All the Money in the World by Sarah Moore Fitzgerald, reviewed by Abi

All the Money in the World focuses on fifteen-year-old Penny and her struggle to remain true to herself following a life-changing event. Penny lives in a small, damp flat, a modern-day tenement in a once grand house that has seen better days. Struggling to cope with the grind of consistent poverty, bullied at school because of her socio-economic status, Penny wishes for more. And that wish comes true when a new friendship and a huge sum of money suddenly enter her life.

This is a timely story for readers of all ages, especially in a country facing an ongoing housing crisis, where the right to a home can no longer be taken for granted. Penny is a wonderful character, flawed and fallible but wonderfully empathetic, and inspiring in her resilience.

While there is a moral at the heart of the story – who you is what matters, not what you have or don’t have – the author never falls into the trap of preaching to her readers, offering instead and realistic and resonant account of what happens when a teenager’s dreams seem to come true. Compelling and extremely readable, this new story from an already accomplished author will stay with the reader long after the last page is read.

I have two sisters, both are younger than me (I’m the oldest child). I’ve lived in Brighton and Hove my whole life. I live with both of my parents and siblings. I have 6 cats which can be very stressful at times. When I’m older I want to become an English teacher, I want to inspire young people to follow their dreams.

About the book

One day you’re broke. The next, you have all the money in the world. What would you do? A gripping, timely story about cold, hard cash and little white lies for fans of Jenny Valentine, Siobhan Dowd and Lara Williamson.

Fifteen-year-old Penny longs for something better. Better than a small, damp flat. Better than her bullying classmates and uninterested teachers. Better than misery and poverty day in day out. 

An unlikely friendship and a huge sum of money promise a whole lot of new chances for Penny, and she realises that not only can she change her life, she can change herself . 

But at what cost?

Perfect for readers of 10+.

‘If you have a child between the ages of 9 and 13, and they’re not reading Sarah Moore Fitzgerald’s work, you’re missing a trick. Her latest book is laced with her trademark compassion and kindness, as well as being a cracking good read on privilege, wealth and identity. Not to be missed.’ Louise O’Neill, Irish Examiner

The Upper World by Femi Fadugba, reviewed by Torrin

The Upper World is the stunning debut from Femi Fadugba. Interstellar meets Attack the Block in a head on collision of fact and physics.

Esso hits his head in a car crash and is transported to the mysterious “Uppper World” which may or may not facilitate a form of mental time-travel. 
Meanwhile Rhia meets her new personal tutor Dr Esso, who begins to explain not just her  homework but the physics of time-travel itself. 

This is one of the best science fiction novels I have read in a long, long time. What might seen like a time-travel story from the outside is in [reality] a carefully veiled story of redemption, loss and acceptance. Esso and Rhia have a very different dynamic to the central characters of a typical teen novel. The story is not about love but acceptance. 

Although the concept of time travel is an important aspect of the book. It often takes a backseat to so it’s effects on the novel’s characters can be explored. With something as high concept as time travel it can often be difficult to get your head around the mechanics of it. But Fadugba uses modern metaphors and simple language to make the concept accessible for all. 

This book is a truly excellent read, and one that I urge you to pick up! 

Hello, I’m Torrin. I like good books. I’m a fan of Crime, Fantasy and Sci-Fi. My favourite quote from any book is: “Doors are for people with no imagination” If it’s got too much description and emotions, I probably won’t read it.  Check out my website at www.ananonymousautistic.wordpress.com   

About the book

This epic thriller is soon to be a major Netflix movie starring Academy Award winner Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out, Black Panther, Judas and the Black Messiah).  

‘Believing is seeing, Esso . . .’

Esso is running out of time and into trouble. When he discovers he has the ability to see glimpses of the future, he becomes haunted by a vision of a bullet fired in an alleyway with devastating consequences. 

A generation later, fifteen-year-old Rhia is desperately searching for answers – and a catastrophic moment from the past holds the key to understanding the parents she never got to meet.

Whether on the roads of South London or in the mysterious Upper World, Esso and Rhia’s fates must collide.

And when they do, a race against the clock will become a race against time itself . . .

Hold Back the Tide by Melinda Salisbury, reviewed by Laura-May

It was bone-chillingly wonderful. A sense of quiet dread fills you up as you follow the characters along their journey! In a good way of course! It had a great plot and ending, but I’m not going to give it away it’s just such addictive of a story! I enjoyed the added Scottish culture we learn too! Once again I recommend!

I was born in Worthing but I live in Lancing, I really like it as I love my neighbourhood. I’ve always loved English and reading in fact in Year 3 I entered the Wicked writing competition and I got down to the final with my story Playdates about a girl making friends with a ghost. And the library ANY library has always been a place I feel calm and happy. So many doorways to adventure I can never pick! In Year 6 I volunteered to help put books away at lunch times. And of course my highlight of the summer the library reading challenge I participated in for about 6 years straight. I try to spread my love for reading too be it by tutoring my neighbour in English or by recommending books to friends I just love it. 

About the book

Everyone knows what happened to Alva’s mother, all those years ago. But when dark forces begin to stir in Ormscaula, Alva has to face a very different future – and question everything she thought she knew about her past… Unsettling, sharply beautiful and thought-provoking, HOLD BACK THE TIDE is the new novel from Melinda Salisbury, bestselling author of The Sin Eater’s Daughter trilogy.

House of Hollow by Krystal Sutherland, reviewed by Sophie

This book is a mystery that will capture your attention as the bond between the three Hollow sisters Grey, Vivi and Iris is deeply explored. A uniquely horrifying story, where the beauty of language is entwined into the very soul of this tale and Krystal Sutherland knows how to tell a tale. 

So when an unknown man in a bull skull kidnaps Grey, it is down to Iris and Vivi to find her – but where and from what? It really is a story of dark, dark secrets.

House of Hollow is a modern-day thriller like you’ve never read before. I ask you now, will you be prepared for the unexpected when it comes sinisterly crawling nearer?

Hi, I’m Sophie and I absolutely love books, tv, music and films. My favorite film has to be How to train your Dragon. I play the Saxophone and I’m studying English Lit/Lang, Film studies and Textiles for my A-levels.  

About the book

‘This story will steal up your spine, slip beneath your skin, and stick to you like honey.’ — Samantha Shannon

The Hollow sisters – Vivi, Grey and Iris – are as seductively glamorous as they are mysterious. They have black eyes and hair as white as milk. The Hollow sisters don’t have friends – they don’t need them. They move through the corridors like sharks, the other little fish parting around them, whispering behind their backs.

And everyone knows who the Hollow sisters are. Because one day the three Hollow sisters simply disappeared. And when they came back, one month later, with no memory of where they had been, it was as if nothing had changed. Almost nothing, Apart from, for example, the little scar that had appeared in the hollow of their throats … and a whispering sense that something is not quite right about them, despite (or maybe because of) the terrible passion to be with them that they can exert on anybody at will…A thrilling, twisting, novel that is as seductive and glamorous as the Hollow sisters themselves….

A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson, reviewed by Isobel

This book is a dark and engaging mystery novel with plenty of suspense, well developed characters, and moments of extreme danger. 

Sal Singh murdered Andie Bell – at least that is what everyone thought happened- and the investigation was closed five years ago. But, having grown up in the same town as the murder took place, and having known Sal Singh as he once defended her from a group of bullies, A- grade student Pippa Fitz-Amobi is certain that it wasn’t Sal who killed Andie. And she wants to prove it. But as she starts to uncover secrets she finds out that there is someone in town who wants them to stay hidden, and if the real killer is still out there then they will do anything within their power to conceal the truth from Pip. 

As you learn more about these characters and what they want, you begin to grow suspicious of everyone, conflicted between suspects. You become genuinely frightened when these characters find themselves in danger. 

Holly Jackson has written a gripping mystery story that  is impossible to put down. 

Isobel (known to her friends as Izzy) was born in Edinburgh and lived in Tudela (Spain) and Glasgow before settling in Shoreham-by-Sea by the time she was eight years old. She lives with her mum, dad, brother, sister and her cat, Peggy. She attends Shoreham Academy, having started there amid the global pandemic of 2020. In her spare time Isobel reads (obviously), draws, writes poetry and stories and makes plans for world domination. She is not a big fan of maths or meat-eating.

About the book:

The New York Times No.1 bestselling YA crime thriller that everyone is talking about!

THE WINNER OF THE BRITISH BOOK AWARDS’ CHILDREN’S BOOK OF THE YEAR 2020

SHORTLISTED FOR THE WATERSTONES CHILDREN’S BOOK PRIZE 2020

‘A fiendishly-plotted mystery that kept me guessing until the very end.’ – Laura Purcell, bestselling author of The Silent Companions

A debut YA crime thriller as addictive as Serial as compelling as Riverdale and as page-turning as One of Us Is Lying

The case is closed. Five years ago, schoolgirl Andie Bell was murdered by Sal Singh. The police know he did it. Everyone in town knows he did it.

But having grown up in the same small town that was consumed by the crime, Pippa Fitz-Amobi isn’t so sure. When she chooses the case as the topic for her final project, she starts to uncover secrets that someone in town desperately wants to stay hidden. And if the real killer is still out there, how far will they go to keep Pip from the truth … ?

Perfect for fans of One of Us Is Lying , Gone Girl, We Were Liars and Riverdale

Holly Jackson started writing stories from a young age, completing her first (poor) attempt at a novel aged fifteen. She lives in London and aside from reading and writing, she enjoys playing video games and watching true crime documentaries so she can pretend to be a detective. A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder is her first novel. You can follow Holly on Twitter and Instagram @HoJay92

Don’t Doubt the Rainbow: The Five Clues by Anthony Kessel, reviewed by Alex

One year after Edie Marbles mum dies in a devastating train accident, Edie finds a letter in the pocket of her coat. It contains the first of five clues, written by her mum before her death, that will take Edie on a journey she never imagined.

Overall, I would give this book ★★★★☆ because it was captivating and almost hypnotic, while remaining realistic. And, the plot being set in London around a
schoolgirl, it was relatable, too. The book had an air of humour around it but was wholly a mystery/detective story, which I quite liked.

I am intelligent, funny and a very enthusiastic reader. I enjoy reading action-adventure and crime novels. My favourite book series is Skulduggery Pleasant, but I have also read The Inheritance Cycle, Alex Rider, The Hunger Games and the Scythe series. When I’m not reading I like to draw and especially write.

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+

Tremendous Things by Susin Nielson, reviewed by Laura-May

Laura-May here and I just finished Tremendous Things by Susan Nielsen and I loved it!

Following Wilbur in his journey to self-assurance it teaches not just Wilbur but teaches the reader. All in a fight to win his French crush’s heart, Wilbur takes on a whole lifestyle change with his 85 year old friend Sal and (his same age friends) Alex and Fab! Competing against his long term bully Tyler, not only must Wilbur learn to love the person he is but all whilst raising the £500 to go to Paris to meet up again with his crush, French exchange student Charlotte (Charlie)! No pressure! 

I loved the message and relatable characters. As well as it being funny it was written in a tone for younger teenagers or older kids. The plot never felt dragged out it was constant. BIG recommend!

About the book

Wilbur is sure he’s a loser: he spends his life being bullied, his best friend is 85 years old, and his only talent is playing the triangle in the school band. But things start to look up when he gets the chance to be part of the French exchange. Wilbur’s billet Charlie arrives to spend the week with him and his two moms . . . and it turns out that Charlie is a girl. An amazing, sophisticated, French girl who Wilbur instantly falls in love with. Keen to win her heart, Wilbur agrees to a total life makeover before he sees Charlie again on the return trip to Paris. But the course of true amour never did run smooth . . .

I was born in Worthing but I live in Lancing, I really like it as I love my neighbourhood. I’ve always loved English and reading in fact in Year 3 I entered the Wicked writing competition and I got down to the final with my story Playdates about a girl making friends with a ghost. And the library ANY library has always been a place I feel calm and happy. So many doorways to adventure I can never pick! In Year 6 I volunteered to help put books away at lunch times. And of course my highlight of the summer the library reading challenge I participated in for about 6 years straight. I try to spread my love for reading too be it by tutoring my neighbour in English or by recommending books to friends I just love it. 

Heir of Fire and Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas, reviewed by Alex

Heir of Fire

Calaena Sardothien has travelled to Wendlyn to
locate the Immortal Queen Maeve of the fae, for her
help in defeating the King of Adarlan. In Varese, the
Prince Rowan takes her to the castle, where Queen
Maeve names her price: Calaena is to train her magic
and hone her skills, embracing her destiny as Aelin
Ashryver Galathynius, almighty queen of Terassen.
Meanwhile, Manon, leader of the Thirteen, member of
the blackbeak witch clan is offered the chance to take to
the skies once more, an offer made by none other than
the King of Adarlan.

Overall, I would give this book ★★★★☆; the main
story is well-written, plot twists have you on the edge of
your seat, and the effort put into the writing of the
characters really shows in this book. I finished this book
in around a week or two and I couldn’t put it down. It
was an effort every day to put in the bookmark. I gave
this book four stars because, while it was a superb book,
I still want to leave room for improvement.

Title: Heir of Fire
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Length: 484
Year published: 2014
Age: 13+
Book: #3
Reviewed by: Alex Kingston

Queen of Shadows

Calaena Sardothien is now Aelin Galathynius,
queen of Terassen, and is back in Rifthold hunting down
Arobynn Hamel, her former master; for he stole
something of hers. And she wants it back…


Overall, I would give this book ★★★★★; every
word was well thought out, and this made the excellent
story all the more enticing. The plot was exciting and
had me desperate for more. I thought that the book was
over far too quickly, and the whole time I felt I was
watching a film. I gave this book five stars because, I
gave all the others four stars to leave room for
improvement, but this book, I felt, deserved five stars

Title: Queen of Shadows
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Length: 648 pages
Year published: 2015
Age: 13+
Book: #4
Reviewed by: Alex Kingston

To order head to https://uk.bookshop.org/shop/BookNookHove

About the book

The third instalment to the global #1 bestselling series. As the King of Adarlan’s Assassin, Celaena Sardothien is bound to serve the tyrant who slaughtered her dear friend. But she has vowed to make him pay.

The answers Celaena needs to destroy the king lie across the sea Wendlyn. And Chaol, Captain of the King’s Guard, has put his future in jeopardy to send her there. Yet as Celaena seeks her destiny in Wendlyn, a new threat is preparing to take to the skies.

Will Celaena find the strength not only to win her own battles, but to fight a war that could pit her loyalties to her own people against those she has grown to love?

This third novel in the THRONE OF GLASS sequence, from global #1 bestselling author Sarah J. Maas, is packed with more heart-stopping action, devastating drama and swoonsome romance, and introduces some fierce new heroines to love and hate.

The Last Girl by Goldy Moldavsky, reviewed by Torrin

Goldy Moldavsky has crafted an excellent novel that is deeply rooted in Stephen King, R.L.Stine and John Hughes. It’s a film buff’s dream. And it’s a great book as well.

The story follows Rachel who joins the mysterious Mary Shelley club where she and her new friends challenge each other to more and more daring pranks.

Rachel is a well rounded protagonist with none of the usual headstrong attitudes this kind of character would normally be saddled with. She suffers a deeply scarring incident at the start of the novel which not only shapes her but the story as a whole. Besides Rachel the other characters are written in such a way that they feel like real people which teen novels often struggle to achieve. These teens have motivations and goals that are fitting for someone of their age and also ones that most definitely are not. At the heart of the story is a well rounded and realistic romance which never feels forced and is believable.

The film references peppered throughout made me smile and they also achieved what Ready Player One wishes it could’ve. I adored this book and I thoroughly recommend it! It’s a novel that wears it’s influences proudly and had me totally engaged at all times. This book NEEDS to be read!

Hello, I’m Torrin. I like good books. I’m a fan of Crime, Fantasy and Sci-Fi. My favourite quote from any book is: “Doors are for people with no imagination” If it’s got too much description and emotions, I probably won’t read it. Check out my website at www.ananonymousautistic.wordpress.com   

About the book

Scream meets Gossip Girl with a dash of One of Us is Lying! When it comes to horror movies, the rules are clear:- Avoid abandoned buildings, warehouses, and cabins at all times. – Stay together: don’t split up, not even just to “check something out”…. – If there’s a murderer on the loose, do NOT make out with anyone …

New girl Rachel Chavez turns to horror movies for comfort, preferring them to the bored rich kids of her fancy New York High School. But then Rachel is recruited by the Mary Shelley Club, a mysterious student club that sets up terrifying Fear Tests; elaborate pranks inspired by urban legends and horror movies. But when a sinister masked figure appears, Rachel realises that her past has caught up with her.

It’s time for the ultimate prank to play out … An atmospheric page-turner about loving scary movies, longing to belong, and uncovering the many masks people wear. 

The Boy I Am by K.L. Kettle, reviewed by Mel

Wow. When I read that this book was a dystopian thriller, I didn’t really know what to expect as I’m not the biggest fan of dystopians, yet I am a huge fan of thrillers. The Boy I Am was everything and more you can get from a book. There is an insane amount of plot and character building right from the get go, with carefully placed flashbacks which really let you connect with the main character, Jude Grant, in a way which I find rare in a book. The conflict/battle scenes were detailed on a level similar to The Maze Runner- every scene was clear and I didn’t get confused once. Jude Grant undergoes insane character development throughout this book as his beliefs of the world around him slowly crumble as the reality of the situation is revealed.

Such an interesting and well executed look into different types of power and gender roles.

A fantastic book for anyone who loves plot twists, thrillers, dystopians and fight scenes!!!!

 As I kid I always adored reading, and it was my number one hobby. That filtered away for a bit when I started secondary school, but since getting back into it again over lockdown I haven’t been able to stop. My mums an english teacher, so
she’s always encouraged me to read and help me understand how amazing it is. I am an optimistic, chatty, kind person with a big love for animals and treating the planet kindly. I took Early Modern History, Psychology, and English Lang/Lit (combined) for A level to help myself gain a better understanding of the reasons behind people’s actions

About the book

They say we’re dangerous. But we’re not that different.

Jude is running out of time.

Once a year, lucky young men in the House of Boys are auctioned to the female elite. But if Jude fails to be selected before he turns seventeen, a future deep underground in the mines awaits. Yet ever since the death of his best friend at the hands of the all-powerful Chancellor, Jude has been desperate to escape the path set out for him.

Finding himself entangled in a plot to assassinate the Chancellor, he finally has a chance to avenge his friend and win his freedom. But at what price?

A speculative YA thriller, tackling themes of traditional gender roles and power dynamics, for fans of Malorie Blackman, Louise O’Neill and THE POWER.