His Name Was Walter

Emily Rodda

His Name Was Walter
  • Format
  • Publisher
  • Country
  • Published
  • ISBN

His Name Was Walter

Emily Rodda

From Australia’s favourite storyteller comes a story, within a story, that shows us the extraordinary power of true love and solves a decades-old mystery.

‘Once upon a time, in a dark city far away, there lived a boy called Walter, who had nothing but his name to call his own …’

The handwritten book, with its strangely vivid illustrations, has been hidden in the old house for a long, long time. Tonight, four kids and their teacher will find it. Tonight, at last, the haunting story of Walter and the mysterious, tragic girl called Sparrow will be read - right to the very end …

From one of Australia’s most renowned children’s authors, comes an extraordinary story within a story - a mystery, a prophecy, a long-buried secret. And five people who will remember this night as long as they live.

Review

After their bus breaks down on a school excursion four kids, including Colin and their schoolteacher, take shelter from a huge storm in a nearby deserted mansion. While there, Colin discovers a secret drawer that contains an old book with strange vivid drawings and a handwritten story about a boy called Walter who was found abandoned and was raised in a beehive-orphanage. The five start to read it to pass some time and while he tries to rationalise the feeling, Colin feels strongly compelled to keep going after the teacher calls for it to be put down.

The story within the story at first seems like nonsense – a boy raised by bees, who works for mice, meets a witch who turns into a cat, lives with a landlord who’s a chicken and falls in love with a young woman who turns into a sparrow – but as both stories move on fantasy and history blend and reveal themselves for what they are.

In the hands of a less skilled writer the ‘reveal’ could have been almost jarring – the way reality suddenly appears on top of this story about talking animals and ogres – but instead – the shift from an English-style folk story to Australian history was a thrill. Another magnificent book from Emily Rodda. For ages 9+.


Dani Solomon is the assistant manager at Readings Kids.

This item is in-stock and will ship in 1-2 business days

Our stock data is updated overnight, and availability may change throughout the day for in-demand items. Please call the relevant shop for the most current stock information. Prices are subject to change without notice.

Sign in or become a Readings Member to add this title to a wishlist.

Brindabella

Brindabella

Ursula Dubosarsky, Andrew Joyner

From an extraordinary novelist and an award-winning illustrator comes this lyrical and unforgettable story about a boy and the untameable wildness of a hand-reared joey.

$16.99Buy now

Finding stock availability...

Leave Taking

Leave Taking

Lorraine Marwood

A new novel about belonging, loss and love from the celebrated author of Star Jumps, the 2010 winner of the Prime Ministers Award for Children's Fiction.

$14.95Buy now

Finding stock availability...

Black Cockatoo

Black Cockatoo

Carl Merrison, Hakea Hustler

Finalist for the Readings Children's Book Prize 2019Black Cockatoo is a vignette that follows Mia, a young Aboriginal girl as she explores the fragile connections of family and culture.<br...

$11.99Buy now

Finding stock availability...

 Read reviewThe Slightly Alarming Tale of the Whispering Wars

The Slightly Alarming Tale of the Whispering Wars

Jaclyn Moriarty

From the award-winning Jaclyn Moriarty comes a spellbinding tale of unlikely friendship, unexpected magic and competitive athletics.

$22.99Buy now

Finding stock availability...

 Read reviewThe Peacock Detectives

The Peacock Detectives

Carly Nugent

Shortlisted for the 2017 Text Prize, The Peacock Detectives is a delightfully Australian story about self-discovery and dealing with change for upper middle-graders.

$16.99Buy now

Finding stock availability...

 Read reviewHis Name Was Walter

His Name Was Walter

Emily Rodda

From Australia's favourite storyteller comes a story, within a story, that shows us the extraordinary power of true love and solves a decades-old mystery.

$22.99Buy now

Finding stock availability...