Review: Grumbelina – Esther Krogdahl and Aleksandra Szmidt (illustrator)

Grumbelina

Esther Krogdahl

Aleksandra Szmidt (illustrator)

Hachette Children’s’ Books

ISBN: 9781869714291

RRP $16.99

 

Description:

Hazel Spratt was an agreeable child. Never impatient, unruly or wild. But when Hazel turns three-and-a-half, her parents notice a change. She is no longer their polite and pleasant daughter, Hazel, she is now Grumbelina, ‘a grumpy child, so disgruntled yet small, with a list of complaints that could cover a wall.’ Settle down and relax for a moment, this humorous and delightfully illustrated picture book takes a tongue-in-cheek look at tantrums – perfect for every home.

 

My View:

Grumbelina is a book that anyone who cares for young children, actually let’s reframe that – anyone who cares for any child/toddler, pre-schooler/teen will relate to this book😊

This book is a tongue in cheek look at the multiple personalities that make a complete child; happy, sad, engaging, enchanting… grumbly.  Those incredulous moments – when the peas touched the carrots on the plate, the cup was the wrong colour, you didn’t mind read the situation correctly, you should have known…you know the list 😊

 

Delightfully illustrated, a humorous exploration of childhood, this book is sure to put a smile on your and your toddlers face.

 

 

 

Review: What Do You Call Your Grandpa? Ashleigh Barton & Martina Heiduezek

What Do You Call Your Grandpa

Ashleigh Burton

Illustrated by Martina Heiduezek

HarperCollins Publishing

ABC Books

ISBN: 9780733340864

RRP$17.99

Ages 4+

 

Description:

An inclusive picture book for grandparents everywhere.

 

In every country around the world are grandpas short and tall.

 

Though they go by different names, we love them one and all.

 

From brilliant new talents Ashleigh Barton and Martina Heiduczek, comes a charming and heart-warming book that celebrates the many different ways we say grandpa.

 

What Do You Call Your Grandpa? is a love letter to grandfathers and families from every corner of the globe.

 

My View:

A celebration of all names for grandpa – with images of traditional elements of the culture being explored in each page, this book is a delight to read with your pre-schooler.  Caregivers, pre-schoolers and teachers alike will find this a useful resource when discussing inclusivity in the global community of contemporary Australia. And a great gift idea for the upcoming (grand) fathers’ days 😊

 

 

 

Review: Pink! – Margaret Wild and Judith Rossell

Pink!

Margaret Wild and Judith Rossell

HarperCollins Children’s Books

ISBN: 9781460757499

RRP$24.99

Ages 2-5 years

 

Description:

Pink was born to stand out Pink is a small dinosaur who stands out from the crowd. Hide-and-seek is her favourite game, but her colour means she’s always the first one to be found. She doesn’t want to be pink anymore … until her difference helps her friends find their way home again.

 

An adorable new picture book about accepting yourself and finding your strengths, from award-winning author Margaret Wild and award-winning illustrator Judith Rossell.

 

My View:

A delightful narrative about difference, acceptance and being you.

 

And who doesn’t love dinosaur stories? This is sure to be a hit with all pre-schoolers and their care givers alike; beautifully illustrated, with a narrative that has lot of discussion to offer re acceptance of who we are, of our strengths, of being different or simply a story about a dinosaur helping her friends, you chose how you navigate this narrative with your pre-schooler.

 

 

Review: There’s a Zoo In my Poo – Professor Felice Jacka and Rob Craw

There’s a Zoo In my Poo

Professor Felice Jacka and Rob Craw,  

Macmillan Australia

ISBN: 9781760783044

 

Description:

 

There’s a Zoo in your Poo!

It needs a Zookeeper

And that Keeper is YOU!

 

Did you know that trillions of tiny bugs live in and on all of us? And there’s a Zoo of bugs in our poo. But which are the good bugs and which are the bad? What should we eat to keep our good bugs happy and our body strong?

 

Get to the guts of what you need to know about you and your poo.

 

Professor Felice Jacka is a world expert in the field of Nutritional Psychiatry and gut health. Teacher and musician Rob Craw is a world expert at drawing bugs!

 

They want kids to know all about the amazing stuff going on in their bodies.

 

Get ready for a journey inside the most exciting of places … YOU!

 

 

My View:

Brilliant!

 

This book is the new #1 on my 4-year-old grandson’s reading list.  We have read over and over and over. He even took it in the car with him, to read on a short holiday.  He loves this book and I must say I agree with his view. It is brilliant! It is the perfect book to start a dialogue with your pre-schooler about gut health, healthy food choices, digestion etc.

 

This book is packed with easily transferable knowledge – one page reads “factorially” – with information that a parent/guardian or teacher will find useful, the opposite page is filled with images and fun facts that are attention grabbing and keep your pre schooler entertained. And the best page of all? The poo chart 😊  ( https://continence.org.au/bristol-stool-chart )  What is it with pre-schoolers and poo? Yes my grandson joyfully shares with us the number on the chart that matches his poo. Too much information you may ask? Well, a little gross but not really; he is at a great age to start healthy lifestyle conversations😊 and this book does a fabulous job of starting these conversations.

 

This book is a must have resource for every school and library.

 

 

Review: No Never! : Libby Hathorn & Lisa Hathorn-Jarman Illustrated by Mel Pearce

No Never! A Cautionary Tale

Libby Hathorn & Lisa Hathorn- Jarman

Illustrated by Mel Pearce

Hachette Australia

Lothian Children’s Books

ISBN: 9780734418906

 

Description:

A cautionary tale about a little girl who drives her parents up the wall when she starts answering ‘No! Never!’ to all their requests – and what happens when the tables are turned on her.

 

There was a child,

The sweetest ever,

Until she learned these words:

‘NO! NEVER!’

 

Georgie is a sweet little girl who always makes her parents happy… until she discovers one powerful phrase: No! Never!

 

It suddenly becomes her answer to every request, from tidying up her toys to going to bed. Her parents are at their wits end, but what happens when they decide to try saying No! Never! themselves?

 

A lovely, lively look at the Terrible Twos (or Threes, or Fours, or Fives…) from mother-daughter team Libby Hathorn and Lisa Hathorn-Jarman, with debut illustrator Mel Pearce. Perfect for any parent dealing with tantrums, defiant behaviour or communication issues.

 

 

My View:

This is a delightful tale with a wonderful moral/lesson in the story that all carers, parents and young children can appreciate. With simple almost gleeful imagery and wonderful rhyming prose, this book is sure to be a hit.

 

Highly recommend for pre-schoolers, pre-school libraries and all who play with, care for and help little minds grow.

 

 

 

Review: The Mummy Animal Book – Jennifer Cossins

The Mummy Animal Book

Jennifer Cossins

Hachette Australia

ISBN:  9780734419897

RRP $9.99

 

Description:

An adorable and informative picture book about mummy animals and their babies from the author of THE BABY ANIMAL BOOK and 101 COLLECTIVE NOUNS.

 

Did you know that a mother peacock is called a peahen and a baby peacock is called a peachick?

 

THE MUMMY ANIMAL BOOK is an adorable and informative picture book about mummy animals and their babies that is perfect for Mother’s Day, from the author of the CBCA Notable THE BABY ANIMAL BOOK.

 

 

My View:

This is another delightful book from one of my favourite children’s authors and illustrators.  Jennifer Cossins once again delivers a children book that is engaging, beautifully illustrated and educational. You are sure to enjoy the time you sit with your pre schooler sharing this beautiful book.

PS Anyone looking for a gift for the many kindy parties your child will be attending, this book is perfect. Be assured that you will be giving a gift of learning and joy; encouraging reading is such valuable habit to inspire and it is a bargain too.

 

 

 

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Guest Review: The Year the Maps Changed – Danielle Binks

 

The Year the Maps Changed

Danielle Binks

Hachette Children’s Books

ISBN: 9780734419712

 

Description:

‘I was eleven when everything started and twelve by the end. But that’s another way maps lie, because it felt like the distance travelled was a whole lot further than that.’

Sorrento, Victoria – 1999

Fred’s family is a mess. Fred’s mother died when she was six and she’s been raised by her Pop and adoptive father, Luca, ever since. But now Pop is at the Rye Rehabilitation Centre recovering from a fall; Luca’s girlfriend, Anika, has moved in; and Fred’s just found out that Anika and Luca are having a baby of their own. More and more it feels like a land-grab for family and Fred is the one being left off the map.

But even as the world feels like it’s spinning out of control, a crisis from the other side of it comes crashing in. When 400 Kosovar-Albanian refugees arrive in the middle of the night to be housed at one of Australia’s ‘safe havens’ on an isolated headland not far from Sorrento, their fate becomes intertwined with the lives of Fred and her family, as she navigates one extraordinary year that will change them all.

A middle-grade coming-of-age story about the bonds of family and the power of compassion for fans of The Bone Sparrow, Wolf Hollow and The Thing About Jellyfish.

 

 

Brenda’s Review:

Winifred was eleven and living with her adoptive father Luca – a policeman – and until recently her Pop. But then Luca’s girlfriend Anika and her son Sam moved in and suddenly Winifred (who was called Fred, Freddo and Winnie) felt her house was crowded. She’d lost her mother Maria when she was six and still missed her terribly and didn’t want Sam or Anika in her house. Pop was at a Rehabilitation Centre recovering from the fall he’d had, and Winifred visited him every weekend, and Wednesdays after school.

Winifred had a few friends at school and was close to Jed who lived next door. Aiden was another friend and soon Sam joined the group. Their teacher, Mr Khouri taught geography and maps which Winifred was fascinated by, and he always told them “Not all those who wander are lost” which stuck in Winifred’s mind. But more was to take their interest when they found out 400 refugees were to be arriving and housed in a “safe haven” nearby. As events changed around them, Winifred felt cut adrift. But she felt inside that she had a purpose and when a particular person made an impact on her life, she went with what she felt was right. What would be the result of the year that changed everything for Winifred?

The Year the Maps Changed by Aussie author Danielle Binks is set in the beautiful Mornington Peninsula in Victoria, and gives us a look at one turbulent year in a young girl’s life in which things change, family merges, sadness and tragedy occurs, and she begins to mature. A story of family, love, compassion and right from wrong, The Year the Maps Changed is a powerful middle grade novel which I thoroughly enjoyed. Highly recommended. 5 stars

 

With thanks to Hachette Children’s Books AU for my ARC to read in exchange for an honest review.

Review: Dugong Magic – Deborah Kelly, Illustrated by Lisa Stewart

Dugong Magic
Deborah Kelly
Illustrated by Lisa Stewart
Lothian Children’s Books
Hachette Children’s Books
ISBN: 9780734419965
Paperback $15.99

Description:
A beautifully illustrated, lyrical and informative story about dugongs, one of our most unique endangered animals. Ideal for anyone with an interest in marine life and the environment, and an excellent teaching resource.
There are not many dugongs left in the world now. But what if humans freed the sea from nets? What if we cleared it of rubbish so that seagrass could flourish again and dugongs could feed?
A beautiful and thought-provoking picture book about dugongs – the mysterious creatures who were once mistaken for mermaids. Deborah’s Kelly’s beautiful, lyrical writing brings these animals to life, and highlights the dangers they face, inspiring young readers to care for and protect our natural world. Lisa Stewart’s gorgeous illustrations capture the beauty of these gentle and endangered creatures.

My View:
This is a very sensitively written book that provides gorgeous images with a message about ecology, the environment and optimism.

Read and learn about the dugong’s calf’s family close relationship, its habitat, it quests for sweet waters, pollution free, and an ocean that all can utilise.

For adults, teachers and carer’s there is a handy page of “Dugong Facts” to assist you answering those never ending “why” questions 😊, eg where they live, what does the name mean, how do they communicate? etc

A great teaching resource and an environmental call for action.

Review: What A Lot of Nonsense – Sheena Knowles & Jonathan Bentley

What a Lot of Nonsense
Sheena Knowles & Jonathan Bentley
HarperCollins Australia
ISBN: 9781460756140

Description:
From the author of the internationally bestselling EDWARD and EDWINA THE EMU, comes a book that presents readers with a puzzle – to find the anagrams hidden on every page.

Dear reader, please take time to note
Two ways to read this book I wrote.
The first way is for everyone,
Just read the book, enjoy the fun.
The second way will challenge those
Who like to look beyond the prose.
Who’d like to ACT just like a ‘cat’
(And that’s an anagram, in fact).

Join in the fun with a host of quirky animals, and find out why a bear doesn’t want to be bare, a seal goes to a sale, and a dingo is doing a dance.
Sheena Knowles, author of internationally bestselling Edward the Emu and Edwina the Emu, has teamed up with renowned illustrator Jonathan Bentley to create a joyous book that fires up the imagination and revels in the joy of words.’

My View:
With lovely rhyming prose and colourful images this is a book that will delight your pre-schooler as they sit alongside you as you share this read.

Our grandson is turning four in April – he laughed and giggled as I read out loud to him. Such a joyful sound. I love encouraging him to read and enjoy words ( and pictures), this book is a perfect treat for him.

Review: Beautiful Eggs – Alice Lindstrom

 

Beautiful Eggs
Illustrated by Alice Lindstrom
Scribble
ISBN: 9781925849783
RRP $16.99

Description:
Eggs decorated with leaves, lace, or even string.

Wrap them up in a cloth and dip them into colourful dye.

Unwrap for a beautiful surprise.

Decorated eggs are found all over the world in many different countries. They are a wonderful celebration of family, culture, and tradition.

Complete with a stencil incorporated into the design, this book will encourage children to create their own beautiful eggs.

A large-format board book for Easter that celebrates traditions of egg-decorating from around the world with exquisite cut-paper illustrations.

My View:
This book is a great resource for teachers, parents and care givers and is much better treat for your pre-schooler than chocolates at Easter 😊. This board book is easy for little hands to hold and use, the bright, colourful designs are mesmerising… and the narrative is a simple and engaging way to introduce your little ones to the tradition of egg decorating – the book provides examples from around the world.

And what I love best (after the fact this is a perfect Easter gift) is the template at the back that allows your child to draw their own eggs and colour, paint, stamp, glue and decorate to their hearts content. Within minutes of showing this to my grandson we were drawing eggs and gathering up crayons to start decorating. A book that entertains and encourages creativity – what a great find! Published today – check it out.