Book Review: Ten Pound Pom, by Carole Wilkinson and Liz Anelli

Available from 1 October in bookshops nationwide.

cv_ten_pound_pomCarole Wilkinson and her family emigrated from the UK to Australia under a scheme known officially as The United Kingdom-Australia Free and Assisted Passage Agreement. Post World War II, Australian industry was thriving and the Australian Government decided to encourage immigration, particularly from the UK. Ex-servicemen came free, others paid ten pounds, with children under 18 coming in free. These immigrants became known as Ten Pound Poms. The scheme continued until 1982.

The book is written in the present tense, from Carole’s perspective (of course!) and illustrated brilliantly by Liz Anelli. All of the experiences of long-distance ship travel are captured delightfully and will resonate with many older readers. For the younger readers, and I hope there will be many, it’s a great personal story, and the child’s voice comes through clearly. It has great appeal – there are lots of points of interest, and because of the episodic nature, it can be taken in small doses and thus enjoyed over a longer time.

It would be a great addition to school libraries and could be used successfully in social studies classes, I think.  It would suit able readers in the middle school years, or it would be a happy addition to home libraries.

Reviewed by Sue Esterman

Ten Pound Pom
by Carole Wilkinson and Liz Anelli
Published by Walker Books

Book Review: Atmospheric: The Burning Story of Climate Change, by Carole Wilkinson

cv_atmosphericAvailable in bookshops nationwide.

The topic of climate change is one of those contentious subjects that gets people so puffed up they can literally blow their stacks during what started out as a gentle discussion on changes in the weather pattern.

The central points of reference in Wilkinson’s book are the atmosphere’s importance to us and the way we have treated it. It is Wilkinson’s contention – backed up by a truckload of evidence – that we use our atmosphere like a rubbish dump, putting into it whatever we feel like, without thought of consequences: treating the atmosphere as we would a sack of recycling rubbish. Once we can no longer see it, we don’t give a poke.

This is not new behaviour, as Wilkinson points out: humans have been polluting the atmosphere for a very long time, especially in an industrial sense. Damage has been done and we need to take responsibility for cleaning it up and changing our behaviour, as individuals and as a society, whether in a home/school or work situation. The atmosphere so affects the quality of the life we live, we would be foolish not to care.

We need to educate and we need to start that educating from the get go. Preschools and Primary Schools are introducing and teaching ways and means right across the curriculum to do this throughout New Zealand, we need to support this as much as possible and introduce the lessons the children can teach us in our home/work space.

This is a well-written, easy-to-read-and-understand book, with great illustrations. While directed at the YA market, there should be a copy of this book in every School and Public Library as it is an excellent resource for children from Primary School onwards and for adults as well.

Reviewed by Marion Dreadon

Atmospheric: The Burning Story of Climate Change
by Carole Wilkinson
Published by Black Dog Books
ISBN 9781925126372

Email digest: Monday 18 June 2012

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Question of the day
Can anyone name a memorable book they’ve seen recently that was self-published? Email if you do.

Join poet Paula Green at Auckland Central Library Tues night

Keen to read more by indigenous authors? Sign up for ANZ Lit Lovers Indigenous Literature Week

Two days until our winter read 2012 begins. I’ve just set up our Good Reads group if you care to join

Book News
A Monster Calls wins first Carnegie and Kate Greenaway prize double

Congratulations to New Zealand author Helen Lowe who has won the 2012 Morningstar Award by popular vote

Quote 15OFFJUNE to take 15% off MILK Tailor Made Books – a new print-your-own book service from PQ Blackwell

Book reviews
Blood Brothers by Carole Wilkinson

Stonemouth by Iain Banks

Book review: Blood Brothers by Carole Wilkinson

This book is in bookstores now.

“The fourth book in the intriguing series of Dragon Keeper.

You were translating a transcript, because no one (but you) knew that language. Your eyes started aching and it was hard to keep your eyes open. You went to refill your water jar and you heard a wind-chime sound, then you turned. Standing in front of you was a dragon.

That is how Kai (the dragon) and Tao (the boy who was translating the transcript) kind-of knew each other. Kai said he was on a quest and Tao was his dragon keeper. On the way, there was a battle and by coincidence they met a girl called Pema. She was a thief, and good at telling white lies. There were a lot of difficulties along the way and at one point everybody was separated. Even Tao and Kai.

Then the real problem came. Sha. She was a kind healer, until when she lost her emotions over love and her dragon lings. While she was flying down, lonely as ever, she got captured. After that Sha got turned into a man-eating beast. One day Tao and Kai was near that area where Sha was one day…
Will Tao and Kai survive? What happened to Sha? Will there be a happy ending? Read the book to find out.

I felt the book was a page-turner and a book that you can’t put down.”

Reviewed by Jennia Deng, aged 12.

Blood Brothers
by Carole Wilkinson
Published by Black Dog Books
ISBN 9781742031897