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Archive for September, 2012

The Very Ugly Bug

By: Liz Pichon

Our bug is a very ugly bug. She wonders why she is so different to the other bugs. Why doesn’t she have teeny, tiny eyes so she can hide in the berries, or a shiny green back to hide in the leaves. Instead she has boggly eyes, a wibbly head and a hairy back. Then a big hungry bird comes looking for a yummy snack and bug finds out just how remarkable she is.

This is a cute story about being different and discovering yourself in the strangest of circumstances. Bug searches for her identity in a story that is simply told. This is easily relatable and enjoyable. It is wonderfully and quirkily illustrated.

Publisher: Little Tiger Press

Published: 07 June 2004

Format: Hardback 25 pages

Categories: Picture Books, Self Discovery, Identity

ISBN 13: 9781845060169

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of page

Beautiful Creatures – Movie Trailer

Beautiful Creatures is a young adult title by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl, it is the first of the Caster series and this movie trailer looks pretty cool. I probably should say right now though, that I am a huge Emma Thompson fan.

You can find some cool pics from the set here.

Stormdancer – Book Trailer

This is just because I have finally gotten around to starting this book and it is awesome!

The Devil’s Fire

I got my copy from the publisher.By: Stuart Daly

The Witch Hunter Chronicles Book 3

Jakob is one of the Hexenjager, an elite organisation of witch hunters. They are in the process of breaking into a jail in Rotterdam when things take a turn they didn’t expect and Jakob and his compatriots Armand, von Frankenthal and Francesca find themselves on a boat to England. There they are drafted to help fight the Sons of Cain and prevent a terrible prophecy from being fulfilled. The Sons of Cain have stolen The Codex Gigas also known as the Devil’s Bible and plan to use it to summon the Price of Darkness. Jakob and his friends will team up with the Angeli Mortis and British royalty to battle some of the most evil beings any of them have ever faced. Their lives and the fate of the country relies on their success, it will be a challenge for the best of them.

A ride through fantasy and history. Jakob is a likable central character, he is brave and trained but young and it shows in his actions and that makes him interesting. It is nice to see characters with flaws. He is the perfect centre to Armand, charismatic team leader and lethal fighter, determined Francesca and loyal von Frankenthal.

There are loyalties and tensions between the groups trying to work together and that makes the situation more believable and readable. Daly says he was inspired by the works of Dumas and you can see it in his tone and style. If you like a swashbuckling read with more than a dash of the supernatural then definitely give this a look. Sweeping from Rotterdam to London it is dark, gritty and engaging. I will say though some of it felt a little awkward but it wasn’t anything I could really put my finger on and ultimately didn’t stop me enjoying the story.

Publisher: Random House Australia

Published: 02 July 2012

Format: Paperback 432 pages

Categories: Historical, Fantasy, Witches,

ISBN 13: 9781742754802

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of page

My Mummy

By: Paula Metcalf & Lucy Barnard

Little Bear reckons he could travel anywhere in the world and not find a mummy as great as his. She plays and sings, kisses booboos better, cooks and gives great hugs. The best thing about her though is that she is his.

A wonderful celebration of the relationship between mother and child, told through the eyes of the child. The illustrations are warm and appealing. The text, like the plot is simple and celebratory. A nice story to curl up and share.

Publisher: MacMillan Children’s Books

Published: 16 February 2012

Format: Paperback 32 pages

Categories: Mummies, Family,

ISBN 13: 978033054570

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of the page

Time Thieves

By: Charlie Carter

Book 1 of the Omega Squad series

Omega Squad are an elite team of time travelers, or troopers as they are known. They are sent back to observe and gather information from key points in history for something called Operation Battle Book. Previous missions have run fairly smoothly but now things are starting to get a little strange. Mission Controller Professor Perdu is not as worried as perhaps she should be though, she believes they are just experiencing glitches but the truth is far more sinister. Someone is stealing Time and Energy bundles, and trying to sabotage the operation in the process. This activity is not only illegal it is incredibly dangerous and could affect many. Will Agent 005, Napoleon Smythe, be able to track down the thief in time to save his friend and teammate, Winston?

A totally fun action ride. Napoleon is a great central character a leader in training, and throughout the story he shows great moments of that. His teammates balance him out wonderfully; the impulsive Winston and the tireless Amazon. Their dynamic is interesting to read and I really want to see how it all develops.

The book is fast paced, filled with fun technology and plenty of action. The world that has been created for these characters is an interesting one and like the characters there were some things mentioned outside of the central three that I really would like to see developed in a future book. As an added bonus for those who would prefer their kids to read non-fiction, this series contains snippets of history throughout.

This is the perfect series for fans of Battle Boy or even just someone who loves a bit of action. Possibly best suited for around 9/10 year olds.

Publisher: Pan Macmillan Australia

Published: 01 September 2012

Format: Paperback 144 pages

Categories: Action, Adventure

ISBN 13: 9781742610931

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of the page

The End of the World

By: Derek Landy

Part of the Skulduggery Pleasant series

Ryan always thought he was an ordinary boy until accosted by four very strange people in the library. Then things begin to happen and from out of nowhere a girl dressed all in black steps in. If Ryan is to survive and figure out why he is being pursued then he is going to need the help of Valkyrie Cain and Skulduggery Pleasant. It turns out that it is not just his survival at stake but that of the entire world. Fortunately, saving the world is what Valkyrie and Skulduggery do best.

This is a totally fun and action packed short story. Skulduggery and Valkyrie are in their element, kicking butt and saving the world. Ryan is an intriguing centre to this installment. A wonderful short addition to the series. This volume comes complete with a tiny story at the end that was the result of a competition. A funny bonus, the characters chosen from the competition are great and I wouldn’t be disappointed to see them again.

Publisher: HarperCollins Children’s Books

Published: 24 February 2012

Format: Paperback 128 pages

Categories: Fantasy, Action, Humour

ISBN 13: 9780007466788

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of the page

Sophia the Flame Sister

By: Amber Castle

Spell Sisters series Book 1

Gwen tries hard to do all the things a lady should do to please her aunt but the truth is she finds it boring. She really just wants to go on an adventure. Then she finds out how the wicked Morgana Le Fay has trapped the rest of the Spell Sisters away from the magical island of Avalon. This means Avalon and the land around it is dying all because Morgana wants all the power herself. Gwen and her best friend Flora, set out to rescue the Spell Sisters. Their first quest is to find Sophia who has been transformed and trapped somewhere in an enchanted forest.

Highly entertaining adventure story. Gwen is a determined girl who is assisted by the at first reluctant, Flora. Gwen is the more gung ho of the two girls, she really longs for adventure like this. There are things that she isn’t so good at though and it is a good thing she has Flora along with her. The story is an enjoyable read and the first of a series that will be well worth a look if you are wanting something with adventure that is more along fantasy lines but isn’t about fairies or magic animals. (Though there is a magic horse in it.)

I’d say this would be perfect for an 8-10 year old.

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children’sBooks

Published: 01 March 2012

Format: Paperback 160 pages

Categories: Adventure, Fantasy

ISBN 13: 9780857072474

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of the page

One Spooky Night

By: Kate Stone

A little monster takes a walk through the woods one dark and spooky night. He hears and sees many things but they aren’t as scary as some might think. He is heading to the spooky old house at the edge of the woods. What could possibly be going on?

A fun halloween tale that is dark and yet not scary.  The text is really basic but its presentation is what makes this book stand out. Every second page is opaque and the card pages have bits cut out of them. A fun little book but not a good idea if the little hands are prone to tearing it up.

Publisher: Accord Publishing

Published: 09 August 2011

Format: Paperback 36 pages

Categories: Spooky, Halloween

ISBN 13: 9781449403300

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of page


By: Tamora Pierce

Circle Opens series bk 3

Tris is visiting the city of Tharios with her mentor Niklaren. This is another opportunity for learning and Tris loves knowledge. There are things happening in Tharios though and when Tris feels the pull of power by a glass mage Keth she is furious until she realises he is untrained and didn’t realise what he was doing. Keth isn’t her only concern though as it appears a killer is out to unbalance the peace and it seems that somehow Keth’s power may be the key to finding this criminal. First though they need to figure out his powers.

Tris is feisty, a perfect foil for the reluctant, older Keth. She is headstrong which means his impatience and age are less likely to sway her than if he had a more normal mentor. Tris brings a certain stubornness and determination to the senario. She is out of place in her surroundings and while she tries to adapt she refuses to lose her own identity. Keth’s character is well developed and he comes across so very real, you absolutely feel for his past and the place he finds himself in.

The double storyline, teaching and crime, is woven together wonderfully and it makes for a highly entertaining story. The city of Tharios is realised with great detail and texture. The moments of sadness and tension are offset by well placed humour. I adore Pierce’s works and read this twice through when I got it, but then if you have read many of my reviews you may already know I love Tamora Pierce’s works.

Highly recommended for readers age 10 up.

Publisher: Scholastic

Published: 01 March 2004

Format: Paperback 357 pages

Categories: Fantasy, Crime

ISBN 13: 9780590396967

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of page

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