Happy New Year

On reflection 2021 has been a time of family, of joy, of creating (art), of love, of new beginnings ( new grandchild arriving April 2022) of rescue dog love (Maggie) of art and more art ( did I mention art?) of reading… so many good books and so many new friends…

Happy New Year and thanks for following this journey with me.

The last painting of 2021 and the start of the first for 2022

Art with grandson
Maggie Dog

Cheers🎉🎉🍾🍾🍾 Happy New Year

Review: The Bumper Treehouse of Fun Book – Andy Griffiths, Jill Griffiths, Terry Denton

The Bumper Treehouse of Fun

Andy Griffiths, Jill Griffiths & Terry Denton

Pan Australia

ISBN:9781760988890

RRP $19.99

Description:

The Bumper Treehouse Fun Book is packed with over 300 pages of treehouse-inspired fun!

With the FUNNEST activities from the Treehouse Fun Books and a whole heap of brand new ones, there are pictures to draw, stories to write, codes to crack, sudokus to solve, colour-ins, dot-to-dots, mazes, crosswords, word searches, spot-the-differences and some activities that we don’t even have a name for!

So, what are you waiting for?

Grab a pen, pencil, crayon or spooncil and come on in!

My View:

The perfect gift for a child you know – word searches, colouring in, spot the differences, decode the message, dot to dots – this makes a great gift to take on holidays or for school holiday entertainment – its bound to keep any child happily engaged for hours.

Review: Game On – Tempting Twenty-Eight – Janet Evanovich

Game On

Janet Evanovich

Simon & Schuster

ISBN: 9781398510135

Description:

Stephanie Plum returns to hunt down a master cyber-criminal operating out of Trenton in the 28th book in the wildly popular series by #1 New York Times bestselling author Janet Evanovich.

When Stephanie Plum is woken up in the middle of the night by the sound of footsteps in her apartment, she wishes she didn’t keep her gun in the cookie jar in her kitchen. And when she finds out the intruder is fellow apprehension agent Diesel, six feet of hard muscle and bad attitude whom she hasn’t seen in more than two years, she still thinks the gun might come in handy.

Turns out Diesel and Stephanie are on the trail of the same fugitive: Oswald Wednesday, an international computer hacker as brilliant as he is ruthless. Stephanie may not be the most technologically savvy sleuth, but she more than makes up for that with her dogged determination, her understanding of human nature, and her willingness to do just about anything to bring a fugitive to justice. Unsure if Diesel is her partner or her competition in this case, she’ll need to watch her back every step of the way as she sets the stage to draw Wednesday out from behind his computer and into the real world.

My View:

Very possibly the best book in this wacky and entertaining series! This is escapism at it very best – I love this series and look forward to the new Recovery Agent series that will be published early next year – this one looks like my type of read (at the end of Game on is a sneak peek of the first chapter in the new series).

Game on is a fabulous, light, entertaining, romantic ( this is how I like to read romance 🙂 🙂 🙂 ) slapstick read. Perfect to end this tumultuous year on.

New Releases 15 Sept 2021

I am busily engaged in Margaret River Open Studios as some of you will be aware, the TBR continues to grow so I thought I would do a quick shout out to the new releases that are sitting on the top of my TBR. I have started the new book from Sandie Docker “The Wattle Island Book Club” (Penguin Random House)- and am loving it.

” A Journalist Infiltrate the Police: Cop” by Valentin Gendrot (Scribe) looks intriguing,

“The Banksia House Breakout” (Ventura Press) from debut author James Roxburgh sounds like a fun and enlightening.

“Brainwaves” from Ziggy Alberts (Commonfolk Publishing) – poetry and prose that you can carry in your bag or pop in your pocket and read when you have a few minutes – inspirational prose.

brainwaves
is a polite request
an invitation into
a vulnerable relationship
between the writer
and the reader
it is an ode
to word of mouth
to paper pages
to hard copies
handed to strangers
shared with lovers
kept with family
to taking chances on books
without knowing
the entirety of its contents first
to do and practice just that
of which we do so little of today
with books and relationships alike.
brainwaves
was not made for the internet
it was made for you

I hope you find something on my TBR that might interest you.

Review: Pea + Nut Go For Gold – Matt Stanton

Pea + Nut Go For Gold

Matt Stanton

ABC Books

Harper Collins Australia

ISBN: 9780733340680

RRP $17.99

 

Description:

Meet Pea and Nut: best friends and also … best rivals!

 

When a chilled-out panda and a hyperactive flamingo go head to head, there can be only one winner.

 

Pea the panda relaxes by the pool. Nut the flamingo doesn’t do relaxing. It’s time for a race, and this time Nut is going for gold!

 

The second book in the hilarious bestselling series featuring two adorable oddballs by bestselling author Matt Stanton.

 

 

PRAISE FOR MATT STANTON’S BOOKS

 

‘humour is injected into every page’ – Children’s Book Council of Australia’s Reading Time

 

‘Witty, silly, and interactive … A rollicking read for children and adults alike’ – Kirkus Reviews

 

 

My View:

What more can I add than this book made my 4 year old grandson laugh out loud and that is a sound I never grow tired of hearing.

With bright colourful images and humour on every page plenty of material here to enjoy or to start conversations.

 

Fun, colurful and delightful.

 

 

Review: The Ultimate Animal Counting Book – Jennifer Cossins

The Ultimate Animal Counting Book

The Ultimate Animal Counting Book

Jennifer Cossins

Hachette Australia

Lothian Children’s Books

ISBN: 9780734418852

RRP $29.99

 

Description:

Join CBCA Award-winning author/illustrator Jennifer Cossins (as praised on The Ellen Show) on an expedition through the animal kingdom in the most amazing animal counting book ever – count one to 100 and collect fascinating animal facts along the way.

 

Can you count one blue whale? Probably.

How about 16 lions? Or 44 penguins? Or 100 fairy flies?

 

Join CBCA Award-winner Jennifer Cossins on an expedition through the animal kingdom, counting one to 100 and collecting fascinating animal facts along the way. Discover the colour of a zebra’s skin under its stripes, how a tapir uses its nose as a snorkel when it swims, and that cranes are famous for their dancing!

 

Beautifully illustrated with full-colour pictures of animals great and small, from all over the world – from the familiar wombat and sea turtle to the unusual gerenuk and caracal – THE ULTIMATE ANIMAL COUNTING BOOK is an utter delight.

 

 

My View:

Jennifer Cossins’ animal kingdom books never fail to disappoint; educational, fun, beautifully illustrated with stunning details, this series of children’s books have encouraged and assisted my grandson to learn to count (he can now count to 100 thanks to this latest book), he also has a great knowledge of Australian and other animals, and most importantly the books have fostered a love of reading and being read to.

 

We look forward to the next delightful book in this series.

 

PS – love all the quirky facts that are scattered throughout this book.

 

More Art- Transformation

Look closely – I dabbled with some fluro colours – loved them wet but not so much when they dried – they dulled. Today I revamped the painting ( that’s what I like about using acrylics – you can paint over if you are not happy with the outcome) – I added a top coat, splattered then used a method called sgraffito to reveal some of the original colours. I love it.

What do you see here? An underwater scene? Flowers? Something under the microscope – bacteria, amoeba? What does your imagination see?

An Insiders Perspective…Book Publishing: (Definitely) The Best Dogs of All Time

The Best Dogs Of all Time

(Definitely the Best Dogs of All Time

Jadan Carroll

Illustrations by Molly Dyson

Scribe Publications

ISBN:  9781925713510

Jadan Explains:

It happened in an all staff meeting in February this year. We were discussing our end of year list when Henry, our publisher, mentioned that he was looking for light-hearted gift books to publish in November for Christmas, and finished by saying ‘So if anyone has any ideas…’

He may have meant that comment to be taken rhetorically, but I took it quite literally.

Dogs are the best. There are, and have been, so many great dogs in this world. I reeled off a list of my favourite dogs from throughout history and suggested that we publish a humorous illustrated gift book about the best dogs of all time and call it (Definitely) The Best Dogs of All Time. I was happy enough just to make the rest of the office laugh, but everyone seemed to be very on board with the idea. I took a couple of nights to write up a proposal and it was jointly commissioned by our Senior Commissioning editor Marika Webb-Pullman and our Art Director Miriam Rosenbloom the following week.

The whole thing was turned around very quickly; I researched and wrote it in about three months at night or on weekends. Miriam Rosenbloom, our art director, suggested approaching Molly Dyson to illustrate it, I already knew Molly and was a huge fan of her work so I was quite thrilled by that happy coincidence and even more so when she said yes. She did such an amazing job working to a very tight schedule and the finished book looks amazing. She has such a unique style, and is fast becoming a highly in-demand designer and illustrator in the music and arts scenes in both Australia and Germany, so I felt very lucky to have her involved.

Our production manager Mick Pilkington described it as ‘shot-gun publishing’ and this seems like an apt description. It was such a fun project to work on and I’m very proud of it.

 

My View:

This is a fun and interesting read, the perfect gift for all dog lovers- however as the English Staffordshire Terrier is not represented on these pages – I have rectified that omission with this image of Bob the Dog – our furbaby and best friend.

Bob the Dog