Mini Reviews ~ Middle Grade

Posted May 2, 2020 by Stormi in Book Reviews / 2 Comments

Mini Reviews ~ Middle GradeGhost Squad by Claribel A. Ortega
Length: 5 hours and 31 minutes
Genres: Middle Grade
Published by Scholastic on April 7, 2020
Pages: 288
Source: Scribd

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Coco meets Stranger Things with a hint of Ghostbusters in this action-packed supernatural fantasy.For Lucely Luna, ghosts are more than just the family business.
Shortly before Halloween, Lucely and her best friend, Syd, cast a spell that accidentally awakens malicious spirits, wreaking havoc throughout St. Augustine. Together, they must join forces with Syd's witch grandmother, Babette, and her tubby tabby, Chunk, to fight the haunting head-on and reverse the curse to save the town and Lucely's firefly spirits before it's too late.
With the family dynamics of Coco and action-packed adventure of Ghostbusters, Claribel A. Ortega delivers both a thrillingly spooky and delightfully sweet debut novel.

I am so behind on reviews so I am sure you will be seeing a lot of these mash up/mini reviews a lot! 🙂

Ghost Squad was on my most anticipated middle grade list and it didn’t disappoint!

Who you gonna call!?

Lucely can see the ghost of her family and they also reside in the form of fireflies but something is after the fireflies. Lucely and her friend Syd want to try and help by finding a magic spell but they accidently let loose some malevolent spirits and have to get Syd’s grandmother to help them get rid of them.

This was a super cute novel and I loved the friendship dynamics between Lucely and Syd. I absolutely loved Babette who is Syd’s grandmother and she is probably my favorite character. Although I am not a cat person I did love the fact that the cats are named after Goonies characters and Chunk is the main one who helps them with the ghost. The ghostbusting didn’t happen till towards the end but then it totally reminded me of a junior ghostbusters style book.

I think anyone could enjoy this book but I really think young readers will enjoy it. Highly recommend!

Mini Reviews ~ Middle Grade

I received this book for free from Tantor Audio in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Carnevil by J.H. Reynolds, Chris Fenoglio
Length: 2 hours and 37 minutes
Genres: Middle Grade
Published by Katherine Tegen Books on September 3, 2019
Pages: 176
Format: Audiobook
Source: Tantor Audio

Narrator: James Fouhey
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“Fast, funny, frightening—and filled with shocks and surprises. These books are my kind of fun. I want to live on Monsterstreet!” —R.L. Stine, author of the Goosebumps series
In the third Monsterstreet book, a ticket to the scariest carnival in town comes with a price that might cost your life...
When Ren and his younger brother, Kip, are sent to spend Halloween with their aunt Winnie, who runs Old Manor Nursing Home, they’re expecting a boring holiday. But then a strange autumn carnival rolls into town offering them spooky thrills and monstrous delights.
Kip, lured by the magic of the carnival, makes a bargain with the mysterious Tick-Tock Man for unlimited rides. Now Ren has until the end of Halloween night to save his brother or Kip will be trapped in the carnival—forever!
Don't miss any of the books in the thrilling Monsterstreet series!

Also by this author: The Boy Who Cried Werewolf

Ren and his younger brother Kip are sent to their aunts who runs an old manor nursing home figures it’s going to be a boring Halloween but then a carnival shows up overnight. They go to the carnival and Ren has a funny feeling about things and the strange man that is running the place. He offers you tickets for free when you don’t have the money but are they really free?

After arguing with his younger brother Ren leaves Kip at the carnival only to find out that things are not what they seem but is it to late for him to save his brother?

I liked Ren and felt bad for him when he realizes that leaving his brother just resulted in his little brother getting into a lot of trouble that could cost him everything. Ren learns from one of the old people at the nursing home that getting a ticket for free is so not free because that old lady remembers the last time the carnival came to town. It’s a great story about brothers and being willing to sacrifice yourself for your sibling if it would come down to that.

This was a fun read that is in the vain of Goosebumps and I think young readers who enjoy spooky books will like these. I do think out of the three Monsterstreet books I have read that this one is probably the spookiest in terms of content, so do make sure you know the level of spooky your child can handle and maybe read it first to make sure. I do recommend this series as it is just a lot of fun.

Mini Reviews ~ Middle GradeA Field Guide to Getting Lost by Joy McCullough
Length: 4 hours and 7 minutes
Genres: Middle Grade
Published by Atheneum Books for Young Readers on April 14, 2020
Pages: 224
Format: Audiobook
Source: Hoopla

Narrator: Tara Sands
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A girl with a passion for science and a boy who dreams of writing fantasy novels must figure out how to get along now that their parents are dating.
Sutton is having robot problems. Her mini-bot is supposed to be able to get through a maze in under a minute, but she must have gotten something wrong in the coding. Which is frustrating for a science-minded girl like Sutton—almost as frustrating as the fact that her mother probably won’t be home in time for Sutton’s tenth birthday.
Luis spends his days writing thrilling stories about brave kids, but there’s only so much inspiration you can find when you’re stuck inside all day. He’s allergic to bees, afraid of dogs, and has an overprotective mom to boot. So Luis can only dream of daring adventures in the wild.
Sutton and Luis couldn’t be more different from each other. Except now that their parents are dating, these two have to find some common ground. Will they be able to navigate their way down a path they never planned on exploring?

Also by this author: Across the Pond

I had seen this one when I was looking for middle grade books for my anticipated list, it didn’t make the cut but I still kind of wanted to read it and I am so glad I found this on hoopla because it was really cute.

Sutton is a science girl who is trying to code a small robot into doing what she wants it to and getting really frustrated that she can’t figure out a piece of code. Luis loves to write about adventures and doing thrilling things but he can’t do them himself because he is allergic to a lot of things. Then Sutten and Luis find out their parents are dating and sort of get shoved together and have nothing in common. Sutton’s dad wants her to try and get along with his girlfriend and tries making some family get togethers but things don’t go so well.

On one of the outings they decide to go hiking and this will be the most outside time Luis has ever gotten. It turns out to be more of an adventure than he thought it would be when him and Sutton get lost and separated from their parents. During this time of trying to figure out how to get back to the parking lot they find out how to help each other, Sutton using her scientific mind and Luis using his imagination.

It’s told in two povs switching between the two kids and it was fun getting to know both kids and their fears and specialties. I really liked both Sutton and Luis as they both had things about them that made them fun and interesting. It was a great story of discovering your full potential and making new friends. I don’t normally read a lot of contemporary middle grade but I am glad I gave this one a try! I would definitely recommend it.

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2 responses to “Mini Reviews ~ Middle Grade

  1. Stormi

    Ha ha! I don’t read a lot of contemporary either so it surprised me when I seen it on Hoopla and grabbed in and then listened to it pretty much in a day. 🙂

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