Take a look at these fascinating non-fiction titles suitable for all ages and learn more about the world this 2023 - no matter how old you are!
Gaia Goddess of Earth
Age rating: 6+
Imagine you made something that was so beautiful and powerful that everyone wanted to take it for themselves. And then you had to watch them destroy it. Would you fight for it?
Meet Gaia, the ancient Greek goddess who created the Earth and the universe that stretched beyond it. She raised trees from their roots to the sky, sent waterfalls tumbling over cliffs and created the tides that sloshed on the shore. She gifted her creation to animals and mortals, and watched as they made it their home.
But she also created a force she couldn't control: the ambition of gods. Gaia watched as the gods fought brutal wars and manipulated mortals such as Hercules and Achilles, disturbing peace on Earth. Storms raged, fires blazed and people, animals and plants suffered. Gaia begged the gods to look after her creation, but no one listened.
But Gaia never gave up fighting for a better world. This is her story.
Written and illustrated by two remarkable sisters, Imogen and Isabel Greenberg, this story is an exciting and action-packed adventure, with a poignant environmental message at the heart of it: the pursuit of power damages our natural world, and we all have to work together to protect it.
Darwin and Hooker
Age rating: 6+
On 24th November 1859, Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species was first published, selling out almost immediately. Describing the now well known theory that humans evolved through a process called natural selection, it became an instant classic and cemented Darwin as one of the greatest biologists of all time.
However, he couldn't have done it without the support, encouragement and advice from those who believed in him. None more so than Joseph Hooker, his friend, confidant and fellow collector, who supported and helped Darwin when he didn't dare ask anyone else. Hooker, too, had his own adventures and made his own discoveries - many of which not only aided Darwin, but went on to change what the world knew about plants. Becoming head of Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, he came to be one the world's most influential botanists.
Across many years, countless adventures and numerous letters, this captivating and wonderfully illustrated book tells the story of one of greatest friendships to happen to science. Publishing in partnership with Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, this book will show children how teamwork, curiosity, openness and trust can be the greatest tools a scientist will ever need. They might even help you change the world.
A Brief History of Time
Age rating: 13+
Was there a beginning of time? Could time run backwards? Is the universe infinite or does it have boundaries?
These are just some of the questions considered in the internationally acclaimed masterpiece by the world renowned physicist - generally considered to have been one of the world's greatest thinkers. It begins by reviewing the great theories of the cosmos from Newton to Einstein, before delving into the secrets which still lie at the heart of space and time, from the Big Bang to black holes, via spiral galaxies and strong theory. To this day A Brief History of Time remains a staple of the scientific canon, and its succinct and clear language continues to introduce millions to the universe and its wonders.
Black and British
Age rating: 12+
Winner of the Book of the Year, Children's Illustrated and Non-Fiction at The British Book Awards, 2021
Shortlisted for Waterstones Book of the Year 2020
A short, essential introduction to Black British history for readers of 12+ by award-winning historian and broadcaster David Olusoga.
When did Africans first come to Britain?
Who are the well-dressed black children in Georgian paintings?
Why did the American Civil War disrupt the Industrial Revolution?
These and many other questions are answered in this essential introduction to 1800 years of the Black British history: from the Roman Africans who guarded Hadrian's Wall right up to the present day.
This children's version of the bestseller Black and British: A Forgotten History is illustrated with maps, photos and portrait
A Really Short History of Nearly Everything
Age rating: 8+
The extraordinary Bill Bryson takes us from the Big Bang to the dawn of science in this book about basically everything.
Ever wondered how we got from nothing to something?
Or thought about how we can weigh the earth?
Or wanted to reach the edge of the universe?
Uncover the mysteries of time, space and life on earth in this extraordinary book - a journey from the centre of the planet to the dawn of the dinosaurs, and everything in between.
And discover our own incredible journey, from single cell to civilisation, including the brilliant (and sometimes very bizarre) scientists who helped us find out the how and why.
Adapted from A Short History of Nearly Everything, the ground-breaking bestseller, this book is stunningly illustrated throughout, and accessible for all ages
Horrible Histories: Rotten Rulers
Age rating: 9+
With Terry Deary's hilariously education series, learning history need not be boring anymore! In this book, readers can discover all the foul facts about the Rotten Rulers of history, including:
who gave the job of high priest to a donkey,
who choked to death while eating a crow
and who celebrated victory by eating his enemy's head?
With a bold, accessible new look and a heap of extra-horrible bits, these bestselling titles are sure to be a huge hit with kids.
The Kingfisher Space Encyclopedia
Age rating: 8+
The Kingfisher Space Encyclopedia is an amazing 160-page volume and the perfect guide to space and outer space for children. Packed with colourful illustrations, step-by-step sequences, and detailed photography to keep children engaged and entertained.
Arranged thematically into key areas, the concise text is clear, accurate, and perfectly pitched, making this an unbeatable resource for home and school. This comprehensive guide includes the launch of the James Webb Telescope, the reusable Falcon 9 and NASA's advance space suit design. Plus, a glossary and index are included along with a list of websites for further learning.
Outliers : The Story of Success
Age rating: 12+
From the bestselling author of Blink and The Tipping Point, Malcolm Gladwell's Outliers: The Story of Success overturns conventional wisdom about genius to show us what makes an ordinary person an extreme overachiever.
Why do some people achieve so much more than others? Can they lie so far out of the ordinary?
In this provocative and inspiring book, Malcolm Gladwell looks at everyone from rock stars to professional athletes, software billionaires to scientific geniuses, to show that the story of success is far more surprising, and far more fascinating, than we could ever have imagined.
He reveals that it's as much about where we're from and what we do, as who we are - and that no one, not even a genius, ever makes it alone.
Outliers will change the way you think about your own life story, and about what makes us all unique.
The Body : A Guide for Occupants
Age rating: 13+
'We spend our whole lives in one body and yet most of us have practically no idea how it works and what goes on inside it. The idea of the book is simply to try to understand the extraordinary contraption that is us.'
Bill Bryson sets off to explore the human body, how it functions and its remarkable ability to heal itself. Full of extraordinary facts and astonishing stories The Body: A Guide for Occupants is a brilliant, often very funny attempt to understand the miracle of our physical and neurological make up.
A wonderful successor to A Short History of Nearly Everything, this new book is an instant classic. It will have you marvelling at the form you occupy, and celebrating the genius of your existence, time and time again.