I’ve long been a fan of Christopher Edge: he has a real knack for making complex scientific concepts interesting and accessible to a younger audience, weaving them into fascinating middle-grade storylines. In the past, asking which one of his previous 3 books I loved the most was like asking me to choose my favourite child. However, his latest book is so good that it goes straight in at No 1 without any question…

The song of time lives inside your mind…

Charlie, Dizzy and Johnny visit the local wood after school: Charlie and Dizzy are there to look at some intriguing signs discovered earlier by Dizzy, whereas Johnny is there to make mischief. However, as darkness suddenly descends, all 3 rapidly become lost and start to experience some very strange goings-on. Will the night finally end so that they can find their way home? Only time will tell…

You build the future with every action you take, no matter how small.

In some respects, this is a difficult book to review as I don’t want to reveal any spoilers. For me, the story was a truly immersive, ‘one-sitting-read’ experience and learning more about the content and storyline in advance would have ruined it somewhat, so I’m determined not to give any aspect of the game away. In a similar vein to Christopher’s last book, The Infinite Lives of Maisy Day, the atmospherics kick in right from page one, with tension building constantly as the story unfolds. You never know what’s coming next and your assumptions are challenged continuously in many different ways (I so wish I could give you some examples of the very clever ways in which Christopher does this!). I had no idea in which direction the story was going until – boom – the pieces fell directly into place and I realised that actually there were clues laid out all the way along, if only I’d been clever enough to stitch them together correctly. I loved the inclusion of traditional communication methods and the links between science and history, and by the time I got to the end, I felt a bond with the characters as though we had experienced the journey together.

This is definitely one of the most impactful books I’ve read this year. I’m now 2 days on from closing the cover, yet the story is still with me: indeed, I’ve spent a fair amount of time thinking about the importance of time, life and making a difference. Talking of time, I feel as though I waited an age for this book to come out, and now I’m in the same position again waiting for the next one, which is surely the sign of a great writer – always leaving readers wanting more. I truly hope that book number 5 is in the pipeline…

The Longest Night of Charlie Noon:

Author: Christopher Edge
Cover Art: Matt Saunders
Publisher: Nosy Crow
ISBN: 9781788004947
Paperback: 192 pages

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