Posted in Beaconsfield Primary School, book reviews, Book reviews by kids

Book review: Tea and Sugar Christmas

REVIEWED BY JAMIE, 11, WA

Tea and sugar Christmas (cover)

Tea and Sugar Christmas by Jane Jolly, ill. Robert Ingpen, NLA Publishing, ISBN 9780642278630

This book was written by Jane Jolly and illustrated by Robert Ingpen — an Australian award-winning illustrator, who I think draws the most amazing pictures I have ever seen. This picture book has around 16 pages with black and white illustrations, along with some coloured ones too.

This fictional short story based on true life events tells the story of a young aboriginal girl named Kathleen. She is waiting with so much excitement for the Thursday weekly supply train, which serviced the remote communities from Port Augusta to Kalgoorlie for 81 years. However this train is a special train as it is the first Thursday of December, which means Father Christmas will be visiting.

I especially liked how at the end of this book, it has a few pages with factual information and real pictures of the supply train. It tells how these isolated people relied on the train for groceries, household goods and even medical advice.

This is Jamie’s first book review for Alphabet Soup. If you’d like to read more book reviews by Beaconsfield Primary students, you can click on ‘Beaconsfield Primary School’ in the grey categories box in the right column of this blog. To send us YOUR book review, check out our submission guidelines. Happy reading!

Posted in book reviews, Christmas, illustrator, what we're reading

Snowy’s Christmas – book review

Over the next few months, I’ll be reviewing a number of Christmas books. (Last yearSnowy's Christmas (cover) I reviewed Roland Harvey’s Big Book of Christmas, and that will certainly be back on our shelf when we pull all the boxes of tinsel out of the back cupboard!)

I have a number of Christmas books in my ‘to read’ pile, and on top of the pile is a picture book – Snowy’s Christmas, by author Sally Murphy, and illustrated by David Murphy.

Snowy is a white kangaroo and he’s feeling a bit ‘left out’. He can’t win races against the other roos as he bounces short and high – instead of long and low. He’s no good at hiding (it’s easy to spot a white kangaroo against all that red dirt), and he looks sadly into the billabong to see his ‘face reflected in the water was not rugged and red like the other roos, but soft and white.’

But then he meets a stranger, who shows him that his differences make him the perfect choice for an important job …

Snowy’s Christmas puts an Australian spin on the story of ‘Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer,’ and adds something ‘snowy’ to our hot summer Christmases! Snowy’s story is accompanied by David’s fun illustrations – make sure you look for a touch of Christmas on almost every page turn. (I really love the star stuck to an echidna’s spines, and the jingle bells around the neck of a platypus.)

This is a great picture book for celebrating Christmas in the heat.

Snowy’s Christmas is going on a blog tour, and we’ll be talking to the author and the illustrator here, on Sunday 18 October 2009. Be sure to stop by then for your chance to WIN YOUR OWN COPY of Snowy’s Christmas!

A review copy of Snowy’s Christmas was sent to us by Random House Australia