Review Blog

Jan 14 2015

Diary of a... (series) by Shamini Flint

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Ill. by Sally Heinrich. Allen & Unwin, 2015.
Diary of a golf pro. ISBN 9781760111496
Diary of a basketball hero. ISBN 9781760111502
Recommended for 7-9 year olds. Shamini Flint's popular diary series continues the story of sports-challenged Marcus Atkinson and his optimistic father who is determined to find a sport suitable for his son. In these two new adventures, basketball and golf are chosen with of course, interesting and humorous results.
In Diary of a golf pro, Mr Atkinson kits Marcus out in check golf trousers, baggy golf shirt and takes him and three classmates Hulk, JT and James out for lessons. Marcus is a literal thinker, his diary entries show his vivid imagination - tea instead of a golf tee, hot chips not chip shots and Spot his dog has to help dig out the holes Marcus fills in. Each golf lesson is a disaster. Marcus makes sand angels in the bunker, hits himself with a rebound shot, nothing seems to work out. At home Mum cheers him up and encourages his cooking skills; the stuffed chicken with pumpkin puree is a winner. After a difficult but surprising golf match Dad comes to the realisation that this is not the sport for his son, maybe basketball is the answer.
Of course in Diary of a basketball hero, Marcus is forced to learn another sport; unfortunately he has to join a girls' team. Dad's enthusiasm is no match for his son's ineptitude, even with all the tips, practice and encouragement, the outcome of the final match is a surprise. Sally Heinrich's cartoon sketches and speech bubbles complement Shamini Flint's narrative.
These diary books are great for reluctant readers and sports enthusiasts.
Rhyllis Bignell

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