The BFG by Roald Dahl

flynn-bfgThe BFG stands for The Big Friendly Giant. It is a very long book and there is a movie too. It is about a little girl called Sophie who lives in an orphanage because she doesn’t have a mum or dad. The BFG gives you dreams and he comes and takes Sophie home with him to where the giants live. The book is about love and kindness. I like Roald Dahl books especially The Twits and The BFG.

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Alice’s food A-Z by Alice Zaslavsky

cynthia-alices-foodAlice has a great sense of humour and loves her food. Adults will recognise Alice from Masterchef and kids will from her hosting role of Kitchen Whiz. Including fun food facts and some recipes this is a nice introduction to a range of foods – some that will not be so well known to kids such as quince and Jerusalem artichoke. I think kids would enjoy this more if the recipes were centre stage – they could try the recipes and then find out about the ingredients. It will be a good book for adults to share with their kids and explore some great food.

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One minute’s silence by David Metzenthen

one-minutes-silenceThis book is for older kids and adults. The illustrations are amazing and add so much more meaning to the words of the story. One minute’s silence allows you to reflect on war and the ordinary young men who were sent to fight. This is a unique story as it also invites you to think about the Turkish soldiers as well (their faces are drawn just like the Australians – they were no different to us – they were fighting for their homeland). Next time I observe the minute of silence I will be thinking of this book and what it meant for these men who went to war.

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Rooftoppers by Katherine Rundell

rooftoppers-by-katherine-rundellIn the early 20th century the Victorian liner, Queen Mary, sinks leaving a 1 year old girl with “hair the colour of lightning” floating in a cello case in the middle of the Channel. Her rescuer, the eccentric scholar Charles Maxim, names her Sophie, takes her home to London and brings her up to be as eccentric as he is. “Never ignore a possible” is Sophie’s motto.  Not only does Sophie insist that her mother is still alive, she claims to know that she was a cello player in the ship’s orchestra. When Sophie is to be taken from Charles’s care and moved to an orphanage, the pair escape to Paris, to trace the cello maker whose address they have discovered inside Sophie’s cello case. So begins Sophie’s quest in search of her mother and the unexpected help she receives from the rooftoppers. Continue reading

Murder most unladylike by Robin Stevens

murder-most-unladylike-by-robin-stevensWinner of the Waterstone’s Best Fiction Award 2015, kids over 9 years old, who aren’t daunted by a book of 322 pages, will get a thrill from this book and might even look for the rest in the series. Set in the Deepdean Boarding School for Girls in England in the 1930s the girls get up to some pretty serious sleuthing, narrowly escaping becoming victims themselves. This is the first real investigation for the Wells and Wong Detective Society (excluding the missing tie case of course!). Daisy and Hazel find it is hard to investigate a murder when they can’t even prove that a murder has taken place because the body has disappeared. This is a new series and can be found in the kid’s section of the library.

The White Mouse by Peter Gouldthorpe

DONEAmy White MouseNominated for a 2016 Children’s Book Council Award – The White Mouse : The Story of Nancy Wake by Peter Gouldthorpe. This looks like a picture book, but it is pretty dense with information so it’s definitely for older kids. The story of Nancy Wake, the Allies’ most decorated woman in WWII, is packed full of danger and excitement and it is well illustrated with big, realistic drawings. Every child should know about the amazing life of Nancy Wake!

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Soon by Morris Gleitzman

Felix and Zelda or Once, Then, Now, After, Soon by Morris GleitzmanSoon by Morris Gleitzman is well deserved the nomination for Children’s Book Council of Australia’s Book Week Award for Younger Readers. This whole series about children trying to survive the holocaust has torn my heart and I highly recommend that everyone gets their hands on these books and experience the innocence and horror of children in war.

When we left young Felix in the fourth book, After, World War Two was coming to an end and he had lost a lot. Continuing the story in Soon the war is over but danger still lingers. In Soon, the Soviet Red Army has pushed out Nazi German forces from occupied Poland, and Gleitzman gives us glimpses into this period of social unrest. Continue reading

The books of beginning by John Stephens

Books of beginning by John StephensReminiscent of the many fantasy novels this trilogy is another enjoyable read. It starts with The Emerald Atlas on a snowy winter’s night, when three small children are chased from their home by the forces of a merciless darkness. Thus begins the first stage of a journey that will take Kate, Michael, and Emma from orphanage to orphanage and through time to dangerous and secret corners of the world…a journey of friends and foe and of magic and chaos.  And—if an ancient prophecy is correct—what they do can change history.  A fast paced adventure for readers 10 years and older. If you like The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S Lewis and His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman you will like this trilogy.

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