Little Gem

Anna Zobel

Little Gem
Penguin Books Australia
5 January 2021

Little Gem

Anna Zobel

Shortlisted for the Readings Children’s Prize 2022

Sometimes getting a little lost can help you discover who you really are…

When her spell at Witchcraft School goes wrong, Gem lands in an unfamiliar, empty cottage, outside a strange, colourful town.

Everyone in Ellsworth Pining thinks Gem is their new village witch, even when Gem tries to correct them. And Gem’s new friends do need her.

The Weather Worker is missing, and there are tales of a terrifying beast in the woods.

Gem might know a spell that could help - if she can get it right.


When student witch Gem attempts a travelling spell to go to the classroom next door, she is very surprised to find herself in a seaside town, and even more surprised to learn that her spell has sent her 100 years into the future! Little Gem is welcomed by the town, and even though some of her spells go wrong she may be of some help after all. There are rumours of a beast – and the local weatherman has disappeared – so Gem teams up with her new friends to figure out what is going on!

This is a lovely book from a Melbourne author. There are gorgeous little pictures throughout and I was so pleased to learn there will be more books in this series. Little Gem is a sweet adventure with shades of Kiki’s Delivery Service. It’s the kind of book that is perfect for a family reading aloud and will also be a hit with newly independent readers. Fans of Sally Rippin’s Polly and Buster series will love this one! For ages 7+.

Kim Gruschow is the children’s book buyer at Readings St Kilda.

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