Our top kids' book picks for August

From a traditional Wurundjeri welcome, to the world’s first computer programmer, these are our top children’s book picks for the month of August.


KIDS' BOOK OF THE MONTH


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Welcome to Country by Aunty Joy Murphy & Lisa Kennedy

Respected senior Wurundjeri elder of the Kulin alliance, Aunty Joy Murphy, comes together with indigenous artist, Lisa Kennedy, to present an incredibly important picture book that belongs on the shelves of home and school libraries alike.

Welcome to Country is a celebration of the original inhabitants of Melbourne, the Wurundjeri People. It takes readers through a traditional welcoming ceremony, and teaches them about things like the sacred River White Gum, and Bunjil, the eagle creator spirit. With its beautiful artwork and lyrical writing, Welcome to Country is an impressive and accessible book to help explain the customs and culture of Indigenous Australia.


PICTURE BOOKS


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  • Ada’s Ideas: The Story of Ada Lovelace, the World’s First Computer Programmer by Fiona Robinson – This is the biographical story of Ada Lovelace, daughter of poet Lord Byron, and mathematician Anna Isabella Milbanke. Fiona Robinson’s illustrations bring to life a remarkable and incomparable historical figure. 4+

  • Fabish: The Horse That Braved a Bushfire by Neridah McMullin & Andrew McLean – A true story based on a horse who survived the 2009 Black Saturday bushfires. As the fires rage around them, brave Fabish leads seven young horses to safety. 5+

  • My Brother by Dee Huxley, Oliver Huxley & Tiffany Huxley – A creature who has lost his brother sets out on a journey to find him. This is a tender, moving exploration of loss to help guide young readers through the grieving process. 4+

JUNIOR & MIDDLE FICTION


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  • Harry Potter & the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne & John Tiffany – The book that everybody’s been waiting for has finally arrived. The Harry Potter saga continues as his youngest son struggles with the responsibility of the family legacy. 10+

  • The Uncommoners: The Crooked Sixpence by Jennifer Bell – After their grandmother is rushed to hospital, siblings Ivy and Seb find themselves transported to the world of the Uncommoners and on the run from the forces of evil. Perfect fare for Harry Potter fans. 9+

  • The Inventory: Iron Fist by Andy Briggs – Dev’s home sits on top of an enormous secret: The Inventory, a warehouse of some of the most incredible top-secret technology in the world. When a gang of thieves attempts to steal the Iron Fist, Dev and his new friends must stop them. Action-packed Mission Impossible-esque fare for the younger set. 10+

  • The 78-Storey Treehouse by Andy Griffiths & Terry Denton – Save the ninth of August in your diaries, because the superstars of funny kidlit are back! This time they’ve added another thirteen storeys to their ever-growing treehouse. We’re so excited to be hosting the book launch for The 78-Storey Treehouse – Terry and Andy’s only Melbourne event – on the day of release. Find more information and book your tickets here. 8+

CLASSIC OF THE MONTH


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The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

Grieving the sudden loss of her parents, ten-year-old Mary is sent to live with her Uncle Archibald in his dark, forbidding manor on the Yorkshire moors. At night she hears crying, and upon further exploration she finds a key that allows her access to a hidden garden. The garden is wild and overgrown, and seemingly half dead. But with the help of two unexpected companions, Mary starts the task of returning the garden to its former glory.

This is a book full of wonder that succeeds in impressing readers young and old. Our reviewer writes: ‘As an adult I love the novel’s rich symbolism and psychological insight, but as a child I was drawn to its alchemical world. The Secret Garden not only describes magical events, it redefines what magic is and that, to me, is its greatest charm.’ Read the rest of the review here.

Puffin have released a gorgeous new edition, complete with an introduction by Sophie Dahl.


Holly Harper is a children’s bookseller and author who blogs for the Readings website.

The 78-Storey Treehouse

The 78-Storey Treehouse

Andy Griffiths, Terry Denton

$14.99Buy now

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