Scarlet and Ivy: The Lost Twin by Sophie Cleverly, reviewed by Sophie

This book is really good because it describes how the characters are feeling at that time. I liked the way the book was written as it was very descriptive and a wonderful read. It is a mystery book about twin Scarlet Grey who disappears from her school, Rookwood and her sister Ivy is invited to take her place. Friendships are made and bonds broken in this epic story. Can Ivy solve the mystery of her missing sister?

This tale of friendship, bravery and (naturally) mystery is a great read for those with a taste for adventure and mischief. I would recommend this book to everyone. 

My favourite character in this book was Ivy because she changes from a timid, shy person to a bold, brave mystery solving girl. 

I can’t wait to read the rest of the series as I know they’ll be great!

About the book

Ghostcloud by Michael Mann, reviewed by Aysha

About the book

‘A superbly inventive and magical debut’  
Piers Torday 

‘Beautifully written and filled with unforgettable characters … a diamond of a book’  
Ross McKenzie 

‘Utterly original, thrilling, strange and cracking good fun … every chapter is packed full of wild imagination’  
Liz Hyder  

Catch the wind. Find your freedom.  

A riveting, magical adventure set deep underneath a richly reimagined London for 9+ readers.  

Kidnapped and forced to shovel coal underneath a half-bombed, blackened power station, 12-year-old Luke’s life is miserable. Then, he discovers he can see things others can’t. Ghostly things. Specifically, a ghost-girl named Alma. Alma, who can ride clouds through the night sky and bend their shape to her will, befriends Luke. And with Alma’s help, Luke discovers he is in fact a rare being – half-human and half-something else …

Then Luke learns the terrible truth of why children are being kidnapped and forced to work in the power station, and he becomes even more desperate to escape.

Can Luke find out who he really is … and find his freedom?

Locked out Lily by Nick Lake and Emily Gravett, reviewed by Catherine

Locked Out Lily tells the story of a girl whose mum is having a baby. She’s about to become a big sister but she’s not happy about it! Lily is sent to her granny’s house when her parents go to hospital and that’s when strange things start happening. She runs away back to her house and realises she is locked out. Lily finds a talking crow who tries to help her, along with a band of his friends. Mouse, Mole and Snake are all talking creatures too who each help Lily in their own unique way.

Some of the other characters include the father-thing, the mother-thing and the baby-thing. These are like replacements of Lily’s family but they have empty black eyes and are not all they seem. Nick Lake is good at writing scary scenes with Lily and these demons – you don’t really know what they might do and the reader feels constantly on edge.

My favourite character was Mole because although she can’t see, she still helps Lily as much as she can. It’s not exactly a friendship between Lily and the animals but it is funny when Lily asks Crow if she’s dreaming and he does a poo on her head and asks, ‘Would that happen in a dream?’

Emily Gravett’s illustrations are amazing. I like how they are only done in black and white  but they still look and feel very real. She is famous for her drawings of little mice and some of the best pictures are the ones with Mouse. I wonder if Nick Lake put a mouse in his book for that exact reason?!

About the book

A startlingly original, stunningly-illustrated modern classic about learning to face your fears from the multi award-winning partnership of Nick Lake and Emily Gravett.

Lily just wants things to go back to the way they were: before she got sick, before her parents decided to have another baby. So when she’s sent away to stay with her grandmother while her mum has the baby, Lily is determined to go home. But she doesn’t expect to find people in her house – people who look like her parents, but definitely aren’t … Together with some unlikely animal companions, Lily must face her fears and summon the courage to break into her own house, and defeat ‘The Replacements’ before the night is out. 

Nick Lake’s atmospheric story of family and friendship is brought to spectacular life by Emily Gravett, twice winner of the Kate Greenaway Medal. 

‘A book of such wit and flair and delight: the kind of book you finish and immediately begin again, so that you can live again alongside the characters’ Katherine Rundell, bestselling author of The Explorer 

The Ice Whisperers by Helenka Stachera, reviewed by Alma

Imagine a world where the villains are the mysterious white eyed people with eyes like you or me and the heroes have completely black eyes. I like this as it lets you imagine a whole new species of human.

This fantasy adventure is about when Bela goes to live with her uncle who she’s never met. Exploring his strange scientific lab, she uncovers a deadly secret, a way to go to the spirit world! In it she finds a sister she never knew she had, born forty thousand years before.

Occasionally, going between the human world and the spirit world, and the different eras, was a bit confusing, but it was definitely worth it.

I really liked this book, because it made me feel like I was there. I also liked the relationship between the two sisters as it was more realistic than in some books. I say this as, at first, Ren-ya (the older sister) doesn’t trust Bela, but then their relationship grows and develops until they are extremely close.

                                                            HAPPY READING!

About the book

‘An epic icy adventure with a warming tale of sisterhood at its heart’ – Maria Kuzniar

‘Every way I look at it, I love this book from the crystalline brilliance of its surface to its tender, glowing heart’ – Zillah Bethell

A haunting magical adventure about two sisters born 40,000 years apart, perfect for fans of Frostheart and The Wild Way Home .  


When Bela’s mother dies, she is summoned to deepest Siberia to stay with an uncle she’s never met. Exploring his strange scientific workshop, she uncovers a secret she was never meant to find – a doorway that opens an to icy land, frozen in time and full of legends come to life.

But this frozen land is in danger, and it’s up to Bela to find a way to save it. To succeed, she must join forces with the impossible: a long-lost sister she never knew she had, born 40,000 years before . . .

The Five Clues (Don’t Doubt The Rainbow 1) by Anthony Kessel, reviewed by Laura-May

Edie is distraught after her mums death however at the stone setting she finds a clue! And with it a letter from her mum containing the knowledge that she was murdered!! Following Edie as she solves clues leading to important research -the last case her mum took! 

I loved this book! It was funny, heartwarming and gripping! It carried an amazing sense of mystery that enraptures the audience. Friendly characters, mind-bending puzzles and lots and lots of laughter.

Recommend for 10+ action and mystery lovers!  

About the book

The first book in the series, The Five Clues, is a real-time murder-mystery thriller and family drama, combining an exciting race against time with a heart-rending story about a teenager learning to live with the loss of a beloved parent.

Walking back from her mother’s grave, 13-year-old schoolgirl Edie Marble finds a note in a pocket of the sheepskin coat that she hasn’t worn since the day, a year earlier, when she received the awful news of her mother’s death. The note is from her mother, who had been looking into a corporate human rights violation and had become fearful for her life after receiving death threats. She trusts only Edie – because of their special bond and Edie’s intelligence – and has laid a trail of clues for Edie to find that will help her to shed light on the violation and uncover the mystery around her death.

Through her wit and determination, Edie steadily gathers evidence and negotiates the dramatic twists and turns of the story by collaborating with her friends and family to gradually unearth a sinister attempt by a pharmaceutical company to conceal their illegal development of a lethal virus.

As Edie’s investigations progress she is introduced, in parallel, to the Three Principles, which help her conquer various psychological stresses and support her in coming to terms with her grief. Reading age 11+

A Dinosaur Ate My Sister by Pooja Puri and Allen Fatimaharan, reviewed by Mia

This book looks like so much fun. Mia certainly thinks so!

About the book

A Dinosaur Ate My Sister is the first book selected in the Marcus Rashford Book Club.

‘The perfect story to escape into and find adventure. Pooja is super talented and I’m a big fan!’ – Marcus Rashford MBE

This brilliantly illustrated, laugh-out-loud, wacky adventure through time by Pooja Puri is the perfect blend of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and Jurassic Park. 

Before you start reading, there are a few things you should know:

1. I, Esha Verma, am a genius inventor extraordinaire.
2. There is nothing I cannot invent. This includes words. 
3. I did not mean to send my sister back to the Age of the Dinosaurs. That was HER OWN FAULT (Mum and Dad, if you’re reading this, please take note).

Esha Verma, her snotty apprentice Broccoli and his cunning pet tortoise have a dream. They are going to win the legendary Brain Trophy – the ultimate inventing prize. This year’s entry: A TIME MACHINE.

But the day before the competition, Esha’s IGNORAMUS big sister hijacks the time machine and is lost in the Cretaceous age. 

With help from a new recruit for The Office of Time, Esha and Broccoli will have to face hungry dinosaurs, mysterious black holes and malfunctioning inventions to get them back in time.

Grimwood by Nadia Shireen, reviewed by Evie

This book is tree-bonker-mendous! After just a few pages I couldn’t help but laugh my head off!
Hey I am Evie! I love playing with my friends, dancing, singing and having adventures through the stories that I read. My favourite stories so far are the Magic Ballerina books where some magic ballet shoes take dancers on magical adventures 🩰 . I also love crazy Roald Dahl books – they are so funny 😆 people get stretched, blown up and even disappear and I love snowy stories like Snow Day and also the enchanting Snow Dragon.  Reading is so amazing as every time you turn a page you go into another world and I love that 🥰.

About the book

‘Funny, anarchic, original and gloriously silly.’ Richard Osman

‘Ted and Nancy are my favourite funny foxes EVER.’ Liz Pichon, author of Tom Gates

Laugh your head off with this fully-illustrated new series from award-winning Nadia Shireen. Perfect for readers age 7 to 107, fans of Dog Man, Roald Dahl, Mr Gum and David Walliams, and anyone who loves to laugh.

Fox cub siblings Ted and Nancy are on the run from Princess Buttons, the scariest street cat in the Big City. They flee for Grimwood, expecting to find refuge in the peaceful countryside. Instead, they are met with thieving eagles, dramatic ducks, riotous rabbits and a whole host of unusual characters. Grimwood is .. . weird. But when Princess Buttons tracks them down, Nancy and Ted and the animals of Grimwood must unite in a mind-bending race against time . . .

This memorable, distinctive and warm-hearted comedy series will have kids begging to read more. Nadia Shireen has won awards for her picture books including the UKLA Book Award for Good Little Wolf, and her latest, Barbara Throws a Wobbler, has been described as a ‘little doorway of joy’ by Caitlin Moran. She’s also been shortlisted for the Roald Dahl Funny Prize and the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize, and has been Writer-Illustrator in Residence for BookTrust.

Grimwood is her first series for older readers.

The Outlaws Scarlett and Browne by Jonathan Stroud, reviewed by James

The Outlaws Scarlett & Browne is an excellent book, full of exciting twists and turns that follows Scarlett McCain and her slightly bedraggled partner Albert Browne as they outwit the law in a thrilling chase through a scarred and broken Britain, but things aren’t as they seem: their pursuers aren’t stopping, and something just isn’t quite right about this chase; something that revolves around the boy Albert Browne and his past, present, and possibly his future… I really enjoyed this book, with its almost non-stop action and unexpected revelations, and I would definitely read more of Jonathan Stroud’s books, should they become available to me. All in all, a brilliant book that kept me on my toes while reading it and begging for more once finished. A must read!

I am 13 years old and I have Type 1 diabetes.  I like reading, experimenting with new things, playing football and I support Arsenal. At school my favourite subject is Drama. (Loves Robert Muchamore, Anthony Horowitz, Hunger Games and his fave book is The Knife of Never Letting Go

About the book:

Set in a broken, future England, where gunfights and monsters collide, this is the exciting first title in a phenomenal fantasy teen series by the bestselling children’s novelist.

“You won’t be able to put this down. A classic in the making.” – Eoin Colfer

“Perfectly paced, beautifully written and bursting with black humour and bold ideas.” – Philip Reeve

“”Imaginative, original, taut and with multi-layered protagonists… A wild ride.” – Jo Cotterill

 Scarlett and Browne is phenomenal, unputdownable storytelling of the highest order.” – Piers Torday  

England has been radically changed by a series of catastrophes – large cities have disappeared and London has been replaced by a lagoon. The surviving population exists in fortified towns where they cling to traditional ways, while strangely evolved beasts prowl the wilderness beyond. Conformity is rigidly enforced and those who fall foul of the rules are persecuted: some are killed, others are driven out into the wilds. Only a few fight back – and two of these outlaws, Scarlett McCain and Albert Browne, display an audacity and talent that makes them legends.

Grimwood by Nadia Shireen, reviewed by Katy

Two foxes called Nancy and Ted lose their parents and Nancy has to look after Ted. Ted accidentally bites off Princess Button’s, (a cat), tail. Nancy and Ted have to run away to Grimwood, a hilarious wood. 

It is a very hilarious story because it is full of funny things, like crazy animals. I think aged 7+ children would like this book.

My name is Katy and I like horses, unicorns and cats. My hobbies are reading and playing and singing. At school I like all the subjects. 

The Book Nook staff opinion:

We love this book! Perfect for fans of Dave the Pigeon and Pests, this highly illustrated early chapter book is full of fun and had us reading sneakily under the counter and giggling out loud.

This series is sure to be an absolute winner!

About the book:

‘Funny, anarchic, original and gloriously silly.’ Richard Osman

‘Ted and Nancy are my favourite funny foxes EVER.’ Liz Pichon, author of Tom Gates

Laugh your head off with this fully-illustrated new series from award-winning Nadia Shireen. Perfect for readers age 7 to 107, fans of Dog Man, Roald Dahl, Mr Gum and David Walliams, and anyone who loves to laugh.

Fox cub siblings Ted and Nancy are on the run from Princess Buttons, the scariest street cat in the Big City. They flee for Grimwood, expecting to find refuge in the peaceful countryside. Instead, they are met with thieving eagles, dramatic ducks, riotous rabbits and a whole host of unusual characters. Grimwood is .. . weird. But when Princess Buttons tracks them down, Nancy and Ted and the animals of Grimwood must unite in a mind-bending race against time . . .

This memorable, distinctive and warm-hearted comedy series will have kids begging to read more.

Nadia Shireen has won awards for her picture books including the UKLA Book Award for Good Little Wolf, and her latest, Barbara Throws a Wobbler, has been described as a ‘little doorway of joy’ by Caitlin Moran. She’s also been shortlisted for the Roald Dahl Funny Prize and the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize, and has been Writer-Illustrator in Residence for BookTrust. Grimwood is her first series for older readers.

The Unexpected Tale of Bastien Bonlivre by Clare Povey, reviewed by Rosa

This book was amazing especially the last few chapters, they were breath-taking, gripping and indescribably good!  Bastien Bonlivre is a jewel of my bookcase that I will read again and again.

The storyline of this book is very twisty. It is about a tween boy who has an amazing talent for writing, soon after his birthday his parents are killed and, strangely other writers are going missing too. He and Theo need to stop the kidnappers before it’s too late.

The fact that all the boys at the orphanage all had magnificent talents was a great part and they all were loyal friends to Bastien and each other. The language used in this book was fabulous and set the scene vividly in my mind!  

My name is Rosa and I am nine, I live in Hove with my cat Minty, annoying brother Otto and my parents. I love reading and writing. Writing is not just popping words on a page, to me it’s a step into a new world, everything is amazing and crazy, nothing is boring and grey. Reading is one of my total passions. My favourite books are usually mystery/action and include The Percy Jackson series, Harry Potter and some other smashing books. I have also written two books: Story Le Jenrale; and Paris at its Worst. Currently I am writing another, it is a picture book this time and is called Don’t Zigzag the Zoo.

About the book:

The open door felt like an invitation, or a trap. Bastien wasn’t sure which, but with no other choice, he stepped inside…and hoped he’d make it out again alive.

Bastien Bonlivre is a boy with a big imagination, determined to finish the story his parents started, left to him in a red notebook. 

On the other side of Paris, bestselling author Olivier Odieux is struggling to complete his latest novel. Along with his villainous brothers, he is masterminding his greatest plot yet…one that will spread fear throughout the city and beyond.

What connects these two stories is a dangerous secret, a hidden mystery and an unexpected race across Paris for the truth. Can Bastien and his friends Alice, Theo and Sami be brave enough to stop Olivier stealing the ending they deserve? A classic adventure story about friendship, hope, bravery and the power of imagination.