The Battle by Ashling Kwok. Illus. by Cara King

cover image

It is Edward's first day at knight school and to protect himself from the battles he expects to face, he puts on his full suit of armour. Sitting in the back of the Great Hall surrounded by unfriendly creatures, he is mortified when the king asks him to tell the others about himself. Even though at home he likes to fight giants and ogres, here at knight school he seems to be surrounded by them and he is not so brave. And when one sits beside him on the bench as he starts to eat his lunch, things are r-e-a-l-l-y scary...

It is that time of the year again when the prospect of Big School is looming closer and closer and some of our little ones are getting really apprehensive. There is a mixture of nerves that can become overwhelming. So stories like these that not only show that fears are shared but they can be overcome are welcome as they offer such reassurance. Cleverly illustrated showing the ogres and dragons as ordinary boys and girls and the concept of the physical armour holding him back in the same way that mental armour does, Edward comes to some new understandings and discovers this school-thing isn't as frightening after all.

This is one to add to your collection to share to give an added dose of confidence and show that even the bravest can feel nervous.

Themes: Starting school, Fear.

Barbara Braxton