Leanne Hall

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Twitter: lilymandarin

Leanne Hall is the Grants Officer for the Readings Foundation and also works as a children’s bookseller at Readings Hawthorn.

Leanne is also a writer of young adult fiction. Her novel This Is Shyness won the Text Prize for Children’s and Young Adult Writing, and her latest, The Queen of the Night, was released in 2012.

Reviews

Norse Myths by Kevin Crossley-Holland

Reviewed by Leanne Hall

I’m a known collector of fancy editions of timeless tales, and a sucker for all things mythological, so I was very excited to pick up Kevin Crossley-Holland’s illustrated Norse Myths: Tales of Odin,

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Moxie by Jennifer Mathieu

Reviewed by Leanne Hall

Vivian is one of the ‘nice girls’ at East Rockport High. She has a small group of friends, and her main mission is to fly under the radar and not draw too much attention to herself. Her grandparents …

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The Goldfish Boy by Lisa Thompson

Reviewed by Leanne Hall

Matthew hasn’t left the house for quite some time. Instead he sits in his bedroom (very clean and disinfected) or the study (within the acceptable limits of cleanliness, if he’s careful about what he…

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The Fighting Stingrays by Simon Mitchell

Reviewed by Leanne Hall

Adventure, Australian history and the power of friendship come together in this extremely engaging novel about a trio of boys living on Thursday Island during World War II. Charlie, Alf and Masa spen…

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Marsh and Me by Martine Murray

Reviewed by Leanne Hall

Joey M. Green is a boy with ‘sensitivities’, who rarely has the right words at the right time. He’s a deep thinker, part of a loving family; he wonders about his place in the world. He plays his guit…

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Living on Hope Street by Demet Divaroren

Reviewed by Leanne Hall

Living on Hope Street is the impressive debut novel of Turkish–Australian writer and co-editor of the acclaimed Coming of Age: Growing Up Muslim in Australia anthology, Demet Divaroren.

Brothers Ka…

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Do Not Lick This Book by Idan Ben-Barak & Julian Frost

Reviewed by Leanne Hall

Do not lick this book doubles as a fun interactive picture book, and a fascinating science lesson about microbes. Readers are introduced to Min, a cartoon microbe, and encouraged to press the page wi…

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Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor

Reviewed by Leanne Hall

Somewhere in the world (or perhaps another world), a mythical and wondrous city closed its borders to outsiders, had its name stolen, and is now only known as Weep. Weep is the obsession of choice of…

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Valentine by Jodi McAlister

Reviewed by Leanne Hall

Traditional fairy lore is transplanted into a small-town Australian location in Jodi McAlister’s debut novel, Valentine, and given a thoroughly contemporary spin.

A frightening black horse appears a…

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My First Lesson by Alice Pung

Reviewed by Leanne Hall

Teenagers are often written at by adults, but My First Lesson is a rare opportunity for twenty-five teenagers to tell their own stories in their own inimitable ways. Keen young writers were invited t…

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The Book of Pearl by Timothee De Fombelle

Reviewed by Leanne Hall

A fourteen-year-old boy runs through the forest – bleeding, heartbroken and confused – before stumbling across a welcoming hut belonging to an elderly saviour, Joshua Pearl. So begins a mystery that …

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Max by Sarah Cohen-Scali

Reviewed by Leanne Hall

Prepare to be taken uncomfortably deep into the Third Reich. Our narrator, Konrad, begins his story in utero – immediately demonstrating an ambitious nature and unswerving devotion to the Führer. Kon…

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Momo by Michael Ende

Reviewed by Leanne Hall

German author Michael Ende might be better known for his novel The Neverending Story, but it is the sweet and magical Momo that holds first place in my heart. Momo is a surreal (and at times creepy) …

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Five Star Billionaire by Tash Aw

Reviewed by Leanne Hall

In Five Star Billionaire a large cast of migrants battle to find security and happiness in a New China that is hurtling into the future. Malaysian author Tash Aw skilfully juggles the perspectives of…

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Alif the Unseen by G. Willow Wilson

Reviewed by Leanne Hall

Alif is an Arab-Indian hacker-for-hire in an unnamed Middle Eastern emirate with a digital policing system so effective it’s referred to as the Hand of God. In an already rightfully paranoid communit…

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The New Jumper by Oliver Jeffers

Reviewed by Leanne Hall, Readings Carlton

A new Oliver Jeffers picture book is always a cause for celebration, and The New Jumper is a gem. The Hueys are a large group of egg-shaped creatures who look, think and act identically. When one of …

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News

The Readings Foundation grant recipients for 2018

by Leanne Hall

The Readings Foundation has announced $184,692 worth of grants to support a range of projects and organisations within Victoria in 2018.

The Readings Foundation assists Victorian organisations that support the development of literacy, community integration and the arts. Readings donates 10% of its overall profit to the Foundation each year, and the kind donations from Readings’ customers make a …

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Great books for keeping the kids busy

by Leanne Hall

Over the next few weeks, we’ll be compiling a host of gift guides to help you with your Christmas shopping. If you have children, you may already know the power of a good activity or novelty book to keep small hands and growing minds fully occupied and entertained. Here are some of our best suggestions for keeping the kids busy during the Christmas season – from babies through to tweens. OUR …

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Our 2017 Christmas Gift Guide: What to buy for hard-to-buy-for children

by Leanne Hall

Over the next few weeks, we’ll be compiling a host of gift guides to help you with your Christmas shopping. Here is a list of suggestions for the tricky young people in your life. THEY DON’T LIKE READING

You know they don’t like reading, and you also know that you’re going to buy them a book anyway… We salute you!

Kids who won’t read

My Pictures After the Storm – A hilarious and simpl…

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We chat with Pilgrim Lee about her gorgeous new picture book

by Leanne Hall

Pilgrim Lee is a super-talented designer and illustrator, and she just happens to work at our Readings Kids shop. We chat to her about her debut picture book, The 12 Days of Christmas. How did you approach presenting a traditional Christmas carol in a modern picture book?

Initially the illustrations were just a fun self-initiated project. I’ve always loved the imagery of the song and it seeme…

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Recommended new YA books in November

by Leanne Hall

This month’s collection of new YA books sees a teen gene-hacker hunt for the cure to a deadly plague, a suitor search for answers in Proust, and villains and heroes put under the microscope… Find our best recommendations for kids books this month here. OUR YA BOOK OF THE MONTH

Gene manipulation, hacking, a deadly global plague, an evil corporation, politics, conspiracy and romance collid…

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Recommended new kids' books in November

by Leanne Hall

What an eclectic November it’s going to be! We’ve got knights, pirates, polka dots, witches, gods and goddesses and more. Find our best recommendations for teen books this month here. CHILDREN’S BOOK OF THE MONTH

The Girl Who Drank the Moon, 2017 winner of the prestigious Newbery Medal, is now available in a paperback edition (but still with the same gorgeous cover). Xan is a good-hearte…

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