Review + Teachers’ Notes: ‘There’s a Bug on My Arm That Won’t Let Go’

Title: There's a Bug on My Arm That Won't Let Go Author/illustrator: David Mackintosh (see interview here) Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers Australia  Age Range: early childhood and adults who need a laugh Themes: bugs, childhood worries, insects, visual literacy Click on title...

Review + Teachers’ Notes: ‘Sonam and the Silence’

Title: 'Sonam and the Silence' Author: Eddie Ayres Illustrator: Ronak Taher Publisher: Allen & Unwin  Age Range: middle - upper primary Themes: music, resilience, courage, curiosity, Afghanistan, Taliban. Click on title links or cover image to purchase. A lyrical fable-like story by the well-known musician,...

Review + Teachers’ Notes: ‘Want to Play Trucks?’

Title: 'Want to Play Trucks?' Author: Ann Stott Illustrator: Bob Graham Publisher: Walker Books Themes: gender stereotypes, ethnicity, play, free play, social skills, toddlers, trucks, sandpits, family, society. Click on title links or cover image to purchase. Jack likes trucks. Alex...

Review of ‘Claris The Chicest Mouse in Paris’

Author/Illustrator: Megan Hess Publisher: Hardie Grant Egmont Ages: 3+ Age Range: early childhood - lower primary Themes: Parisian, Paris, adventure, journey, fashion, courage, compassion, friendship Click on title links or cover image to purchase.  Acclaimed Australian fashion illustrator, Megan Hess, has...

Review: The Incredible Freedom Machines

Title: The Incredible Freedom Machines Author: Kirli Saunders Illustrator: Matt Ottley Publisher: Scholastic Press Themes: freedom; boundaries; persistence; imagination; wonder; freedom; hope; machinery; tinkering; motors; cogs; motorbikes; third person narrative; visual literacy. I’m long overdue on my review...

Review of ‘The Last Peach’

Written and illustrated by Gus Gordon. Age Range: early childhood – adult lovers of illustration. Themes: sharing, friendship, friends, bugs, nature. One fine summer's day two bugs discover the most beautiful peach of the season and are...

Review of ‘Mr Bambuckle’s Remarkables’

The class in room 12B has a new teacher, and nothing is ever going to be the same . . .  The very best school based stories resonate with children and teachers alike and the...

Review of ‘A Boat of Stars’

Title: A Boat of Stars: New Poems to Inspire and Enchant Editors: Margaret Connolly and Natalie Jane Prior Publisher: Harper Collins Age Range: babies – middle primary Themes: poetry, rhyme, language, anthology, family, feelings, Indigenous, animals, food, identity,...

Australia Illustrated Map

(and a LEGO Room) Under our internal stairs is this teeny little room...very Harry Potter-esque really; when Harry moved in with the Dursley family, instead of being given a real bedroom, he was kept in...

Win: La La La: A Story of Hope by Kate diCamillo & Jaime Kim

One of our favourite visiting authors this year, Kate diCamillo, is publishing her first picture book in ten years! It's an inspiring nearly wordless collaboration with illustrator Jaime Kim who works in gouache and...

For All Creatures by Glenda Millard and Rebecca Cool

I recently discovered that my library copy of 'For All Creatures' was missing in action and I rather scrambled to find a replacement as it is one of my all time favourite picture books...

Book Launch: Lucy’s Book

The launch of ‘Lucy’s Book’ last week was truly beautiful and a huge thanks must go to St Aidan's Anglican Girls' School for allowing me to host the event in our lovely Junior School...

The 13-Storey Treehouse Comes to QPAC

We are four weeks into Term One here in Queensland and already I'm thinking of the Easter break - mostly because I have no idea how my tired little preppie child is going to...

Launch of ‘Lucy’s Book’

It would be fair to say that I am just a little bit excited about this new book. 'Lucy's Book' is a book for anyone who has ever loved a book with all their...

Review of ‘This is Banjo Paterson’

Andrew Barton 'Banjo' Paterson loved to write poetry. He loved hunting and fishing and horses, too, especially a horse named Banjo. In this exceptional picture book, young readers can celebrate the life of a...

Review of ‘The Patchwork Bike’

When you live in a village at the edge of the No-Go Desert, you need to make your own fun. That’s when you and your brothers get inventive and build a bike from scratch,...

‘The Song From Somewhere Else’ and the Imaginary Worlds of A.F. Harrold

It is always a great privilege to receive a review from Joy Lawn*...always.  A.F. Harrold has a special kind of imagination. Many readers of children’s books will know his work from his CILIP Kate Greenaway and Carnegie...

Review of ‘The Tales of Mrs Mancini’

Title: 'The Tales of Mrs Mancini' Author: Natalie Jane Prior Illustrator: Cheryl Orsini Publisher: Harper Collins Age Range: early childhood; cake and/or cat lovers of all ages. Themes: community; friendship; family; cats; cake; pastries; bakery; adventure. From the creators of...

Book People: Lance Balchin

So many, many books come across my desk that it takes something pretty special to wow me these days. 'Mechanica' has wowed me and more. It is innovative in a way I have not...

Nick Falk and Tony Flowers

Thanks to Penguin Random House, we have just had a visit from Tony Flowers and Nick Falk who are two of my favs in this children's literature business - though I did give up...