Looking for fun new books to share with your child? Look no further!
Ages 6 to 8 / February 27, 2017

Florette By Anna Walker, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 2018. Nature loving Mae moves with her family from her beloved home and garden to a big crowded city. This story gives us a reflective look at the difference between city and country living. Mae is nostalgic about her former home and sad about moving to the city because of all the buildings and concrete and lack of nature, until one day she finds Florette, a forest (garden store) in the heart of the city. Mae plucks a tiny shoot from the sidewalk outside Florette, takes it home and plants it…and this is the beginning of her very own garden. Mae continues to make her part of the grey city green and beautiful, just like her old garden. Her life becomes brighter, and the new plants allow her to accept the changes that she has had to endure by moving house. This book may show your child how they too can find a creative solution to improve their own environment. Anne Walker’s illustrations are stylised and soft, drawing the reader into the intricacies of Mae’s life and her perspective on it. There are loads of items of interest on every page…

Cover of a book showing a drawing of a rabbit wearing glasses and losing his mind
Rodney Loses It!
Ages 6 to 8 , Award Winners , Featured / January 9, 2017

Rodney Loses It! By Michael Gerard Bauer and Chrissie Krebs, Scholastic Australia, 2017. ‘Rodney was a rabbit who loved nothing more than drawing. He never found it tiresome, tedious or boring. But then one day, disaster struck! The one thing Rodney feared, while working at his drawing desk his pen just… DISAPPEARED! ‘ Rodney Loses It! is by far and away one of my favourite reads in a long time. I LOVE THIS BOOK! Rodney loves to draw. He draws all day and all night. However, Rodney finds himself in all sorts of trouble when his favorite pen, Penny, goes missing. Follow Rodney’s journey as he searches high and low for Penny. I also love it when the illustrations show the reader something that the character in the story doesn’t know. Your child will know more than Rodney during this story, which is something that will delight children. A very clever read with a funny surprise ending! Download some teacher’s notes. View some literacy activities. Awards The Book of the Year: Early Childhood 2018 by Children’s Book Council of Australia.

Cover of a book showing cartoon characters of 3 sheep and one wolf dressed up as a sheep
Wolf Espionage
Ages 3 to 5 , Award Winners , Child Authors / November 5, 2016

Wolf Espionage By Elanor Parkinson and Dave Atze, Redgum Book Club, 2015. ‘Wold Espionage is a rollicking story of an undercover wolf named Wiliam whose ill-fated approach to espionage leads him to vegetarianism.’ Reminiscent of Wile E. Coyote, Wolf Espionage tells the tale of a wolf called William that lived on Wellwood Farm. William was so hungry that he decided to go undercover and try and find some tucker! He dresses up as different animals he finds on the farm and tries to befriend them, but they all whack him and poke him, because they know he isn’t really one of them. Wolf Espionage follows a days-of-the-week format where William the Wolf approaches different animals on different days of the week. William discovers that if he disguises himself as an apple or a peapod, then he doesn’t get whacked or poked, and he discovers that it is easier to become vegetarian than try to eat the animals. Wolf Espionage is quite a delightful little story, and it was written by a young 12-year-old girl! Awards Winner: 2016 Young Writers’ Award Picture Book category The Young Writers Award is open to young authors aged between 9 and 13 years. Young writers have…

Cover of a book showing a young girl wearing a party hat carrying her younger sibling through a house littered with cleaning items
Hattie Helps Out
Ages 3 to 5 , Ages 6 to 8 / February 24, 2016

Hattie Helps Out By Jane Godwin, Davina Bell and Freya Blackwood, Allen and Unwin, 2016. ‘It’s a busy day at Hattie’s house. There’s a lot to do before Dad’s birthday party. Hattie is being very helpful, until it’s time for her afternoon nap. Hattie’s not even sleepy! But Mama looks tired. Very tired…’ Hattie has some very big ideas about helping Mama out with the party preparations. One day Hattie Helps Out at home. She is a great helper around the house until it is time for a nap. Hattie says she is too old to sleep in the daytime, but Mama insists. Who falls asleep, do you think? Mama falls asleep, and Hattie watches her for a while before deciding that she will help out greatly by ticking off the list of things Mama had said she needed to do before the party. Meanwhile, baby Lottie, Hattie’s younger sibling, has been sleeping in the washing basket while Hattie and Mama were having their rest in bed. Hattie slips seamlessly into the roleplay of mother of the house as she tidies and arranges, and even complains of not having ‘time for a crying baby today’. The authors have perfectly captured…

Cover of a book showing an illustration of two children flying on the back of a dragon
Day Dreamers
Ages 3 to 5 , Ages 6 to 8 / August 26, 2014

Day Dreamers By Emily Winfield Martin ‘How do you find day dreams? You don’t need to search for secret doors or magic words to speak. Your imaginings will carry you anywhere you seek…’ Day Dreamers is a journey of imagination. A lovely look at the magical possibilities of the imagination in everyday situations. I think this book encourages children to use their imaginations in everyday situations, for example, imagining the sound of turning pages in a book as though it were actually the sound of griffin wings. I actually preferred her book, The Wonderful Things You Will Be to this one.

Cover of a book in green with indigenous Australian artwork and a football in the centre
Age Group , Ages 6 to 8 , Australiana / July 1, 2012

Marngrook The long-ago story of Aussie Rules By Titta Secombe and Grace Fielding, Magabala Books, 2012. ‘A wonderful kids’ story that shares the origins of our national game.’ The beginnings of how Aussie Rules football was invented is sometimes a controversial topic. Marngrook is a ball game that was played by first Australians in north-west Victoria over 150 years ago. This kids picture book is set in the traditional country of the Djab-Wurrung and Jardwadjali clans in the foothills of Duwul, the highest mountain in the Grampians. The opening pages give some factual content about the people and the region, as well as translations for some Jardwadjali language words. The main character, Jaara, a young Djab-Wurrung and Jardwadjali boy, is given a new toy from his father, Wawi. It is made from the skin of a banya, or ringtail possum. I found Marngrook a little bit gruesome, as the Elder grabs an innocent animal to kill and eat and make a ball from its skin. The story goes into the details of how the pieces of the animal are preserved to assist in the making of the marngrook ball. It is, however, educational, and would possibly appeal to young boys who…

Cover of a book with an illustration of a large tree and one children playing on and around it
All Through the Year
Ages 6 to 8 , Educational / September 27, 2010

All Through the Year By Jane Godwin and Anna Walker, Penguin Viking, 2010. ‘Open this book and travel your way all through the year and treasure each day.’ From this well-known author/illustrator duo comes All Through the Year. Reading like a collection of Shakespearean sonnets, All Through the Year invites the reader to share in this rhyming journey through the seasons and activities of a year in the life of an everyday Australian family. The different style Jane Godwin has used in this kids book is also great for teaching children about different styles of writing. I don’t think I’ve seen any other children’s book author us the same format, it’s quite unique to this author (she also applied the same format in Today We Have No Plans). This is a great book to teach children about the months of the year, the seasons that accompany those months, and the different holidays or events that also coincide. All Through the Year is another fine work of art by Anna Walker, beautifully illustrated, and if I am not mistaken, we are seeing the same family that met in Today We Have No Plans! We are certainly seeing the same tree in the…