AN ADVENTURE series harking back to the days of Enid Blyton is this month’s pick for the Oxford Mail Junior Book Club.

The Mystery of the Vanishing Skeleton, by Helen Moss, will cost just £2.50 with the attached voucher instead of £4.99.

Waterstones children’s bookseller Josh Clarke said since he put the book and others in the Adventure Island series on display, they had been flying off the shelves.

Mr Clarke said: “The covers alone are stunning and very reminiscent of more old-school books.

“They seem to be the spiritual successor to some of the books from the 1950s, such as Enid Blyton, but so far not many people have heard of them. Since putting it on display, it is going from strength to strength.”

Mr Clarke hoped the book would prove a big success for the group, and said customers who had picked up one title came back again and again to read more in the series.

He said: “Helen Moss is one of those writers who have realised children are not stupid.

“The books are not dumbed down, but they are not difficult to read either.

“I have noticed it has got children that are reluctant to read interested and it is a very gender neutral title, both in presentation and the characters.”

Mr Clarke himself struggled to get into reading as a child, and it wasn’t until he was 10 that he picked up a copy of Terry Pratchett’s The Colour of Magic – a book aimed at adults – and got the reading bug.

He said: “Suddenly I discovered there are books that aren’t ridiculously simplistic.

“Since then the quality of children’s fiction has improved exponentially, and because of my experiences, I am very passionate about the whole reluctant readers side of things.”

The Junior Book Club launched in October, and previous titles include David Walliams’s Gangsta Granny, Jeff Kinney’s Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Michael Morpurgo’s A Medal for Leroy.

Mr Clarke said: “”It has been phenomenal and while some of these titles have been ones which are already very popular, there has definitely been an uplift in sales.

“The club is bringing these fantastic children’s books to the attention of parents as well as children.”

To benefit from the offer, cut out the attached token and take it to Waterstones, Broad Street, before March 31.

The Junior Book Club is part of the Oxfordshire Reading Campaign – a county council initiative aimed at improving reading levels and fostering a lifelong love of books.