How to get your gaming-mad kids reading at Christmas
Published on: 06 December 2017 Author: Taran Matharu
If you've got kids that are half as into gaming as I am, but you want to get them away from the screen for a while, why not try some of the following gaming-themed fiction and nonfiction? And of course, my own books The Novice, The Inquisition and The Battlemage are perfect for keen gamers aged 10+!
Pokemon: Ash's Big Challenge
Ash, a Pokemon trainer, has been sent to Valencia Island by Professor Oak on a very important mission, along with his favourite Pokemon, Pikachu. However, all will not be plain sailing, and Ash is going to meet some old friends - and enemies - along the way. This first book in the new Pokemon fiction series features many favourite figures from the game's epic world and is perfect for readers aged 6-9.
Dexter Green, illustrated by Jack Dash
Oxford University Press
While Max is playing on his favourite game on his tablet, he manages the impossible. With just one sneeze, Max manages to transport himself into the game itself, World of Slime.
There, he meets a slimy and gross cast of characters called the GOOZILLAS. This gang of slimeballs need Max's help. Their world is being take over by the obnoxiously sweet and fluffy Sicklies. But these cute critters aren't as sweet as they seem, and won't be easily defeated.
Dexter Green creates a fantastically disgusting story, effortlessly capturing a young boy's obsession with all things sticky, icky and video games. Jake Dash's colourful and cartoony illustrations are dotted throughout in full colour, making this perfect for young and reluctant readers.
Minecraft: The Island
This first official Minecraft novel has been written by the author of adult zombie classic World War Z, but it's very definitely a story for kids at older primary age or maybe slightly below. Much like survival mode in the game itself, our hero is stranded on a strange island and has to defend himself from the monsters that come out in the dark. Fans of the game will be impressed with the level of detail in the game - and it's a page-turning adventure, too.
Sterling Children's Books
Bex and her best friend Charlie are addicted to a new virtual reality game called Monsters Unleashed, which lets them catch virtual monsters with their phones. While searching through Charlie's grandad's attic, they accidentally flip the switch on a strange machine, and suddenly all Bex's monsters disappear from her app only to appear in the real world. Are the gamers' hunting skills up to the task of catching these vicious beasts in real life?
This fun novel taps into the recent Pokemon Go craze, and will appeal to gamers and sci-fi fans equally. Bex and Charlie are both likeable characters whose personalities develop and evolve as the book progresses. It is a fast-paced, heart-warming story that may even charm tech-fiends away from their screens.
Scott lives in a future world where children escape their lives of abject poverty by becoming guinea pigs for Virtual Kombat games. But what they don't know is that the best gamers must ultimately, unknowingly, face real life death.
Chris Bradford's Virtual Kombat has been rewritten for reluctant and dyslexic readers in this exciting and pacy quick read. With an attractive layout, large size print and an engaging story, this is a very appealing and accessible novel from the author of the popular Young Samurai series.
Guinness World Records: Gamer's Edition
Guinness World Records
Packed with the latest records, coolest stars and the biggest games, like Mario, Overwatch, FIFA, WWE and Rocket League the Guinness World Records Gamer's Edition is perfect for every gaming fan. The format is really entertaining, with stats, facts, inspirational tales, lightning-quick speed-runs and photo imagery – and has an introduction from YouTuber Dan TDM, whose Minecraft channel has been watched nearly 10 billion times. Be prepared to be regaled with facts such as who scored the fastest goal in FIFA or achieved the fastest speed-run of Final Fantasy XV – or, content yourself by looking at the world's biggest GameBoy.
Ali-A and Cavan Scott, illustrated by Aleksadar Sotirovski
Ali-A is attending the launch of Alien Liberator 2 and filming it for his YouTube channel, along with his dog Eevee and friend Claire, when something weird happens. Everyone at the launch starts turning green, like characters in the video game. Worse, the giant robot Tyrantors onstage come alive...
This definitely isn't part of the show, and inded it turns out that everyone at the game convention has been trapped inside Alien Liberator 2. Fortunately, Ali gets turned into the hero of the game and he and Eevee – who gets a doggy upgrade and can now talk – fight their way through the story to save the day.
Ali-A is a popular YouTube gamer and this is his first book, co-written with Cavan Scott, whose Star Wars graphic novels have been a huge hit with kids. In a luxurious hardback format with full colour, and brilliant graphic novel illustration by Aleksandar Sotirovski, this is a fast-paced, fun read with amazing visuals that gaming fans will love, as well as anyone else that enjoys a good yarn.
Game On! 2018: By Gamers for Gamers
The third edition of this gaming annual features information and statistics about all of the most popular games, tips and tricks for gamers, and interviews from gaming's biggest personalities - including game developers and pro gamers. This is more of a practical guide for gamers with loads of tips for unlocking the rarest trophies and achievements in different game worlds.
Get to know our Writer in Residence
Every six months, BookTrust appoints a new Writer in Residence to give us their own unique perspective on the world of children's books. Cerrie Burnell is best known for her work on CBeebies, and as author of 'Harper and the Sea of Secrets' among others.
Use the Bookfinder to find the perfect book for you, your family and friends.
Search our booklists
Looking for the best book for an older child? Take a look at our booklists. We may well have the answer - just see for yourself.