Marge in Charge Isla Fisher, illustrated by Eglantine Ceulemans

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marge

Allen & Unwin Australia
ISBN 9781848125339

Publisher:Bonnier

Imprint:Piccadilly Books

Pub Date:August 2016

RRP $14.99

Comedian, actress, mother and now author, Isla Fisher takes domestic anarchy to a new level with these stories about a baby sitter who is definitely not average. Jemima and Jake do not want a new babysitter. They especially don’t want one that looks so old, so sensible and so small. But as soon as their parents leave the house and Marge is in charge look out! Things get crossed off Mummy’s list and others are added – and they are definitely not what Jemima and Jake would expect!

As soon as Marge takes off her hat and reveals her long rainbow hair, the children suspect that things might be more fun than they had expected. They certainly are when the kitchen becomes a zone for anything goes, the bathroom is filled with soapy foam, pet snails are allowed to race on the table and Marge uses hair dye as a face mask – and that’s just the beginning. It’s rather like hiring the Cat in the Hat to be a babysitter in fact.

Isla Fisher has been telling her three children bedtime stories all their lives and this was the genesis of Marge in Charge. As one might expect from a household that includes Sacha Baron Cohen the results are hilarious and full of the uproarious unconventionality that children love.

Highly recommended for readers around 8 and up and this would definitely make a fun read aloud – perhaps you could include some discussion about ‘rules’ *wink* !

You Choose… – George Ivanoff

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RRP $14.99

Oh George, why do you do this to me? I continually bomb out – repeatedly. I must be the most hopeless ‘choose-your-own-adventurer’ ever! But they are great fun – and the kids are eating them up. I have a bunch of girls who just love the interactivity of this series – and I know that boys are just as wild for them. Hopefully they’re better survivors than I am!

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You Choose 9: Extreme Machine Challenge

Imprint: Random House Australia Children’s

ISBN: 9780143780199

Published: 27/06/2016

 

Of course if you are attending the Extreme Machine Expo the highlight would be actually getting to drive one for real, rather than just the simulator demos.  After all, it must be safe right? So which should you choose? Motorbikes, helicopters, jets, speedboats – so much variety it’s mindboggling.  You are so excited by all the possibilities you don’t even notice those strange characters at first.  But strange things are afoot and suddenly you are in the race of your life.

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You Choose 10: In the Realm of Dragons

ISBN: 9780143780212

Published: 27/06/2016

Imprint: Random House Australia Children’s

Naturally anyone who has always been obsessed by dragons is going to try and prove a legend about them. When you find out about the rumours of dragons right near your school camp you just have to try and discover the truth. And wow! When you come across two peculiar looking eggs, maybe the legend really is true! But just because you love dragons doesn’t mean they are going to love you right back does it?

(Axel Scheffler’s) Flip Flap Pets – Axel Scheffler

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9780857636805

July 2016

Allen & Unwin

Imprint: Nosy Crow

ISBN 9780857636805

RRP $ 15.99

Flip flap books have always been popular with kids as they make all kinds of crazy combinations.

I knew this one was going to be a sure fire winner at our house for sure because we are the household with the menagerie. I was right! Small went crazy when she saw so many of her own pets included in this fun book including cat, lizard, budgies, goldfish and even stick insects!

We have had loads of fun going back to this again and again and trying out all the different combinations with many giggles (there are 121 possible combos!). Somehow I don’t think this one is going to make it out of the house as my review copies mostly do!

“What do you get if you cross a lizard with a budgerigar? Well, that would a lizerigar!”

Look out for the others in this series: Farm, Safari and Jungle. I guarantee they will entertain for many hours!

 

My Feelings – Sarah Jennings

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feelings

Bloomsbury

August 2016

ISBN: 9781408869048
Imprint: Bloomsbury Activity Books

RRP $12.99

As Small continues with her counsellor and actively begins to articulate her feelings, increasing her emotional awareness (which is very much helping her work through many issues including grief and anxiety), this little book is a very timely review.

Designed for younger children, it could just as easily fit in with any early learning situation or home circumstance. It is a very attractively presented board book with each page ‘tabbed’ by an appropriately expressive face for each feeling.

“When you feel sad…or worried…

Dance.

Have a cake daydream.

Take deep breaths.

Tell someone.

These can help you if you feel sad or worried.

It can just take time to go away.”

The illustrations are colourful and reassuring for any little person and the reading of this could open the way to some very beneficial conversation about the feelings faced by smaller humans who are often unable to articulate their inner feelings.

Highly recommended for home or school bookshelves for readers from 3 upwards.

Six – M. M. Vaughan

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six

Simon & Schuster

  • Margaret K. McElderry Books
  • ISBN 9781481420709 |
  • May 2016

This is speculative fiction for your young readers at its best. If you have kids who are into the whole premise of technology and scientific discoveries at their best – or worst – they will gobble this up.

Parker Banks hates that he has to move to America. His mum is dead, his father is determined to take up a new job working for some secretive organisation. His little sister Emma seems quite reconciled. Even her congenital deafness doesn’t deter her from making new friends. Their father’s invention of a communication implant so that Emma can ‘hear’ all Parker’s and their dad’s thoughts – a great bonus, though some might think it is simply natural telepathy.

Just as Parker thinks he can’t take any more, his father who has been working overtime on his project is kidnapped and suddenly his and Emma’s safety are jeopardised by the ‘Six’ mystery.

His only friend Michael, along with a trusty chauffeur/factotum, is his ally as he and Emma determine to rescue their dad.

A complex, fast-moving plot with twists and turns make this a riveting read.

Just how close are we to some of the scientific surprises in this story I wonder?

Take your kids from ten upwards into a world of future possibilities with this. They won’t be disappointed.

The Stupendously Spectacular Spelling Bee – Deborah Abela

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Random House Australia

ISBN: 9781925324822

Published: 01/08/2016

Imprint: Random House Australia Children’s

 

RRP $14.99

In small country towns there is often a vigorous community spirit, especially for the ‘battlers’ and this story exemplifies that.

India Wimple lives with her family – Dad, Mum, little brother Boo and Nanna Flo – in Yungabilla. Nanna came to live with them after a broken bone and losing Grandpop, Mum left her teaching job to look after and homeschool Boo who has chronic and severe asthma and Dad lost his job writing for the local newspaper when the business closed down and now does odd jobs. All in all it’s been a tough few years for the family.

One highlight of their weekly routine is to gather to watch everyone’s favourite TV show ‘The Stupendously Spectacular Spelling Bee’ when kids from all over Australia compete to be the next top speller. India who has always loved words is simply an ace and spells along with the show proving over and over again her extraordinary skill.

Naturally it doesn’t take much for her family to come up with the idea of India competing. There’s just one problem. India is so terribly nervous in front of people she knows she would never be able to manage such a competition.

However, she reckons without the support of her whole town and not just her family. India’s journey from her small town to the stage of the Sydney Opera House is full of humour and heart-warming moments.

Sending a really positive message about striving for dreams and having a support network this is a great read for children from around 9 years upwards.

It would also make a terrific ‘read aloud’.

Welcome to Country – Aunty Joy Murphy & Lisa Kennedy

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Walker Books Australia

ISBN: 9781922244871
Imprint: BLACK DOG BOOKS
Distributor: Harper Collins Distribution Services for Australia and New Zealand

Release Date: August 1, 2016

RRP $24.99

Readers of this blog will already be aware of my passion for our Indigenous creators. As a proud mother and grandmother of Wiradjuri kids I particularly appreciate being able to share so many aspects of both traditional and contemporary First Australian culture.

This book is just beautiful – simply stunning. Aunty Joy Murphy is an Elder of the Wurundjeri People and her text provides an embracing and generous welcome into the culture of her community. An experienced and well-respected consultant to government bodies in Victoria, this is her first book.

Welcome to the traditional lands of the Wurundjeri People. We are part of this land and the land is part of us. This is where we come from. Wominjeka Wurundjeri balluk yearmenn koondee bik. Welcome to Country.

I have observed that while many Australians are now well used to a ‘Welcome to Country’ at gatherings, there are few who understood the ‘why’ or ‘how’ of this. This is just one aspect explained in this text.

The fabulous and atmospheric illustrations by Indigenous artist Lisa Kennedy provide a perfect backdrop to the text as the book outlines simply and accessibly various aspects of the Wurundjeri People’s history and place.

If you are seeking books which will offer a rich experience for cross-cultural studies, this is a marvellous addition to your collection. It will certainly be used in my forthcoming unit of inquiry with the lower school girls.

Highly recommended for sharing throughout all primary classes.

The Moonlight Dreamers – Siobhan Curham

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moonlightdreamers

ISBN: 9781406365825
Imprint: WALKER PAPERBACK
Distributor: Harper Collins Distribution Services for Australia and New Zealand

Release Date: July 1, 2016

Australian RRP: $16.99
New Zealand RRP: $18.99

 

Four teenage girls couldn’t be more different in personality, home life, culture or beliefs; yet one thing brings them together. They are all fed up with other people, whether peers or adults, telling them how they should look, what they should wear, how they should think and behave. Each feels that there is worth in their own personal expression of themselves yet each is continually bombarded with negativity or bullying from others.

Amber is an Oscar Wilde devotee with two dads and a penchant for wearing tailored clothes and collecting anything vintage. Totally over being friendless and victimised by the fashionista clique at her school she sets about recruiting some like-minded girls for a ‘moonlight dreamers’ society.

More by chance than her planned design she encounters Maali, Sky and Rose.

Maali is a shy and reserved Indian girl whose passion is photography. She has an unwavering belief in Lakshmi the Hindi goddess of good fortune and prosperity. She longs to overcome her shyness enough to talk to a boy – after all, how will she find her soulmate if she can’t even hold a conversation with the opposite sex.

Sky lost her mum when she was eleven. Since then she and her dad Liam have travelled the world like gypsies as he teaches yoga in ashrams all over the globe. Now that she’s in her senior schooling, Liam has decided that they should be more settled and they have been living in their canal boat while Liam has pursued teaching yoga to the rich and famous. Their hippie lifestyle is under threat as Liam has fallen for an aging though still stunning model, Savannah. Moving in with Savannah means also moving in with her sullen daughter Rose, who is being pressured into being as beautiful and sought after as her mother. The monumental clashes between these two are epic.  Sky yearns to be a performance poet and Rose, in an unlikely rebellion against her mother has her heart set on being a pâtissier.

The rocky road of bonding between these four girls makes for a fabulous narrative and in my opinion accurately and truthfully reflects the often turbulent nature of teen girls.

This is a story about more than just friendship. It is about being true to yourself despite the obstacles in your path.

I highly recommend it for readers from around twelve up. There are some considerations for some as there is a sexting incident and some sexual references. However, I feel that in the context of the story these are a valuable lesson about the pressures put on young girls.

RFDS Adventures #4 & #5 – George Ivanoff

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Fast Flight (RFDS #4)

Random House Australia

ISBN: 9780857988829

Published: 02/05/2016

Imprint: Random House Australia Children’s

RRP $14.99

 

Young Dillon is pretty much like any other boy of his age. He loves his cricket, his room is always pretty messy and he likes hanging with his best mate Jay. Pretty much the only thing that sets Dillon apart is that he has a rare genetic disorder called Crigler-Najjar Syndrome. Less than one in a million people are born with this and the essence is that it affects Dillon’s liver to a point of such damage that his only option is a liver transplant.

Finally the time arrives after so long waiting but the problem is that it’s the middle of the night when the call comes and Dillon needs to get from Adelaide to Melbourne as fast as possible. Enter the RFDS – not just the saviours of the remote outback and bush patients. Inspired by a true case this is another riveting read in the fantastic series.

 

Medical Mission (#5)

 

medicalmission

ISBN: 9780857988805

Published: 02/05/2016

Imprint: Random House Australia Children’s

 

RRP $14.99

Just outside Coober Pedy a RFDS plane lands in the middle of the night at a large cattle station.  Help has arrived to help Josh’s mum with the delivery of their new baby. But when complications arise Mum and bub are airlifted to hospital and Josh is left with his Dad to help things keep on track on the property. Josh can’t help worrying about his mother and baby sister especially when no one is telling him anything.  One thing he knows is that the RFDS is

a vital service for those in remote locations and he and his classmates initiate a fundraiser for the organisation. Just as things seem to be going along okay, Josh is bitten by a deadly snake and it’s his turn to be airlifted. Lucky medical intervention has come a long way with snakebite since the early days and Josh’s outcome – as well as that of his family – is a positive one.

 

This is such a worthy series to add to your collection. The true-to-life stories, the information carefully woven in, the compelling tension of emergency situations and the opportunity for readers to ‘walk a mile in another kid’s shoes’ are all superb reasons. Of course, the fact that sales support the RFDS are another bonus.

Highly recommended for readers from around ten upwards.

RFDS Adventures #4 & #5 – George Ivanoff

 

Fast Flight (RFDS #4)

Random House Australia

ISBN: 9780857988829

Published: 02/05/2016

Imprint: Random House Australia Children’s

RRP $14.99

 

Young Dillon is pretty much like any other boy of his age. He loves his cricket, his room is always pretty messy and he likes hanging with his best mate Jay. Pretty much the only thing that sets Dillon apart is that he has a rare genetic disorder called Crigler-Najjar Syndrome. Less than one in a million people are born with this and the essence is that it affects Dillon’s liver to a point of such damage that his only option is a liver transplant.

Finally the time arrives after so long waiting but the problem is that it’s the middle of the night when the call comes and Dillon needs to get from Adelaide to Melbourne as fast as possible. Enter the RFDS – not just the saviours of the remote outback and bush patients. Inspired by a true case this is another riveting read in the fantastic series.

 

Medical Mission (#5)

 

 

ISBN: 9780857988805

Published: 02/05/2016

Imprint: Random House Australia Children’s

 

RRP $14.99

Just outside Coober Pedy a RFDS plane lands in the middle of the night at a large cattle station.  Help has arrived to help Josh’s mum with the delivery of their new baby. But when complications arise Mum and bub are airlifted to hospital and Josh is left with his Dad to help things keep on track on the property. Josh can’t help worrying about his mother and baby sister especially when no one is telling him anything.  One thing he knows is that the RFDS is

a vital service for those in remote locations and he and his classmates initiate a fundraiser for the organisation. Just as things seem to be going along okay, Josh is bitten by a deadly snake and it’s his turn to be airlifted. Lucky medical intervention has come a long way with snakebite since the early days and Josh’s outcome – as well as that of his family – is a positive one.

 

This is such a worthy series to add to your collection. The true-to-life stories, the information carefully woven in, the compelling tension of emergency situations and the opportunity for readers to ‘walk a mile in another kid’s shoes’ are all superb reasons. Of course, the fact that sales support the RFDS are another bonus.

Highly recommended for readers from around ten upwards.

RFDS Adventures #4 & #5 – George Ivanoff

 

Fast Flight (RFDS #4)

Random House Australia

ISBN: 9780857988829

Published: 02/05/2016

Imprint: Random House Australia Children’s

RRP $14.99

 

Young Dillon is pretty much like any other boy of his age. He loves his cricket, his room is always pretty messy and he likes hanging with his best mate Jay. Pretty much the only thing that sets Dillon apart is that he has a rare genetic disorder called Crigler-Najjar Syndrome. Less than one in a million people are born with this and the essence is that it affects Dillon’s liver to a point of such damage that his only option is a liver transplant.

Finally the time arrives after so long waiting but the problem is that it’s the middle of the night when the call comes and Dillon needs to get from Adelaide to Melbourne as fast as possible. Enter the RFDS – not just the saviours of the remote outback and bush patients. Inspired by a true case this is another riveting read in the fantastic series.

 

Medical Mission (#5)

 

 

ISBN: 9780857988805

Published: 02/05/2016

Imprint: Random House Australia Children’s

 

RRP $14.99

Just outside Coober Pedy a RFDS plane lands in the middle of the night at a large cattle station.  Help has arrived to help Josh’s mum with the delivery of their new baby. But when complications arise Mum and bub are airlifted to hospital and Josh is left with his Dad to help things keep on track on the property. Josh can’t help worrying about his mother and baby sister especially when no one is telling him anything.  One thing he knows is that the RFDS is

a vital service for those in remote locations and he and his classmates initiate a fundraiser for the organisation. Just as things seem to be going along okay, Josh is bitten by a deadly snake and it’s his turn to be airlifted. Lucky medical intervention has come a long way with snakebite since the early days and Josh’s outcome – as well as that of his family – is a positive one.

 

This is such a worthy series to add to your collection. The true-to-life stories, the information carefully woven in, the compelling tension of emergency situations and the opportunity for readers to ‘walk a mile in another kid’s shoes’ are all superb reasons. Of course, the fact that sales support the RFDS are another bonus.

Highly recommended for readers from around ten upwards.

Clementine Rose and the Paris Puzzle (#12) – Jacqueline Harvey

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paris

Random House Australia

ISBN: 9780857987884

Published: 27/06/2016

Imprint: Random House Australia Children’s

 

RRP $14.99

With great timing for Bastille Day favourite of many Clementine Rose is off to Paris with her family – both the old and the new (following the engagement of her mother Clarissa and Drew).

Clemmie is beside herself with excitement not only because of all the exciting things to see like the Eiffel Tower but because she will be visiting her very best friend Sophie. Readers will remember that Sophie’s family had to return to Paris for a time to take care of their unwell grandfather. As usual there are many adventures in store but most especially that revolving around a very famous but very strange puppeteer, a mysterious neighbour and a pig-napping!

How absolutely adorable is the new cover with its tri-colour design?  And the image of Lavender in his beret and jacket is just too sweet as well.

This will be a highly sought after new book on your shelves and I highly recommend for those little readers who will devour up their series of beginning chapter books.