Genre: Romance/ Family

Absorbency rating: Super

Review: This YA book by Juno Dawson centres around a spoiled London girl, Fliss and her grandmother, Margot and it is so bloody addictive! When Fliss and her mum move to the country to live with Margot, Fliss accidentally stubbles her grandma’s diary from WWII. The novel jumps between the present and Margot’s diary entries seamlessly, telling the stories of two teenage girls growing up almost 80 years apart. Margot becomes obsessed with the diary and reads it from cover to cover, which is pretty much what we did too. But when Fliss finishes, there are a whole load of questions about her family and her past that Fliss wants answered.

It’s a brilliant book about a complicated family that will have you wishing that your granny had secret diary of her own.


“I plonk myself in the Land Rover. Margot climbs into the driver’s seat and puts the key in the ignition. She pauses. 

‘Regular way home,’ she asks, ‘or shall we go on an adventure?’

‘An adventure?’

‘Let’s turn left and see where we end up.’ She turns to me and gives me an uncharacteristic wink. 

Uncharacteristic it may be, but I like it. I have to smile. I can’t help it. Although I”m aching for bed, I say ‘Adventure it is.’ “

Margot & Me, Juno Dawson, £5.99

Author Alwyn Hamilton came in to the betty bedroom to talk to us about her first novel, Rebel of the Sands. We talk about her main character, Amani, and how a 16-year-old sharp shooter becomes a rebel and survives in a dessert with no one but herself and a strange boy for company.

The sequel, Traitor to the Throne, is about to come out, so this is a great way to catch up on the first book before reading the new one.

We catch up with Jennifer Niven, author of the bestselling All The Bright Places and Holding Up The Universe, to talk about the YA community, the pressure teenage girls face, and the advice she’d give her 13-year-old self.

The Leaving is the creepy page-turner your rainy weekend has been waiting for…

Genre: Thriller

Absorbency Rating: Super Plus

“No, I mean, how do you form and maintain your identity if you have no memories?”

“You have the whole rest of your life ahead of you to make memories.”

“But how do I know how to be?”

“How does anybody? Most people only come into adulthood with a handful of vivid memories of their childhood anyway. There’s a forgetting curve that has been researched and documented. The longer you live, the less you remember. Don’t overvalue what you’ve lost.”

Warning: do not start this book when you’re busy or you’ve only got a few minutes between classes. This is a book that needs an entire day carved out for it – for because once you start, you won’t want to do anything else. It’s a story about six five-year-olds who were taken one day after school. Eleven years later, five of them return with no idea where they’ve been or what happened to Max, the sixth child who went missing. Curl up and dive in… but maybe keep the lights on.

The Leaving by Tara Altebrando, £7.99, Amazon