Book Review: I’ll Be Home for Christmas (by lots of awesome YA authors)

* I have been given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review *

Publisher: Stripes Publishing

Pages: 384

Release Date: September 22nd 2016

Summary (from Goodreads):

The UK’s top Young Adult authors join together in this collection of new stories and poems on the theme of home. Contributors include: Tom Becker, Holly Bourne, Sita Brahmachari, Kevin Brooks, Melvin Burgess, Katy Cannon , Cat Clarke, Juno Dawson, Julie Mayhew, Non Pratt, Marcus Sedgwick, Lisa Williamson and Benjamin Zephaniah. GBP1 from the sale of every book will be donated to Crisis, the national homelessness charity. To find out more about Crisis, see


This was the perfect book for me to read at the moment as I’ve got super excited for Christmas, way too early this year! I’m a big Christmas fan normally but this year will be Little Moore’s first Christmas which is doubly exciting. Christmas has always been a family affair in my house and I know I’ve been lucky to always be surrounded by them at this special time of year.

For most of the people in this book, they’re not so lucky at Christmas, and it’s good to be reminded of that. The book is made up of short stories by some of the top UKYA authors, plus a competition winning entry. I normally struggle to remember all the stories in a collection like this when it comes to reviewing, so I made little notes as I went along, which I’ve put below, with a few additions. It’s a little bit different than a normal review but at least I can say something about each story.

Benjamin Zephaniah – Home and Away Poem made me very nostalgic at first, then sad. Very thought provoking.

Non Pratt – Ghosts of Christmas Past I really connected with this story. I wish I could revisit some of my old houses. I can still picture my first house at Christmas

Marcus Sedgwick – If Only in my Dreams That was a weird and creepy space story. I kind of wanted it to be longer, was very intrigued.

Cat Clarke – Family You Choose That was really uplifting in a sad kind of way. I love the idea of having a Christmas meal for people who don’t have other people to spend the day with.

Kevin Brooks – The Associates Mm, that one didn’t really do anything for me.

Holly Bourne – The Afterschool Club I love Holly Bourne’s writing. Can’t believe it ended that way, I want to read more.

Juno Dawson – Homo for Christmas A sweet story but I felt like I didn’t connect to the character much. I didn’t like the language but not sure if it’s because I’m too old or too southern.

Sita Brahmachari – Amir and George That was painfully sad. A real punch in the gut. Very topical at the moment too.

Tracy Darnton – The Letter I can see why that was the winner. Great voice. Look forward to seeing more from her.

Tom Becker – Claws Awesome little Christmas horror. A favourite so far.

Katy Cannon – Christmas, Take Two A sweet story, enjoyed it a lot.

Melvin Burgess – When Daddy Comes Home Interesting story but I’m not a fan of the monologue style.

Julie Mayhew – The Bluebird A very poetic fairytale

Lisa Williamson – Routes and Wings Sad but with an uplifting ending. Lovely to see more writing from Lisa Williamson.

This will be a perfect Christmas present, or great to read in the run up to Christmas too, to get you all excited. Plus £1 from each book will be donated to Crisis, the national homelessness charity, so you can’t really go wrong.


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