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Tag / Children’s Books

QBD Reviews: There May Be A Castle by Piers Torday

9781848668621A heartwarming middle grade story, There May be a Castle is full of adventure with knights, wizards, dragons, dinosaurs, a castle and a quest. A very enjoyable read, I loved it!

There May be a Castle focuses on eleven year old Mouse. Teased by family and friends for being so small, he was christened “Mouse” at a young age and the name stuck.

This novel takes place on Christmas Eve. It’s a white Christmas and Mouse’s mother has to drive through a blizzard to get Mouse and his two sisters to their grandparents’ house. An accident on the way sets Mouse off on an adventure to rescue his family.

Even though he is small Mouse proves himself to be very brave. Due to the trauma of the accident after being thrown clear of the car, Mouse keeps forgetting things and people. He knows something happened to him but can’t remember what or who was with him.

I loved how we had just enough information from alternate chapters to know what was happening to Mouse. We know that in previous years the family walked to their Grandparents’ house and what landmarks appeared on the way. Mouse uses these memories to help him find his way to the castle, even though he doesn’t remember clearly. He knows there’s a haunted forest, a dragon’s lair, a church graveyard and cairns to mark the way. The special toys he brought with him in the car keep him company and grow in his imagination to become real. In Mouse’s reality he is a knight travelling through a forest on his trusty steed Nonky, accompanied by Bar (the sheep that woke him) and Trex – chased by a fearsome nemesis The Pink Knight, a character from his favourite iPad app “Junior Joust”.

It is amazing what the human body can go through to survive and protect loved ones, also how our brains work to help in extreme situations. This reminded me a little of Gayle Forman’s young adult book If I Stay. Mouse physically goes on a journey to save himself and his family yet his mind plays tricks on him. A very emotional ending for both books, I was engaged all the way through.

~ Kerryn, QBD Northland

NEW: The Detective Dog by Julia Donaldson


det-dogThis is a brand new Julia Donaldson! How exciting!

This is a brightly illustrated book that left me with a sense of wonder. If any book will inspire the littlies to read, it'll be one about a book thief who discovers a library thanks to a book loving detective dog!

Sara Ogilvie's illustrations were fabulous! They just made the story to be honest. This is quite a long one for Julia Donaldson, but well worth the read!

QBD Reviews: Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief

9780141346809Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief introduces us to the world of Percy Jackson. Here, the gods of Olympus exist, along with all the monsters of Greek mythology and the offspring of the gods and mortals. These are demi-gods (or heroes).

Follow the 12-year old boy, Percy Jackson, who has been diagnosed with ADHD and dyslexia. Known as a problem child, he has been kicked out of nearly a school a year, with this current school being his 6th in 6 years. Everything changes one night when he and his mum are attacked by a Minotaur. Join Percy as he discovers his true parentage, uncover monsters and myth that have entered Western society, and uncover just who it is that is slowly rising from the Pits of Tartarus. Who is it that is getting ready to overthrow Olympus?

Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief is an incredible book. It is a simple and short read and yet it incorporates everything from Greek mythology, namely tragedies and monsters. Rick Riordan has weaved a myth masterpiece in this novel. Highly recommend for all lovers of fantasy and of mythology, as well as those who enjoyed Harry Potter, Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief is a shocking start to this mythical series.

Ta Da! New Mr Men and Little Miss characters.

Can you believe it has been 45 years since Mr Tickle was launched?

In honour of the 45th Anniversary of the Mr Men brand, Adam Hargreaves, the son of the late Mr. Men creator Roger Hargreaves, has come up with a new series of characters!


The new characters are Mr. Marvellous, who is good at most things he puts his hands to, the trendsetting Little Miss Fabulous, the thrill-seeking Mr. Adventure and Little Miss Sparkle, whose “shiny presence is… guaranteed to add a little pizzazz to any situation”.

Mr Adventure will be the first of the four launched in April 2017. We can catch some of his adventures on Youtube, where Mr Men have partnered with Heathrow Airport. Check out the video below to watch him check in for his big flight!

Babble like the BFG

Roald Dahl's absolutely squiffling children's novel The BFG is coming to cinemas on June 30!

rsz_9780141365428If you've never read it, The BFG centres around little orphan named Sophie, who is abducted in the middle of the night by a mysterious figure... "something very tall and very black and very thin". It turns out that her very tall abductor is a GIANT, and not just any giant, but a friendly giant. (Trust us, the friendly part is important).
Slowly the BFG (Big Friendly Giant) and Sophie become friends and he introduces her to a world she never knew existed.

Throughout the book the BFG uses a language all of his own, as he says “Words... is oh such a twitch-tickling problem to me all my life.”
A mish-mash of familiar words, it can be a little bit confusing to figure out what he means, so we've decoded a few for you.  Feel free to throw them into everyday babblements to make them more interesting!

Babblements: Conversations, e.g. "We is having an interesting babblement about the taste of the human bean."

Whoopsey-splunkers: Splendid, e.g. “How whoopsey-splunkers! How absolutely squiffling! l is all of a stutter.” 

Whizzpopper: To break wind, e.g. "Us giants is making whizzpoppers all the time! Whizzpopping is a sign of happiness."

Right or left?:  Right or wrong, e.g. “Meanings is not important, said the BFG. I cannot be right all the time. Quite often I is left instead of right.”

Delumptious: Delicious, e.g. "Delumptious fizzy frobscottle..."

Ucky-mucky: Messy, e.g. "You will be coming to an ucky-mucky end if any of them should ever be getting his gogglers upon you."

You can find more delumptious words the BFG uses in Roald Dahl's Gobblefunk Glossary located here.