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 favourites yourself

  1. Carnegie 2018

    Carnegie 2018  

    This year’s Carnegie shortlist has been announced with schools and reading groups around the country shadowing the process and providing valuable feedback. Susan Elkin is our guide. The CILIP Carnegie Medal, awarded annually for a children’s book, is the prize that most authors writing for young people covet above all others. The judges are librarians from […]

  2. Capital gains

    Capital gains  

    For over 20 years Mousetrap Theatre Projects has helped nearly 200,000 young people experience theatre in London through trips to West End shows as well as practical drama workshops. Mark Glover finds out how the charity continues to make venues in the capital more welcoming and the challenges that teachers face when trying to book […]

  3. School’s out – time for summer school


    Susan Elkin rounds up some of this year’s options. Some are residential. Others work on a daily attendance basis. Some (such as Dorset Opera Summer School: lead to a large semi-professional scale production. Others simply present work for family and friends at the end of the week. The summer school mix available across the […]

  4. Royal Opera House Trailblazers

    Royal Opera House Trailblazers  

    If you think the Royal Opera House is all, and only, about toffs enjoying an abstruse art form in very expensive seats then you couldn’t be more wrong. Susan Elkin went along to Thurrock to find out more. The company’s very active Learning and Participation team works very hard indeed to include and develop people […]

  5. Seaing the potential

    Seaing the potential  

    The new-look Stephen Joseph Theatre in Scarborough plays an important role in the engagement of young people in the area. Mark Glover speaks to Associate Director Diana Logan about the recent refurbishment, strong teacher relationships and how youth engagement is a life-long project on the North Yorkshire coast. As a seaside resort Scarborough is as […]

  6. Puppetry


    With many productions incorporating puppetry, Susan Elkin takes a look at the growth of this traditional artform and the training opportunities now available. Puppetry has probably been around for as long as children and adults have played make-believe games. Hold a tree branch in a certain way or make it “walk”. It becomes a tiny […]

  7. Punchdrunk – Small Wonders

    Punchdrunk – Small Wonders  

    Creating innovative theatre experiences and education workshops, Susan Elkin visits Punchdrunk in North London in advance of Small Wonders, their next production. Founded by Felix Barrett 19 years ago, Punchdrunk has long had an admirable track record of cutting edge, immersive shows which reach audiences and use spaces innovatively. The work has evolved beyond “promenade […]

  8. EXHIBITION: Human Relationships

    EXHIBITION: Human Relationships  

    Two contrasting shows at the Tate Modern and Tate Britain caught the attention of Graham Hooper, who provides us with an insight into both. For anyone, your fiftieth year can tricky. Suspecting that your best years are behind you, and knowing that others may well agree. Perhaps the body betrays signs of being that bit […]

  9. Sir Lenny Henry has helped launch Let’s Play

    Sir Lenny Henry has helped launch Let’s Play  

    The National Theatre’s major new initiative supporting the development of drama and theatre in primary schools across the country. Developed by professional theatre artists alongside teachers and senior leaders from primary schools across the country, Let’s Play is an ambitious creative learning programme designed to transform creativity and theatre-making in schools.  Using a programme of Continued Professional Development […]

  10. Creative Producing

    Creative Producing  

    Kevin Wyatt-Lown, Head of Marketing at East 15, outlines their new degree course in Creative Producing, aiming to train individuals in theatre making from behind the scenes.