We have come to the final stop on our Read Around the World adventure — Australia. I have six fantastic books to share with you! This booklist includes gorgeous Aboriginal artwork by Bronwyn Bancroft, humorous tales of childhood adventures from Alison Lester, and a unique wordless picture book by Jeannie Baker.
Big Rain Coming by Katrina Germein and Bronwyn Bancroft. ”On Sunday afternoon Old Stephen nodded to the dark clouds spreading in the south. ‘Big rain coming,’ he said.” InBig Rain Coming, children and animals wait for rain to come. It seems like the rain will never come. The beautiful bold illustrations and simple plot make this book a great choice to read aloud to a group of children. Ages 3+
Possum Magic by Mem Fox and Julie Vivas. A story about two possoms, Hush and Grandma Poss. Grandma Poss uses her magic to make Hush invisible. When Hush wants to be visible again, the two go on a trek around Australia in search of something to make Hush visible. Along the way, they eat many traditional Australian foods. Ages 3+
Home by Jeannie Baker. A wordless picture book that depicts the transformation of an urban neighborhood when people plant greenery and care for the space. If you enjoy Home, look for Jeannie Baker’s other wordless picture books, including Belonging and Hidden Forest. Ages 3+
Why I Love Australia by Bronwyn Bancroft. Why I Love Australia depicts a variety of Australian scenes: boab trees on the plains, a coral reef, the rooftops of suburban homes, and more. This book features Bronwyn Bancroft’s beautiful Aboriginal artwork. Each of Bancroft’s paintings is accompanied by a simple caption (e.g. “Boab tree families, bountiful in shape, standing on the plains.”) Ages 4+
Are We There Yet?: A Journey Around Australia by Alison Lester. Alison Lester is a fun tour guide as she describes a family trip around Australia. Are We There Yet? introduced kids to the variety of things to see and do in Australia and at the same time maintains the feel of a story about a family vacation. In this story, eight-year-old Grace and her family visit the pinnacles at Perth, squeeze into a camper, snorkel at Turquoise Bay, entertain themselves as they drive, hike between round red domes in the Outback, stop for a picnic lunch, and have many more adventures. Ages 5+
Two of our favorite authors!
- Alison Lester – Are We There Yet?, The Farm
- Bronwyn Bancroft – Big Rain Coming, Why I Love Australia, Possum and Wattle: My Big Book of Australian Words
- Australian Damper (bread on a stick) — Kidspot
- Australian Pavlova (meringue with fruit) — Epicurious’s Around the World in 80 Dishes
- Possum Magic by Mem Fox – Design Mom (Australia)
- An Australian ABC of Animals by Bronwyn Bancroft — Paper Tigers (Australia)
- Why I Love Australia by Bronwyn Bancroft — My Little Bookcase (Australia)
- Are We There Yet? by Alison Lester — Big A Little A (Australia)
- A Summery Saturday Morning by Margaret Mahy and Selina Young — A Wrung Sponge (New Zealand)