Our August 2023 Book Picks

Our August 2023 Book Picks

Hey everyone, ready for a dose of book magic this August? We've rounded up some fantastic new children's books. No fuss, just your go-to guide for the latest reads. These are our top picks, and we're excited to share them with you. So, let's dive into August with some great stories in hand.

Picture Books

1 Bear by Mitchell Toy, Midnight Books

A tale of growing up and cherished childhood loves, reminding us how time slips away, paving the path for new beginnings. Change is the heartbeat of this story. Created by one of our favourite children's authors. Available Now, age 3+

2 Count The Stars by Raewyn Caisley, illustrated by Gabriel Evans, Walker Books

Award-winning creators bring us a STEM-themed picture book celebrating the joy of learning and the magic of math, as young Maddie seeks a kindred spirit. From counting daisy petals to stargazing at the observatory with new friend Priya, it's a tale of shared wonder and the beauty of numbers. Created by one of our favourite children's authors. Available now, Age 3+

3 In My Garden by Kate Mayes and Tamsin Ainslie, ABC Books Australia

Join bestselling authors Kate Mayes and Tamsin Ainslie on a global journey through children's gardens, where the essence of belonging and growth flourishes. From Japan's blossoming flowers to Australia's bush tracks, experience the love and sense of home these young explorers find in their diverse gardens, brought to life through vivid imagery and lyrical storytelling.  Available 30th August 2023, age 3+

4 The Concrete Garden by Bob Graham, Walker Books

Master storyteller Bob Graham delivers a heartwarming and hopeful tale of creative expression and community resilience. As children bring a concrete landscape to life with chalk drawings, "The Concrete Garden" beautifully conveys the power of friendship and finding light in even the darkest times, making it a touching post-pandemic read that inspires us to discover our inner brightness.  Available now, age 3+

5 Nature's Song by Robert Vescio, illustrated by Nicky Johnston, New Frontier Publishing

In "Nature's Song," a young girl embarks on a journey to find a special gift that connects the outdoors with her brother's indoor world. This enchanting tale celebrates the beauty and transformative influence of nature on our lives, inviting readers to embrace its mysterious wonders and its positive impact.  Available now, age 3+

6 Leaf-Light by Trace Balla, Allen & Unwin 

In this captivating graphic novel/ picture book, join Miri as she aids a rescued baby emu in finding its place in the world, fostering unexpected connections within her community. From the acclaimed creator of "Rivertime" and "Rockhopping," this tale beautifully celebrates friendship, breaking down barriers, and inspiring change, all while highlighting the uniqueness of each individual's journey. Available now, age 8+

7 I Spy Treasure! by Vikki Marmaras, illustrated by Binny Talib, New Frontier Publishing

Embark on an adventure with Captain Snarkle Tooth, a grumpy pirate with a secret treasure obsession. As Billy delves into the mystery, the tale explores the pirate's true intentions, unfolding a whimsical narrative about hidden sparkles and unexpected motives. If you enjoyed Vikki's previous work "Poppy, The Queen and the Seat," you're in for another delightful treat! Available now, age 3+

8 Last-Place Lin by Wai Chim, illustrated by Freda Chiu, Allen & Unwin

In this relatable picture book, Lin's enthusiasm for her first school sports day is dampened when she finishes last. Through the story, author Wai Chim beautifully captures the essence of endurance and resilience, reminding us that winning doesn't always mean coming first. The collaboration with illustrator Freda Chiu brings to life a reassuring celebration of the spirit to persevere, making it a touching read for young readers. Available now, age 3+

9 Granbad by Penny Tangey, illustrated by Peter Baldwin, University of Queensland Press

Meet Granbad, the unconventional grandad who rejects rules like screen-time limits but stands firm for saving the planet. In this heartwarming tale, when his forest protection protest falls short, he goes to great lengths to make a difference – proving that sometimes, bending the rules for a noble cause can be the best way forward.. Available now, age 3+

10 Caroline by Mark Wilson, Windy Hollow Books

"Caroline" reveals the inspiring journey of Caroline Chisholm, who made an impactful mark in Australia's history by aiding orphans, migrants, and destitute girls. Author Mark Wilson takes readers on a journey through her life of service, from her youth to adulthood, presenting a tribute to her remarkable achievements and an empowering narrative of female accomplishment. Available now, age 8 +

 

11 Do Penguin's Feet Freeze by Natural History Museum London, CSIRO Publishing

Delve into the intriguing world of nature with "Do Penguins' Feet Freeze?" – a captivating collection of questions and answers by the Natural History Museum, London. Packed with vibrant images, this book unravels curiosities like why rabbits eat their own poo, how polar bears stay warm, and whether birds can sneeze, revealing a host of fascinating facts that remind us that reality often outshines fiction. Available now, age 9 +

12 Let's Save The Great Barrier Reef by Catherine Barr, illustrated by Jean Claude, Walker Books 

"Let's Save The Great Barrier Reef" by Catherine Barr, illustrated by Jean Claude, is a captivating picture book that vividly portrays the vibrant underwater world of the Great Barrier Reef. This book not only introduces young readers to the reef's breathtaking beauty, from its coral gardens to its colourful marine creatures, but also emphasises the urgent need to safeguard this unique habitat from the threats of climate change, spotlighting its crucial role in our oceans and inspiring a call to action. Available now, age 5 +

13 Eat My Dust by Neridah McMullin, illustrator Luca Masciullo, Walker Books

"Eat My Dust" is an inspiring tale of Jean Robertson and Kathleen Howell, who defied conventions in 1928 to become trailblazers in mapping Australia. This true story follows their extraordinary journey as they race across the country, breaking land speed records and challenging gender norms, all while accompanied by their faithful companion, Barney the dog. Available now, age 5+

 

Books for Upper Primary/ Middle Grade Readers

1 The First Summer of Callie McGee by A.L Tait, Scholastic

In her final summer before high school, Callie seeks a change in her nerdy image during a holiday with family friends. As she investigates local burglaries with new allies Owen and Mitch, they uncover unexpected mysteries, including a possible ghost, while Callie's determination to find her missing friend Sasha reveals the true strengths of being herself. Available now, age 9+

2 Scar Town by Tristan Bancks, Puffin

In the aftermath of a submerged town, a missing father's mystery drives three friends – Will, Dar, and Juno – to explore a resurfaced house, uncovering bones and a hidden fortune. As they navigate dangerous pursuits and face adversaries, Will becomes consumed by the thought that the bones might hold the key to his father's disappearance, in a perilous quest to unveil buried truths.. Available now, age 11+

3 Dirrarn by Carl Merrison and Hakea Hustler, Magabala Books 

"Dirrarn" follows Mia's journey from "Black Cockatoo," as she faces the challenges of boarding school, far from her beloved Country. With her totem, the dirrarn (black cockatoo), guiding her, Mia and her friend Naya navigate new experiences and confront unending challenges, capturing the essence of place, identity, and the courage to stand for truth. Available now, age 10+

4 Magic Awry by Sarah Armstrong, Hardie Grant Children's Publishing

In the gripping sequel to middle-grade fantasy "BIG MAGIC," young magician Tulsi is determined to rescue magic from peril, even if it comes at a personal cost. After losing her powers during a performance, Tulsi embarks on a journey across parallel universes to confront rogue magicians stripping magic from women, led by a formidable adversary who holds a dark plan for her. As Tulsi faces the dilemma of sacrificing her own power to save magic, the stakes intensify in a world of enchantment and danger. Available now, age 9+

5 Ghost Book by Remy Lai, Allen & Unwin

In this captivating contemporary fantasy graphic novel, July Chen befriends a boy ghost stuck between realms, navigating a world of ghosts during Hungry Ghost month. Their adventure to return him to his body uncovers a shocking truth: for him to live, July must sacrifice her own life. Drawing inspiration from Chinese mythology, this hopeful tale weaves friendship and sacrifice against a backdrop of the unseen ghostly world, making it a resonant addition to Studio Ghibli enthusiasts. Available now, age 9+

6 Honey and the Valley of Horses by Wendy Orr, Allen & Unwin

Amidst mountains, a valley becomes the refuge for Honey's family and a herd of enchanted horses, escaping a sweeping illness. Isolated but resourceful, they sustain themselves until her father falls ill, prompting Honey to tap into her determination and courage, seeking a way out of their paradisiacal but trapped world. Available now, age 9+

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