Posts Tagged ‘Publisher-Maverick Arts’

Miss Dorothy-Jane Was Ever So Vain

Julie Fulton

miss dorothy janeMiss Dorothy-Jane was ever so vain.
She stared in the mirror for hours.
Was her hair brushed just right? Was her jumper to tight?
Would her hair look much better with flowers?

This has everything my girls like in a story; brightly coloured, fun pictures, a humorous, rhyming story and plenty to talk about. Dorothy-Jane likes to look nice and wants to be noticed. When the Queen is coming to Hamilton Shady she chooses her best outfit so that she will be chosen to welcome her to the village. Dorothy-Jane then has several near misses trying to keep her clothes clean, but when her dog falls in the pond will she sacrifice her appearance to save him? Well I am going to put in a spoiler and tell you that she does, in the end, rescue her dog and the villagers are so impressed that for this reason she is chosen to welcome the Queen to the village.

We all enjoyed laughing over the near misses with the seagull who nearly pooped on Dorothy Jane and the car that nearly splashed her. I liked the moral message in here that your actions are more important than your appearance and we had a good chat about why Dorothy-Jane deserved to meet the Queen.

Verdict: This is another in a great series of books by Julie Fulton and it didn’t disappoint.

Reviewed by Helen

Publisher:Maverick Arts
Publication Date: September 2013
Format: Paperback
Pages: 23
Genre: Picture book
Age: Picure book
Reviewer: Helen
Source: Provided by publisher
Challenge: British book
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Tabitha Posy Is Ever So Nosy

Julie Fulton and Jona Jung(illustrator)

tabitha posyTabitha was a nosey child, always asking questions and giving no-one any peace. A trip to the zoo however may change that a little bit but who knows?

We were given this and as soon as she laid eyes on it my just three year old wanted it read to her. We read it, and read it again and have now read it quite a few times since. As it is written in rhyme and I find those stories very catchy I am nearly at the point where I can recite it all! But the point is that she loves it!

This is a picture book with humour and plenty to talk about on every page. Tabitha Posy is so nosey that the neighbours hide from her, even leaving shoes on the steps like Cinderella in their efforts to get away. She is never where she is meant to be, or paying attention to what she should be; she lies on the classroom floor looking at a spider whilst her teacher is talking. She doesn’t take any notice of instructions, preferring to find out for herself; climbing into the tiger enclosure at the zoo to see if the tiger has been fed, and (as my daughter will tell you) with the big bad wolf watching (greedily!). Her desire to know leads her into big trouble! Much of these things are told as much through the pictures as through the text and it is definitely the eye-catching, colourful and funny illustrations that have grabbed my daughter’s attention and her comments.

As I mentioned the story is told in rhyme and is easy to read. Again there is humour and fun for adults and children. Tabitha does get eaten by the tiger (very funny picture) and is in his tummy until she tickles him with a feather and he doesn’t like it so he spits her out. She then has to have a shower from an elephant to clean her up! Brilliant! I loved the imagination in this. In the end there is a moral to the story as Tabitha concedes she should use books to find out some things and not first hand experience. You could make up your own morals too, if you wished to discuss with your child listening and doing what they are told! The humour in this means the moral side is not overly prominent.

Verdict: This book has gone down a treat in our house, I’ll be keeping an eye out for any more in this series.

Publisher: Maverick Arts
Publication Date: February 2013
Format: Paperback
Pages: 32
Genre: Picture book
Age: Picture book
Reviewer: Helen
Source: Received from publisher
Challenge: British book
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Tamara Small and the Monster’s Ball

Giles Paley-Phillip

On a windy night Tamara lies awake in bed, when she hears a noise outside her room. Suddenly she is whisked away by a hairy arm and taken to the village hall! Luckily it is just the monsters from her neighbourhood inviting her to their ball. She has fun dancing with all the monsters before being sent back home with a lovely slice of slime cake!
Touching on every childhood fear, Tamara Small can hear noises when she goes to bed one night and immediately fears the worst, except in this case, she’s right. The noises are from a monster and he’s come to take her away. But not to fear, it’s to the annual monsters ball of course!

Touching on every childhood fear, Tamara Small can hear noises when she goes to bed one night and immediately fears the worst, except in this case, she’s right. The noises are from a monster and he’s come to take her away. But not to fear, it’s to the annual monsters ball of course!

This is Giles Paley-Phillips, who wrote the brilliant, ‘A fearsome Beastie’s latest offering. In this book, the story once again starts off scarily but the monsters are friendly and just want to have a good time dancing the night away.

I enjoy reading Giles’ books because the poem always flows nicely. Even my husband, bless his heart, as reading aloud doesn’t come naturally, can read Giles’ books with ease. His rhymes are witty and engage children to the story.

Gabriele Antonini is also back with her unique illustrative style, managing to make the monsters not too scary but still full of quirky and captivating character.

Verdict: An enjoyable book that taps into a child’s ‘love to be scared’ relationship with monsters but won’t leave them with nightmares. Instead, they might be listening out for strange noises at night and hoping that they’re the next Tamara Drew!

Reviewed by Karen

Publisher: Maverick Arts Publishing
Publication Date: October 2012
Format: Paperback
Pages: 32
Genre: Picture book
Age: Picture book, Early readers
Reviewer: Karen
Source: Provided by publisher
Challenge: British author
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Grandma Bendy

Izy Penguin

Grandma Bendy is the bendiest grandma.
She has twizzly arms and super stretchy legs!
In the past Grandma Bendy used her skills for bad and was an excellent burglar. When her own house is burgled she realises how unhappy she makes people and gives herself up.
Many years later, when Grandma Bendy is released form a bendy-proof prison, she discovers that no one really likes her. However one day her neighbour has locked her keys in the house and Grandma Bendy is able to come to the rescue and reach in through the letterbox.
She realises that she can use her skills for good and to help other people

We really enjoyed this book – that is me and my two girls (4 and 2 years) – Grandma Bendy kept our attention all the way through. It has bright, colourful illustrations with lots too look at. We particularly liked seeing where Grandma Bendy’s arms were going next!

The story is about Grandma Bendy, the bendiest Grandma in the world! She begins by using her bendiness for bad! She becomes a burglar, but is caught and put in prison and once she comes out she decides not to use her bendy powers any more until she realises she can use them for good. She sets about helping people and makes them, and herself very happy. This was a great morality tale.
It provided us lots to talk about, initially to understand the story (going to prison wasn’t something we had talked about before!) and then about good and bad and choosing how we behave. This is great for discussing choices and consequences in a very non-judgemental way, rather than in that heat of the moment kind of way that it usually seems to happen!

Verdict: This isn’t a book we have read and re-read lots of times but it has a story that will last into the next few years and continue to provide a chance to chat about certain moral lessons for a while. I am sure that I will be bringing it out to use it for this from time to time, if not just to enjoy the story!

Reviewed by Helen

Publisher: Maverick Arts Publishing
Publication Date: May 2012
Format: Paperback
Pages: 32
Genre: Picture Book
Age: Picture Book review
Reviewer: Helen
Source: Provided by publisher
Challenge: None
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The Fearsome Beastie


Giles Paley-Phillips and Gabriele Antonini (illustrator)

The Fearsome Beastie is hungry and he likes nothing more than a yummy child. He is crafty and cunning but will his demise come form a little, old granny?

This is a book that from the very first page had both my children ‘entranced’. Prior to this book, my son was a bit ‘meh’ to listening to stories and would only tolerate noisy or tactile books.

Now, this is,’The Book’ that quite frankly has superpowers. When I need normality to resume in the household due to the kids either squabbling, crying, getting bored and so on I now call out to them asking for,’The Book’ and watch them promptly stop what they’re doing and trot off to get’The Book’.

I knew my kids were hooked from the outset because from the start the poem grips you. With a loud ‘Roar’ the fearsome beastie has awoken from his slumber, making the children in nearby villages tremble with fear. Visually you see him leaving his cave that has human bones dotted around, making you realise that he isn’t your average monster just looking for a cuddle. You then read on, building the sense of menace as the beastie makes his trek towards where the children live and then the unthinkable happens,the children do get eaten up! Cue your child’s mouth dropping open in shock but they are now truly gripped by the story. We then have a rather unconventional gran come to the rescue whose methods of dealing with the beastie make my children shriek with delight every time.

This book truly deserves to be a classic. I remember reading Roald Dahl as a child and feeling ‘deliciously scared’ and loving how the ‘bad guys’ always get their comeuppance in the most imaginative ways possible and this book sits in that format perfectly. In a few years time I want to be sitting in front of the tv with my kids on Boxing Day and watching this poem come to life.

Verdict: Giles Paley – Phillips is an author to watch and from the strength of this book alone, I’ll happily blindly buy other works of his, no questions asked!

Reviewed by Karen

Publisher: Maverick Arts Publishing
Publication Date: May 2011
Format: Paperback
Pages: 32
Genre: Children’s book
Age: Picture Books
Reviewer: Karen
Source: Received from Author
Challenge: British Book
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The Jelly That Wouldn’t Wobble

Angela Mitchell and Sarah Horne (illustrations)

It is Princess Lolly’s 89th birthday party and a glorious jelly is on the menu. However there is a problem: the jelly refuses to wobble!
“I won’t wobble, I won’t wobble and that’s my final word!” screamed the jelly …
This newly released children’s book has been read most nights in our house since we received it and it’s gone down a treat. I have to put on a special ‘queen’ type voice for Princess Lolly who even though she is 89 years old comes across a little spoilt and demanding! When her birthday jelly doesn’t wobble it causes an enormous problem for everyone who has come to her birthday party and they all try to come up a solution to make the jelly wobble.

This is a fun story that will definitely appeal to the pre-schoolers out there. The illustrations are well done with great bold colours that really appeal and make you want to pick it up. We even took it in to my son’s preschool to be read and it was much enjoyed by the all the children there.

As you might guess, things don’t end particularly well for the jelly, as after all it was the main event at the birthday party, and as a result of reading this, guess what’s on the menu this week for dessert!

Verdict: A bright and funny read, sure to appeal to all the pre-schoolers out there.

Reviewed by Lesley

Publisher: Maverick Arts Publishing Ltd
Published Date: May 2012
Format: Paperback
Pages: 32
Genre: Picture book
Age: Preschool
Reviewer: Lesley
Source: Received from publisher
Challenge: British Book Challenge
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