Dani Solomon

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Dani Solomon works in the Children’s & YA section at Carlton.

Reviews

The Twins of Tintarfell by James O'Loghlin

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

Dani and Bart are orphan twins who serve the bedridden King Corolius the Fifth and his son, the spoiled Prince Edward. When Edward’s father buys him a magnificent but huge and angry-looking horse, Pr…

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When Friendship Followed Me Home by Paul Griffin

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

Ben Coffin spent 10 years in children’s homes before 67-year-old Tess adopted him. It was almost worth the wait. Tess is the kind of mum who, when Ben walks into the apartment one day with a stray mu…

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A Face Like Glass by Francis Hardinge

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

The people of Caverna are born without the ability to naturally make facial expressions. Instead they must learn them manually from a ‘Facesmith’. The rich folk, of course, can learn as many intricat…

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One Would Think the Deep by Claire Zorn

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

Seventeen-year-old Sam’s mum has died. With no father in the picture and nowhere else to go, the Department of Child Services have directed him to call his estranged Aunty Lorraine, the only relative…

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The Other Side of Summer by Emily Gale

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

Summer’s brother, Floyd, is killed in an accident. Unsure how to cope with the loss, Summer clings to his Ibanez Artwood guitar (Floyd was giving her lessons before he died) while her dad moves the f…

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Dreaming the Enemy by David Metzenthen

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

Johnny stares at the screen as a celebrity, watched over by a nearby government official, pulls a number out of a barrel and reads it aloud. Just like that, Johnny’s future is decided. Three months o…

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The Way We Roll by Scot Gardner

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

All we know about Will in the first few chapters of The Way We Roll is he’s dropped out of a wealthy private boarding school (it’s complicated) and he lives under a bowling alley. With Julian, the ot…

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Super Happy Magic Forest by Matty Long

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

I admit that before I even opened the cover of this picture book, I was ready to declare it the best one we currently have in our shop. Something about the bright and busy illustrations had hooked me…

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The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

If Firefly and Red Dwarf had a baby and it was raised by The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and the cast of Girls, and the baby was a novel, it would be The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet.

The L

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Star of Deltora: Shadows of the Master by Emily Rodda

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

As a young girl in a post-Shadow Lord Deltora, Britta has two choices – work in her mother’s shop, exiled to the outskirts of her village, or fulfil her lifelong dream of becoming a Trader and sailin…

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The Long Utopia by Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

When I was a kid visiting Adventure Playgrounds, I always entered thinking, ‘This place is built for me and in it I can be anything, and anything can happen.’ Reading Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxt…

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88 Lime Street:The Way In by Denise Kirby

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

Ellen’s new house is huge, it has a massive overgrown garden, it’s full of old furniture and it even has towers, one of which is mysteriously blocked off. After the dried-up fountain in the backyard …

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Moriarty by Anthony Horowitz

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

You don’t need to be Sherlock Holmes himself to know that Arthur Conan Doyle grew to dislike his creation - it’s written there in his stories for all to see. But in case your observational skills are…

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My Dog Doesn’t Like Me by Elizabeth Fensham

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

When you’re eight and you finally get a puppy for your birthday, you feel like nothing in the world can ruin your happiness. But what if owning a puppy is hard? What if your puppy prefers your mum in…

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Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren & Lauren Child

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

When I was choosing a book to read as a kid, I cared not a jot about the gender of the protagonist, or what the cover looked like. I didn’t even notice books were categorised into genres until my tee…

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The Adventures of Sir Roderick, the Not-Very Brave by James O’Loghlin

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

Roderick enjoys his quiet, uneventful life as a herbalist but luckily for us we meet Roderick on the day this all comes to an end – when he becomes Sir Roderick, having just saved Queen Emily from th…

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Apocalypse Cow by Michael Logan

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

Revenge is a dish best served medium rare with BBQ Sauce.

Apocalypse Cow starts off, like all good comedies - with a mysterious man in an expensive suit stepping in a fresh steaming cow-pat. No wait…

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Gaysia by Benjamin Law

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

Benjamin Law is making a name for himself. I was reading Gaysia on my tram ride home, learning about Homolasians, Bi-Mese, Laosbians and Shandykes when a fellow passenger spotted the cover and interr…

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Half-Sick of Shadows by David Logan

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

Half-Sick of Shadows is a wonderful story told through complex and compelling characters. The characters both deliver and are delivered at a slow thoughtful pace. Even something as exciting as the di…

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The Silver Door by Emily Rodda

Reviewed by Dani Solomon, Readings Carlton

It was quite thrilling knowing as I was about to open Emily Rodda’s The Silver Door that inside was a quiet, thoughtful boy named Rye reaching out to enter a silver door of his own which just like th…

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The House of Silk by Anthony Horowitz

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

Anthony Horowitz’s addition to Watson’s chronicles of Sherlock Holmes is so perfect that my naturally sceptical mind is struggling to shrug off the suspicion that just maybe Horowitz somehow found an…

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How I Became A Famous Novelist by Steve Hely

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

‘In strewn banners that lay like streamers from a long ago parade the sun’s fading seraphim rays gleamed onto the hood of the old Ford and ribboned the steel with the meek orange of a June tomato str…

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Nerd Do Well by Simon Pegg

Reviewed by Dani Solomon, Readings Carlton

Charlie Pickering once said writing an autobiography is like ‘bringing yourself to climax into a rolled up picture of yourself’. Simon Pegg may well agree. In fact, he starts his own autobiography by…

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Preincarnate by Shaun Micallef

Reviewed by Dani Solomon, Readings Carlton

If Preincarnate had a soundtrack, Danny Elfman would have composed it, with lyrics provided by Barry Humphries and the film clip made by the boys behind The League of Gentlemen. This book sees Shaun …

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Impractical Jokes: Charlie Pickering

Reviewed by Dani Solomon, Readings Carlton

It was the summer of 1986 when, at what appeared to be a normal barbeque, Richard Opie pushed Ronald Pickering fully clothed into a swimming pool. What happened next would change their lives forever.…

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News

Reflecting on the final Discworld novel

by Dani Solomon

Longtime Terry Pratchett fan Dani Solomon writes about the bittersweet experience of reading the final Discworld novel. (Please note, there are some spoilers in here.)

A few weeks ago I held an unread Discworld novel in my hands for what would be the last time. I didn’t want to read it. I didn’t want to open it. I didn’t want to never have a new Discworld book to look forward to. Terry Pratche…

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The beginner’s guide to Emily Rodda

by Dani Solomon

If you haven’t picked up a fantasy novel since childhood but want to introduce your children to the magic of reading about magic – never fear. Here I provide a stepping-stone guide for your children to follow, through the books of Emily Rodda, the deserved queen of the junior fantasy genre.

Step One: Rowan of Rin

Rodda’s Rowan of Rin series is a gentle and exciting introduction to tradition…

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Three authors that remind me of Terry Pratchett

by Dani Solomon

In an attempt to cheer myself up and make myself feel a little better since my literary hero Sir Terry Pratchett passed away, I thought I’d list a few authors whose work Terry has influenced, or who simply remind me of him in their work.

Frances Hardinge

The first Frances Hardinge book I read was A Face Like Glass and the day after I finished it, I ordered every other book she’s ever written. T…

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A tribute to Terry Pratchett

by Dani Solomon

Stop all the clacks.

An entire world ended last Friday: warring countries; vibrant, huge, dirty cities; small villages settled by people with busy work-filled lives all gone. Individuals perished too: a sharp-as-nails old woman and her wicked friend; a straight-as-an-arrow cop and his big-hearted wife and son; a sixteen-year-old girl who had just discovered what love can mean. A world full of pe…

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Dani Solmon reflects on Cat Out of Hell by Lynne Truss

by Dani Solomon

I have to confess that even though I do own a cat I am not – as I discovered in the early days of my cat ownership – a cat person. Not at all. Not in any way. And perhaps it was because of this that this book resonated with me so strongly.

Cat out of Hell starts off with freshly retired librarian, Alec, escaping to a cottage by the sea to mourn the recent and not yet suspicious passing of his wi…

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Why I want my sister to read Terry Pratchett

by Dani Solomon

Bookseller Dani Solomon tells us why she’s gifted her sister Terry Pratchett’s series about a witch named Tiffany Aching.

My sister turned 11 this year. She’s an excellent human with a wicked sense of humour who very much knows her own mind and I am stupidly proud of her just for existing. She’ll start high school soon and like any decent big sister who works in a bookshop I want to load up he…

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