No matter how old you are, a really good book will always be a suitcase essential.

While some of us research our holiday reads weeks in advance, for others, a quick dash around the Heathrow branch of WHSmith or the Kindle store is the order of the day.

So if you’re hopping off on a last minute beach holiday or need something to keep the kids occupied at the airport, here are some tried and tested reads from this summer to take with you.

holiday books for children

Books for Children

Ages: 1-7

  • Dave by Sue Hendra

This children’s book follows the adventures of a fat cat named Dave who gets stuck in his cat flap. A true page turner for the little ones, they’ll be itching to find out how he frees himself.

Ages: 4-9

  • The Beginner’s Guide to Running Away From Home by Jennifer Larue Huget

This light-hearted story is the ideal start for a mini traveller. A survival guide for anyone who has ever announced their intention to run away, this book will ultimately make kids realise the brilliance of staying at home.

Ages: 6-12

  • 50 Things to do before you’re 11 ¾ by National Trust

Suitable for both boys and girls, this book provides a check list of outdoor activities for kids to tick off before they’re 12 (well, 11 ¾ to be exact). From climbing a tree to cooking on an open campfire, the guide makes for the perfect bucket list to keep them busy on holiday.

Ages: 10+

  • After Iris by Natasha Farrant

An entertaining story centred around a young girl named Blue, the book is a compilation of video transcripts and diary entries that capture Blue’s dysfunctional relationship with her wacky, boho family. Keep track of your page by downloading our holiday bookmark here.


good holiday reads for adults


  • Little Green by Walter Mosley

The newest addition to Mosley’s Easy Rawlin’s mystery series, Little Green maintains the fast-paced suspense of the author’s previous 11 books.

  • Almost English by Charlotte Mendelson

If you thought your family was crazy, just wait until you read about the characters’ relationships in this novel – it’s all about the issues facing a foreign pupil trying to fit in at a traditional public school in England.

  • The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson

Although the title might be a bit of a giveaway, this Swedish sensation of a novel offers a quick, quirky read with plenty of comic relief to enjoy in the sun.

  • The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling

Rowling’s first novel to be published post-Harry Potter, this tragicomedy is also her first book geared towards adults. Set in rural England, this story makes for a swift, summer read.

What did you read this summer?

 Images:,  jepoirrier via Flickr