axel Storm Jungle Fortress
by Shoo Rayner

Axel Storm's parents are rock stars - and they just want Axel to be a normal boy! But when he goes to stay with his crazy uncles, Axel always ends up stealing the show... Axel Storm is in the jungle on a tough mission: to protect the rainforest from the evil Creesus van Marbles. Luckily, Axel's Uncle Monty is trained in survival skills. Can they save the Amazon before it's too late?

Running Wild Running Wild
by Michael Morpurgo

For Will and his mother, going to Indonesia isn't just a holiday. It's an escape, a new start, a chance to put things behind them - things like the death of Will's father. And to begin with, it seems to be just what they both needed. But then Oona, the elephant Will is riding on the beach, begins acting strangely, shying away from the sea. And that's when the tsunami comes crashing in, and Oona begins to run. Except that when the tsunami is gone, Oona just keeps on running.

The Jungle Book The Jungle Book
by Rudyard Kipling

Mowgli is found in the jungle by wolves, who bring him up as one of their own. The jungle is no easy place to live for a man-cub, and Mowgli must learn its secrets from Baloo the bear, Bagheera the black panther and Kaa the python. But their lessons cannot protect Mowgli from every danger - will he escape from his kidnap by the Monkey-People? And can he get the better of the evil tiger, Shere Khan?

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