On the anniversary of her father’s death, Sharni returns to the place they both loved – the tingle forest. She wants to visit their secret place, to feel her father around her. But Sharni didn’t tell anyone where she was going, and, with night approaching, she is lost. She will have to spend the night in the forest.
Alone in the dark, Sharni discovers another secret that the forest holds, and vows never to tell. SOmetimes, though, promises are hard to keep. What if telling the secret could save someone’s life, or at least give them their life back?
Secrets in the Tingle Forest is a gentle, uplifting children’s story with a delightful blend of adventure and personal growth. Twelve year old Sharni works through her own problems and also reaches out to others. She is helped by a wise and understanding, a similarly canny woman who was her father’s girlfriend, and the mysterious man in the forest.
A lovely offering.
Secrets in the Tingle Forest, by Louise Schofield
Fremantle Aarts Centre Press, 2003
Max and Kelly have a strange Aunt who works at the zoo. When Aunt Zelda is around, wierd and wonderful things happen. So when Aunt Zelda invites the family to the Zoo Room to celebrate Max’s birthday, no one knows what to expect.
At the Zoo Room, there are strange things afoot. The waiter is a bear, the fellow diners are birds and beasts, and there is no sign of Aunt Zelda. Choosing from a menu of fried bugs and beast of the day proves a little challenging. The restaurant is a thrilling combination of excitement and danger. When the meal is over, the children are not sure they really want to go home.
The Zoo Room is a fun story with fantasy and frivolity blended in a way to appeal to five to eight year olds. The illustrations of Malcolm Geste capture both the fun and the mystery of the tale. Kids will love searching for the elusive Aunt Zelda, who can be found peeking at her nephew’s adventure. A fun read.
The Zoo Room, by Louise Schofield, illustrated by Malcolm Geste
Sandcastle Books, Fremantle Arts Centre Press, 2002