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Blood Ties

I received my copy from the publisher.
By: Garth Nix and Sean Williams
Spirit Animals bk 3

Meilin has had enough of waiting and working with the others, she wants to help her father, her people. She has no idea what state her land is in but that isn’t going to stop her, she knows what she wants and she knows how capable she is, so she chooses to leave the group and go home, where she feels she might at least be able to do some good. The welcome she receives though is not quiet what she expected. Whilst she is trying to get home, the enemy are still pushing forward and her friends face a deadly foe.
This is Meilin’s story, it is a very interesting arc for her, because as capable as she is she is ruled by emotions and to find she isn’t always right and can make mistakes is a big thing for her to try and come to terms with. The others still have their part to play and ultimately it turns out that they really work best when they work together. This is a story of adversity and coming together as a team to deal with the challenges thrown up in front of them.
Publisher: Scholastic Australia
Published: 01 April 2014
Format: Paperback 208 pages
Categories: Science Fiction Fantasy
ISBN 13: 9781743620007
Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on side of page

Aurealis Awards – 2012 Finalists

The finalists of the 2012 Aurealis Awards have been announced and it is an awesome list that covers 13 categories. Now not all of the categories I’m going to list are kid’s and YA but some of these titles and authors are.


Fantasy Novel

Bitter Greens by Kate Forsyth (Random House Australia)

Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff (Tor UK)

Sea Hearts by Margo Lanagan (Allen & Unwin)

Flame of Sevenwaters by Juliet Marillier (Pan Macmillan Australia)

Winter Be My Shield by Jo Spurrier (HarperVoyager)

Fantasy Short Story

“Sanaa’s Army” by Joanne Anderton (Bloodstones, Ticonderoga Publications)

“The Stone Witch” by Isobelle Carmody (Under My Hat, Random House)

“First They Came” by Deborah Kalin (Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine 55)

“Bajazzle” by Margo Lanagan (Cracklescape, Twelfth Planet Press)

“The Isles of the Sun” by Margo Lanagan (Cracklescape, Twelfth Planet Press)

Science Fiction Novel

Suited by Jo Anderton (Angry Robot)

The Last City by Nina D’Aleo (Momentum)

And All The Stars by Andrea K Host (self-­‐published)

The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf by Ambelin Kwaymullina (Walker Books)

Confusion of Princes by Garth Nix (Allen & Unwin)

The Rook by Daniel O’Malley (Harper Collins)

Science Fiction Short Story

“Visitors” by James Bradley (Review of Australian Fiction)

“Significant Dust” by Margo Lanagan (Cracklescape, Twelfth Planet Press)

“Beyond Winter’s Shadow” by Greg Mellor (Wild Chrome, Ticonderoga Publications)

“The Trouble with Memes” by Greg Mellor (Wild Chrome, Ticonderoga Publications)

“The Lighthouse Keepers’ Club” by Kaaron Warren (Exotic Gothic 4, PS Publishing)

Young Adult Novel

Dead, Actually by Kaz Delaney (Allen & Unwin)

And All The Stars by Andrea K. Host (self-­‐published)

The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf by Ambelin Kwaymullina (Walker Books)

Sea Hearts by Margo Lanagan (Allen & Unwin)

Into That Forest by Louis Nowra (Allen & Unwin)

Young Adult Short Story

“Stilled Lifes x 11” by Justin D’Ath (Trust Me Too, Ford Street Publishing)

“The Wisdom of the Ants” by Thoraiya Dyer (Clarkesworld)

“Rats” by Jack Heath (Trust Me Too, Ford Street Publishing)

“The Statues of Melbourne” by Jack Nicholls (Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine 56)

“The Worry Man” by Adrienne Tam (self-­‐published)

CHILDREN’S FICTION (told primarily through words)  

Brotherband: The Hunters by John Flanagan (Random House Australia)

Princess Betony and the Unicorn by Pamela Freeman (Walker Books)

The Silver Door by Emily Rodda (Scholastic)

Irina the Wolf Queen by Leah Swann (Xoum Publishing)

CHILDREN’S FICTION (told primarily through pictures)

Little Elephants by Graeme Base (author and illustrator) (Viking Penguin)

The Boy Who Grew Into a Tree by Gary Crew (author) and Ross Watkins (illustrator) (Penguin Group Australia)

In the Beech Forest by Gary Crew (author) and Den Scheer (illustrator) (Ford Street Publishing)

Inside the World of Tom Roberts by Mark Wilson (author and illustrator) (Lothian Children’s Books)


I definitely have some favourites in this list but best of luck to all authors who made it this far. Can’t wait to see who the winners will be, they announce the winners on the 18th of May.

The Monster

I received my copy from the publisher.By: Garth Nix and Sean Williams

TroubleTwisters book 2

The troubletwisters were lucky last time in defeating the Evil. Now is the time for them to focus, listen and learn. It is time for them to master their powers. That is not all though because Jaide and Jack still have to go to school but things there are looking up as there is a new girl, Tara, and she could be a friend. Strange things are going on though, including plenty of talk about the Portland Monster. Grandma X knows so many things that she isn’t sharing, Kleo and Ari are in a battle of their own and the twins are feeling left out. It seems that even with everything going in Jaide and Jack’s help is not wanted and combined with the difficulties of mastering their skills, they are left feeling very frustrated and prone to seeing the Evil everywhere. Are they falling victims to their own imaginations? Or is there really something they can do?

This story is dark complex and a little frustrating, but that is not necessarily a bad thing. The twins themselves are frustrated with the limits that are being put on them, which is understandable but Jaide’s repeated insistence of getting involved when she has been asked not to did get a little irritating. Having said that there are times when it is that very trait that pushes the story along. I also think I mentioned in the first book that this trait is very appropriate, an accurate representation of some people of that age.

On the whole the story is appealing and entertaining. It’s very darkness and various setbacks and frustrations are what set this book apart from many others in the age category. The addition of Tara is a welcome one as she helps break up the narrow focus of the twins.

Nix and Williams have given us a tight and well crafted story. If you like the work of either writer or you are looking for something that is more of a dark adventure, then definitely give this book a look.

Publisher: Allen & Unwin

Published: 01 May 2012

Format: Paperback 312 pages

Categories: Adventure, Mystery, Magic

ISBN 13: 9781742373997

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

A Confusion of Princes – Book Trailer

Garth Nix has a new book coming out in April 2012. Can you say awesome?

Here’s the trailer.

2011 Get Reading! Campaign

In Sydney today the 2011 Get Reading! campaign was launched with the release of the ’50 Books You Can’t Put Down’ list for this year.

This year’s campaign will run from 29 August to 30 September.

The reading guide this year features 35 Australian titles, with 13 of the 50 titles children’s/ young adult books.

The children’s and YA titles are:

Baby Wombats Week Board Book (Jackie French & Bruce Whatley)

The Flying Orchestra (Clare McFadden, UQP)

Mr Badger and the Big Surprise (Leigh Hobbs, A&U)

Billie B Brown: The Secret Message (Sally Rippin & Aki Fukuoka, HGE)

The Three Doors #1: The Golden Door (Emily Rodda)

Museum of Thieves (Lian Tanner, A&U)

Troubletwisters (Garth Nix & Sean Williams, A&U)

Mice (Gordon Reece, A&U)

Last Sacrifice: Vampire Academy V6 (Richelle Mead, Penguin)

Passion (Lauren Kate, Doubleday)

The Hunger Games (Suzanne Collins)

Lament (Maggie Stiefvater)

Heroes of Olympus – The Lost Hero (Rick Riordan, Puffin)


I received this as an ARC from the publisher.

By: Garth Nix and Sean Williams

Twins Jack and Jaide have had a fairly normal life for 12 years until the day their home mysteriously explodes and they are forced to go and live with a Grandmother they have never met, in a town they have never heard of. In a short amount of time it becomes clear the Grandma X is beyond a little weird, but that is only the beginning of the troubles and oddities they discover. Truths they have always known become not quite so true and why does Grandma X keep calling them ‘troubletwisters’? Then there are the talking cats, swarms of insects and mini tornadoes appearing to trash their room.

They quickly discover that life is very different to what they thought and out there is a darkness they never knew existed.

An enjoyable and entertaining read that left me wanting to know what happens next. Though I have to say I did experience levels of frustration as I read, which I came to the conclusion was me identifying too closely with Jack and Jaide. Like them I wanted to be told what was going on and not be put off until a better time. Surely that is a sign these authors have created believable characters in a somewhat fantastical setting.

Publisher: Allen & Unwin

Published: 01 May 2011

Format: Hardback 304 pages

Categories: Adventure, Fantasy

ISBN 13: 9780545258975

Pre-order: here

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