Angela Crocombe

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Angela Crocombe is the shop manager at Readings Kids. She is also the author of two books on sustainable living, A Lighter Footprint: A Practical Guide to Minimising your Impact on the Planet and Ethical Eating: How to Make Food Choices That Won’t Cost the Earth.

Reviews

Brezania by Anthony Breslin

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Welcome to the magical world of Brezania, a colourful, chaotic universe populated by vibrant creatures that embark upon adventures, and invent and play in their extraordinary environment.

Melbourne …

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Maya & Cat by Caroline Magerl

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

In exquisite poetic language, author and illustrator Caroline Magerl tells the story of a girl who finds a shivering wet stray cat on the roof, befriends it with sardines and then kindly tries to fin…

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After the Lights Go Out by Lili Wilkinson

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Lili Wilkinson’s latest novel is a page-turning thriller set in a post-disaster world. Pru’s single father is a doomsday prepper – which means he has a hidden bunker with supplies to last for years a…

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The Promise Horse by Jackie Merchant

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

In this middle-grade novel pitched at horse lovers there is plenty of other drama too. Harry and her sister, Sissy, have always longed for a horse. But it is only after Sissy dies and the family move…

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Wren by Katrina Lehman & Sophie Beer

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Poor Wren. All he wants is a bit of peace and quiet, but in a big, noisy family living in the city it’s practically impossible. Then his baby sister arrives and she never stops crying. Wren retreats …

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Cicada by Shaun Tan

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

In Cicada, award-winning artist and author Shaun Tan has produced another stunning masterpiece of minimalist social commentary that will resonate with adults and children alike.

The eponymous Cicad…

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Impossible Inventions by Małgorzata Mycielska, Aleksandra Mizielinska & Daniel Mizielinski

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Ever wondered what a water clock would look like? How about a ride in a land yacht? These are just some of the wacky inventions in this unusual book. Produced by the team who brought us the bestselli…

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The Orchard Underground by Mat Larkin

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Mockingly called ‘The Face’ by mean kids at school, Pri Kohli has had the unenviable job of promoting his town, Dunn’s Orchard, since he was a baby. He’s been on every brochure, website, TV ad and at…

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Master Detective: A Kalle Blomkvist Mystery by Astrid Lindgren

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

What an absolute treat – three newly translated books by the world-famous author of Pippi Longstocking, Astrid Lindgren. First published in Swedish in 1946, these are well-written, exciting detective…

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Elementals: Ice Wolves (Book 1) by Amie Kaufman

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Anders and his sister Rayna are twin orphans who live on the streets and pick pockets to survive. Their island, Vallen, is controlled by warring elemental creatures, Ice Wolves and Scorch Dragons, an…

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Robinson by Peter Sís

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Czech-American author Peter Sís is one of the most distinctive picture-book authors working today. His latest is a simply worded, stunningly illustrated story about a young boy who plays pirates with…

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Far from the Tree by Robin Benway

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

This award-winning American novel is an absolute gem; a heart-warming story of family and friendship, as well as an interesting reflection on nature vs. nurture. Sixteen-year- old Grace was adopted i…

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My Brigadista Year by Katherine Paterson

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

After visiting Cuba, Katherine Paterson, the legendary author of Bridge to Terabithia, was inspired to write this fascinating story. When Castro came to power in 1961 he resolved to stamp out illiter…

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The List by Patricia Forde

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

This dystopian middle fiction title is set in a world in the aftermath of great tragedy caused by global warming and human greed. Food and water are heavily rationed, people are not allowed to speak …

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Yayoi Kusama: From Here to Infinity by Sarah Suzuki

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Yayoi Kusama is one of the most exciting artists working today. Once you have seen one of her dot paintings, books or installations, she is impossible to forget. This picture-book biography follows h…

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The Ice Sea Pirates by Frida Nilsson

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

This exciting Nordic adventure story has just been translated from the Swedish. When ten year-old Siri and her sister are out picking berries one day, Siri’s sister is stolen by pirates to work in th…

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Egyptomania by Emma Giuliani & Carole Saturno

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

What a feast for the eyes! This is a stunning, large-format, coffee-table book that is absolutely thrilling in its elegant design and flamboyant colour, with its sturdy flaps and incredible reveals. …

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Hello, Melbourne! by Megan McKean

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

This charming picture book from the creator of Hello, Sydney! treats us to a tour of Melbourne hosted by six friendly magpies. The simple, playful illustrations portray Melbourne’s most iconic sites,…

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Genuine Fraud by E.Lockhart

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

It is very exciting to have a new fast-paced psychological thriller from the author of We Were Liars – and this story does not disappoint. Told in reverse chronology by Jule, who we quickly realise i…

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The Owl Service by Alan Garner

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

It begins with Alison hearing a scratching sound in the roof above her bedroom. Gwyn thinks it’s mice but when he knocks on the roof, it knocks back. When Gwyn goes into the roof to investigate, he d…

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The Build-Up Season by Megan Jacobson

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Seventeen-yearold Iliad is, like her namesake, battle-scarred and battle-ready. After growing up with an abusive father, she jumps at loud noises and is quick to panic, but is also full of attitude a…

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Running on the Roof of the World by Jess Butterworth

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Twelve year-old Tash lives in Tibet, where her village has been overrun by Chinese soldiers and everyone lives in fear of being thrown in jail. After a man sets himself on fire to protest the repress…

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Not Quite Narwhal by Jessie Sima

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

This is a delightful ugly duckling story about Kelp the unicorn, who is born in the ocean and believes himself a narwhal, but just can’t get the hang of swimming and doesn’t like the taste of octopus…

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Release by Patrick Ness

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

The opening pages of a Patrick Ness novel are always a thrilling, somewhat disconcerting, place to be. You have no idea what is going on or where he will take you, but his writing is always powerful …

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Wed Wabbit by Lissa Evans

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Fidge’s little sister Minnie carries her stuffed toy, Wed Wabbit, everywhere. She’s also obsessed with a book about strange, dustbin-shaped characters that speak in rhyme called Wimbley Woos, which s…

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Under the Love Umbrella by Davina Bell and Allison Colpoys

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

The last collaboration between this talented author–illustrator pair was the gorgeous, award-winning Underwater Fancy Dress Parade and this new picture book is just as wonderful. It’s an all-inclusiv…

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The One Memory of Flora Banks by Emily Barr

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Flora suffers from anterograde amnesia and has done since she was 10. She can only remember things for a few hours before they disappear, although she still retains memories from the time before she …

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The Secret Horses of Briar Hill by Megan Shepherd and Levi Pinfold

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

This beautifully produced hardback book, with stunning illustrations by Levi Pinfold, portrays the imaginative world of childhood with incredible perception.

It is 1941 and Emmaline is in Briar Hill…

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When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit by Judith Kerr

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

This story was a childhood favourite, so it was exciting to delve back in again recently to see how it stood the test of time.

Based on the author’s own childhood, the story begins in Berlin in 1933…

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Ada Twist, Scientist by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

What a delightful book!

The charming author–illustrator team of Iggy Peck, Architect and Rosie Revere, Engineer, brings us another brilliant youngster who happens to be in the same schoolroom: Ada T…

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News

Announcing the Teen Advisory Board 2018-2019

by Angela Crocombe

The first meeting of the Readings Teen Advisory Board for 2018-19 was a joyous celebration of books and reading.

We initially played a few getting to know you games, including saying what you liked most or least about your name, and telling everyone your Hogwarts house (we had mainly Ravenclaws in the group – perhaps the biggest book nerds of Hogwarts).

Everyone was also asked to name their fav…

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Meet the bookseller with Angela Crocombe

by Angela Crocombe

Angela Crocombe has worked at Readings for more than seven years, and is now the manager of our Kids shop. We chat with her about the bookselling trends she’s noticed in recent years, and her favourite part of a working day. Why did you decide to work in books?

Books have always been my passion. Despite this, I never really believed it was possible to work with them every day. But after doing…

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A monthly update from our Teen Advisory Board

by Angela Crocombe

It was an emotional final farewell to our inaugural Teen Advisory Board this month. We celebrated with a special Brunetti’s cake (extra chocolate please) and a visit from two luminaries of the OzYA scene – Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff.

The two authors regaled us with stories of how they began writing together, what its like to co-write with someone, and what it’s really like on the grueling…

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A monthly update from our Teen Advisory Board

by Angela Crocombe

This month the teens gave feedback on the 2018 Readings Young Adult Book Prize shortlist and discussed each of the titles on the list, including elements such as the characterisation, plot, writing style and even covers of each book. Earlier in the year they had been lucky enough to meet one of the shortlisted authors, Clare Atkins, and receive a copy of her book.

We also had a visit this month …

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A monthly update from our Teen Advisory Board

by Angela Crocombe

This month, we were fortunate to have a visit from Scot Gardner. Now a critically acclaimed author of several novels for young readers, Scot began his career writing for Earth Garden magazine and got his big break when he took the manuscript of his first novel to a John Marsden writing camp.

Scot travelled two hours by train to be with us. He showed us photos of his ‘office’ (a deserted bushwalk…

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A monthly update from our Teen Advisory Board

by Angela Crocombe

This month we were fortunate enough to have a visit from delightful author Eliza Henry Jones. Eliza, who has published two adult novels with Harper Collins, and has just released her first young adult novel, P is for Pearl, set in an imaginary small town in Tasmania.

The novel begins when a customer breaks a window at the café where the main character, Gwendolyn, works. This event triggers viole…

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