Teachers Notes

We commision teachers notes written by professional educators designed to link in with the Australian Curriculum.

Each title below has teachers notes. Simply click on the title and select 'download teachers notes' at the bottom of the page.

Say Yes

Published: April 2017

A story about how the events surrounding the historic 1967 Referendum played out in the everyday lives of two young girls.

The Blue Cat

Published: April 2017

From the multi-award-winning author of The Red Shoe comes a haunting story about a boy who can't - or won't - speak about his past in war-torn Europe, and his friendship with a young Australian girl.

The Things We Promise

Published: March 2017

Gemma's older brother Billy made her a promise that he would ensure she looked fabulous for her first school formal. But his circumstances change dramatically and Billy's promise becomes the least of the family's concerns.

My Friend Tertius

Published: March 2017

A delightful and heartwarming picture book about a WWII code-breaker and his pet gibbon, from best-selling creators Corinne Fenton and Owen Swan.

When the Lyrebird Calls

Published: November 2016

A time-slip novel in which Madeleine finds herself transported back to 1900 Australia, where she befriends a family of girls and is witness to a family secret and a family tragedy.

Small Things

Published: September 2016

A stunning graphic novel from an extraordinarily talented illustrator. On the cusp of having everything slip from his grasp, a young boy has to find a way to rebuild his sense of self.

Freedom Swimmer

Published: September 2016

This incredible tale about two boys' swim from mainland China to Hong Kong in search of freedom from poverty and oppression is inspired by a true story.

Promising Azra

Published: August 2016

Azra's dreams of finishing high school in Sydney and going to university are threatened by her uncle's plans to marry her off to an older cousin she has never met - will she have to choose between her family and her happiness?

The Boundless Sublime

Published: August 2016

Ruby Jane Galbraith is an ordinary girl seeking peace in the wake of family tragedy. Her search leads her into a community that seems guided by love. And it's only after she's drawn into its web that she learns its sinister secrets.

Dragonfly Song

Published: July 2016

Abandoned by the priestess of the island at birth, Aissa is an outcast, surviving by her wits - until she joins the acrobatic bull dancers who are sent away to compete on the island of the Bull King. A gripping and powerful adventure by acclaimed author Wendy Orr.

Forgetting Foster

Published: July 2016

The powerful story of a young boy whose father develops Alzheimer's disease, from the highly acclaimed author of A Small Madness.

Game Theory

Published: June 2016

Jamie's sister has been kidnapped. And Jamie is convinced he can save her using the principles of game theory. But is strategy the best option when his little sister's life is at stake? A hugely compelling YA thriller.

Boomerang and Bat

Published: May 2016

The first Australian cricket team to tour England was a group of Aboriginal stockmen. This is their story.

The Pearl-shell Diver: A Story of adventure from the Torres Strait

Published: April 2016

Engaging and authentic historical fiction about one boy from the Torres Strait trying to work his way up in the pearl-shell industry.

Milo

Published: April 2016

A sweet and funny story about a city-dwelling dog, a day when everything goes wrong, a curious rescue and a surprising gift.

Dreaming the Enemy

Published: April 2016

Two young Vietnam War veterans who fought on opposing sides return home, struggling to recover from their experience. A moving story of trauma, resilience and the challenging road to recovery.

Rockhopping

Published: April 2016

The story of an eventful hike in Gariwerd (the Grampians), from the creator of the multi-award-winning Rivertime.

Maralinga's Long Shadow

Published: April 2016

The powerful story of Yvonne Edwards, artist and community leader, who lived on or near the Maralinga lands, and the cost of the fall-out for herself and her family from the nuclear tests in the 1950s.

The Family with Two Front Doors

Published: March 2016

This warm and engaging story, inspired by the author's own family, offers a glimpse into a life rich with tradition, celebration and love.

The Way We Roll

Published: March 2016

From the author of the award-winning The Dead I Know comes an urban 'bromance' with an unexpected twist, featuring a boy from the upper end of town who finds refuge and friendship pushing trolleys at the local supermarket and avoiding a troubling secret in his own past.

Me, Teddy

Published: March 2016

Exuberant and warm, this hugely appealing book stars the author's much-loved black labrador.

Elephant Man

Published: February 2016

Based on the famous true story of Joseph Merrick, Elephant Man is an unforgettable tale about being different, finding happiness in even the hardest circumstances, and discovering beauty inside everyone.

My Sister Rosa

Published: February 2016

What if the most terrifying person you'd ever met was your ten-year old sister? A spine-chilling psychological thriller from one of Australia's finest YA authors.

The Stars at Oktober Bend

Published: February 2016

A powerful, captivating story about Alice, who is reaching out to express herself through her beautiful-broken words, and Manny who is running to escape his past. When they meet they find the tender beginnings of love and healing.

Australia to Z

Published: January 2016

Juxtaposing words and images, the multi-award-winning author of The Island shines an uncompromising light on what it is to be Australian.

Theophilus Grey and the Demon Thief

Published: October 2015

Book one of a two-part intriguing mystery series set in the perilous back alleys of Georgian London. From the multi-awardwinning author of A Very Unusual Pursuit.

The Cat at the Wall

Published: September 2015

If you were given a second chance at life, would you have the courage to do the right thing? A captivating novel set on the West Bank, The Cat at the Wall combines Ellis's respected and unflinching realism with a hint of engaging magic.

In the Skin of a Monster

Published: August 2015

What if your identical twin sister was a murderer? Does that make you a monster too? A profound, intense, heartbreaking fantasy that tackles issues of fate versus free will, and whether you can ever truly know someone.

The Cut Out

Published: August 2015

An ordinary teenager's world turns upside down when he's mistaken for a ruthless young spy. An action thriller suitable for readers of Cherub or The Last Thirteen.

Lara of Newtown

Published: July 2015

A funny and heart-warming story about a cat finding a home from a uniquely talented and multi-award-winning author.

A Week without Tuesday

Published: May 2015

The world of story is a magical place - where almost anything can happen. Join Tuesday McGillycuddy and her dog Baxterr on another nail-biting adventure!

Prince of Afghanistan

Published: April 2015

After a rescue mission goes wrong, a young soldier and his dog find themselves alone in hostile territory. Will they survive the perilous journey back to base?

The Last Place

Published: April 2015

Jack is more powerful than ever and has control of the one person Danby truly loves, her brother Evan. Determined to free Evan and rid the world of the evil that is Jack, Danby hatches a risky plan - but will she pay the ultimate price to liberate those she loves?

Zafir: Through My Eyes

Published: March 2015

A gripping story of one child's experience of the civil war in Syria.

Emily's Tiara Trouble: The Anti-Princess Club 1

Published: March 2015

It's hard being a ten-year-old girl when everyone wants to turn you into a princess. Welcome to the lives of Bella, Grace, Chloe and Emily.

Moon at Nine

Published: February 2015

A devastating story of forbidden love set in post-Shah Iran from the internationally bestselling author of the Parvana series.

Eat the Sky, Drink the Ocean

Published: February 2015

A ground-breaking intercontinental collection of speculative stories, in both prose and graphic novel form, with contributors from India and Australia including Isobelle Carmody, Margo Lanagan, Nicki Greenberg and others of similar calibre.

And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda

Published: February 2015

The iconic song about the Battle of Gallipoli, written by Eric Bogle in 1972 at the height of the anti-war movement, re-imagined by esteemed children's illustrator Bruce Whatley.

Minton Goes!

Published: January 2015

One big book with all the Minton Goes! adventures, plus the story of Minton and the Hottest Boy who ever lived. Minton the spotty salamander loves things that move - and he finds just what he needs to make them. He's always keen for adventure, but his friend Turtle always worries that it will end in disaster. A fabulous story collection from the creators of Tashi.

The Year It All Ended

Published: September 2014

From one of our most gifted storytellers, a novel about the impact of war on those left behind, set in Australia and Europe in 1918-19.

Our Village in the Sky

Published: August 2014

From two outstanding creators comes a lyrical and poetic text and beautiful artwork celebrating the lives of children in a remote Himalayan village as they make their work into play.

One Minute's Silence

Published: August 2014

A moving and powerful story about the meaning of Remembrance Day, drawing on the ANZAC and Turkish battle at Gallipoli

Crikey and Cat

Published: July 2014

If the stars were blown out of the sky by a storm, what would you do? A beautiful new picture book from the amazing, three-time CBC-shortlisted author Chris McKimmie.

Razorhurst

Published: July 2014

Kelpie and Dymphna are accustomed to the mean streets of 1930s Sydney, but this is a day that will test their courage, their loyalty, and their ability to survive both the ill-intentions of the living and the ever-presence of the dead.

Emilio: Through My Eyes

Published: June 2014

A moving novel about one child's life in the middle of the drug war in Mexico.

No Stars to Wish on

Published: May 2014

A little boy's spirit shines amid some dark truths in this tender and memorable novel about being taken from home and put in an orphanage.

The Duck and the Darklings

Published: April 2014

Peterboy wants to find something special for his grandfather, but he finds a fallen duck in need of care. This is an extraordinary and totally enchanting story of friendship, hope and joy from two very talented, award-winning picture-book makers.

Rivertime

Published: April 2014

A gentle and beautiful book about slowing down and growing up, set on Australia's Glenelg River and featuring a ten-year-old boy and his uncle.

Naveed: Through My Eyes

Published: March 2014

A heartfelt story of a teenage boy living in the conflict zone of Afghanistan.

The Last Shot

Published: March 2014

Sixteen-year-old Danby has survived the telepathic outbreak that ravaged humanity, but now she's caught in a desperate battle for her own survival. and for the future of the world.

I Was Only Nineteen

Published: March 2014

A powerful and moving picture book about the Vietnam War based on the unforgettable song.

The Simple Things

Published: March 2014

A slice of life story for younger readers told with affection and humour about Stephen, a boy who doesn't quite fit in, and his elderly Aunt Lola. From the award-winning author of A Straight Line to My Heart.

Coming of Age

Published: February 2014

In this refreshing and fascinating collection, twelve Muslim-Australians - some well known, some not - reveal their candid, funny and touching stories of growing up with a dual identity.

Racing the Moon

Published: February 2014

Thirteen-year-old Joe Riley gets up to all sorts of mischief in this unsentimental portrait of Sydney during the Depression.

The Last Girl

Published: October 2013

The end of the world happened quickly. The sun still shone, there was no explosion - just a tsunami-sized wave of human thought drowning the world in telepathic noise as everyone's inner-most secrets became audible. Everyone's thoughts, that is, except sixteen-year-old Danby.

Amina: Through My Eyes

Published: September 2013

A moving story of one child's life in a conflict zone, in Mogadishu, Somalia.

The Vanishing Moment

Published: September 2013

If you could live a different version of your life, would you take the chance? From the award-winning author Margaret Wild, this spellbinding story places two young women at the turning point in their lives, and each must choose to accept the life she has, or to leap into one she might yet live.

My Dad and Me

Published: August 2013

A fun gift book for every dad.

Welcome to My Country

Published: August 2013

A wonderfully engaging and heartening account of a successful Aboriginal community based at a beautiful beach site in Arnhem Land

The Four Seasons of Lucy McKenzie

Published: August 2013

A gripping time-slip adventure set in a hidden valley. 11-year-old Lucy travels across the river of time to fight fires, battle floodwaters and discover the meaning of true friendship. 'Enchanting, exciting, and shimmering with magic, this is a gorgeous adventure from a master story-teller. I wanted to follow Lucy right through the wall.' - Kate Constable

Scarlett and the Scratchy Moon

Published: June 2013

A unique and beautiful picture book about a child's love for her pet dogs from the one and only Chris McKimmie.

Shahana: Through My Eyes

Published: June 2013

A moving story of one child's life in a conflict zone: Shahana, a young girl living in war-torn Kashmir.

Australians All

Published: June 2013

A lavish and comprehensive new history of Australia told through the lives of young people, from the Ice Age to the Apology. 'Nadia has performed an essential service to history and the young.' - Thomas Keneally

Song of the Slums

Published: May 2013

An absorbing, page-turning story about fame, changing fortunes and music, set in an alternative Victorian world, from the brilliant creator of Worldshaker.

Finding Serendipity

Published: May 2013

Tuesday and her dog Baxterr are swept up into the magical land of story, where they must sail a runaway boat, battle fearsome pirates, and find their way out of the Swamp of Doubt, all in the search for Tuesday's missing mother.

Jandamarra

Published: March 2013

The epic and tragic story of Jandamarra, Indigenous hero of the Kimberley told through text and illustrations. A story for all Australians, providing a unique insight into an extraordinary man and a powerful slice of history.

New Guinea Moon

Published: March 2013

A captivating coming of age story for younger teens, set in New Guinea around the time of independence.

Remembering Lionsville

Published: February 2013

Renowned artist Bronwyn Bancroft tells her inspiring story of growing up in country New South Wales. A unique picture book for the whole family.

The Fair Dinkum War

Published: February 2013

Artist David Cox recalls what it was like to be a child during World War Two, and his warm observations reveal a resilient quintessential Australian spirit. A companion to his much loved picture book The Road to Goonong.

My Life As an Alphabet

Published: February 2013

Candice Phee wants to bring light and laughter to those around her, and somehow she succeeds despite the bizarre mix-ups and the confusion she effortlessly creates. An uplifting comedy-drama from award-winning author, Barry Jonsberg.

Parvana's Promise

Published: October 2012

Parvana, now fifteen, is found in a bombed-out school and held as a suspected terrorist by American troops in Afghanistan. A stunning sequel to Parvana and Parvana's Journey.

Unforgotten

Published: September 2012

A breathtakingly beautiful book which, like Shaun Tan's The Arrival, will move and delight readers of all ages. 'Reading this book is like being quietly ushered into another dimension by winged strangers, a place beyond the tread of normal earth-bound language. Ephemeral as a feather, timeless as a rock, and as true as both, Unforgotten is a magical experience.' - Shaun Tan

Into That Forest

Published: September 2012

From one of Australia's foremost literary talents, this is an unforgettable and heartbreaking story about two young girls living in the wild with Tasmanian Tigers.

Louis Beside Himself

Published: August 2012

When a burglar jumps through the kitchen window one night, Louis knows he should get him in a wrestling-hold while he has the advantage, but his heart is hammering and his legs feel like wobbly air. A larger-than-life story from Anna Fienberg, author of the classic Tashi series and Horrendo's Curse.

On Two Feet and Wings

Published: August 2012

This amazing true story of a boy fleeing Tehran on his own during the Iran-Iraq War provides a powerful child's-eye view of political tumult, separation, survival, dreams and triumphs in a moving memoir that chronicles extraordinary times in an ordinary boy's life.

Alex and the Watermelon Boat

Published: June 2012

A brilliant picture book inspired by the Brisbane floods, from the one and only Chris McKimmie.

The Coat

Published: May 2012

Illustrated by Australia's leading picture-book artist, this is a surprising and delicious story that will lift you off your feet and whirl you away. A coat in a strawberry patch flies off with a down-at-heel man, and together they have the night of their lives.

Red

Published: May 2012

A gripping mystery unfolds in the aftermath of a devastating cyclone that leaves a young girl unable to remember her name or where she comes from . Vivid, compelling writing from popular, multi-award winning author Libby Gleeson.

Erebos

Published: March 2012

Are you playing the game - or is the game playing you? A highly addictive thriller about power, manipulation and revenge.

The Ink Bridge

Published: March 2012

A remarkable and gripping story about one refugee boy on a desperate journey from Afghanistan, and the Australian boy who befriends him.

The Best Day of My Life

Published: February 2012

An absorbing, emotionally engrossing story about a young Indian girl who has to survive by herself on the streets of Kolkata.

The Coming of the Whirlpool: Ship Kings 1

Published: November 2011

From the award-winning author of Praise and The White Earth comes a magnificent young adult series about dominion and defiance, set upon the grey seas of a strange and compelling world .

Darius Bell and the Crystal Bees

Published: November 2011

In this wonderful sequel to 2010 CBCA Children's Book of the Year award winner Darius Bell and the Glitter Pool, Darius and his friends solve a new problem - the disappearance of bees - and help their class win the Mayor's Prize!

The Little Refugee

Published: November 2011

Anh Do's inspirational story about his family's incredible escape from war-torn Vietnam and his childhood in Australia, told especially for children.

Crow Country

Published: September 2011

A gripping time-slip adventure, in the tradition of Ruth Park's Playing Beatie Bow.

A Straight Line to My Heart

Published: August 2011

A funny, poignant, heartwarming story of first love, first job, friends, family and the inevitability of change in the first summer out of school.

Only Ever Always

Published: August 2011

Does the world shape us, or do we shape the world? A suspenseful story of parallel realities - two girls in two worlds with two different ways to survive. 'Fascinating and absolutely memorable.' - Ursula Dubosarsky

The Road to Goonong

Published: August 2011

This glorious story of a bush childhood - growing up on the family farm with horses and animals, eccentric neighbours and a loving family - captures the enduring spirit of Australian country people.

Good Morning Mr Pancakes

Published: July 2011

An exuberant picture book from a unique talent featuring a girl who loves animals and a memorable holiday on Bee Island.

Vinnie's War

Published: June 2011

The story of a homeless boy who starts by losing everything, and - through his experience as an evacuee in World War II - finds friendship, vocation and a place to belong.

Playground

Published: June 2011

With historical and contemporary photographs, artwork by leading Indigenous artists, and new colour illustrations throughout, this compilation of Indigenous stories gives a fascinating insight into Aboriginal childhood, both traditional and contemporary.

Black Painted Fingernails

Published: June 2011

When James drives out west to do a teaching round, he has no idea that a girl with wild hair and flowing black dress will change his direction completely. A captivating story of tender new friendship and self-discovery.

Unlocked

Published: June 2011

For fans of Steven Herrick and Ellen Hopkins, a powerful and topical verse novel about school violence.

Against the Odds

Published: June 2011

An extraordinary novel about a young girl's response to her aid-worker father's disappearance in a war zone.

I Am Thomas

Published: May 2011

An inspiring, thought-provoking picture book about finding your way in the world, from the award-winning creators of The Great Bear and An Ordinary Day.

Liberator

Published: May 2011

This brilliant sequel to Worldshaker follows the changed fortunes of Col and Riff as the juggernaut rolls on. Now the Filthies are in charge, and it's the Upper Decks people who are victimised and reduced to a ghetto-like existence.

The Dead I Know

Published: May 2011

Aaron Rowe has dreams he can't explain, and memories he can't recover. But if he doesn't discover the truth about his hidden past soon, he may fall asleep one night and never wake up. A potent, intense, psychodrama that will keep you gripped to the very last page.

The Dream of the Thylacine

Published: April 2011

This arresting and beautiful picture book from Margaret Wild and Ron Brooks is a shimmering encounter with the Tasmanian tiger, a lament for a lost species, and a compelling evocation of the place of animals in Nature.

The Golden Day

Published: April 2011

A beautiful, haunting novel from the author of the multi-award-winning The Red Shoe. Set in 1967, and imbued with the atmosphere and psychological intrigue of Picnic at Hanging Rock.

Liar

Published: April 2011

Justine Larbalestier's brilliant CBCA short-listed YA novel has a truly compelling unreliable narrator who will have readers guessing until the very last page, and beyond.

Yellowcake

Published: March 2011

From the internationally acclaimed, multi-award winning author of Black Juice, Red Spikes and Tender Morsels - a new collection of evocative, moving and richly imagined stories.

Triple Ripple

Published: March 2011

Brigid Lowry's original fairytale with a modern twist will totally charm romantic girls from age 12 up. It's a clever story that combines a fairytale and a modern-girl's tale, and reveals the magic of the writer's creative journey.

Being Here

Published: February 2011

The bittersweet story of a girl and a boy, and a secret that was too real to hide. From the bestselling author of The Whole Business with Kiffo and the Pitbull.

No Safe Place

Published: February 2011

A heart-stopping adventure novel based on true-life experiences. From the bestselling author of the Parvana series.

Raven's Mountain

Published: February 2011

A gripping wilderness-adventure by the author of Nim's Island. Raven's sister and step-father are trapped under rocks on the mountain top, and their lives depend on Raven making it down the mountain to get help. But can she find the way?

Hiding Edith

Published: February 2011

The remarkable true story of Edith Schwalb, kept safe due to the courage of an entire village in France during the Nazi invasion in WWII.

From Kinglake to Kabul

Published: February 2011

Kinglake had one day of disaster with far-reaching effects; Kabul has endured 30 years of war. In this remarkable collection of young people's writing, students from schools in Kinglake and Kabul share their stories of resilience, courage and hope.

Shake A Leg

Published: October 2010

A unique picture book collaboration about having fun, sharing culture and the power of story and dance. A picture book to get the whole town dancing.

Hamlet

Published: October 2010

Richly imagined, this is an audaciously brilliant tour de force from the creator of the graphic novel adaptation of The Great Gatsby.

Mice

Published: September 2010

Even the meekest of mice have their breaking point.This provocative thriller will have you asking: What would you do if you were pushed to the limit?

India Dark

Published: August 2010

A strong and vivid novel based on the fascinating true story of a group of young Australian performers - children aged from seven to seventeen - who toured Asia and India early in the twentieth century before mounting a strike against their manager and precipitating a sensational court case.

Happy as Larry

Published: June 2010

The not-so-ordinary life of a boy named Larry, set against the great events of the world.

Two Peas in a Pod

Published: May 2010

Marvin and Violet have been friends since they were babies. They are like two peas in a pod. But then Violet moves away. With a unique Australian flavour, this story of friendship is both tender and truthful.

The City

Published: May 2010

Following on from the success of The Island, Armin Greder offers young readers and adults, a contemporary mother-and-son fable. Powerful and compelling.

With a Sword in My Hand

Published: April 2010

Marguerite's father is desperate for a son. Instead he's stuck with a feisty, stubborn, red-headed daughter who refuses to behave like a lady.

This exciting medieval romance-adventure story is based on historical fact about a 14-year-old heiress to Flanders called Marguerite Van Male.

Jameela

Published: March 2010

Based on a true story, this powerful, authentic novel explores the life of one girl in post-Taliban Afghanistan.

'A beautifully written story about a girl - and a country - struggling to overcome the devastation of war, an important book that should be widely read.' - Deborah Ellis

And Picasso Painted Guernica

Published: February 2010

Come face to face with an astonishing creative spirit in this beautiful book for children about Picasso, his journey as an artist and the creation of his iconic anti-war painting, Guernica.

Liar

Published: October 2009

Micah Wilkins admits she's a liar. But will murder be enough of a reason to stop lying? An extraordinary and original story that will have you grasping for the truth until the very last page.

Chinese Cinderella, The Mystery of the Song Dynasty Painting

Published: September 2009

From the internationally bestselling author of Chinese Cinderella and the Secret Dragon Society, this is a gripping historical fantasy set in the Song Dynasty and inspired by one of China's most famous paintings.

The Loblolly Boy

Published: September 2009

A gripping story about a boy who gains the power of flight, but loses touch with what makes him human. Is the cost of being a loblolly boy too high? Find out in this beautifully written novel for lovers of fantasy.

Mr Chicken Goes to Paris

Published: August 2009

From the creator of Old Tom, Horrible Harriet and Fiona the Pig comes the unforgettable and riotous Mr Chicken! What's in store for Mr Chicken in the City of Love, and how will the Parisians react?

The Big Picture Book of Human Civilisation

Published: August 2009

With stunning images and a child-friendly text based on the latest scientific research, the award-winning author of The Big Picture Book sets out the biggest milestones in human history since the last great Ice Age.

Vulture's Gate

Published: August 2009

It is 40 years into the future and the world is in turmoil. A plague has destroyed humans' ability to conceive females, or so Callum thinks until he meets Bo. A page-turning adventure unfolds as the pair rely on each other to survive a dangerous journey to a safe haven in the city of Vulture's Gate.

The Fury in the Fire

Published: July 2009

The unforgettable story of Sofia, a courageous young woman struggling to take care of her poverty-stricken family in Mozambique. This is the third novel about Sofia, which began with a terrible landmine accident in Secrets in the Fire, and continued into her teenage years in Playing with Fire.

Riding the Black Cockatoo

Published: June 2009

The inspiring true story of one man's reconciliation journey. All through his growing-up years, John Danalis's family had an Aboriginal skull on the mantelpiece; yet only as an adult did he ask where it came from and whether it should be restored to its rightful owners.

Hero of Little Street

Published: May 2009

Alive with vivid detail and exciting from start to finish, this beautiful graphic novel for younger readers is the perfect book to introduce children to the grand art of storytelling. It's a wonderful companion to The Boy The Bear the Baron the Bard and Midsummer Knight.

Cicada Summer

Published: May 2009

Eloise doesn't speak, but can she see into the past? An exciting and atmospheric mystery, poignant and gripping at the same time, exploring themes of family, friendship and grief.

Worldshaker

Published: May 2009

A brilliant fantasy that will hook you from the very first page, set aboard a huge ship-city in which the elites live on the top decks while the Filthies toil below. Strong writing, a vivid alternative world and characters you'll never forget.

Maralinga, the Anangu Story

Published: April 2009

An extraordinary illustrated history told from the Indigenous perspective and created through a series of workshops, extensive research and community consultation.

100 Years of Petrol Power

Published: April 2009

The fifth and final book in John Nicholson's Transport, Trade and Travel series for upper primary schoolchildren shows how Australia entered the Age of Oil, becoming reliant on petrol and diesel to power cars, trucks, trains, tractors, ships, machinery and aeroplanes - all essential to our economy.

Darius Bell and the Glitter Pool

Published: March 2009

The Bell family is in danger of losing their honourable name. Can Darius step up to the challenge and uphold it? This wise and wonderful won the 2010 CBCA Book of the Year: Younger Readers Award.

The 10PM Question

Published: February 2009

A warm, surprising, real and intelligent novel you will fall in love with. Frankie Parsons is twelve and has a rodent voice of worry nibbling in his head. His new friend - colourful, creative, talkative Sydney - has relentless, unavoidable questions of her own that force Frankie and his family to face up to things that have lain dormant for years.

A Small Free Kiss in the Dark

Published: February 2009

Two young boys, an old tramp, a beautiful lost dancer and her baby - rag-tag survivors of a sudden war - form a fragile family holding together in the remnants of a fun fair. This is a vivid, poetic story about life in the margins and the power of empathy and imagination to triumph over adversity.

The Diary of Laura's Twin

Published: February 2009

A mysterious diary links modern-day Laura to Sara, a Jewish girl fighting to stay alive in the Warsaw Ghetto. A compelling and moving coming-of-age novel that draws upon history to resonate with the present day.

Shifty

Published: September 2008

'People say I'm shifty and not to be trusted . . . I'm getting into trouble without even trying.' A page-turning story about an unforgettable character, full of surprises and warmth. 'Witty, fast, makes you think.' - Sam, 16.

Special Kev

Published: August 2008

From a unique and brilliant imagination comes the story of Special Kev and his eleventy million cousins. All great children's literature has some element of danger and mischief, and this new story takes you right to the heart of what it is to be a child.

Steam, Steel and Speed

Published: August 2008

The fourth book in John Nicholson's fascinating series about Transport, Trade and Travel in Australia takes us back to the days of Australia's industrial revolution, with steam-powered railways, mines and factories speeding up travel and production of goods.

Screw Loose

Published: July 2008

This laugh-out-loud, original and chaotic tale of teenagers, dolls, dogs, football, baklava, first love, new love and one helluva party is the perfect book for people who never quite go about things the right way.

The Big Picture Book of Environments

Published: June 2008

Using simple words accompanied by plenty of photos, maps and fact boxes, and drawing on the latest scientific research, the award-winning author of The Big Picture Book explores the effects of changing climate on environments around the world.

Midsummer Knight

Published: June 2008

Book 2 in the brilliant Boy Bear series. A brave bear and his daring friend stage a dramatic royal rescue in a magical faerie kingdom.

Ironbark

Published: June 2008

A compelling novel about a powerful relationship between a troubled teenager and his grandfather, set in the Tasmanian Wilderness. 'A great read for all teenagers.' - Robert, 16

I'm Still Awake, Still!

Published: May 2008

A comforting bedtime story AND an audio CD! The story and songs are warm, fun and full of affection; guaranteed to leave children feeling happy and safe in the world.

Mahtab's Story

Published: May 2008

The vivid and compelling story of a young girl fleeing Afghanistan with her family and their journey to Australia. Inspired by a true story.

Chelonia Green Champion of Turtles

Published: March 2008

Chellie loves the beautiful green turtles on her tropical island home. So when they are threatened, she does everything she can to save them.

Wool, wagons and clipper ships

Published: February 2008

This third book in John Nicholson's fascinating series about Transport, Trade and Travel in Australia takes us back to the days of sheep stations as large as Scotland, bullockies slogging along muddy tracks, clipper ships racing each other to overseas wool auctions, cameleers in the outback, and Cobb and Co. coaches linking settlements around the country.

True Blue?

Published: January 2008

A collection of some of the best Australian writing, both old and new, from across the continent, which reminds us of our heritage and shows we have much to be proud of.

Cold Skin

Published: September 2007

First love, sexual awakening, murder, cowardice, vengeance and forgiveness . . . these are the powerful ingredients for Steven Herrick's gutsiest book yet; a page-turning read for teenage boys and girls; a story about father-son relationships and the many ways of being a man.

Cedar, Seals and Whaling Ships

Published: August 2007

The second book in John Nicholson's valuable Transport Trade and Travel series explores the developing technology and economy of Australia at the hands of the new white settlers: whaling, sealing, farming, timber-felling, ship-building, exploring and transporting goods by land and sea.

Pagan's Daughter

Published: July 2007

The award-winning Pagan Chronicles are international bestsellers. And the action-packed epic continues with the adventures of Babylonne - as feisty, funny and irresistible as her famous father. 'The quality and pace of Jinks's writing is flawless . . . a triumph.'- Sydney Morning Herald

Solo

Published: July 2007

Alone at night in the bush, alone with her demons - what will this city girl discover about herself and her place in the world? An intense story of psychological struggle, from an acclaimed writer of YA fiction.

The Killer's Tears

Published: June 2007

An international award-winner, this haunting novel set in Chile reaches into the souls of a murderer and an innocent young boy, turning readers' expectations of hero and villain on their heads. Deeply moving, outstanding writing.

Night of the Fifth Moon

Published: May 2007

A haunting story of secrets and adventure, set in the ancient pagan world of the Druids, from the writer of the popular Viking Magic series.

Diego! Run

Published: May 2007

A true-to-life adventure story about Diego, a gutsy young Bolivian boy, who needs all his ingenuity and courage to stay alive and help his family. Another brave, revealing novel from the author of the best-selling 'Parvana' books.

Maisie Moo and Invisible Lucy

Published: April 2007

The funny and tender story of Maisie who lives with her parents in the Gone Bonkers Discount Palace. She shares her troubles and joys with her invisible friend, Lucy, and longs for her father who is often away driving his truck. From the creator of Brian Banana Duck Sunshine Yellow.

Battle Order 204

Published: April 2007

The riveting true story account of a young WW2 pilot's heroic journey, illustrated throughout with fascinating photographs, maps and excerpts from his log books.

To the Boy in Berlin

Published: April 2007

A funny, suspenseful novel, bursting with character and ideas: a quirky detective story about righting the wrongs of the past and fighting injustice in the present; a touching story of friendship, football and the power of the Internet.

Going Bush

Published: March 2007

A journey of friendship and harmony to inspire all Australians and a landmark publication from an acclaimed team. Nadia Wheatley and Ken Searle help sixteen children from eight schools in south-west Sydney explore their local environment and work collaboratively on art and writing. A model for the way harmony can be shared across the whole of Australian society.

Songlines and Stone Axes

Published: February 2007

A groundbreaking book for children about the fascinating networks of trade and ceremonial exchange in pre-European Australia. John Nicholson's lively curiosity, clear text and detailed illustrations and maps make this complex subject accessible to any age group.

Sold

Published: February 2007

The heart-wrenching story of Lakshmi, from Nepal, who is sold into prostitution at the age of 13, and kept captive in 'Happiness House' - where she not only survives, against all odds, but triumphs. Now a film staring Gillian Anderson.

Once Upon a Picture

Published: February 2007

Visually stunning. Paperback edition of this unique picture book - an exciting way to introduce children to art and an excellent prompt for creative storytelling.

Could You? Would You?

Published: December 2006

A book of whimsical pictures, questions and ideas to tickle young children's imagination, to get them thinking, talking, drawing, writing and exploring the world. What do you look like? Do you have a round nose, three eyes, pointy ears? Where do you live? By the sea, up high, in a house your parents built, in a teapot? Does your house have a secret tunnel?

Midsummer Knight

Published: September 2006

A brave bear and his daring friend stage a dramatic royal rescue in a magical faerie kingdom. An enchanting companion to the highly acclaimed The Boy, the Bear, the Baron, the Bard. Sometimes you don't need words to tell a story.

The Secret Life of Maeve Lee Kwong

Published: September 2006

Where do you turn when your family is tragically torn apart, your close friends fall away, and your long-lost father is out of reach? Where do you fit when you're part Irish, part Chinese, part Australian? A warm-hearted story about teenage life in Australia now.

Clubs

Published: August 2006

Award-winning and innovative, original and funny, Clubs is the first in a series of Lolly Leopold books. In this story, Lolly is searching for a Club to truly belong to.

Lonesome Howl

Published: August 2006

Lonesome Howl is a taut and tender thriller: a suspenseful adventure, a drama of two different families, a love story and a journey of self-discovery.

Listening to Mondrian

Published: June 2006

Nadia Wheatley's award-winning and critically acclaimed collection, The Night Tolkien Died, was first published in 1995. Listening to Mondrian brings six of these stories and an additional two new stories to another generation of readers in a stylish new edition.

My Big Birkett

Published: June 2006

By turns hilarious and bittersweet, this fresh, engaging novel illuminates the hidden corners of suburban life, love and friendship.

Finding Grace

Published: June 2006

Told by sassy 18-year-old Rachel, this is a suspenseful, compassionate, yet laugh-out-loud funny story about looking after a woman with brain damage - and about tasting love, finding grace and getting a life.

Dreamrider

Published: June 2006

From the author of The Whole Business with Kiffo and the Pitbull and It's not all about YOU, Calma comes an intense, confronting, unforgettable novel to challenge our assumptions about bullying, coping strategies and mental health.

The Happiness of Kati

Published: May 2006

A bestseller in Thailand, this poignant and beautifully written novel is the story of a 9-year-old girl whose mother is suffering from an incurable illness. Kati's spirited response to the challenges she faces and the evocative Thai setting make this poetic novel especially memorable.

Brian Banana Duck Sunshine Yellow

Published: April 2006

A wonderful, innovative, quirky picture book about a child's search for identity and the need to belong - and a glorious celebration of the colour yellow.

Zarconi's Magic Flying Fish

Published: March 2006

An exciting story of discovery, change and identity, with all the drama of life under the big top.

Dear Mr Sprouts

Published: March 2006

Told entirely through letters between a city girl and a country boy, this is a totally engaging story that is simple to read but rich in content, with themes of growing up, loss, handicap, migrant experience, friendship, love that leads to marriage, and the greening of the land.

Australia Locked Up

Published: February 2006

A clear, honest, thought-provoking account of punishment and imprisonment in Australia, from the 'open jail' of early Sydney to today's detention centres, by our most respected author/illustrator of non-fiction for young people.

Mimus

Published: October 2005

A gripping medieval adventure story, bristling with sparkling wit and highly acclaimed in Germany for its 'almost unbearable suspense'. Shortlisted for the prestigious German Youth Literature Prize.

A Prayer for Blue Delaney

Published: September 2005

A Prayer for Blue Delaney follows the outback adventures of orphaned Colm, who runs away from the cruelties of Bindoon Boys' Home and goes in search of a family of his own. Set in the 1950s.

It's not all about YOU, Calma

Published: September 2005

The sequel to the hilarious yet poignant The Whole Business with Kiffo and the Pitbull. Laugh-out-loud humour with a strong beating heart and a sting in the tail.

Mighty Murray

Published: August 2005

A fascinating, multi-faceted account of Australia's greatest river system, past, present and future, with many stories about the people whose lives have been bound up with the Murray.

The Glory Garage

Published: July 2005

A collection of true stories that present a fascinating insight into a culture that remains mysterious to many non-Lebanese Muslims. Warm, provocative, funny and poignant, these tales of family and community life, contradictions and customs, are a vivid insight into an exotic and vibrant culture.

When I was little, like you

Published: June 2005

With evocative words and stunning pictures, Mary Malbunka tells her rich story of growing up in the early days of the Papunya settlement in central Australia, going bush with her family and learning about culture and life. A picture book for all ages.

The Big Picture Book

Published: April 2005

Four billion years of evolution in 48 pages, told in simple words and stunning images, using the latest scientific research. A must for adults as well as children.

Slaughterboy

Published: March 2005

A darkly compelling historical fantasy, for teenagers and adults, about an orphan boy's life of scavenging, conniving and survival against the odds in the villainous world of a medieval city.

The Heaven Shop

Published: February 2005

Compelling and uplifting, The Heaven Shop is a contemporary novel for young people that puts a very real face on the African AIDS pandemic. Binti is a complex character who readers will never forget.

Walking with the Seasons in Kakadu

Published: February 2005

This sumptuous book invites us to closely observe the birds, plants and animals that inhabit the unique environment of Kakadu, through an understanding of the six Aboriginal seasons and their characteristics.

Becoming Billy Dare

Published: December 2004

Becoming Billy Dare follows the life of a feisty Irish boy who runs away to Australia and finds his vocation as an actor in the colourful theatres of Melbourne, around the time of Federation.

Guitar Highway Rose

Published: November 2004

Part love story, part road story, Guitar Highway Rose is a witty novel of first love, adventure and being fifteen.;

By the River

Published: August 2004

A memorable YA novel about the tough and tender sides of growing up in a small country town. Fourteen-year-old Harry has a knack for wriggling out of trouble, but escaping the constraints and memories that keep him trapped is not so easy, until it's a matter of life or death.

Chinese Cinderella and the Secret Dragon Society

Published: August 2004

The companion to the well-loved and internationally bestselling Chinese Cinderella, Chinese Cinderella and the Secret Dragon Society is a tale of high adventure and friendship, set in China during the Second World War.

Kalpana's Dream

Published: June 2004

When Neema's great-grandmother Kalpana leaves her village in India to visit her family in Australia, Neema is not sure how to be friends with her, but a boy on a skateboard brings them together, and they both find something they've long forgotten. Judith Clarke writes with humour and insight, and introduces a teacher known as the Bride of Dracula!;

The Boy, the Bear, the Baron, the Bard

Published: May 2004

A brilliant and captivating wordless picture book for ages 6 + about an ordinary boy on an extraordinary adventure to Shakespeare's London, by the winner of the prestigious Kate Greenaway medal.

Stormriders

Published: April 2004

This third and final book in the popular Viking Magic series, like its predecessors Runestone and Wolfspell, mixes adventure and magic with authentic Viking life and lore to create a breath-taking story for boys and girls 9-12.

The Whole Business with Kiffo and the Pitbull

Published: April 2004

Part quirky journal, part detective fiction, this wild and witty novel is a laugh-out-loud comedy about two unlikely friends who are drawn into a dramatic series of events through their mutual mistrust of their new English teacher.

A Company of Fools

Published: March 2004

From the best-selling author of Parvana and Parvana s Journey comes an extraordinary story for young readers, set in fourteenth century France at the time of the Plague; a story about friendship, courage and the importance of resisting hypocrisy and despair.

Fox

Published: February 2004

This sophisticated, multi-award winning picture book goes to the heart of human relationships.

The Ballad of Cauldron Bay

Published: February 2004

Funny, engaging and wise, this novel from the one and only Elizabeth Honey is the third adventure involving Henni and the Stella Street mob. On holiday in a remote old house by the beach, Henni finds that being a teenager is more complicated than being a kid.

The Moon in the Man

Published: February 2004

A popular bouncing-on-the-knee, joining-in, happy times, make-'em-laugh picture book of nutty rhymes for the very young, from one of Australia's favourite children's authors. New paperback edition.

Bridie's Fire

Published: November 2003

Bridie's Fire is the tale of a fiery Irish girl who leaves Ireland to find a home for herself in goldrush Australia.

Mister Monday

Published: September 2003

Book one in a blockbuster series, The Keys to the Kingdom, by the internationally acclaimed Garth Nix. Moving between our familiar world and bizarre other realms where nothing is predictable, Nix delivers a thrilling adventure-fantasy of breathtaking scope and ingenuity.

Watch Out for Jamie Joel

Published: August 2003

A courageous novel - honest, compassionate and wry - about what really goes on in a tough high school. Told alternately from the point of view of the most troublesome student (a difficult but astute girl) and the deputy principal (a sympathetic but overworked man), this story explores dangerous boundaries and reveals uncomfortable truths about parents, students and teachers.;

Papunya School Book of Country and History

Published: July 2003

Multi-award-winning, The Papunya School Book of Country and History is a unique and fascinating account of the history of Western Desert communities from an Indigenous perspective.

Hana's Suitcase

Published: July 2003

An international bestseller and remarkable true story. When Hana's suitcase arrives from Germany at the small Holocaust education centre in Japan, all the children who visit want to know about Hana. When Fumiko Ishioka, the centre's curator, decides to find the answers, she embarks on a journey of discovery across Europe and North America, and seventy years of history.

Wolfspell

Published: April 2003

This second book in the best-selling Viking Magic series combines adventure, magic and authentic historical detail to deliver a riveting junior fantasy in which the young heroes, Oddo and Thora, join forces and make a dangerous journey to foil a greedy neighbour and save their own families from eviction.

Walking Home with Marie-Claire

Published: October 2002

A story about the friendship between 12 year old Pauline ('PJ'), and a daring, unpredictable new girl, Marie-Claire, whose instinct for adventure leads them both into trouble

Endangered!

Published: August 2002

A fascinating look at endangered animals and what zoos and wildlife organisations are doing to increase the chances of survival for a number of species.

The State of the Planet

Published: August 2002

;Now in paperback.;A 'condition report' on the state of the world's environment, arranged in four chapters: earth, air, water, energy.;

Astrid Spark, Fixologist

Published: July 2002

An electro-dynamic adventure about Astrid Spark, the girl who can fix anything with her incredible magnetic fingers!

Flytrap

Published: May 2002

Nancy wants so much to be the centre of attention at school that she makes up a story - a wish, really. But with the help of stories from both sides of her family - white Australian and Aborginal - she learns something about what is true for her, and what she herself has to offer.

Runestone

Published: April 2002

A fantasy adventure about a boy and a girl in Viking times, full of magic, humour, vivid characters and colourful detail.

A Step from Heaven

Published: April 2002

When Young Ju's family leave Korea to live in America they think all their dreams will come true, but customs and language are so different that Young Ju must defy tradition in order to make a new life.

Njunjul the Sun

Published: March 2002

A 16-year-old Aboriginal boy leaves his family and home for the big city, and as he struggles to make sense of his experience he realises that he must have the knowledge of his own people and culture in order to know who he is, and to find his direction.

The Moon in the Man

Published: March 2002

A popular bouncing-on-the-knee, joining-in, happy times, make-'em-laugh picture book of nutty rhymes for the very young, from one of Australia's favourite children's authors. New paperback edition.

Parvana

Published: January 2002

Based closely on real life, this is the exciting and inspiring story of Parvana, a young girl growing up in Afghanistan, as she struggles to make a life for herself and her family under the harsh rule of the Taliban.

Jinx

Published: October 2001

Jen is desperate for life to begin, but her first love relationships are so devastating that she believes she is jinxed.

Papunya School Book of Country and History

Published: September 2001

Multi-award-winning, The Papunya School Book of Country and History is a unique and fascinating account of the history of Western Desert communities from an Indigenous perspective.

Echidna Mania

Published: September 2001

Another close encounter of the third (fourth and fifth) kind from one of Australia's zaniest children's authors.

Boys' Stuff

Published: August 2001

Teenage boys tell us what they think about growing up, friends, sex, sport, drugs - no holds barred.

Building the Sydney Harbour Bridge

Published: August 2001

The inside story of a national icon.

Yoss

Published: June 2001

Yoss, Odo Hirsch's first novel for adults of all ages, tells the dramatic, haunting tale of an innocent village boy's encounter with the corrupt life of a mediaeval town.

Market Blues

Published: February 2001

A timeslip adventure novel about a boy who goes busking at the market and finds himself transported back to a century ago.

Squiggle, Diddle, Plop!

Published: August 2000

This happy and energetic book celebrates the colour and uniqueness of Australian animals and, with characteristic Australian irreverence, their poo (often the only visible sign of animal inhabitation in the bush!).

The State of the Planet

Published: July 2000

;Now in paperback.;A 'condition report' on the state of the world's environment, arranged in four chapters: earth, air, water, energy.;

Remote Man

Published: May 2000

Elizabeth Honey skilfully combines humour, adventure, user-friendly language and thought-provoking themes. Remote Man is great entertainment, with depth and heart.

Fox

Published: April 2000

A magnificent and arresting picture book that goes to the heart of human relationships.

Who's Running This Country?

Published: February 2000

Now in paperback, this is a clear, readable explanation of the machinery of government in Australia and of the people and processes involved, written for upper primary and lower secondary students but likely to prove valuable to many an adult as well.

Holes

Published: January 2000

In this wonderfully inventive novel, Louis Sachar has created a plot that tangles and untangles, holding the reader in glorious suspense right up to the very end.

Fishing for Islands

Published: August 1999

Now in paperback: a description of the boats used in South-East Asia and the South Pacific, from rafts to simple dugouts to double-hulled voyaging canoes to gloriously carved war canoes.

Tough Stuff

Published: June 1999

A collection of true stories about kids and courage. Some of them are extraordinary kids - high-born or super-intelligent or super-talented - and some are ordinary kids who do extraordinary things like saving a life or leading a crusade.

A Home Among the Gum Trees

Published: May 1999

A survey of Australian housing

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