Reader Reviewed Pick Your Poison by Lauren Child

Pick Your Poison

Written by Lauren Child
Part of the Ruby Redfort Series

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The Lovereading4Kids comment

May 2016 Book of the Month You’ve got to be really smart to keep up with 13 year old secret agent Ruby Redfort, as her enemies know to their cost. There are multiple strands to her new adventure, which involves some deliciously clever dead-letter drops, double-crossings galore and a series of Snow White-inspired poisonings. Ruby of course takes it all in her stride, though she does have to brush up her Kung-Fu! Ruby is far and away the coolest, sassiest sleuth around and her deadpan dialogue gives the books a very distinct and satisfying flavour. Extra treats for her devotees in this volume include four-dimensional codes set by Marcus du Sautoy no less. Yep, Ruby is in a class of her own. ~ Andrea Reece

For those looking for more mysteries to solve, Robin Stevens’s Murder Most Unladylike series should fit the bill, while Lemony Snicket’s All the Wrong Questions series matches the books for cleverness and humour.

Reader Reviews

Kids love to read and so in addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Lovereading4kids Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review the first title in the series, Look Into My Eyes. You can read their full reviews here.

  • Cara, age 9 - 'Ruby Redfort is very Adventurous, and I think it's cool with all the codes that Clancy and Ruby made up.'
  • Katherine Sheldon, age 12 - 'All in all an amazing book which kept me turning the pages until a fantastic ending, can't wait to read the next one!!'
  • Lucy Evans, age 8 - 'My mum got so annoyed when I was reading it, because I never wanted to put it down, not even to go to bed!'
  • Natalie Hunter, age 12 - 'I really love Ruby Redfort and enjoy the mystery. I think the characters individual personalities are brilliant. I also like how the main character though super smart, acts like your average 13yr old.' 
  • Rose Heathcote, age 15 - 'This is a cleverly written mystery book, the casual remarks made throughout are important in solving the mysteries, this is what really draws you in and keeps you engaged all the way through.'
  • Year 6, Freegrounds Junior School - 'We read this book as a class and loved it - we almost couldn't put it down...Loved the book, great main character and fast plot.'
  • Jessamyn Doore, age 16 - 'Saw this and was reminded of my Clarice Bean reading days.  Just had to give it a go and was so glad I did.  Ruby Redford is great!'
  • Hannah Pendel, age 10 - 'Hold onto your hats, Ruby has been recruited for spectrum. A secret spy agency hidden from the world. Is she really capable of saving gold - but is it the gold that needs saving?'
  • Lily Boniface, age 15 - 'This is the best adventure book I have read in a long time. It had just the right amount of ‘on the edge of my seat’ suspence and mystery to keep you guessing.'
  • Isabel Kardos-Stowe, age 10 - 'This is a great book that really draws you in. You just have to turn over every page...I won't tell you much about the book but you HAVE to read it.'
  • Daisy Theobald, age 11 - 'I really enjoyed this book because I love mystery. As soon as I read the first page I was gripped.'


Pick Your Poison by Lauren Child

Ruby Redfort: undercover agent, code-cracker and thirteen-year-old genius - you can count on her when you're between a rock and a hard place. There's a lot to lose sleep over in Twinford: there's the snakes and the bivalves, but they aren't half as poisonous as the rumours. With so many twists and turns it's hard to know who to trust, particularly when no one trusts you. Will Ruby make it out in one piece? Well, happy endings are for fairy tales, bozo.

Find out all the confidential information about Ruby Redfort at her own website

or her facebook page


Praise for Ruby Redfort

'This is a marvellous romp of a book, packed with action, villains, eccentric and embarrassing parents, superb gadgets and some perplexing codes.. Child excels at creating rounded central characters full of spiky defiance, wild imagination and touching loyalty to friends, and supports them with a thrilling cast of adversaries.' Daily Mail

'The new Ruby Redfort book is utterly exceptionordinarily brilliant' - Clarice Bean

'Lauren Child has put imagination and fun back into the real worlds of childhood.' - Julia Eccleshare, The Guardian

'Lauren Child is so good it's exhilarating' - The Independent

'Lauren Child is a publishing phenomenon' - Observer Magazine

Praise for Clarice Bean, Don't Look Now:

'Both hilarious and moving - this is going to be a huge hit.' - Guardian Books Supplement

'combines Lauren Child's inimitable style and wit' - Sunday Post

About the Author

Lauren Child

Lauren Child burst on to the children’s books scene in 1999 and has since
published many bestselling and awardwinning books, including those featuring
the hugely popular Charlie and Lola, and the Clarice Bean series. She has won
numerous awards including the prestigious Kate Greenaway Medal and
the Smarties Gold Award. Her books have been made into an award-winning
TV series and have sold in many languages with runaway success. In December 2008 she was named as a UNESCO Artist for Peace, and was awarded an MBE in 2009.

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Book Info


528 pages
Interest Age: From 9


Lauren Child
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HarperCollins Children's Books an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers

Publication date

5th May 2016




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