9 January 2015

Feel the Fear (Ruby Redfort, #4) by Lauren Child*

First, I must confess, I have not read any of the other Ruby Redfort books. Originally I thought I'd build up to Feel the Fear* - the latest in the Ruby Redfort series, only just published in November 2014 - by getting to really know Ruby through reading the three books before this. Then a better idea struck - what if I saw this book in a store and couldn't get my hands on the others (not uncommon just before Christmas especially) and just went ahead and see how it goes? It is going fantastically, thanks for asking.

Quick Look: Code-cracker, Secret Agents, Mystery, Humorous.

"Ruby Redfort: Undercover agent, code-cracker and thirteen-year-old genius. The fourth book in the scarily awesome Ruby Redfort series, by multi-million-copy bestselling author Lauren Child. This time Ruby must pit her wits against a seemingly invisible foe. How do you set your sights on catching a light-fingered villain if you can’t even see him…?" (Goodreads)

Other Ruby Redfort books:

1. Look Into My Eyes (published 2011)
2. Take Your Last Breath (published 2012)
3. Catch Your Death (published 2013)

Do you need to read the other 3 before? Not necessarily, but if they are just as good as #4 (which presumably they are) then they are worth a read. Lauren Child does lovely recaps of previous books in the introductory chapters: don't know the characters? We get brief introductions again and a sense of their personality. Don't know what's happened before? Again, the reader gets a little nod to the trouble Ruby Redfort got in to previously very early on and you know in short what happened as well as the consequences. Does that spoil it? I suppose it does a little, yes, but we don't just read to see exactly what mission Ruby gets up to, do we? We read to see friendships blossom, for live action and suspense too so I predict that reading these in the wrong order will not lessen the intensity of the story.

When I started reading I was immediately reminded of the banter between Skulduggery Pleasant and his partner Stephanie - however, as Ruby is funny in general I feel there was more dialogue that made me smile and think her funny as opposed to Skulduggery Pleasant where the second book had more serious overtones and not enough Skulduggery. Getting back to Ruby Redfort, the way Lauren Child presents the dialogue and text in general is so wonderful. It's interesting to look at, there is big bold text, pages of actual code, and some dialogue in a play-like format which paces the conversation to real time. We bookworms know reading is fun anyway, but the layout of Feel the Fear brought a whole other level to the word and I can imagine kids will love seeing codes and getting the chance to crack it themselves.


You know, I've been going through a bit of a slump in reading - that is to say most of the books I've picked up lately I've been rating them 3 stars. I know what a 5 star book feels like but unfortunately I keep turning to the 3 stars and below. That being said, I am so surprised at how much I am enjoying this book, yes I am an ancient twenty-two year old reading a book about a thirteen year old but this is such a refreshing read and I can feel at least a 4 star rating at the end, if not more. I haven't finished the book yet but I'm excited by the story - give me time, people, it's 528 pages long! Although the page length shouldn't deter children (my biggest hate is when a child really wants a book and a parent says no because it is too big a book size-wise for them) the language is easy to read and as I mentioned earlier, some of those pages are images and codes - isn't it every 13 year old's dream to be a secret agent? Let them by living it through Ruby Redfort.

Finally, I want to share a little video of author, Lauren Child, on friendship and Ruby Redfort because I think it's wonderful to hear Lauren's words on friendships and loyalty. This is the mind that creates the books that children will read and love, so isn't it fantastic that they will read about how important friendship is:

Don't forget you can like the Facebook page to keep up to date to with the world of Ruby Redfort as well as a website (RubyRedfort.com) with loads of awesome extras and the Codebreaker you'll need for secret messages in the book. Another fun thing to do this weekend: Ruby Redfort's t-shirt competition which closes on the 11th of January (which is why I'm posting my review a little early so you've got a chance to enter). Enter for the chance to win £50 of ASOS vouchers AND have your t-shirt judged by Lauren Child herself!

Feel the Fear (Ruby Redfort, Book 4)Feel the Fear by Lauren Child
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

View all my reviews

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*Amazon Associate link
Collaboration post

Lauren Child is a British Author so I'm counting this read towards my British Books Challenge


  1. Hopping over from the British Books Challenge...

    These look fun! I requested the first one from the library. I got into code-breaking last year in conjunction with my visit to Bletchley Park: Bletchley Park photos

    1. I don't normally go for the mystery / code breakers but this is really fun to read! It's great to actually SEE the evidence and have to figure out keywords and codes too