Monthly Archives: May 2014

Book 12 – Guardian Angel

“Guardian Angel” – Book 2 in the Aramov/CHERUB series by Robert Muchamore (2012)

I have written many blog posts about Robert Muchamore’s books. It all started with “The Recruit”, published ten years ago, in 2004. It was recommended to me and after reading it I purchased a class set for my last school. As soon as I arrived at my current school I added a class set to the book room there. I have taught the novel 7 or 8 times and am teaching it right now, to my wonderful year 7 class. They are absolutely loving it and my copies of the rest of the series are getting a good work out, yet again. In fact, some of the boys in my current class have completely devoured the other 12 books in the series in record time and are happily reading them a second time!

“Guardian Angel” is 15 books later, as the second book in the second series of the CHERUB books. This second series started with “People’s Republic” and so far there two more books to be read, which I need to get my hands on. Further to these two outstanding series of books, Muchamore has also written a series of books about the beginnings of CHERUB, called The Henderson Boys. There are 7 books in that series. All of these books have the children’s spy organisation, CHERUB at their core. In August, Muchamore will publish a new book that is not about CHERUB. Now that will be interesting…

There is little point in giving too much detail about this book. Unless you read “People’s Republic” this book won’t make much sense. What I can tell you is that the 3 books in this series focus on the story of a clan of Russian criminals and the adventures that lead to their downfall. I can also tell you that Muchamore has a real skill for drawing young adult readers in and giving them an authentic and engaging read. I have never had anywhere near the success with any novel in my classroom as I routinely do with “The Recruit”. “Guardian Angel” was extremely satisfying and kept on drawing me back, even though it’s been a very hectic week.

If you are a fan of YA fiction, teach in high school, or have 10-15 year olds to buy for… get yourself into a book store and discover the fantastic world of Muchamore books.

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Book 11 – The Battle of the Sun

“The Battle of the Sun” by Jeanette Winterson (2009)

The world of reading is a curious place. In late 2011, my friend Brett asked me to read “Art and Lies” by Jeanette Winterson. I purchased it, but it took me another year to read it (Book 1, 2013). I wasn’t really all that fussed on the book, and felt a little guilty for not loving it, as I know Brett did.

Good news, Brett! I love Winterson now! This book, it turns out, is a sort of sequel to a book called “Tanglewreck” and normally I would be horrified to read a book out of order, but I really don’t think it mattered with this one.

It all started in one of my year 7 lessons, late last term. One of the boys had finished his work and was reading. He put his book down and gave a very satisfied sigh. Then he leapt up from his seat and brought the book to me. “Oh, Miss, this book was very good. You should read it.” If you read this blog regularly, you know what my response was…

I loved this book. It is the story of young Jack, a boy of 12, living in London in 1601. He thinks he is an ordinary boy, but then magic comes into his life and nothing is quite as it seems. A magus wants to turn the city into gold, and it is up to Jack to discover his own power or all will be doomed.

There is a wonderfully whacky but believable tone to this book and I thoroughly recommend it for the 9-12 age bracket ( or 9-99, which is more accurate).

Now I need to get my hands on “Tanglewreck”.

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