Our Beautiful Game

A stand-out novel inspired by the incredible true stories of female football legends like Lily Parr and Alice Woods.

A hundred years before the Lionesses, Lily Parr, Alice Woods and their teammates were proudly playing their beloved, exciting and skilful game.

They can take our ball, but they can never stop the game.

As men were sent to fight in the war, women and girls took their place in munitions factories. Football became a favourite pastime and, before long, they were creating all-female sides and playing public matches to sell-out crowds, overshadowing the men’s football. Despite drawing crowds of 50,000, women’s football was outlawed by the Football Association in 1921, who deemed it ‘unsuitable for females’.

This is the incredible story of these amazing women.

The Ocean Squid Explorers’ Club

Ursula knew the submarine wasn’t designed to go this deep, but what choice did they have? No one wanted to get swallowed up by a colossal sneezing jellyfish!


In a distant watery corner of the Explorers Kingdom, a submarine engineer, Ursula, is determined to become an explorer. Unfortunately, she hides an extraordinary secret, which makes her the sworn enemy of the Ocean Squid Explorers’ Club were they ever to find out . . . But when The Collector threatens the Club, Ursula throws caution to the wind and leads an expedition through treacherous waters, filled with gremlins, aboard the Blowfish submarine – and joined by her friends Max, Genie and Jai – and even her idol Stella!

Uki and the Swamp Spirit

There, right in the heart of the fen, was his target. It oozed and throbbed and Uki had the sensation of a sickly green light, spreading out through the networks of water. Of tendrils connecting all the creatures of the marsh in a web. Seeking them, joining them . . . changing them. He could feel the life, because the spirit was linking itself to it. Linking itself so it could poison it all and destroy it. 


After defeating Valkus, Uki and his friends still have two more spirits to find and capture. Next up is Charice, who is spreading disease through the swamps. Can Uki and his friends outwit him whilst being chased by the evil Endwatch and Jori’s clan of assassins?

The World’s Most Magnificent Machines

The longest ship ever built, the heaviest digger and the largest aeroplane, the world’s first working motorcar, and its most expensive one. What machines like these have in common is that they all say a lot about the inventiveness and imagination of the people who conceived and created them. Some of them are useful, others are just a bit of fun, but the best ones are truly magnificent, and fascinating to discover.

Gender Swapped Fairy Tales

Once upon a time, in the middle of winter, a King sat at a window and sewed. As he sewed and gazed out onto the landscape, he pricked his finger with the needle, and three drops of blood fell onto the snow outside . . .

People have been telling fairy tales to their children for hundreds of years. And for almost as long, people have been rewriting those fairy tales – to help their children imagine a world where they are the heroes. Karrie and Jon were reading their child these stories when they hit upon a dilemma, something previous versions of these stories were missing, and so they decided to make one vital change..

They haven’t rewritten the stories in this book. They haven’t reimagined endings, or reinvented characters. What they have done is switch all the genders.

It might not sound like that much of a change, but you’ll be dazzled by the world this swap creates – and amazed by the new characters you’re about to discover.

Uki and the Outcasts

‘EXCELLENT,’ says the bard. ‘It’s probably a good idea for you to know about him.’
‘Wait . . . him? Who’s him?’ said Rue.
‘Uki,’ says the bard. ‘Uki Patchwork. The Magpie Demon. Uki of the Two Furs.’

From the Ice Wastes beyond the Cinder Wall emerges an unlikely hero. Rejected by his village and left to die, young Uki is given life and unique powers by a long-buried spirit from the time of the Ancients . . . and a life or death mission.

Joined by two other outcasts – a trained assassin who refuses to kill people and a very short rabbit who rides the fastest jerboa on the plains – Uki must capture Valkus, the Spirit of War, before rabbitkind destroys itself in conflict.

The Beasts of Grimheart

The bard looks up at the three figures. They have black hooded cloaks and long robes. From the holes in their masks, three pairs of eyes watch him: cold, calm, emotionless.‘Yes,’ says the bard. ‘They’re bonedancers. You don’t need to sound quite so excited, though. They have come to kill me.’

And so it is that the bard and and his young apprentice Rue are taken to Spinestone, the temple warren of the bonedancers. It is here that the bard is ordered to retell the tale that has got him in so much trouble . . . and so to the next instalment in the astonishing tale of Podkin One-Ear . . .

Podkin, Paz and Pook once again find their home under threat, but this time they are ready to fight! Podkin and the others leave for Sparrowfast to ask their uncle for the use of his magic bow. It’s the one weapon that could save them all. But as they flee into the forest depths, it seems they have been betrayed . . .

The Gift of Dark Hollow

The bard tiptoes out of his room, the crow-dream still echoing in his head, making him twitch at imaginary creaks of iron wings . . .

The bard must leave Thornbury. It is not safe for him to stay. Rue, his new apprentice, travels with him – keen to learn his trade – and hear the next installment in the legend of Podkin One-Ear . . .

Podkin and his fellow rabbits have been sheltering in Dark Hollow after their battle with Scramashank. Paz tends to the rabbits with sleeping sickness; Crom meets with the war council . . . Podkin has nothing to do! Frustrated, Podkin goes exploring and discovers an abandoned underground chamber. Armed with the Gift of Dark Hollow, Podkin learns to moonstride, and Paz is rewarded with a magical gift of her own . . .

The Legend Podkin One-Ear

 A thick white blanket covers the wide slopes of the band of hills known as the Razorback Downs . . .

Podkin is the son of a warrior chieftain. He knows that one day it will be up to him to lead his warren and guard it in times of danger. But for now, he’s quite happy to laze around annoying his older sister Paz, and playing with his baby brother Pook. Then Podkin’s home is brutally attacked, and the young rabbits are forced to flee. The terrifying Gorm are on the rampage, and no one and nowhere is safe. With danger all around them, Podkin must protect his family, uncover his destiny, and attempt to defeat the most horrifying enemy rabbitkind has ever known.

Chester Parsons is Not a Gorilla

When Chester discovers he can mind jump, his sister Amy wastes no time in putting his new skills to work boosting the viewing figures on her video blog. And when a TV company takes them global, he does his most daring mind jump yet, into the brain of Tito the gorilla. The trouble is, when he tries to return to his own body – it’s gone!

Has it been stolen? But who would want it, and why? And how come Chester suddenly has the urge to search Amy’s hair for fleas? The quest to find the answers takes him on a journey beyond his wildest imagination.

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