Book Review

Ink Pellet’s book review section covers an eclectic selection of new fiction, teachers’ guides, audio books and classics.

Many of our reviews are written by teachers, so we have an expert eye on how texts will work in the classroom. We hope to create a useful archive of reviews so that you can use this as a reference.

If you would like to join our panel of reviewers, please join in or email the editor

We hope the section inspires you to share new fiction with your pupils or to revisit old favorites yourself.

  1. BOOK REVIEW: Acting Shakespeare’s Language

    BOOK REVIEW: Acting Shakespeare’s Language  

    by Andy Hinds Published by Oberon Books Acting Shakespeare’s Language opens with the following quote by Ralph Fiennes: “Andy Hinds offers a rich and detailed path towards a precise contact with the challenge of speaking and inhabiting Shakespeare’s language. This book is an immensely useful resource for anyone teaching, speaking and acting Shakespeare.“ I won’t […]

  2. BOOK REVIEW: Phoenix Rising

    BOOK REVIEW: Phoenix Rising  

    by Bryony Pearce Published by Stripes Publishing From award-winning author Bryony Pearce, comes this gripping YA trilogy set in a future world where fossil fuels have run out and democracy has collapsed. An outlawed pirate crew fight for survival on their ship, the Phoenix, kept afloat by whatever they can salvage or scavenge from the […]

  3. BOOK REVIEW: The Oxford Companion to Children’s Literature

    BOOK REVIEW: The Oxford Companion to Children’s Literature  

    by Daniel Hahn (second edition based on original 1984 edition by Humphrey Carpenter & Mari Pritchard) Published by Oxford University Press By anyone’s standards it’s an ambitious project to attempt to cram into a mere 500,000 words the whole of children’s literature, including that from other English speaking cultures and books translated into English. Children’s […]

  4. Book Review: Acting with Passion by Niki Flacks

    Book Review: Acting with Passion by Niki Flacks  

    Published by Bloomsbury Niki Flacks is described as a director, actor, teacher and psychologist. The most pertinent role, it turns out, is the latter; for to be able to do any of the three requires knowledge of self and the human condition. A regular tutor at the Actors’ Centre, the testimonials speak warmly of her […]

  5. Book Review: The Art of Writing English Literature Essays – GCSE by Neil Bowen

    Book Review: The Art of Writing English Literature Essays – GCSE by Neil Bowen  

    Published by Peripeteia Press There are times when a book lands on your desk and it’s akin to manna from heaven. For those of you who have read my Editor’s Letter on page 3, you will know that the Hopley household, like thousands of others, is in the grip of exam revision. So I left […]

  6. Book Review: Calling the Shots! by Nick Handel

    Book Review: Calling the Shots! by Nick Handel  

    Published by Pogo Learning Nick Handel is a former BBC producer and has used this skill to write a fantastic, easy to use resource that uses film to develop creative writing. Today’s youngsters have a highly developed visual knowledge. Brought up on a diet of video films, games and animated learning techniques – something has […]

  7. Book Review: Mind Games by Teri Terry

    Book Review: Mind Games by Teri Terry  

    Published by Hachette Mind Games is set in a future where almost everything is virtual. Everyone loves the way life is organised, except for a group of people – the refusers. Refusers don’t go into these virtual worlds because they don’t like it or don’t want to. And among these refusers is a girl called […]

  8. Book Review:
    by Scott Westerfield

    Book Review:Afterworldsby Scott Westerfield  

    Published by Simon Pulse The world of literature usually mirrors the new trends and fashions, but there will always be places for the classic supernatural thriller and the timeless romance. For this reason, a book that is able to seamlessly combine both of these genres is instantly shaping up like a must-read, and Scott Westerfield’s […]

  9. Book Review:
    Teaching from the Heart
    by Jonti Marks

    Book Review:Teaching from the Heartby Jonti Marks  

    This little tome should be kept in your drawer/briefcase pocket/tablet case for those moments of despair and frustration that hit all teachers at some time. Featuring 100 ‘meditations for teachers’ and a commentary on each, Jonti Mark’s self-published book brings together words from some of the most famous teachers, educators and historical figures to inspire, […]

  10. Book Review:
    The Quality of Mercy
    by Peter Brook

    Book Review:The Quality of Mercyby Peter Brook  

    Published by Nick Hern Books An hour glass on the book’s front cover suggests encapsulating quintessential qualities in the slightest of vessels – and in this slim volume of reflections on Shakespeare the ground-breaking grandee of the stage sets out to do just that. In medieval times a monk would ponder mortality by keeping a […]