Looking Back, Looking Forward: Some holiday reading recommendations

July 10th, 2012 ยท No Comments »

For those still on school holidays, wondering what books you should read, wonder no more for I am here to help!!

I know Historical fiction and Dystopian future stories are really popular at the moment but unfortunately (for me) I write about the here and now! In order for my books to feature in either the historical fiction or dystopian future genres, you will need to find a time machine and either go back, or forward in time, depending on your preference. While I would prefer this, an easier option might be to check out my recommendations below:

LOOKING BACK (historical fiction):

I’ve met a lot of kids lately who love historical fiction. There’s a lot of good stuff out there – I know girls particularly enjoy books by Belinda Murrell (such as The Forgotten Pearl, a WW2 adventure). I was recently given The Secrets of Eromanga by Sheryl Gwyther, which delves into the ancient world of dinosaurs living in Australia โ€“ I look forward to reading that. Scholastic have a range of Our Story books for both boys and girls, depending on how bloody, or romantic, you like your history (personally, I like my history to have elements of both). Also check out David Metzenthen‘s Blackwater, set in Australia at the end of WW1.

But my real advice for you is to never go past a classic โ€“ here are the Australian historical novels I read and loved when I was in primary school:

Playing Beatie Bow by Ruth Park (set 1800s in the Rocks, Sydney); The Sun on the Stubble by Colin Thiele (depression era); Baily’s Bones by Victor Kelleher (concerning an Aboriginal massacre); Seven Little Australians by Ethel Turner (1890s, set in Sydney)

LOOKING FORWARD (dystopian futures):

It seems every man and his dog have read The Hunger Games Trilogy by now, though quite frankly most dogs miss the satirical themes. If you love dystopian futuristic stories, you should also check out Chaos Walking Trilogy (The Knife of Never Letting Go, Ask and the Answer, Monsters of Men) by Patrick Ness, and the numerically challenged Uglies trilogy (Uglies, Pretties, Specials, Extras) by Scott Westerfeld.

I hear good things about the Rosie Black Chronicles by Lara Morgan, though only the first two are out so far. A new series, called The Tribe, by Ambelin Kwaymullina, has just been released and looks good also โ€“ the first one is called The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf.

The classics you MUST read in this genre (though these are not specifically children’s books, so be warned) are:

1984 by George Orwell; The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood; Brave New World by Aldous Huxley; Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury; and one that I loved as a kid was Z for Zachariah by Robert C. O’Brien.

What are you waiting for? Get reading.

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