The Susie K Files by Shamini Flint
Ill. by Sally Heinrich. Allen & Unwin, 2017.
Life of the party. ISBN 978176029 6681
Game changer. ISBN 9781760296698
(Age: 6+) Highly recommended. Themes: School. Difference. Fitting in. Problem solving. Susie K is a problem solver, she loves all things science and despite Mum's best efforts at pushing Susie to fit in, she just does not. So mesmerised by her problem solving efforts she actually keeps a filing cabinet of her attempts to solve problems, each file containing the problem, the experiments she carries out to explore the problem and her attempts to solve it. A few examples are given at the start of the story to explain just what she does. She would love a pet but is highly allergic to them so solves the problem by getting a goldfish. George becomes her confidante through the stories. Sally Heinrich's cute line illustrations underline the humour in the text adding another level of fun for the reader.
But as children read they will discover Susie's main problem, that of fitting in. All readers will sympathise with Susie as it is a universal problem that scans all ages and types of people.
The second in the series, Game changer will entreat younger readers as Susie must solve a major problem with Sports Day coming up at school. Being a devoted scientist and problem solver, sports does not figure into her realm of skills; she is hopeless at them all, so must do something to change this state of affairs.
Funny, wittily illustrated with an engaging main character, this series is sure to please middle primary people.