ReadPlus is a collection of selected books and films arranged under themes. This web site provides lists, reviews and resources for librarians, teachers and parents about books for young people aged 5 to 18.
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Latest Review

Jul 26 2017

The Eureka Key by Sarah L Thomson

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Secrets of the Seven book 1. Bloomsbury, 2017. ISBN 9781681190617
(Age: 11+) Highly recommended. When middle school puzzle master Sam and history wiz Martina win a contest for a summer trip across the US, they discover they've been drafted into something vastly more extraordinary. Joining another kid on the trip, Theo, a descendant of George Washington himself, they must follow clues to find seven keys left behind by the Founding Fathers. Together the keys unlock Benjamin Franklin's greatest invention - a secret weapon intended to defend the country. Each key is hidden in a unique location around the U.S., protected with puzzles, riddles, and traps. This has kept the weapon safe . . . until now! Gideon Arnold, a dangerous descendant of the infamous Benedict Arnold, is on the chase.
Competition heats up between Arnold and his thugs and Sam and Martina to reach the artefacts first. Sam, Martina and Theo must use their problem solving skills to solve tricky puzzles, escape death and survive booby-traps. By the end of the series, they must be able to save the USA , uncovering many deep, dark secrets.
Readers will love trying to solve the clues themselves using deductive reasoning to escape and survive the high-stress situations the characters find themselves in. Will they be able to stay one step ahead of the baddies? The story is a fast paced, action thriller that is highly entertaining. It will appeal to students aged 11 and up who will eagerly await the release of each new book in the series of which will need to be read in order. It would make a great read aloud, particularly if studying American history as many of the clues are linked to this.
Kathryn Schumacher



More Reviews

Jul 26 2017

Court of Fives by Kate Elliott

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Court of Fives book 1. Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2016. ISBN 9780316364300
(Age: 13+) Highly recommended. Fantasy. Kate Elliott, an award winning fantasy author for adults has turned her hand to a young adult novel with exciting results. Court of Fives is...
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Jul 26 2017

Poisoned Blade by Kate Elliott

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Court of Fives book 2. Little, Brown and Company, 2017. ISBN 9780316344388
(Age: 14+) Highly recommended. Fantasy. 2017 Locus Awards nominee. An exciting sequel to Court of fives by World Fantasy Award finalist Kate sees Jes now moving up the ladder as she competes in the...
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Jul 26 2017

Dr Karl's little book of dinos by Dr Karl Kruszelnicki

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Ill. by Russell Jeffery. Pan Australia, 2017. ISBN 9781925481242
(Age: 9+) Recommended. Dinosaurs. Filled with lots of details about dinosaurs as well as puzzles, quizzes and activities this is a wonderful book for the child who loves dinosaurs as well as a useful addition to a school or...
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Jul 26 2017

Attack of the giant robot zombie mermaid by Matt Cosgrove

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Epic Fail Tales book 2. Koala Books, 2017. ISBN 9781743811702
(Age: 8+) Humour. On the front cover the Warning states: 'This book contains:
Gross stuff
Extreme stupidity
Gore
.'
This is not an exaggeration. Attack of the Giant Robot Zombie Mermaid...
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Jul 25 2017

Ballad for a mad girl by Vikki Wakefield

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Text, 2017. ISBN 9781925355291
(Age: 13+) Highly recommended. Death. Country towns. Thriller. One night walking across the pipe outside the town, risk-taking Grace has a moment of fear. She has done this many times before, holds the record for getting across, but this time she freezes,...
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Jul 25 2017

The tale of Angelino Brown by David Almond

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Ill. by Alex T. Smith. Walker Books, 2017. ISBN 9781406358070
(Age: 9+) Higly recommended. Bert Brown discovered the angel in his top pocket when he was driving his bus. Bert and Betty's friends think he's lovely. So do Nancy, Jack and Alice from Class 5K. But Acting Head Teacher Mrs...
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Jul 25 2017

Revolt against the Romans by Tony Bradman

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Bloomsbury, 2017. ISBN 9781472929327
Author, Tony Bradman has created a short read (115 pages) about a young Roman boy called Marcus. He has a complicated relationship with his father a high-ranking official within the Roman Civil Service. When Marcus is captured by Catuvellauni in...
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Jul 25 2017

Watch out, snail! by Gay Hay and Margaret Talland

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Starfish Bay Publishing, 2017. ISBN 9781760360320
(Age: 4+) Highly recommended. Snails. New Zealand fauna and flora. Introduced species. Nocturnal animals. STEM. This tactile publication had me rushing to my books on New Zealand animals as I turned the pages. The Powilliphanta Snail only...
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Jul 25 2017

When Dimple met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

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Hodder and Stoughton 2017. ISBN 9781473667402
Recommended for middle to upper high school students. Arranged marriage. Romance. Indian culture. Identity. High achieving, second generation Indian Americans, Dimple Shah and Rishi Patel have both won positions at their choice of university;...
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Jul 23 2017

The Wayward Witch and the Feelings Monster by Sally Rippin

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Polly and Buster series. Hardie Grant Egmont. ISBN 9781760129019
(Age: 7-9) Highly recommended. Theme: Witches, Monsters, Friendship, Resilience, Acceptance.
Standing up for a friend is being a hero, Polly. No matter who that friend might be. Witch or monster....
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Jul 23 2017

Truthwitch by Susan Dennard

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The Witchlands book 1. Pan Macmillan, 2016. ISBN 9781509825028
(Age: 15+) Highly recommended. Fantasy. 2017 Locus Awards nominee. Safiya and Iseult are two young women with uncanny powers. Safi is a Truthwitch, who can tell when something is true. This power is very valuable and...
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Jul 23 2017

Windwitch by Susan Dennard

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The Witchlands book 2. Pan Macmillan, 2016. ISBN 9781447282310
(Age: 15+) Highly recommended. Fantasy. Windwitch continues the story this time giving more detail about Prince Merik, who is a Windwitch convinced that his sister is not looking after their kingdom. After his...
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Jul 23 2017

Olga and the smelly thing from nowhere by Elise Gravel

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Harper Collins, 2017. ISBN 9780062351265
(Age: 7-9) Themes: Pets, Science Research. Olga and the Smelly Thing from Nowhere is a notebook novel combining easy-to-read text with red, pink and black cartoon graphics. The protagonist Olga is an unusual quirky character, who wants to...
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Jul 23 2017

Ollie's treasure by Lynn Jenkins

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Ill. by Kirrili Lonergan. EK Books, 2017. ISBN 9781925335422
When Ollie receives a letter from his grandmother in the form of a treasure map, he is very excited. What could his treasure be? Could it be a new truck? Or walkie-talkies? Or maybe that game he had been wanting forever? Full...
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Jul 21 2017

Shallow in the deep end by Tiwi College Alalinguwi Jarrakarlinga with Jared Thomas

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Omnibus Books, 2017. ISBN 9781742762692
(Age: 7-10) Recommended. This book has been written by joint authors, a group of women from Tiwi College Alalinguwi Jarrakarlinga with assistance from Jared Thomas and with the support of Indigenous Literacy Foundation.
Shallow is a baby water...
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Jul 21 2017

High flyers by Laura Sieveking

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The Royal Academy of Sports series. Random House, 2017. ISBN 9781925324587
(Age: 8-11) Recommended. Themes: Gymnastics, School Life, Friendship. Abigail Rogers is a passionate young gymnast who trains hard and loves to improve on her skills. Her dream is to win a place at The...
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Jul 21 2017

Glitterwing's Book Week blunder by Sally Sutton

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Miniwings book 1. Scholastic, 2017. ISBN 9781775434238
(Age: 6-10) This book will appeal to many young readers - flying miniature horses (including a unicorn), glitter, sparkles and hijinks. What more could you ask for! This is the first book in a series about a set of toy ponies...
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Jul 21 2017

The stars are fire by Anita Shreve

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Little Brown, 2017. ISBN 9781408702994
(Age: 16+) Set in Maine, US, in 1947, the story begins with endless rain but with a season change everything turns to summer drought - the parched land and hot wind have people on tenderhooks anxious about the threat of fire. Claire is a young...
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Jul 21 2017

Speed Zone by Stephanie Bendixsen

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Ill. by Chris Kennett . Pixel Raiders series book 3. Scholastic Australia, 2017. ISBN 9781760275679
(Age: 8+) Themes: Digital Worlds, Computer Games, Fantasy, Adventure. Bajo and Hex's Pixel Raiders series continues with level three of the game world in Speed Zone....
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Jul 19 2017

Falling by Anne Provoost

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20th Anniversary edition. Allen and Unwin, 2017. ISBN 9781760293925
(Age: 15+) Recommended. Depicting racial tensions between migrants and established citizens of an unspecified region in France or Belgium, the prescience of the author is underlined in this 20th Century anniversary...
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Jul 19 2017

Dogs and doctors by Elen Caldecott

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The Marsh Road Mysteries.Bloomsbury, 2017. ISBN 9781408876060
(Age: 9+) Highly recommended. In Dogs and Doctors readers meet a group of children who are rather good at solving mysteries. Sylvie has to stay in hospital and on her first night Barry, the therapeutic dog, is...
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Jul 19 2017

Here Kitty, Kitty by Melanie Alexander

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Lexi and Lettie Trusty Twin Detectives. Random House, 2017. ISBN 9780143784135
(Age: 6-10) Lexi and Lottie have their own cartoon show based on their sleuthing antics. They are centred around Appleton Animal Park where, with their parents, they are involved with a variety...
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Jul 19 2017

Whizz's Internet oopsie by Sally Sutton

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Ill. by Kirsten Richards. Miniwings series. Scholastic, 2017. ISBN 9781775434245
(Age: 6-8) Themes: Horses, Sisters, Internet, Problem Solving. Young Sophia and her sister Clara receive a special magical gift from their Nana, six colourful, little winged horses. At first, the...
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Jul 19 2017

A Canadian year -Twelve months in the life of Canada's kids by Tania McCartney

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Ill. by Tina Snerling. EK, 2017 ISBN 9781925335439
Continuing this fabulous series which includes A Kiwi Year, An Aussie Year, and a host of...
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Jul 19 2017

Finding Nevo by Nevo Zisin

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Black Dog Books, 2017. ISBN 9781925381184
(Age: 12+) Highly recommended. Sexuality, Coming out, Trans gender. In a society where male and female roles are delineated, someone growing up knowing they fit neither one nor the other will be highly confused and disorientated. So it is with...
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Jul 19 2017

Superstar Tapir by Polly Faber and Clara Vulliamy

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Mango and Bambang, book 4. Walker Books, 2016. ISBN 9781406361490
(Age: 7-10) Highly recommended. Superstar Tapir is the fourth book in this delightful series starring Mango and the tapir Bambang. It is divided into four separate stories, each quite unique and...
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Jul 19 2017

Everything, everything by Nicola Yoon

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Ill. by David Yoon. Random House Children's Books, 2017. ISBN 9780552576482
(Age: 13+) Themes of romance, family relationships, illness. This is Nicola Yoon's debut novel; a touching romance between two young people wanting to experience love but it could be the death of one of...
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Jul 19 2017

The whole thing together by Ann Brashares

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Penguin Random House, 2017. ISBN 9780141386300
(Age:12+) Recommended. The novel The whole thing together, written by Ann Brashares describes the realisation that people saving and caring for something or someone can be brought together by a sudden disaster. The whole thing...
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Jul 19 2017

The naughty naughty baddies by Mark Sperring and David Tazzyman

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Bloomsbury Publishing, 2017. ISBN 9781408849736
(Ages: 2 - 6) Highly recommended. Picture Book. A highly improbable and amusing tale whereby 4 baddies hatch a 'dastardly' plot to steal the spots of the Queen's little dog amongst other minor naughtiness like the sticking out of tongues...
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Jul 19 2017

Nanette's baguette by Mo Willems

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Walker Books, 2016. ISBN 9781406376210
(Age: 2 - 6) Recommended. Picture Book. It's all in the rhyme! Just exactly how many words can one get to rhyme with baguette?? You will quickly find out on reading Mo Willems' latest picture book.
Cleverly illustrated with photographs of his...
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Jul 17 2017

The perfect thing by Sally Morgan

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Ill. by Ambelin Kwaymullina. Scholastic, 2017. ISBN 9781742991122
(Age: 4+) Highly recommended. Aboriginal themes, Grandparents, Solutions, Family, Imagination. When Grandpa wants to go to the park, Lily thinks up all the excuses in the world She tells him that the dog has eaten her...
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Jul 17 2017

The city bleeds gold by Lucy Saxon

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Tellus series book 3. Bloomsbury, 2017. ISBN 9781408847732
(Age: 11+) Recommended. An initial impression was one of disappointment, starting with the all too convenient map of the Tellus archipelago. Learning that the protagonist Noah has an alter ego, Daniel, who is pretty much...
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Jul 17 2017

Tiny Timmy on tour! by Tim Cahill and Julian Gray

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Ill. by Heath McKenzie. Tiny Timmy series, book 5. Scholastic, 2017. ISBN 9781743816509
(Age: 7-9) Recommended. Themes: Soccer, Team Sports, School stories. Tiny Timmy and his soccer team performed extremely well at the Gala Day and now they have the opportunity to play against...
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Jul 17 2017

Muddle and Mo's worm surprise by Nikki Slade Robinson

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Starfish Bay Children's Books, 2017. ISBN 9781760360306
(Age: 3+) Goats, Friendship, Food. Friends, Muddle and Mo are going to have lunch. Muddle collects a range of worms to add to the lunch basket: big and little, fast and slow. They then must take the basket up a rather steep hill to...
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Jul 17 2017

Trouble tomorrow by Terry Whitebeach and Serafino Enadio

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Allen and Unwin, 2017. ISBN 9781760291464
(Age: 12+) Recommended. Civil war, Refugees, Refugee camps, Survival, Sudan. Obulejo and his friends must run for their lives when rebels come, searching for boys his age to train as boy soldiers. He is living in a boarding school, St Xaviers,...
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Feb 02 2017

Literature to support the Science curriculum Foundation -7 by Fran Knight and Pat Pledger

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Pledger Consulting, 2016. ISBN 9781876678470
Highly recommended for educators. Subjects: Science curriculum; Fiction; Annotated bibliography. Fran Knight and Pat Pledger continue to write first-rate reference tools for teachers in primary school education, which focus on key curriculum...
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Jan 30 2017

Literature to support the Australian curriculum: HISTORY. Foundation - Year 10 by Fran Knight and Pat Pledger

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LinksPlus, revised 2016. ISBN 9781876678265
Highly recommended - for educators. Subjects: History curriculum; Fiction; Annotated bibliography. Fran Knight and Pat Pledger are committed to providing educators and librarians with excellent reference tools that support the Australian...
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Feb 21 2016

Fiction gems: Recommended fiction lists for Upper Primary and Lower Secondary students by Fran Knight and Pat Pledger

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Pledger Consulting, 2016. ISBN 9781876678456
Teacher reference. What a great resource for those charged with purchasing or recommending reading material for Upper Primary and Lower Secondary students. The Middle School aged reader can have specific interests or reading demands and keeping...
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