Because Amelia Smiled: how a little girl's smiles went round the world and back

Because Amelia Smiled: how a little girl's smiles went round the world and back

This is a wonderfully circular book. Amelia smiles, her smile is contagious and spreads all around the world and finally finds its way back to her - and she smiles again!

I love a book that shows (but doesn’t preach about) the interconnectedness of people around the world – this book manages exactly that.

And I think the key is the joyfulness of the illustrations. There’s a fuzziness* to them that invites the reader into the edges of the world each character inhabits. 

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a peaceful Nullabor Christmas - full of delight and excitement

a peaceful Nullabor Christmas - full of delight and excitement

ages 2 to 12 years
A perfect Australian Christmas picture book, it’s the story of Kathleen – a little girl who lives along Australia’s Nullarbor Plain – and of the Tea and Sugar Train which used to travel across the Plain each week. A charming balance to the OTT commercialism that sometimes surrounds Christmas.

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exploring the delights of home, the blessing of a natural environment, and the strength in compromise

exploring the delights of home, the blessing of a natural environment, and the strength in compromise

ages 0 to 8 years
Books about happy homes speak to our need for security, love, generosity and kindness. Books about happy homes that are different to our own also offer the comforting idea that in the midst of tremendous diversity, there is more that connects us than separates us.

The Tree does all of that while extending those same ideas, thoughts and feelings 

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intergenerational love and the Orcas of Canada - a tale to prompt one's own family storytelling

intergenerational love and the Orcas of Canada - a tale to prompt one's own family storytelling

Set in Canada, Waiting for the Whales makes a really nice stepping stone to family storytelling. It’s about a grandfather living a simple life of gardening and watching the seasons. It's a picture book to prompt one's own family stories – leading easily to thoughts, memories and 'after' conversations.
ages 4 to 12 years

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farming + fibre production - how wool gets from the sheep's back to our back

farming + fibre production - how wool gets from the sheep's back to our back

ages 2 to 8 years
Did you know that if a sheep is ready for shearing it’s important that they don’t get wet? Or that a shearer can shear up to 200 sheep a day? Or that the record for shearing a sheep is 1 minute and 30 seconds? All this and more in 'George'.
 

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a beautiful way to think about food, abundance and responsibility

a beautiful way to think about food, abundance and responsibility

ages 3 to grownup
For adults, teens and children ... an eye opening look at the way the world eats.  Families around the world are pictured with a weeks worth of food. The contrasts are extraordinary, it's fascinating stuff.  

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integrity, kindness and creativity can change the world

integrity, kindness and creativity can change the world

ages baby to 8 years
I lent this book to my children’s school and it disappeared for a week or two. I shouldn’t have worried – it came back to me with a new plastic cover, making it one of our most carefully preserved books! Here's how it goes:

Annabelle lives in a cold and colourless little town, but one day she finds a box of yarn of all sorts of colours. So she knits herself a sweater. Then, since there is ‘extra yarn’, she knits her dog a sweater.

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