I am so thrilled to be hosting Ewa on my blog today! Below she shares some top mystery reads for children- how many have you read?
THE COOKING CLUB DETECTIVES is the new middle grade mystery from Waterstones-shortlisted author Ewa Jozefkowicz. A beautifully observed story about the power of food and the importance of community.
Meet Erin, her puppy Sausage and friends as they swap recipes and pots for clues and culprits and try to solve the mystery of why their cookery club is closing.
Erin loves her mum, Lara. For as long as she can remember it’s just been the two of them. Moving to a new school, Erin meets Tanya, who has a housekeeper and a wealthy dad. Their families seem so different but soon the girls become best friends along with Sam and Frixos at their after-school cookery club.
One day the community centre, and their club, is under threat of closure. Who could be plotting against them and why? Erin, Sausage and their new friends form the Cooking Club Detectives and set out to solve the mystery in this beautifully observed story about the power of food and friendship complete with easy, tasty recipes throughout.
Ewa and her publisher Zephyr are supporting UK charity Magic Breakfast who work in schools to combat hunger as a barrier to a learning. Ewa saw first-hand the huge benefits of the charity when she was a governor at a London primary school. It is the work of Magic Breakfast that inspired The Cooking Club Detectives. https://www.magicbreakfast.com/
Top mystery reads from Ewa Jozefkowicz
I love mystery stories. Here are some fantastic mysteries which I would recommend.
Skellig by David Almond
Skellig by David Almond is one of my favourite stories. I still remember the day my dad brought it home from his bookshop and told eleven-year-old me that it was the best thing he’d read in years. He was right – it’s a beautiful story of hope in unlikely places and a magical old man. At its heart lies the mystery of who Skellig really is, and what role he has to play on earth.
The Valley of Lost Secrets by Lesley Parr
This reads like a wartime classic, and it reminded me of Michelle Magorian’s Goodnight Mr. Tom and Robert Westall’s The Machine Gunners. Jimmy and Ronnie are evacuated from Islington to the Welsh village of Llanbryn, which couldn’t be more different to their home. Six-year-old Ronnie loves the Thomases who have taken them in, while his older brother struggles to adjust to his new reality. But something happens which changes Jimmy’s entire perception of Llanbryn – he discovers a skull hidden inside the trunk of a hollow tree and makes it his mission to find out who it belongs to. It’s a breathtaking story which I completed reading in one day!
Wildspark by Vashti Hardy
This one is unlike any book I’ve read over the past couple of years. It’s futuristic and historical, at the same time. It’s a tale of sibling love and a magical mystery. Prue, an expert mechanic, lives on a farm with her parents and desperately misses her brother Francis, who died the previous year. When Craftsman Primrose comes to the farm, seeking to take her brother on as an apprentice (and unaware of his death), she chases after him and enrolls in his place. She travels to the wondrous city of Medlock where magic and mystery go hand in hand.
Ostrich Boys by Keith Gray
This is such a unique and devastating story, that I remember first shutting the book halfway through and not being sure if I was ready to read the rest. But I’m glad I did. Blake, Kenny, Sim and Ross are best mates. But one day, Ross is killed in a car accident and his friends are in pieces. What follows is a mystery which slowly unravels, in which the boys find out what really happened to Ross and learn a lot about themselves in the process.
Rooftoppers by Katherine Rundell
I’m a huge fan of Katherine Rundell. There’s such a vivid quality to her writing which makes me feel invested in the story from the very opening pages. Rooftoppers is the story of Sophie, who is told that she’s an orphan, found floating in a cello case – the only survivor of a shipwreck. But Sophie remembers her mum, and is determined to find her. Can she solve the mystery of who and where her mother is?
LOVE this post I’ve read them all except The Ostrich Boys!! I’ve even taught Skellig in my past life!! It certainly has power, it hooked in all the ‘naughty’ boys and struggling but not quite SEN group (aka functioning illiterate) class that I had been given (to make the ‘proper’ English teachers across the campus have ‘nice’ classes) but that class we made magic in those readings and lessons & they eventually soared as students too becoming one of my favourite ever classes to this day- just shows the power of a book and trusting beyond first impressions.