What to Read After... Letters from the Lighthouse by Emma Carroll
Published on: 18 January 2024
Here are some suggestions that will equally enthrall young readers...
For more stories with historical settings
Emma Carroll has explored the Cuban missile crisis, Victorian circus shows, 17th-century witch hunts, World War II, 1920s Egypt, and many more areas of history. If the child in your life loves reading about past times, they will also enjoy these stories, which focus on little-known areas of history.
Safiyyah's War by Hiba Noor Khan shines a light on a real community of Muslims in Paris who helped Jewish people get to safety during World War II, while Diver's Daughter by Patrice Lawrence is based on the real story of an African diver in Tudor England. Meanwhile, When Secrets Set Sail by Sita Brahmachari tells the story of Indian ayahs brought to Britain by white English families, and then stranded.
For more books with strong female leads
Illustration: Setor Fiadzigbey
Emma Carroll's characters are always thrown into exciting situations, but they drive the action themselves, making brave decisions and forming strong friendships.
If that appeals to the readers you know, why not try The Storm Swimmer by Claire Weze, which has a very unusual friendship at its heart, or Nic Blake and the Remarkables by Angie Thomas, where Nic's best friend JP is funny and loyal. The bold Ramya in Like a Charm by Elle McNicoll is so fantastic, she has two books about her (Like a Curse is the second).
For more gripping adventures
Every Emma Carroll book is different, but they're all page turners! If you're looking to be gripped by another author's bibliography, try books by Phil Earle – When the Sky Falls is a modern classic – and Ross Montgomery, who has written historical stories too.
Jasbinder Bilan's books are wonderful adventures, often with a twist of magic realism, and Sophie Anderson's stories are always original and brilliantly written. If fantasy is appealing, then look for Abi Elphinstone, Tọlá Okogwu and Sinead O'Hart. And if realism is preferred, try Sharna Jackson and Cath Howe. We could go on! Check out our themed booklists for more inspiration.
For ideas from Emma herself!
Illustration: Dawn Cooper
We asked Emma to suggest some books to her fans, and she found it a struggle to narrow it down! But these few have her seal of approval:
- The Skylarks' War by Hilary McKay – perfect for wartime story lovers. The Swallows' Flight, its companion book, is equally superb.
- Sisters of the Lost Marsh by Lucy Strange – creepy, magical and full of intriguing family dynamics.
- Race to the Frozen North by Catherine Johnson, the true-to-life historical story of Matthew Henson, the first man to reach the North Pole.
- The Lizzie and Belle Mysteries: Drama and Danger by JT Williams – Georgian London, theatre, plucky heroines based on real-life characters – so much to love!
- The Lie Tree by Francis Hardinge – gothic perfection.
- My Swordhand is Singing by Marcus Sedgwick – the master of dark, suspenseful stories. This one takes us back to early Vampire lore and is terrific.
Those are some of our ideas (and some of Emma's suggestions) – but what would you recommend? Which brilliant stories do you love reading?
Let us know by getting in touch on social media @BookTrust using the hashtag #WhatToReadAfter!