Wild Things: YA Grown-Up discussion

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Teachers' and Librarians' Corner > Australian and New Zealand authors - early years to young adults

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message 1: by Kass (new)

Kass | 16 comments I'm an Aussie and a teacher who loves children's fiction. Time permitting I hope to include some art and crafty ideas to go along with the picture books. I believe that the best Australian authors write for children and teenagers, hope you enjoy.

Recommendations coming very soon.


message 2: by Kass (last edited Jan 25, 2011 01:19AM) (new)

Kass | 16 comments I'll start with one of my favourite authors who also happens to be a great illustrator - Stephen Michael King. He writes and illustrates picture books. So many of his books are about acceptance and all his characters have unforgettable presence.

Henry and Amy:- is my No.1.It is a great book about friendship and accepting each other and ourselves for who we are and what we can offer. The best part is that the message is not in your face - it is beautifully conveyed through fabulous pictures and great writing.

The Man Who Loved Boxes- A fantastic story about the bond between a father and son. A reminder that love can be expressed in many, many different ways - very powerful.

Other books by this author:
Milli, Jack and the Dancing Cat
Mutt Dog!
Emily Loves To Bounce
Leaf


message 3: by Kass (new)

Kass | 16 comments Kass wrote: "I'm an Aussie and a teacher who loves children's fiction. Time permitting I hope to include some art and crafty ideas to go along with the picture books. I believe that the best Australian authors ..."

I forgot to add that if you have any recommendations please add them. Especially suggestions from Kiwi teachers or librarians.


message 4: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl  (cherylllr) Stephen Michael King. A few of his books are in my library system - I just ordered one.

My son and I love Gary Crew: Strange Objects and Angel's Gate.


message 5: by Kass (new)

Kass | 16 comments Thanks Cheryl - Gary Crew books are fabulous. I also enjoyed both books.

Learning how to add links I noticed that some of the books have two or three different titles. I was disappointed to see that some of the titles remove all the wonderful subtlety that the author has worked hard to infuse into each story. As an example the The Man Who Loved Boxes is also known as Do You Love Me Dad?. Using a 'sledgehammer' to deliver a message is one of my pet peeves, especially in children's books. All of the authors great work is undone by the publishers or marketing 'powers that be'.


message 6: by Kass (last edited Jan 25, 2011 06:08PM) (new)

Kass | 16 comments Scott Westerfeld is a writer of YA speculative fiction. My first contact with him was his stunning commentary on society's obsession with beauty and conformity in Uglies. It is the ideal reading material for high school students as it provides a great launchpad for discussions on self image and society's concept of beauty, independent thought and authority.
It is the kind of book that could polarise it's readers but imagine the great discussion that could come from such a happening.
I liked it, the characters are well developed, the story while not original is well written and I love been encouraged to think outside the square - no matter how far the author takes me.

Book two and Three of the series:
Pretties
Specials

edit: Whoops! I got lost amongst all my visiting around the Goodreads site and forgot the title of my own thread - to celebrate Aussie authors - Scott Westerfeld is American.


Terry (Ter05 TwiMoms/ MundieMoms) (ter05) | 70 comments Oh, totally love Juliet Marillier and she is an Australian author. I "discovered" her in 2010 and in short order had bought every book she has written and read them all. I have bought her Sevenwaters series and her Bridei Chronicles in hardback to display on my "very favorite reads" shelf and have the paperbacks to loan to friends and family. I even bought Legends of Australian Fantasy just to get her 50 page short story and had it shipped from Australia to Texas! Her Wildwood Dancing and Cybele's Secret are YA. Some of the others are not far from YA and suitable for older teens depending on where one draws the line.


Angela Sunshine (angelasunshine) Kass wrote: "Scott Westerfeld is a writer of YA speculative fiction. My first contact with him was his stunning commentary on society's obsession with beauty and conformity in Uglies..."

My middle school age son also really enjoyed the Midnighter series by Scott Westerfeld.


message 9: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl  (cherylllr) Juliet Marillier
Wildwood Dancing
Cybele's Secret
The Aussie Readers group is having a challenge - try to read 10 books by Aussie writers throughout this whole year. They welcome entrants from other countries, and will give us a pat-on-the-back even if we read only three.

(hmm... as I explain it, I wonder - I'll have to check next time I'm over there - is it 10 books, or 10 different writers - that is, would several of Marillier count as the several, or just one....)


message 10: by Heather (last edited Jan 27, 2011 08:07AM) (new)

Heather Bree (blackdotbug) I probably have more than one Aussie author in my GR read list, but the first I thought of was Isobelle Carmody, who wrote The Obernewtyn Chronicles. I've only read the first, Obernewtyn, but I hope to get back to the series eventually. I really enjoyed it.


message 11: by Heather (new)

Heather Bree (blackdotbug) Oh yeah, and there's Alison Croggon (originally from South Africa, but lives in Australia now) who wrote the books of Pellinor, which I adore. :)
The Naming: The First Book of Pellinor
The Riddle: The Second Book of Pellinor
The Crow: The Third Book of Pellinor
The Singing


message 12: by Kass (new)

Kass | 16 comments Heather wrote: "I probably have more than one Aussie author in my GR read list, but the first I thought of was Isobelle Carmody, who wrote The Obernewtyn Chronicles. I've only read the first, ..."</i>

Take your time Heather it has been over 20 years since
[book:Obernewtyn
was released and we are still waiting for the final two books in the series.

They are a great read - which makes the wait in between books so much tougher.

I love all of Isobelle Carmody's books - youth fantasy rarely goes wrong in my opinion.



message 13: by Lydia (new)

Lydia (loverofinformation) | 596 comments Randa Abdel-Fattah lives in Sydney and places all her books there. The beauty of her books is how they handle racism/discrimination issues within the context of a teen's developing identity and pride in their heritage.

I can highly recommend all her books, many of which are award winners:
Does My Head Look Big in This?
Where the Streets Had a Name
Ten Things I Hate about Me


message 14: by Sheri (new)

Sheri (sheribo) | 55 comments I am surprised that nobody has mentioned Catherine Jinks yet. I recently read The Reformed Vampire Support Group and it's sequel The Abused Werewolf Rescue Group.
They were recommended to me at my local book shop. I really like her writing style and can't wait to read more of her books. I love reading books by Aussie authors, because my husband is Australian, and I like hearing about the places we've visited there or just hearing the different slang that I often only hear from him or his family and friends. Would love to hear more recommendations!


message 15: by Heather (new)

Heather Bree (blackdotbug) I had no idea Catherine Jinks was Australian or I would have mentioned her way earlier. I love the Genius series as well. (Evil Genius, Genius Squad, The Genius Wars)


message 16: by Kass (new)

Kass | 16 comments I am re-reading one of my favourite books. I read it as an eleven year old, loved it but didn't realise until I read it again years later that there was romance and other subtle little notes within the story. Loved it even more after the second read - it resonated with me for years after. So much so that 22 years later I was excited when I found it in a 2nd hand bookstore. Hoping it still holds the magic I felt all those years ago.

The book The Changeover: A Supernatural Romance and the author a New Zealander Margaret Mahy


message 17: by Heather (new)

Heather Bree (blackdotbug) I read Maddigan's Fantasia by her and I thought it was meh. Have you read that one Kass? How does it compare to her other works, do you think?


message 18: by Kass (new)

Kass | 16 comments Heather wrote: "I read Maddigan's Fantasia by her and I thought it was meh. Have you read that one Kass? How does it compare to her other works, do you think?"

Hi Heather
I haven't read Maddigan's Fantasia, for some reason I didn't do my usual and read every book by Mahy after reading The Changeover: A Supernatural Romance. And re-reading a childhood favourite may have been a mistake - adult eyes are too critical and practical.


message 19: by Ben (new)

Ben White (ben_white) Ack! Someone beat me to Margaret Mahy. I'd like to put in Barry Crump as a New Zealand author, not specifically for young adults but I loved his books when I was 10 - 16 (and still do). Wild Pork & Watercress was a particular favourite.


message 20: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl  (cherylllr) Ben, neither Wild pork and watercress by Barry Crump nor any of the other books I looked at by him have descriptions. Few even seem to have reviews, so I've no clue what these are about. There is a Librarian's Group here on goodreads - if you join you could ask those volunteers to please add descriptions. Or you could write little 'reviews' with summaries for the ones you remember well enough. Please? To improve goodreads' database for all of us? :)


message 21: by Ben (new)

Ben White (ben_white) Goodness, that's kind of a travesty. I added a review of Wild Pork & Watercress, although it's been more than ten years since I read it so I hope I didn't get anything majorly wrong.


message 22: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl  (cherylllr) Tx for the review - it looks wonderful and it's on my wishlist. Unfortunately my ibrary system has nothing at all by him.


message 23: by Ben (new)

Ben White (ben_white) The upcoming movie might create a fresh surge of interest in him and his work--I certainly hope it does, anyway. When he was alive I used to see him around town from time to time, in his old red Toyota ute with his dog in the back, coming in from the bush to stock up before heading out again. A real Kiwi character.


message 24: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl  (cherylllr) Neat!


message 25: by Kass (new)

Kass | 16 comments I never grow tired of the Hairy Maclary books by Lynley Dodd. I always make sure they are in my classroom library and try to read at least one a day to the kids.
We especially love Hairy Maclary's Rumpus at the Vet, Hairy Maclary Scattercat and we just read Hairy Maclary, Shoo! for the first time. We loved it but felt a bit sorry for poor old Hairy.


message 26: by Ashley (new)

Ashley (affie) | 468 comments I cannot believe no one has mentioned Melina Marchetta yet! I have been totally fan-girling over her lately because every time I read something she has written, I'm swept away by her brilliance!

I've read three of her books thus far, and all are firmly on my favorites list. On the Jellicoe Road won the 2009 Printz Awards, and it is one of the most perfect books I have ever read. The story is glorious complex with perfectly crafted characters.

I've also read Saving Francesca and it's companion novel, just barely released, The Piper's Son. Both books deal heavily with family relationships and dynamics, depression, grief, pain and overcoming loss. The characters are rich and vivid. They are full of flaws, but that's okay, because you simply can't help but love them anyway. These characters are some of the very, very few that I honestly wish I could meet in real life.


message 27: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl  (cherylllr) I just read Saving Francesca last week. I will def. be looking for more by her at my library!


message 28: by Ashley (new)

Ashley (affie) | 468 comments Isn't she amazing?!?!?!


message 29: by Heather (new)

Heather Bree (blackdotbug) I have Jellicoe Road on my book stack from the library. Actually it's overdue already and I haven't started it yet. Guess I'll be making a donation in late fees. :)


message 30: by Ashley (new)

Ashley (affie) | 468 comments Heather, it's SO good! One of my very favorites of ALL time!


message 31: by Kass (new)

Kass | 16 comments Ashley, totally agree Melina Marchetta is one of my all time favourites. First time I read Saving Francesca I'm sure I cried every few pages - the place I was in at the time. Have since re-read - only cried once, I'm taking that as a sign I'm in a much better emotional place now :)
Absolutely love Finnikin of the Rock have read three times now, and will probably read it many more times.


message 32: by Isaac (last edited Feb 14, 2020 03:31PM) (new)

Isaac Toit (isaac_du_toit) X Marks The Spot by New Zealand children's writer Joan de Hamel


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