Tumblr, anyone?

Anybody have a Tumblr blog? MINE IS HERE.

Tumblr Header

Tumblr can be a bit of a weird place, because people use it for so many different things.

I’d say mine is about 35% ballet, 15% Irish dance, 10% vintage and retro stuff, 10% figure skating/gymnastics/random travel stuff, and 30% cats!

Come over and pay me a visit if you’re interested in any of that. 🙂

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A Boy and a House (Deček in hiša) by Maja Kastelic

A Boy and a House (Deček in hiša) by Maja Kastelic

When a little boy sees a cat slip into the open door of an apartment building, the temptation is too great: he follows the cat into the lobby.  Before continuing up the stairway, the boy picks up one of several discarded drawings that litter the floor.

Another open door awaits. Again, the boy follows the cat, this time into an apartment filled with books and toys. No one is there, but a table set for tea testifies to the fact that someone has been there recently. More drawings are scattered throughout, which the boy picks up one by one. With his pile of sketches in hand, he continues up several more staircases until he reaches an attic where a wonderful surprise awaits him.

A Boy and a House (Deček in hiša) by Maja Kastelic

Originally a Slovenian publication, there’s no trouble carrying A Boy and a House over to another language or culture because the story is told solely in pictures.

I downloaded this one to review for two reasons: the beautiful cover, and the mention of the cat!

The goal of the book is to get young readers talking, to have them find their own stories in the pictures. The pictures are gorgeous, but I definitely didn’t get the most out of them in black and white on my Kindle.

Naturally, this is the sort of book you want in paper, not digital form.

 

Review copy from NetGalley.

Release Day for Cool Competition

Cool Competition (Pointe Perfect Jessica Hamilton Book #1) by Natalia Heaney

Cool Competition, the first book in the Pointe Perfect series, is out today.

Jessica Hamilton is so close to her dream of dancing her first solo – and then a new girl arrives at the ballet studio and changes everything. A combination of too much competition, so much hard work, and a disaster at school, and suddenly it seems like it will be hard enough just surviving the year.

Buy Links:

Amazon US

Amazon Australia

Amazon UK

Amazon Canada

Amazon India

Barnes and Noble

Kobo US

Kobo Australia

Kobo UK

Kobo Canada

Smashwords

New Book: Time School by Nikki Young

Another great read for the hundredth anniversary of the end of World War One.

Time School by Nikki Young

Time School by Nikki Young

A power cut and a series of mini disasters means friends, Jess, Nadia, Tomma and Ash barely make it to the station to catch their train to school. What they find is a far cry from the usual packed commuter train they’re expecting…

When they arrive at Hickley School, the children are surprised to find some of the buildings missing and they don’t recognise any of the other pupils, who are all dressed in a different style of uniform. The only person who takes the time to help them is Martha, despite being preoccupied by her own worries about her family being hungry and not hearing from brother, Henry whom she says is away fighting.

The children soon realise this is no normal day and it’s not until they return home that they’re able to figure out what happened. What they don’t know is whether it was a one-off day, or if they will get to see Martha and the other pupils again. Jess hopes so. She has something she needs to tell Martha. Not knowing how or why, she feels a connection and an obligation to this girl she can’t explain.

Out Now: Playing Atari with Saddam Hussein by Jennifer Roy

Playing Atari with Saddam Hussein by Jennifer Roy

Playing Atari with Saddam Hussein

I can’t believe that the events in this book could be viewed as “historical” now! The 1991 war in Iraq is told here from the perspective of a local boy. The conflict of the 1990s continues to have an effect on the country (and the world) today, and this is a great introduction to the situation for younger readers.

Playing Atari with Saddam Hussein by Jennifer Roy

Video game villains and real-life dictators dominate daily life for eleven-year-old Ali

Ali Fadhil has very simple likes and dislikes. It is 1991 in Iraq and all Ali wants to do is read his comics and play football and video games. But President Saddam Hussein has other plans. After he invades neighbouring Kuwait, the U.S. and their allies launch Operation Desert Storm to force him out. Over the next forty-three days, Ali and his family would survive bombings, food shortages and constant fear.

Cinematic and timely, this is the story of how war changed one boy’s destiny forever and would one day bring him face to face with Saddam himself at the UN trial.

Discover Nests by Juliana O’Neill

Discover Nests by Juliana O'Neill

Who lives in a nest?
Read all about animals who live in nests in this Discover Reading Beginning Reader. Birds, snakes, turtles and more all live in nests. With manageable sentences children just beginning to read, this Discover Reading title is informative nonfiction for beginning readers.

Discover Nests by Juliana O’Neill

What perfect timing that this book is being released on the first day of spring in Australia.

This is a good instalment in the “Discover Reading” series, and I think children will find it more interesting than some of the others (not just birds are mentioned).

I thought I’d read this one as we have so many baby birds on our property at this time of year!

As ever, this will work MUCH better as a paper book.

 

Review copy from NetGalley.

Cool Competition (Pointe Perfect #1)

With Cool Competition due out on the 11th of September, I thought I’d share some information about the book.

Firstly, here is what it’s about:

‘The new girl is called Sarah. And she’s better than me.’

Jessica Hamilton has two goals for the year 1997:
#1 Get promoted to the advanced ballet class.
#2 Dance the Winter Fairy solo in Cinderella.
Everything is going well, and it looks like she might earn both her dreams – and then a new girl arrives at the ballet school and changes everything.
Extra competition is the last thing Jessica needs, and just like that her goals seem far out of reach. No matter what she does, Sarah Webster does it better.
And right when things couldn’t get any worse at ballet, disaster strikes at school, too.
Suddenly it seems like it’ll be hard enough simply surviving the year. However, maybe, just maybe… luck will turn back on Jessica’s side.

Cool Competition (Pointe Perfect Jessica Hamilton Book #1) by Natalia Heaney

And here are some facts!

#1 It is the first in a series of six books.

The series follows teenager Jessica Hamilton through her final three years of elite ballet training. She has to juggle high school at the same time as training six days a week to become a professional dancer.

#2 It is set in Australia.

There are some great books out there about Australian dancers. However, most have US or UK settings. Australians aren’t that different (at least, I don’t think we are!).

#3 It is appropriate for readers from a middle grade level upwards.

Jessica is fifteen-turning-sixteen in the first book of the series, but she’s a little too busy with dance to get herself into too much teen trouble!

#4 The next book should be out in a few months.

Friends and Rivals (Pointe Perfect Jessica Hamilton Book #2) by Natalia Heaney

Book #2, Friends and Rivals, should be up for preorder in the near future.

#5 It is set a few years ago.

There’s a big trend towards 90s nostalgia these days. This series is a throwback to the days when calling a friend meant using the family landline in the kitchen – with your parents listening in! It’s a time when the internet was a new – practically undiscovered – thing. It’s a time when completing homework involved multiple trips to the library to reserve books just to get one paragraph of information!

#6 There will be a connected series about a younger dancer.

Cinerella Dreams (Stage Lights Lilia Petrenko Book #1) by Natalia Heaney

The first instalment of Stage Lights, a three-book series about Lilia Petrenko, a younger student at the same ballet school, will be out in 2019.

More Pre-Order Links

Cool Competition (Pointe Perfect Jessica Hamilton Book #1) by Natalia Heaney

In addition to the Amazon links I posted yesterday, Cool Competition is now available for pre-order across other sites:

Barnes and Noble

Kobo US

Kobo Australia

Kobo UK

Kobo Canada

Smashwords

Cool Competition up for Pre-Order!

Cool Competition (Pointe Perfect Jessica Hamilton Book #1) by Natalia Heaney

Cool Competition, the first book in the Pointe Perfect series, is up for pre-order. At the moment you can order it from Amazon, and it will be available elsewhere soon.

Also soon: a paperback version.

The release date is the 11th of September.

Amazon US

Amazon Australia

Amazon UK

Amazon Canada

Amazon India

Here’s what it’s about:

 

‘The new girl is called Sarah. And she’s better than me.’

Jessica Hamilton has two goals for the year 1997:

#1 Get promoted to the advanced ballet class.

#2 Dance the Winter Fairy solo in Cinderella.

Everything is going well, and it looks like she might earn both her dreams – and then a new girl arrives at the ballet school and changes everything.

Extra competition is the last thing Jessica needs, and just like that her goals seem far out of reach. No matter what she does, Sarah Webster does it better.

And right when things couldn’t get any worse at ballet, disaster strikes at school, too.

Suddenly it seems like it’ll be hard enough simply surviving the year. However, maybe, just maybe… luck will turn back on Jessica’s side.

Jane Austen (Little People, Big Dreams) by Isabel Sanchez Vegara

Jane Austen (Little People, Big Dreams) by Isabel Sanchez Vegara

New in the Little People, Big Dreams series, discover the remarkable life of Jane Austen, the British novelist, in this true story of her life. Little Jane grew up in a big family that loved learning and she often read from her father’s library. In her teenage years she began to write in bound notebooks and craft her own novels. As an adult, Jane secretly created stories that shone a light on the British upper classes and provided a witty social commentary of the time, creating a new dialogue for female characters in books. With stylish and quirky illustrations and extra facts at the back, this empowering series celebrates the important life stories of wonderful women of the world. From designers and artists to scientists, all of them went on to achieve incredible things, yet all of them began life as a little child with a dream. These books make the lives of these role models accessible for children, providing a powerful message to inspire the next generation of outstanding people who will change the world!

Jane Austen (Little People, Big Dreams) by Isabel Sanchez Vegara

This biography of Jane Austen is aimed at younger readers, introducing them to one of history’s most famous literary figures in simple terms and with illustrations.

Jane Austen’s works are beyond readers in the target age range, but they can learn about her contributions to publishing and the status of women writers now.

 

Review copy from NetGalley.