Katherine Dretzke

Katherine Dretzke is a bookseller at Readings Hawthorn.

Reviews

Alex, Approximately by Jenn Bennett

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

Having loved Jenn Bennett’s last novel, Night Owls, a creative YA fiction about two young artists, I was really happy to be asked to review Alex, Approximately; a story that sees two young people fal…

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Words In Deep Blue by Cath Crowley

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

A second-hand bookstore, a love story, and a letter-library: all of these things are mentioned on the blurb of Cath Crowley’s new book, Words In Deep Blue. Really, why wouldn’t you want to read somet…

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One Step by Andrew Daddo

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

Having faced bullying as a teenager I’ve always been attracted to novels that tackle the topic. The feeling of dreading going to school and worrying how to fit in can be all consuming, heck, being a …

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The Listmaker by Robin Klein

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

I originally read The Listmaker when it came out 19 years ago. I was 12 years old and I loved it then, so I was keen to re-read it when I heard it was being reprinted. It seems that being a 31-year-o…

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Game Theory by Barry Jonsberg

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

I’m always up for a young-adult murder-mystery and, having enjoyed some of Barry Jonsberg’s past novels, I was keen to see how Jonsberg tackled the crime genre for teens. 

Jamie is a maths whiz…

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The Square Root of Summer by Harriet Reuter Hapgood

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

Ah, time travel. It confuses me so much! Worm holes, black holes, white holes – you name it, I won’t understand it. So it probably won’t come as a surprise to you when I say that I didn’t completely …

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A Patch From Scratch by Megan Forward

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

Jesse’s family live in the suburbs outside a big city and are keen to start growing their own food in their backyard. So, the family draw up plans, build a chicken coop and create ‘no dig’ veggie pat…

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Frankie by Shivaun Plozza

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

I was drawn to the novel Frankie from the get go, especially as Melina Marchetta had endorsed the title character as ‘gutsy’ on the front cover. And if anyone knows about gutsy women, it’s Marchetta,…

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We Should Hang Out Sometime by Josh Sundquist

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

I don’t often read young adult autobiographies. This may be because the majority lately are by bloggers or YouTube sensations and, quite frankly, I couldn’t give two hoots about those people. Luckily…

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The Yearbook Committee by Sarah Ayoub

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

It’s always nice to be given an Australian author to review as I’m a huge advocate for Aussie YA. Having not read Sarah Ayoub’s first book, Hate Is Such A Strong Word, I wasn’t sure what to expect fr…

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Beautiful Broken Things by Sara Barnard

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

When I was first given Beautiful Broken Things I was expecting a story of teenage debauchery, a bit of crazy fun. What I was not expecting was a compelling story about strong female friendship or th…

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The Stars at Oktober Bend by Glenda Millard

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

I’m sad to admit it but I had never read Glenda Millard before The Stars at Oktober Bend and I can say I will be quickly rectifying this.

Alice has been through a truly awful assault but luckily she…

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Darkmere by Helen Maslin

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

Keen to fit in with the cool crowd at her new and posh private school, Kate is over the moon when the popular Leo invites her to Darkmere, his newly inherited castle, for the summer break. As Leo and…

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Wolf By Wolf by Ryan Graudin

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

Call me naïve, but I wasn’t really aware there was a genre of fiction known as ‘alternative history’ until I was handed Wolf By Wolf to review. In this novel, author Ryan Graudin is exploring the ide…

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Unbecoming by Jenny Downham

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

I’m really loving how YA fiction is tackling so many different issues at the moment. Unbecoming, the new novel by Jenny Downham, author of the brilliant Before I Die, is no exception, with sexuality …

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The River and the Book by Alison Croggon

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

Not only did this book appeal to me from the get go with its beautiful cover, but the fact that it is endorsed by Amnesty International as a book that promotes awareness of human rights issues meant …

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The Thing About Jellyfish by Ali Benjamin

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

Grief is a topic that is often explored in young adult fiction, where some of the most traumatic experiences can be examined in full detail. However, when it comes to tackling such an issue in middle…

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The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

If you were to ask me to name another book like The Rest Of Us Just Live Here, I don’t think I could. In what appears to be a novel trying to show teens that life is really not like most of the books…

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The Last Summer of Us by Maggie Harcourt

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

It seems that YA fiction is loving a road trip story at the moment as I swear I have read about five in the last six months. And I’m not complaining either as they are fun, full of adventure and pack…

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Green Valentine by Lili Wilkinson

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

Lili Wilkinson, you’ve done it again! Not only have you created a brilliant love story that is unique and sexy, you have brought to YA fiction global environmental issues as well as the importance (a…

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The Improbable Theory of Ana and Zak by Brian Katcher

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

Straight-A student Ana is always busy with extracurricular activities that she hopes will help her get a scholarship to a college of her choice, although, that’s if her overprotective parents even le…

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The Meaning of Maggie by Megan J Sovern

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

Maggie is overachieving, precocious and very funny. She has been given a beautiful leather-bound journal for her 12th birthday. Naturally, she decides to start documenting her life for when she becom…

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Watership Down by Richard Adams

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

When I picked up Watership Down a month ago I thought to myself ‘how exciting can a book about rabbits be?’ Well, what can I say, this book has everything! Not only was I up ’til all hours of the nig…

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A Single Stone by Meg McMinlay

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

When a girl is born into the village everyone holds their breath for the announcement of her measurements. If she is small enough she will be treated like royalty, training to become part of the line…

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The Unlikely Hero of Room 13B by Teresa Toten

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

Adam falls in love with Robyn Plummer the moment he meets her. After a time in a residency program for people with severe OCD, Robyn joins Adam’s group which consists of a small number of teenagers s…

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We All Looked Up by Tommy Wallach

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

Four Seattle high-school students are finishing up their studies, excited at what the future holds. Peter is set to go to California to play basketball, Anita is moving onto an Ivy League school, Eli…

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The Guy, the Girl, the Artist and His Ex by Gabrielle Williams

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

It’s 1986 and Picasso’s famous painting ‘Weeping Woman’ has been stolen from the walls of the NGV. The people of Victoria are torn between being angry at the theft or bemused that the ‘kindergarten-l…

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The Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

Julia is 11 years old when the slowing is announced by experts. That night, the world clock gains 56 minutes due to the slowing of the Earth on its axis. As the Earth continues to slow, minutes and t…

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Nightbird by Alice Hoffman

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

Twig lives in a small town called Sidwell with her mother and brother in a house that has belonged to their family for years. Twig’s family suffered a curse many years earlier at the hands of a witch…

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The Last Time We Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand

Reviewed by Katherine Dretzke

Lex is a self-confessed maths geek with a dream to go to MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) where she can pursue her love of everything mathematics. But when her brother, Taylor, commits sui…

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