‘Skulduggery Pleasant’ by Derek Landy

This is a brilliant, action-packed, fantasy book. Derek Landy pulls you in and traps you in this book’s claws. I recommend it to kids who like magic, action and danger, as this book is full of these. The book has great characters and it is even quite funny for what is. Well, the story is about a 12 year old girl called Stephanie Edgly. She is a bit bored with her life, then her Uncle Gordon dies. She inherits his big house and everything in it. But an old friend of Gordon’s turns up at the funeral – his name is Skulduggery Pleasant. He saves her life while she’s home alone at her uncle’s house and somebody (a mystery man!) tries to kill her. She finds out Skulduggery is a skeleton and that there is a whole world of magic out there. Soon she is tied up in that world. There people have to take a name to stop other people from controlling them, so Stephanie becomes Valkyrie Cain. Here’s the plot. A man, Nefarian Serpine, has taken the Sceptre of the Ancients, which has extraordinary power – it can kill gods (the Faceless Ones), making him almost unstoppable. Valkyrie and Skulduggery are the only ones who can stop him from controlling the world (with a little help from friends in small places). They also want to solve her Uncle’s murder. I don’t want to spoil the rest of it for you. This is the first in a series of books (there are ten at the moment). I recommend them all; I’d read them again!

Review by 12 year old Finn Buck

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‘StormBreaker’ by Anthony Horowitz

I think this book series is incredible, fizz-banging good. I recommend it to kids who like mystery and spy books. The book is well written and full to the brim with twists and turns. The story is about 14 year old Alex Rider whose parents died a few years before. He is just your normal schoolboy (who is a black belt in karate …!) until his Uncle (his guardian and an MI6 agent) dies in a car crash. He is left with Jack, his housekeeper, who, for your information, is an American girl. What Alex doesn’t know is that by training him in everything a spy needs, such as karate, sports and extreme sports, his uncle had been preparing him for MI6. MI6 now approach him as they want him to go on a mission for them. He refuses. Then they threaten to take away Jack’s visa so he agrees. Then he finds himself in a SAS training centre, where he goes through two weeks of gruelling training. After the training, he is sent on a mission to the power plant of Herod Sayle, the man behind StormBreaker, an incredibly powerful computer. Sayle is giving these computers free to  every secondary school in England. There’s something not right about these computers and Alex must find out and stop Sayle’s plot. This plot is what got Alex’s uncle killed.  Alex poses as the winner of a contest which sees him invited him to see the first StormBreaker computer in operation. I won’t tell you how, but Alex finds out what it was that got his Uncle killed and what he must do. Alex is now the only one who can stop Herod. I’m not telling you anymore – read it yourself! This is a cracking read and Anthony is an amazingly good writer who bends the words to his will.

Review by 12 year old Finn Buck.

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‘Ravens Gate’ by Anthony Horowitz

In my opinion, this is a fantastic book and I would highly recommend it to ages 10 to 14. Its a page-turning epic of a book for me because I love fantasy and magic stories and this is one of them. I think you’ll love it. It is written very well and I think Anthony Horowitz is one of the best authors of our generation. The story is about 14 year old Matt Freeman whose parents died 6 years ago. He’s left living with his nasty aunt and now he’s getting involved with petty crime like shoplifting with his mate Kelvin. But one day, they are caught burgling a warehouse. Then he gets sent off to a foster home in the country where there’s something wrong with the village. Then he finds out about the Old Ones and who he is. This book was definitely better than I thought.

Review by 12 year old Finn Buck

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‘The Enemy’ by Charlie Higson

I think this book is incredibly good. I would recommend it to ages 10 to 14 (or younger or older). The book is set on a post-apocalyptic earth, where everyone over 14 has been hit by a disease, which made them go mad. It ravaged their bodies or they would die a very ugly death. The story is shown from many different perspectives and opinions. It’s set in a London of the future . The kids in the story are all spread out in different locations/landmarks like Buckingham Palace. For people like me, who like action and adventure stories, this is the book for you. Keep this in mind: It’s a bit depressing because of the amount of people who die. Beware squeamish people.

Review by Finn Buck aged 12

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