Breaking News is the first book in KENSY AND MAX series written by the Australian author, Jacqueline Harvey, and illustrated by J. Yi.
Kensy and Max Grey are 11 years old twins who have been travelling all their life, always moving to a different place after a few months. They are taken to London by their manny only to find that their parents are missing and that they are in quite a pickle. Their life will never be the same again. As they go on a quest to find their parents there are so many things that don’t add up: their school friends, the people on their street, the coded and encrypted messages they keep finding, their continuously buzzing watches, and they feel like there are secrets all around them.
When Kensy and Max are nearly kidnapped, they know that things are going to get stranger. When Kensy sees what she thinks is one of the bizarre grandmas doing flips, splits, handstands and cartwheels one night, then a robbery a few days later, she knows something isn’t quite right. As things become stranger and stranger, they start to find more and more bizarre newspaper clippings and messages, and they think that there is a chance for their parents to be alive!
Kensy is very competitive, really good at science and knows her way around any machine, while Max is very perceptive, and has an amazing photographic memory. The twins pair these skills with Kensy’s ability to pick locks and Max’s ability to crack codes in order to get out of trouble and find their way to the other side of this mystery.
Will Kensy and Max uncover the truth about their parents and what all this madness is about? You’ll have to read the book in order to find out!
I can tell you I loved reading the adventures of the two new characters, Kensy and Max. The great thing is that they are siblings and we get to see some of the issues they need to learn to work through: sometimes they fight, get upset with each other, but they also take care of each other, they help each other and put their heads together to solve the mystery of their missing parents.
I found the first book of this new series a bit more intense and exciting then Jacqueline’s previous two series. But there is one constant: the characters are very resourceful, determined and willing to go to great lengths to do the right thing and accomplish their goal. Also, Jacqueline’s writing is captivating and witty, drawing you in the new adventure we all embarked on when Kensy and Max were introduced to the world.
KENSY AND MAX series is geared to slightly older kids as well, but my younger brother has been waiting for me to finish reading it so he could sneak away with it, too. I think it will be a great success with both boys and girls across middle and upper primary school years.
Penguin Books Australia also put together a fun video trailer for this exciting spy story: