Kids’ Club Review by Genevye: Once

Once / Gleitzman, Morris

Every book you read in the ‘Once’ collection has different emotions – that’s what I like about it.

I gave this book 5 stars because once you read Once, you want to keep reading on and on, luckily there is a collection!
I recommend 11-13 year-olds to read this collection because there is some violence because this book is based in the olden days when Hitler demanded to kill all the Jewish – which is extremely awful.

I won’t give too much of the book away – so you can read it yourself!

Enjoy reading!

5 stars

Reviewed by Genevye from Johnsonville and , 9 years old

Kids’ Club Review by Lara: Within these walls

Within these wallsWithin these walls, by Robyn Bavati

‘Within These Walls’ is an awesome book about a jewish child living in Poland during the holocaust. She and her family move into a ghetto and one by one her family start to die. Soon, her mum, dad, little brother, older sister, younger sister, older brother, grandad, and grandma are all gone and she is alone. But hen she finds her cousins and escapes the ghetto. She lives in a dark cellar for 19 months until the war is over. I would recommend this book for kids aged 11-13.

5 stars

Reviewed by Lara from Tawa and , 10 years old

New Historical Fiction

In the current context of international tensions, isn’t it a good time to pick some good new fiction that will make you think, understand and reflect on important issues such as war, refugee and society crisis?

Alexander Altmann A10567, by Suzy Zail Image courtesy of Syndetics

Fourteen-year-old Alexander Altmann doesn’t need to look at the number tattooed on his arm. A10567: he knows it by heart. He also knows that to survive Auschwitz, he has to toughen up.

When he is given the job of breaking in the commander’s new horse, their survival becomes intertwined.

Alexander knows the animal is scared and damaged, but he must win its trust. If he fails, they will both be killed.

Age 10 and +


Image courtesy of SyndeticsMy brother’s secret, by Dan Smith

Twelve-year-old Karl is a good German boy. He wants his country to win the war – after all, his father has gone away to fight.

But when tragedy strikes and his older brother Stefan gets into trouble, he begins to lose his faith in Hitler. Before long, he’s caught up in a deadly rebellion.

Age 10 and +



Image courtesy of Syndetics

Refuge, by Jackie French

When a boat carrying a group of asylum seekers is sunk by a freak wave, Faris wakes from the shipwreck in an Australia he’s always dreamed of. There are kangaroos grazing under orange trees and the sky is always blue. On a nearby beach, Faris meets a group of young people who have come from far different times and places.

They are also seeking refuge, and each has their own story of why they had to leave their country to make a new life for themselves. It is only when Faris chooses to return to “real life” and find his father in Australia that he learns the extraordinary truth about the friends he made on the golden beach.

Age 10 and +


Image courtesy of SyndeticsValentine Joe, by Rebecca Stevens

Rose goes to Ypres in Belgium to visit the graves of those who died in the Great war. There, the name of one boy stays in her mind: fifteen-year-old Valentine Joe.

That night, Rose hears marching and when she looks out of her window, she sees a young soldier…

Age 10 and +