Sunday, February 12, 2012

Two exciting new books!

Ophelia Wild: Secret Spy by Elena de Roo

Listen ... a rustle - it comes from inside.
So that's where they're waiting;
she flings the door wide.

A client? Just one.
He seems a bit small,
but a small one is
better than no one at all.

I'm Albert.
Your headquarters look really neat.
Can I stay till they've gone?"
Albert studies his feet.

Ophelia frightens off the bullies beneath the tree hut for Albert. Afterwards, she decides that spying is tough on her own. She might need someone to answer the phone if she goes off on a mission to space. So new boy Albert gets to assist in her cases. In their next case they work out why pie sales have dropped when they're so good to eat. And why Ollie has disappeared and who's been eating their jam.

A delightful cheeky first chapter book for 5-7 year olds written in rhyme.  A great read aloud.  Elena has captured two unique characters: Ophelia - mischievous but kind and Albert - shy but determined. The other characters in the story are also well rounded - they might appear mean but they show their soft side too, when given a chance.  This book will be a favourite in Junior school.

This is Elena de Roo's second book for the retail market. Her first 'The Rain Train'  won a CJ Korean 3rd Picture Book Award, and a Storylines Notable Picture Book award in 2011.  She writes poetry and educational articles/books from her home in Auckland.
79 pages, with black and white illustrations by Tracy Duncan. ISBN: 978-1-921529-67-2
RRP $20.50

Made with Love by Melinda Szymanik, illustrated by Gabriella Klepatski

Mama was baking spicy gingerbread
biscuits. She kept back some
dough for Sam and Penny to make a
ginerbread woman.

The children peered through the oven door as
their gingerbread woman stretched and yawned.
"Should she be doing that?" they asked.
"Of course," Mama replied.
"It's the special ingredient in the mixture."

The two children have a scrumptious lunch of sandwiches, fruit and biscuits but leave the special gingerbread woman on the table.  The food whizzed in their stomachs and made them fizz. Their mother called them to go outside where they jumped and bounded. Then they built a special snowman and left him outside. At the stroke of midnight when anything can happen, the little gingerbread sprang up from the table and fell head over heels in love at the magical sight made out of snow. Can a snowman outside and a gingerbread woman inside ever get together? Or are they destined to be apart?  It's amazing what can happen when things are made with love!

Melinda's heart-warming message of 'When you make things with love something special is bound to happen' will generate lots of discussion with Kindergarten and Junior School children.  They'll also enjoy the story being read aloud and looking closely at the pictures. Warning: leaves a warm fuzzy feeling inside. You can even make your own 'Made with Love' gingerbread people - with a recipe printed out on page 1 (so you cannot miss it). A must-have for Kindys and Junior Primary school classrooms.

This is Melinda's fourth picture book; The Were Nana won the NZ Post Children's Choice Award, and her most recent book 'The House that Went to Sea' was also illustrated by Gabriella Klepatski.  She made with love three teenage children and lives inner city with her SO, dog and cat. Melinda has also written two chapter books for teenagers, and written numerous short stories.

Gabriella Klepatski has been sketching and drawing for over 25 years. She originally trained as an architect but her passion for capturing things on paper always brought her back to her sketchbook.

ISBN: 978-1-877378-53-9   RRP $29.99  hardback (Duck Creed Publishing)

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