'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Saturday, 8 January 2011

KBR Recommends Summer Reads: Junior Fiction Part II

Some wonderful books for younger readers were released during 2010 - here are some gorgeous books that will make for great reading over the summer holidays.

Throughout the hunt for the 39 Clues, Amy and Dan Cahill have uncovered history's greatest mysteries and their familiy's deadliest secrets. But are they ready to face the truth about the Cahills and the key to their unmatched power? After a whirlwind race that's taken them across five continents, Amy and Dan face the most difficult challenge yet -a task no Cahill dared to imagine.

When faced with a choice that could change the future of the world, can two kids succeed where 500 years worth famous ancestors failed?

Title: 39 Clues: Into the Gauntlet
Author: Margaret Peterson-Haddix
Publisher: Scholastic, $17.99 RRP
Publication Date: 2010
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9780545152969
For ages: 9+
Type: Novel

This book is available online


Harriet Bright is going to have the best holiday ever. As soon as:

one: She gets rid of the 6840 seconds that stand between her and Christmas
two: Her summer holiday friend Gracie Marshall is out of her life.
three: She saves Pluto from being dwarfed.
four: She and Melly Fanshawe star in the story of the very best holiday ever!

Until then, she's in a real hullabaloo.

Meet the clever and zany Harriet Bright – a poet (don't you know it) who will get into your head and whisk you away on adventures.

Title: Harriet Bright: Holiday Hullabaloo
Author: Claire Craig
Illustrator: Melanie Feddersen
Publisher: Puffin, $14.95 RRP
Publication Date: October 2010
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9780143305071
For ages: 8 - 12
Type: Novel

This book is available online


It's a pulse-pounding, post-apocalyptic, sci-fi adventure thriller that's not for the claustrophobic! Described as a cross between Lord of the Flies and The Hunger Games! When the doors of the lift crank open, the only thing Thomas remembers is his first name. But he's not alone. He's surrounded by boys who welcome him to the Glade, a walled encampment at the centre of a bizarre and terrible stone maze.

Like Thomas, the Gladers don't know why or how they came to be there-or what's happened to the world outside. All they know is that every morning when the walls slide back, they will risk everything-even the Grievers, half-machine, half-animal horror that patrol its corridors-to try and find out.

Title: The Maze Runner
Author: James Dashner
Publisher: Chicken House, $17.99 RRP
Publication Date: 2010
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781906427504
For ages: 9+
Type: Novel

This book is available online


'There is no real risk as long as you're careful,' Rodney said to Ruth. 'You'll have three chances to create your perfect life. If for some reason you don't like where you've ended up, you can return. But if you choose to stay longer than one day, you'll stay in your new life for ever.'

Ruth Craze thinks life can't get any worse. She fights with her brothers, her parents driver her mad and no one ever listens to her. So when Rodney the Rat suggests a way out, Ruth is ready to risk everything.

Three wishes. Three chances to create her perfect life.

A million ways to get it wrong.

Title: Careful What you Wish For
Author: Maureen McCarthy
Publisher: Allen and Unwin, $15.99 RRP
Publication Date: November 2010
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781741758573
For ages: 9 - 12
Type: Novel

This book is available online


Gripping fantasy adventure with larger-than-life characters and a world mapped in fascinating detail. Illustrated throughout by the author. Rossam nd has exchanged Winstermill and the dangerous life of a lamplighter for Brandenbrass and an even more dangerous life as factotum to the aristocratic monsterslayer, Europe. Fear and self-doubt must wait, however, as he plunges headlong into the fulgar's day-to-day life of political manoeuvring, high-society parties and well-paid monsterhunting.

But whispers and rumours about her new factotum place Europe herself in danger, and now Rossam nd and the Branden Rose will face the ultimate battle against their enemies, the black-hearted schemers who would destroy them both.

Title: Monster Blood Tattoo: Factotum
Author: D.M. Cornish
Publisher: Scholastic, $29.99 RRP
Publication Date: 2010
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781862916920
For ages: 9+
Type: Novel

This book is available online


When Eloise's get-rich-quick dad moves them back to his home town to turn the derelict family mansion into a convention centre, Eloise feels an immediate bond with the old house. She begins spending all her time there, ignoring her strange grandmother and avoiding the friendly boy next door.

Then Eloise meets a 'ghost girl' who may or may not be from the house's past, and events take a strange - and ultimately dangerous - turn. Beautifully written, poignant and gripping, this is a charming and atmospheric story of personal growth, overcoming grief and the true nature of friendship and family.

Title: Cicada Summer
Author: Kate Constable
Publisher: Allen and Unwin, $15.99 RRP
Publication Date: 2009
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781741758283
For ages: 8 - 12
Type: Novel

This book is available online


Whats in a name?

I, Emma Freke is a charming search-for-identity story about Emmathe only normal member of her quirky family. Her flighty, mom seems to barely have time for a daughter.

Emma's well-meaning grandpa is clueless. And her only friends are the local librarian and a precocious 10-year-old adopted by the two old ladies next door.

Title: I, Emma Freke
Author: Elizabeth Atkinson
Publisher: Carolrhoda Books, $33.95 RRP
Publication Date: August 2010
Format: Hard cover with dust jacket
ISBN: 9780761356042
For ages: 9 - 12
Type: Novel

This book is available online


Big Nate has got his heart set on leading his sports team to victory! But it won′t be easy. He′s stuck with Gina, his all time enemy and really rubbish player. Worse yet they have to work together on the class special project which means Gina′s allowed to call Nate - at home!

Gina is at the top of Nate′s list of ThingsI Can't Stand - but will she stand in the way of his greatness?

Will Nate win or lose? Pass or fail? Or fall asleep in science and end up in detention again?

Title: Big Nate Strikes Again
Author: Lincoln Peirce
Publisher: HarperCollins, $14.99 RRP
Publication Date: 1 November 2010
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9780007355174
For ages: 9+
Type: Junior Fiction

This book is available online

Mad scientist Godfrey Gunk had a dream - a dream of creating a whole safari park of monsters on an old rubbish dump. It didn't work. Little did Godfrey know that actually after he left the rubbish dump, his dream came true...

Meet the inhabitants of Trashland, a whole world of different types of slimy monsters who all live peacefully alongside each other - at least they used to...

When the superhero Slime Squad's all-seeing, all-knowing PIE begins to have his computer compenents stolen they set out to tackle the crinimals. Little do they know they're about to face a whole load of cyber-poos! It's time to fight crime with slime!

Title: Slime Squad: The Cyper-Poos
Author: Steve Cole
Publisher: HarperCollins, $7.95 RRP
Publication Date: 1 September 2010
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781862308787
For ages: 7 - 10
Type: Junior Fiction

This book is available online

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