Our trip across Australia
Another fabulous Roland Harvey holiday book exploring some of the most spectacular landscapes of Australia, full of adventure, mishaps, and madcap activity. A hilarious, entertaining and delightful companion to At the Beach, In the Bush and In the City.
Roland Harvey is one of Australia's best-loved illustrators. In 1978, he established Roland Harvey Studios and began designing and producing greeting cards, posters and stationery with a distinctly Australian flavour. Ventures into publishing quickly followed. Some of his best-loved books include My Place in Space (with Joe Levine), Burke and Wills, The First Fleet, Sick As (with Gael Jennings) and Roland Harvey's Big Book of Christmas. His recent books include the best-selling At the Beach, In the Bush and In the City and his brilliant illustrations are also a feature of the Bonnie + Sam series - The Horses and Ponies of Currawong Creek, in collaboration with Alison Lester.
Ooh – I love a good travel book and Roland Harvey never fails to please. Henry, Penny, Frankie, their parents and the accident-prone Uncle Kev sure get around (they had a good time At the Beach, In the Bush and In the City).
Harvey documents their adventures through his characteristic detailed illustrations, crowding each spread so it forms a kind of picture puzzle to be enjoyed, similar to Where’s Wally. To the Top End takes children on a wonderful journey across our wide brown land from Tasmania, across Bass Straight, through the High Plains, via the Riverland, into the Flinders Ranges and over the great deserts of middle Australia. Children will delight in spotting characters and features hidden from view at first glance, with glorious, scattered, eye-swamping illustrations and the most deliciously curly text, wrapping its way around rivers, mountains and rocks. Among the puns and visual gags there is serious geographic information, and the endpapers provide a map of the whole continent on which to trace the trip from Tasmania to the Top End. I found this book too difficult for my prep class to enjoy, the pictures were very crowded and the text too small to read. But great fun for seven years and up as a family read-together session. When you've finished reading the book make sure you go back and see if you can find a football on every page.
This would be a great text to use when researching Australia and all of the beautiful landmarks that we have in our country. Children could also be inspired to make postcards of the glorious sights that they have seen and recall funny stories to make a class travel adventure series. It could also be used to creatively paint landscape images from photographs or a child’s imagination using sweeping brush strokes and various lines to represent the land, flora and fauna.
Rhiannon Neate, Don Bosco Primary School, VIC