Review: S.T.A.G.S

cover-STAGSTitle: S.T.A.G.S
Author: M.A. Bennett
Series: – –
Genre: YA Thriller
Length: Novel
Available: 10th August

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Nine students. Three bloodsports. One deadly weekend.

A twisting thriller for fans of Looking for Alaska and The Hunger Games

It is the autumn term and Greer MacDonald is struggling to settle into the sixth form at the exclusive St. Aidan the Great boarding school, known to its privileged pupils as S.T.A.G.S. Just when she despairs of making friends Greer receives a mysterious invitation with three words embossed upon on it: huntin’ shootin’ fishin’. When Greer learns that the invitation is to spend the half term weekend at the country manor of Henry de Warlencourt, the most popular and wealthy boy at S.T.A.G.S., she is as surprised as she is flattered.

But when Greer joins the other chosen few at the ancient and sprawling Longcross Hall, she realises that Henry’s parents are not at home; the only adults present are a cohort of eerily compliant servants. The students are at the mercy of their capricious host, and, over the next three days, as the three bloodsports – hunting, shooting and fishing – become increasingly dark and twisted, Greer comes to the horrifying realisation that those being hunted are not wild game, but the very misfits Henry has brought with him from school…


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Review: Chase

cover-chaseTitle: Chase
Author: Linwood Barclay
Series: Chase #1
Genre: Children’s Thriller
Age Range: 9+
Available: Now

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The Incredible Journey meets Gordon Korman’s On the Run in this exciting middle-grade thriller.

Chipper is a very special dog. He’s part of a multi-million dollar experiment at a secret organization known only as The Institute. The Institute has been experimenting with dogs, melding them with state-of-the-art computer technology. But there’s a problem with Chipper. His natural dog instincts often overrule his computer side. No matter what he’s doing, if he sees a squirrel or a mouse, he’ll drop everything to chase it. So The Institute has decided it’s time to pull the plug on Chipper. Chipper manages a daring escape with a destination in mind, but a team from the Institute, led by the cold-hearted Daggert, is hot on his heels.

Twelve-year-old Jeff Conroy lives with his aunt and helps run her business, a lakeside cabin-rental operation that caters to fishermen. Jeff desperately misses his parents, who were killed in a plane crash a year earlier. But at least he’s made one friend: Emily, whose ex-cop father owns a similar business down the lake. And Emily, a computer whiz, has the coolest fort ever: a trackless, abandoned train station in the middle of the forest.

After eluding his would-be captors, Chipper boards a bus and ends up in the country, only to be hit by a truck that Jeff is driving (underage). Jeff takes Chipper to the train station to nurse him back to health, and it’s here that he and Emily discover a computer port in Chipper’s collar, and once Emily hooks her laptop to it, she and Jeff discovers that Chipper’s arrival is not random. He has been looking for Jeff — and now so is Daggert …


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Review: Welcome to the Jungle

cover-welcome to the jungleTitle: Welcome to the Jungle
Author: Hacker Murphy
Illustrator: Lucie Ebrey
Series: Creeper Files #2
Age Range: 9+
Available: Now

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Mother Nature has never been creepier.

EXCLUSIVE: Investigator Hacker Murphy makes Creeper Files, detailing the nefarious activities of the most evil man/plant ever known, available for the first time. Hacker Murphy is chasing a story about a green-fingered villain who calls himself The Creeper, and these are his latest case files.

The Creeper is back, and this time he’s REALLY angry. His has complete control over all things green, and this time the gardening gloves are off! Warning: The Plantocalypse is about to begin.


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Review: The Root of All Evil

cover-root of all evilTitle: The Root of All Evil
Author: Hacker Murphy
Illustrator: Lucie Ebrey
Series: Creeper Files #1
Age Range: 9+
Available: Now

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EXCLUSIVE: Investigator Hacker Murphy makes Creeper Files, detailing the nefarious activities of the most evil man/plant ever known, available for the first time.

There’s evil on the loose. Jake’s dog knows there’s a problem: why won’t he go into the garden on his own? Jake’s friends know there’s a problem: who’s the strange figure lurking in their garden? Jake knows there’s a problem: what is the terrifying viney creature he is running away from?! Jake’s mum has no idea there’s a problem: she’s a grown-up, you know what they’re like.

You’ll never look at a potato in the same way again …Perfect for fans of Doctor Who and Scooby Doo.


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Review: Sky Thieves

cover-sky thievesTitle: Sky Thieves
Author: Dan Walker
Series: Sky Thieves #1
Genre: Children’s/MG Fantasy
Age Range: 11+
Available: Now

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Love Pirates of the Caribbean? Then prepared to be swept away by this new swashbuckling adventure series.

Talented debut author, Dan Walker, creates an imaginative world where thieves sail the skies in flying galleons-an action-packed adventure of epic scale.

Zoya DeLarose has no idea her life is about to change forever when a band of sky thieves ‘steal’ her away from her orphanage, landing up in the clouds, on board the Dragonfly’s deck. There, Zoya discovers a world of meteorite storms, sword fights, midnight raids, floating islands, and long lost treasure. But with a deadly enemy closing in, will Zoya find the strength to face her fears and unlock the key to her destiny, or will she fall from the skies with no one left to break her fall?


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Review: Flame in the Mist

cover-flame in the mistTitle: Flame in the Mist
Author: Renée Ahdieh
Series: Flame in the Mist #1
Genre: YA Fantasy
Length: Novel
Available: Now

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From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Wrath and the Dawn, comes a sweeping, action-packed YA adventure set against the backdrop of Feudal Japan.

Mariko has always known that being a woman means she’s not in control of her own fate. But Mariko is the daughter of a prominent samurai and a cunning alchemist in her own right, and she refuses to be ignored. When she is ambushed by a group of bandits known as the Black Clan enroute to a political marriage to Minamoto Raiden – the emperor’s son – Mariko realises she has two choices: she can wait to be rescued… or she can take matters into her own hands, hunt down the clan and find the person who wants her dead.

Disguising herself as a peasant boy, Mariko infiltrates the Black Clan’s hideout and befriends their leader, the rebel ronin Ranmaru, and his second-in-command, Okami. Ranmaru and Okami warm to Mariko, impressed by her intellect and ingenuity. But as Mariko gets closer to the Black Clan, she uncovers a dark history of secrets that will force her to question everything she’s ever known.


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Review: Spellslinger

cover-spellslingerTitle: Spellslinger
Author: Sebastien de Castell
Series: Spellslinger #1
Genre: YA Fantasy
Length: Novel
Available: Now

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MAGIC IS A CON GAME.

Kellen is moments away from facing his first mage’s duel and the start of four trials that will make him a spellcaster. There’s just one problem: his magic is gone.

As his sixteenth birthday approaches, Kellen falls back on his cunning in a bid to avoid total disgrace. But when a daring stranger arrives in town, she challenges Kellen to take a different path.

Ferius Parfax is one of the mysterious Argosi – a traveller who lives by her wits and the three decks of cards she carries. She’s difficult and unpredictable, but she may be Kellen’s only hope…

The first in a rich and compelling fantasy series bursting with tricks, traps and a devious talking squirrel cat. Perfect for fans of THE DARK TOWER, FIREFLY, GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY, TERRY PRATCHETT, BEN AARONOVITCH and JIM BUTCHER.


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