Free Reads

Welcome! I have lots of great ways to kick-start your start reading, so click on the covers below to try a first chapters of any of my books or scroll down for exclusive on-line stories.  Suitable for whiteboard projection for WCR (Whole Class Reading).


You can also watch free new videos every day introducing and reading from all my books on my YouTube channel here.

“Tom Palmer is a true reading hero and has been responsible for motivating many thousands of young people to get into books” Booktrust

Try Angel of Grasmere here …

Try Resist here

Click the covers and try more first chapters:



Defenders series


Football Academy

Boys United cover Striking Out cover The Real Thing cover Reading the Game cover  Free Kick cover Captain Fantastic cover

Foul Play

 foul play 130 DeadBall 130  offside 130 Killer pass less spine 130 owngoal 130

Wings series

Wings-Flyboy-03  Wings-Spitfire-03  Wings-Typhoon-02

Rugby Academy

 Combat Zone Surface to air Dead Locked  trials

The Squad

Black Op cover  White Fear cover

Barrington Stoke

Ghost Stadium cover  Scrum! cover   

FREE Kindle books


Tom Palmer author Danger AcademyFree kindle book for childrenAnd FREE to Kindle Unlimited Subscribers, (RRP 99p) :

Football Academy : Teamwork   

Foul Play : The Danger Academy      

Get the books here

Spitfire Fund Summer 2020

I have written a five-part free story to commemorate the 80th anniversary of the Battle of Britain with the RAF Museum (as their Children’s Writer in Residence). Download from their website here.

The Scout

Read here a Year 3-4 short story about how Ronan and Connor from the Football Academy series came to join Premier League United.

Find out more about the National Literacy Trust.

The Character Strikes Back

A five-part Foul Play short story for Years 4, 5 and 6.

“We are reading ‘The Character Strikes Back’ this week, and SO enjoying it! They love the cliffhangers each day and beg me to read on…”

“Reading Tom Palmer’s short story ‘The Character Strikes Back’ to my Y3/4 class was as delightful an experience for me as a teacher as it was for my young listeners, who truly learned the meaning of a ‘cliff-hanger’. Writhing in a delightful agony of suspense and anticipation at the end of each day, their desperation to find out what happened next informed many discussions and some marvellous predictions. Parents even called the school to find where they could buy the book their children couldn’t stop talking about!” Catherine Monaghan, Y3/4 Teacher, Middleham CE VA School

Call of Duty

Call of DutyRead my short story Call of Duty about a famous footballer today having to go to war here.  (This was written to accompany Over the Line – about a footballer volunteering to fight in the First World War. )

The Flying Prince
The flying Prince

Read this new story The Flying Prince, written for the RAF Museum Big Draw here.

Find out more about my role as RAF Museums Children’s Writer in Residence here.


Incredible Edible Story

Incredible Edible image

Read a pdf version of this special children’s story, illustrated by Juliet Breese here.




I’ve been using the World Cup to help promote literacy  since 2006 (see here) with spin offs like the Rugby World Cup, Euros, with Dutch Diaries for the 2017 Women’s Football European Championships.  Thanks to all the pupils and teachers for your amazing support!

Rocky of the Rovers: I was thrilled to work again with the National Literacy Trust, Rebellion and The Football Association to write a free real time story set at the Women’s Football World Cup.   Readers followed the adventures of Rocky Race, her brother Roy and her football coach Ffion travelling around France to cheer on the Lionesses.   Catch up on the full 2019 story here

Foul Play World Cup MysteryOur previous reading activities were downloaded over 1,000,000 times and read by hundreds of thousands of pupils …

Read Foul Play:South Africa 2010 in full here.

Read Foul Play:Brazil 2014 in full here.

Read The Twickenham Trials:Rugby World Cup 2015 story in full here.

Read Foul Play 6:Rugby Six Nations 2016 in full here.

Read Over the Line:Euro 2016 in full here.

Read Dutch Diaries: Euro 2017 in full here.


Read Defenders:Russia was a live thriller set at the 2018 men’s football World Cup finals in Russia in full here.


Read Rocky of the Rovers set at the 2019 Women’s Football World Cup here.




“Hi My name is Lucy Bakewell, librarian at Hill West Primary School, and I have been downloading Tom’s fantastic episodic story from the Literacy Trust website. I just wanted to drop him a line to tell him how brilliantly his story is going down at our school. Every morning I have children, particularly the boys, running up to me to check that I have downloaded and printed out the latest chapter of the story. The feedback from all the teachers is really positive, they tell me that it has really captured the boys imaginations and is encouraging them to read too!Please pass on my comments, congratulations and continued success.” Lucy Bakewell, SLA School Librarian of the Year

“The best time I remember from my primary school was when our teacher read the Foul Play World Cup Mystery out to us. I’ll never forget us all listening together every morning and worrying about what would happen to Danny if England won!” Kylie

These new chapter stories are here in full for you to enjoy:

6 nations fullloidis



tour de leedsRead here the cycling story I read aloud to children across Leeds in the two weeks before the Tour de France.



case of missing trophy

Read here my cricketing mystery – The Case of the Missing Trophy and check here that you solved the case accurately.  This might be particularly interesting during the Ashes Series.

squad logo

Read my special Squad story Black and White Op written to celebrate the launch of The Squad series for Newcastle Libraries here.


British Council logoThe Mystery of the Stolen FA Cup Medal

Commissioned by the British Council and Reading Agency’s ‘Chatterbooks’ project.  With classroom resources.  Read and listen to the story here.

Tom Palmer Reading Foul PlayWatch my live reading from Foul Play at Oldham Academy North here.  For more videos click here.



More Literacy resources for all my other books are here.

Buy Books

Signed and dedicated copies of all my books are available personalised to order from my local independent children’s bookshop “The Thoughtful Spot” here. 

With an extra special Christmas or birthday card from me on request!

Overseas :
Australia: Boomerang

Canada: Amazon Canada
New Zealand: Wheelers

USA :  Indigo books

Visit myAmazon bookshop or support your local bookshop HIVE



Schools bumper 33 book pack
offer here

33 books
£194 saving £63 – over 25% discount

Please email


Schools class set offer here.

15 copies 20%+ discount
30 copies 25%+ discount
100 copies 30% + discount


Please email for a quote



Email me here for more information or use my contact form here to ask me a question.

Thank you.


Tom Palmer author


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