Good Reading : February 2017
WOM word of mouth The Secret Horses of Briar Hill M Megan Shepherd Il I n Illustrated by Levi Pinfold t’s World War II, and many children from the cities near the coast have been evacuated to the countryside. Briar Hill is a special place, reserved for children who have an infectious, and often deadly, disease: tuberculosis. Emmaline is a special child. Upon her acuated to the cou arrival at Briar Hill, she immediately discovers that winged horses live in the mirrors and other reflective surfaces in the big house. No-one can see them except her. One day, one of the horses miraculously crosses over into Emmaline’s world, and it needs her help. It’s snowing, she’s only a little girl and the ‘stillwaters’ (as she The Sisters Saint-Claire Carlie Gibson Illustrated by Tamsin Ainslie AUSTRALIAN AUTHOR C ecile is the youngest of five girls. Her sisters go to the market every week but Cecile stays home. They think she’s too little to go with them. Every week, while her sisters are gone, Cecile bakes pies and cheesecakes and tarts and cakes for her family to share when her sisters are home again. One day she finally gets the courage to ask if she could go too. She wants to sell her tarts and cakes and pies and cheesecakes at the market. However, no-one seems interested in a little mouse’s cooking. Then a royal visitor comes to the market and something wonderful happens. Even little, unimportant people can achieve great things. This is a delightful story with beautiful illustrations that younger readers will love to read (or have read to them) over and over. There is even a recipe in the back for 60 GOOD READING FEBRUARY 2017 GOODREADINGMAGAZINE.COM.AU ca b a she finds an unexpecte YOUNGER READERS calls the disease) is slowly creeping up through her body. How can she make a difference? Luckily, she finds an unexpected ally in Thomas, the groundskeeper. This extraordinarily beautiful story, brought to life by the wonderful pencil drawings of Levi Pinfold, explores grief, illness, fear, friendship and hope. Are there really winged horses at Briar Hill, or are they all in the imagination of a deeply troubled child? Is our reality linked to other worlds and times, or is this the way this child’s psyche deals with her illness and her grief? Megan Shepherd leaves us wondering. ★★★★★ Walker Books $19.99 Reviewed by Wendy Noble Age guide 10+ children who enjoy experimenting in the kitchen. The only disappointment is that at times the rhythm of the poetry suffers a little, for the sake of making it rhyme. However, I’m sure young readers won’t mind that at all. ★★★ Allen & Unwin $19.99 Reviewed by Wendy Noble Age guide 4 o .
December 2016 - January 2017