MG Takes on Thursday

This is my weekly meme celebrating amazing middle-grade books. This week I’ve decided to revamp the banner to include the book I’m celebrating.

How to take part:

  • Post a picture of the front cover of a middle-grade book which you have read and would recommend to others with details of the author, illustrator and publisher.
  • Open the book to page 11 and share your favourite sentence. 
  • Write three words to describe the book.
  • Either share why you would recommend this book, or link to your review.

This week, I’m celebrating …

Written by Sylvia Bishop
Illustrated by Flavia Sorrentino
Published by Scholastic

Favourite Sentence from Page 11:

With the bat safely contained, Throgmorton’s School for Girls shook itself, and settled back down to a regular evening.

This book in three words:

MYSTERY, FRIENDSHIP, BATS

The Midnight Thief is a gloriously gripping, action-packed and clever mystery set in a boarding school that kept me enthralled throughout.

Freya is a somewhat reluctant boarder at Throgmorton’s School for Girls.  After a chaotic encounter, with hilarious consequences, with a bat in the out-of-bounds School attic, she meets wildlife-loving twins, Esmie and Daniel who are on an intriguing mission:   to find out why the local bats, who should be hibernating, are waking up in their roosts.  They invite Freya to a midnight meeting which sees her breaking the strict school rules, and sneaking out to help her new friends with their investigation…

However, the next morning Freya wakes to some shocking news:  all seven of the Eldrida Dragons, which belong to Lord Throgmorton, have been stolen.  Who could have taken these priceless artefacts?  And, more worryingly, will the curse which follows the dragons should they be united be unleashed?

Freya finds herself in a race against time to unveil the culprit before her distinguished archaeologist father arrives at the school.  Could her new friends be involved in their disappearance, or could the midnight thief be even closer than she imagines?

So begins an incredibly exciting, page-turning mystery as Freya’s investigations reveal tantalising clues, uncover secrets, and lead to more than one possible suspect, but who has the most to gain by the theft of these precious dragon sculptures? 

I really liked Freya who is a wonderfully curious, determined and quick-thinking young girl who is not averse to breaking rules, but who is also finding it difficult to form friendships in a new environment, an environment into which she has not been welcomed.  Esmie and Daniel are also both incredibly likeable.  Freya first meets them hanging upside down in the school, and they immediately reach out to her, perhaps sensing her loneliness as they are very perceptive, and offer her much-needed friendship.

I LOVED each chapter ending which switches effortlessly to the viewpoint of an animal observing the humans around them.  These very cleverly link to the main plot, but also gave a wonderful insight into animal habits and behaviours.  Absolutely brilliant! 

The full- and partial-page black-and-white illustrations scattered throughout are superb and complement the story perfectly giving a real nostalgic feel and air of mystery.

This is marvellously magical must-read for young, and older, fans of boarding school adventures and mystery with heart-warming friendships, suspects galore and perceptive wildlife! 

Thank you to Harriet Dunlea and Scholastic for an early copy in exchange for my honest opinion.

I’d love if anyone who wants to give this meme a go would comment in the comments box and include a link to your post so I can visit, comment and find some great middle-grade recommendations. If you do create a post and are on Twitter, and would like to share your post, please use the hashtag  #MGTakesOnThursday so I can find it, read it and share it!

8 thoughts on “MG Takes on Thursday

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