Anti-Bullying Week: All Different, All Equal
With Anti-Bullying Week just around the corner we wanted to take a moment to highlight some brilliant stories that deal with being different, whether that be personality, sexual orientation, social class, physical appearance, size, race, and or religion. Being different does not make anyone less equal and is, in fact, what makes us all human.
One of Anti-Bullying Week’s main aims this year is to not only encourage people to take action against bullying but to make sure that every child feels valued and included in school, that they are able to be themselves without fear of bullying. The following books all focus on characters who decided to do just that.
Freak the Mighty
This is the ultimate hymn to doing life YOUR way. Max is used to being called Stupid. Kevin is used to being called Dwarf. But together they’re Freak the Mighty, walking tall! As Freak the Mighty, can they rise above the bullies and stand tall? A hilarious, moving story of friendship and courage with powerful themes of family, bullying and grief.
The heart-twisting tale of being different. Auggie likes doing normal stuff like eating ice cream and playing on his Xbox. He feels normal – inside. But being normal doesn’t make little kids run away screaming. Born with a facial deformity, Auggie has been taught at home all his life. Now he’s going to school he’ll have to expose his face to the world. Will anyone see past it? A Powerful and intensely moving modern classic. With bonus chapters exploring Julian’s story of the bully to add a fascinating new dimension.
Two girls – bully and victim – are locked into battle, hurtling towards a knock-out climax. For Jess, school should be a refuge from her tough home life. Instead, thanks to bullying Kez, it’s a place of dread. Kez might be pretty and smart, but her life isn’t sweet. At least with every taunt, she can prove she’s better than Jess. Right…? A reminder that every black cloud might have a silver lining. A story that makes you take sides, then shows the danger of choosing them. Where do you stand? A searing tale of bullying from a writer with a powerful grasp of real-life issues. (13+)
Girl Heart Girl
An inspiring, uplifting and sympathetic story about sexuality and self-acceptance, Lucy Sutcliffe’s debut memoir is a personal and moving coming out story. Lucy’s writing about the incredible personal journey she’s been on; from never quite wanting the fairy-tale of Prince Charming to realising she was gay at the age of 14, through three years of self-denial to finally coming out to friends and family, to meeting her girlfriend Kaelyn.
The Lines We Cross
Michael is drawn to his new classmate Mina, but they’re on opposite sides of an issue that’s tearing their town apart. His parents are part of an anti-immigration group, while her family have fled their besieged home in Afghanistan. As tensions rise, lines are drawn and both must decide what they want their world to look like, no matter the cost. (13+)
I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Changed the World
Proof of the power one teen can have in fighting for what’s right. The true-life Katniss, battling evil with words and smarts. Malala was only ten when the Taliban took control of her Pakistani region. They banned women from the market. They said girls couldn’t go to school. But Malala was raised to speak up for her beliefs. So she blogged and spoke about girls’ rights to education. Then, in a revenge attack that shocked the world, she was shot in the head by a Taliban gunman. No one expected her to survive. But she did. And she’s making a better world for women right now. See what she’s done. Then follow her lead.