The End and Other Beginnings. Stories from the future by Veronica Roth.

October 22, 2019 Comments off

end beginningsThe End and Other Beginnings. Stories from the future by Veronica Roth. Pub. HarperCollins, 2019.

There are 6 stories in this collection, all are set in the future, all are about survival in which the characters come to a crisis or turning point in their lives akin to death, then have a renewed assurance and confidence about continuing their lives.

In all stories which are set on an Earth like setting there are alien cultures living in with the native population and the characters have a skill or a talent that can help them in their plight.

They are not simple stories. All have strong development of plot and character from which further stories can be made from the reader thus they are very useful at encouraging writing.

INERTIA has a dying teenage boy linking mentally by medical science with a girl with whom he had a past relationship. They share memories of the earlier relationship of which the other was not fully aware as a way of saying goodbye before death. With a twist.

THE SPINNERS. Has a bounty hunter chasing the killer of her mother. The killer is an alien symbiotic leech that attaches itself to the neck of a human and takes over their mind and body. Stunning ending with a twist.

HEARKEN. A girl with a strong musical talent is to become a Hearker who is able to read the life and death songs of humans based on String Theory. Everybody is living and dying at the same time. A lovely twist to this story too.

VIM AND VIGOR. Is a story of girls who are mad about super heroes. read it to find out what happens.

ARMOURED ONES. is a story of a boy who is considered week by his peers and choses to take on an Armoured beast that is feared by all in order to prove his worth.

THE TRANSFORMATIONIST. looks at religious belief and refusal to defend oneself in an alien culture.

Check these superior stories out, the human problems are so real yet so different. Senior secondary and young adult in appeal.

 

 

 

TOHORA The southern Right Whale by Ned Barraud

October 20, 2019 Comments off

TohoraTOHORA The southern Right Whale by Ned Barraud. Pub. Potton & Burton.

Ned Barraud is one of the best illustrators in NZ especially of wildlife and in this excellent publication he gives the reader a real sense of affection for the whale that got it’s name because it was the right whale to hunt.

From the 1840’s the southern right whale was hunted to near extinction with nearly 40, 000 of them being slaughtered, cooked for their whale oil and their baleen used for the corsets of European women.

This picture book sized work is a hopeful look at the survival of the right whale prompted no doubt by the visitation and frolicking of a right whale in Wellington Harbour a couple of years back. An area that it once thrived.

Illustrations of the Right whale are superb.

Excellent information in simple yet powerful text. Better than anything you can get on the Net. For primary and intermediate levels.

 

 

A Child of Books by Oliver Jeffers & Sam Winston.

October 19, 2019 Comments off

child of booksA Child of Books by Oliver Jeffers & Sam Winston. Pub. Walker Books, 2019.

“The universe is made up of stories, not atoms”. This is a foreword to this wonderful picture book about reading and imagination.

A young girl sits on a raft and declares “I am a child of Books. I come from a World of stories”. She floats on a sea of words describing many great works of fiction, to a young boy’s house and together they travel over mountains of make-believe and lose themselves in forests of fairy tales and other imaginations  to a house where anyone can come.

The illustrations are often made with words and enhance the magical world that reading can invoke.

Sophisticated picture book but easy to understand for primary, intermediate and secondary readers. In fact for everybody.

A superb piece of work.

Categories: Picture book Tags: ,

Tell Me. What children really want to know about bodies, sex and emotions by Katharina von der Gathen, illus. Anke Kuhl.

October 17, 2019 Comments off

tellTell Me. What children really want to know about bodies, sex and emotions by Katharina von der Gathen, illus. Anke Kuhl. Pub. Gecko press, 2019.

All families should have a book like this in the home if they have young children. Recommended as suitable for children 8 and up, it answers questions asked anonymously by children involved in classes with the author who is an experienced sex educationalist.

The answers are direct and heart warming and they are illustrated in a way to avoid embarrassment and to smile over. Gee I wish I knew all of this when I was young.

It covers more than the sex act and the sex organs although it does answer the question that males are obsessed with – “how long is a penis?”. It also answers the following What makes sex fun? What is homosexual? Do babies get made every time you have sex? What is porn? What is sexual harassment? What happens if you’re pregnant and you don’t want to have a baby? and the birth process and changes at puberty.

I liked it and thought it was fun and avoids embarrassment. It is easy for a care giver or parent to open discussion with their children using this book which incidentally opens from south to North. Anke Kuhl’s illustrations are a star.

Categories: Non Fiction Tags:

Where is my Underwear by Justin Kipp.

October 16, 2019 Comments off

underwearWhere is my Underwear by Justin Kipp. Pub. 2019.

This is a simple story of a boy(who else) who has lost his last pair of underpants or underwear as they say in USA. They are under something but under where?

He asks his mum if she has seen them and she says they were under his bed but they are not under there and there is a spider under the dresser. So where are his underwear?

You have guessed it. This is a play on words about the only boy in the world who has lost his underwear. Not.

It is funny, a good read aloud and is well illustrated in bold colours. I like the hair and the eyebrows. You will like it to.

For primary and pre schoolers and maybe intermediate students especially boys(and mothers).

For copies check the author and Amazon.

Madame Badobedah by Sophie Dahl.

October 15, 2019 Comments off

badobedayMadame Badobedah by Sophie Dahl. Pub. Walker Books, 2019.

If I was an old woman I would like to be like Madame Badobedah. Mysterious, well kept, says “darlink” and keeps to herself.

She arrives at the Mermaid Hotel with two dogs, two cats, a tortoise and 23 bags and moves into room 32. Mabel is a resident of Mermaid Hotel and she keeps an eye on things and she decides Madame Badobedah is suspicious.

Mabel is a young girl with imagination and she treats every room in the Mermaid Hotel as a brother or a sister.  She imagines fantastical exploits with Madame and they become good friends. Read it and see what happens.

Great illustrations portray Madame , the Mermaid Hotel and an English seaside resort . Sophie Dahl’s text  tells a whimsical story with intrigue and mystery.

For primary and intermediate readers but adults will love this as well.

Avis and the Promise of Dragons by Heather McQuillan.

October 14, 2019 Comments off

avisAvis and the Promise of Dragons by Heather McQuillan. Pub. AHOY, imprint Cuba Press, 2019.

How do you weave an ex All Black star, a manipulative dragon, a kind hearted little girl with a slovenly father and brother, a mother who has left home, a bully, an endangered species smuggler and chocolate bars into a novel?

Check out this easy to read tale and find out. Of course it is an outrageous fantasy and tall story, but it is good fun and an easy read for primary and intermediate students.

Avis is the central character and she is a very likeable. Her father is in a slump because his wife and Avls’s mother has run off with an ex All Black. Bruno the 14 year old brother is in a grump as well. Avis does everything around the house.

Then Avis gets a job minding an eccentric scientists house while she attends to a screeching peacock, and discovers a giant lizard that loves chocolate which makes it shed it’s skin and grow quickly. Not only that it becomes a dragon and is able to manipulate Avis through thought control.

I can tell you no more but it is fun.