Posts tagged ‘australian’
The first books in this series are: Meet Grace by Sofie Laguna, Meet Letty by Alison Lloyd, Meet Poppy by Gabrielle Wang and Meet Rose by Sherryl Clark.
These four chapter books form the beginning of the Our Australian Girl series by introducing four girls growing up in colonial Australia. In 1808, Grace, homeless and hungry on the streets of London, steals a horse and finds herself on a prison ship bound for the colony. In 1841, under very different circumstances, Letty mistakenly joins her sister on migration to Australia. In 1864, we follow Poppy, a girl of Aboriginal and Chinese parentage who sets out after her brother when he escapes from their rural institutional home. And lastly, there’s Rose, a privileged Melbournian who upsets her mother by idolising her thoroughly modern, suffragette Aunt Alice.
Each slip of a book includes a bundle of extra information to colour the central plot, including a map, a teaser of the next book (there are 16 in all), an autobiographical blurb from the author on ‘How I became an Australian girl’, a website and a page of historical facts. While some of this extra content feels heavily ingratiating to the readership, the writing is of such quality, the plots fast-paced, the themes well handled and the girls so engaging that the package works. This is a great series with which to introduce eight- to twelve-year-olds who aren’t quite ready for the My Australian Story series (published by Scholastic) to Australian history.
Rosie Black lands in hot water when she sets off a tracking device attached to a mysterious box she finds whilst scavenging on the waterfront in her hometown of Newperth. Now a wanted woman by several parties (all of varying degrees of sinister shadiness), Rosie sets off on a quest that takes her to Mars, where she discovers the truth about the deadly MalX virus that killed her mother and threatens the lives of the less fortunate inhabitants of Earth. Rosie is joined by cool Aunt Essie, Pip – who has a lot to hide behind his dishy slacker exterior, and Riley, Pip’s ‘boss’, who’s seriousness drives the plot along and let’s you know that this is not all space jokes and flirting.
Read it if: you like action driven speculative futures.
What separates it from the masses: is the believability of the class structure (the haves are “Centrals” – they live in the better parts of the center of town and the “Bankers”, of which Rosie is one, are the have-nots) and the concept of a genetically mutated version of malaria bringing serious risk to the Australian population.
Satisfaction factor: who doesn’t want to see an Aussie chick fulfilling her dream of landing a spacecraft on Mars (albeit in a rather risky, crash-landing situation)?
If it were a movie: Rosie would be played by Chloe Grace Moretz, who’s awesome Hit-Girl made the movie Kick-Ass jump from standard fare to classic tongue-in-cheek super hero flick.