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There’s no better way to spend the summer holidays than with a good book in hand, so we’ve narrowed down the best new releases and old favourites for any age.

Toddlers

‘Bluey: Camping’ by Bluey

When Bluey is on a family camping trip, she meets a new friend, Jean Luc. Join them as they plant a tree, hunt a ‘wild pig’ and learn about the magic of friendship. A gorgeous hardback book for kids of all ages. Bluey is an award-winning preschool show about Bluey, a blue heeler pup, and her family. Airing on ABC KIDS, the show has amassed legions of dedicated fans and hugely popular ranges of books, toys, clothes, games and more.

‘Where Are You, Magoo?’ by Briony Stewart

A delightful story about everyone’s favourite dogoo, Magoo. With a ton of instant appeal and perfect energy for the preschool age group, this delightful book has kid-friendly rounded corners and is a joyous rhyming romp of a book for very young children. A companion book to the acclaimed We Love You, Magoo, this story has an interactive seek-and-find element and children will love seeing where Magoo has gone and what he has been up to.

‘Scaredy Bath’ by Zoë Foster Blake

Bath-time is fun! There’s the bubbles, the bath toys and lots of splashing of course. But have you ever wondered what it’s like for the bath? Scaredy Bath does not like bath time… the piping hot water, the gooey muck and especially not the small boisterous grubby ones that shout and splash and make Scaredy all mucky! What’s a bath to do? Will Scaredy Bath ever enjoy bath time?

Primary-school kids

‘Tales of a Fourth-Grade Nothing’ by Judy Blume

Peter thinks he has the world’s biggest problem – his naughty little brother, Fudge. Fudge causes trouble wherever he goes and it’s usually up to Peter to sort out the mess. When Peter wins a tiny green turtle called Dribble, he’s determined to keep it away from his brother. But when Fudge does get his hands on Dribble – disaster strikes!

‘Born to Run’ by Cathy Freeman and Charmaine Ledden-Lewis

As a little girl, Cathy Freeman had only had one dream – to win a gold medal at the Olympics. At twenty-seven years old, that dream came true. At the Sydney 2000 Games, she crossed the finish line, won a gold medal for Australia and became a national hero. How did she go from being a little girl who loved to run to an inspiration to people around the world?

‘Big Shot: Diary of a Wimpy Kid’ Jeff Kinney

When it comes to his athletic career, Greg has officially retired. But after his mom urges him to give sports one more chance, he reluctantly agrees to sign up for basketball. Tryouts are a mess, and Greg is sure he won’t make the cut. But he unexpectedly lands a spot on the worst team. As Greg and his new teammates start the season, their chances of winning even a single game look slim. But in sports, anything can happen.

Tweens

‘Take Me With You When You Go’ by David Levithan and Jennifer Niven

Ezra Ahern wakes up one day to find his older sister, Bea, gone. No note, no sign, nothing but an email address hidden somewhere only he would find it. Ezra never expected to be left behind with their abusive stepfather and their neglectful mother – how is he supposed to navigate life without Bea? For Bea, a message in her inbox changes everything, and she finds herself alone in a new city – without Ez, without a real plan – chasing someone who might not even want to be found.

‘Escape from Mr Lemoncello’s Library’ Chris Grabenstein

Kyle Keeley is the class clown, popular with most kids, (if not the teachers), and an ardent fan of all games: board games, word games, and particularly video games. His hero, Luigi Lemoncello, the most notorious and creative gamemaker in the world, just so happens to be the genius behind the building of the new town library.

‘Amari and the Night Brothers’ by B. B. Alston

Amari Peters has never stopped believing her missing older brother, Quinton, is alive. 

So when she discovers a ticking briefcase in his closet containing a nomination for a summer tryout at the Bureau of Supernatural Affairs, she’s certain the secretive organisation holds the key to locating Quinton – if only she can wrap her head around the idea of supernatural creatures being real. Now she must compete for a spot against kids who’ve known about magic their whole lives. Amari can’t seem to escape their intense scrutiny and doubt – especially once her own supernaturally enhanced talent is deemed ‘illegal’.

Teens + adults

‘Verity’ by Colleen Hoover (released January 25, 2022)

Lowen Ashleigh is a struggling writer on the brink of financial ruin when she accepts the job offer of a lifetime. Jeremy Crawford has hired Lowen to complete the remaining books in a successful series his injured wife, bestselling author Verity, is unable to finish. What Lowen doesn’t expect to uncover in their chaotic office is an unfinished autobiography Verity never intended for anyone to read. Page after page of bone-chilling admissions, including Verity’s recollection of the night their family was forever altered.

‘Olga Dies Dreaming’ by Xochitl Gonzalez

It’s 2017, and Olga and her brother, Pedro ‘Prieto’ Acevedo, are bold-faced names in their hometown of New York. Prieto is a popular congressman representing their gentrifying, Latinx neighborhood in Brooklyn, while Olga is the tony wedding planner for Manhattan’s power brokers. Despite their alluring public lives, behind closed doors things are far less rosy. Sure, Olga can orchestrate the love stories of the one percent, but she can’t seem to find her own… until she meets Matteo, who forces her to confront the effects of long-held family secrets.

‘Where the Crawdads Sing’ by Delia Owens

About to be made into a movie spearheaded by Reese Witherspoon, ‘Where the Crawdads Sing’ follows Kya, the “Marsh Girl” who has haunted quiet Barkley Cove. Kya Clark is barefoot and wild; unfit for polite society. So when the popular Chase Andrews is found dead, locals immediately suspect her. But Kya is not what they say. A born naturalist with just one day of school, she takes life’s lessons from the land, learning the real ways of the world. But while she has the skills to live in solitude forever, she is drawn to two young men from town. Kya opens herself to a new and startling world—until the unthinkable happens.

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haven  

haven is all about family, life and style in Brisbane's inner city suburbs, the Gold Coast, south to Byron Bay. We have been keeping parents in the know for over eight years, with fun, fresh and helpful stories that they can take tips from or treasure in their own library.