Sarah’s Mini Reviews – World Book Day Books

Good morning! Monday tends to be Middle Grade day here on SWB but there’s a bit of a mix here today. I’m reviewing five of the short stories some wonderful authors created for World Book Day earlier this year. These were all available for just £1 or could be exchanged for the book token that was given out in schools here in the UK. I bought The Case of the Drowned Pearl and Split as I needed two books under 100 pages for a Magical Readathon prompt, but I figured that wouldn’t be a long enough post so I went and downloaded another three to my kindle. There are quite a few other options but these were the ones with kindle versions available!

The Case Of The Drowned Pearl

Robin Stevens

So I know that the Murder Most Unladylike series by Robin Stevens is a pretty popular series and so what about to say is going to fall firmly into unpopular opinion territory but I just wasn’t a fan… Up until now I’ve never actually gotten around to reading any of the series although the first book has been sitting on my shelves for a while but in all honesty after reading this short story I’m not sure I’m actually going to pick it up. Now to be honest and fair I do have to say it’s nothing to do with the writing itself. The mystery element was enjoyable enough and I do quite like Robin’s writing style so it’s certainly not a case of the book being so terribly written I couldn’t bear to pick up another. I just didn’t like the central characters And I know among some of my blogging friends that’s gonna be pretty controversial opinion but I have to be honest they just irritated me and I can’t really see myself sticking it out through nine full length books…

Buy it from – Amazon UK // Amazon US // Waterstones

Connect with Robin – Website // Twitter // Instagram


Muhammad Khan

There was a lot of talk about Muhammad Khan when I Am Thunder was first released back in 2018. I heard nothing but positive things about it but never got as far buying it. Split is only a short story, less than 100 pages but I was amazed at how invested I was in the characters by the time I reached the end. I just really empathised with the central character from the beginning and I was so mad on her behalf! I thought it was really well written, that the issues were dealt with sensitively, but felt very genuine. As someone who grew up in a different culture I thought it gave me a really interesting insight into a different part of society. I’ll definitely be picking up I Am Thunder after reading this.

Buy it from – Amazon UK // Amazon US // Waterstones // Book Depository

Connect with Muhammad – Twitter

Amelia Fang and the Bookworm Gang

Laura Ellen Anderson

I have a real soft spot for the Amelia Fang series. One of the early books in the series was my Goddaughter Hannah’s class reads and she immediately became absolutely obsessed with them. It’s become our thing that I buy her the new one whenever it’s released, after buying the third or fourth book I decided I may as well give one a read to see what it was she loves so much about them and I absolutely fell in love with them. I think I’ve shared reviews of the first two books in the series here on SWB previously. This is a really short book that Laura Ellen Anderson has written especially for World Book Day it’s only about 60 pages so a super quick read but just absolutely delightful from beginning to end. We got a little bit of Amelia and her family, and all her friends that you’ll be familiar with if you’ve already read some of the series, but they’re briefly introduced for new readers as well. We also get some wonderful new characters in The Bookworms, I thought they were adorable! The message they gave about being brave and not being afraid to ask for help is really important and it was just a really lovely story.

I also just have to give a mention to the fact that Laura illustrates these books as well and as ever they are absolutely gorgeous illustrations whether it’s little squashy the pumpkin or the new bookworm family they were just beautiful. I loved that the bookworm family just all clearly had such strong individual personalities and I adored how Laura drew them

Buy it from – Amazon UK // Amazon US // Waterstones

Connect with Laura – Website // Twitter // Instagram // Facebook

The Kissing Booth: Road Trip!

Beth Reekles

Onto the second of the books aimed at an older audience. I don’t know an awful lot about the books this is based on. I think there are two full length novels currently, one recent release and one a little older but I’ve not read either of them so I’m not really sure where this short story fits in the timeline. I feel like I got enough information in this story to understand the characters and the general relationships between people I still felt like there was a lot of back story I was missing. So I’m assuming this is set after the first book but I’m not sure where the second fits in. That said I think it was well written, I’d quite like to know more about Noah and I think overall I did like Elle. She has some insecurities which I completely understand, in this story it worked but if the same pattern was repeated in a longer novel I think it could become a little off putting. Overall I think the short has done enough convince me to get hold of The Kissing Booth at some point perhaps when I don’t have 200 and something other books still waiting to be read which probably means never, maybe, sometime…

Buy it from – Amazon UK // Amazon US // Waterstones

Connect with Beth – Website // Twitter // Instagram // Facebook

Evie in the Jungle

Matt Haig

Matt Haig is one of those authors that I see all the time. Whenever I walk into a Waterstones and am browsing in the children’s section I see a Matt Haig book but I’ve never actually read any of them until picking up this. I have to say if this is what all his writing is like I will be going and reading all of the books! I found Evie to just be a completely wonderful character. I know that having the ability to speak to animals is not necessarily a unique idea, Dr Dolittle is about 100 years old after all! I loved the way it was used in this story though, all the different animals Evie was talking to had such strong personalities that came across in their conversations, whether it was a really proud Jaguar or the way the really sleepy sloth spoke it was just a really delightful book to read. There was also an underlying message about the importance of conservation as well. Another mention to illustrations in one of these short stories, Emily Gravett is responsible for these and I loved the style of them. Having had a quick look through Matt’s Goodreads page it looks like this is a short spin off based on Evie and the Animals so I’ll definitely be picking that one up shortly and then at some point moving on to some of the others I think he’s got a lot of christmassy sounding books an so maybe they’ll feature in Blogmas which probably isn’t as far away as it sounds considering nearly at the end of July already

Buy it from – Amazon UK // Amazon US // Waterstones

Connect with Matt – Website // Twitter // Instagram // Facebook

There we have it, five very brief reviews of some of the World Book Day 2020 releases. Have you read any of them? Would you recommend any other books by these authors? Let me know in the comments!

2 thoughts on “Sarah’s Mini Reviews – World Book Day Books

  1. Pingback: SWB’s July In Books – Sarah Withers Blogs

  2. Pingback: Sarah Reviews… Evie and the Animals by Matt Haig – Sarah Withers Blogs

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