Hector is fed with up with Drain Boys gang picking on everyone, so when he wakes up with to the discovery that he’s the world’s newest superhero, he’s determined to put a stop to the Drain Boys’ evil ways.
First, though, he needs a superhero outfit and a superhero name. A raid on the dress-ups box fixes the costume and the name – that’s easy: Hector the Protector. Armed with a bevy of superhero powers – he can spew on demand, he has a fearsome smell and he can walk on top of fences – he and his friends Jello and Mick are ready for action.
Hector the Protector is a fun offering, part of the Little Stirrers series from new publisher Limelight Press. With plenty of silliness, a fast-moving plot and cartoon-style illustrations by Lloyd Foye, it will appeal to children aged 7-10, especially those making their first attempts at reading novels.
Hector the Protector, by Janette Brazel
Limelight Press, 2005
When Ellie and Zac’s Great Grandma Lola dies, the twins hope that she has left some of her fortune to their parents. Things have been tough for them since their Uncle Bert lost all their money in a failed cane-toad stuffing enterprise.
But the twins and the rest of the Hunter clan are disappointed to find that there is no money in the will – just some wierd and mostly useless gifts and a bizarre riddle which must be solved before the missing money can be found and divided up.The fourteen family members gather in Grandma Lola’s house to follow the clues and try to unravel the mystery.
Zac and Ellie love puzzles, and they lead the way in unravelling this one, in spite of crotchety Uncle Bert who thinks children should be neither seen nor heard, and the tensions between various family members.
When everyone else seems to have given up on solving the mystery, the twins persevere and make the vital breakthrough.
Dead Giveaway is a fun mystery for 10 to 12 year old readers, with plenty of chance to solve the pieces of the puzzle. Author Janette Brazel has a fine sense of humour and a great ability to add just the right balance of the bizarre.
Dead Giveaway, by Janette Brazel
Koala Books, 2004
Bruce Brain wants to be normal. He wants a normal life with normal parents who do normal things. But with a real name like Bojangles and a habit of putting things up your nose, is there any chance for Bruce to be normal?
Bruce’s parents work hard in their shop, Mystic Moon, where fortune telling and crystals are just some of the new age offerings. But Bruce discovers that someone is trying to destroy the Mystic Moon. He doesn’t know why, but thinks he does know who – his teacher, Mrs Greenbaum. What’s worse, he thinks she’s trying to kill him.
Pea Brain is a fun, bizarre book from author Janette Brazel. Full of silliness and mystery, the book nonetheless manages to deal with themes of family and friendship.
Pea Brain, by Janette Brazel
Banana Books, 2002
When Jake was five a terrible thing happened. His twin brother Blake disappeared. Blake has not been seen since, and Jake still misses him. Now he’s nearly thirteen and still hopes that one day he’ll see his brother again.
When Jake and his family go to stay at the Sanctuary to prepare for his sister’s wedding, the last thing Jake expects is to discover the whereabouts of his brother. He would be overjoyed, except that Blake is, well, to put it mildly, different. Jake learns that his brother is the victim of a strange curse, placed on his grandfather long before the twins’ birth. Now, time is running out to undo the curse and return Blake to his old self, and to the safety of his family.
First, Jake has to find out what happened all those years ago. Then he needs to solve the riddle of how to break the curse. Even then, he has to work hard to actually make the words of the riddle come true. And he has to do all this alone – he cannot enlist the help of his family.
A Slimy Secret by Janette Brazel is a fun combination of humour, mystery, self-discovery and exploration of family relationships. Kids aged nine to twelve will love the mix of humour and intrigue.
A Slimy Secret is a Banana Benders title from Banana Books, the children’s book imprint of innovative new Australian publisher, Otford Press.
A Slimy Secret, by Janette Brazel
Otford Press, 2002.
ISBN 1-877073-01 6