It all started with The Pain. He officially came into my life exactly nine weeks and one day before my Year Ten Graduation Dance.
It was a Friday.
The thirteenth of the month.
Notice anything there?
Maggie Butt is not happy. She started the year determined that everything would go well – but with the end in sight, things seem to be going fro ad to worse. Not only has she failed to make any friends, but she doesn’t have a date for the graduation dance and her marks in English (her favourite subject) are plummeting. But that’s the worst of it. Her mother seems to be letting her new boyfriend – The Pain – into both her own life, and Maggie’s, whether Maggie likes it or not.
The Pain, My Mother, Sir Tiffy, Cyber Boy & Me is a funny novel about many of the difficulties of being a teenager – romance, friendship, self-image and family. Maggie has a lot going on with her parents’ divorce having led to her changing schools and not fitting in at the new one. Her mother’s blossoming relationship with a new boyfriend also causes disruption – not the least of which is his ability to scare off the only boy who’s ever shown an interest.
There are lots of laughs to be had but there are also more serious moments.
The Pain, My Mother, Sir Tiffy, Cyber Boy & Me, by Michael Gerard Bauer
Omnibus Books, 2016
The voice inside your head is
really a secret superpower!
If you listen, you can hear that
voice telling you all kinds of stuff.
There are some important things that every kids needs to know – like that the voice inside your ehad can be a really handy tool, even your best friend, and that you should be grateful for the good stuff in your life.
In Being You is Enough: And Other Important Stuff, author/illustrator Josh Langley shares eleven things that kids should know, each a life- affirming message spelt out in simple ways and accompanied with cartoon style illustrations.
Gently humorous but with a lovely message of self-acceptance, Being You is Enough: And Other Important Stuff is suitable for primary aged children.
Being You is Enough: And Other Important Stuff, by Josh Langley
Big Sky Publishing, 2016
I love me!
I love my eyes.
I love my nose.
I love the way my curly hair grows.
From mother-daughter dup Sally Morgan (author) and Ambelin Kwaymullina (illustrator), I Love Me is a lively celebration of being yourself – and loving yourself. From physical features, inside and out, to emotions and personality, text and illustrations show indigenous children loving being who they are.
The book aims to build self-esteem in indigenous and non-indigenous children and the bright illustrations and bouncy, prose, which uses rhyme, rhythm and repetition will engage youngsters and encourage them to join in the reading.
I Love Me, by Sally Morgan & Ambelin Kwaymullina
Fremantle Press, 2016
Principal Davies didn’t realise that banning tackling games would mean that our need to tackle would build up and build up until it had to come out.
It came out one recess on the EBO – the oval across the road from school.
I tackled Jack, even though tackling was banned. I broke the rules and I think I broke Jack’s arm.
Fadi is a big by with a big heart. Being a year older than everyone else, and with Samoan heritage and a love for rugby, Fadi feels like whenever he moves he breaks something. But staying still is too hard, and sometimes stuff just seems to happen.
Fadi is a book about getting into trouble, fitting in and learning to like yourself. Gently humorous, the story is also realistic, exploring issues which might confront contemporary children.
Aimed at chidlren in middle and upper primary, Fadi is part of the Stuff Happens series from Puffin Books and will engage both competent and reluctant readers.
Fadi, by Scot Gardner
Puffin Books, 2015
Available from good bookstores and online.