Posts Tagged ‘Dreams’

The Uppish Hen & other Poems by Robin Hyde, illus. by Dine. Pub. Cuba Press 2023.

March 9, 2023 Comments off

Robin Hyde was a New Zealand poet and journalist who retired to an island in the Marlborough Sounds to hide the fact that she had given birth to a son out of wedlock in the late 1920’s.

Her son was named Derek or Derry and this book was given to him in a Xmas stocking when he was 4 years old. She hoped it would be published one day and before Derry died aged 90 in 2021 he gave permission for it to be published and so it has been with beautiful illustrations by Dine.

I have a great deal of difficulty reading these days as I await surgery for cataracts but over the past 4 days I have read a little each day because the story and the poems were so compelling. Each poem is on one page with an illustration preceding it and interpreting it. There is allegedly a small mouse in each illustration but with my eyesight I couldn’t find it perhaps you will have better luck but the one sure fact is that the illustrations are superb.

The poems are about dreams and fantasies relevant to childhood. Starlings in the chimney, snails crossing a footpath in the rain, Gretel’s house in the woods, the littlest moon in a nest in the tree and others. The language is descriptive and of an age gone by but very expressive.

Useful for poetry study in primary intermediate and high school. Worth reading for adults too. Picture book sized and short with 14 poems in all.

Thankfully Robin Hyde has had her way. She deserved it.

Categories: Poetry Tags: , ,

The Monkey and the Moonbeam by Jonathon Smith. Pub. Little love imprint Mary Egan Publishing, 2022

July 13, 2022 Comments off

Where is the most comfortable bed you have ever slept in? NicNic asks his mom this as she is telling stories before the children went to sleep.

NicNic in his bed of soft leaves dreams of sleeping on flamingo feathers in Chile, a lions mane in Tanzania, a kangaroo’s pouch in Australia, powdery snow in the Himalayas and other places.

After all his adventures he realises that the best sleep is related to something else. I wonder what it is? Check this Picture book out and see for yourself.

A read aloud story for young children with superb illustrations. NicNic is a monkey living with his mum and dad and we see him in various guises and in various environments.

I did worry on first reading about whether there are flamingos in Chile. There are in the Atacama desert.

An excellent first publication. Some good wisdom for parents.

Dream Big Little Mole by Tom Percival, illus. Christine Pym. Pub. Bloomsbury, 2021.

March 26, 2021 Comments off

Little moles watches the birds fly and the ducks swim and she wishes she could do that. Owl tells her to “dream Big…Be brilliant. Be you”. So she does.

Little mole decides she is good at digging holes so she sets off to dig the biggest hole ever. But nothing goes smooth. She digs through foxes roof and ruins his day, ruins someone’s lawn, causes a little rabbit to trip on one of his dirt mounds and lose his kite.

She decides to give up but otter tells her to keep going. She digs down and through the banks of a river. Check out and see what happens.

Good message about holding onto your dreams and taking risks.

Illustrations enhance the text. Mole is suitably inquisitive, owl is studious, hedgehog is smug and otter is charming.

A good read-a loud for juniors.

Dreamweavers Bk1. Awa and the Dreamrealm by Isa Pearl Ritchie.

November 10, 2019 Comments off

awaDreamweavers Bk1. Awa and the Dreamrealm by Isa Pearl Ritchie. Pub.Te Ra Aroha Press, 2019.

After reading this fantasy with a realism twist for primary and intermediate school readers, I played the Gary Wright song Dreamweaver. Do this yourself and see why.

Awa is of oriental descent, she is sensitive, her parents have just split up, she has moved to a small Wellington flat with her mother and she has started at another school.

At night she has dreams that seem real and one evening she sees a light that turns out to be a Dreamcharmer named Veila. Veila teaches Awa to enter the Dreamrealm where unbeknown to her she has an important role to play as a Dreamweaver.

At school Awa is bullied by Felicity but meets a friend Ella who is also bullied by Felicity. The divorce of the parents, the bullying and the racism, provide the realism twist to the dream world fantasy that Awa enters but somehow there is a connection.

This first part of a trilogy has Awa learn to understand the power the powers she has and the enemies she faces in the Dreamrealm in the personna of The Politician and Judgement. I feel the best is yet to come.

Easy to read, short chapters and much to appeal to pre-teens. The fantasy is drawn from the Greek legend Narcissus and from Maori mythology especially the nature of dreams.

Dear Princess Meghan by Sophie Siers & Katie Wilson.

November 3, 2019 Comments off

meghanDear Princess Meghan by Sophie Siers & Katie Wilson. Pub. Millwood press, 2019.

You could see this picture book as satire or you could see it as the hopes and dreams of a little girl who is in no hurry to meet her prince but has ideas about what it will take based on Princess Meghan’s wedding.

Emma is a young girl who is impressed that a girl just like herself “becomes a famous actress, falls in love with a Prince and becomes a true, real life princess”.

She is determined to follow Meghan’s path a gets the role of Anne Boleyn in the school play. She starts acting the way she thinks a princess should act in front of her family and class mates. It doesn’t go down well.

She writes to Princess Meghan in a series of letters asking her concerns “how did you learn to give orders?” Do you really have to let your maid brush your teeth?”.

Emma has a lot to learn but finally realises “luckily I’m not in any hurry to find my Prince!”

Love the letter writing and the illustrations are suitably royal and multi cultural.

Categories: Picture book Tags: , ,

The Girl and the Dinosaur by Hollie Hughes Illus. Sarah Massini

September 30, 2019 Comments off

girl dinosaurThe Girl and the Dinosaur by Hollie Hughes Illus. Sarah Massini. Pub. Bloomsbury, 2019.

From ordinary events can come great dreams and imagination. Marianne digs for bones in the sand on the beach. She looks lonely to the fisher folk who frequent the coast and they wish she had friends.

Marianne however is content and at night she dreams great fantasy of the dinosaur bones she finds coming alive. She rides with the dinosaur to a land in the sky and sees unicorns fairies and a party place for children and their dreams.

When morning comes Marianne is found digging for bones on the beach but this time with other children.

Rhyming text is enhanced greatly by simple water colour illustrations that reflect the loneliness of Marianne at the start and tell their own fantasy story when she dreams.

A good writing team this one. For juniors and primary level.

The Sea Dreamer by Terry Fitzgibbon.

September 26, 2018 Comments off

sea dreamerThe Sea Dreamer by Terry Fitzgibbon. Pub. New Holland, 2018.

When Sam goes to sleep he dreams and floats away on his toy tugboat Wakato accompanied by Pania of the reef. he goes on a journey of discovery and in the process learns about the sea and all the animals who live in it and around it.

There is a strong conservation element about his discoveries which include sea life getting tangled in drastic plastic pollution. He dreams of towing the plastic back to shore for recycling.

Sam learns that the sea is our main source of oxygen and that the power of the oceans waves can help create energy for when oil supplies run out.

he learns about the giant squid, about whales about the albatross and the North and South poles. he wakes with the message that we need to look after the sea and keep it healthy.

Good message and great colourful illustrations. My favourite was Sam towing the mother polar bear and her cub to safety on a flimsy ice floe.

Well worth purchasing for the home or school library.

The Boy in the Olive Grove by Fleur Beale

October 4, 2012 Comments off

The Boy in the Olive Grove by Fleur Beale. Pub. Random House, 2012.

I always look forward to a Fleur Beale novel and this did not disappoint. It is a love story of sorts but there is more to it than that. After getting totally wasted and getting her stomach pumped out 18 year old Bess has to leave school or be expelled.

She gets home to find her father seriously ill and his business going down the gurgler. To make matters worse her older brother Hadleigh takes off for parts unknown and her mother acts like a frosty super bitch.

Not only that but Bess is haunted by two repetitive dreams, one about meeting a boy in an olive grove and the other about burning a woman believed to be a witch at the stake. Could it be a past life breaking through? Have we all been this way before? Make your own mind up about this.

Bess throws herself into resurrecting her fathers business with some inventive ideas and tries to get to the bottom of her dreams by consulting  a psychologist. Some very interesting results.

There is much in this novel for teenagers to get into and I will leave you with a bit of advice from the book…”Tragic heroines are all very well in opera… but very tedious in real life”. There is a bit of both in this novel.