My Little Story Corner

For the love of picture books


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Christmas Favourites for all your Festive Needs

YoU woN’T BE poOr fOR CHoIcE tHiS CHriStMAs!

The Festive Season is here! With the holidays upon us, your little jolly jumpers will certainly need some inspiration and a touch of magic to enjoy this special time with loved ones. Below are some beautiful picture books you might like to share together, and plenty of craft activities to reinforce these magical traditions. Enjoy!

Click

on the book

for details. 

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🎁🎁🎁🎁🎁🎁🎁

Click on the image to find an assortment of craft goodies for Christmas and Chanukah!

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Have yourself a booktacular Christmas, Chanukah and New Year!

Look forward to sharing more bookish fun and new ideas in 2016!

love Romi

x 🎅🎄🎁 x

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What Do You Wish For? Book Launch

imageWhat Do You Wish For?, Jane Godwin (author), Anna Walker (illus.), Penguin Random House, October 2015.
Book Launch October 11, 2015 at Readings Hawthorn.

“All the children in the street are writing down a special Christmas wish.
But What is Ruby’s wish? What does she wish for at Christmas time?
Ruby thinks of all the things that make Christmas special…”

“From this much-loved creative partnership comes a sparkling and beautiful story, full of the wonder of Christmas, the magic of wishing, and the timeless dreams of a child.”

I chose well considering it was the first book launch that I’ve attended! Although, in the company of two of Australia’s most elite book creators I was slightly overwhelmed. It’s true, I have met the superlative Anna Walker previously at her Mr Huff Exhibition (read about it here), and she is utterly divine, but still…

From the beginning of the event, the mood at Readings Hawthorn was spirited and amiable, as people mingled and nibbled on the gorgeous, handmade Christmas-themed cupcakes and shortbread bikkies.
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Miss 5 enjoying a cupcake.

Miss 5 enjoying a cupcake.

Then came the speeches. Launching the book was author and friend to Jane Godwin, Davina Bell. With the already jovial atmosphere present, Davina’s speech set off even more warm and fuzzies with her beautifully heartfelt words about what the story, and her own little Christmassy moments, meant to her. She was also engaging and funny; a perfect combination.

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Jane’s emotional presentation stole the crowd’s hearts from the get-go. She, too, spoke about the meaning behind the story – that a ‘wish’ signifies more of a statement or fear of loss, and her intention is for readers to understand that this time of year is, and should be, one of gratitude. She proceeded with some special thank-you’s; fitting, considering the nature of the book.

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Anna relayed the loving message by expressing her own fond feelings at Christmas time. She quoted a couple of lines from the book – “Ruby looked up, and the whole world was sparkling. She heard the paper wishes rustle in the warm, night-time breeze.” She reminisced about listening to cicadas and enjoying the tree, and complimented Jane’s words for making her heart glow.

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A story and question time by Jane gave the children in the audience opportunities to share their own special wishes, and the event concluded with book signing and a valuable, brief moment to converse with the extraordinary pair.
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So, a successful book launch! Jane Godwin and Anna Walker truly are champions in their field. Together they have created five sublime picture books, but today, they masterfully worked the crowd! There was so much love and warmth in the air that it felt like everyone’s Christmases had come at once.

What Do You Wish For? available for purchase here.

More photos:

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Written and photographed by Romi Sharp.
© My Little Story Corner 2015.
www.facebook.com/mylittlestorycorner


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Books for Dad 2015

What makes your Dad / Granddad (or other special person) so special? What are your favourite things to do together? What important life lessons has he taught you? These are just a few picture books (trust me, there are heaps more!) that are perfect to celebrate all the special fathers and grandfathers this Father’s Day.

imageFearless With Dad, Cori Brooke (author), Giuseppe Poli (illus.), New Frontier Publishing, 2015.

What a joyous celebration of the relationship between a boy and his Dad. Whether they’re real or imagined, the possibilities for adventure are unlimited. Enthusiastic, optimistic and brave, this little boy doesn’t hold back, as long as his dad is with him. Riding big waves, kicking goals, moon travel and fast cars, discovering how to be a builder, chef, rock star and superhero, through good times and bad, Dad is always there. I love the heartwarming and positive feel of the text along with the variety and vivacious illustrations that make this book so endearing.

imageTime for Bed, Daddy, Dave Hackett (author, illus.), UQP, 2015.

It’s a role reversal of the hilarious kind. Coercing Daddy in to the bedtime routine is no easy feat for one little girl. She manages to help Daddy take a bath, put pyjamas on, and clean his teeth, but that’s when the fun and games start. In typical child-like behaviour, Daddy prolongs bedtime with a few more requests; horsey rides, checking for monsters, a story and songs, and finally one last snuggle. It’s enough to exhaust any little person! Extremely sweet, completely comical, utterly eye-catching cartoonesque pictures…it’s a winner.

imageDaddy, You’re Awesome, Laine Mitchell (author), Renée Treml (illus.), Scholastic Australia, 2015.

A gorgeous line up of baby animals forming special bonds with their daddies in playful ventures. Puppies chasing balls, bunnies building treehouses, owls spying bugs and monkeys racing bikes with their fathers, just to name a few. Written in fun rhyming couplets, each completed with the phrase, ‘Daddy, you’re awesome to me.’, and complimented with vibrant and adorable illustrations. Too sweet!

imageFly-In Fly-Out Dad, Sally Murphy (author), Janine Dawson (illus.), The Five Mile Press, 2015.

Dads can be superheroes in whatever shape or form, even if only to their children. For this young boy, life with dad may only be seldom, but when he’s home it is never boring. Dad is a Fly-in Fly-out dad, with a truck full of adventure stories to tell. But the little boy has his own stories to tell, too. When he’s home, we see a hands-on Dad helping with routines, involved in sporting events and taking the kids to the playground. I love all the little details, both in the text and the illustrations, that give this Dad and his family unique qualities. A very special, heartwarming story, particularly significant for those living with a FIFO Dad.

imageDaddy Cuddle, Kate Mayes (author), Sara Acton (illus.), ABC Books, 2015.

This is truly a book to treasure. It’s such a sweet story of an over-zealous early riser eager to wake Daddy for a play. In typical toddler language, the little bunny suggests every toy and accessory found to its blissfully unaware, snoring father. After a small outburst, bunny finally gets the affection and attention required. The ending is completely adorable; definitely a photo-worthy moment.

imageDaddies Are Great!, Meredith Costain (author), Polona Lovsin (illus.), Scholastic Australia, 2015.

Dog lovers will adore this book with its range of breeds enjoying quality moments with their pups; licking, swinging, climbing, digging, and cuddling. Special relationships are formed when daddies are caring, thoughtful, and loving. With beautifully soft and playful illustrations, this book is perfect for sharing intimate moments with your own pup on Father’s Day.

imageLucas and Jack, Ellie Royce (author), Andrew McLean (illus.), Working Title Press, 2014.

Powerful, evocative and intriguing. Jack, an elderly resident at the aged care home, inspires young Lucas to conceptualise the rich pasts of other people in the facility. Lucas always believed visiting his Great Grandpop was boring, but with a newfound glimpse into his childhood, Lucas becomes keen to bond with his great-grandfather and discover more about his fascinating story. With beautifully gentle and nostalgic illustrations, this book represents the importance of encouraging and celebrating meaningful memories and connections with our ageing relatives.
Interview with author Ellie Royce here.

imageMy Dad Thinks He’s Funny (2012), and My Dad Still Thinks He’s Funny (2013), Katrina Germein (author), Tom Jellett (illus.), Black Dog Books.

A hilarious, eye-rolling, side-splitting collection of ‘Dad jokes’ told from the perspective of the son, with bold, comical, retro-style illustrations.

Check out teaching notes / Father’s Day activities for My Dad Still Thinks He’s Funny on the website and on Pinterest

imageWhat’s Dad Doing?, Susan Hall (author), Cheryl Westerberg (illus.), National Library of Australia, 2013.

Gloriously interactive with its page-turning story, energetic illustrations and lift-the-flap fun, this book will keep you entertained. Pat Possum is looking for his Dad. When assuming he is involved in a typically-male oriented activity, we are pleasantly surprised when under the flap Dad is doing ‘motherly’ things. Rather than watching TV, Dad is bottle feeding the baby. He’s not mending something in the shed, he’s having a cuppa with Grandma. Some more housekeeping chores are done before Pat can finally play a rough-and-tumble game of footy with Dad. Complete with some possum facts in the back, this is an interesting look at parenting roles that families can relate to.

imageMy Dad’s the Coolest, Rosie Smith (author), Bruce Whatley (illus.), Scholastic Press, 2012.

This one’s a classic simply because how totally adorable and relatable it is. A range of animal babies tell us why their dad is the coolest. The author has used child-friendly language and human behaviours, which have brilliantly been matched to an animal. “…makes me laugh.” identifies with a clown nose-wearing puffer fish. “…and clever too.” represents a Einstein-like owl with glasses. There are strong rhinos, sandpit-digging moles, and hide-and-seek expert chameleons. Each spread beautifully illustrated and dedicated to each father, this book is humorous, lively and heartwarming.

imageMy Aussie Dad, Yvonne Morrison (author), Gus Gordon (illus.), Scholastic Australia, 2010.

Containing all the wonderful nuances that make Dad, the typical Aussie Dad. Different fathers are featured doing culturally appropriate dad things, even though they don’t do them quite so well. We see a Dad as a classy bloke in his stubby shorts and thongs, belting out songs in the supermarket. One Dad plays cricket on the beach, only to have the ball whack him on the nose. There are Dads who burn snags on the barbie, embarrassing Dads at footy matches, and Dads with very ordinary handyman skills. Hilariously entertaining, both in the text and the illustrations. But totally loveable!

imageI Love My Dad, Anna Walker (author, illus.), Scholastic Press, 2009.

Typically gorgeous gentle, watercolour illustrations by Anna Walker, with an equally tender rhyming story of Ollie and his loving relationship with his dad. A bit of baking, and some outdoor play, wrapping up with a piggyback ride to bed. This is one to keep; a must read for all the special days spent with dad.

Find some other Dad titles in the image grids below!
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Happy Father’s Day!

All books listed here can be purchased through Australia’s leading online bookstore, Boomerang Books. My Little Story Corner is not sponsored by Boomerang Books, only endorsed for a small percentage through affiliate links. These assist with the up-keep of the website and being able to provide free educational resources by a qualified teacher. Thanks!


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Visiting Mr Huff and his creator, Anna Walker.

Just like her picture books, Anna Walker is sweet, gentle and thoughtful, and as well as being down-to-earth, she’s also exceptionally gifted. Meeting her at her Mr Huff Exhibition at the gallery in Melbourne’s CBD was like a dream becoming reality. Her books are well-loved and highly treasured in our household, and for so long I have longed to make contact but didn’t have the courage.

  
But now I’ve done it! Face-to-face! I felt like a brave little chicken being swept away with the excitement in the city!
Anna was simply delightful. She answered all my questions generously and politely, even the silly ones! And her work, well, you think it’s enchanting in the books? Yes. But even more so to view up close and personal! Just sublime. The amount of detail with individually cut and pasted floorboards, leaves, tiny characters all with their very unique personalities. The level of skill in her intricate watercolour paintings, etches and sketches, and miniature models is simply extraordinary.   

   
   
  
Backtrack a bit… This was the second attempt at making the trip into the city, but as it turned out, the weather was (slightly) better, and we (Miss 5 and I) had time to prepare a little gift for the talented author / illustrator (one of our faves), just to show how much we love her. With some prior planning, (and a little bit of help from me), Miss 5 drew and painted her favourite Anna Walker characters in what we thought turned out to be quite a whimsical piece.

  
The teacher in me was happy to see her drawing on her knowledge of various Walker tales and creating an innovative pictorial story. “Alfie is searching for Sharkie and he’s shouting so loud that he’s blowing Peggy away with the wind from his mouth!” (Can you spot Sharkie?!)
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But did Anna Walker like it? She certainly seemed impressed and complimented Miss 5 on her artistic skills.:)
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So, for a glorious half hour or so, we had Anna Walker and her magical ‘Mr Huff’ world all to ourselves (pretty much), feeling absolutely enchanted by her brilliant words and images. Wow! An experience to remember!  

Inside Scoop!

 Anna is currently working on a new story about a little girl on a ‘flowery’ kind of adventure! It sounds absolutely magical. Only to be released in two to three years, though. But her new ‘What Do You Wish For?’ Christmas book with Jane Godwin will be out soon! Yay!  

See more of Anna Walker and her books on her website.

Buy Mr Huff here (affiliate link).

Written and photographed by Romi Sharp, 2015.  


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Alfie’s Lost Sharkie: Teaching Notes

alfie-s-lost-sharkieAlfie’s Lost Sharkie, Anna Walker (author, illus.), Scholastic Press, 2015.  

Review

We just loved Alfie as he dawdled his way out of the house in ‘Hurry Up Alfie!’ (see review). Now we are excited to see him return, and this time he’s dawdling on his way to bed. But who can sleep when their favourite bedtime toy has gone missing?

Like in ‘Hurry Up Alfie!’, the story is once again relayed through the gentle, humorous, and all-too-familiar conversation between mum and child. Mum has to subtly coerce Alfie into following the night time routine as he searches for his toy, Sharkie.
”Let’s see if he’s in the bath.”
”He might be hiding in your pyjama drawer.”
”Have a look on the bookshelf, Alfie. It’s time for a story.”

Alfie finds himself in the oddest of situations, and whilst we might think that falling into the clothes drawer and mis-placed pyjamas on Steve McQueen the cat is hilarious, Alfie does not and is still determined to find his toy. But will Alfie’s strong-headed, independent mind see him succeed in his attempts to uncover Sharkie’s whereabouts, and perhaps put off bedtime for just a little longer?

Strong, loveable and totally relatable characters both for parents and children, and adorably warm, familiar and creative illustrations by Anna Walker make ‘Alfie’s Lost Sharkie’ yet another enchanting classic that preschoolers will want to read again and again.  

Discussion  

Before Reading:
Read (or re-read) ‘Hurry Up Alfie!’ to familiarise with the main characters; Alfie and his mum. What kind of words can you use to describe Alfie? (appearance, personality, likes, dislikes, etc).
Play a game of Hide ‘n Seek with a toy, placing it in a difficult location. Once found, ask the child how they felt when they couldn’t find the toy, and how they felt when they found it.
Look at the cover of ‘Alfie’s Lost Sharkie’. What can you tell about Alfie in the picture? Why do you think he might be looking for Sharkie? What is Sharkie? Have you ever lost your favourite toy? What did you do?  

During Reading:
Where do you think Sharkie is? What do you think Alfie has to do next to get ready for bed?  

After Reading:
Do you think Alfie’s mum was happy with him? Why or why not? Do you think Alfie really needed Sharkie for bedtime? Why? How do you think Sharkie ended up in Alfie’s bed?

Literacy  

Alfie’s Lost Sharkie Letter Matching Activity
Objective:
Recognise and match letters and sounds.

1. Complete the cut and paste activity sheet. Download Alfie’s Lost Sharkie Letter Match Sheet
2. Find and list other words that begin with ‘A’ for Alfie, or ‘Sh’ for Sharkie.
3. Hide a range of toys or objects around the house. Once found, ask the child to say the beginning sound, letter and the name of the toy. Any that begin with the same sounds can be grouped together.  
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Bedtime Routine Chart
Objectives:
Match pictures with corresponding word.
Sequence events in order.

1. Cut and paste picture to match the correct bedtime routine task. Eg. Toothbrush picture matches ‘brush teeth’ text.
2. Place each set in order of events from first to last. Eg. Bath first, lights out last.
3. Add your own night time task to the list. Follow the routine every night!
Download Bedtime routine chart.
Bedtime routine chart pic

Sift and Spell Literacy Game
Objective: Recognise sounds in words in correct order.

1. See the link for instruction details. http://www.whatdowedoallday.com/2009/12/sift-n-spell.html
2. Adapt the words to suit those related to ‘Alfie’s Lost Sharkie’.
3. For younger children write the whole word next to the picture (eg. shark), then ask the child to find each letter and match them with your word.
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Numeracy

‘Find Sharkie’ Number Recognition Game

Objectives:
Number recognition 1-10 (or 1-12, or 1-20).
Recognise and name colours.

Materials:
Dozen egg carton (alternatively use paper cups),
scissors,
paint,
paintbrush,
plasticine (or playdough / bluetac),
pencil.

Directions:
1. Make a small shark sculpture using playdough, plasticine or blue tac. Use the pencil to poke eyes and teeth. The shark must fit under an egg cup.
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2. Cut out egg cups individually. Decide on the number of egg cups depending on the level of the child.
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3. Paint each egg cup a different colour. Once dry, paint on the numbers 1 to 10 (or 12), one number per egg cup.
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4. Set them out ready to play!
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‘Find Sharkie’ Number Recognition Game – How to Play:
1. One person hides ‘Sharkie’ underneath one of the egg cups.
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2. The seeker must say a number and lift that corresponding number to see if ‘Sharkie’ is there. Continue until found. If there are multiple players, take turns.
3. Play more rounds by hiding ‘Sharkie’ in higher numbers, and add more numbered egg cups (up to 20) to increase difficulty.
4. Further increase difficulty by mixing up the numbers so that they are not in ascending order.
5. Alternate Games:
– Colour Recognition –
Play the game as above, but child must now say the number and the colour. Eg. ”Five, green”.
– One to one correspondence –
Make different sculptures (or balls) to match the number on the egg cup. Eg. Make three sculptures to match the ‘3’ egg cup, etc. Count them to reinforce number skills.
– Letter Recognition –
Play the ‘Find Sharkie’ game with letters written on the egg cups to play a Literacy game.

Science
Could Sharkie be in the bath?
Explore sinking and floating experiments with different objects found in nature.
Http://mynearestanddearest.com/sink-float-sensory-sink
Sink-or-Float-Sensory-Sink-with-Natural-and-Found-Objects
Digging for Sharkie.
Melt ice blocks with salt, and dig out your treasures! These have been made for Halloween, but you can freeze any small objects you wish.
http://happyhooligans.ca/salt-and-ice-experiment/  
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Art / Craft
Search for Sharkie with these great shark binoculars!
Http://www.pinkstripeysocks.com/2015/02/toilet-roll-shark-binoculars-kids-craft.html?m=1
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Make some cool shark tubes (or alternate with paper cups).
Http://www.thejoysofboys.com/valentine-boxes-for-boys  
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Free animal mask printables, including a crocodile and a shark!
Http://masketeers.com/media/masketeers-free-masks.pdf
Http://www.masketeers.com/printable-crocodile-mask.htm  
printable-crocodile-mask

Lessons and photography by Romi Sharp
All sourced resources have been credited.
These are for personal and classroom use only and not permitted for commercial use.
My Little Story Corner 2015
Www.facebook.com/mylittlestorycorner


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My Little Story Corner’s Favourites From 2014

I didn’t think I’d make a ‘best-of’ list this year, simply because there were just too many fantastic picture books to choose from. So, to make it easier on myself I enlisted the help of my recently-turned five year old daughter. What better critique can you get than an inquisitive preschooler (soon to be school girl)?

To give you an idea of how ‘experienced’ we are in the picture book department, my latest library record shows that we’ve borrowed a total of 257 children’s books in the year of 2014. Then there are the ones we’ve bought (which sadly doesn’t even come close to the borrowed figure, but let’s face it, noone can afford that!), plus the several books received from my wonderful literary magazine employers with whom I write reviews for. That’s ALOT of books!

So, of all the books we’ve managed to lay our hands and eyes upon, these are Miss 5’s top 12 picture books of 2014 (in titled alphabetical order)

Bza6SorCYAAMLHqDigby’s Moon Mission by Renee Price, illustrated by Anil Tortop (Tadaa Books, Dec 2014).

A popular book in our house, Digby’s Moon Mission is a humorous story of teamwork and diversity; of a curious boy who sets out to solve the mystery of the banana-thin moon. Exploring concepts such as rhyming words, the days of the week, and phases of the moon, the final surprise at the end was the point that had us enjoying this adventure to the moon again and again.

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go-to-sleep-jessie-Go To Sleep, Jessie! by Libby Gleeson, illustrated by Freya Blackwood (Little Hare, Nov 2014).

We’re huge fans of the Gleeson and Blackwood combination (as discovered after reading the gorgeous and emotive Banjo and Ruby Red, which also features in Go To Sleep, Jessie!). And the fact that Miss 5 also has a little sister made this book a real treasure in our household. Several anguishing attempts to settle baby Jessie to sleep seems like nothing will work. But in a heartwarming ending the girl narrator finds a way to give Jessie the comfort and love that she needed. Too sweet!

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hurry-up-alfieHurry Up, Alfie by Anna Walker (Scholastic, Sep 2014).

From another of our favourites, Anna Walker, author / illustrator of the loveable Peggy, this is a story we could both relate to. A young crocodile finds it difficult to focus on getting ready to go out when there are so many other distractions, and his agitated parent who is constantly reminding Alfie to get a wriggle on! A very cute and funny tale with whimsical, beautiful artwork by Anna Walker.

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mix-it-up-Mix it Up! by Herve Tullet (Chronicle Books, Sep 2014).

Not an Australian book but worth a mention. Miss 5 just loves the interactivity of this one, as we engage with the paints to splash, mix and transform from primary to secondary colours, and using light and shadow to create new shades. Fun, engaging and a clever way to learn about colours and colour mixing.

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oliverOliver and George by Peter Carnavas (New Frontier Publishing, Sep 2014).

Ok, so we love ALL of Peter Carnavas’ books! Hugely popular in our house were The Boy on the Page and The Important Things. Oliver and George is an adorably funny book about patience (or lack thereof) and friendship. Oliver is ready to play, but his bear friend George is busy reading. Oliver gets up to all sorts of antics to capture George’s attention, only to be faced with a surprising reaction each time. But will they ever be ready to play? We love how Peter promotes a love of books, and his illustrations are as always dramatic, expressive and sweet.

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22735715Pig the Pug by Aaron Blabey (Scholastic, July 2014).

Another one from the talented Aaron Blabey, with his sick sense of humour, author of the award-winning The Dreadful Fluff (which Miss 5 loved), and The Brothers Quibble. Pig the Pug is a totally hilarious story of an absolutely greedy and selfish Pug, more than unwilling to share his toys and food with his flatmate, Trevor the sausage dog. A book full of tantrums, name calling and bad tempers, Pig ends up getting his just desserts for his inexcusable behaviour, which turns out to be sweet for only one; Trevor. With matching expressive and comical illustrations, Pig the Pug is a must read!

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9781921504631Scary Night by Lesley Gibbes, illustrated by Stephen Michael King (Working Title Press, Jul 2014).

A humorous and curious tale of three characters; a Pig with a parcel, a Hare with a hat and a Cat with a cake, setting off on a mysterious adventure in the pale moonlight. What a BIG surprise we got when we discovered where they were tip-toe creeping to on that scary night! Lots of fun with a hint of bite! Perfect for Halloween!

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2014-12-31-10-40-36--970769686The Book With No Pictures by B.J. Novak (The Dial Press, Sep 2014).

Published overseas, this book seemed to become an overnight sensation, and certainly was for us. Brilliantly able to capture the attention of young ones around the world, and it contains absolutely no pictures! A hilarious book full of silly words and proposterous phrases, making the reader sound like a ridiculous singing monkey with a blueberry pizza head. Be prepared for many reads, over and over, and over.

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thegreatgardenmystery9780857984166The Great Garden Mystery by Renée Treml (Random House Australia, Sep 2014).

We definately couldn’t deny our admiration of Renée Treml’s art, quickly becoming fans of her previous books, One Very Tired Wombat and Colour for Curlews. In The Great Garden Mystery, a most intriguing case that has the animals in the patch in disarray. Who’s been eating all the beetroot in the night? As the animal detectives study every clue, each one asserts their innocence, until it is the roo that seems most suspicious. But will this mystery ever be solved? Who’s the one with the square-shaped poo? A fun rhyming story that will bring out the detective in all of us!

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tim-and-edTim and Ed by Ursula Dubosarsky, illustrated by Andrew Joyner (Penguin Australia, Oct 2014).

Tim and Ed are identical twin koalas. They look the same and do everything together. Until one day when they spend the night apart. Written in exuberant rhyme, with equally lively pictures, Tim and Ed is a fun story about learning independence and uniqueness, particularly when you are a twin.

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vanilla-ice-creamVanilla Ice Cream by Bob Graham (Candlewick Press, Aug 2014).

Following the breathtaking perspective that captured a moment in time in Silver Buttons (favourite from 2013), comes another magnificent story by legendary Bob Graham. A tale of cause and effect; how a little swallow bird from India gets carried away across the ocean on a shipping container, reaching its’ destination that is Melbourne, Australia. There, the bird unintentionally sets in motion a series of events that lead to a baby’s first, delectable taste of vanilla ice cream. Stunningly captured moments. Delicious!

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whale-in-the-bathWhale in the Bath by Kylie Westaway, illustrated by Tom Jellett (Allen & Unwin, Oct 2014).

A comical tale, with equally comical illustrations, of a splashing whale in Bruno’s bathtub. We laughed when the massive whale continues to tell Bruno to come back later, and poor Bruno gets accused of lying and avoiding his bath. We loved the ending when finally Bruno has his wash (with the help of the whale), and when someone else faces the same problem.

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Well, the child has spoken. These are her top 12 picks of picture books published in 2014. If I had done my own list there would be at least another 10 or so… just have a look around my website and you’ll find some more amazing books by great authors. Looking forward to discovering more talent in 2015!

Happy reading!

– Romi Sharp 🙂