Marginalised from her peers by consequence of her ardent interest in spies, Tasha falls easy prey to Henry, the new boy who, after a confusion of notebooks, reveals himself to be operating on behalf of a secret governmental organisation. Having succeeded in securing Tasha’s confidence, Henry uses her bedroom as a vantage point for surveillance on his alleged mission.
Exploration of the effects of chance and caprice feels familiar territory to Michael Lawrence. Following on from consideration that is firmly rooted in the philosophical consequences of the decisions and choices we each of us play out in ‘The Aldous Lexicon’, Lawrence writes with a humorous frivolity that is immediately accessible and, at points, feels to be reaction against the depths and intricacies of ‘The Underwood See’.
St Sebastian’s School in Grimesford had the misfortune to be built upon a Mediaeval plague pit. Throughout the series, a veritable medley of ghosts and ghouls manifest themselves within the school and, in this, the first book, it is the girl’s toilets that is the primary target.
In ‘XY – a toolkit for life’, Matt Whyman achieved that rare balance of finding a chatty and informal voice and means for communicating information about puberty ‘ the bits that everyone wants to know but that few feel comfortable in asking, or by turns in answering.
Pithy and packing a considerable punch to the solar-plexus, Catherine MacPhail’s latest novel explores gang mentalities and the often fickle sense of ethics and allegiance that accompany these. Coursing beneath this is an intricate network of character exposition and story strands that serve to stimulate much debate and consideration into social class and the status and stereotyping that is assumed around this.
Elizabeth Singer Hunt
Continuing his missions with the GPF (the Global Protection Force), and in so doing desperately seeking information concerning the current whereabouts of missing elder brother Max, Jack Stalwart is called to Kenya to protect the African Elephants which have been being slaughtered as part of elicit ivory trading.
Anne Fine, ill. Philippe Dupasquier