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Archive for the ‘Humorous Stories’ Category

Expelled by James Patterson & Emily Raymond.

October 23, 2017 Comments off

expelledExpelled by James Patterson & Emily Raymond. Pub. Penguin Random House, Imprint Young Arrow, 2017

This novel for teens had me laughing from start to finish. It is clever, it is witty and the dialogue between characters is buzzing. If you are a reluctant reader get your eyeballs into this novel, I guarantee you won’t put it down.

The brief plot is – someone has put a revealing photograph using the IP address of 16 year old Theo’s Twitter account. For this he is expelled from school along with those that featured in the photograph. He is innocent.He is aggrieved and wants justice and has to convince the others that they must pursue the truth. They decide to do it by making a film about the incident and the outcome is superb.

Theo is unhappy and doesn’t want to be known as the kid with the dead father who was expelled. He has a crush on Sasha in a way that is a cross between like and lust.

Sasha is an intelligent and aloof beauty. When she says anything the boys sit up and notice. When the movie is suggested by Theo the boys take it seriously because of Sasha who herself has been expelled for alleged theft. There is also some thought that she is the girl with the impressive boobs in the photo on Theo’s Twitter page.

Jude is Theo’s best friend and is assumed to be in the photograph too. He describes himself as a 16 year old bisexual virgin in a Hello Kitty T shirt and plans to paint himself to success and happiness with his art.

Parker is a 200 pound football player with the intelligence and language skills of an ox, who was also a subject on the photograph. He was swigging from a whisky bottle with a hand on the afore mentioned boobs.

Felix is the film maker moved by the fact that the film Tangerine was  shot on iPhone 5’s. Can he do it with this story and get to Sundance film festival?

Great cover. You see this cover and you want to pick the book up. It’s a rivetting story get into it.

 

 

 

Birthday Boy. What if it was every Day? by Davis Baddiel.Illus. Jim Field

October 9, 2017 Comments off

birthday boyBirthday Boy. What if it was every Day? by Davis Baddiel. Illus. Jim Field. Pub. HarperCollins, 2017.

It is often said that if you see a shooting star you should make a wish and it will come true and wouldn’t it be great if it was your birthday every day. Combine these two ideas and you have an outline of the plot of this book.

This all happens to Sam Green and while he enjoys it for a while he soon learns that it is not all beer and skittles. It is all a bit selfish and imposes hardship on family and friends especially his younger sister Ruby who is the feel good character in this book.

Then Sam decides he doesn’t want his birthday every day and his Grandpa Sam who suffers from dementia goes missing. Is there a link? A gripping adventure follows as Sam and Ruby try to reverse the wish and find grandpa.

Very much written in the style of David Walliams and why not it is a winning formula.

Jim Field’s illustrations play a starring role in this novel but for me the best parts involved the four grandparents who squabbled and battled throughout.

This book will appeal to reluctant readers with great sense of humour and imagination and of primary and intermediate age. Get it it is a laugh.

Charlie and his amazing tales by Dawn McMillan, illus. Ross Kinnaird

October 6, 2017 Comments off

CharlieCharlie and his amazing tales by Dawn McMillan, illus. Ross Kinnaird. Pub. Oratia Books, 2017.

Charlie is a dog in need of a new owner and has to sell himself. A young impressionable boy passes by sees the $10.00 sale price and is interested. Charlie sees his chance and rips off a series of amazing stories that only a shaggy dog could tell.

Charlie talks of being a spy, of saving people from flood and fire, of surviving hungry crocodiles and more. He is especially keen to pass himself off as toilet trained, neat and tidy, and having a good imagination.

The boy is sold but is it all true? Check out the ending to see if the boy parts with his $10.00.

Excellent fun from these two experienced writers and illustrators. The rhyming text is not forced and makes for easy reading aloud and the illustrations boost Charlie’s tall tales.. The dog sitting on the loo will bring a few laughs.

A fun publication for the school library and for parents to read to their children at home.

Categories: Humorous Stories Tags: ,

Annual 2. A New Zealand Miscellany edited by Kate De Goldi & Susan Paris.

September 18, 2017 Comments off

annual 2Annual 2. A New Zealand Miscellany edited by Kate De Goldi & Susan Paris. Imprint Annual Ink. Distributed, Potton & Burton, 2017.

Reading this book made me very happy. I smiled all the way through it and in parts laughed out loud. What’s more it is totally New Zealand and although aimed at the 9-13 year olds, it really is for everybody.

It is loosely based on the annual type compilations that appeared through the 50’s and 60’s but it is better than that, there is a bit of depth about the subject matter and the means of delivery.

It has stories, essays, interviews, poems, comics, a song by Bic Runga, a recipe, a game and art works. Wait there is more, it is full of ideas for any young writer to get inspiration from and it is totally brilliant.

To give you an example one article looks at a community notice board that you will find in a supermarket or library. Folk offering services or requesting help. It then creates communication between the different players whether by design or accident, via email or texting by cell phone. The results are hilarious.

The article that really tickled me was titled Never say Goodbye: The Art of taxidermy. Tongue is firmly placed in the cheek.

Just loved it. You will too. Look at the part story of an old NZ classic, Barry Faville’s The Keeper – just superb.

 

Watch Out for the Weka by Ned Barraud.

September 14, 2017 Comments off

watch wekaWatch Out for the Weka by Ned Barraud. Pub. Potton & Burton, 2017.

A delightful picture book about one of New Zealand’s other native birds that have personality and brighten up our lives. The weka which is very much like a brown bush chicken.

My family and I used to camp at Totaranui in the Able Tasman National Park in the 80’s and 90’s. At first we saw many of them then less and less until hardly ever. It was a shame. they were a cheeky bird that would go into your tent an forage.

The weka in this book has a scurrilous look and likes shiny things. The hut ranger gets embarrassed in his altogether when chasing a weka that has nicked his watch. But the weka hasn’t finished yet. read it and see what happens.

Superb digital illustrations of the Able Tasman particularly Awaroa Inlet and the beach bought by ordinary New Zealanders. The weka is classic.

Emily, the Dreadfuls, and the Dead Skin Gang by Bill Nagelkerke.

September 6, 2017 Comments off

emily dreadfulEmily, the Dreadfuls, and the Dead Skin Gang by Bill Nagelkerke. Pub. 2017.

This is a crafty story and ‘Dreadful” in the nicest possible way. It is for primary school readers and it is concerned with burglars, gangs, dead skin and friendship.

Emily is learning to write with her uncle Raymond who is staying until his new house is finished. The crafty bit comes as Emily learns that writers can draw their ideas and inspiration from people and events that are around them.

When burglars make an impact around Emily’s neighbourhood by dumping dust down the chimney and stealing during the chaos, Emily gets an idea for a story. When school friendships get strained over the formation of two gangs, Emily writes a story concurrent with the plot, but you will have to read the book to find out what happens.

The two stories merge with each other and there is lots of dead skin and Dreadful happenings.

Available from online suppliers after 17 September 2017

Good Night, Sleep Tight by Kristina Andres. Translated by Sally-Ann Spencer.

August 29, 2017 Comments off

good nightGood Night, Sleep Tight by Kristina Andres. Translated by Sally-Ann Spencer. Pub. Gecko Press, 2017.

Fox and rabbit share a house together and even sleep in the same bed but they have trouble getting to sleep and are a bit obsessed with saying good night.

These are eleven and a half read-a-loud story for primary aged students in which rabbit, fox and friends analyse their sleeping habits which at times is laugh out loud funny.

It is no use counting sheep as it makes fox’s whiskers twinge, although elephant finds it quite soothing. With elephant they decide to sleep like bats in the pear tree, the tree is not amused.

There are some interesting characters beside fox, rabbit and elephant namely Granny Wolf with the gold tooth that shines in the dark, the wolf with the leather jacket and of course Lottie the sheepdog.

The illustrations are superb creating an idyllic world and characters that are unique. I loved elephant’s glasses and Lottie’s deer stalker hat.

A classy piece of work in picture book sized publication.