Welcome back to another month with some more great reviews of Children’s and Young Adult’s books.


Cover of There's a Hippopotamus on Our Roof Eating CakeAnna Greenwood took a look at the classic There’s a Hippopotamus on Our Roof Eating Cake by Hazel Edwards. She talks of the pleasure of sharing books with a new generation:

“The language is simple and easy to understand, making the story accessible for all ages. The illustrations are bright and engaging. I remember enjoying this book as a child, and it’s lovely to be able to share it with my baby daughter.”

SacaKat reviewed the latest Mem Fox book, I’m Australian Too. She found herself completely engaged with this book, happy to be sharing it with her son:

“By the end of the second read through I had tears in my eyes and was getting choked up trying to finish the last page. My heart is humming and I need to tell the world about this book. READ IT TO YOUR KIDS.”

Jess at The Never Ending Bookshelf looked at two children’s books this month – Me and You by Deborah Kelly and Florette by Anna Walker.

Me and You is a picture book which takes an inclusive look at the special people (and animals!) and events in the life of a child. Written without specific references to names, genders or titles, children are able to fit the book to their own situations, memories and loves.

Florette is a story of new places and growing in those new places. Jess writes:

“It’s a book that speaks from the heart; a sweet book about a young girl’s desire for her beloved garden and the road she takes to establish one of her own. It’s a perfect learning tool for young kids, and one that will hopefully inspire others.”

Finally, HM Waugh took an in-depth look at Belinda Murrell’s Lulu Bell and the Birthday Unicorn, taking some time to pull it apart to see how it worked so well.

“This is cleverly-imagined and well-executed writing. It’s simple, in the most positive interpretation of that word. Nothing is there without reason, and everything ties together seamlessly.”

Young Adults

Elizabeth Fitzgerald reviewed The Impossible Story of Olive in Love by Tonya Alexandra, having some mixed feelings about this read. She balanced some of the good elements of the book – well thought out elements of the story and some interesting themes – with some aspects she found unsavoury, and reached the conclusion that this wasn’t really the book for her.

Cover of Valentine by Jodi McAlisterJess at The Never Ending Bookshelf and Rochelle Sharpe both took a look at Valentine by Jodi McAlister – the first book in a speculative fiction series. Both reviewers commented on how captivated they were by the book. Jess commented:

” . . .reading this book made me smile like an idiot, as only a book set in your own backyard can. There’s just something about having local settings that just enhances a book, don’t you think?”

Rochelle also wants more of this book:

“Valentine held me spellbound and I felt compelled to read it. Toward the end I was held on the edge of my seat wondering how it was all going to end. It did not disappoint.”

Finally Emily at A Keyboard and an Open Mind delved into Jaclyn Moriarty’s Colours of Madeline world which goes between worlds of Cambridge and the Kingdom of Cello. While reviewing A Corner of White, Emily said:

“The writing is beautiful and  lyrical. As I said, the story is quite character-driven . . . but I really enjoyed watching the relationships between various characters develop as they learned more about themselves and each other.” 

Emily also reviewed the second book in the series – The Cracks in the Kingdom

About Melina – Despite others hinting that I am supposed to ‘grow up’ at some point, books for young people continue to play a huge part in my reading life. This has served me well – as a teacher, book recommender, parent and resource designer. I’m currently writing novel studies as teaching resources, enjoying the rich world of picture books with my four-year-old and baby, revisiting some of my favourite authors and reviewing books