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The Middler

Kirsty Applebaum


  • Action Adventures - chills, thrills and plenty of spills
  • Friends & Family - tears and laughter, and happy ever after

Average rating

4 out 5

The Middler is a gripping story of forbidden friendship, loyalty and betrayal set in a near-future world.


I loved reading this book. It stayed with me for a long time after reading and there were lots of phrases and sentences that I just wanted to linger on and think about. I’ve recommended it to a few children in my class and it’s been great seeing them enjoy it just as much and discussing it with them afterwards.

Miss Charles 16.11.2020

This is a dystopian adventure set in a Fennis Wick, a place where the eldest children are held in some reverence. Maggie (a middler) feels invisible and purposeless, especially when her brother leaves to fight the Quiet War against the dangerous wanderers. Maggie embarks on a forbidden friendship with Una - a wanderer which has surprising and sometimes dangerous consequences and results in some long held secrets being uncovered.

trish37 10.09.2020

I enjoyed this book for the thinking that it made me do! There are lots of questions the reader has without answers and I enjoyed this. I am a middle child too and could relate to some of the things that Maggie felt about being a middle child! I also found it a bit upsetting especially when all the first born children go away. When Maggie realises that she won't see Jed again, I really felt her sorrow.

torakandrenn 31.08.2020

This book is unlike anything that I have read before and has a superb plot. Set in a dystopian, not so distant future, where the lives of all are impacted by the Quiet War. The eldest child of each family is taken to camp and will fight bravely in the Quiet War. Never to return to their families. Our lead character is not an eldest, she isn't even a youngest - she is a middler. Destined to be a nobody, destined to work in the fields. Maggie doesn't want to be a nobody and when she meets a young Wanderer, she devices a plan to catch her and become a hero - A Wanderer Catcher. Maggie befriends the wanderer and they become close, but Maggie still wants to be someone. It is only when she reveals the wanderers location that she starts to question if she is on the right side, and is there something sinister happening in their peaceful town? Maggie embarks on a one woman mission to get to the bottom of it and it is an unbelievable thrill ride! Kirsty Applebaum has an incredible ability to let the reader inside the decision making process of her characters and we see the conflict within Maggie. It is a stark reminder that we need to be careful, when we are told information and facts and to always challenge when things are wrong. It is a fascinating book and a must read for UKS2 children. It reminded me of The Road, but I enjoyed this novel much more!

MrMcGrath 15.08.2020

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