2022 Middle Grade Must Reads – July

Frankie Best Hates Quests

  • Written by Chris Smith
  • Published by Puffin 

Last week I had my 2 favourite books of 2022 clearly in my mind, and I was confident that nothing was going to knock them off there spot.

That was until I picked up this book, now don’t get me wrong the other two books are still my favourites but they have been joined by this gem. So now I have 3 favourite reads of 2022.

This book was amazing to read quietly to myself and even better to read out loud. 

Apparently according to my oldest child the main character sounds like me when I speak, well I’l take that as a compliment. There is so much expression in this story that it’s a joy to read, you are able to change the tone of your voice, and more than once I found my arms wavering around like mad as I got into character. The main character Frankie is a sheer joy and she has some of the best one liners.

Frankie and her brother Joel are staying with their grandfather when he is kidnapped by something that come out of the mirror. So of course they follow him through to rescue him.

This has a fabulous cast of characters including a justice who keeps law and order and suffers from terrible seasickness -the scenes on the ship are hilarious. 

But my favourite characters have to be the shopkeeper and her son who are obsessed with Pot Noddles.

This book will have you laughing, smirking and you will struggle to put it down. 

I only hope the author is planning to write book 2.

Greta and the Ghost Hunters

  • Written by Sam Copeland
  • Illustrations by Sarah Horne
  • Published by Puffin

I absolutely adored this book.

Telling the story of Greta who is recovering from being hit by car, we discover she lives in a house fall of ghosts and she can now hear them. She is battling to stop her parents putting her beloved grandmother in a nursing home.  So its handy that one of the ghosts is her grandfather. There is also Percy a young boy from the Victorian age. Oh and Wolfgang who has a talking rat as a pet.

I read this out loud to my children and I personally believe this book deserves to be read out load. There is so much expression used and you can’t help but wave your arms around while reading. 

My favourite character has to be granddad and I really enjoyed reading his part. 

There are so many funny bits that will have you giggling, I especially loved Wolfgang explaining how is aunts died, and Percy plays a game called stick push a poo which is exactly what it says, I really couldn’t keep a straight face.

This will definitely be in my top 10 books of 2022.

The Riddle of the Sea

  • Written by Jonne Kramer
  • Published by Piccadilly Press

Like you I always read the back of the book first, then I decide where in my to be read pile it needs to go, well I decided it needed to be right at the top because it sounded so interesting. 

So when I settled down in bed and read the first line it hooked me straight in and I know I wanted to read it straight away, so I did.

The book starts off at a nice easy pace, getting to know the background story,  meeting the main character then suddenly before you know what has happened you find yourself in the middle of a mystery, then your off on an adventure. Then you meet two characters who are both interesting, funny and then before you know what has happened you realise that your so engrossed in the book you haven’t noticed the time, and you should really be asleep because you have a really busy day the next day going on a school trip with 60 four year olds.

Of course you need a favourite character and mine is Captain Banks, now he should be the baddie of this story but really all he is is a grumpy lonely man who really cares for the boys, he has some of my lines in the book. 

This book is 300 of sheer joy, and I’m pretty sure this will be in my top ten of 2022.

A beginners Guide to Ruling the Galaxy

  • Written by David Solomons
  • Published by Nosy Crow on 7th July 2022

This is one of 2022 must read books.

Gavin thinks that there is something strange about new girl Niki. She knows it all, she is far cleverer than anyone else and she says she’s a princess. She has a strange relationship with her “brother, “ oh and she is desperate to dissect a class mate in a science lesson. 

She’s definitely getting on Gavin’s nerves.

I’m not going to spoil the plot but you definitely need to read this book. I loved the pairing of Niki and Gavin, I thought they were a great double act. I found it interesting that Gavin was in foster care and how worried he was about the possibility of having to move again, it was interesting to see life from his point of view, and how Niki really didn’t understand.

I decided to start this book while sitting at a park while my two children played,  I’d only got to page 4 before I was laughing out loud. My boys gave me a look as to say your embarrassing us, I did really try to stop laughing but I couldn’t help myself as I got more into the book it got funnier and funnier.

Now by the time I’m half way through I’m laughing so much that my boys asked to go home. I know of some David Solomon fans at my primary school who will be desperate to get there hands on this.

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