New Australian Fiction with Young Australians: Six Bedrooms and Relativity

by - August 5th, 2015

Six Bedrooms

Some of the most beguiling writing for adults features young characters. I touched on this when I reviewed Joan London’s The Golden Age in January. This book has recently been awarded the 2015 Kibble Award. Yann Martel’s The Life of Pi also has a young adult protagonist, as does Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch and Eimear […]

Love Thy Pets – Picture Book Reviews

by - August 3rd, 2015


Why do animals feature so heavily in picture books? 1. They are so relatable. 2. They provide a sense of comfort and nurturing. 3. They reinforce positive emotions and behaviours such as empathy. Whether these animals are represented as their true natures or anthropomorphically, children (and adults) feel connected to these cute characters and regard […]

Getting Serious about Series – Pup Patrol

by - August 3rd, 2015

Pup Patrol Stamp

As a grown-up reader, I’d be hard put to name a story that I doted on as a ‘kid reader’ that wasn’t part of a book series, Trixie Belden being a prime example – I still have 34 surviving copies in my collection! Ask any Gen Z child what they are currently reading and chances […]

Review: Print’s Not Dead

by - August 2nd, 2015

Print's Not Dead

Like books, magazines hold an immense pull for me. Print magazines, particularly, are something I’ll pore over for hours and keep and display on my bookshelves or coffee tables. So a coffee table book about magazines holds an elevated appeal. I ordered Ruth Jamieson’s Print’s Not Dead as soon as I heard about it and […]

Australian YA: Soon by Morris Gleitzman

by - August 2nd, 2015


On my recent bookshop tour of London there were more books by Morris Gleitzman on the shelves than copies of The Book Thief. This is not to detract from Marcus Zusak’s famous and well-stocked literary export but means that there were many, many Gleitzmans on display, a fantastic achievement for our popular Australian children’s and […]

YA Fairy Tale Retellings: Where Do You Start?

by - August 2nd, 2015


YA is basically built on wild crazes that burn bright for a year or so — and than melt into a puddle. It used to be vampires, then hello dystopian, how we love you. And now? Fairy tale retellings! I find retellings particularly addictive because they rekindle childhood obsessions. And who can really grow out of Cinderella […]

A bunch of mini-reviews

by - July 28th, 2015


So many books, so little time… to review them. So here I go again with a whole bunch of mini reviews.   Footy Dreaming by Michael Hyde (2015) This is a young adult novel about two footy-playing teenagers in a small Australian town. They are from different backgrounds, but they share a common dream — […]

Review: Four – A Divergent Collection by Veronica Roth

by - July 28th, 2015


The saddest thing in the world is when an excellent trilogy concludes. So HUZZAH for those brilliant authors who write extra stories for us hungry fans. Veronica Roth’s Divergent trilogy is mind-blowingly famous. And have you snabbled her short stories about Four, yet? Because you need to. Four: A Divergent Collection was just perfection. I couldn’t be any […]

Picture Books for Stubborn Kids

by - July 28th, 2015


In typical toddler fashion, my youngest daughter (aged two and a half) has developed the “NO! I don’t like it!”, and the “Don’t want it!” approach to almost everything offered, much to the delight of her parents (that’s me). If you’re a parent or teacher of children anywhere between two and five years old, and […]

Anything but Boring – A collection of Board Book reviews

by - July 27th, 2015

Magic Car Wash series

I’m not sure how or why but I’ve still got many of the board books of my childhood and now, those from my daughter’s early learning days. Their very construction may have something to do with standing up to the test of time. Maybe, I just can’t bear to part with them because of what […]

The Book Brief: The Very Best New Release Books in August

by - July 27th, 2015


Each month we bring you the best new release books in our Book Brief. Get FREE shipping when you use the promo code bookbrief at checkout Fiction Books Close Your Eyes by Michael Robotham A mother and her teenage daughter are found murdered and a clinical psychologist is called in to help the investigation. Nothing […]

Risk, Meet Fleur Ferris

by - July 24th, 2015


Thanks for speaking to Boomerang Books Blog, Fleur. Thanks you for having me on the blog Joy. Your new YA novel, Risk (Random House Australia) is creating a buzz in Australian YA circles. I believe that it has a very important message, told as an engaging story. Is it your first published work? Have you met […]

Boomerang Book Bites: Stealing People by Robert Wilson

by - July 23rd, 2015


Two years after the events of You Will Never Find Me Charlie Boxer’s life is nearing some normalcy. Normal for a kidnap consultant whose services offer a little bit extra revenge on the side. His relationships with his ex-wife Mercy and daughter Amy are back on track and his relationship with Isabel is blossoming. However […]

Georgie Donaghey in the Spotlight; ‘Lulu’ Makes her Debut

by - July 20th, 2015

Georgie Donaghey

It’s not enough to just want something and hope that it will be delivered  to you on a silver platter. Unfortunately for most of us, life isn’t that simple. What we try to teach our kids is that you absolutely can achieve your aspirations, your goals, your dreams, but it takes work, persistence and determination. […]

Review – Lulu

by - July 19th, 2015


At first glance, life on the icy floes may seem appealing. (Unless you reside in SE Queensland as I do with no real concept of what cold is until you have to live through ‘an unseasonably cold winter’ with little more than a cotton tee-shirt and a pair of bed socks). In Lulu’s world, there […]

Review: Only Ever Yours by Louise O’Neill

by - July 19th, 2015


You know those books that make you sit back and go, “Um, woah” and then are super hard to talk about because they’ve messed with your brain so much? WELL. Only Ever Yours by Louise O’Neill definitely fits in that category. It’s the kind of book that makes you think. It took me ages to formulate thoughts. WHAT DO […]

Go Set A Watchman

by - July 16th, 2015

Go Set A Watchman

While I won’t deny I’ve been beside myself with anticipation awaiting the release of Harper Lee’s Go Set A Watchman, I’ve simultaneously been terrified about how it might read, for the publishers announced it would be printed in its organic, unedited form. Go Set A Watchman is, after all, a kind of first draft rejected […]

Boomerang Book Bites: Go Set A Watchman by Harper Lee

by - July 16th, 2015


I fell instantly in love with this book though. Having done a re-read of To Kill A Mockingbird in preparation I instantly fell into step with the voice of Jean Louise ‘Scout’ Finch. At 26 years old the character we already know is all there, which makes sense because this is the same character, at […]

Struggling Book Children

by - July 16th, 2015


Some thought-provoking Australian novels for children have appeared recently. Standouts include New Boy by Nick Earls (Puffin), Run, Pip, Run by J.C. Jones (Allen & Unwin), Dropping In by Geoff Havel (Fremantle Press), Birrung the Secret Friend by Children’s Laureate, Jackie French (Angus & Robertson) and Plenty by Ananda Braxton-Smith (Black Dog Books, Walker Books). […]

Review: Go Set A Watchman by Harper Lee

by - July 15th, 2015


The book everyone is talking about. The book no one thought they would ever see. Fifty Five years after To Kill A Mockingbird we have a sequel…. Firstly I think it is really important to remember the context of this book while reading it. This book was written before To Kill A Mockingbird. Before all […]

Why You Should Be Reading YA Author, Derek Landy’s, Books

by - July 15th, 2015


If you haven’t read any books by YA author, Derek Landy, then you’re missing out. He’s written a whole conglomeration of books centred around a living skeleton (it’s awesome, trust me) and now his latest book Demon Road is releasing in August. Which is exciting. Are you excited? I AM EXCITED. But in case you’re staring at […]

Win a Father’s Day Hamper of Books

by - July 15th, 2015


  Looking for great  gifts to buy for your Dad? Books make fantastic gifts for Father‘s Day! And to make your job easier, we’ve released our 2015 Father‘s Day Catalogue. If you order from our Father‘s Day Catalogue before midnight on Sunday 31 August, you’ll get FREE shipping on your order when you use the promotional […]

Song, Poem and Rhyme Picture Books

by - July 14th, 2015


Children connect with songs and rhymes. This innate quality allows young readers and listeners the ability to play and experiment with sounds with ease. Not only do these lyrical stories lend themselves to a range of engaging and interactive experiences, but their audience is also given opportunities to learn the mechanics of language, sequences and […]

Fantasy for Young Readers

by - July 13th, 2015

Molly and Pim

Martine Murray is the acclaimed Australian writer of The Slightly True Story of Cedar B Hartley, the Henrietta series and, for older readers, How to Make a Bird. Her new book is Molly and Pim and the Millions of Stars (Text Publishing). Molly’s life is set in the real world but her story has fantastical […]

Classics to cherish – Old tale picture book reviews

by - July 13th, 2015

Alice in Wonderland 150th

Don’t you love that emphatic certainty a below-twelve year-old has whenever they hear a remix of a song dating from the golden oldie era? ‘They got that song from such and such movie, Mum!’ Um well, no actually it was around way before me…Stories evoke similar conviction. Modern retellings of classic children’s stories might seem […]

Review: Every Breath by Ellie Marney

by - July 12th, 2015

I absolutely loved and adored Every Breath by Ellie Marney. I DID! I put off reading it for a few stupid reasons and yes I am ashamed. But I was nervous to try it because: I totally adore Sherlock Holmes and I didn’t want to read a bad retelling, The cover is not pretty. I’m […]

Re-Reading To Kill A Mockingbird

by - July 11th, 2015


In anticipation of the new Harper Lee novel, Go Set A Watchman, (out July 14) I decided it was the perfect time for a re-read of To Kill A Mockingbird. I don’t think I’ve read the book since high school and the movie is still so dominant in my mind so it was a great […]

Australian YA and other fiction in London

by - July 10th, 2015


I’m just back from a tour of (mostly indie) London bookshops. My visit to the Tower of London was enhanced after seeing Sonya Hartnett’s Children of the King, which alludes to the missing princes held captive by their uncle Richard III in the Tower, in a Notting Hill bookshop. Australian YA, as well as children’s and […]

Australian YA Fiction: Meet Nova Weetman, author of Frankie and Joely

by - July 9th, 2015

Frankie and Joely

  My upcoming YA column for the Weekend Australian profiles four new novels by Australian women. One of the books I selected for the column is Frankie and Joely (UQP) by Nova Weetman. Nova gives some fascinating insights into her work in the following interview. What’s your background in books, Nova? My first YA novel The […]

What Is It? Fables & Parables For All Readers

by - July 8th, 2015

The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly

Today I thought I’d take a closer look at the differences between fables and parables and come up with some recommendations for readers of all ages who enjoy a little learning with their leisure. A fable is: a short story that conveys a moral to the reader, typically with animals as characters. A parable is: a short story designed […]

Double Dipping – Picture book therapy

by - July 6th, 2015

Newspaper Hats

When medical conditions affect children or the people in their lives, one of the most daunting aspects of their situation is how to cope. The management of a disease or disability is one thing, the understanding why they have it and why others react the way they do is another. Picture books are marvellous non-invasive […]

Review: All Fall Down (Embassy Row #1) by Ally Carter

by - July 5th, 2015


I am quite pleased with Ally Carter‘s latest book All Fall Down. I had high expectations since her NYT bestselling series, Gallagher Girls, is such an excellently hilarious series, but All Fall Down definitely stands on it’s own! It features Grace, snarky and bitter, and granddaughter of a powerful ambassador. Oh and she’s looking for her mother’s […]

Trace Balla’s Time to Shine

by - July 2nd, 2015

Up-and-comer author illustrator, Trace Balla, has quickly hit the scene with the recent success of ‘Rivertime‘, being both shortlisted in the 2015 Children’s Book Council of Australia Picture Book of the Year Awards, and winning this year’s Readings Children’s Book Prize. Her work stems from a background in art therapy, animations and community involvement, with […]

Margaret Wild Changes Lives – Picture Book Reviews

by - June 30th, 2015


Margaret Wild is a much-loved, award-winning author with over 70 titles to her name, having great success with acclaimed books including Fox, The Very Best of Friends, Harry and Hopper, Lucy Goosey, Davy and the Duckling, and The Treasure Box. Her books extend to a wide range of themes, and are characteristically known for their […]

Review: Stealing People by Robert Wilson

by - June 30th, 2015


Charlie Boxer returns in one of Robert Wilson’s best novels to date. Two years after the events of You Will Never Find Me Charlie Boxer’s life is nearing some normalcy. Normal for a kidnap consultant whose services offer a little bit extra revenge on the side. His relationships with his ex-wife Mercy and daughter Amy […]

The Best of Australian YA

by - June 30th, 2015


I’m an avid chewer of books but, surprisingly, I don’t read a lot of literature from my own country. Oh horror! Gasp with me! It’s an abominable shame. The reason for this is, a) I read mostly YA, b) most famous YA books are by American authors, and c) it seems much easier to get […]

Review – Fly-In Fly-Out Dad

by - June 29th, 2015

A year ago, I made a rare flight to Rockhampton. It was a mid-week, evening departure on one of those regional planes no bigger than a Lego model. What struck me most about the flight however as I waited in the boarding lounge, was the sheer number of men and women arriving into Brisbane that […]

The Book Brief: The Very Best New Release Books in July

by - June 29th, 2015


Each month we bring you the best new release books in our Book Brief. Get FREE shipping when you use the promo code bookbrief at checkout Fiction Books Go Set A Watchman by Harper Lee Set during the mid-1950s, Go Set a Watchman features many of the characters from To Kill a Mockingbird some twenty […]

Review: Those We Left Behind by Stuart Neville

by - June 26th, 2015


Stuart Neville takes his writing up another notch in his latest thought-provoking and tragic crime novel. This isn’t a crime novel where a mystery needs to be solved or a vicious killer is stalking victims, although you are kept guessing at different times. This is a crime novel about what happens afterwards, after a crime […]

Boomerang Book Bites: The Cartel by Don Winslow

by - June 25th, 2015


Ten years ago Don Winslow wrote the thriller of the decade. The Power of the Dog was an epic thriller that detailed America’s thirty year war on drugs on both sides of the U.S.-Mexican border. Ten years later he has done it again. Winslow blows The Power of the Dog away detailing the next ten […]