The (incomplete) Lit in Colour book list: Years 3-4

Have a look at some titles in the 2021 and 2022 lists for years 3-4.

The 2021 and 2022 lists contain titles on topics including activism, feminism, mental health and more. The 2021 list can be downloaded here, the 2022 list can be downloaded here, and the 2023 list can be downloaded here, and you can look through a selection of titles from all the lists below.

But all the women are too busy to answer Noor’s questions. All, that is, except her mum.

Not Now, Noor! is a warm-hearted introduction to the concept of the hijab, and a loving celebration of Muslim women.

Themes/topics: Islam, Religion, Feminism, Family

She is the education, outreach and diversity officer for the Royal Astronomical Society.

Themes/topics: Science, Education

When she learns her library is closing, she’s heartbroken. But she soon decides to use what she’s learnt from those she’s read about, and speaks up to save the day.

This is an empowering picture book about stepping up and speaking out for what matters to you, as well as being a love letter to libraries and the power of reading.

Themes/topics: Activism, Self-belief, Community, Reading

But then they are asked to join the Secret Beast Club, a centuries-old secret group that protects mythological creatures. Leaving their comfort zones, Aisha and Jayden discover that real magic could be closer than they think.

In the second book in the series, The Dragons of Emerald Yard, Aisha and Jayden are officially members of the Secret Beast Club, and preparing for their second mission… tracking down a dragon who is on the loose in Birmingham, before a dragon hunter finds it.

A third book, The Mer-People of Crystal Pier, will be released in 2024.

Themes/topics: Adventure, Friendship, Magic

Lit in Colour

2023 list

The 3rd (incomplete) Lit in Colour primary book list.


My Skin, Your Skin by Laura Henry-Allain MBE, Onyinye Iwu (illustrator)

My Skin, Your Skin is a book designed to encourage children and adults to have meaningful discussions about race and anti-racism, as well as to empower children to be the best versions of themselves.

It contains explanations on key words and concepts written in child-friendly, accessible language, with relatable examples, and supports
children aged four and up with building an antiracist stance from an early age.

Laura Henry-Allain is an early years expert and children’s media creator, while Onyinye Iwu is a trained secondary school teacher and freelance

Themes/topics: Anti-racism, Activism

Stories for South Asian Supergirls by Raj Kaur Khaira et al.

This anthology is in the vein of books like Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls, but with a focus on South Asian women.

It covers the inspirational stories of 50 women, including actor and writer Mindy Kaling, business leaders Indra Nooyi, Anjali Sud and Ruchi Sanghvi, and British Muslim spy, Noor Inayat Khan.

Each page-long profile is paired with an illustration from one of 10 South Asian artists.

The Guardian said: “This call to courage celebrates warrior queens of Bangladeshi, Indian, Nepalese and Pakistani heritage. Inevitably, in doing
so, it highlights a morass of injustice – sexism, homophobia, the abuse of power – but in matterof-fact language designed to highlight obstacles

Themes/topics: Feminism, Inspiration

Books by other publishers

My Story: Princess Sophia Duleep Singh by Sufiya Ahmed

Published by Scholastic

Sophia Duleep Singh grew up in the palace of Queen Victoria, and was a princess and prominent suffragist. She campaigned for the women’s right
to vote, helping to finance the suffrage movement, and even refused to pay her taxes.

In this book, Sufiya Ahmed tells Sophia’s story in an accessible way for young children, introducing them to a figure not much spoken about in British history.

Themes/topics: British history, Colonialism, Feminism, Suffrage

Anisha, Accidental Detective series by Serena Patel, Emma McCann (illustrator)

Published by Usborne

This series spans six books, all following Anisha as she investigates various mysterious goings-in in the lives of her friends, family and peers.

In the first book, Anisha’s super-dramatic Aunty Bindi is getting married tomorrow and is having a mega meltdown. Things will only get worse if she
discovers that Anisha has found a ransom note, pushed through the letter box, saying Uncle Tony, Bindi’s husband-to-be, has been kidnapped. The
note says that Uncle Tony will only be freed if the wedding is cancelled. It’s up to Anisha to become a detective and save the wedding, and the day.

The other books in the series are School’s Cancelled, Granny Trouble, Show Stoppers, Holiday Adventure, and Fright Night.

Themes/topics: Mystery, Adventure, Friendship, Family, Detective story

Cover of Leila Rasheed's Empire's End: A Roman Story

Empire's End: A Roman Story by Leila Rasheed

Published by Scholastic

This book focuses on Camilla, a young North African girl who travels with her mother and father from Leptis Magna to Rome in 207 AD. Just months later, Leila and her family are sent to Britannica, where tragedy strikes, leaving Camilla alone  to navigate the world of the Empress while her father travels north.
Based on real historical events, this is a look at a largely untold story in British history. Rasheed is a children’s and YA author, and her first book Chips, Beans and Limousines won a Red House Read of the Year award.

Topics/themes: British history, adventure, politics

Cover of The Last Last Day of Summer

The Last Last-day-of-summer by Lamar Giles and Dapo Adeola

Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company

These books feature Otto and Sheed, cousins, mischief makers and local sleuths in their zany town in Virginia, America.

In The Last Last-Day-of-Summer, Otto and Sheed are bickering when a mysterious man appears with a camera that literally freezes time. With the help of some stranger people and even stranger creatures Otto and Sheed will have to put aside their differences to save their town before time stops for good.

The pair’s second adventure, The Last Mirror on the Left, takes place a year later. Unlike the majority of their town, Missus Nedraw of the Rorrim Mirror Emporium remembers the time freeze from The Last Last-Day-of-Summer, and how Otto and Sheed took her mirrors without permission in order to fix their mess. She’s willing to overlook their misdeeds if they help her capture one of her worst prisoners, who has escaped.

Giles is an award-winning American author of young adult novels and short stories, while Adeola is a rising British illustration talent, whose other books include the Look Up! series created with Nathan Bryon.

Topics/themes: Adventure, friendship, mystery

An engineer like me cover

An Engineer Like Me by Dr Shini Somara & Nadja Sarell

Published by Hachette Children's

This empowering illustrated story introduces children to the worlds of engineering and problem-solving through the character of Zara. Curious about everything, Zara travels around the city with her gran, marvelling at how planes stay up and roller coasters do loop-the-loops. As she goes on her journey, Zara learns about brilliant engineers who have shaped the world around her, and who inspire her to come up with her own inventions.

Engineer and TV presenter Somara has also included pages encouraging children to try making the perfect paper aeroplane and drop an eye safely from a height.

Topics/themes: STEM, women in STEM

Covers of Little Badman, Funky Chickens, Kiki's Delivery Service and Tall Story

Download the 2021 book list for primary schools here

Download the 2022 book list for primary schools here

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