Tag Archives: Andrew Daddo

Hooray for Puffin’s 80th Anniversary!

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Yes yes! the celebrations are well and truly underway – as you will have detected with some recent posts 🙂 but it’s not just about the always-fantastic titles, both classic and new. It’s time for excitement and give-aways too!

Did you know that if you buy two Puffin books from participating bookstores you too can have your own Puffin water bottle? I absolutely adore mine and you can have one just like it!

Participating local-ish stores include:

Dymocks, North Lakes, Chermside & Brisbane

Harry Hartog’s, Maroochydore

But wait – there’s more! One lucky Australian school will win a mural painted by Stephen Michael King and a visit from Andrew Daddo plus class sets of Atticus von Tasticus books to mark the release of the second book in the series! The individual student who creates the winning entry will receive a signed limited edition Stephen Michael King drawing and a set of books.

What are you waiting for? Get your kiddos onto it NOW! and happy happy birthday Puffin! We love you loads!

Puffin Books Australia

Just Breathe – Andrew Daddo

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Penguin Australia

9780143573623

July 30, 2018

RRP: $17.99

It must be hard to be so multi-talented *wry face*.  Andrew Daddo has certainly proven his ability as not only a media figure but a very able and engaging writer.

I’ve not been enthralled in recent times by a lot of the YA coming my way – it’s been too much ‘same oh’ for my taste but this is fresh and sparky and real in a way that will grab readers from the very start.

Emily needs to leave her country town for a while. She has a mysterious growth near her brain which requires specialist attention in Melbourne. She and her mum put on a positive and brave face as they leave home, Dad and Siss to go stay with Aunty Astrid. Emily is not only nervous about her condition but also the prospect of a new school, no friends and the unknown in general.

Hendrix is a very recognisable character. He is a boy whose father drives his own failed athletic ambitions and his hidden guilt through his son, pushing him harder and harder to achieve an Olympic dream with his running.

These two could not be very much different and yet in many ways are similar. Both face difficult challenges, both feel isolated from the normal teenage social existence and both are essentially lonely.

When they meet in the park – Hendrix running and Emily walking her new puppy – it is not a situation that seems likely to fire a romance. Yet both find themselves continually thinking about the other. Their romance develops in spite of their respective difficulties. Daddo has beautifully created the respective parents alongside the young people’s story. Emily’s mum, loving and supportive, understanding and compassionate, firm but realistic and Hendrix’ father, immovable, almost unbelievably strict and controlling, and it would seem without a shred of real paternal care and concern.

As the narrative develops and reaches its denouement the characters become fully rounded and grow to the point where the reader is totally embroiled in their lives.

I highly recommend this for both boys and girls from around 13 years upwards. There is some sexual activity and some ‘bad’ language which some find disturbing so err on the side of caution if this would not fit your collection’s ethos. However that being said it is absolutely believable and realistic and many teens would relate to its themes.