BOOKS FOR CHILDREN: How do you know what's good?

While there are many places (especially on the internet) where you can read book reviews, how do you really know if it's a good book or not when a single book might receive anywhere from one to five stars?
The answer: read the reviews of a book-addicted teacher librarian.

** The age recommendations are guidelines only; whether or not a certain book is suitable for a particular child depends on multiple factors, including their maturity, reading level, interests, and in some cases their experiences.
** While the ratings are largely based on my own personal appreciation/enjoyment of the book, they are also influenced by my experiences as a teacher and the potential attraction for the target-aged child (acknowledging that what one child may love, another may find exceptionally boring). A rating of 5 indicates the book is likely to be popular with the majority.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Series: Frankie Fox, Girl Spy (Jnr Fic)

AUTHOR: Yvette Poshoglian (Aust)
PUBLISHED: Lothian Children's, c2014.
PAGES/ILL: 121 pages, ill.
SERIES: Frankie Fox, Girl Spy
FIRST BOOK: Ready, Steady, Spy!

PLOT: (Ready, Steady, Spy!)
Frankie Fox, daughter of millionaire inventor Fergus Fox, is sure there are strange things happening around her house. Someone's been in her room, her new bus driver is suspicious, and why is her science teacher teaching her how to diffuse a bomb?
When her father is kidnapped, she discovers an amazing secret - she is a spy! Along with her next door neighbour, she becomes a member of Griffin, a secret organisation intent on taking down the evil Alliance and protecting the world's freedom.

This book is sure to appeal to young girls (and boys, but girls will be the main audience) who are just starting to move into longer chapter books. To the book's credit, problems are not resolved within a chapter, and the reader is encouraged to solve the clues along with Frankie.

There are some holes in the story and some parts could use rewording, but overall it's a good story for young girls.

AGE: 6-10.
GENRE: Spy stories
RATING: 3 1/2 - 4 stars.

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