ReadPlus is a collection of selected books and films arranged under themes. This web site provides lists, reviews and resources for librarians, teachers and parents about books for young people aged 5 to 18.
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Latest Review

Sep 18 2018

Meet me at the intersection: Short stories edited by Rebecca Lim and Ambelin Kwaymullina

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Fremantle Press, 2018. ISBN 9781925591705
(Age: 14+) Recommended. Themes: LGBTIQA+. Disabilities. Indigenous Australians. Cultures. Short stories. Meet me at the intersection is an collection of short stories by authors who write from the heart about issues that have personal meaning to them. These authors include those with a disability, are LGBTIQA+ or are Indigenous and are passionate about sharing their stories written from their point of view.
At the beginning of each story is a blurb about the author and the inspiration for their story, which is fantastic as it gives the reader an insight to how and why the author came to write this particular piece.
My favourite of the short stories was 'Harry Potter and the Disappearing Pages' by Olivia Muscat because of the Harry Potter connection. The author says right from the beginning that the character in the story is her and this connection seemed to personalise it for me.
Many of the stories are raw and brutally honest. There is no filter to what is written and they say exactly what they think. Sometimes this can be confronting but mostly you appreciate the honesty and frankness of the story. With some of the stories, I wondered what the point was but in hindsight, the point is really a snippet of a story that is waiting to be told.
The stories are quite diverse and it is refreshing to change pace at the beginning of each new story. The stories are not long and at times, they leave you wishing for more. Some are revelations and others make you think about topics not normally spoken about.
I would recommend this book to 14+ readers whose interest is in diversity amongst our population.
Gerri Mills



More Reviews

Sep 18 2018

Kissed by the moon by Alison Lester

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Penguin, 2013. ISBN 9780670076758
(Age: 3+) Highly recommended. Picture book. Themes: Influences. Growing up. This beautiful book has been reissued as a board book, and will win hearts all over again with its wishes for the future of a new born child. Alison Lester, one of...
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Sep 18 2018

The honey factory by Jurgen Tautz and Diedrich Steen

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Black Inc Books, 2018. ISBN 9781760640408
(Age: Senior secondary - Adult) Recommended. Non-fiction. The subtitle 'Inside the ingenious world of bees' describes exactly what this book is about - not so much a guide to beekeeping but a detailed exploration of what bees do and how their...
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Sep 18 2018

Ruby's worry by Tom Percival

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Bloomsbury, 2018. ISBN 9781408892152
(Age: 3+) Recommended. Themes: Anxiety. Depression. Sharing. Friendship. Ruby's life is carefree and happy, but one day a worry finds her. At first it is a very small worry and can be hidden behind her, or even ignored. But as time goes on the worry...
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Sep 18 2018

Uncle Shawn and Bill and the pajimminy-crimminy unusual adventure by A.L. Kennedy

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Ill. by Gemma Correll. Walker Books Ltd, 2018. ISBN 9781406360509
(Ages: 6-9) Recommended. Themes: Friendship. Humour. Bonkers story of friendship, llamas and total evil.
Uncle Shawn and Bill are back, and so are the llamas. In a book that could stand alone or work as a sequel, they...
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Sep 18 2018

Funny Kid: Prank wars by Matt Stanton

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Harper Collins, 2018. ISBN 9780733335990
(Ages: 8-12) Highly recommended. Themes: Humour. This is the third book in the Funny Kid book series. Max, otherwise known as 'funny kid' is determined to make his class mates laugh at his pranks and antics, at any cost. When Max's class...
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Sep 17 2018

Amazing Australian Women by Pamela Freeman and Sophie Beer

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Lothian Children's Books, 2018. ISBN 9780734418456
(Age: 7+) Highly recommended. Themes: Women - Australia. The authors have chosen twelve Australian women from different backgrounds and time periods to feature in this brightly illustrated book. Some of them will be familiar to all...
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Sep 17 2018

How I didn't straighten my hair (and other life lessons) by Angela May George

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Omnibus Books, 2018. ISBN 9781742999555
(Age: Upper primary - lower secondary) Themes: bullying, friendships, Greek culture, family. Dora is trying to find "her thing" but, disappointingly for her Greek family, Greek dancing isn't for her. 17 year old sister Athena, is a born dancer,...
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Sep 17 2018

Princess Swashbuckle by Hollie Hughes

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Ill. by Deborah Allwright. Bloomsbury, 2018. ISBN 9781408862803
(Age: 4+) Recommended. Themes: Princesses, Stereotypes, Adventure, Frogs, Family, Verse, Humour. All Princess Swashbuckle wants to do is be a pirate queen, to sail away on a pirate ship and be the ruler of the waves. But her...
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Sep 17 2018

Norman the Knight gets a fright! by Mark Sperring

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Ill. by Ed Eaves. Bloomsbury, 2108. ISBN 9781408873991
(Age: 4+) Recommended. Themes: Knights, Dragons, Employment. When the four children and their cat apply for the job of helping Norman the Brave, a knight of renown, they are surprised at what he expects them to do. Their work...
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Sep 17 2018

The afterlife of Holly Chase by Cynthia Hand

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Harper Collins Publishers, 2017. ISBN 9781460754283
(Ages: 12+) Highly recommended. A heart-warming and emotional tale of the importance of generosity, family, love and compassion. When Holly Chase is visited on Christmas Eve by three spirits warning her of the imminent consequences of...
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Sep 14 2018

Finch by Penny Matthews

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Walker Books, 2018, ISBN 9781760650759
(Ages: 9+) Highly recommended. Themes: Country towns, Family, Vineyards. When Audrey and her family move to a small wine growing community after dad lost his job in the city, everyone is put out. Audrey and her sister miss their friends and school...
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Sep 14 2018

Backyard by Amanda Braxton-Smith

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Ill. by Lizzy Newcomb. Black Dog Books, 2018. ISBN 9781925381177
(Age: 3+) Highly recommended. Themes: Backyards, Insects, Animals, STEM, Discovery. What a feast can be found in one's own backyard, simply using the skill of observation. This wonderful book impels younger readers to do...
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Sep 14 2018

The Funny Life of Pets by James Campbell

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Bloomsbury, 2018. ISBN 9781408889947
(Age: 8+) Recommended. A dog's nose is more than 1 000 times more sensitive than our nose. That's why if you do a bottom burp in a dog's face it will go cross-eyed and fall over. Imagine a sausage dog's dilemma when it's eating sausages - the...
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Sep 14 2018

Goal Power by Meredith Costain

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Ella Diaries series. Scholastic, 2018. ISBN 9781743818060
(Age: 8+) Highly recommended. "Goal Power" is another instalment in the "Ella Diaries" series. It is a standalone read, and new readers to the series can start with this diary themed novel. Ella tells us about her daily...
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Sep 14 2018

Changing Gear by Scott Gardner

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Allen and Unwin, 2018. ISBN 9781760631468
(Age: 14+) Recommended. Themes: relationships, family, self-discovery, nature. Year 12 is over and Merrick Hilton has two weeks to study for his final exams. He tells his amicably separated parents he is staying at the other's place and takes off...
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Sep 13 2018

Natural born loser by Oliver Phommavanh

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Penguin Books, 2018. ISBN 9780143505730
(Age: 10+ ) Highly recommended. Natural born loser is an inspiring, funny story and promotes being yourself rather than following the crowd. Raymond is a typical year 6 boy who loves soccer and being with his best friend but he doesn't see...
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Sep 13 2018

Crossing Ebenezer Creek by Tanya Bolden

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Bloomsbury, 2018. ISBN 9781681196992
(Age: 13+) Recommended. In the latter months of 1864, during the U.S. Civil War, General Sherman of the Union led a huge army through Georgia, freeing slaves, plundering goods and destroying property of the vanquished. Many ex-slaves chose to...
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Sep 13 2018

Bonkers about beetles by Owen Davey

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Flying Eye Books, 2018. ISBN 9781911171485
(Ages: 6-adult) Highly recommended. Themes: Beetles. Non-fiction. What a wonderful encyclopaedic book about beetles, I read it from cover to cover, loving every piece of information given, observing the pictures with glee, scanning the layout...
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Sep 13 2018

Angry Cookie by Maria Karipidou

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Walker Books, 2018. ISBN 9781406383089
(Age: 4+) Recommended. Themes: Anger. Friendship. Confronted by an angry Cookie from the start, the reader will be in no doubt about the theme of this book. We are told in no uncertain terms, not to open the book, not to turn the page, and not to...
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Sep 13 2018

Melowy: The night of courage by Danielle Star

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Scholastic, 2018. ISBN 9781338151787
(Age 7+) Recommended. The night of courage is book 3 in the Melowy series and will be enjoyed by any pony lover aged 5+. In this book, readers meet the Melowies, magical ponies who are at school together. They come from a variety of...
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Sep 13 2018

I had such friends by Meg Gatland-Veness

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Pantera Press 2018. ISBN 9781925700015
(Age: Teens) Themes: Death. Grief. Suicide. Bullying. Depression. Prejudice. Love. Loneliness and coming of age issues. Homophobia. Sexuality. Sexual identity. Abuse. Neglect. Alcoholism. Domestic violence. Child sexual abuse. Self-confessed loser...
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Sep 11 2018

The story of Eva Carmichael by Gary Crew

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Ill. by Paul O'Sullivan. Harbour Publishing, 2018. ISBN 9781922134103
(Age: 7+) Highly recommended. Themes: Shipwrecks. Loch Aird. Migration. Victoria. Subtitled, "The wreck of the Loch Aird", this informative, sumptuously illustrated picture book will have readers delving into the...
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Sep 11 2018

The survival game by Nicky Singer

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Hodder Children's Books, 2018, ISBN 9781444944525
(Ages: 12+) Mhairi is a child displaced and desperate to return home. The world is changing around her and she is caught in an exodus as the people of Africa flee north, praying for a chance at survival now Global Warming is taking its...
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Sep 11 2018

The heart of a whale by Anna Pignataro

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Scholastic, 2018. ISBN 9781743817629
(Ages: 4+) Recommended. Themes: Whales. Loneliness. Melbourne author and illustrator, Pignataro has drawn and painted since a young child, culminating in a career of over 40 books, often nominated in prestigious Australian book awards. Her Agatha...
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Sep 11 2018

How to Ninja: Activity book by Marcus Emerson

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Diary of a 6th grade Ninja series. Allen and Unwin, 2018. ISBN 9781760523824
(Ages: 7+) Recommended. Themes: Ninja. Adventure. Humour. For those who have loved every edition of the funny series, Diary of a 6th grade Ninja, then this book is sure to add to their pleasure....
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Sep 11 2018

Dinosaur day out by Sarah Acton

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Walker Books 2018. ISBN 9781760650049
(Age:4+) When the children go off to the museum with Dad for the day, they are hoping to go to the dinosaur exhibition, but today that gallery is closed. So Dad buys a book about dinosaurs from the museum shop and they head off to the park instead....
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Sep 11 2018

The Scoop by Terrence J Quinn

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Simon and Schuster, 2018. ISBN 9781925640045
(Age: Senior school - Adult) Jonno Bligh, an award winning journalist seems to have it made. However there is a problem. Jonno has developed a habit for cocaine, which has turned a shy, socially timid guy into a party machine.
After...
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Sep 10 2018

The Finder by Kate Hendrick

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Text, 2018. ISBN 9781925603811
(Age: Adolescent) Highly recommended. This is a stunning new book that draws the audience into the world of a young woman who is determined to follow her dream as a 'finder', someone who will do the research that is needed to locate those who have become...
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Sep 10 2018

Pearl the Magical Unicorn by Sally Odgers

cover imageIll. by Adele K. Thomas. Scholastic, 2018. ISBN 9781742993133
(Age: 5-7) Themes: Unicorns, Magic. With a preponderance of pink pages, borders, pictures and magical words, "Pearl the Magical Unicorn" steps up to delight young readers. With simple chapters, an easy-to-read and share story,...
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Sep 10 2018

A cardboard palace by Allayne Webster

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Midnight Sun publishing, 2018. ISBN 9781925227253
(Ages: 10+) Highly recommended. Themes: Homelessness, Paris, Child trafficking, Crime. A Notable Book in the CBCA 2018 awards, an enlightening interview with Allayne Webster can be found at...
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