MG Takes on Thursday

This is my weekly meme celebrating amazing middle-grade books, now with a re-vamped banner!

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 Christopher Edge
Cover Illustration by Matt Saunders
Published by Nosy Crow

Favourite Sentence from Page 11:

In it [Scouting for Boys], there’s this story about how some soldiers left secret messages near landmarks like trees to keep them hidden from the enemy.

This book in three words:

MYSTERY, SPINE-TINGLING, TIME

I’ve started seeing proofs arrive for the next Christopher Edge book, Escape Room, on Twitter, and it made me think about what a fantastic writer he is. The first book I read by him was The Infinite Lives of Maisie Day which absolutely blew me away. However, the book I am recommending today is The Longest Night of Charlie Noon. There is so much packed into a short story.

MY REVIEW

If you are brave enough to enter these woods … you will be utterly mesmerised as you are taken on the most intriguing journey full of twists, puzzles and incredible mind-blowing discoveries!  This is a book that is perfect for a one-sitting read and epitomises the phrase ‘page-turner’. 

With two references to time in the title, I feel the story offers a fascinating exploration of concepts in time which made me think of the Mobius Time Loop.  When and where in time are the three children?  There is so much to explore, but I don’t want to give anything away – suffice to say, nothing is ever as it seems!

One afternoon, three children get lost in the woods … and find a seemingly endless night!  Johnny is the bully; Charlie is the new kid in town; and Dizzy, a polio survivor, is Charlie’s only friend. 

Curiosity leads two of the friends into the woods … and Johnny follows.  Dizzy has seen sticks arranged into a secret code the previous day and wants his friend to help solve the mystery!  Johnny tells them Old Crony lives in the woods and he is someone to be feared.  The children’s heightened anticipation of Old Crony, together with the inspired use of sights and sounds, creates a real sense of foreboding with palpable fear building, leading to frantic and desperate actions as the children try desperately to run from their fear and their fate …

I found the woods both horrifying and fascinating, almost like a living entity, driven with an inexorable purpose for the children, a purpose that once realised left me stunned and in awe of the story-telling. 

Incredible heart-stopping moments, spine-tingling twists, and seeming impossibilities made me desperate to keep reading.  For me, the use of cliff hangers at the end of most of the chapters makes it the perfect classroom read! 

This is a perfect spine-tingler of a story which took me on the most incredible journey of exploration and discovery!

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!

2 thoughts on “MG Takes on Thursday

  1. First of all, Christopher Edge is a genius…everything he has written has been pure gold, as far as I’m concerned. The Longest Night of Charlie Noon was just my kind of thing. Yes…I agree. Everything you said and more.

    Liked by 1 person

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