Books for younger readers are tricky. Because I have to admit that I review – primarily – for me and others like me, who are a little older, but who like to read books for children. And it is easy to read YA, because we are all 21. Early teen books, also mostly straightforward. But the age group below demands that the book is really pretty good, both for me to review it, and for me to feel that other 21-year-olds (cough) will enjoy it.
(I suspect I’ve just admitted to YA books getting a recommendation, despite them being crap…)
Anyway, Wendy Meddour is someone who writes for young people, while still making the reading fun for the rest of us. I was about to say that if I stop reading Wendy’s books, it would be due to lack of time. But they are fast reads, so will easily fit into a tight reading schedule. (Laying myself wide open, here.)
The Black Cat Detectives feature the children we met in A Hen in the Wardrobe. And apart from being a humorous early crime story, what I like is that it’s got characters who aren’t white, or typically ‘English.’ Not even black, but Asian/Muslim. I’m not one for percentages and quotas, but we really could do with more normal stories about this category of British residents.
OK, soapbox stuff dealt with, so let’s crack on. This is about creepycrawlies and loneliness and online marriage agencies. Ramzi and Shaima want to help Auntie Urooj find a husband, and this being treated in traditional – with a modern twist – style there is no shame in an arranged marriage. Urooj is quite happy with both the idea and with the prospective husband they find online.
But isn’t he a bit fishy? Also, a beetle expert might want a man more sympathetic to the insect world. Ramzi and Shaima need to sort out what’s wrong with this suitor before it’s too late.
Lovely story, and the granny is fantastic! I want to read more about her.