Barbara’s Best of 2017


Reviewer Barbara shares her picks for 2017….

Really Weird (WeirDo #8) – Anh Do

Really Weird is the 8th book in the popular WeirDo series by television presenter and comedian, Anh Do. Similarly to the previous books in this series, it bursts forth with exuberance, from the front cover with its moving holograms and an upside down face of a smiling Weir, through the lively telling of schoolyard antics and family escapades, accompanied by amusing line drawings.  This 8th book features the events of the school Grandparents’ Day and class barn dance. The book introduces Grandma Do who is eccentric and full of the joys of life. The beauty of WeirDo books is that they are of interest to a wide age range in primary school making them both an interesting and a manageable read for older struggling readers.


The Big Break (Tiny Timmy #6 ) – Tim Cahill

The Big Break is book 6 of the Tiny Timmy series, written by popular Socceroos player, Tim Cahill. It re-acquaints the reader with the likeable young soccer player, Timmy, and his travails on the soccer field and in life generally. In this book Timmy suffers an injury to his foot and the disappointment that he can’t play soccer for ten whole weeks.  Even though I am not a sports fan, I very much enjoyed the humour in this book and the general happy and lively tone. I especially enjoyed the likable and amusing characters.


Rodney Loses It! – Michael Gerald Bauer and Chrissie Krebs

Rodney is a rabbit who loves to draw. He becomes increasing agitated when he loses his favourite pen and, despite a thorough search, it can’t be found. But the observant reader will notice the missing pen tucked safely behind Rodney’s ear. The story is told in rhyme which has true rhythm and a cheerful, lively beat. The funny, cartoon style drawings illustrating Rodney’s exaggerated facial expressions, add to the humour and playful tone of the book. This picture book will be enjoyed by 4-7 year olds and the adults who read to them.


Meet reviewer Barbara Swartz…

I have worked as a Teacher Librarian and Children’s Librarian.  In the Teacher Librarian positions I saw how important leisure reading is for consolidating a child’s reading skills and improving their literacy. To select literature for the school library that the kids would enjoy, I needed to get to know popular children’s literature well – an aspect of the job that I thoroughly enjoyed.  I have carried this love of children’s literature into more recent roles as Children’s Librarian in public libraries and I get much satisfaction from introducing kids to a new author or series that they enjoy.  Reviewing books for Reading Time gives me an opportunity to share my enthusiasm for children’s literature and help readers find the perfect book for them.

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