Monday, 22 May 2017

Mr Ripley's Enchanted Books: Children's Middle Grade Book Picks (9-12yrs) May 2017 - US Post

Laura Ruby - York: The Shadow Cipher - Published by Walden Pond Press (May 16, 2017) - ISBN-13: 978-0062306937

“The first book in an exciting new series that's great for fans of steampunk, history, mystery, and magic. Let the puzzles begin!” (Brightly.com)
From National Book Award finalist and Printz Award winner, Laura Ruby comes an epic alternate history series about three kids who try to solve the greatest mystery of the modern world: a puzzle and treasure hunt laid into the very streets and buildings of New York City.
It was 1798 when the Morningstarr twins arrived in New York with a vision for a magnificent city: towering skyscrapers, dazzling machines, and winding train lines, all running on technology no one had ever seen before. Fifty-seven years later, the enigmatic architects disappeared, leaving behind for the people of New York the Old York Cipher—a puzzle laid into the shining city they constructed, at the end of which was promised a treasure beyond all imagining. By the present day, however, the puzzle has never been solved, and the greatest mystery of the modern world is little more than a tourist attraction.
Tess and Theo Biedermann and their friend Jaime Cruz live in a Morningstarr apartment—until a real estate developer announces that the city has agreed to sell him the five remaining Morningstarr buildings. Their likely destruction means the end of a dream long held by the people of New York. And if Tess, Theo, and Jaime want to save their home, they have to prove that the Old York Cipher is real. Which means they have to solve it.

Stephanie Burgis - The Dragon with a Chocolate Heart - Published by Bloomsbury USA Childrens (May 30, 2017) - ISBN-13: 978-1681193434

Aventurine is a brave young dragon ready to explore the world outside of her family's mountain cave . . . if only they'd let her leave it. Her family thinks she's too young to fly on her own, but she's determined to prove them wrong by capturing the most dangerous prey of all: a human.
But when that human tricks her into drinking enchanted hot chocolate, she's transformed into a puny human without any sharp teeth, fire breath, or claws. Still, she's the fiercest creature in these mountains--and now she's found her true passion: chocolate. All she has to do is get to the human city to find herself an apprenticeship (whatever that is) in a chocolate house (which sounds delicious), and she'll be conquering new territory in no time . . . won't she?
A classic fantasy with terrific girl power, perfect for fans of Shannon Hale and Jessica Day George.

Laurel Snyder - Orphan Island - Published by Walden Pond Press (May 30, 2017) - ISBN-13: 978-0062443410

"A wondrous book, wise and wild and deeply true." —Kelly Barnhill, Newbery Medal-winning author of The Girl Who Drank the Moon
For readers who loved Sara Pennypacker's Pax and Lois Lowry's The Giver comes a deep, compelling, heartbreaking, and completely one-of-a-kind novel about nine children who live on a mysterious island.
On the island, everything is perfect. The sun rises in a sky filled with dancing shapes; the wind, water, and trees shelter and protect those who live there; when the nine children go to sleep in their cabins, it is with full stomachs and joy in their hearts. And only one thing ever changes: on that day, each year, when a boat appears from the mist upon the ocean carrying one young child to join them—and taking the eldest one away, never to be seen again.
Today’s Changing is no different. The boat arrives, taking away Jinny’s best friend, Deen, replacing him with a new little girl named Ess, and leaving Jinny as the new Elder. Jinny knows her responsibility now—to teach Ess everything she needs to know about the island, to keep things as they’ve always been. But will she be ready for the inevitable day when the boat will come back—and take her away forever from the only home she’s known?

Caroline Carlson - The World's Greatest Detective - Published by HarperCollins (May 16, 2017) - ISBN-13: 978-0062368270

  • Caroline Carlson, the author of the Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates series, returns with The World’s Greatest Detective, a story of crime, tricks, and hilarity for those who know that sometimes it takes a pair of junior sleuths to solve a slippery case. Detectives’ Row is full of talented investigators, but Toby Montrose isn’t one of them. He’s only an assistant at his uncle’s detective agency, and he’s not sure he’s even very good at that. Toby’s friend Ivy is the best sleuth around—or at least she thinks so. They both see their chance to prove themselves when the famed Hugh Abernathy announces a contest to choose the World’s Greatest Detective. But when what was supposed to be a game turns into a real-life murder mystery, can Toby and Ivy crack the case?

Monday, 15 May 2017

Mr Ripley's Enchanted Books: Children's Middle Grade Book Picks (9-12yrs) May 2017 - UK Post One

Peter Bunzl - Moonlocket (The Cogheart Adventures #2) - Published by Usborne Publishing Ltd (1 May 2017) - ISBN-13: 978-1474915014

It's hard to escape the secrets from the past.
Storm clouds gather over Lily and Robert's summer when criminal mastermind the Jack of Diamonds appears. For Jack is searching for the mysterious Moonlocket - but that's not the only thing he wants.

Suddenly, dark secrets from Robert's past plunge him into danger. Jack is playing a cruel game that Robert is a part of. Now Lily and Malkin, the mechanical fox, must stay one step ahead before Jack plays his final, deadly card...

David Almond (Author), Alex T Smith (Illustrator) - The Tale of Angelino Brown - Published by Walker Books (4 May 2017) - ISBN-13: 978-1406358070

Bert and Betty Brown have got themselves a little angel. Bert found him in his top pocket when he was driving his bus. Bert and Betty's friends think he's lovely. So do Nancy and Jack and Alice from Class 5K. What a wonder!

But Acting Head Teacher Mrs Mole is not so sure. Nor is Professor Smellie. Or the mysterious bloke in black who claims to be a School Inspector. Then there's Basher Malone - big, lumbering Basher Malone. He REALLY doesn't like Angelino. And it looks like he's out to get him...

Geraldine Mccaughrean - Where the World Ends - Published by Usborne Publishing Ltd (1 May 2017) - ISBN-13: 978-1474921145

Every time a lad came fowling on the St Kilda stacs, he went home less of a boy and more of a man. If he went home at all, that is... In the summer of 1727, a group of men and boys are put ashore on a remote sea stac to harvest birds for food. No one returns to collect them. Why? Surely nothing but the end of the world can explain why they have been abandoned to endure storms, starvation and terror. And how can they survive, housed in stone and imprisoned on every side by the ocean?

Bobbie Peers - William Wenton and the Impossible Puzzle - Published by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (23 May 2017) - ISBN-13: 978-1534404724

Blackthorn Key meets The Da Vinci Code in this award-winning novel about a puzzle-solving genius who is forced to use his skills to face a danger that has been lurking in the background for years. 
Twelve-year-old William Wenton is a puzzle-solving genius. He lives with his family in a quiet Norwegian town. They used to live in England, but eight years ago his family suddenly packed up, moved away, and even changed their last name! Neither of his parents will offer an explanation or tell William why he has to keep his talent for solving codes and puzzles a secret. But then a special exhibit comes to the local museum: the Impossible Puzzle. The experts say it is unsolvable, but William's sure that he can crack it if he gets a chance. 
However, when he does, everything begins to go wrong. Suddenly William is whisked off to a strange school filled with robots and kids whose skills are almost as good as his own. But what's really going on? And what's the secret involving William's grandfather? And is there anyone he can trust?

Friday, 12 May 2017

Mr Ripley's Enchanted Books: Lorraine Gregory - Mold and the Poison Plot - Book Review


He's got a big heart . . . and a nose to match! 
Mold's a bit of a freak. His nose is as big as his body is puny and his mother abandoned him in a bin when he was a mere baby. Who else but the old healer, Aggy, would have taken him in and raised him as her own? But when Aggy is accused of poisoning the King, Mold sets out to clear her name.  
In a thrilling race against time to save Aggy from the hangman's noose, Mold faces hideous, deadly monsters like the Yurg and the Purple Narlo Frog. He finds true friendship in the most unusual - and smelly - of places and must pit his wits and his clever nose against the evil witch Hexaba. 


Lorraine Gregory’s middle-grade ‘Mold and the Poison Plot’ is a fantastic book to read. Co-creator of , she is a fantastic advocate for children's books as her debut book shows passion and sparkle through the narrative.  


This is a great fantasy story that has a big heart and a smelly tale to tell. You will leap into the action from the very first page and will follow your nose into an adventure full of danger and absolute smelly mayhem. Along the way, you will follow the main character, Mold, into a narrative that will make your mind squelch through footsteps of bravery. The plot is full of deceit, danger and some really epic moments that fall straight off the pages into the subconscious mind. 


A great and distinctive new voice can be heard through the lovable character, Mold. The story starts in the settled life of Pellegarno, a fantasy world, that has been delightfully installed into this easy and fun read with utter skill and grace. However, only a few chapters later things go suddenly wrong. Aggy is arrested for poisoning the King and, with nowhere or no-one else to turn to, Mold must find a way to prove her innocence before it’s too late. It soon becomes a story full of unexpected allies and betrayals.  

It was a real pleasure to read this book, especially when struggling to find the time to read. I picked up this book, looked at the fantastic book cover by the talented Mr Tom Mead (
a surreal character designer and fine artist) and was instantly sold. Tom traditionally works with pen drawings on paper or wood, but recently he has started drawing and painting on a much larger scale. He has completed works in Bristol, Brighton, Iceland and Cape Town. 


This is a fantastic start to a promising writing career. It has all the influences based on many hours of reading and the love of books with a good story. I am looking forward to reading much more from this author in the future. Thank you to OUP for sending this book to me to review.