Books for Schools
Every Christian teacher would love to have a stock of exciting Christian books for their students to read, but the reality is, it’s not easy finding them.
We produce highly recommended, fun books for schools loved by children up and down the country, with biblical themes, for you to share with your students.
Dernier books make excellent:
- Class readers
- Gifts and Prizes
- Resources for chaplains to share as the need arises.
Christian values are woven into the stories, so teachers can use them with confidence, knowing they are sharing their faith in a respectful way, allowing students to consider issues of faith for themselves.
Pam Daunton, primary school teacher and author of The Dove Stone, admits that it’s not always appropriate to suggest to students that they pray. But she goes on to say,
“When I go into schools to talk about my writing, I talk about how the characters in The Dove Stone learn to pray when they’re facing difficulties in life.”
In this way, students make the connections for themselves.
We provide FREE downloadable Discussion Questions for all our titles, including The Dove Stone, to help you deliver curriculum requirements and engage children with the issues raised in the stories.
Sign up here to receive downloadable pdf Discussion Questions for all our current titles, regular email news and 30% off your first order for your school.
- Help church schools demonstrate their distinctive Christian character (helping with school inspections)
- Present Christian themes to students in an engaging, non-threatening manner
- Help pupils reflect on how the Christian faith might work out in practice in their own lives
- Have engaging characters, exciting plots and are great reads!
- Are also available in large print and Braille versions for pupils with sight loss*
All our newer titles are dyslexia friendly.
The easy readers have black and white illustrations. This is Claire, who has moved to the UK from Hong Kong, and is finding the winter chilly!
Reviews From Children:
“This is the best book I’ve ever read.” (We’ve had quite a few of these!)
“It was epic . . . it helped me understand what life was like as a child in WW1. It reminded me that God is interested in helping us through tough times.”
“When I read it, it makes me forget my worries and problems because I get into the book so much. Anyone would enjoy it.”
“Cool, interesting, exciting; it was a great book! I liked it that the children were detectives.”
“Another brilliant adventure!“
“I liked this book very much. I think that that overall message from this book is that people from different countries can be friends, that we are all equal and that God does answer prayers.”
Reviews From Parents And Teachers:
“I have been a passionate story-teller for much of my adult life, and not least as a teacher and then a Headteacher taking assemblies. I was always on the look out for compelling stories – and especially ones with a sensitive, appropriate and clear (and non ‘cringy’) Gospel message! Books by Dernier Publishing absolutely fit this bill! Janet Wilson, their founder, has spoken at two TISCA regional meetings and I can certainly endorse Dernier’s wide range of books across the age range (6+ to young adults) – and commend choosing such books both for assemblies and for speech day and end-of-year prizes.“Alastair Reid, General Secretary of TISCA (The Independent Schools Christian Alliance)
“The Treasure Hunt will be very good for our juniors to read. It is an exciting story but also introduces the idea of modern day slavery. The author has successfully woven the thread of prayer throughout the story, giving children a ‘window’ on the reality of living with the Lord day by day.”
“I use the book for further discussion and learning. We have a map of the world on a wall. After each chapter we look for the country in Africa mentioned in the chapter. Then we go on the Internet and look for images and videos of other things mentioned, for example what mangroves look like, oysters, traditional dress in Gambia, village life in Uganda, crocodiles and their nests etc.”
“One of my boys was very impressed with the part where the kids killed the snake. He also learned from that book that all children around the world have dreams about the future and he was touched by the hardships and challenges they face.”
“Schools have to show they are promoting diversity and giving opportunities for moral and spiritual development so the books are great for both of these.”
Excellent for children newly arrived from Hong Kong/refugees, and to develop compassion for new arrivals.
Clare has moved house with her family, from China to England, and doesn’t know anyone. At first she is lonely, and is nervous about making friends. She prays for a cat, and Oliver turns up, but whose cat is he? Fun, easy reader, with ten chapters. Christian content: Clare and her family go to church and they pray together at meal times.
Themes: New home/country, loneliness, friendship, prayer.
A popular book for introducing the topic of prayer.
Themes: trust, prayer, faithfulness, caring.
Luke is worried about the stray dog in the park. He wants to look after it. It’s not as easy as he thought, but he learns to trust God, as the dog gradually learns to trust him. Another lovely story for 6-8s, with dyslexia friendly text, and line illustrations. Christian content: Luke and his mum are Christians, as is their Polish neighbour, Mr Bonzovi.
For Readers 8-11
The Dove Stone
Brilliant for use as a class reader. Join Doran, Nico, Rhiannon and Wolf on this action-packed adventure about friendship, hatred, facing fears and finding faith, set in post-Roman Britain. Christian content: Elements of the good news of Jesus are woven gently into the story, which also covers many other issues children face.
Themes: prayer, faith, friendship, bullying. Read more here.
“I read The Dove Stone in one sitting and couldn’t put it down. The short chapters and pace mean this would be great for a whole class read. It would also be a lovely gift for a child exploring their own faith. The setting in the post Roman era adds interest and there is some wonderful description and language to add effect. This gentle approach to introducing children to Christianity is both respectful and clear in its message. Good triumphing over evil is a theme throughout the book, whilst tacking the important theme of bullying makes it relevant for all children today.”Claire Greenway, Headteacher
Perfect for sensitive children, those who enjoy thoughtful books and those who struggle with anxiety. Facing her fears one by one, Abi opens her life to the light and finds a freedom she never thought possible. A beautiful story, full of hope. Christian content: Abi has no church or religious background, but wants to pray when her dad fails to come home from a walk in the forest. Her eyes are gradually opened to a new spiritual reality, when talking to a friend who understands that true light shines, even in the deepest darkness. We only see at the very end, very gently, that Jesus is the light. Read more here.
Themes: anxiety, fear, panic attacks, night terrors, peace, safety, taking risks, friendship, family, prayer, hope.
I Want to Be an Airline Pilot
Perfect for children who love reading about other cultures. Through a series of adventures, Shema, an eight-year-old Rwandan goatherd from a child-led family discovers that he has a Father in heaven who cares for him. You can read more here. Christian content: A victorious, heart-warming story of the grace of God in difficult circumstances.
Themes: education, inequality, opportunity, fear, child-led families, hope, prayer.
The thrilling sequel to I want to be an Airline Pilot, but also stand alone. Shema and his friends have many exciting and dangerous challenges to face. A gentle introduction to the issue of child domestic slavery. Christian content: Excellent, clear Christian content, woven through the pages of this exciting book. You can read more here.
Themes: new start, coercion, deception, lies, honesty, domestic slavery, caring, celebration.
Under the Tamarind Tree
Perfect for children struggling with a change in their life, and to learn about living in a new culture from a child’s perspective. The third book in the “Rwanda” series. Timo and Joshua don’t want to go and live in rural Rwanda, soon make new friends and learn that God knows best. Christian content: Doctors from a medical mission start a clinic – the children are from all different races and culutures, but learn they are all God’s children, and He know best. You can read more here.
Themes: racial harmony, equity, caring, prayer, health.
The Treasure Hunt
Great for kids who love exciting mystery stories. Four Christian friends go on a treasure hunt with the church youth club, but while looking for clues they fall into another adventure. A gentle introduction to people trafficking, and shows what it means to be a Christian. Christian content: The children are Christians, and when they get into tight spots, they pray together. You can read more here.
Themes: adventure, safety, trafficking, working together, prayer, action.
Mystery in the Snow
Not long after solving their first mystery (The Treasure Hunt), Debbie, Ravi, Lance and Joel find themselves with another problem; Ravi’s shed has been burgled. Join the Christian friends as they find answers in unexpected places. Stands alone. Christian content: There’s no real messsage, other than it’s good to be a Christian! You can read more here.
Themes: adventure, caring, working together, deception, theft, second chances.
The Birthday Shoes
Emily Jane goes on a series of adventures in Africa wearing her magic shoes, making friends and some exciting discoveries about God and crocodiles along the way! Christian content: Emily Jane realises by the end of the book that, although her parents are Christian, she needs to ask Jesus into her own life, and does this as part of the story. Girls have come to faith after reading this book. You can read more here.
Themes: African adventure, school work, disability, equality, gratitude, faith.
A Pennyworth Of Peppermints
A spy story set in WW1. Two lads find a message in a bottle; what does it mean? With the help of Sidney’s sister, they go on an adventure to find out. Exciting story with fascinating background to what life was like for children in the Great War. Christian content: Ben’s family are Christian, and through all the troubles, their faith helps them through. You can read more here.
Themes: war, fear, poverty, working together, prayer, enemies.
For Readers 10-14
A New Me
Jess has many challenges in her life, but when she moves house and joins a church youth club, she begins to find a new way to live. Christian content: At the beginning of the story Jess has no notion of God, but finds Jesus at a youth camp. You can read more here.
Themes: alcohol abuse, new start, hope, bullying, family, care for animals.
The Beech Bank Girls Series
Brilliant for helping girls make good life choices.
These four fun stories are written from the viewpoint of six friends who have lots of fun together, but also face all sorts of troubles and disasters! Christian content: The girls are all determined to follow God, although that goes up and down a bit! You can read more here.
Themes: friendship, church, belonging, body image, step-families, bereavement, caring, online safety.
The Only Way
When a mysterious, disaffected teenager meets the beautiful and mysterious Lily, he discovers a new way to live. A brilliantly written, fast-moving novel, with a gripping story. There are allegorical features in this novel on many levels, making it an excellent choice for a class reader. Christian content: There’s lots to tease out, but the message is subtle. You can read more here.
Themes: racial hatred, mystery, family, bullying, fostering, running away, meaning of life, spirituality.
A gripping drama. London has been bombed by terrorists and three teens have to make their way to safety – but is anywhere safe now? Christian content: Maria, the protagonist, is not a Christian, and the book is written from her point of view. Arthur is a Christian, which makes a difference to the way he looks at their situation. A good book for discussion of ethics. You can read more here.
Themes: terrorism, fear, flight, danger, prayer.
Revenge of the Flying Carpet
Paul hates his sister, and when he finds a magic carpet in his gran’s loft, he plans revenge… but gets a lot more than he bargained for. Thrilling story, excellent for children who feel trapped and hopeless, or who balk at the unfairness in the world. Christian content: Strong Christian message, with What is a Christian? feature at the end of the book, including a prayer for readers to use if they wish. You can read more here.
Themes: revenge, faith, mercy, dysfunctional family, hope, forgiveness.
I haven’t read much Christian fiction since my youth when the C S Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia reigned supreme. However, I would say that J M Evans’ Revenge of the Flying Carpet is in the same league as Lewis. Flying on a magic carpet, twins Paul and Trinity have lots of mini adventures. Along the way, they powerfully and beautifully grapple with the riches of God’s grace and consider how important their human relationships, image, and ability to forgive others are. Working as a school chaplain, I could easily see this being enjoyed by and helpful to teenagers exploring the Christian faith alongside those seeking to live for Christ.”
Revd George Beverly
Chaplain, History and Philosophy teacher at King’s Bruton
For Readers 13+
Rebecca and Jade: Choices
A brilliantly written, sensitive story about two teenage girls, and the choices they make.
Rebecca and Jade have become friends, despite their different backgrounds. When one
of them discovers she is pregnant, both are faced with choices that could affect their own lives, and those of others.
After a video showing how a baby grows in the womb, new choices open up, but Rebecca and Jade don’t agree on the way forward.
Themes: fostering, friendship, relationships, teen pregnancy, abortion, choices.
Dsytopian fiction for teens. Chella has lived all her life in Area IF208. Religion is banned, so Chella is used to keeping her Christian faith a secret. But when her best friend disappears and her fiancé is arrested, a new chapter of her life begins. Christian content: Chella is a Christian living in a world where religion is persecuted.
Themes: coercive relationships, persecution, danger, choices, consequences, forgiveness, working together.
Order the book here.
The City Kid
Gritty story for young adults. John wants to live the high life in the city, but when he gets involved in corruption and his life falls apart, he finds new life. Christian content: This is a ‘prodigal son’ style story, with John surrendering his life to Christ at the end of the book. Order this book here.
Themes: corruption, suicide ideation, finances, choices/decisions/consequences.
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In a speech entitled The Importance of Storytelling, The Rt Hon Nick Gibb, MP, said, “Would the teachings of the Bible have been so powerful had Jesus never told the story of the Good Samaritan, but simply instructed his followers to care for all humankind? … Humans are hard-wired to remember stories, to the point that psychologists have referred to stories as ‘psychologically privileged’ in the human mind.”
The time to act is now.
Don’t let your students miss out. A book can change a life in an instant… or it can be a vital link in a chain, on a journey of faith.