ARC Review: THE INCREDIBLE RECORD SMASHERS by Jenny Pearson (Middle Grade Monday)

I received an ARC from a publicist in exchange for an honest review. It has not affected my opinions.

Title in white on confetti red next to two kids trying to break a record
Genre: Contemporary/Humour
Age Range: MG
Star Rating: 4 stars
Series: standalone


Book cover for THE INCREDIBLE RECORD SMASHERS: title in bold white on red above two kids trying to break a record

Lucy is a fixer of broken things. But there’s one things she can’t fix and that’s her unhappy mum. Until she comes up with an INCREDIBLE plan. Along with her best friend, Sansesh, Lucy is going to SMASH a world record.

Because she’s convinced that starry Paul Castellini – Record Smashers TV host and all-time crooner – is the answer to her mum’s problems. But breaking a world RECORD when watermelons, kumquats, two baddies, and a 30cm shatter-resistant school ruler are involved isn’t quite as easy as Lucy thought. Can she learnt that sometimes happiness doesn’t come with a plan?

Synopsis taken from copy. Add to your Goodreads shelves here.


THE INCREDIBLE RECORD SMASHERS is an absolute giggle-fest of a book about the bizarre situations Lucy and her friend Sandesh get into in their attempts to break world records.

The comedy in this book comes from the frankly impossible situations Lucy finds herself in (and the abortive attempts to set a new record). It’s just so bonkers, and yet she and Sandesh take everything in their stride, as it’s completely normal to be running around with a water melon that’s starting to go mouldy, or get tangled up with art thieves.

Under all the giggles, the book has an emotional core that’s just as important, tackling the topic of depression in parents and the desperate desire for the child to help. The bond between Lucy and her mum is the real heart of the book, and the variety of people that can make up a family.

The chapters all begin with records from around the world, some of which have Lucy’s comments on them. It was a really fun way to hint at the upcoming chapter (why is the mentioned record for this chapter about cacti?) while keeping with the book’s theme. Plus there are a few disclaimers (the DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME variety that probably had to be included for legal reasons) but were done in Lucy’s voice such that they didn’t interrupt the flow.

There will be illustrations in the final copy (though there were none in the ARC, which often happens, as ARCs are printed sometimes as much as 6 months or more before publication). I can only imagine how funny it will be to see the story brought to life, with all the hijinks drawn.


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