Toppsta - Childrens Books – Reviews

Malorie Blackman

  • 5 stars across 89 books
    Malorie Blackman is one of the UK’s most influential authors for young people. From 2013-2015, she was the eighth Children’s Laureate and she has been awarded an OBE as well as several literary awards. The exciting yet relatable plots that feature in many of her books have millions of readers of all ages hooked on her stories.
    Blackman started out life as a systems programmer following a degree in Computer Science and switched to writing aged 28. Since the publication of her first book in 1990, she has written over sixty books, as well as several TV episodes including for the latest series of Dr. Who, starring Jodie Whittaker. In addition to her own writing, Blackman also did a lot of work during her time as Children’s Laureate to inspire young people to write. She was instrumental in setting up the first YALC (Young Adult Literature Convention) and ran a nationwide creative writing competition for teens.
    Blackamn is probably best known for her series for young adults Noughts and Crosses. Published in 2001, Noughts and Crosses was critically acclaimed and won the Red House Children’s Award. The dystopian novel is set in an alternate reality where African people who have made Europeans their slaves, turning traditional racial prejudice on its head. The story follows star-crossed lovers Callum and Sephy: two young people divided by their colour in the racist society they live in, but who cannot live without each other. Blackman went on to write three more books in the series, with a highly anticipated fifth book – Crossfire -  due out this year. The series caught the imagination of young people everywhere and quickly became a bestseller. It is currently running on the West End stage and is being adapted into a BBC series coming later this year starring Stormzy, amongst others, who describes himself as “a diehard fan of Malorie's novels”. Although social issues run throughout many of Blackman’s book, this was the first time she had written about racism, inspired by personal experiences, such as needing a plaster one day and realising that they are pink so that they don’t show on white skin. 
    Malorie Blackman’s thought-provoking books are often studied or recommended at school. She is not afraid to write about the big issues that young people can face – we love Boys Don’t Cry from 2010, a tale about teenage fatherhood and Pig-Heart Boy from 2004, the moving story of a boy waiting for a heart transplant, which many people know from its BAFTA winning TV adaptation.
    Whatever your age, she has a book for you. Try picture book Jessica Strange for the very young,  Hacker for kids aged 9-12 and adults and teenagers should definitely start the Noughts and Crosses series before it comes to TV. 


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    6th February 2020

    Noughts & Crosses

    ** NOW A MAJOR NEW BBC TV SERIES - this edition contains an exclusive Q&A with lead actor Paterson Joseph** '... More

    (26 reviews)
    5th February 2004

    Pig-Heart Boy

    You're thirteen. All you want is a normal life. But most normal kids don't need heart transplants. So there's this ... More

    (11 reviews)
    28th February 2019

    Nought Forever: World Book Day 2019

    A powerful new Noughts & Crosses story from legendary author Malorie Blackman, written for World Book Day 2019 ... More

    (9 reviews)
    15th January 2019

    Ellie and the Cat

    Ellie is the rudest, most spoilt child her grandma has ever met and it's time that she learnt a lesson! So with a litt... More

    (6 reviews)
    5th February 2004


    You're the new girl in school. You're just trying to fit in - and it's not working. Then someone accuses you of theft,... More

    (5 reviews)
    3rd February 2015

    Robot Girl

    A futuristic drama full of suspense from the UK Children's Laureate 2013-2015. Claire is keen to find out what her dad h... More

    (5 reviews)
    6th April 2017

    Knife Edge

    'The Noughts & Crosses series are still my favourite books of all time and showed me just how amazing story-tell... More

    (5 reviews)
    1st September 2005

    Cloud Busting: Puffin Poetry

    Despite his Mum's insistence, Sam doesn't want to be friends with Davey, he thinks Davey's a first class, grade A, top o... More

    (4 reviews)
    1st March 1995

    Operation Gadgetman!

    Beans calls her dad 'Gadgetman' because of the weird and wonderful gadgets he comes up with - everything from exploding ... More

    (4 reviews)
    8th August 2019


    Nominated for the Costa Children's Book Award 'The Noughts & Crosses series are still my favourite books ... More

    (3 reviews)
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