Tuesday, July 25, 2017
  • A Gaggle of Giggles

    Gaggle of Giggles

    A Gaggle of Giggles by Dianne Bates and Bill Condon (Phoenix Education) www.phoenixeduc.com

    This is a collection of LOL plays which junior secondary school students are sure to enjoy.

    All the plays feature large casts with big and small roles to suit every member of the class.

    A Gaggle of Giggles is chockablock full of jokes and puns and witty word play, as well as rollicking good stories. Its husband and wife authors have both had long and successful careers in writing and have both won major awards for their work.

    Available from

    Phoenix Education: www.phoenixeduc.com

  • The Simple Things

    The Simple ThingsThe Simple Things (Allen & Unwin) www.allenandunwin.com

    Ever since Stephen can remember, at Christmas and on his birthday, Aunty Lola has sent him her love and ten dollars. Then one day the two finally meet for the first time. Stephen's shyness and his aunt's impatience ensure that their relationship gets off to a rocky start. However, gradually they get to know and understand each other, and become firm friends. During the course of his visit with Auntie Lola, Stephen learns much about life, and the importance of the simple things. This is a warm and moving family story that is also very funny.

    'Short-listed in CBCA Book of the Year Awards 2015'

  • A Straight Line to My Heart

    A Straight Line to My HeartA straight line to my heart (Allen & Unwin) www.allenandunwin.com

    In 2012 A Straight Line To My Heart was awarded an Honour Book in the CBCA Awards. It was also on the shortlist for the Prime Minister's Literary Awards.

    School is over, not just for the year, but forever. Tiff and Kayla are free, which is what they've always wanted, but now summer is nearly at an end and that means life decisions. Tiff is hoping her job at the local paper will lead to something more... But 'The Shark' soon puts her straight on what it takes to become a hard-nosed reporter like him. At home, Reggie - the only granddad she's ever known - has quit the smokes and diagnosed himself as cactus. Then Kayla hits her with some big news. And into all this stumbles Davey, the first boy who has ever really wanted to know her.

    Tiff is smart with words and rarely does tears, but in one short week she discovers that words don't always get you there; they don't let you say all the stuff from deep in your heart.'

    This compelling, honest and heart-warming book explores love and relationships, old and new, in a 'family' related only by love.'
    -CBCA judge's report.

  • Confessions of a Liar, Thief and Failed Sex God

    Confessions of a Liar, Thief and Failed Sex GodConfessions of a Liar, Thief and Failed Sex God (Random House) www.randomhouse.com.au

    "I have this annoying problem that gives me a lot of trouble: a conscience."

    Neil Bridges attends a Catholic boys' school in which teachers rule with iron fists and thick leather straps. Some crumble under the pressure but Neil toughs it out, just as his Vietnam-bound older brother has done before him. He has to be a man, after all. But at sixteen, how can he be sure of himself when he's not sure of anything else? He loses a friend and finds another, falls in love and unwittingly treads a path that leads to revenge and possibly murder . . .

    In 2010 Confessions of a Liar, Thief and Failed Sex God won the inaugural Prime Minister's Literary Award for young adult fiction.
    The short, chiselled chapters ensure that not a word is wasted. Condon is a writer of considerable craft who eschews the flamboyant in search of deeper truths.
    -Judges' comments.

  • No Worries

    No WorriesNo Worries (UQP) www.uqp.uq.edu.au

    No Worries was an Honour Book in the Older Readers category Children's Book Council Book of the Year Awards for 2006.

    Brian Talbot: Seventeen. Virgin. High School Dropout. Nightshift Worker. In Love.

    Both humorous and confronting, No Worries is a gripping urban tale of life, death, love, joy, and family. It reminds us all to hold on to the important things, however difficult that might be.

    'It is by turns painful, moving, hopeful, funny and warm.'
    - Judges' Report

    No Worries was short listed for the Ethel Turner Prize in the NSW Premier's Awards, 2006.

    'This is a story of deep irony and sadness, relieved by the sparest, lightest touches of human warmth with which a boy can manage. A considerable achievement.
    - Judges' Report.

  • Dare Devils

    Dare DevilsDare Devils (UQP) www.uqp.uq.edu.au

    Teenager Thorns may have only a short time to live, but he's determined to make every second count. And that's where Jack comes in. Safe and quiet, he's going to help the high-spirited Thorns fulfil his wish list. Challenging, touching and funny, Daredevils is a YA novel about friendship, courage, the pursuit of dreams and the joy of living.

    "...Thought-provoking... a page-turner" (Bookseller+Publisher)

  • Give Me Truth

    Give Me TruthGive Me Truth (Random House) www.randomhouse.com.au

    "I'm an ocean cliff. He's erosion. I feel a large part of me crumbling into the sea, yet somehow I don't mind at all."

    Caitlin and David have much in common. They're the same age, they go to the same school, they're both in the school play. And each of them is watching their family fall apart. It's a violent situation, but violence isn't always physical. Caitlin and David are in it together, but separate. And somewhere, somehow, inevitably, it all has to come to a head.

  • Rock and Roll Elephants

    Rock and Roll ElephantsRock and Roll Elephants (Hands Up Books) www.handsup.karoo.net

    Rock and Roll Elephants is a trunk full of verses that is sure to tickle the funny bones of poetry lovers young and old. This is a book laden with wit and word play, lively rhymes and lopsided logic that will make you think and feel, and most definitely, will make you smile.

    "This makes everything I've written seem second-rate. I'm a failure!"
    William Shakespeare.

    "Rock and Roll Elephants is a work of incredible genius! I am stunned and amazed, but I probably shouldn't be, as the author does have wonderful genes."
    Bill Condon's mum.

  • 100 Things You Really Need To Know

    100-things-130x110Did you know?

    Sharks cannot swim backwards
    Gorillas beat their chests when they are nervous
    Fish can get seasick if kept on board a ship

    This is essential information for an inquisitive mind.

  • 100 Things You Really Need To Know About Geography

    100 Things You Really Need To Know About GeographyStill more essential information for inquisitive young minds, but this time the focus is on geography.

    His name is Sludge and he's a judge.
    he is the best there is.
    He's fair and square and very rare,
    In fact, he's quite a whiz!

  • Handsome and Petal

    Handsome and PetalHandsome and Petal is a play based on the famous fairy tale Hansel and Gretel. However, where that story was grim and gloomy, this courtroom drama is full of laughs. There's not much order in this court but it's sure to have great appeal. Come along and witness the fun!

  • From Zero to Hero

    From Zero to HeroWhen it comes to using his imagination, Wayne's no slouch. Especially when he needs an excuse to get him out of trouble. Things heat up when he stumbles across a bank robbery while on work experience for his local paper.

    Wayne's sure he's got a scoop. So how come nobody believes him?

  • Albert Ironstain

    Albert IronstainYoung inventor Albert is hard at work on his greatest challenge yet - a robot twin, called Elvis! Albert is sure the robot will allow him to escape the terrible tortures of cleaning his room and eating yucky green vegetables. But unfortunately, Elvis turns out to be a robot with a mind of his own ...

  • Mack the Quack

    Mack the QuackThis is a play about Mack the Quack.
    Mack is a duck without any luck.
    Too big. Too strange.
    He doesn't fit in.
    He enters the Duck Show - doesn't win.
    He's a frown duck, a down duck -
    A beaten to the ground duck ...
    But before another feather flies,
    Mack is quacking with surprise!

  • The Grass is Greener

    The Grass is GreenerWhat comes to mind when you think of the colour green? In this anthology, you will find fascinating insights into subjects such as the environment, jealousy, Ireland, Greenland and bushwalking. Ideal for the primary or secondary English classroom, The Grass is Greener incorporates a wide range of text types as it explores themes such as history, science, sport, imaginative and real-life experiences. Contributors include Robert Leeson, Dianne Bates, Steven Herrick, J R R Tolkein, Chris McTrustry and David Hill.

  • The Boomerang Elves

    Read this play and you shall learn -
    Boomerang Elves always return.
    They come back happy and eager to please.
    But if you're not careful,
    They come back as fleas!

    Sandy the shoemaker knows this now,
    As he studies a fleabite as big as a cow!

    There's lots of wordplay and fun in this wacky re-telling of a favourite fairy tale.