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Junior Book Club with Katriona McFadden

Friday, 26 March 2010

Katriona McFadden


Katriona McFadden is a researcher and reporter with RTÉ Radio One; she's currently working on the Mooney Show. She's also involved with the kids digital radio station RTÉ Junior. Katriona comes from Milford in Co Donegal originally where her Mum, Dad and brother still live.

She has a BA Journalism from DCU. She's been with RTÉ since leaving college in 2001 and has worked in a variety of roles including presenting her own 6-part television show Community Challenge in 2006. She also presented kids shows Out With The Kids and The Funday Show on RTÉ Radio One.

Picture Books (Under 5's)

The Heart and the Bottle by Oliver Jeffers, Northern Irish author and illustrator. Famous for his award-winning picture books, this is his 6th book and set to feature in an upcoming movie directed by Terry Locke. Story goes that a curious little girl asks lots of questions of a male family member who sits in an armchair. We guess that it's her granddad from his clothes but we're not told for sure.

One day the chair is empty. The little girl bottles up her feelings by placing her heart in a bottle and carrying it around. It's heavy and awkward and finally another little girl helps her to open the bottle. A very sweet way of gently explaining death to a small child.

Young Readers:

Emma the Penguin by Sarah Webb. An Irish author, Sarah Webb is great, she also has a cracking new book out for slightly older girls called Summer Secrets in the Amy Green series and she ALSO has a book for grown-ups out at the minute. This is her first early reader book, it's part of the O'Brien Panda series. The story goes that the school play is Noah's Ark and Emma wants to be a dog but the teacher says she has to be a penguin. Despite not initially wanting to be a penguin it turns out to be really good fun.

8-12:

Movie Diary of a Wimpy Kid - Jeff Kinney. THE hot book series at the minute. Movie coming soon, this book ties in with the movie. There are already 4 graphic novels in the Wimpy Kid series, 24 million books sold so far - this one just came on St Patricks Day. Like the title suggests 11 year old Greg Heffley is a wimpy kid in middle school in America, when he started school he thought he was going to be the coolest kid but everything backfired. This Movie diary has stills from the movie, storyboards, sketches, behind the scenes stuff and lots of photos.

8-12:

How to Break a Dragon's Heart - Cressida Cowell, most recent book of the Dragon series. Movie coming soon with Gerard Butler and America Ferrera from Ugly Betty. This is the eighth book in the How to Train Your Dragon series featuring Hiccup Horrendous Haddock the Third, the most amazing Viking ever and his dragon, Toothless.

He used to have a tooth but it fell out when he was biting Fireworm's bottom The books remember a time when Hiccup was just a little boy and trying to be a hero. Lots of great character names like Big Boobied Bertha and Dogsbreath the DuhBrain. The story goes that Hiccup's best friend Fishlegs is caught sending illegal love poems and the two boys have to perform The Impossible Task or face death.

Young Teens:

Distant Waves - Suzanne Weyn

A book for young teens that doesn't involve vampires! Shock horror! (Angels are actually the new vampires but this isn't a book about angels either.) It's historical fiction so as well as being a great book you're going to learn something.

It's about 5 American sisters at the start of the last century, they're the daughter of a clairvoyant, they all end up on the Titanic as it sets sail (so we know how it ends!) In the book there's love, there's drama, there's sisters' relationships, history, philosophy, science. You learn about some real people like the scientist Nicolas Tesla, Arthur Conan Doyle who wrote Sherlock Holmes, Harry Houdini and real people who were on the Titanic. Beautifully written, you really care about the sisters.


The next Junior Book club is on the Wed 14th April and we want children from schools all around the country to ring or email in to suggest their school as the subject of our April book club.

Books kindly supplied by Dubray books


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