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Archive for June, 2009

Join Australia’s best children’s writers at the Byron Bay Writers Festival (NSW) on Saturday 8 August from 9.00am – 2.30pm.

In the kids’ marquee, kids aged 6 to 16 will find authors, book signings, storytelling and fun activities!

For more information about events and purchasing tickets, visit the Byron Bay Writers Festival website. (The festival runs from 7 – 9 August 2009.)

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The first time Minton the salamander saw Hector, he was shooting out of a volcano! The Hottest Boy Who Ever Lived: coverHector is the hottest boy who ever lived.

Inside he burned like a bonfire.
When he sighed, the grass turned brown.

He lives near a volcano, with Minton for a pet. He eats mangoes and pineapples and there’s nobody to tell him when to go to bed! But he is very lonely.

One day there is a terrible storm and Hector and Minton are swept out to sea, still clinging to a tree. They drift until they arrive in a country of Vikings and freezing weather. The Vikings are afraid of Hector’s unusual heat (and red hair!), and start to blame him for the bad luck they have. Hector has to find a way to reach out to them so he can make a new home for himself.

The Hottest Boy Who Ever Lived is illustrated by Kim Gamble (Anna Fienberg and Kim Gamble work together on the Tashi books). The illustrations really help you to imagine how Hector feels as you read the story of his journey. (My favourite illustration is one of Hector holding a child who fell into the ice – you can see that he really cares, and just looking at it makes you feel warm!)

This is a good winter read!

The Hottest Boy Who Ever Lived, by Anna Fienberg, illustrated by Kim Gamble, Allen & Unwin, 2009 (first published 1993)

Our review copy was sent to us by Allen & Unwin

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Will suit older readers (upper primary).The Princess Plot by Kirsten Boie

Jenna attends an audition to star as a princess in a movie (without her mother’s permission), and is amazed to be chosen for the role over her friends. Even more amazingly, Jenna’s normally strict mother gives permission for her to fly to Scandia for the movie shoot, where Jenna discovers her own resemblance to the Princess of Scandia, Malena. And Malena has gone missing …

This is an exciting mystery – you might find yourself staying up late to finish reading it! The story had unexpected twists  and is told from several different perspectives. Nothing will be the same for Jenna by the end of the book. If you like a story with royalty, a kidnapping, a chase, mistaken identities, and an everyday girl (turned heroine), then you’ll love The Princess Plot!

The Princess Plot, by Kirsten Boie, Chicken House, May 2009

Our review copy was sent to us by Chicken House

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Winter writing competition: entries close 3 JULY 2009

Win a $20 book voucher! Write a short story up to 350 words (shorter is fine). Your story must include this line: ‘The paper aeroplane was gone!’

*UPDATE: in the winter issue of the magazine, the rules state that entries must be handwritten. It has since been decided that WE WILL ALSO ACCEPT TYPED ENTRIES.

Please remember to include a competition entry form for each entry. This may be printed from the website, photocopied, or contact us to have one emailed or posted to you.

For more information (and to print a competition entry form), visit the Alphabet Soup website: www.alphabetsoup.net.au.

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For kids in Western Australia –  Spare Parts Puppet Theatre is doing ‘The Man from Snowy River’ in the July school holidays. They are also running puppet-making workshops!

For more information, visit their website: www.sppt.asn.au.

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This is a graphic novel – it has no words and tells the story in a kind of comic-book The Hero of Little Street style.  It’s action-packed and fun to read!

The boy in the story (our future hero) is out for a walk and is surprised when a ball hits him on the head – and he kicks it into a fountain. The ball owners are a gang of bullies, and (not being pleased about the wet ball) they chase him, until he escapes by hiding in an art gallery. The boy wanders through the gallery until a dog in one of paintings comes to life and leads him into a famous painting by Vermeer.

Inside the painting, he finds he has gone back in time to 17th century Holland (in fact, to Little Street, in Delft). The dog runs off , and the boy has to rescue his doggy friend and avoid being caught himself. Delft is a dangerous place!

There’s a surprise ending to this story. The pictures are fun, there’s lots of action and you get to see what it would have been like to live in Holland back in the 17th century. (It involved a lot of fast running if you were a dog on the streets of Delft!)

This is the third adventure in the ‘Boy Bear’ series but you don’t need to read the others to enjoy this book. (You might want to read them though! Look for The Boy, the Bear, the Baron, the Bard, and Midsummer Knight.)

The Hero of Little Street, by Gregory Rogers, Allen & Unwin, 2009

Our review copy was sent to us by Allen & Unwin

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If you are 25 or younger, live in Western Australia and like writing poetry, bushlandyou could enter your work in The Roland Leach Poetry Prize.

Prizes will be awarded for first, second and third in each age grouping. Winners receive book vouchers, a trophy and a certificate. The Roland Leach Poetry Prize is presented to the writer with the most outstanding entry.

Entries must be received no later than 5pm, Friday 4 September 2009.

For more information and an entry form, see the Nedlands Library website, or call them on 9273 3644.

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