Friday, 29 June 2018

Children's Chapter Book Review: Bad Nana - Older Not Wiser by Sophy Henn 

This is the first book in an exciting new series for young readers (aged 6 years +).
Jeanie is aged almost 8 years old.
She has a bad nana - not bad like a monster or gangster, more like a nana that loves getting into mischief (and enjoying herself immensely in the process!) 
She is often embarrassing but makes no apologies for her behaviour. 
Jeanie's dad says that nana should know better than to behave the way she does, but Jeanie is glad that nana doesn't!

The illustrations in this chapter book are gorgeous, hues of neon pink against black and white, and a stunning bold cover too.
My 10 year-old thoroughly enjoyed this book.

Bad Nana, Older Not Wiser is out this June through Harper Collins Australia and has an RRP of $17.99

Thursday, 28 June 2018

Lego Star Wars: Choose Your Path (DK Books)

In Lego Star Wars, the reader gets to choose where to go and what adventure to take!
Opt from one of three starting points (Hunt The Sith, Fight The Empire or Defeat The First Order), and journey through the Lego Star Wars galaxy.

There are heaps of Lego Star Wars facts to discover, and then you will be given two options for where to journey next. Some of the choices will lead to endings, but be warned, some endings are better than others!
There are over 40 different endings in the book, and many fun facts to learn.
When you reach an ending it is entirely up to you where you would like to go to next. You are in control!
The book includes a U-3PO Droid mini figure to keep and collect. 
Choose Your Path is a must have for any Lego Star Wars fan!

It is available now through Penguin Random House Australia. It has an RRP of $29.99
For further information on this title, head here 

Monday, 25 June 2018

Book Review The Love That I Have by James Moloney

This story is set during WWII in Germany, and the main character is sixteen year old Margot Baumann.
She has recently left school to take her older sister Renate's job in the mailing room of Sachsenhausen, a concentration camp near Berlin.

Margot is grateful that she has no contact with the prisoners in the camp, especially as her favourite brother Walther has been taken prisoner at Stalingrad, and she doesn't want to imagine the suffering he is going through, like the brutality that is forced upon those at Sachsenhausen. 

In the mail room, she is kept busy on her feet, and is shocked when one day she is ordered to burn the prisoners' mail.
She can't bear knowing that the letters written by the prisoners will go unread.
And so, in a daring act of bravery, she secretly goes against the rules and steals a few of the letters and takes them home. She sends a few of them on to the recipients, but quickly finds herself drawn into their letters of desperation, sadness, love, and hope. 
One particular prisoner, Dieter Kleinschmidt, writes with such passion and honesty that Margot finds that she must know more about this man.
And when she discovers that his girlfriend's name is also Margot, she feels as though the letters of love are being written just for her.
She makes it her duty to meet Dieter, and to help him in any way she can, but what will happen if anyone finds out about her plan?

This is a very touching story that focuses on the power of love in the direst of circumstances. 
Like many other wartime novels, it is steeped in sadness, but there is also the beauty of hope threaded through it.
The Love That I Have is available this June through Harper Collins, and has an RRP of AU$27.99

Wednesday, 20 June 2018

Lonely Planet Kids Book Range

I was fortunate enough to recently receive a package of great books from the lovely people at Lonely Planet Kids.
The books in the range aim to inspire and encourage young readers to learn about the world they live in. 
My two younger daughters have had a great time learning about geography, nature, history, space, and more, and the books have provided them with hours of entertainment.


The 'Let's Explore' range contain colouring in pages, lots of stickers, and puzzles too. The books are aimed at children aged between 5-8 years old. 
The topics include: City, Jungle, Ocean, Desert and Mountain.

The My Holiday Scrapbook allows children to collect special mementos (including photos and postcards) from their holidays and store them in the pouch provided in the book. 

The new released title, Around The World Fashion Sketchbook, is a book which takes your young reader on a journey of style and fashion from many cultures across the globe. The book has plenty of space for your child to get creative and design their own outfits.
These are just a few of the extensive range of books on offer from Lonely Planet Kids.

All of the books in the Lonely Planet Kids range are very reasonably priced, and the books are shipped within a day or two of ordering. 

For further information on these books, head to:

Tuesday, 12 June 2018

 Children's Book Review: Bush And Beyond - Stories From The Country

This book is aimed at junior readers and features four different Indigenous stories - Bush Secrets, Yipee! Summer Holidays, Barlay!, and Lucky Thamu.
The tales share exciting, joyous and even frightening times discovering things in the bush and beyond. 
This book compliments other titles released previously through Fremantle Press: Cyclones And Shadows, and Eagle, Crow And Emu. It features black and white line drawings by illustrator Tracey Gibbs.
It has an RRP of $14.99 
For further information on this title, head here

Thursday, 7 June 2018

Beauty & Lace Book Club Review: The Paris Seamstress by Natasha Lester 

I adore Natasha Lester! Her writing style is exquisite. 
I've read all of her books, and even though historical fiction is not my favourite genre, Natasha's stories captivate me every time, making it a genre that I now have a greater interest in.

In The Paris Seamstress, the story begins with Estella Bissette, a young seamstress living in Paris with her mother in 1940. As the Germans advance, her mother arranges for Estella to leave France and head to Manhattan with nothing more than a suitcase, a sewing machine and the dream of owning her own atelier one day.
She meets a young man named Sam on the journey to America, and the two form a friendship, especially as Sam also shares a love of fashion, as he is a fabric cutter.
Upon arriving in Manhattan, Estella meets Janie, a stunning blonde model from Australia. The two live together and along with Sam, they plan to open their own fashion house.

The story then introduces us to Fabienne Bissette. The year is 2015, and Fabienne is an Australian curator who attends the Met Gala to witness an exhibition of her dearly beloved grandmother Estella's work. 
But as she finds out more about her grandmother's past, Fabienne discovers that Estella had to face many tribulations and make many sacrifices in her life.
The story unravels slowly, with the two main characters (Estella and Fabienne) sharing their stories in alternating chapters, spanning generations, until the reader discovers how things play out late in the story. 

I loved reading about the fashion industry, and both Estella and Fabienne were strong-willed and courageous women. 
I'd happily recommend this book to those with a love of fashion and historical fiction.
Thank you to Beauty & Lace and Hachette Australia for the opportunity to add this to my book collection.

Sunday, 3 June 2018

Beauty & Lace Book Review: The Art Of Friendship by Lisa Ireland 

When 11 year-old Libby moves to Woodvale in Melbourne with her parents, she is nervous about what life will be like for her  now. Having left behind their farm, the Talbots are hoping to start afresh in the suburbs. When Libby meets Kit, a girl her age in the new neighbourhood, it isn't long before the two are firm friends.
Fast forward to the present day when the ladies are now approaching their 40th birthdays..
Libby lives in Sydney with her husband Cam, and is a stay-home mum to their teen son Harry, whilst Kit is single and still resides in Melbourne.
The two women are still close, despite the distance and the different roads they have travelled. Kit is Harry's godmother, and spends every Christmas with Libby and her family. The two women chat and email each other regularly too.
When Libby finds out that Cam has been promoted and they will be making the move back to Melbourne, both Libby and Kit are thrilled with the news.
But their friendship is put to the test when Libby finds herself making friends with Cam's colleague's wives, and trying to fit in with their rather posh lifestyle.
The book explores whether Libby and Kit's friendship can withstand the test of time, and explores their differences in detail.
I thoroughly enjoyed this novel. I felt that the two main female characters were very real; each had their flaws and although I liked both of them, I admired Kit more as she remained true to herself and stood up for what she believed in. I felt she was more easy-going and had more integrity out of the two.
I enjoyed the sections in the book that shared their younger years; I actually would've liked more, but having said that, the story did flow well and I felt that the reader is able to gain a good understanding of Libby and Kit's friendship as it developed over the years. 
I liked how the book ended, it actually wasn't what I was expecting, and it seemed a realistic outcome.

I would gladly recommend this book as it was an enjoyable and easy read. Thanks to Beauty & Lace and Pan Macmillan for the opportunity to read and review!

To see my review on the Beauty & Lace website, head here 

The Art Of Friendship has an RRP of $29.99