Junior Newsletter
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Children's and YA book reviews and interviews

Aunty Fay Muir & Sue Lawson, illus by Lisa Kennedy, Magabala, May 2020, reviewed by Hannah Gardiner

Dream team Aunty Fay Muir and Sue Lawson, who previously brought us the excellent Nganga: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander words and phrases, have collaborated... Read more
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Feeling seen: Kay Kerr on ‘Please Don't Hug Me’

Kay Kerr’s YA novel Please Don’t Hug Me (Text, May) follows 17-year-old Erin as she relays life as a teenager with autism in letters to... Read more

Rocky and Louie
Phil Walleystack, Raewyn Caisley & Dub Leffler, Puffin, May 2020, reviewed by Thuy On

Siblings Rocky and Louie are as close as can be. Louie loves playing footy with his big brother and learning all about the Country they call home. Rocky shows Louie... Read more

Sometimes Cake
Edwina Wyatt, illus by Tamsin Ainslie, Walker, May 2020, reviewed by Thuy On

Audrey meets a lion carrying a purple balloon and asks him if it’s his birthday. ‘Sometimes,’ he responds, ‘but not today’. But considering that Audrey happens to like birthdays, she... Read more

Tiger & Cat
Allira Tee, Berbay, July 2020, reviewed by Bronte Coates

In this appealing debut picture book from Melbourne illustrator Allira Tee, two animals recognise the value of their close friendship. Tiger and Cat do everything together—exploring, dancing, eating delicious pink... Read more

The Year the Maps Changed
Danielle Binks, Lothian, May 2020, reviewed by Jacqui Davies

The Year the Maps Changed is Melbourne-based writer Danielle Binks’ debut novel. The year is 1999 and in small-town Sorrento, Victoria, 11-year-old Fred is lost within the complexity of a... Read more

Peta Lyre’s Rating Normal
Anna Whateley, A&U, May 2020, reviewed by Erin Wamala

Peta Lyre is an atypical girl living in a typical world. Her best mate says she has so many letters that they almost make up the alphabet—ADHD, ASD, SPD. Fiercely... Read more

Please Don’t Hug Me
Kay Kerr, Text, May 2020, reviewed by Charlotte Guest

At the suggestion of her psychologist, Erin writes letters to her absent older brother, Rudy. Erin is 17 years old, behind on her savings for Schoolies and freshly unemployed. There... Read more

When it Drops
Alex Dyson, Hardie Grant Egmont, May 2020, reviewed by Hannah Gardiner

Former triple j breakfast presenter Alex Dyson’s debut YA novel draws on his considerable knowledge of the Australian music industry—he has said that this book was inspired by the school-aged... Read more



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