Jackie’s Quick Picture Book Overview

Reviews first appeared in PASS IT ON – issue 636 Monday 17th July 2017
TITLE Busting
AUTHOR Aaron Blabey
ILLUSTRATOR Aaron Blabey
PUBLISHER Scholastic
ISBN 9781743812389
THEMES Needing the toilet. Funny.
AGE GROUP 3+ years
RHYME Yes
JACKIE’S RATING /10 9/10
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Hilarious. Brilliant. Love it I do.
TITLE The Fabulous Friend Machine
AUTHOR Nick Bland
ILLUSTRATOR Nick Bland
PUBLISHER Scholastic
ISBN 9781760277659
THEMES Friendship; technology; loyalty; deception
AGE GROUP  4 – 7 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8.5/10
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Perfect for helping our youngsters to start to understand the traps associated with all our technological devices.
TITLE I Love you
AUTHOR Xiao Mao
ILLUSTRATOR Tang Yun
PUBLISHER New Frontier Publishing
ISBN 9781925059762
THEMES Love; multiculturalism; How to say ‘I love you’ in different languages.
AGE GROUP 2+ years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8/10
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Sweet little badger, no matter what the language, loves everything and tells it so.
TITLE Eric Finds a Way
AUTHOR Robert Vescio
ILLUSTRATOR Ann-Marie Finn
PUBLISHER Wombat Books
ISBN  9781925563030
THEMES Books; stories; adventures; drawing; trying; self doubt; perseverance; imagination
AGE GROUP 3+ years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 7.5/10
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Eric loves books and where they can take him. He tries to write and draw but finds his real passion out in his own back yard.
TITLE I Want to be in a Book
AUTHOR Narelle Oliver
ILLUSTRATOR Narelle Oliver
PUBLISHER Scholastic
ISBN 9781743811634
THEMES Books; hope; illustration; imagination
AGE GROUP 3+ years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8.5/10
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS How a character might feel before they’ve been written into a story book. Told through the eyes of Cecil.
TITLE I Just Ate my Friend
AUTHOR Heidi McKinnon
ILLUSTRATOR Heidi McKinnon
PUBLISHER Allen and Unwin
ISBN 9781760294342
THEMES Friendship; loneliness; instinct
AGE GROUP 2 – 5 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8/10
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Simple and very funny with a cute twist.
Reviews first appeared in PASS IT ON – issue 635 Monday 10th July 2017
TITLE This is Banjo Paterson
AUTHOR Tania McCartney
ILLUSTRATOR Christina Booth
PUBLISHER NLA Publishing
ISBN 9780642278982
THEMES Banjo Paterson; poetry; rhyme; doing what you love; Australian history
AGE GROUP 4+ years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8/10
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Tania and Christina have done a wonderful job capturing the life of Banjo Paterson in a really accessible way for children. Includes snippets from The Snowy River Times, along with photographs and poetry excerpts.
TITLE The Very Sleepy Bear
AUTHOR Nick Bland
ILLUSTRATOR Nick Bland
PUBLISHER Scholastic
ISBN 9781743812549
THEMES Deception; hibernation; flattery
AGE GROUP  3+ years
RHYME Yes
JACKIE’S RATING /10 9.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Brilliant meter! Hilarious. What more can I say.
TITLE Penelope the Mountain Pygmy Possum
AUTHOR Gordon Winch
ILLUSTRATOR Stephen Pym
PUBLISHER New Frontier Publishing
ISBN 9781925059595
THEMES Australian Animals; Snowy Mountains; extinction; preservation
AGE GROUP 4 – 8 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8/10
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Did you know that at ‘tunnel of love’ was built under the road to help the male possums return to their mates? Neither did I! What a wonderful idea.
TITLE Little Wing
AUTHOR Katherine Battersby
ILLUSTRATOR Katherine Battersby
PUBLISHER University of Queensland Press
ISBN  9780702254000
THEMES Reading; learning; learning the difference between theory and practise and individual thought; loneliness
AGE GROUP 3+ years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8/10
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS It’s no good being smart if you’ve no one to share your life with.
TITLE Gus Dog goes to Work
AUTHOR Rachel Flynn
ILLUSTRATOR Craig Smith
PUBLISHER Working Title Press
ISBN 9781921504884
THEMES Dogs; dog habits;
AGE GROUP 3+ years
RHYME Yes
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8.5/10
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Dog lovers will love this. Gus is adorable, so curious and so helpful and he even understands English.
TITLE Zelda’s Big Adventure
AUTHOR Marie Alafaci
ILLUSTRATOR Shane McG
PUBLISHER Allen and Unwin
ISBN 9781925266382
THEMES The Little Red Hen parody; perseverance; space travel
AGE GROUP 2 – 5 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8/10
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Follows a similar story line to the Little Red Hen with a subtle twist – her friends wanting to take credit for her space adventure even though they didn’t help one bit.
Reviews first appeared in PASS IT ON – issue 634 Monday 3rd July 2017
TITLE The Pocket Dogs and the Lost Kitten
AUTHOR Margaret Wild
ILLUSTRATOR Stephen Michael King
PUBLISHER Omnibus and imprint of Scholastic
ISBN 9781742991054
THEMES Animals; envy; insecurity; sharing; love
AGE GROUP 3-7 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 7.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Helping children understand that love is not a finite commodity.
TITLE Out
AUTHOR Angela May George
ILLUSTRATOR Owen Swan
PUBLISHER Scholastic
ISBN 9781743629000
THEMES Asylum seekers; courage; hardship; belonging
AGE GROUP 4-7 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 7.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Told through the eyes of a little girl – we get a glimpse into the life of an asylum seeker.
TITLE My Perfect Pup
AUTHOR Sue Walker
ILLUSTRATOR Anil Tortop
PUBLISHER New Frontier Publishing
ISBN 9781925059601
THEMES Puppies; perfect fit; expectations
AGE GROUP 3 – 6 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 7.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Sometimes perfection is not what it seems.
TITLE Little Bear’s First Sleep
AUTHOR Lesley Gibbes
ILLUSTRATOR Lisa Stewart
PUBLISHER Scholastic
ISBN  9781743624012
THEMES Bears; hibernation; getting to sleep;
AGE GROUP 3-7 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS A poetic book about a young cub trying to put himself to sleep.
TITLE There’s a Koala in my Kitchen
AUTHOR Sean Farrar
ILLUSTRATOR Pat Kan
PUBLISHER Big Sky Publishing
ISBN 9781925520262
THEMES Aussie animals; nonsense; fun
AGE GROUP 4-7 years
RHYME Yes
JACKIE’S RATING /10 7
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS The meter’s not brilliant but I am super fussy about that – however it’s a fun read with all sorts of Aussie animals ending up in all sorts of unusual places.
TITLE The Sloth Who Came to Stay
AUTHOR Margaret Wild
ILLUSTRATOR Vivienne To
PUBLISHER Allen and Unwin
ISBN 9781760290221
THEMES Taking time; slowing down; family; sharing
AGE GROUP 3-6 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS How do you get your family to slow down? Bring a sloth home – that’s how.
Reviews first appeared in PASS IT ON – issue 633 Monday 26th June 2017
TITLE Little Koala Lost
AUTHOR Blaze Kwaymullina
ILLUSTRATOR Jess Racklyeft
PUBLISHER Omnibus and imprint of Scholastic
ISBN 9781742991283
THEMES Australian animals; Counting book
AGE GROUP 4 + years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 7.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS An Australian counting book where we follow lost Koala as he tries to find where he belongs.
TITLE How Many Dinosaurs Deep?
AUTHOR Kylie Dunstan
ILLUSTRATOR Kylie Dunstan
PUBLISHER Working Title Press
ISBN 9781921504839
THEMES Nannies; farms; family; love
AGE GROUP 3 – 6 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 7.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Lovely lilting repetition about what Nanny loves especially when her family visits her on her farm.
TITLE Noisy Nights
AUTHOR Fleur McDonald
ILLUSTRATOR Annie White
PUBLISHER New Frontier Publishing
ISBN 9781925059663
THEMES Animals; farms; noise; sleep
AGE GROUP 3 – 6 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 7.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS What do you do if all the animals won’t be quiet? Count the sheep that’s what!
TITLE ida, always
AUTHOR Caron Levis
ILLUSTRATOR Charles Santoso
PUBLISHER Koala Books, an imprint of Scholastic
ISBN 9781742761909
THEMES Zoo; city; friendship; sickness; death; goodbyes; comfort
AGE GROUP 3 + years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 9
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Tears. A beautiful story about dealing with an accepting the death of a loved one. Very touching.
TITLE Cyclone
AUTHOR Jackie French
ILLUSTRATOR Bruce Whatley
PUBLISHER Scholastic
ISBN 9781743623596
THEMES Cyclone Tracy; Darwin; Christmas; Rebuilding
AGE GROUP 4-7 years
RHYME Yes
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Love this – A crack, a lurch, our house is torn Ripped to paper by the storm. A stunning tribute to the devastation caused by Cyclone Tracy.
TITLE Digby and the Yodelayhee…Who?
AUTHOR Renee Price
ILLUSTRATOR Anil Tortop
PUBLISHER Create it kids
ISBN 9780992345754
THEMES Imagination; friendship; curiosity; music; performance; telling time
AGE GROUP 2 – 7 years
RHYME Yes and No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Ha – good fun – especially the song at the end that you can listen to via a QR reader (an app)

 

Reviews first appeared in PASS IT ON – issue 632 Monday 19th June 2017
TITLE Stripes in the Forest
AUTHOR Aleesah Darlison
ILLUSTRATOR Shane McGrath
PUBLISHER Big Sky Publishing
ISBN 9781925275711
THEMES Wildlife; Extinction; Hunting;
AGE GROUP 4 + years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 7.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Poetically written about the delicate balance that exists when “man” hunts with abandon. Includes a page of Thylacine Facts at the back.
TITLE How Many Dinosaurs Deep?
AUTHOR Ben Kitchin
ILLUSTRATOR Vicky Fieldhouse
PUBLISHER New Frontier
ISBN 9781925059731
THEMES Swimming; Dinosaurs; Overcoming fear;
AGE GROUP 3 – 6 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 7.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS A lovely way to explain depth with a beaut glossary of the dinosaurs mentioned at the back.
TITLE My Brother is a Beast
AUTHOR Damon Young
ILLUSTRATOR Peter Carnavas
PUBLISHER University of Queensland Press
ISBN 9780702259579
THEMES Brothers
AGE GROUP 3-7 years
RHYME Yes
JACKIE’S RATING /10 7.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Lots of action showing what different brothers get up to.
TITLE Stanley
AUTHOR Colin Thompson
ILLUSTRATOR Colin Thompson
PUBLISHER abc books
ISBN 9780733332852
THEMES Loneliness; single parenting; blended families; love; compromise; dogs; pets
AGE GROUP 3 + years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 9
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Divine. Funny. Gentle. A very subtle way to introduce the now very common animal known as the blended family.
Reviews first appeared in PASS IT ON – issue 631 Monday 12th June 2017
TITLE The Chalk Rainbow
AUTHOR Deborah Kelly
ILLUSTRATOR Gwynneth Jones
PUBLISHER E K Books
ISBN 978-1-925335-45-3
THEMES Autism Spectrum Disorder; love; trust; empathy; family
AGE GROUP 4 – 8 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 7.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS If you hate the colour black then paint the world with rainbows – what a lovely thought and a clever solution to Zane’s situation.
ITITLE I Spy Dad
AUTHOR Janeen Brian
ILLUSTRATOR Chantal Stewart
PUBLISHER New Frontier
ISBN 9781921042171
THEMES Dads; What dads do; I spy;
AGE GROUP 3 – 6 years
RHYME Yes
JACKIE’S RATING /10 7.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS A really fun read. Lots of lovely action words. I can see a splashing dad. A crashing dad. A dashing dad.
TITLE Eddie Frogbert
AUTHOR Sue deGennaro
ILLUSTRATOR Sue deGennaro
PUBLISHER Scholastic
ISBN 978-1-76027-678-2
THEMES Family; home; animals; being different; overcoming fears; baby steps
AGE GROUP 3-7 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Love the colour scheme and the way that by taking baby steps Eddie overcame his fear.
TITLE I’m Australian Too
AUTHOR Mem Fox
ILLUSTRATOR Ronojoy Ghosh
PUBLISHER Scholastic
ISBN 9781760276218
THEMES Family; home; people; places; Australia and what it means to be Australian; multiculturalism; cultural diversity; migration; history; refugees
AGE GROUP 4 – 8  years
RHYME Yes
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS So many beginnings and experiences that have led to settlement in Australia. I could very much relate being a Nigerian born, Cornish Australian.

 

Reviews first appeared in PASS IT ON – issue 630 Monday 5th June 2017
TITLE The Great Zoo Hullabaloo
AUTHOR Mark Carthew
ILLUSTRATOR Anil Tortop
PUBLISHER New Frontier
ISBN 978-1-925059-78-6
THEMES Adventure; Zoo; Siblings; Animals; Instruments
AGE GROUP 3-6 years
RHYME Yes
JACKIE’S RATING /10 7.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Love a hullabaloo. Lots of colourful action pictures as Jess and Jack search for the missing animals.
TITLE The Brown Dog
AUTHOR Gina Inverarity
ILLUSTRATOR Greg Holfeld
PUBLISHER working title press
ISBN 978-1-921504-74-7
THEMES Emotion; metaphor; change; empathy
AGE GROUP 7+ years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 9
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Oh my goodness – tears are falling. A beautifully written and illustrated book about feeling low.
TITLE The Cat Wants Cuddles
AUTHOR P Crumble
ILLUSTRATOR Lucinda Gifford
PUBLISHER Scholastic
ISBN 978-1-74381-141-2
THEMES cats, wants, humour, secret thoughts of animals, pets, food, obsession
AGE GROUP 4-7 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Author and illustrator have captured a cat’s personality to a T. Very funny.
TITLE The Leaky Story
AUTHOR Devon Sillett
ILLUSTRATOR Anil Tortop
PUBLISHER EK Books
ISBN 978-1-925335-39-2
THEMES Adventure; books; imagination; family
AGE GROUP 4 – 8  years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Beware! Never leave books unread on your shelves or the story may just leak itself out into your living room.
Reviews first appeared in PASS IT ON – issue 629 Monday 29th May 2017
TITLE Rose’s Red Boots
AUTHOR Maura Finn
ILLUSTRATOR Karen Erasmus
PUBLISHER New Frontier
ISBN 978-0-957988-44-6
THEMES Autumn; Outdoor play; Pet care
AGE GROUP 3-6 years
RHYME Yes
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS A joyful book with a charming rhythm – makes you want get outside and skip about.
TITLE Ava’s Spectacular Spectacles
AUTHOR Alice Rex
ILLUSTRATOR Angela Perrini
PUBLISHER New Frontier
ISBN 978-1-925059-98-4
THEMES Fairy Tales; Vision impairment; Adventure
AGE GROUP 3-6 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Clever retelling of a number of fairy tales to highlight what may have happened if only the characters had worn their glasses.
TITLE Boy
AUTHOR Phil Cummings
ILLUSTRATOR Shane Devries
PUBLISHER Scholastic
ISBN 978-1-76027-705-5
THEMES Inclusion; Misunderstanding; Peace; Being hearing impaired
AGE GROUP 4-8 years
RHYME No
JACKIE’S RATING /10 8.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Why are you fighting? Now THAT is the question and thanks to BOY for asking it.
A REVIEW Sarah Steed – Kids Book Review
TITLE My Meerkat Mum
AUTHOR Ruth Paul
ILLUSTRATOR Ruth Paul
PUBLISHER Scholastic
ISBN 978-1-77543-489-4
THEMES Busy mums; animals; direction
AGE GROUP 3-7  years
RHYME Yes
JACKIE’S RATING /10 7.5
JACKIE’S THOUGHTS Staccato rhythm marches the reader along through a family of meerkats’ day. A terrific way for youngsters to learn directional words – with lots of visual cues.