Best kids' books by best-selling adult authors
When you find an author you love you want to share your discovery with everyone – including the next generation! Thankfully lots of the world's best-selling adult authors have also written junior fiction so you can get the kids hooked on John Grisham or Jenny Colgan sooner rather than later!
Up in the Tree by Margaret Atwood(£7.99, Bloomsbury)
The Handmaid's Tale author wrote this playful, rhyming picture book for preschool children in 1978. A simple message about the importance of choice and freedom is communicated through the story of two children who make their home up in the branches of a tree. When the ladder they rely on to get back to the ground is destroyed, some of their freedom disappears, too – until they have an ingenious idea...
Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life by James Patterson(£6.99, Arrow)
One of the biggest-selling writers of all time, James Patterson is the author of hugely popular series like the Alex Cross novels and Maximum Ride. A partner of the National Literacy Trust, he is passionate about encouraging both adults and children to read and his "middle grade" illustrated books about Rafe Khatchadorian's everyday school life are laugh-out-loud-funny and perfect for encouraging reluctant readers.
Theodore Boone by John Grisham(£7.99, Hodder)
John Grisham has sold over 275 million books worldwide, and his legal thrillers aren't just for adults. Thirteen year old Theodore Boone dreams of becoming a great lawyer and knows every judge, policeman and court clerk in his small town. When he's dragged into the middle of a sensational murder trial, only Theo can make sure justice is done – but can this half-boy, half-lawyer pull it off? Pacy, page-turning reading.
Polly and the Puffin by Jenny Colgan(£5.99, Little, Brown)
Fantastic, fully-illustrated 'early reader' stories, the Polly and the Penguin books will be pored over again and again by newly confident independent readers. Polly and her rescued puffling Neil live by the sea and have everyday adventures together, with recipes, jokes, activities and fun facts at the end of each book to complement the story. Fans of Jenny Colgan's best-selling romantic novels for adults will recognise puffin Neil from the Beach Street Bakery books.
The Wee Free Men: A Tiffany Aching Novel (Discworld Novels) by Terry Pratchett(£7.99, Corgi Childrens)
Introduce children to the work of Sir Terry Pratchett, the creator of the global bestselling Discworld series, with the first book in the Tiffany Aching Series. We meet Tiffany at age 9 – she wants to be a witch when she grows up, and she's resourceful and determined enough to get the pointy hat she craves. But first there's a battle to fight (and a horde of unrule fairies to deal with)... Funny, engaging and a great entry book into the comic fantasy universe of Discworld.
Charlie the Choo-Choo by Stephen King (writing as Beryl Evans)(£12.99, Hachette)
Best-selling horror writer Stephen King's book for children is a timeless, touching story – not a terrifying clown in sight! Engineer Bob has a secret: his train is alive! Their friendship highlights the importance of teamwork, loyalty and hard work and this book is a great addition to the bookshelf of any young train enthusiast (adult King fans will recognise Charlie the Choo-Choo from The Dark Tower).
The Rover Adventures by Roddy Doyle(£7.99, Scholastic)
No grown-ups will turn down the chance to read some Roddy Doyle out loud and the bonkers, entertaining adventures of Rover the wonder-dog and the eccentric but lovable Mack family will become a firm favourite for bedtime. Expect silliness and a whole lot of poo!
Chase by Linwood Barclay(£6.99, Orion Children's Books)
New York Times best-selling author Linwood Barclay is known for crime thrillers packed with suspense, plot twists and wit, and his first kids' novel wouldn't disappoint his fans. Chipper is a special dog, part of a top-secret, multi-million dollar spy technology experiment. When he escapes from the compound where he was created he crosses paths with twelve-year-old orphan Jeff Conway, and soon dog and boy find themselves tangled up in the most dangerous game of chase imaginable...
My Granny is a Pirate by Val McDermid(£6.99, Orchard Books)
My granny is a pirate!
She's sailed the seven seas.
She captured many pirate ships
But was always home for tea.
Best-selling crime novelist Val McDermid's first children's book is a rhyming, witty and wonderful joy to read. Find out about the exploits of a swashbuckling gran and her dog, Jolly Roger – from singing sea shanties to fighting off ghosties, this fierce and funny pirate makes a big impression.