Posted in authors, interviews, teachers' resources

Lazy Daisy: an interview with Caz Goodwin

Caz Goodwin and Daisy the Koala
Daisy and Caz Goodwin

MEET THE AUTHOR

Caz Goodwin lives in Victoria and writes picture books, junior fiction, short stories and poetry for children. Her latest picture book Lazy Daisy is a hilarious rhyming tale, illustrated by Ashley King.

From the publisher:
All of Jasper’s dreams come true when he finds his very own ‘puppy dog’ to walk in Centenary Park. But Daisy the ‘dog’ isn’t much of a walker — she tends to spend most of her day climbing gumtrees and dozing. If only someone would explain to Jasper that Daisy is a koala, NOT a dog! Just as Jasper’s about to give up on his dream, he has a madcap idea of how Daisy can still join him on his daily walk, whether she’s asleep or not.

We’re thrilled to welcome Caz Goodwin to Alphabet Soup today!


Lazy Daisy (cover) by Caz Goodwin and illustrated by Ashley KingDo you write on a computer, or use pen and paper?
When I’m writing a first draft, I use old-fashioned pencil and paper. I often use an exercise book, and only write on one side and use the opposite page for notes and ideas. I like to cross out and edit as I go, and make a lovely, scribbly mess. Later, I type it onto my computer.

You write picture books, novels, short stories and poems … how do you know which one to start writing if you get an idea?
My writing ideas usually start with a character. I toss the character around in my head for a while before I start writing, to work out what adventures they might have or what trouble they might get into. (I like to put my characters in lots of strife.) Once I have an idea of what the story will be, I can work out whether it would be best as a picture book or novel or short story.

Daisy Runs Wild (cover) by Caz Goodwin and illustrated by Ashley King

What’s next for Daisy?
Daisy the koala causes a hullabaloo in the next book, called Daisy Runs Wild. While on her daily walk, she unexpectedly leaps into the air and takes off round the park. Jasper runs after her as she interrupts a yoga class, ruins a game of cricket and accidentally pushes poor posh Mrs Pallot into the pond! Can Jasper work out what is wrong with Daisy?

(Daisy Runs Wild, published by Little Hare/Hardie Grant Egmont, will be released in March.)

Which of your characters is most like you?
If I’m honest, I’m quite a bit like Daisy the koala. Two of my favourite things are eating and sleeping, and despite my best intentions, I often end up in trouble.

Do you have a tip for young writers?
Can I give you two tips? Read a lot. Write a lot. (Like anything, your writing will improve the more you practice. And don’t forget to edit your work.)


Awesome extras:

Click here for Teachers’ Notes for Lazy Daisy.

Click for details of the QLD launch of Daisy Runs Wild 7 March 2020

Click for an author event & book launch (VIC) 28 March 2020. 

Lazy Daisy is out now! Daisy Runs Wild will be out in March 2020. Look for them at your nearest bookstore or library.

Posted in book reviews, Book reviews by kids, Glenridge Elementary School

Book review: Mercy Watson to the Rescue

Mercy Watson to the Rescue by Kate DiCamilloREVIEWED BY KALEIGHA, SECOND GRADE, MISSOURI, USA

Mercy Watson to the Rescue by Kate DiCamillo, Candlewick, ISBN 9780763645045

Do you love reading books with funny characters? Well then you’ll love to read about Mercy Watson. Mercy Watson is a pig who likes to eat hot buttered toast. She’s hilarious!

Do you like to read Mercy Watson to the Rescue?  I love it. Chapter 1 is very good. For example, on the first page Mercy is getting put into bed. Tell me, isn’t that a funny story?


Second grade students at Glenridge Elementary School (Missouri, USA) have been guest reviewers at Alphabet Soup over the past few weeks. Click here if you’d like to read more book reviews by Glenridge Elementary School. To send us YOUR book review, check out our submission guidelines. Happy reading!

Posted in book reviews, Book reviews by kids, Glenridge Elementary School

Book review: BAD KITTY SCHOOL DAZE

Bad Kitty School Daze by Nick BruelREVIEWED BY VIVIAN, SECOND GRADE, MISSOURI, USA

Bad Kitty: School Daze by Nick Bruel, Scholastic, ISBN 9781250039477

Do you like kittens? Well, I know a kitty that is bad! The book is called Bad Kitty: School Daze by Nick Bruel!

This book  is really funny because Petunia, who is a dog, thinks Bad Kitty is a cow! Bad Kitty gets in a fight with Puppy. But it’s weird because in pet school they do arts and crafts and stuff like that.

You will have to read this book to find out more! I give this book 10 out of 10 stars. I recommend this book for ages 2 to any age!


Second grade students at Glenridge Elementary School (Missouri, USA) are guest reviewers at Alphabet Soup. Click here if you’d like to read more book reviews by Glenridge Elementary School. To send us YOUR book review, check out our submission guidelines. Happy reading!

 

Posted in book reviews, Book reviews by kids, Glenridge Elementary School

Book review: DOG MAN

Dog Man by Dav PilkeyREVIEWED BY ORLANDO, SECOND GRADE, MISSOURI, USA

Dog Man by Dav Pilkey, Scholastic Inc, ISBN 9780545581608

Do you love Dog Man by Dav Pilkey? If you do, just so you know, I do too. Have you read every book in the series? Not me, but I think it’s a good book for these reasons:

  1. The book is good.
  2. It’s a good book to read.
  3. People love to read it.

Also did you know when the chief said, “HEY!” Do you think it’s funny? I do because he was kind of yelling at the people.

Have you seen Dog Man Unleashed? It is the next book in the series. I would recommend this book for kids and teenagers ages 7-19.


Second grade students at Glenridge Elementary School (Missouri, USA) are guest reviewers at Alphabet Soup. Click here if you’d like to read more book reviews by Glenridge Elementary School. To send us YOUR book review, check out our submission guidelines. Happy reading!

Posted in book reviews, Book reviews by kids, Glenridge Elementary School

Book review: THE BAD GUYS

THE BAD GUYS: EPISODE 1 by Aaron Blabey.REVIEWED BY BECKETT, SECOND GRADE, MISSOURI, USA

The Bad Guys, written & illustrated by Aaron Blabey, Scholastic Australia, ISBN 9781760150426

If you like talking animals, you will like this series. It is called The Bad Guys by Aaron Blabey, and the characters are Piranha, Mr Shark, Legs, Mr Snake, and Wolfie. They saved 10,000 chickens from a hamster. In book 6 you will find out that the hamster is an alien with 6 butts and 3 mouths, and he turned every cat into a zombie kitten. Then he made a cute-zilla ray and turned every dog, bunny, pony, and dolphin into a zog, zunny, zony, or zolphin.

I rate this book 5 stars out of 5 stars.  This book is good for ages 3–10.


Second grade students at Glenridge Elementary School (Missouri, USA) are guest reviewers at Alphabet Soup this month. Click here if you’d like to read more book reviews by Glenridge Elementary School. To send us YOUR book review, check out our submission guidelines. Happy reading!

Posted in book reviews, Book reviews by kids, Oxley Christian College

Book review: Do Not Lick This Book

Do Not Lick this Book by Idan Ben-Barak and Julian Frost. Image: Picture book with a yellow cover. The title DO NOT LICK THIS BOOK is within a white speech bubble, text is being spoken by some tiny germ characters on the front cover. REVIEWED BY WEYLEN, 8, VIC

Do not lick this book by Idan Ben-Barak and Julian Frost, Allen& Unwin, ISBN 9781760293055

Weylen borrowed a copy of this book from her school library.

This is an impressive book about different germs and what they do. Find out which germs help us and which germs don’t.

Take Min on an awesome adventure and join her too! Meet all her new friends and find out what she discovers at different places.

My favourite part is when Min finds out what all her microbe friends do.

I recommend this book to children 7-9yrs old who want to become doctors so they know what kind of germs there are.

I give this a 7 out of 10 rating because some pages were easy to understand and others were challenging.


If you’d like to read more book reviews by Oxley Christian College students, you can click on ‘Oxley Christian College’ 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, Book reviews by kids

Book review: The Hole Story

REVIEWED BY REUBEN, 4, WA

The Hole Story written and illustrated by Kelly Canby

The Hole Story by Kelly Canby, Fremantle Press, ISBN 9781925591125

Reuben reviewed his own copy of this book.

Charlie finds a hole and puts it in his pocket and he puts it in his backpack, but everything falls out. So he goes to the shops to see who wants a hole, but they just don’t.

I love it. I’ve read it a lot. It’s funny.

Download The Hole Story activity sheet from the publisher’s website.


This is Reuben’s first review for Alphabet Soup. To send us YOUR story, poem, artwork or book review, check out our submission guidelines.

Happy reading!