Andrea Reece - Editorial Expert

About Andrea Reece

Andrea Reece has spent all her working life in children’s books. Her first job was at Transworld Publishers back in the 1980s where, amongst other things, she ran the fan club for readers of the smash hit teen series Sweet Dreams.

She went on to work for other children’s publishers, large and small, and with authors including David Almond, Nick Butterworth, Mick Inkpen and Michael Morpurgo. In 2005 she set up children’s independent Catnip Publishing Ltd., publishing Richard and Judy favourite Scaredy Squirrel in the process, and went on to run Books for Keeps, the children’s books journal.

She is very used to odd looks from people on trains and buses who see her reading children’s books, and is still as excited as ever to discover a new children’s author. Apart from being one of the Lovereading4kids editorial experts alongside Julia Eccleshare she is also director of the children’s and young people’s programme of the FT Weekend Oxford Literary Festival.

Latest Reviews By Andrea Reece

The Boy, The Mole, The Fox and The Horse
Four very different characters take centre stage in this unusual and beautiful tale. There’s a horse, wise and reliable; a boy, Christopher Robin-like in his curiosity and kindness; a mole, driven by an optimism, and love of cake; and a fox, vulnerable and in need of love and understanding. Full of tenderness and compassion, with much to make readers smile and more yet to prompt a sense of forgiveness, even of ourselves. Though simple enough for the youngest children, the words will resonate just as much with adult readers. A very special book. View Full Review
The Super-Miraculous Journey of Freddie Yates
There aren’t many books that can have you laughing out loud one minute, and tearing up the next, but The Super Miraculous Journey of Freddie Yates is one.  When Freddie sets off on a secret journey that will take him half-way across the country, his two best friends come too; they have their own reasons for wanting to escape home for a bit.  Together the three get into and out of some extraordinary scrapes, inadvertently becoming heroes in the process, and Freddie experiences an actual miracle.  Freddie, Ben and Charlie are great characters and their ... View Full Review
Be More Vegan
Full of information and sensible advice, this is an excellent guidebook for any young person who is considering turning vegan, or who just wants to cut back on meat and dairy. For one thing, it is packed with delicious and faff-free vegan recipes, easy to follow, easy to make and certain to be a hit with everyone in the family, even dyed-in-the-wool carnivores; but it’s also full of equally useful and appealing information on the whys of being vegan. Niki Webster explains it all in a way that feels friendly and do-able, making sure to answer FAQs on ... View Full Review
Everything Sad Is Untrue
For ages 9 to 90 ‘Every story is the sound of  a storyteller begging to stay alive’, says Khosrou – or Daniel as he’s known to his new classmates in Oklahoma - the narrator of the many wonderful stories that make up this book. Central of course is his own story, how with his mother and sister he had to flee his home in Iran, leaving his father behind, but there are also the stories of his grandparents and great-grandparents, plus the myths that he’s grown up with.  Horribly picked on at school ... View Full Review
The Boy, The Mole, The Fox and The Horse
Four very different characters take centre stage in this unusual and beautifully illustrated book. There’s a horse, wise and reliable; a boy, Christopher Robin-like in his curiosity and kindness; a mole, driven by an optimism, and love of cake; and a fox, vulnerable and in need of love and understanding. The story of their friendship is told through Charlie Mackesy’s evocative pen and ink sketches. Most but not all are accompanied by three or four lines of text, not so much a narrative but rather meditations, little flashes of insight into the human condition: “We ... View Full Review
All About Mia
In Mia Campbell-Richardson, Lisa Williamson has created one of the stroppiest, most self-absorbed heroines ever to grace the pages of a novel. The middle of three daughters, Mia has convinced herself that she is unloved and overlooked by her parents in favour of her awe-inspiringly successful sisters. Indeed, when Grace, Cambridge-bound big sister returns home from her gap year pregnant – to the shock of all – Mia responds by laughing; it’s hardly surprising the atmosphere at home is tense. No matter how badly she behaves however, readers will remain on Mia’s side, such is the ... View Full Review
The Art of Being Normal
This is a sensitive, often funny and thoroughly engaging story of teenagers coming to terms with who they are. It’s easy to think in these liberal times that anything goes, but teens will be quick to point out that growing up is as difficult as it’s ever been. It’s particularly hard for David, one of the two central characters in this assured debut. David has known since the age of eight that he wants to be a girl. Teased as a freak at school, he feels he can’t even tell his family. ... View Full Review
Hey Sherlock!
This is the third in Simon Mason’s award-winning Garvie Smith crime series and you won’t find a better, more entertaining or more stylishly written whodunnit. His hero Garvie Smith is very smart – indeed, he’s a virtual maths genius – but very lazy, whether it comes to housework, schoolwork or his new job as a fencer (delivered courtesy of his friend Smudge). The disappearance of the teenage daughter of the house behind the fences they are fixing is something that exercises Garvie and he’s much better placed to solve the mystery than ... View Full Review
The Brink of Darkness
In a nutshell: passionate love story continues – in hell  |    Zoe and X are soulmates, even though she’s a 21st century teenager and he’s a bounty hunter from the Lowlands, ie Hell.  They were brought together in The Edge of Everything, but separated at the end when he sacrificed himself for her and returned to the Lowlands.  But never say forever – in this equally torrid and thrilling episode the two are reunited, Zoe recklessly plunging into the underworld to find X, now involved in a search for his missing ... View Full Review
Little Liar
In a nutshell: YA psychological thriller, as twisty as they come |    This story begins in a spiritual retreat. 17 year old Nora is there to recover from an accident and promises readers she will describe the chain of events that brought her there. It will, she says, be a true story, before immediately admitting that she hasn’t always told the truth. This is putting it mildly: Nora’s whole life is a series of lies and deceptions. She has a library of stories to explain her father’s death for example, and in an ... View Full Review
The Edge of Everything
In a nutshell: girl loves boy/supernatural bounty hunter  |   When star-crossed lovers Zoe and the boy she nicknames X meet the circumstances are hardly promising: stranded in a blizzard Zoe has fallen into the hands of a psychotic murderer and X, there in his capacity as supernatural bounty hunter responsible for dragging wicked souls to Hell, saves her. When Zoe persuades him to let the man go, her fate and X’s intertwine but as the plot unfolds, we begin to realise that maybe they were part of a bigger story all along. Sassy, fast-talking Zoe ... View Full Review
More Than We Can Tell
March 2018 Book of the Month | In a nutshell: gripping YA thriller  |  Two damaged young people are the central characters in this gripping novel.  Rev, who lives with his adopted parents, still bears the scars inflicted by his abusive father, and fears that he may one day meet the man again or, even worse, turn into him.  Em’s homelife is toxic, her parents argue all the time and her mother often attacks Em too. She takes refuge online, but that space stops feeling safe when one of the vile trolls who target her (mostly for ... View Full Review