Here’s another terrific book to add to your discussions about sibling rivalry as well as Mighty Girls. Nova’s brother knows she’s up to no good. He’s getting quite fed up with copping the blame for her nefarious actions like taking Dad’s freshly baked muffins or tangling up Granny’s wool, not to mention taking biggest brother Harry’s science kit.
He’s determined to uncover her peccadilloes and reveal to all that she is not the angelic child everyone believes her to be.
When he follows her out into the yard he discovers, with much astonishment, what she’s really up to. Nova is waging a battle against an alien invasion! She deftly foils their plot with the lure of muffins, her throw-net crafted from wool and smartly packs them into the spaceship built from Harry’s set, hurtling them back into space.
Astute and observant readers will love to spot the alien hiding in each illustration until the horde of them is finally revealed and will thoroughly enjoy the vibrancy of each spread. Nova’s brother is so impressed with her courageous and defiant defeat of the invading creatures that he willingly takes the blame for her being out of doors so late and with that, the jealousy disappears and is replaced by pride in his awesome little sister.
A thoroughly enjoyable romp of a read which young children will love and will provide a springboard for many a fantastical discussion on ways in which invading aliens might be thwarted.
Love it! Recommended for little humans from around Prep upwards.
This is the second Ross Welford book I have read and reviewed [The 1, 000 Year Old Boy] and once again I am tremendously impressed in his story-telling which takes something unbelievable and makes it completely feasible.
A small village in Northumberland is shocked and in turmoil after the mysterious disappearance of 12 year old Tammy especially of course her parents and her twin brother Ethan. Despite vigorous and thorough searching there seem to be no clues. That is until Ethan reluctantly accompanies relative newcomer and definitely odd Iggy for a spot of fishing to ‘take his mind off’ the situation. The boys don’t have any luck with the fishing but they do ‘catch’ something – the realisation of an invisible spacecraft and the appearance of a definitely visible fur-covered tailed humanoid called Hellyann – who indicates that she not only knows where Tammy is but how to rescue her.
Imagine a civilisation that keeps animals in a zoo for the edification of its own species – oh that’s right – but imagine if that civilisation is located on a remote planet in another galaxy and the animals kept are actually humans. That’s where Tammy has been taken by one of the ‘Hunters’ of the planet Anthalla. This race has become so uniform and so controlled in its past 500 years of history that no member of it dares to disagree with any of the strict protocols in place. There may be order and peace but it’s at a price – with no individuality or emotions allowed. The flaw in that is that there are just a few Anthallans whose ancestors were of ‘mixed’ DNA so that their descendants retain some human traits – such as emotional responses. And Hellyann is one of these ‘Hearters’ and knows that there is something inherently wrong with abducting a human, removing it from its family and keeping it sedated and contained. Hence she sets out on a mission to rescue Tammy but enlisting Ethan and Iggy.
There is much humour to be had in this narrative but also a great deal of thought-provoking concepts to consider. Once again Welford has crafted a story which demonstrates the unerring ability of children to bridge the sometimes vast gap between others and forge unlikely friendships as well as rising to challenges which reveal their inner reserves of determination, resilience, courage and compassion.
Another truly worthwhile book to share with your readers from around 8ish upwards, I highly recommend it for Middle Primary to Lower Secondary students.
If you or your readers haven’t caught onto this series yet I would urge you to do so. While we all know it’s important to have narratives which deal with significant issues or concepts, it’s equally important to just have a chuckle in my opinion – and Maudlin Towers certainly does this ‘par excellence’.
Very reminiscent of Ronald Searle’s fabulous St Trinian’s and his collaboration with Geoffrey Willans on the Molesworth series, Maudlin Towers and it’s chief characters Mildew and Sponge are dim-witted inept students in an outstandingly chaotic school which always seems to be running into adventures of the strangest ilk.
In this new adventure the school is inundated by some rather odd girls and their teacher while at the same time Mildew and Sponge witness what they at first believe to be a meteor crashing to earth. As the story unravels it becomes apparent that the ‘meteor’ is in fact a space ship and its occupants have dispersed – coincidence? I think not. When a second space vehicle arrives complete with large scary but hilarious mechanical spiders the pace quickens and predictably further rumbustifcations ensue.
I cannot say I detect any deep meaningful concepts (except perhaps to not always be mentally consumed by the thought of biscuits!) but it is all raging good fun wonderfully written and illustrated by Priestley.
Do your kiddos a favour and get some humour into their bookshelves – indeed why not buy all three if you have not already done so!
Highly recommended for readers from around 8 years upwards.
Hast thou ever feared the imminent arrival of strange googly-eyed alien monsters? Dost thou fret over total destruction of the known world by hideous extra-terrestrials of extraordinary ugliness?
You may rest assured that the solution is at hand. Join Sid, his little sister Wendy and evil-genius neighbour aka the Mighty Professor Skeletron as they thwart an alien invasion caused by Sid’s astounding adaptation of Romeo & Juliet for a school assignment.
When Mr Pilchard, Sid’s vile teacher, threatens the class and especially Sid of dire consequences should they not produce their best piece of creative writing ever, Sid seeks inspiration and advice from the evil-genius. Mighty Professor Skeletron’s psychic cat directs Sid’s attention to the works of Shakespeare, greatest writer of all time.
The trouble lies in the fact that Sid makes his story just too similar to the original and mayhem ensues as he reads aloud his prize-winning story instigating a chain of events that sees the intrepid trio travelling in time via potato power to redress the catastrophe. Changing the course of history has never been so simple or so hilarious!
Kids from around 8 and up will love this latest offering from the talented Falk and Flowers duo. Highly recommended for your primary library shelves!