Posted in book reviews, Book reviews by kids, Book reviews by Matilda

Book review: How to make small things with Violet Mackerel

How to make small things with Violet Mackerel by Anna Branford, ill. Sarah Davis, photography by Cath Muscat, ISBN 9781922179401, Walker Books Australia

how to make small things

 

REVIEWED BY MATILDA, 8, WA

Matilda borrowed this book from her local library.

When I saw this book I got really, really excited because it’s based on the small things that Violet Mackerel likes to make and it tells you how to make them yourself. My favourite thing in the book is the leaf necklace with a secret pocket.

It gives you very good instructions for how to make everything. I wanted to make the shining sun ring except I don’t have a darning needle yet. But I made some of the other things like a wrist warmer and I made my Mum one of the pouches for a Mother’s Day present and she loved it. I also made one of the matchbox drawers, it was really cool. I also made a seasonal pencil topper, dangling day-counter using butterflies, and the notebook.

My favourite thing I made from the book was the pouch.

Ages 6+ will like this book. You should read it if you like small things and if you’d like to know more things about Violet Mackerel.

Matilda is one of our regular book reviewers. Her most recent review (if you don’t count this one) was of Violet Mackerel’s Helpful Suggestion. If YOU would like to send us a book review, check out our submission guidelines. Happy reading!

Posted in book reviews, Book reviews by kids, Book reviews by Matilda

Book review: Violet Mackerel’s Helpful Suggestion

Violet Mackerel’s Helpful Suggestion by Anna Branford, ill. Sarah Davis, ISBN 9781 922244369, Walker Books Australia

Violet Mackerel's Helpful suggestion

 

REVIEWED BY MATILDA, 8, WA

A review copy of this book was provided by the publisher.

Do you know Rose from Violet Mackerel’s Possible Friend and Violet Mackerel’s Pocket Protest? Rose is going to go to Japan for six weeks. Violet is excited as well as Rose but it’s a particular sort of excited. Violet has a bad feeling. What if Rose forgets about her?

I think this is a very good book to lead on from Violet Mackerel’s Pocket Protest. I learned some Japanese words and at the back the activity is ‘How to make your own set of flashcards’ and I think I might try to do that for my spelling words.

My favourite part about this book is that Violet learns the Japanese word for smile (egau) and then she uses the Japanese word instead of the English word when she is talking about smiles after that.

I really like the illustrations in the Violet Mackerel books because I like the style of drawing. There was one thing I was thinking about: it is interesting how on the front cover Violet looks older than she does in the illustrations inside the book.

This book is recommended by me for ages 6 to 9.

Matilda is one of our regular book reviewers. Her most recent review (if you don’t count this one) was of Our Australian Girl: Meet Ruby. If YOU would like to send us a book review, check out our submission guidelines. Happy reading!

Posted in book reviews, Book reviews by kids, Book reviews by Matilda

Book review – Our Australian Girl: Meet Ruby

Meet Ruby by Penny Matthews, ill. Lucia Masciullo, Puffin Books, ISBN 9780143307426

meet ruby

REVIEWED BY MATILDA, 8, WA

Matilda borrowed this book from her local library.

Ruby is turning 12 and she lives in Adelaide in 1930. After her party, Ruby’s dad loses his job and they can’t afford to send her to her school anymore. They have to sell their house because they don’t have any money. Ruby is really worried. Her classmate’s family decides to buy Ruby’s house. Ruby doesn’t want Brenda to have her room and her bed. Will it all turn out all right?

I knew the Our Australian Girl series already because I’ve read the first two books in the ‘Grace’ series. Meet Ruby is just after a war so it was a different sort of life from mine. I thought it was interesting and full of action. I am looking forward to reading the next book in the Ruby series.

There was a quiz at the back of the book which helps you decide which Our Australian Girl character you are most like. I was most like Alice from the Alice series and my Mum and brother and sister were most like Rose. I haven’t read the Alice series yet. It’s set it 1918. I also want to read the Lina series set in 1956.

Girls aged 7 to 10 would like these books because they are full of adventure and hopefulness.

Matilda is one of our regular book reviewers. Her most recent review (if you don’t count this one) was of The Princess and the Goblin. If YOU would like to send us a book review, check out our submission guidelines. Happy reading!

Posted in book reviews, Book reviews by kids, Book reviews by Matilda

Book review: The Princess and the Goblin

The Princess and the Goblin by George MacDonald, ill. Arthur Hughes, ISBN 9780141332482, Puffin Books (Penguin Group)

the princess and the goblin

REVIEWED BY MATILDA, 8, WA

Matilda borrowed this book from her local library.

A princess named Irene has a nurse who doesn’t let her go out after dark because she’s afraid the goblins will get Irene. Irene goes up a mysterious staircase and there is a woman at the top of the stair — her great-great grandma. But only Irene knows she’s there. This is an adventure story and it’s a bit like a fairytale with magic inside.

I loved this book because it got more exciting every night I read a chapter. I liked that Irene was 8 like me. There’s a picture at the start of most chapters and they made me think of the olden days.

It’s a very, very, very, very, very, very old story because it was first published in 1872. I’m looking forward to reading the next book in the series which is The Princess and Curdie.

I think 7 year olds to forever on would enjoy this book.

Matilda is one of our regular book reviewers. Her most recent review (if you don’t count this one) was of Annie’s Snails. If YOU would like to send us a book review, check out our submission guidelines. Happy reading!

Posted in book reviews, Book reviews by kids, Book reviews by Matilda

Book review: Anton Can Do Magic

Anton Can Do Magic by Ole Könnecke, ISBN 9781877467639, Gecko Press

Reviewed by Matilda, 7, WA

Anton Can Do Magic

Anton is a boy with a hat that he thinks helps him be magic. He tries to make things disappear. Whenever he does magic, he wiggles his hands and the hat falls over his eyes and he can’t see what’s happening, so he thinks he’s done something magic.

Something interesting about the illustrations is that they use mostly hot colours like red, orange and yellow and reddy-orange. Only the bird is not orangey-red.

Can Anton really do magic? You will have to read this picture book to find out.

I would recommend this book to 5 to 8 year olds because it’s funny and it made me laugh.

Matilda is one of our regular Junior Book Reviewers. She previously reviewed: An Aussie Year. If YOU would like to send us a book review,check out our submission guidelines. Happy reading!

Posted in authors, Events, illustrator, teachers' resources, what we're reading

Happy Roald Dahl Day!

September 13th is Roald Dahl Day!

"Matilda by Roald Dahl"I loved reading his books when I was growing up, and I’m still reading them. Now my kids are reading them—my daughter really likes Matilda.

I can’t imagine Roald Dahl’s stories without Quentin Blake’s illustrations. (There should be a Quentin Blake Day, too. While we’re waiting for someone to organise that, you can check out Quentin Blake’s fantabulous website.)

Anyway, back to Roald Dahl. Here’s something you didn’t know about me. When I was about 11, I used to correct people who thought Roald Dahl’s name was RONALD Dahl. They never believed me. (I was quite bossy about it but they didn’t know anyone else called Roald, so they thought I had it wrong. Ha!)

"Revolting Rhymes cover"Then, when I was 15, I had to learn a poem off by heart to recite in front of the class. I was very slack and I didn’t think about the assignment again until three days before the recital. In a bit of a panic,  I borrowed Roald Dahl’s Revolting Rhymes from the library and I spent two nights frantically learning ‘Jack and the Beanstalk.’ It was fun and actually not too hard to memorise (even though it’s quite long) because of the rhymes and the way the story unfolds. And because, when you have someone listening to you reciting it (and they don’t have the book in front of them, so they can’t read ahead) you can’t wait to get to the funny bits!

I can’t remember what anyone else’s poems were about but I can still recite big chunks of Jack. If you haven’t read Revolting Rhymes yet, find a copy immediately. (If you can’t buy your own, ask for it at your school library or your local library.)

Visit the official Roald Dahl Day site for a free PDF with Roald Dahl Day activities. You could have a Roald Dahl Party to celebrate your favourite books any day, of course. It doesn’t have to be 13 September!

Here’s my favourite Roald Dahl Book. What’s yours?

"The BFG by Roald Dahl"

~ Rebecca Newman, Editor,  Alphabet Soup