Wednesday 30 November 2011

The first of an occasional book review

The Truth about Verity Sparks
Susan Green. Walker books ISBN 978-1-921720-27-7
2011 paperback

My name is Verity Sparks and I've got itchy fingers. The Professor calls it telegativism. Sounds like a disease, doesn't it? But it's not. It's more like a talent. A gift. I've always had it, but I didn't know I had it until the summer of 1878. It happened the day I finished the yellow hat.

And so begins a rollicking adventure, written with great panache and humour. It's not easy to set your story in an historical setting but Susan Green has written with sensitivity about the plight of the working class in London of 1878- how does an orphan find work and keep employed when an unjust accusation of theft is engineered?

But thanks to Verity's unusual itchy fingers, she is able to find lost items and eventually solve the mystery of her foundling status. Along the way, she is befriended by the Plush family who are Investigators in a Confidential Inquiry Agency- Professor Plush wants to experiment with Verity's unique talent and this again calls on the nineteenth century's fascination with the supernatural and science.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book- the pace, skill and intrigue kept me page turning right to the end.

A highly recommended read for years 5 upwards.

Tuesday 29 November 2011

Could it be summer?

Summer and count down to Christmas.  I don't need any reminders about Christmas- that's evident in the commercial world- but what about the summer world?
This young blue tail lizard tells me the day is hot.

And to beat the commercialism I've been busy creating - small gifts from my craft room, from my garden.  These sachets are an adaptation of my aunt's crafting a few years ago.

I've made about twenty of them for MOPS mums- I'm the mentor mum every Thursday- a challenge and a privilege- next week it's our Christmas break-up.

Any one else making gifts for Christmas?

Tomorrow I'm posting the first of a new feature- a book review( of course children's and Australian) 

Monday 21 November 2011

Capturing that storm intensity

That dark cloud, that potent swirl of impending storm- I love the capturing of such intensity, with the white thickness of cloud being stirred and jolted into the velocity of thunder.

And my bush garden isn't too bad either- love my garden.
Have I ever written about the luminous light in a storm?  Must make a note to do so soon.

Monday 14 November 2011

Is Babysitting part of picture book ideas?

I've been busy, Grandma busy.
 What with swimming, toys, pictures and special treat food- (that orange blob in the photo is a mango!) and weekend sleepovers I've been busy.  But I'm road testing ideas all the time and listening- for example my 8 year old grandson reckons sometimes 'baddies' look better that goodies and my five year old granddaughter loved the book 'Make it I'm the Mother' by Andrew and Janet McLean and she's hooked on fairies, castles, princesses...

Take a picture of me Grandma!  I did.  I'm thinking, mulling, washing sheets, putting away Lego- 'you have such fantastic toys Grandma' and I look around my study- I do love toys and books- how lucky I am.  Now to chase that elusive picture book story.