Juno Jones, Rival Reader # 4

Series: Juno Jones
Publication Date: 8 Oct. 2021
Format: Paperback / softback

ISBN 9780648492580

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    Not Muttonbird Bay Primary, of course, but their neighbour Pademelon Point. When five new kids join Juno Jones' class, Juno must do whatever she can to keep her title as the school's "Super Reader.'

    Her greatest rival--Tess Golightly--a warrior maiden and ace reader with a pet Gryphon.

    Everyone wants to be friends with Tess, but Juno thinks nobody can be that awesome unless they have something to hide"¦


    Book Type: Junior Chapter
    Age Group: 7 to 12 years
    Traffic Lights: Green
    Class Novel: No
    Good Reads Rating: 4.5/5
    Literary Rating: 4.5/5


    This fourth instalment to the Juno Jones series sees the school inspectors follow through on the threat set up in the first book--they have closed one of the schools in the area.

    Thankfully it's not Juno's beloved Muttonbird Bay Primary, but the school at Pademelon Point--a.k.a the Poo School (a name, hence after, banned by Miss Tippett)so-nicknamed as it is next to a sewerage plant. An influx of five new students causes strife for Juno, who is worried that the new kids will be "more awesome' than her. Twins Jake and Blake, hip-hop lover Aarya, and sporty Meg turn out to be all right. But then there's Tess Golightly.

    Tess is a highly skilled reader who claims to be a warrior maiden, ninja-in-training, with a pet Gryphon. Juno takes an instant dislike to Tess, because she believes her friends, Bluey and Vi, will think Tess is cooler than Juno herself is. Juno tries to win over the class by hosting an epic birthday party, but Tess has already invited everyone to a "reading party' at her house.

    Juno hatches a plan to "destroy' Tess Golightly by one-upping her at every opportunity. For example, when Tess prepares a song about A Series of Unfortunate Events, Juno performs an entire operetta about the series. And when Tess brings the class a collection of baked goods, Juno brings in a chocolate-making machine (created by Genius George) where her classmates can design their own personalised confectionary creations. Tess concedes defeat and reveals she was nervous about moving schools. Juno feels guilty about creating the rivalry with Tess and accepts the invitation to attend her party.

    Juno's birthday arrives, and she, Bluey, Vi and George dress up as the Pevensie siblings for Tess's reading party. When they arrive, the entire class is there. It's revealed that the reading party was a cover for a surprise ninja themed birthday party for Juno, which Tess planned for her, as she really wants to become friends with Juno. The epilogue promises the return of the Alien Lizard Men, who are absent from their usual antagonistic role in this book.

    Another delightful entry in the Juno Jones series, offering some fun new characters to explore. Gordon adds fantastic representation to the already diverse cast of characters with Aarya, a refugee from Sudan, and Tess, who wears hearing aids. In this book we see more vulnerability in Juno. Although there is still plenty of wit, humour and, of course, Juno's incredible imagination, this is a more grounded story about insecurity and coping with change.


    coping with change, school, competitiveness, rivals, new friendships, insecurity

    Content Notes

    Not applicable.

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