This month sees the release of The Butterfly Club, which is - believe it or not - the 101st title from Jacqueline Wilson. She hasn't lost her touch - even 13-year-old Sophie, who is too old to be in the target audience any more really, couldn't resist picking it up for a nostalgic literary blast from the past and 9-year-old Juliette is waiting patiently to read it afterwards !
The story follows Tina, the most frail and lacking-in-confidence of triplets, who tends to rely on her sisters to look out for her. When she is asked to sit next to school bully Selma in class, it looks like a recipe for disaster, but as the two girls work together to create a butterfly garden, friendship blossoms in the most unlikely of places. It's a lovely story about looking beneath the surface and watching Tina evolve from vulnerable and helpless caterpillar to confident, free-flying butterfly is heartwarming.
Have a quick look at the trailer to get a feel for the book. The traditional illustrations by Nick Sharratt complement the text and, as usual, Jacqueline Wilson manages to create characters that teens and tweens can really relate to. Fans of Jacqueline's other books are in for a treat because a couple of the characters from a past story put in a cameo appearance - it's lovely to see them all grown up !
As well as receiving a copy of The Butterfly Club, we also received an issue of The Official Jacqueline Wilson Magazine to review, along with a Tracy Beaker tote bag which was a lovely surprise, as she is still the girls' favourite Jacqueline Wilson character of all time (and there have been many !)
The magazine promises to be full of inspirational and creative content designed to fire imaginations, as well as lots of useful and useable gifts. Our issue (number 83, on sale now) ties in with the release of the new Butterfly Club novel and it comes with 5 free gifts - a stationery set, pop-up pencil pot, notebook, page holders and surprise gift - we got funky magnetic Tracy Beaker bookmarks.
You also get lots of interesting content, such as the A-Z of The Butterfly Club, a guide to drawing the two heroines of the book, Tina and Selma, by the official illustrator Nick Sharratt and - something that is sure to get the hardcore Jacqueline Wilson fans very excited - you get the chance to ask her your questions and have them answered in the magazine.
It's not just reading and writing though - young readers are also encouraged to get creative and the project in this issue is - you guessed it ! - a beautiful butterfly garden. Each issue also has a giveaway - this month's is for butterfly goodies. There's a lot packed inside each magazine and the bright colours are really appealing to its target audience of 7-12 year old girls.
The monthly magazine costs £4.99 for one issue but you can get a much cheaper deal if you subscribe - 16 issues for the price of 10 plus free gifts/only £10 every 3 months by direct debit. For more details, check out the Official Jacqueline Wilson Magazine website.
Disclosure : We received the book and the magazine in order to write an honest review.