BookSeekers news: last month we were sad to say goodbye to Zoe my co-presenter but the first item on the agenda this month was to welcome our new presenter, Vanessa. We also welcomed back one of our number, Heather who has amazing pins sticking out of her left arm. Hope it’s better soon Heather!
This month we had 18 BookSeekers at the meeting. We had fun creating some very cool new mythical creatures in our first game. Look out for the Rabeepua, the Zettephant, the Kigleep and the Crocphantos!
The kids also managed to name most of the mythical creatures in our guessing game, although some didn’t know what a Faun looked like.
It is always sad to see members move on and this month we farewelled one of our oldest members, Rachel, who is now at college. We will miss her witty reviews and enthusiasm.
Reviews of fantasy books were great with some wanting to talk about more than one. Here are links to some of the awesome books we reviewed this month – check them out!
Next meeting: June 12th at 4pm. See you there!
In April we reviewed the animal stories we had read and took out fantasy books for next months meeting. For our game we began some fantasy stories with animals in them. The first line had been given to us and then it was all our own imagination! Here are a few of our stories:
- Wow! A 3 three-toed sloth hanging from the branch of a … fig tree, but it was not an ordinary tree. It was a castle and then the thing vanished. (Theo)
- I could see the weeping crocodile out of the corner of my eye … It was the ugliest, most beastly thing I had ever seen in my life. I wondered if I could go deep enough to swim under it. Suddenly out of nowhere, another one appeared right in front of me and opened its ghastly mouth to bite me and … SLASH! I moved out of the way just in time but at the same time that also blew my cover. Now the other one had seen me and was after me! (Visaanth)
- As I poked my head through the earth, all I could see was a large foot above me … that looked almost as big as one of the giant rats in the sewers of Orion. I could hear growling; Animal growling. The black cheetah, for it soon became apparent that that was what it was. It moved and its foot and I discovered it was only my pet black winged cheetah trying to get me out of the hole. I got out and climbed onto him and we flew away towards the black jungle. When we landed we trekked for an hour and then entered the gates of Orion. A giant rat squeaked and tried to bite my leg but I dodged nimbly aside and it crashed into the city wall. Suddenly I was surrounded by a circle of archers. In ten seconds, five volleys had been fired. Suddenly a hole opened in the ground below and I fell down to the depths of the sewer… (Andrew)
- The creature’s little ferrety nose twitched as it stared at me … I picked up the mouse then suddenly the world grew bigger! The suddenly I was the size of the mouse! “What! How did that happen?” I asked the mouse. “I want you to follow me” replied the mouse. “What! You spoke!” I screeched. “Just follow me” said the mouse calmly. “Oh” I replied. So off I went after the mouse. It took me to an underground hollow where it opened up into a village of talking mice. “You have arrived” greeted the mice. “Uh I don’t know for what?” I replied uneasily. “From the evil cat” answered the mice. “A cat! Easy. I’ll do it” I replied confidently and off I went to catch the cat. Up a mountain I climbed to a big castle with a big rusty gate. In I went. I found Claws, but he had magic powers and he knocked me aside. Then just as he was about to kill me, lightening shot out of my hands, right into Claws, destroying him. I had won. I went back to the mouse village and I was greeted by cheers. I was a hero. I had saved the mouse village or had I… (Megan)
- As if from nowhere, a small creature appeared at the cabin door, holding a … lolly pop. He winked his tiny eyes at me. In an instant we were gone. I slapped myself in the head, wondering if I could have imagined the whole thing. The next day it hit me, it all must be magik. Magik of a sort so rare, that it had never been recorded in this world before. I’m smart. Too smart to know that things like this don’t happen by accident. They happen for a reason. And I will search for the reason as long as it takes, which ever paths it will lead me and whatever dooms shall befall me. I am smart, so I’ll survive! (Amy)
- The day my doormouse packed his bag and left home … I felt really happy. He left me a note saying “I’m running away” but it was in invisible ink so I couldn’t read it. I couldn’t sleep. All I thought about was Fred. I felt sad for him. I got out of bed and tried to look for him; then mum saw me and pinched me. Then it hit me, it was only a stupid old dream! (Josh)
And here are some of the books we read:
The Star of Kazan by Eva Ibbotson
I listened to this on CD and, as with most of the stories I listen to, I really enjoyed it. Enjoying a story on CD often depends on the reader and Patricia Connolly reads this well.
The Star of Kazan is the story of a baby girl found abandoned in a church outside Vienna. Her rescuers are a cook and a house maid and they take her to live with them and the family of three professors where they work.
Annika learns to cook and clean alongside her ‘mothers’ and on her ‘found day’ the professors take them all out for a treat. When she is 12 they take her to see the famous Lippizana stallions at the show they put on for the Emperor.
Annika is always dreaming of the day when her ‘real’ mother will knock on the professors’ door and want her back. And then one day, just that happens, but all is not as she thought it would be, and an adventure soon starts.
With our topic this month of Science we played a game about statistics. Different coloured discs were handed around and for each colour we had to name a favourite place, or game, or hobby, or book, or “if you could change your name, what would you choose”. Then we looked at the number of people who voted for those things. London was the fav place to go, Monopoly the fav game, fav hobbies were Reading, Drawing, Scouts and Sports, other names we would like to have were Amanda, Alex, Hazel and James, and the fav books were “most things” by Jacqueline Wilson and Skullduggery Pleasant.
Our new members, Emma and Isabella wrote these reviews:
“All my life I’ll think of you, I promise I will. I won’t ever forget you.” Bertie rescues an orphaned white lion cub from the African veldt. Bertie and the lion cub were best friends till Bertie is sent to boarding school. Bertie never forgets the lion. Bertie grows up and goes to war. Then when he is older he finds the lion again. This is a great book and I recommend it for 7 yrs and up. (My dad liked it too)
When Arthur and Lucy are sent to stay with their uncle at the seaside, Tumtum and Nutmeg decide to go along and keep an eye on them. But then the mice stumble upon an abandoned dolls house and a mysterious treasure map and all sorts of adventures unfold. It’s a good book because it has lots of bits where you just want to read more. It’s a very exciting book and I would recommend it to anyone.
Some of the Non Fiction books we read this last month are linked below.
Jasper Ludlow has been left behind! First his parents left him in the charge of his uncle Trump and now his uncle has gone too. Luckily the Travelling Restaurant is tied up at the wharf and Jasper is able to go onboard to hide from the Provisional Monarch’s troops. And so begins his quest to find his parents and little sister Sibilla. He is helped by Dr Rocket and Polly who run the restaurant and along the way he meets pirates, learns to cook, rescues Beatrix from Lady Gall (the Provisional Monarch trying to make herself queen) and learns a lot about the royal family and his own destiny. Good NZ fiction
A sample of the many amazing New Zealanders who have achieved fame in their lifetime. This anthology covers sporting greats such as Sir Colin Meads, Scott Dixon and Barbara Kendall; Artists, including Sir Peter Jackson, Rhys Darby and Margaret Mahy; Adventurers Sir Edmund Hillary and Jean Batten; Scientists Ingrid Visser and Sir William Pickering; and many more. This book has concise stories of their lives and accomplishments, with some very funny anecdotes. There are great illustrations by cartoonist Bruce Potter who draws outlandish caricatures for us to laugh at.
We had a great little group this month and like our BookBuster buddies we looked at zines. These are little paper booklets usually written in computer-printed or handwritten text that have been photocopied and stapled together. They can be about any subject that interests you!
We started to make some of our own and there were some great ideas, like poems, stories and cartoons. We’re looking forward to working on these some more at our next meeting. Here’s a handy link with lots of tips and ideas: Zine-Making for Kids so you can give it a go too.
We also reviewed the graphic novels that we took home last month and had fun reading. This is not a genre that many of us read and we were surprised at what we found. There are lots more out there than just the Superman or Spiderman comics. Click on the book covers to see some of the ones we enjoyed.
We had a great time with a visit from our friend Monty who showed us a selection of graphic novels and junior comics. We are getting a lot more of these in the collection and it was fun to see so many different styles. Black and white, no words, full page illustrations, panel illustrations, true stories and super heroes, were just some to flick through.
We also played charades, reviewed the historical books that we had read over the last month and had a little party for our mid year – the chippies went pretty quickly!
Here’s a selection of some of the comics we recommend: