Lizzy’s Dragon, book review

Lizzys-Dragon

Title: Lizzy’s Dragon
by: Melissa Gijsbers
illustrated by: Kylie Leane
Publisher: Stone Table Books

When she finds an odd looking egg in the forest behind her house she decides to hide it in her bedroom in the hope that it will hatch into a lizard. What she gets is ‘Bubbles’, the oddest, fastest growing lizard she has ever seen. It doesn’t take long for her annoying little brother to discover her secret pet. It also doesn’t take long for Bubbles to grow out of her room. Lizzy begins to wonder whether Bubbles is a lizard at all, or something even more amazing. But how will Lizzy keep Bubbles a secret? And what will happen to Bubbles if anyone finds out about him?

Children adore stories about dragons, and ‘Lizzy’s Dragon’ by author, Melissa Gijsbers, is one to add to the must read list.

Lizzy is desperate for a pet, but her mother won’t allow one. One day, while she visits her secret hiding place, away from her maddening brother, Lizzy spots a reflective object on the ground. Afraid that it is a piece of glass that will start a bushfire in the dry weather, Lizzy goes to pick it up, only to discover it looks something like an egg.

Intrigued by the colour and shape, Lizzy hides the egg in a box in her room. It must be kept hidden from her nosy brother, who manages to tell on her for everything she does. Readers will enjoy following the journey of the hatching egg to the revealing of the reptile which turns out to be a dragon, but not the type that most people think of first.

When the township is in strife with an out of control fire, Lizzy’s dragon comes into the spotlight. It is here that readers will be delighted by the special gift the dragon has to offer.

Lizzy’s Dragon will keep the reader’s interest in its twenty bite-sized chapters. It will also have the reader wishing for a dragon of their own.

Purchase a copy: http://stonetablebooks.com/product/lizzys-dragon/

Title: Lizzy’s Dragon
by: Melissa Gijsbers
illustrated by: Kylie Leane
Publisher: Stone Table Books
ISBN: 9780648118626
Category: primary aged chapter books
Pages: 74

Reviewed by Julieann Wallace
(Dip T, B. Ed, Author, Illustrator, Tea Ninja, Cadbury Chocolate Annihilator)
www.facebook.com/julieannwallaceonethousandwords/
https://www.julieannwallaceauthor.com/

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Toby’s Tremendously Awesome Blow Off Juice, book review

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Title: Toby’s Tremendously Awesome Blow Off Juice
by: Belinda Meredith
illustrated by: Lauren E Tarrant
Publisher: Mini Rhino Books

Toby is a fairly ordinary nine-year-old, but he has an extraordinary secret—he is the proud new owner of a time-traveling rocket! There’s just one problem. Toby needs some kind of special fuel to get his rocket moving. What’s a boy to do? Toby will have to use some quick thinking and a surprising secret ingredient to make his time machine finally fly, and that’s just the start of the adventure!

How do you describe the sound of a fart with words? According to author, Belinda Meredith, it’s pppplurrbbbhhhhh!!!!!!!! Say it out loud – it’s perfect for that bodily function that causes side splitting laughter the world over.

Toby’s Tremendously Awesome Blow Off Juice is a book that is going places. It all starts with a wobbly tooth and an ‘outside of the box thinking’ nine year old boy named Toby. He is a likeable and lively character who loves adventure. However, his curiosity and quest of making his life colourful, often places him in unusual predicaments, which he then has to find a solution to escape.

Toby is smart. He manages to trade items no longer of use to him for something he really wants. He is also persuasive, with the ability to talk anyone into a deal creating a win-win situation. But by far, he has a much bigger win.

Back to the wobbly tooth that started Toby’s greatest adventure – he manages to trade the tooth (once it has fallen out) for a ‘World’s Greatest Mathematician’ medal, which then is traded for a bmx bike, and traded again for a time traveling rocket.

Every child who reads this book will want to be in Toby’s shoes!

But here is the problem. Toby needs to find the fuel for the rocket. After witnessing the powerful effects of a brussel sprout fart from his brother, Sam, Toby ingeniously puts a call out for brussel sprouts to be sent to his address. And it works a treat.

Toby’s Tremendously Awesome Blow Off Juice has all the ingredients for a winning book with children. Belinda Meredith has included farts, a time travelling rocket, dinosaurs, a school incident that kids will love, and Smelly Nelly’s Super Stinky Pongy & Putrid Stink Bomb – a smell so rotten it is guaranteed to get rid of even your biggest enemies! She has also gone 500 years into the future with the time traveling rocket. The scene she paints with her words is fascinating and will make you think.

I love that this chapter book has pictures here and there. Artist, Lauren E Tarrant, has created fabulous illustrations to complement the story throughout the book that readers will appreciate.

Toby’s Tremendously Awesome Blow Off Juice is an action packed story that primary school aged children will love. Belinda Meredith has woven humour into every page of her story filled with Toby’s hilarious antics.

Children need laughter in our now fast paced world, and this book is guaranteed to make that happen. Expect to hear giggles of laughter when someone reads this book, a very welcome sound in everyone’s lives.

Toby’s Time Travel Adventures: Book 2 will be available soon.

Purchase a copy of Toby’s Tremendously Awesome Blow Off Juice: https://www.belindameredith.com/shop.html

Title: Toby’s Tremendously Awesome Blow Off Juice
by: Belinda Meredith
illustrated by: Lauren E Tarrant
Publisher: Mini Rhino Books
ISBN: 9780648090007
Category: Children’s Chapter Book
Pages: 132

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Reviewed by Julieann Wallace
(Dip T, B. Ed, Author, Illustrator, Tea Ninja, Cadbury Chocolate Annihilator)
www.facebook.com/julieannwallaceonethousandwords/
https://www.julieannwallaceauthor.com/

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The Kids’ Survival Guide “When I was Young…” and other brain-exploding lectures! book review

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Title: The Kids’ Survival Guide “When I was young…” and other brain-exploding lectures!
by: Susan Berran
Publisher: Big Sky Publishing

Ever notice how adults have a gazillion annoying,
brain-exploding lectures that they repeat over and over and over!?

Like when you ask for pocket-money and you hear those five
terrifying little words… “When I was your age…”

Yeah, yeah I know. When you were my age – six hundred and
ninety-eight years ago when you had a dinosaur for a pet!

Well, get ready to strike back. No more boring lectures,
dumb sayings or annoying rules. I’m going to teach you how to
twist them, flip them, turn them and slam them right back!

Sam lives in the city and loves surfing and hanging out with his mates. Everything is totally awesome until along comes Miss Smelly Melly Poop Pants. And to make matters worse – BOOM – the family moves to the countryside, surrounded by dead-boring hills, dead grass, dead trees and dead sheep! Sam is really peeved, until Jared turns up.

As new best mates, Sam and Jared hang out and get creative with a secret dung-flunger and a Super Charged Cow Crapper Attacker which happens to get them into deep trouble. But then Sam finds the book of all books hidden amongst the toilet cleaning products in the cupboard – ‘Boring Useless Lectures, Lessons, Childrens’ Rules And Punishments’ – BULLCRAP for short.

From here, Sam’s story takes a turn explaining rules of the book in five parts –
Part 1 – Boring Lectures that Explode Your Brain and How to Get Out of Them
Part 2 – Awesome Excuses and Uses
Part 3 – Bending the Rules
Part 4 – Dumb Things Parents Say!
Part 5 – Getting Out of Things with Games That You Never Lose

Author, Susan Berran, has written a fast-paced, action-packed story that will have children sniggering at the events, and some will be nodding their heads at the familiarity of words seemingly used by parents, the world over. Susan has listed an instruction for kids on page 6 – But whatever you do – Don’t let an adult get hold of this book, or you and every other kid on the planet are doomed. After reading the book, I understand the need for the instruction, clearly.

Purchase a copy: Big Sky Publishing – The Kids Survival Guide

Title: The Kids’ Survival Guide “When I was young…” and other brain-exploding lectures!
by: Susan Berran
Publisher: Big Sky Publishing
ISBN: 9781925520071
Category: primary school age
Pages: 102

Reviewed by Julieann Wallace
(Dip T, B. Ed, Author, Illustrator, Tea Ninja, Cadbury Chocolate Annihilator)
www.facebook.com/julieannwallaceonethousandwords/
https://www.julieannwallaceauthor.com/

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Tommy Bell Bushranger Boy – Outback Adventure, book review

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Title: Tommy Bell Bushranger Boy – Outback Adventure
by: Jane Smith
Publisher: Big Sky Publishing

Tommy Bell’s safe outback holiday on a farm with Martin and Combo is turned upside down when Martin finds a pair of magic old bushranger’s boots. This time, when Tommy’s cabbage-tree hat sends him back to the past, his friend Martin is right there beside him.
The boys join their new friend, Harry, and his gang on a long cattle-droving expedition across Outback Australia. For once it seems as if a journey to the past might be pure, fun adventure, without any risk of running into bushrangers. But why did Harry lie about his past? And who are the ‘thievin’’ McKenzies? It looks like Tommy and Martin’s ‘Outback Adventure’ might be more dangerous than they expected …

Australian history has never been more interesting. Author, Jane Smith, has captured the life of bushranger, Harry Readford, with accurate observation through the eyes of young characters, Tommy Bell and Martin.

Tommy is invited to the middle of nowhere by his friend, Martin. He finds himself at Bowen Downs Station, right in the middle of Queensland. Tommy becomes concerned when Martin discovers a pair of old boots in a cave. He throws on his cabbage tree hat at the same time that Martin puts on the old boots as he is worried about what will happen to his friend. His suspicions of a time machine are confirmed when they go back to 1870. Tommy is well acquainted with the time machine, as his secret treasured hat is also one, and has already taken him on other history adventures.

Tommy and Martin find themselves part of the famous Harry Readford’s gang on a long cattle droving expedition across outback Australia. When Tommy and Martin discover that the cattle are stolen, they choose to return to the present. But the adventure doesn’t stop there…

Tommy Bell Bushranger Boy – Outback Adventure, is the fourth book in the Tommy Bell, Bushranger Boy collection – a remarkable Australian series where fictional characters watch Australian history unfold before their eyes. I highly recommend it for educational institutions and independent readers.

Purchase a copy:Tommy-Bell-Bushranger- Outback Adventure

Teacher notes: Australian Bushranger Series by Jane Smith Teacher Notes.pdf

Title: Tommy Bell Bushranger Boy – Outback Adventure
by: Jane Smith
Publisher: Big Sky Publishing
ISBN: 978-1-925520-84-2
Category: primary school age children
Pages: 105

julieann

Reviewed by Julieann Wallace
(Dip T, B. Ed, Author, Illustrator, Tea Ninja, Cadbury Chocolate Annihilator)
www.facebook.com/julieannwallaceonethousandwords/
https://www.julieannwallaceauthor.com/

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To the Moon and Back, book review

to the moon and back

Title: To the Moon and Back
by: Dianne Bates
Publisher: Big Sky Publishing

Claire’s mum has been keeping secrets … and now she’s left Claire’s dad and dragged her to live in a run-down shack in the country!

Claire is definitely not happy. Not only has she had to leave her dad, her friends and her perfectly good life in the city, but now she has to deal with her mum’s new boyfriend, ‘Mac’.

With Claire’s mum apparently in love the Mac and their new life, it looks like it’s up to Claire to bring her ‘real’ family back together again.

 

Claire is an eight year old girl whose life is turned up-side-down. Her seemingly happy life changes in an instant, when one night, while Claire’s dad is at work, Claire’s mum leaves the house with her and they never return.

Claire is devastated. She loves her father more than anything.

But her mother keeps insisting that Claire knows why they must leave…

Then to Claire’s dismay, she discovers her mother has a new man in her life. Mac. He is kind and gentle, but Claire has trouble liking him because she just wants her dad back, and he will never take the place of her real father.

Claire’s life takes a turn for the worse when her new family moves to live in a run-down shack in the country at Dr Harry Mountain. There is no electricity and no toilet—just the hole in the ground way down the path through the long grass. And there is no door to the toilet!
Claire’s new life is everything she hates.

But slowly, things change. There’s a dog, a goat, a new school, new friends and new adventures, and the sun starts to shine a little brighter for Claire.

Author, Dianne Bates has woven the topic of domestic violence into her chapter book, To the Moon and Back with gentleness. Lurking in the background of the story are memory flashes of Claire’s father hitting her mum with little detail, but enough to understand that physical violence is happening. Claire would then remember her father being overly apologetic and super nice afterwards lavishing them with flowers and gifts and whatnot.

However, over-riding the issue of violence which is lightly touched upon in the story, is the never ending love Grace has for her daughter. Claire is loved to the moon and back, even when she is bombarded with emotions of guilt and hate and anger and says unkind things to Mac out of disappointed and rejection by her father. The upheaval in Claire’s life is absolutely an emotional rollercoaster ride. Up-ending a life to start another is fraught with uncertainties and apprehension, with anxiety high on the list, not to mention starting a new school and making new friends. Claire’s reaction to her new situation is understandable.

To the Moon and Back is a journey of emotions of an eight year old girl, named Claire. It is also a story of hope, of new beginnings and happiness that returns in leaps and bounds.

Purchase a copy: www.bigskypublishing.com.au/Books/Children/To-the-Moon-and-Back

Title: To the Moon and Back
by: Dianne Bates
Publisher: Big Sky Publishing
ISBN: 9781+25520293
Category: children’s fiction
Pages: 291

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Reviewed by Julieann Wallace
(Dip T, B. Ed, Author, Illustrator, Tea Drinker, Cadbury Chocolate Annihilator)
www.facebook.com/julieannwallaceonethousandwords/
https://www.julieannwallaceauthor.com/

Member of:
Queensland Writers Centre
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Wombat Warriors – a book review

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Wombat Warriors
by: Samantha Wheeler
Publisher: University of Queensland Press

 

 

 

Mouse by name, mouse by nature. Mouse is not prepared for her last-minute stay at Aunt Evie’s. How will she cope at a new school without her parents around?
But before Mouse has even unpacked her suitcase, she makes a new friend – a wombat called Miss Pearl! Suddenly, being in a strange cottage doesn’t seem so bad, especially when she can snuggle up with a wombat.

Mouse soon learns that not everyone in the area loves wombats, including Aunt Evie’s landlord, a sheep farmer who destroys them on sight.

Can Mouse find her voice in time to keep her furry friends safe?

You have a wombat for a pet? I don’t, but Aunt Evie does in Samantha Wheeler’s chapter book, Wombat Warriors.

Action packed from the first words, we follow a girl named Mouse as she comes to live with her Aunt Evie for six weeks, by necessity. The Brisbane city girl is thrown into a South Australian country setting, and has to quickly learn to adapt to the farm way of life, good and bad, happy and heartbreaking, challenging and rewarding.

Wombats are incredibly adorable creatures. And there is no doubt that you will love them even more when you meet Miss Pearl and read about her cheeky antics. Intrigue sets in however, after we meet farm boy, Harry. He has a secret he keeps close to his heart. Meanwhile, the main character, Mouse, who has a small voice but a very big heart, finds that her love for wombats helps her to break through her introverted nature to become a true wombat warrior.

This primary school age chapter book will have you turning the pages as you read the inspiring tale that has wildlife conservation at the heart. You will fall in love with three wombats: Miss Pearl, Willow and Fatticake, and their cute wombat-edness will find an extra-special place in your heart. Readers will be rolling their eyes at Aunt Evie and the way she always gets the end of clichés wrong. Plus there’s the cranky Mrs Campbell, who will keep you guessing about her behaviour until the end.

Author, Samantha Wheeler has cleverly woven wombat facts into her story, as well as adding a section at the back of the book called “WOMBAT-OLOGY”. Wombat Warriors is most definitely an exciting and thoroughly enjoyable book for all children, especially those who are animal lovers with a passion for conservation. I highly recommend this book for independent readers, shared reading, and for use in educational settings.

Purchase a copy of Wombat Warriors at: http://www.uqp.uq.edu.au/book.aspx/1425/Wombat%20Warriors
Connect with Samantha Wheeler at:
www.samanthawheeler.com.au

Title: Wombat Warriors
by: Samantha Wheeler
Publisher: UQP
ISBN: 978 0 7022 5958 6
Category: Children’s & Young Adult
Pages: 192

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Reviewed by Julieann Wallace
(Dip T, B. Ed, Author, Illustrator, Editor, Tea Ninja, Cadbury Chocolate Annihilator)
www.facebook.com/julieannwallaceonethousandwords/
https://www.julieannwallaceauthor.com/

Member of:
QLD Writers Centre
Write Links
Share Your Story

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