Funny stories

Expect grins, giggles and even guffaws with our selection of funny stories.

Funny stories for 6–7 year olds

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  1. The Legend of Spud Murphy by Eoin Colfer (Puffin)

    Spud Murphy, a battle-axe of a librarian, has forgotten that books are for enjoying. It takes a couple of children to sort things out.

  2. The Magic Finger by Roald Dahl (Puffin)

    Who wouldn’t want a magic finger that can change annoying things when necessary? Dahl is at his best here with horrible villains, a child hero, revenge, and, of course, plenty of humour.

  3. Stinkbomb and Ketchup-Face and the Badness of Badgers by John Dougherty, illustrated by David Tazzyman (Oxford University Press)

    This book is hilarious! Stinkbomb and his little sister, Ketchup-Face, journey to the king to get help in dealing with a thieving badger. You have to read it to get the madness. Works with five to ten year olds.

  4. Winnie the Witch by Valerie Thomas, illustrated by Korky Paul (Oxford University Press)

    Winnie has become a classic children’s character, famous for her orange and yellow striped stockings and her cat, Wilbur. There are lots of fantastic picture books and short readers to choose from; start with the original, Winnie the Witch.

  5. Horrid Henry by Francesca Simon, illustrated by Tony Ross (Orion)

    Horrid Henry and his brother, Perfect Peter, really make children laugh, and children want to read about them over and over again. Lots of stories to choose from, all resulting in giggles.

  6. Claude in the City by Alex T. Smith (Hodder)

    There’s a more subtle humour in this book and others in the series. Claude is brought to life through good stories and Smith’s elegant pictures.

12 classic picture books

Funny stories for 8–9 year-olds

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  1. Clarice Bean Spells Trouble by Lauren Child (Orchard)

    You may have met the ‘seriously real’ Clarice Bean in her picture books; here she’s at school in a longer story wondering why it is that opening your mouth can get you into so much trouble. She dreams, she plans, and she tries very hard to learn to spell—and she’s very, very funny.

  2. James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl, illustrated by Quentin Blake (Puffin)

    Children never tire of Dahl and he’s riding high at the moment as the king of children’s theatre. This title is very popular but there are many more to choose from.

  3. Squishy McFluff: The Invisible Cat! by Pip Jones, illustrated by Ella Okstad (Faber)

    This may seem a little young but the clever rhyming text is quite a challenge to read and a real pleasure when you manage it. And this age group still love pictures, even if they’re of an invisible cat.

  4. Cakes in Space by Philip Reeve, illustrated by Sarah McIntyre (Oxford University Press)

    Brilliant fun visually as well as verbally. A quirky adventure in space where all sorts of cakey fiends are a threat to Astra and her family as they head for their new home on a distant planet.

  5. Goth Girl and the Ghost of a Mouse by Chris Riddell (Macmillan)

    Ada Goth lives a lonely life in Ghastly-Gorm Hall, but everything changes when she meets a ghostly mouse called Ishmael—a friend at last and one who helps her solve a great mystery. Great illustrations add to the book’s huge appeal.

  6. The Story of Matthew Buzzington by Andy Stanton, illustrated by Ross Collins (Barrington Stoke)

    This publisher produces books with dyslexic children in mind, but they can be enjoyed by all children. This one, by the author of the popular Mr Gum series, is great. Matthew Buzzington has a special gift—he can turn himself into a fly—and you’ll never guess what his little sister can do.

Funny stories for 9–12 year-olds

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  1. How to Train Your Dragon by Cressida Cowell (Hodder Children's Books)

    Set in Viking times on the Isle of Berk, where young boys must catch a dragon or be exiled from the tribe. Can Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III manage to be a hero? His name tells a lot about him!

  2. The Misadventures of Clemency Wrigglesworth by Julia Lee (Oxford University Press)

    A wonderfully old-fashioned story of a homeless orphan girl. There are great characters here delivering plenty of humour, rip-roaring adventure, mystery, and a little sadness.

  3. Ribblestrop by Andy Mulligan (Simon & Schuster)

    You will never have read a school story like this one. It is outrageously funny, assaults political correctness and celebrates the human spirit—wonderful.

  4. Frank Einstein and the Antimatter Motor by Jon Scieszka, illustrated by Brian Biggs (Amulet)

    Frank is into science and how things work, and he loves inventing stuff. When a lightning storm brings his robots Klink and Klank to life, things really begin to happen. I didn’t know that science—and there’s a lot of it in this book—could be so funny.

  5. Gangsta Granny by David Walliams (HarperCollins)

    Ben discovers that his granny, who smells of cabbage, is an international jewel thief. He plots to steal the Crown Jewels, the only jewels she hasn’t stolen yet. May put your child off cabbage for life! As funny as only David Walliams can be.

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