Anything Boys Can Do Girls Can Do Better!
Xavier Academy is having a computer coding competition with a huge cash prize! Sixth grader Sophie Washington and her friend Chloe can't wait to enter with their other classmates, Nathan and Toby. The only problem is that the boys don't think the girls are smart enough for their team and have already asked two other kids to work with them. Determined to beat the boys, Sophie and Chloe join forces with classmates Mariama, Valentina, and "brainiac," Rani Patel, to form their own all-girl team called "Code One." Computer coding isn't easy, and the young ladies get more than they bargain for when hilarious mishaps stand in their way. It's girls versus boys in the computer coding competition as Sophie and her friends work day and night to prove that anything boys can do girls can do better!
(ARC received from Reedsy Discovery in exchange for an honest review)
This is the first Sophie Washington story that I've read; I didn't even realise it was part of a series until I started to read! That didn't hinder my enjoyment at all though. If you haven't read any of the other books, don't worry about it, Tonya Duncan Ellis does a great job of setting the scene.
Sophie Washington is an excellent lead character for a series full of diverse and well drawn characters. She knows her own mind, isn't perfect and as a character is realistic for the age group. Her friends are an interesting group that it's fun to spend time with, they're a mix of characters but it makes sense that their friends, rather than seeming like stock characters as some stories do.
My only criticism of this book is about the dialogue. It's the part that is probably the hardest to write in a Middle-Grade book, and sometimes that showed. Some of the dialogue does read like an adult trying to imagine how children that age sound and it doesn't quite work. It can be a little clunky. Don't be put off by this common problem though, it didn't get in the way of my overall enjoyment!
The plot is well-suited to the length of the book, and the characters. The idea of a Coding Competition made it exciting, and the girls vs. boys angle is always a good one! There's more to their conflict than that though, it's well thought out and works well.
Whether you've read all of the Sophie Washington books so far, or you're considering starting with Code One, give this a try, and you won't regret it!