Tagchildren's picture books

Bronwyn Saunders and Andrew Plant – Diprotodon – A Megafauna Journey

CSIRO Publishing, Australia, 2023
Cover and text design and layout by MDCN Creative

This book will be welcomed by the many school librarians who are constantly trying to meet requests from young students for information books.

Bronwyn Saunders spoke to Barbie about Diprotodon – A Megafauna Journey
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Samantha Tidy & Aśka – When Grandma Burnt her Bra

EK Books, an imprint of Exisle Publishing Pty Ltd, Australia, 2023
Design by Aśka (askastorytelling.com)

Samantha Tidy, both as a writer and publisher, has long interested herself in matters of social and environmental import. This picture book takes us back to the days of the women activists through the eyes of a child, Maggie, who is trying to make sense of her grandmother’s world. Amongst other things, they share a name.

Samantha Tidy talks to Barbie about When Grandma Burnt Her Bra
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Tania McCartney – Plume Christmas Elf

Hardie Grant Explore, Australia, 2023
Design Tania McCartney

This is the fourth Plume book and, I believe, the most visually beautiful of the little penguin stories created by author-illustrator Tania McCartney. Clearly Tania is a fan of Christmas and all its celebratory fun and colour, trees, lights and tinsel.

Tania McCartney talks to Barbie about Plume Christmas Elf
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Maxine Beneba Clarke – We Know a Place

Lothian Children’s Books, Hachette, Australia, 2023
Cover and internal design by Kinart

We Know a Place joins the cavalcade of books for all ages in praise of bookstores. Maxine has produced both text and pictures for this work.

Maxine Beneba Clarke talks to Barbie about We Know a Place
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Amelia McInerney and Lucinda Gifford – Neil The Amazing Sea Cucumber

Affirm Press, Australia, 2023
Cover and internal design by Kirby Armstrong @ Affirm Press

Pairing Amelia McInerney (words) and Lucinda Gifford (pictures) was an excellent editorial decision as they obviously understand one another’s temperaments and intentions well.

Barbie spoke to Amelia McInerney about Neil The Amazing Sea Cucumber
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Sarah Wallace and Lesley McGee – Emma’s Freckles

Little Pink Dog Books, Australia, 2023
Cover design by Lesley McGee

Based on the Gaelic legend that explains how people came to have freckles, this story is about valuing difference. Heroine Emma wonders why she has freckles and her classmates do not.

Sarah Wallace talks about Emma’s Freckles
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Tania McCartney – Dorrie

Angus & Robertson, an imprint of HarperCollinsChIldren’sBooks, Australia, 2023

Dorrie/The Creator of Blinky Bill is the latest dip into literary history by Canberra-based author/illustrator Tania McCartney (in 2018 she wrote about May Gibbs, creator of Snugglepot and Cuddlepie). As well as being a prolific creator of children’s fiction picture books, Tania has long taken an intense interest in many aspects of Australian history, geography, natural history and society.

Barbie talks to Tania McCartney about Dorrie
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Samantha Tidy (words) and Susannah Crispe (pictures) – Cloudspotting

Windy Hollow Books, Australia, 2023

Samantha Tidy’s textual story and Susannah Crispe’s visual story come together perfectly in Cloudspotting (Windy Hollow Books, Australia, 2023). This is a gentle tale of a father and daughter who, while the rest of the family still sleeps, go out crabbing in their boat in the dark chill of early morning.

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Gavin Lockwood  – Ian the Termite

Illustrated by Cain Wheale
Independently published, printed by Amazon Australia, 2022

Gavin Lockwood’s debut picture book is a story about the need for the closeness and reassurance received from a pet. It looks at the perils of consumerism, of having everything material at the expense of the emotional.

Gavin Lockwood talks about Ian the Termite
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Tania McCartney – Plume festival seeker

Hardie Grant Explore, Australia, 2022
Design Jo Hunt and Tania McCartney

Author-illustrator Tania McCartney’s Plume series is now in its third iteration with Plume festival seeker. This is an ebullient and colourful picture book brimming with the author’s zest for sharing the joy of books, travel and words.

Tania McCartney talks to Barbie about Plume festival seeker
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Caroline Magerl – Piano Fingers

Walker Books, Australia, 2022
Text and illustrations by Caroline Magerl

I cannot for a moment pretend to be dispassionate about this book. I am utterly enchanted by it. And ‘enchanted’ is perhaps, an apt word for a book so very much in the realm of magical realism.

Caroline Magerl talks about Piano Fingers
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Tania McCartney – Plume global nibbler

Hardie Grant, Australia, 2022
Design Jo Hunt, Tania McCartney

The second in the Plume series is an exploration of the joys of foods and food culture around the world. As with her other work, Tania McCartney has demonstrated an understanding of how young children think and behave, whilst creating a book which adults will also enjoy.

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Casey Bruning – When I Grow up, I will Shine

Self published, through Tell Well, Canada, 2021

Casey Bruning’s first children’s picture book is as cheering as the little girl who is its main character. It’s a work that focuses on many things positive, starting with human kindness.

Barbie talks to Casey Bruning about When I Grow up, I will Shine
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