Good Reading : September 2006
Octavius O’Malley and the Mystery of the Exploding Cheese Alan Sunderland Inspector Octavius O’Malley is a rat – but don’t hold that against him! His investigation of the bombed cheese factory plunges him into a dangerous adventure involving violent kidnappings, nar row escapes, a dangerous train jour ney and a plot to exter minate rodent-kind forever. As the case unfolds O’Malley is challenged to reconsider his prejudices as he finds himself allied with his traditional enemies, the notorious River Road Mouse Gang. This is Sunderland’s fourth book for children and the first in a series of O’Malley adventures. If your children enjoy a fast-paced mystery laced with humour and delightful illustrations, they will love this. ★★★ HarperCollins $14.99 Reviewed by Wendy Noble Age guide 8+ Allie McGregor’s True Colours Sue Lawson What is wrong with Allie McGregor? Why does she sneak out through her bedroom window, when she has been grounded? What makes her fight with her best friend? Why is her life so difficult? Is it just her gross brother, or her little sister’s obsession with stinky mice? Perhaps, as her father tells the public on his morning radio show, it’s her hor mones. Or is it something else? Becoming a enager is always fficult, but it is a inefield when extra ress is placed on a amily due to a life- hreatening illness. awson demon- trates her insight nto the teenager’s hopes and fears by writing this story with both sensitivity and a great sense of fun. ★★★★ Bl ack D og Books $16.95 Reviewed by Wendy Noble Age guide 10+ Candyfloss Written by Jacqueline Wilson Illustrated by Nick Sharratt It’s Flossie’s birthday and as well as all the presents wrapped in shiny silver paper, Mum and Steve have another big surprise for her. They’re shifting to Australia for Steve’s work and Floss is expected to go with them. But Floss loves helping her dad every weekend in his greasy spoon café, serving bacon and eggs and chip butties. And when they’re not there they’re at the local fair with the magical mer ry-go-round and the yummy fairyfloss. Floss also loves her teacher, Mrs Horsefield, and her best friend Rhiannon so she makes the very difficult decision to stay at home with her dad. Dad is a bit of a loser. His dilapi- dated café is losing customers fast and there are so many bills to pay, but he d ss muddle along until one awful day disaster strikes and they are left homeless. Despite the ramas, this book is lighthearted and ntertaining look at mily life with the omise of more ppiness ahead. I did ve trouble equating ss’s love of mer ry- rounds, cuddly toys all things pink with her mature way of thinking and speaking but I’m sure our young readers will put Floss’s age just where they want it to be. ★★★ Doubleday $32.95 Reviewed by Merle Morcom Age guide 8+ younger readers word of mouth beautiful picture book.’—Sydney Morning Herald The award-winning tale of patience rewarded.