Review Blog

May 20 2010

Little Else (series) by Julie Hunt and Beth Norling

cover image

Allen and Unwin, 2010.
Middle primary. This series of short novels is aimed at middle primary readers. The include the books Ghost hunter, Trick rider and On the run. All are about 60-80 pages long with simple, clear, line illustrations and short chapters. The prose is clear and unencumbered, with short sentences, lots of dialogue and clear, evocative descriptions of the characters and the settings. With their harder than average covers, pleasant size, and an easy to read, clear font, these will be eagerly picked up by newly independent readers.
Trick rider (ISBN 978 1 74175 878 8)
The first in the series Little Else, tells of Else's time in Ma Calico's Bush Circus, where she performed under the name of Petite Elsie, tumbling and leaping with the Flying Giuseppe. But not receiving a penny for their efforts sees Else searching for the bushranger, Harry Blast to help them.
On the run (ISBN 978 1 74175 878 8)
Else leaves the circus and astride her huge horse, Outlaw, once belonging to a bushranger, she inadvertently frees a team of ill treated bullocks, and so is being chased not only as a cattle duffer, but a horse thief.
Ghost hunter(ISBN 978 1 74175 878 8)
Little Else is the leader of a small but ruthless gang of bushrangers. Needing to have her horse reshod, the gang stops at the blacksmith shop where they meet Billy Sparrow, the jockey. For the loan of several horses, Little Else agrees to race the unraceable horse, Long Shot in next day's race. Winning, she secures her prize of a group of horses and she and her followers, Lightning Jack, Toothpick, Firebolt Jim and Dangerous Dan are off to search for the Lost Herd, last seen near Mt Lost. Adventures come thick and fast as the group must leap over a chasm, avoid being lost in the back of beyond, and use Little Else's skill of horse whispering and tumbling to bring the cattle home.
Fran Knight

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