Title: Murder on a School Night

Author: Kate Weston

Pages: 384 Pages

Publisher: Electric Monkey

The Blurb

There’s never a good time to find a dead body. But finding a dead body while you’re trying to kiss your crush?

Dead awkward.

All Kerry wants to do is stay at home with her rom-coms and strict retainer schedule. Instead, her BFF Annie has roped her into going to their first sixth-form party to investigate who’s cyberbullying Heather, the most popular girl in school.

On the cusp of kissing her dreamy crush, Scott, Kerry discovers the body of Heather’s second in command – suffocated with a menstrual cup. Within days, another student turns up dead, this time with a sanitary pad across the eyes. Now Annie and Kerry are officially on the case to stop the menstrual murderer . . . period.

The Review

I am a fan of Kate Weston. I read her Diary of a Confused Feminist a few years ago and I laughed a lot. Weston writes like a modern day Louise Rennison and creates brilliant female characters.

In her new story Murder on a School Night, best friends Kerry and Annie set about trying to solve a local murder and outwit the inept police. However, trying to solve crime and survive high school isn’t that easy.

Murder on a School Night is a laugh-out-loud hilarious book that does not hold back on the teenage vernacular – this book does not patronise its readers.

A brilliant story!

Murder on a School Night by Kate Weston is available now.

For more information regarding Kate Weston (@kateeliweston) please visit her Twitter page.

Title: As Good as Dead

Author: Holly Jackson

Pages: 576 Pages

Publisher: Electric Monkey

The Blurb

THE THIRD AND FINAL THRILLING BOOK IN THE BESTSELLING AND AWARD-WINNING A GOOD GIRL’S GUIDE TO MURDER TRILOGY

A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder is The New York Times No.1 bestselling YA crime thriller and WINNER of The British Book Awards’ Children’s Book of the Year 2020 and shortlisted for the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize 2020

Pip Fitz-Amobi is haunted by the way her last investigation ended. Soon she’ll be leaving for Cambridge University but then another case finds her . . . and this time it’s all about Pip.

Pip is used to online death threats, but there’s one that catches her eye, someone who keeps asking: who will look for you when you’re the one who disappears? And it’s not just online. Pip has a stalker who knows where she lives. The police refuse to act and then Pip finds connections between her stalker and a local serial killer. The killer has been in prison for six years, but Pip suspects that the wrong man is behind bars. As the deadly game plays out, Pip realises that everything in Little Kilton is finally coming full circle. If Pip doesn’t find the answers, this time she will be the one who disappears . . .

A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder is The New York Times No.1 bestselling YA crime thriller and WINNER of The British Book Awards’ Children’s Book of the Year 2020.

SHORTLISTED FOR THE WATERSTONES CHILDREN’S BOOK PRIZE 2020

Perfect for fans of One of Us Is Lying, Eva Dolan, C L Taylor, We Were Liars and Riverdale

The Review

Wow. What a ride.

The A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder Series by Holly Jackson has been an edge of the seat page turner from the very first book. We have followed crime solver and enthusiast Pip Fitz-Amobi as she uncovers crime after crime and somehow manages to get herself involved in the drama putting herself and the ones she loves in danger.

In this gripping final installment we see just how good a detective Pip is – and to be fair just how brilliant a writer Holly Jackson. Jackson has led you to believe from book one that some of her red herrings are just that – clues that lead to nowhere but oh no. Jackson was setting up plot points for book three As Good As Dead. When this happened in the story I physically had to lower the book and just shook my head in disbelief at how cleverly this series has been written. I mean wow.

If crime is your thing then As Good as Dead along with the other books in this series are the books for you.

As Good as Dead by Holly Jackson is available now.

For more information regarding Holly Jackson (@HoJay92) please visit her Twitter page.

For more information regarding Electric Monkey (@EMTeenFiction) please visit their Twitter page.

Title: This Can Never Not Be Real

Author: Sera Milano

Pages: 352 Pages

Publisher: Egmont Books/Electric Monkey

The Blurb

A compelling, heartbreaking and hopeful book for fans of Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine, Jennifer Niven and Holly Jackson.

In the unremarkable town of Amberside, the unthinkable has happened: Terrorists have attacked a local festival. No one knows why, and no one knows who the attackers are, but that doesn’t matter. What matters first is survival. And what matters after that is survival, too.

In this brilliantly written account of hope, humour and humanity, five ordinary teenagers are caught up in a truly extraordinary situation. It’s a heart-pounding and gripping account of the fight for survival as the attackers prowl the festival grounds, told from multiple perspectives.

This is a book for anyone facing the barrage of bleak reports that fill our newsfeeds and for anyone who needs to see that behind the hate that makes the headlines, there is always love.

The Review

I won’t lie to you, I am a traditionalist when it comes to literature. I like it to be narrative, speech marks, proper punctuation – the whole shebang and normally when a book veers away from this I get frustrated. However, with This Can Never Not Be Real I was able to get past the non-traditional format because the story is so damn good.

It is a story of a terrorist attack that happens during a local festival in a small town and it is told from the perspective of several people. It is told in what can almost be described as soundbites of information interspersed with police reporting. The style is similar in style to how you feel an interrogation would go but also shows how one event can be experienced by several different people in many different ways.

What it also does is highlight underlying prejudices and challenges them. It shows how communities – big or small – can be brought together through tragedy and how powerful the shared experience is.

I thoroughly recommend This Can Never Not Be Real and will be foisting it into the hands of the students I work with whether they want to read it or not.

This Can Never Not Be Real by Sera Milano is available now.

For more information regarding Sera Milano (@seramilano) please visit www.seramilano.com.

For more information regarding Electric Monkey (@EMTeenFiction) please visit their Twitter page.

Title: Things the Eye Can’t See

Author: Penny Joelson

Pages: 304 Pages

Publisher: Electric Monkey/Egmont

The Blurb

The thrilling new novel from the award-winning author of I Have No Secrets.

A chance meeting and a secret message drags Libby into a thrilling mystery, but no one believes she can spot the clues. Can she make them realise what she is really capable of, before it’s too late?

Libby is visually impaired but that doesn’t stop her being a keen photographer. She loves going out walking with her guide dog, Samson, and taking photos, but her family worry about her – and Libby wishes she could be more independent.

The day that the boy gives her a secret note to deliver changes everything. Because soon after, the boy goes missing, and no one – except Libby and her new friend Kyle – thinks there is anything to worry about.

Libby knows there’s no way her parents would let her get involved. But what if she’s the only person who can solve the mystery…?

A compulsive page-turner for readers aged 12 and up.

The Review

I love books that have what is seen as diverse characters. What I don’t like about books is that people are often seen as being diverse characters. Confused? Let me explain. Things The Eye Can’t See is the story of Libby and how she gets embroiled in a mystery which she then has to help solve to save her friends. So far so normal as plots go. The diverse factor is that Libby is partially sighted. 

This rant is not against Penny Joelson, if anything Penny Joelson is part of the solution and not part of the problem. Disability is seen as diversifying a character rather than seen as the norm. What Joelson does fantastically well in Things The Eye Can’t See is address some of the preconceptions about visual impairment which often lead to prejudices. It isn’t seen as “normal” for a visually impaired character be able to solve a crime mystery. It is due to this fact that Joelson should really get more credit for her writing. 

Besides the disability factor Things The Eye Can’t See is a great story of the difficulties of growing up. About how friendships can drift when boys come and go. How school life can be difficult. How people come from different socio-economic backgrounds. All of this is wrapped up in the terrifying bow of gang culture and crime. What more could you want from a story?

I really enjoyed reading Things The Eye Can’t See. Joelson accurately captures the voice of the teenager. The worries that they have and the inability to admit that they need help from a grown up. She really has managed to capture something special with this novel.

Things the Eye Can’t See by Penny Joelson is available now.

For more information regarding Penny Joelson (@pennyjoelson) please visit www.pennyjoelson.co.uk.

For more information regarding Electric Monkey (@EMTeenFiction) please visit the Twitter page.

Title: The Love Hypothesis

Author: Laura Steven

Pages: 297 Pages

Publisher: Electric Monkey/Egmont Publishing

The Blurb

An LGBT romantic comedy with a twist from the Comedy Women in Print prize winner Laura Steven, author of The Exact Opposite of Okay. A hilarious love story with bite, for fans of Sex Education, Booksmart, Becky Albertalli’s Love, Simon and Jenny Han’s To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before.

Physics genius Caro Kerber-Murphy knows she’s smart. With straight As and a college scholarship already in the bag, she’s meeting her two dads’ colossal expectations and then some. But there’s one test she’s never quite been able to ace: love. And when, in a particularly desperate moment, Caro discovers a (definitely questionable) scientific breakthrough that promises to make you irresistible to everyone around you, she wonders if this could be the key.

What happens next will change everything Caro thought she knew about chemistry – in the lab and in love. Is hot guy Haruki with her of his own free will? Are her feelings for her best friend Keiko some sort of side-effect? Will her dog, Sirius, ever stop humping her leg?

The Review

So in high school I was pretty nerdy. I didn’t mind and to be fair people didn’t make anything of it. It was at a time when being nerdy wasn’t considered the cook cache that it is nowadays. I worked in the library, I was slightly chubby and I had flaming red hair. I was – what some people would ironically call – a catch. The reason I am giving you this potted history is because if I had been told during my formative years that  I could take a pill that would make people be attracted to me then hell yes I would have done it. No questions asked.

This is the same for protagonist Caro Kerber-Murphy. She doesn’t feel like she compares to her two best friends who are interesting and beautiful. She fails to get noticed. If she were a colour it would be beige. Ecru at a push. When she finds an advert for a medically approved drug that can make people fall in love with you she jumps on it. Little does she realise that the consequences can be quite damaging.

I really enjoyed reading about Caro and her friends. I loved the inner turmoil that she goes through and how she really just wants to be noticed. I love how Steven used her back story to justify the way she was feeling without ramming it down the reader’s throats. Steven has shown in The Love Hypothesis and in her previous books how she trusts her readers to be able to understand things without spelling them out. As a reader, I appreciate that.

The Love Hypothesis also makes you remember just what falling in love for the first time feels like. It is a thoroughly enjoyable read and one that you can finish in one sitting.

The Love Hypothesis by Laura Steven is available now.

For more information regarding Laura Steven (@LauraSteven) please visit www.laura-steven.com.

For more information regarding Electric Monkey (@EMTeenFiction) please visit www.egmont.co.uk.

For more information regarding Egmont Publishing (@EgmontUK) please visit www.egmont.co.uk.