The Grand Genius Summer of Henry Hoobler is the story of Henry’s summer holiday at the beach with his family when he is 8 years old. Henry begins the holiday with much trepidation. He had received a new bike for Christmas without training wheels and is nervous about riding it. He is also worried about bugs, spiders, snakes, stingers, blue-ringed octopi and sharks. Through the story we see Henry facing his fears and overcoming his worries. He also makes a new friend, Cassie, who encourages him to be brave.

Henry’s family comprises his Mum, Dad, older brother, Patch and younger sister, Lulu. Two other families are also holidaying with them, the Barone’s and the Carson’s. So as well as the usual sibling rivalry, there’s the added dynamics of interacting with the other families. There’s a lot of fun activities that the different family members engage in and mostly the families get on well together.

Overall, Lisa Shanahan has written a positive story of an enjoyable summer holiday where children and adults have fun together, learn new skills and develop their relationships with each other. Specifically, we see Henry grow in maturity and confidence.

A well-written and entertaining read.

More reviews of this book can be found on Goodreads.


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