Turns Out Middle Grade Books Are Easy To Get Through

I’m moving house in a couple of weeks, back to university. As I’ve been looking at my TBR list, I realised that I had a number of middle grade books in large series that I didn’t particularly want to take back with me, so I am trying to read them before I move. Hence why for the next couple of weeks I will be predominantly reading middle grade books. Unsurprisingly these books are quick to read given that they are aimed at a younger audience (though they are no means less enjoyable), so this week’s reading wrap up is quite a bit longer than I was expecting!

What I Read

The Lightning Thief

Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan

Percy Jackson is a good kid, but he can’t seem to focus on his schoolwork or control his temper. And lately, being away at boarding school is only getting worse. Percy could have sworn his pre-algebra teacher turned into a monster and tried to kill him.

When Percy’s mom finds out, she knows it’s time that he knew the truth about where he came from, and that he go to the one place he’ll be safe. She sends Percy to Camp Half Blood, a summer camp for demigods (on Long Island), where he learns that the father he never knew is Poseidon, God of the Sea.

Soon a mystery unfolds and together with his friends — one a satyr and the other the demigod daughter of Athena — Percy sets out on a quest across the United States to reach the gates of the Underworld (located in a recording studio in Hollywood) and prevent a catastrophic war between the gods.

There isn’t a lot to say about this book. It’s a Percy Jackson. It’s good. If you haven’t read it yet, what are you doing with your life?

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Terrible Tudors

Terrible Tudors by Terry Deary & Neil Tonge

Readers can discover all the foul facts about the TERRIBLE TUDORS, including why Henry VIII thought he’d married a horse, all about terrible Tudor torture and which shocking swear words the Tudors used. 

Rating: 3 out of 5.

The Sea of Monsters

Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan

After a year spent trying to prevent a catastrophic war among the Greek gods, Percy Jackson finds his seventh-grade school year unnervingly quiet. His biggest problem is dealing with his new friend, Tyson–a six-foot-three, mentally challenged homeless kid who follows Percy everywhere, making it hard for Percy to have any “normal” friends.

But things don’t stay quiet for long. Percy soon discovers there is trouble at Camp Half-Blood: The magical borders which protect Half-Blood Hill have been poisoned by a mysterious enemy, and the only safe haven for demigods is on the verge of being overrun by mythological monsters. To save the camp, Percy needs the help of his best friend, Grover, who has been taken prisoner by the Cyclops Polyphemus on an island somewhere in the Sea of Monsters–the dangerous waters Greek heroes have sailed for millenia–only today, the Sea of Monsters goes by a new name…the Bermuda Triangle.

Now Percy and his friends–Grover, Annabeth, and Tyson–must retrieve the Golden Fleece from the Island of the Cyclopes by the end of the summer or Camp Half-Blood will be destroyed. But first, Percy will learn a stunning new secret about his family–one that makes him question whether being claimed as Poseidon’s son is an honor or simply a cruel joke.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Slimy Stuarts

Slimy Stuarts by Terry Deary

Rating: 3 out of 5.

The Titan’s Curse

Percy Jackson and the Titan's Curse by Rick Riordan

IT’S NOT EVERYDAY YOU FIND YOURSELF IN COMBAT WITH A HALF-LION, HALF-HUMAN.

But when you’re the son of a Greek god, it happens. And now my friend Annabeth is missing, a goddess is in chains and only five half-blood heroes can join the quest to defeat the doomsday monster.

Oh, and guess what? The Oracle has predicted that not all of us will survive…

Rating: 3 out of 5.

How To Be An Antiracist

How To Be An Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi

Ibram X. Kendi’s concept of antiracism reenergizes and reshapes the conversation about racial justice in America–but even more fundamentally, points us toward liberating new ways of thinking about ourselves and each other. In How to be an Antiracist, Kendi asks us to think about what an antiracist society might look like, and how we can play an active role in building it.

In this book, Kendi weaves together an electrifying combination of ethics, history, law, and science, bringing it all together with an engaging personal narrative of his own awakening to antiracism. How to Be an Antiracist is an essential work for anyone who wants to go beyond an awareness of racism to the next step: contributing to the formation of a truly just and equitable society. 

I thought this book was quite thought provoking and raised a lot of ideas that I had heard about a little and provided more depth to them with examples provided from Kendi’s life. This book raised a lot of things that I wanted to think about more deeply so I read it over a week, taking time to analyse the ideas and apply them to British culture. My only criticism would be that the definitions at the start of chapters can be confusing, but are more clearly explained throughout the chapter. I recommend this book to anyone who want to be an anti-racist.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Gorgeous Georgians

Gorgeous Georgians by Terry Deary

Rating: 3 out of 5.

What I Am Currently Reading

The Battle Of The Labyrinth

Percy Jackson and the Battle Of The Labyrinth by Rick Riordan

Percy Jackson isn’t expecting freshman orientation to be any fun. But when a mysterious mortal acquaintance appears at his potential new school, followed by demon cheerleaders, things quickly move from bad to worse.

In this fourth installment of the blockbuster series, time is running out as war between the Olympians and the evil Titan lord Kronos draws near. Even the safe haven of Camp Half-Blood grows more vulnerable by the minute as Kronos’s army prepares to invade its once impenetrable borders. To stop the invasion, Percy and his demigod friends must set out on a quest through the Labyrinth – a sprawling underground world with stunning surprises at every turn.

The Complete Sherlock Holmes

The Complete Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle

Ever since he made his first appearance in A Study In Scarlet, Sherlock Holmes has enthralled and delighted millions of fans throughout the world. Now Audible is proud to present Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes, read by Stephen Fry. A lifelong fan of Doyle’s detective fiction, Fry has narrated a striking collection of Sherlock Holmes mysteries, including four novels and four collections of short stories. And, exclusively for Audible, Stephen has written and narrated eight insightful, intimate and deeply personal introductions, one for each title.
He writes: “Popular fiction offers different kinds of superheroes to save the world by restoring order to the chaos, confusion and criminality of our times. Heroes with remarkable gifts are as in vogue now as they have been since they first appeared, perhaps even more in vogue. But although the very first one was launched in serial published form just like his masked and body-suited successors, it was not in DC or Marvel comic books that he made his appearance; rather it was in the sedate and respectable pages of Mrs Beeton’s Christmas Annual in the mid-Victorian year 1887.

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