By: Kristi Yamaguchi
Illustrated by: Tim Bowers
Poppy, the little pig with great big dreams is back. This time her dreams and her skating are taking her to Paris for a big international competition. Poppy is a little nervous but her best friend tells her she shouldn’t worry because ‘everyone smiles in the same language’. Poppy makes some wonderful new friends from all over the world.
Beautifully told this story is about overcoming fears and making friends in new and different ways and places. Poppy is a great character who always has a smile despite her nerves. She is encouraged and encouraging. Yamaguchi and Bowers have once again presented us with a charming tale that is well worth a look.
Publisher: Sphinx Publishing
Published: 21 March 2012
Format: Hardback 32 pages
Categories: Sports Stories, Animal Stories
ISBN 13: 9781402266447
Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of the page
By: Kristi Yamaguchi
Illustrated by: Tim Bowers
Poppy is a little pig with big dreams. She wants to be a star – a ballerina, o model, a singer. It turns out though that that isn’t as easy as it sounds. Lots of people say she can’t but her family and best friend tell her not to give up and to keep dreaming big. Poppy is a determined little pig who truly believes in herself. Then one day she glides out onto the ice, and even though she falls, she gets back up because skating feels so wonderful.
Poppy is a wonderful little pig and her story is one of determination and perseverance, great traits to instill in our young ones. The story is uplifting and joyful, the illustrations are fun and appealing. A heartwarming book.
Publisher: Sourcebooks Inc
Published: 21 November 2011
Format: Hardback 32 pages
Categories: Animal Stories, Dreams, Sport
ISBN 13: 9781402252754
Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of page
By: Shamini Flint
Marcus Atkinson is 9 and doesn’t want to play soccer. He also isn’t interested in keeping a diary. His dad though is big on writing down goals and getting involved, which is how Marcus finds himself semi-infamous for scoring an own goal with his butt. He hopes this will mean he can stop playing soccer. No such luck. It is a good thing he is good at maths – why can’t his dad just let him do that? Also it is a good thing others on the soccer team can really play the game.
If you have a 7-9 year old who is interested in sport then these books might appeal. Stylistically they are like the Wimpy Kid books. Marcus is no doubt an athletic underdog and in this the humour is found. There were a couple of things that I wasn’t keen on in this book; firstly if he is so good at math how is it he is so terrible at spelling (haf for have), and after a while the misunderstanding of soccer references seems to get a little tired. However there aren’t many sports books for kids that age so if you are looking for one then give these a look.
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
Published: 01 January 2012
Format: Paperback 96 pages
Categories: Humour, Sports Stories
ISBN 13: 9781742378251
Purchase: use booktopia link on the side of the page
By: Carolyn Keene
Part of the Nancy Drew Girl Detective series
George has decided to compete in the grueling La Ruta mountain bike race in Costa Rica. It is a three day even and Nancy and Bess are joining her as her support crew. Before the race even starts they learn that someone has been threatening top US cyclist Derek Woodhall. It seems some one doesn’t want him to win. There are a few suspects but who has a motive to take such deadly action?
A straight forward mystery story set against the backdrop of a grueling sporting event in an exotic location. The characters in this story stay fairly true to the original incarnations. Nancy is the driving investigative force, George the girl of action and Bess the loyal, brave friend who is more interested in enjoying life. The crime is interesting but in no way graphic in it’s description. If you are looking for a good mystery story for a middle grade reader then these are a pretty good choice. The original stories are still available in some places and it was a favourite of mine at that age.
Publisher: Aladdin Paperbacks
Published: 21 August 2007
Format: Paperback 160 pages
Categories: Sports Crime
ISBN 13: 9781416935247
Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on side of page
By: Andrew Joyner
Boris’ class is in training for sports day. Boris really wants to win and more than anything he wants to beat Eddie because Eddie is the guy who always wins everything. Boris’ best mate, Frederick just doesn’t want to come last, not such an easy thing as sport doesn’t come easy to Frederick. Then Boris comes up with a plan. A plan that will give him and Frederick the edge when sports day rolls around. Will Boris’s plan work though?
Another installment of the fun Boris series. The story is easily understandable with simple text and an appealing, almost comic book presentation. It is one of the few series for those just starting chapter books that has colour illustrations and this is one of the reasons to look at this series if you are looking at a transition book between picture books and chapter books.
Published: 30 May 2011
Format: Paperback 68 pages
Categories: Humour, Friendship
ISBN 13: 9780143305040
Purchase: here or use Booktopia logo on side of page
I received this copy from Penguin Books as an ARC
By Felice Arena
Gus Delfino is 14 and a basketball player for the Pennsbury High Panthers who have just made it to the U15’s district playoffs for only the second time in the schools history. He is pretty sure they are going to go all the way. Gus is like a lot of guys though, the girl of his dreams doesn’t talk to him and he is bullied by bigger guys. All of which pales into insignificance when Gus is involved in a terrible accident. It’s amazing he survived but then he’s not so sure he’d call it survival when he wakes up in the body of an old man. Now he has a 70 year old wife, a 50th wedding anniversary and really bad taste in clothes. No-one believes it is him and it looks as though he isn’t going to be able to help his team get to and win the final game.
Gus seems like a fairly typical high school boy focussed only on himself and his wants. He has friends and problems and things seem very different when he is forced to look outside his own little world. This story moves along at a fairly brisk pace and has quite a few funny moments in between the more serious ones. It’s light tone, modern style and easy readability should ensure a readership that will enjoy it. With it’s sports focus it’s bound to appeal to Specky Magee fans. It’s style puts this more in the 10+ preteen reading category than older YA and there is nothing in the content that would be considered unsuitable for that younger age range.
Publisher: Puffin Books
Published: 1 August 2011
Format: Paperback 174 pgs
Categories: Sport, Friendship, Humour,
ISBN 13: 9780143306092
Purchase: (This book isn’t available until August 1)use the Booktopia logo on side of the page
By: Sally Rippin
Part of the Billy B Brown Series
Billie and her best friend Jack always play together until one day when Jack is asked to play soccer with some of the other boys from their class. Billy says she will play but the boys say she can’t because she is a girl. Billy starts to feel all jumbled up, it doesn’t seem right. Billy decides to be brave and tell Jack how it felt when he went off, and she comes up with a plan and needs Jack’s help. Will this plan prove to the boys that girls can play soccer?
A wonderful little story about a determined little girl. It is a story that lets girls know that sometimes it’s okay to want to do things that others say you can’t, or to stand up for something you think is wrong. This book is a good alternative if you are looking for a book with a female character that isn’t a fairy, friends with a fairy or a dancer. With large print and pictures on about every second page it is a good early reader choice.
Publisher: Hardie Grant Books
Published: 01 April 2010
Format: Paperback 60 pages
Categories: General Sports Stories
ISBN 13: 9781921564932