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The Discombobulated Life of Summer Rain

The Discombobulated Life of Summer Rain   By Julie Lamb Submarine Paperback $25 Tomboy Rain (12) lives with Pop in his run-down shack, eating road-kill and chicken scraps. When Mrs Macy takes a shine to Pop, Rain tries to stop their romance. She also acts the fool to fit in at school, until popular Juanita tries […]

Their Great Gift: Courage, Sacrifice and Hope in a New Land

Their Great Gift: Courage, Sacrifice and Hope in a New Land By John Coy Photographs Wing Young Huie Carolrhoda Books Hardback $42.50 This is a thought-provoking picture book in these days when refugees are so much in the news. Told with minimal text, and photographs – some black and white, some colour – which tell […]

The House on the Hill

The House on the Hill By Kyle Mewburn Illustrations Sarah Davis Scholastic Hardback $27 This spooky tale, told in rhyme, includes some lovely sophisticated language and a refrain. It might be a bit scary for some, but those who like a thrill will enjoy the escalating tension as two ghosts approach, and then explore, the […]

Have You Seen Elephant?

Have You Seen Elephant? By David Barrow Gecko Press Paperback $19.99 Hardback $29.99 A boy and Elephant decide to play hide-and-seek, which Elephant warns he is very good at. And so it would seem…he’s the “elephant in the room” in every situation, apparently unseen by the picture book characters, while the viewer can clearly see […]


Crenshaw By Katherine Applegate Harper Collins $16.99 Crenshaw is a giant cat who wears a baseball cap and takes bubble baths. But the only person who can see him is 10-year-old Jackson, and maybe his dog Aretha. Jackson’s family is going through hard times; they’ve been homeless before and maybe it’s going to happen again. […]

The Bold Ship Phenomenal

The Bold Ship Phenomenal By Sarah Johnson Illustrations Deborah Hinde Flat Bed Press, $20 Life is dull for Malachi (11) after his mother’s death: Dad just stays at home being boring. Things change after Malachi finds a ship in a bottle. News about an eco-protest prompts Malachi to see for himself, stowing away on a […]


Magrit By Lee Battersby Walker Books, $22.99 Magrit is nearly 10. She lives in an abandoned cemetery and her only friend and advisor is Master Puppet, a skeletal creature she built who sits overlooking the graveyard. When a baby is dropped in the graveyard Magrit cares for him, but what will happen when he wants […]

Raymie Nightingale

Raymie Nightingale By Kate DiCamillo Candlewick Press $22.99 Ten-year-old Raymie’s father has run off with a dental hygienist, but she has a plan to lure him back – become Little Miss Central Florida Tire and when her father sees her photo in the paper he’ll return. In preparation, she and two friends are learning to […]