Kid’s Book Review: Arctic Star

Kid’s Book Review: Arctic Star

About the Book and Author

This thrilling naval adventure, inspired by the courageous Second World War experiences of real sailors, is written by one of our favourite authors, Tom Palmer. Inspired by true facts this exciting historical story for readers aged 9-12 years is published by Conkers

Winter 1943. Teenagers Frank, Joseph and Stephen are Royal Navy recruits on their first mission at sea during the Second World War. Their ship is part of an Arctic Convoy sailing to Russia to deliver supplies to their Soviet allies.

The convoys have to navigate treacherous waters, sailing through a narrow channel between the Arctic ice pack and German bases on the Norwegian coast. Faced with terrifying enemy attacks from both air and sea, as well as life-threatening cold and storms, will all three boys make it home again?



Arctic Star cover
Tom Palmer author

Tom Palmer is originally from Leeds and he still lives in West Yorkshire. He credits articles about football with getting him into reading as a child. He draws on this experience in his top-selling sports fiction for children, including the series Football Academy and Foul Play.

Tom has a background in reader development and today travels all over the UK with his immensely popular rugby and football reading games. To find out more about his hugely popular books and to access lots of useful resources visit his website.

You can read our Kid’s Review of the first book in this series of war-time inspired books set in the Lake District.


Book Review

The inclusion of real pictures at the end helps to reinforce that while Frank, Joseph and Stephen are characters the war was real and things like this did happen to real people.

This book is about three boys called Frank, Joseph and Stephen who are all on a ship during World War Two, 1943. They need to take good care of the ship because it is delivering supplies Russia for the war. Frank and Joseph are watchers they watch for U-boats and other battle ships while Stephen is an engine worker. They formed a strong friendship before tragedy struck the ship.

I would describe this book as a real page-turner with a tragic twist at the end.

The descriptions of the characters, ships and landscapes are very good and I felt like a magnetic force was pulling me into the story. The most engaging part for me was a description of a battle with the Scharnhorst because the ships work together to defeat their fear.

The inclusion of photographs of actual seamen at the end of the book helps to reinforce that while Frank, Joseph and Stephen are characters the war was real and things like this did happen to real people. I think this book was informative as well as being fun to read and I would recommend it to people 9 years old and over

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Alternatively, we suggest that you visit your local library and request to borrow a copy from a friendly librarian.

Whichever you choose we hope you enjoy being part of your unique reading community – happy reading everyone!


Reviewer Profile

Arthur junior blogger
  • Name: Arthur
  • Age: 9 years
  • Likes: Lego, maths and pepperoni pizza
  • Dislikes: eggs and mushrooms
  • Favourite Book: All of them!
  • Favourite Film: Paddington
  • Favourite Song: Everything is Awesome!!! by Tegan and Sara