February 14, 2008

What children like to read, and toddlers like to listen to!:

Babies and Toddlers: Picture books:

Picture books are the stepping stones in the creation of new readers, and I am personally addicted to the artistic talents exhibited in these books; the artist’s creativity, and the versatility of picture books; the wonderful stories; a fascinating new world to be discovered and enjoyed! What toddlers like to listen to obviously depends on what parents, librarians, caretakers read to them, and the way in which these books are presented.

Judy Blume once said:

” I write popular books. It’s funny that if children like it, we think it can’t be good for them. I have a baby grandson. I want him to love books, and so I am going to get him books that he’ll giggle over, and then books that touch something inside him, and then let him explore and move in any direction, but let him read!”.
One needs to read simple stories to them; the whole idea is to introduce them to books with immense child appeal.

Margaret Mahy, H.C.Andersen winner of 2006, said: “ Children, like adults, also furnish their minds like their rooms, with words and pictures which simply appeal to them”.

In this category for example, children love touch-and-feel books, lift-the flaps, pop-ups; Where is the…? and any story where there is an element of suspense, eg. Run dog run….; or humour; or situations in which an animal or bird or mouse, for example almost form a subtext in there activities apart from the central story.

They are also very comfortable with realistic stories –photographs of children their age busy doing things they know in familiar surroundings like home, shopping, visiting, family and friends, books with babies as the main characters, eg. getting dressed, taking a bath, going to bed with favourite toys. Listening abilities differ greatly between children of the same age;one finds one child responding to questions and participating where another lacks behind. This is determined by many factors; even personality differences and emotional maturity.

The appearance of the books is very important to most children:

  • The cover of the book can make or break its readership!
  • The cover should be inviting, with interesting fonds used, lots of colour; an illustration that catches the eye; movement in the illus also helps; humour is always a plus; all these elements can contribute to the book being taken out by parents and children, or not. ( Some examples given…)
  • The FEEL of the books is very important: and the FORMAT: Books that are difficult to handle; or with paper of a poor quality is off-putting. Among some locally produced books we come across extremely unattractive books with ugly illus, poor paper is used, and the format is difficult to handle.Be assured that children do not touch these books! I’ve noticed that toddlers do like to handle small formats; but in fact even bigger formats are acceptable as a challenge-it is amazing how persistent small children can be when they want to look and feel and touch a book; they struggle, but persevere! However, if the small format belongs to a book of strong literary merit, such a title is actually more suitable for personal collections,and will get lost among other more popular material.

When I do stories, one almost have to hide the books you are going to read, because the curious once immediately rush forward to get hold of these., to look at the books for themselves.

Looking in more detail at the illustrations, both on the cover and inside the book:

Even in the Afrikaans picture book category, where the selection is much smaller than for books in English, we find that some books will circulate continuously, while others get little support. Why? They do judge the book by its cover,and the illustrations inside the book must draw them to explore the book further.. As illustrators you do know how important your work is to each and every book produced for children.

Apart from picture books, the obvious vehicle, there are the beginner readers where wonderful work is done by illustrators, and even in books for older childen, the J category, the illustrations can make a huge contribution.Even if it is only the book jacket which can pull the title through for a readership. What I do not like is when some illus are scattered throughout the text, actually with little impact or relevance and sometimes destroying the atmosphere created by the good story. If it does not work, leave it out! Today’s child is visually so stimulated by the media, computer games, visuals on cell phones, etc., that inevitably they will expect great visuals from their books too. Maybe this is a reason why comic strip books like Asterix and Tintin remain hot favourites.

Maybe one should mention the few basic principles applicable to a well illustrated book:

  • The illustrations must tell the story visually; as accurate and true to the text as possible; or preferably even add more dimensions and facets to the original text. Wendy Hartmann last Friday showed me her new three beginner readers with LAPA; simple stories, illustrated by Joan Rankin. Perfect examples of how the illus enriched the stories because of the illustrators insight into characters and their behaviour; and her sensitivity to what the author attempted to convey. It is most annoying when one starts to read a story, and the text describes the whole background in detail,so that one can visualize it clearly, but the illustrations on that page are inaccurate: the sky is for example supposed to be a deep blue, the illustrations show a orange sky!
  • The Illus must give expression to the emotions of the characters in a convincing manner. Must have child-appeal: One thinks here of the continuous popularity of a character like the dog Spot; or Preller’s Babalela. Or many other endearing cuddly, non-threathening round- bodied or friendly faced characters, like Noddy, Maisy, Barney, Wibbly pig, Pookie the rabbit, Angelina, Babar the elephant and many more.
  • For very small children the illustrations must not be too busy, or cluttered or zany; and not too bizarre. As they get older, however, they love the minute details, the text in different fonts; the illus running across pages; combinations of different types of illus. eg. The books by the brilliant Lauren Child, like her book I am too absolutely small for school.
  • Illustrations must be reassuring and comforting for babies and toddlers. This is not the place for really scary stuff.
Although the age of the child plays a role here 4 year olds are quite comfortable already with more scary and way-out text and illus, and they will point out details in illus that you or I might have missed.

Because there is such a vast selection of English picture books on the market on almost every conceivable topic, I think it is vitally important that prospective writers look at the books that are available, before you attempt yet another bear; or dog ; or bedtime story. Except if you are convinced that your book is original, brings something fresh or different, and will make a significant contribution! Then go ahead by all means. The problem is that when , for example the Selectors at CCPL choose, that book has to compete with all the other titles on the market. And we still are very lenient when it comes to South African produced books, as we do want to support our local production.But so often we see yet another bear/duck/ story , with much better books already available covering that theme.

On the topic of SA produced picture books, there is an excellent paper by F.A. Fairer-Wessels and J.W. Wessels entitled: ‘A critical discussion of the art styles used by selected illustrators of SA. Children’s books since the 1950’s.”

I would like to read some comments and conclusions they arrived at:

“Art techniques used in our books have similarities to the techniques employed by illustrators worldwide, for example the use of mixed media, collage, dry brush and quilting, with mediums such as watercolour, oil, pen, pencil crayon, lead pencil, pastel, and oil are used. Styles most commonly found in S.A. Children’s books are Realism, Cartooning, and to a lesser degree, the Naïve style, which portrays reality in a primitive fashion without perspective. Other styles used are those of folk art; which portrays typical traditions, symbols and cultural forms using line and colour, such as the San rock art, as portrayed in Niki Daly’s The dancer. The themes used are universal themes such as love and fear in family relationships, grandmothers and fathers; the search for love and acceptance; the discovery of an own identity; the realisation of race-including the contrast between rural and urban life; social issues such as the less privileged. Themes making books uniquely South African are themes such as Our unique multicultural population Our uniques social problems that relate to multiculturalism Africa’s wild animals The diversity of geographic areas, such as the Kalahari,the Bushveld Indigenous folk tales- stories ranging from myth to legend, to stories about current events and daily life. Very often the illustrations in these books are simplistically realistic, requiring a basic level of visual literacy.”
Interesting enough, and this applies to children worldwide today, indigenous folktales have few readers; often only when reading these materials are required by schools. A good storyteller, however, will be able to “sell” these stories to children.One must remember that there really is a book suitable for every reader; the problem is to bring the two together. What do we learn form this? Yes, we do produce quality books on par with international standards; yes, we do have unique things to offer to readers from different backgrounds; but I conclude that we still have to avoid producing books inferior in theme, and general appearance. There are still many of these.

Afrikaans picture books that have been the most popular are for example the following titles; although this is not a comprehensive list:

(Van hierdie boeke is myns insiens uiters onaantreklik, en ‘mass market stuff”, maar die kinders is mal oor hulle)

  • Preller, Martie Babalela
  • Hans Christian Andersen sprokies soos die Lelike eendjie, in Afrikaans vertaal deur Philip de Vos
  • Die nuwe Droombosreeks, eg Reenboogfeetjie se ongeluk(Ugh!)
  • Faulkner,Keith Die kameelperd wat kon koe-ke-le-koe
  • McNaughton, Colin Boe!
  • Faulkner, Keith Die bang beertjie
  • Andreae, Giles Kameelperde kan nie dans nie
  • Biro, Val Die drie rammetjies rof
  • Murphy, Jill Net vyf minute vrede
  • Rankin, Joan Mevrou Potjierol en die klein katjie
  • Lillegard, Dee In my kartondoos
  • Conboy, Fiona Hol muis hol
  • Faulkner, Keith Die platbekpadda
  • Trivizas, Eugene Die drie klein wolfies en die nare vet vark
  • Hill, Eric Otto se pretjaar
  • Paul Korky Hessie en holderstebolder
  • Miesiemuis (Fantasi)
  • Root, Phyllis Mevrou Stoffer se varkie
  • King-Smith, Dick Die fluitende varkie
  • Robertson, Julia Die Goorgomgaai
  • Grobler, Piet Net een slukkie padda
  • Joris, Daniel Die avonture van Arthur, eg. Arthur word ‘n padda
  • Weninger, Brigitte Dit was ek, Mamma! Met die karakter Miko (Fantasi)
Omdat die verskeidenhheid nie so groot is soos by Engelse titels nie, word die meeste boeke hier wel uitgeneem, maar ma’s kla dat hulle al al die boeke ken en oor-en-oor uitgeneem het!

Dit s opmerklik dat die amper “comic” styl van illustrasies uiters gewild is. Belangrik is dit ook dat daar ‘n sentrale “endearing” karaktertjie is wat die kinders lief voor word, soos Otto, Arthur, die Goorgomgaai; Miesiemuis, Jasper. Miko. In English characters like Maisy the mouse, Kipper, Spot, Angelina, Lettice, Berenstain bears, Babar the elephant, Gumdrop, Postman Pat; Barney the dinosaur and Telly Tubbies.

Popular English picture books:

I have a huge collection of picture books as a special storytime collection for my Born to read programme. Almost every title on the market suitable for this age group is purchased and used exclusively for storytime. Some examples are the following:

  • Fox, Christyan Cat and mouse – the hole story
  • Alborough, Jez Duck’s key- where can it be?
  • Inkpen, Mick Wibbly pig
  • Campbell, Rod I’m hungry!
  • Campbell, Rod Dear Zoo
  • Cousins, Lucy Ha—ha Maisy - the Maisy books
  • Sharratt, Nick A cheese and tomato spider
  • McNaughton, Colin Shh! (Don’t tell Mister Wolf)
  • Roddie, Shen Hatch, egg, hatch
  • Fowler, Richard Mr Little’s noisy truck
  • Holabird, Kathrine Angelina Ballerina
  • Cole, Babette Dr. Dog , in fact all her books are hilarious
  • Hest, Amy In the rain with Baby Duck
  • Stanley, Mandy Lettice the dancing rabbit
  • Scarry, Richard All his books
  • Dahl, R The enormous crocodile
  • Gretz, Susanna Riley and Rose in the picture.
  • Inkpen, Mick Kipper’s birthday
  • Ezra, Mark The frightened little owl
  • Waddell, Martin Owl babies.
  • Pfister, Marcus The rainbow fish
  • Inkpen, Mick Kipper’s beach ball- all the Kipper books.
  • Carle, Eric The badtempered ladybird
  • Shannon, David No, David!
  • Barber, Shirley Spellbound: a fairytale romance
  • Thomas the tank engine

If one looks at popular themes, depending also on the age of the child, it would be mostly the following:

Humour is always big, eg, Thomson, Pat Drat that fat cat!

A brilliant new author is Child, Lauren with books like I am too absolutely small for school.

Animals, eg bears,( Gliori, Debi Mr Bear to the rescue;) rabbits, cats and dogs, Wild animals


Rhyming texts

Fantasy-fairies, dinosaurs

Family, home, grandparents

Things that go: trucks, cars, planes.

Pre-schoolers: 4-6 years of age:

Most picture books are still suitable for this age group; especially as picture books can be used on different levels for different ages, and are extremely versatilein their application. A simple story can be dollied up with more information while you are reading or telling the story. Teachers here always need books on a specific theme, eg. Vegetables, Seasons; Celebrations; Me and my world; etc. Therefore it is important that writers and illustrators look at what is available on the market, and try and fill the gaps so to speak by creating books for specific needs like these.

Beginner readers:

Readers for children beginning to read by themselves, are of a high quality and very diverse in themes, illustrations, appearance. I am regularly impressedby the quality of stories and illustrations in this category. Internationally produces series have inviting titles like Green bananas; Step into reading; Spiral readers; Bangers and Mash; Brand new readers; Leapfrog; Road to reading; I can read; Funny bones; Reading together, and many more.Berenstain bears, and others. Dr. Seuss The books are a delight: stories are good and entertaining, and often much better than those in picture books.; The brandname is easily identified by eg. A green banana; pencil stripes; a little frog; a tiny hop-scotch drawing; a small colourful hippopotamus; to name a few. In Afrikaans we have the Ster-stories; Rimpelstories; Oxford storieboom; Storiestraat en Kom ons lees. Kinders lees hierdie boekies met oorgawe, en tans een van die mees gewilde seksies in die biblioteek. What one must remember is that when children read in a second language, small print and too thick books are very off-putting. We have too few books in Afrikaans with nice easily readible print.

8-11 years of age:

As the children get older, a big difference start to show between the reading preferences of boys and girls, and also between Afrikaans and English speaking children, and Xhosa speaking children.

Boys in general show an interest in stories with more facts added to the usual story: books on Dinosaurs; Asterix and Tintin; Puzzle adventures; Scary stories., Where’s Wally ; Cartoons and Joke books. The Japanese Manga comic books are popular, with the Kung Fu boy, Iron fist Chinmi. Terry Pratchett with his graphic novels like the Discworld series, are hugely popular. 37 titles are already published, and he is admired for using myth, folklore and fairy tales for satirical parallels with current cultural, technological and scientific issues. The little girls love stories about fairies; ponies; ballet, unicorns From about 9 years of age they start reading My secret Unicorn and Captain Underpants; Rainbow Magic and Stardust series.. They also love May, Kate and Ashley; Sleepover club; in fact any books loking like girlie stuff in appearance and format.

Series/ Brand names:

I cannot over-emphasize the importance children attach to Series. The Dorling Kindersley readers which include facts with story; the Usborne farmyard tales; the Green Bananas; Beetle and Friends; Young hippo magic; Horrid Henry; Princess Posy; Mermaid Rock; TItchy witch; Little Dolphin; Orchard crunchies; to name a few. New on the market is Reenboogdrome series by LAPA, and the Lili series. Oxfors Storieboom se stamstories vir ouer kinders is ook baie gewild.

Older children: 11-14 years of age:

By now they have very specific tastes; and anything goes, determined by the personalities and likes of the specific child. We find that this group is definitely reading more English than Afrikaans. Popular English books include the following: Fantasy off course!: Artemis Fowl;Harry Potter; Chronicles of Narnia Adventure stories, eg. Survive series; Willard Price; Chris Ryan Scary stories, eg. Christopher Pike’s Spookville; Bonechillers; Darren Shan; The Nightmare room Realism, eg. Authors like Jacqueline Wilson.; Mates,dates series by Cathy Hopkins; Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot Interestingly , the titles of books often get them to read the books. Titles like : Do I look like I care?; Not a proper mum; Born to be bad; Bad boys; Fat kid rules the world; etc.These titles “speak” to them; the books sound cool, and enviting.: Humour : Morris Gleitzman; Roald Dahl Series once again have great appeal and many devoted followers: series like Animorphs; Choose your own adventure; Lemony Snicket’s Series of unfortunate events; the South African produced Siyagruva series; Remnants; old favourites like Hardy boys, Enid Blyton; Nancy Drew.

Afrikaans books in the different categories:

Ek verwys u na ons IBBY SA website waar ek al die nuwe Afriaanse boeke wat aan my voorgelë word, kortliks bespreek In hierdie verband moet ek së dat daar ‘n groot verbetering in die voorkoms en temas te bespeur is,en die boeke is deurgaans baie meer toeganklik vir kinders. Dit is tog te jammer dat by ouer titels goeie verhale nie meer gelees word nie, juis omdat die omslae so vaal en verbeeldingloos is. ‘n Mens kan die jongmense eenvoudig nie kwalik neem nie! Hulle word vandag visueel so gestimuleer, dat boeke geweldig moet kompiteer om hul aandag te kry. Oor die verskillende kategoriee die volgende: Ek het reeds prenteboeke bespreek, Reekse bly maar gewild. Vir die 9-11 jariges is daar byvoorbeeld Reenboogdrome uitgegee deur LAPA; Stamstories; Lili die wensfeetjie reeks in sagte pienk en liggeel/ liggroen omslae; Liewe Heksie; Gedaantes en Geraamtes; Jasper In der waarheid word die ou gunsteling reekse nog gelees, soos Saartjie, Trompie; Swart Kat; Grille en Goeters; Reenboogrant maats en Tieners om maar ‘n paar te noem. Gelukkig het hierdie reekse nou verskyn met pragtige nuwe omslae en hersiene tekste. Van die skrywers wat gewild is , is Fanie Viljoen , Jaco Jacobs, Carina-D Hugo met haar Thomas@. .net; Gedaantes en Geraamtes.; en Bloemhof se Rillers- Omnibus. Vir dogters, op ‘n ligte noot, is daar boeke soos die twee titles van Tania Brink- Liefde laat jou Rice rispies anders proe, en Ouens is nie Pizzas nie; en ‘n ouer reeks Eerste liefde en die Reenboogrant-reeks.;maar ongelukkig verskyn daar min leesbare stories op ‘n ligte trant, en is issues nog maar altyd ‘n sterk tema. Ongelukkig nie so gewild by kinders nie! Van die nuutste boeke war gepubliseer is, is daar ‘n paar belowende titels, bv. Jaco Jacobs se Monstergrappe; en sy Suurlemoen- ‘n boek vir tieners;ons huidige IBBY Honour boek vir Afrikaans. Ook; Sms’e, skurke en spinnekoppe’;van Nerine Ahlers en Alet Steenkamp; ook Ruik jy die filmster van Naomi Meyer(Tafelberg); en Tafelberg publiseer ‘n lekker fantasie verhaal van Fanie Viljoen, Klitskronkel en die vlammende swaard. H&R kom met Kobus Maree se Jakkalsvoël; en Terugkeer van Rudi Venter. Martie Preller het drie nuwe titels by LAPA waar die held van die stories die kind is; Jy en Hercules; Jy en die Dinosourus; en Jy en Toetenkat. Die aanbiedings is so reg in die smaak van vandag se kind; karikatuur-agtige karakters; aksievol; deelnemend. Perdestories is uiters gewild; in Engels is daar ‘n paar uitstekende reekse; en daarom verblydend dat LAPA die Stalmaats-reeks uitgegee het. Human & Rousseau het ‘n paar lekker boekies vir peuters gepubliseer, soos Ons nuwe baba, en Ons gaan na die dokter; Otto se groot woordeboek; Ben en Madeliefie se Tekenboek, en hulle Groottes en vorms; en die vermaaklike Bangkat en Boe deur Michael Bond. Waak tog , veral by ouer kinders, teen enkel titels , veral wanneer die skrywer nog nie bekend is nie, want so ‘n boek kan maklik in die “woodwork” verdwyn.; Kinders soek altyd na die volgende boek wat ‘n vorige lekker leesbare stojrie opvolg.

Opsommend kan ek kortliks oor Suid-Afrikaanse kinderboeke die volgende së:

  • Daar is ‘n groot verbetering in die gehalte, algemene versorging, verskeidenheid, en geskikte temas.
  • Hoewel heeltwat nuwe boeke jaarliks gepubliseer word, is daar egter nog steeds te min boeke in die verskillende kategoriee; en nog te min kinder-vriendelike boeke wat handel oor temas met ‘n ligte aanslag.
  • Ons is dankbaar vir elke nie-fiksie onderwerp waaroor daar ‘n boek in Afrikaans verskyn; mense vra ons gedurig hoekom daar nie inligting in Afrikaans oor die onderwerp is nie. Ek is verheug oor LAPA se nuwe boek, ‘n Nie-fiksietitel : Wat as my hond; ook Jaco Jacobs se Monster grappe en sy Wurms met tamatiesous en ander lawwe rympies.

In conclusion then:

Children do love books, and therefore it is important that they are introduced to books from an early age. Beginner readers should also be of a high quality in content and general appearance. If we win them over for books at an early age, a reading youth is created, and the rest will come much easier.

Lona Gericke, Children’s librarian, Bellville 29 October, 2007.


Bloemhof Francois Die dae toe ek Elvis was (Tafelberg, 2000)

C.J. se maat word vermoor en gemolesteer en hy word amper self ‘n slagoffer voordat die moordenaar ontmasker word. ‘n Mengsel van spanning en romanse. Skrywer ken trendy jong volwassenes.
Brink, Tania Liefde laat jou Rice Krispies anders proe (Lapa, 2002)
A genuine true to life story about teenagers who fall in love; and that changes their perception of the world.
Conradie, Anne-Marie e-topia (H&R, 2004)
A current novel which shows how young people can fall in the grasp of drug addiction; and how it is virtually impossible to escape again. A strong statement against drug abuse, telling young people what the dangers are. Highly recommended.
Conradie, Anne-Marie Tippex dit uit (H&R, 2001)
A group of teenagers get into trouble after an illegal abortion was performed on one of them. The girl was raped. Broken lives must be mended.
De Villiers, Leon Die Pro (Tafelberg, 1997).
To make Biology more interesting, Tiaan begins a diary, also in an attempt to come to terms with the death of his best friend. Very moving.
De Villiers, Leon Aliens en engele (Tafelberg, 1996)
Winner Sanlam prize. Pieter is a boy of 11 who finds it difficult to come to terms with the reality of his world; so he escapes into a fantasy world.
Greyling, Franci Die meisie van Melrosehuis (H&R, 1995)
A bomb explodes at Melrose house, and Sonja is there first. Her mother must restore the building, and she makes a mysterious encounter with a girl from the past.
Hamersma, Elsa Die teken van Crux (Tafelberg, 1998)
Sanlam prize 1998. Mia wins an essay-writing competition, and is invited for a week to Washington. Reality gets intertwined with fantasy, as she carries the “sign”, and she is taken to outer space to help the creatures from outer space. Debut story. Exciting, believable, tense.
Hough, Barrie & Meiring, Lizz Breek (Tafelberg, 2002)
A drama which was performed successfully at the KKNK 2001. Tom and Gideon are student friends, and they move in together in a cottage. Tom falls in love with Justine. All 3 harbour family secrets in their lives.
Hough, Barrie Droomwa (Tafelberg, 1990)
A boy in Grade 7 looses his father, and he has to grow up and come to terms with the past.
Leroux-Van der Boon, Marzanne Luc en Libertine (Tafelberg, 1998)
Two young people from different backgrounds meet at the Waldorf school in Constantia, and fall in love. For teens. Elizabeth’s parents are separating, and her own relationship with Kevin is on shaky ground. First experience with sex. She is scared that she is pregnant.
Maree, Kobus Proefwedstryd vir Wikus (H&R, 1993)
A teen story. Story about sexual behaviour and alcohol abuse. Wikus is everybody’s hero as captain of the first rugby team and a prefect. But things get out of hand when his girlfriend tells him she is expecting a baby.
Parker, Elize Moenie vir ma se nie (Lux Verbi 2001)
Marcelle writes about her life in a diary. She wants to be like other teenagers, but belongs to the Funky for Jesus youth club, and helps her brother who is studying theology to take care of AIDS orphans. A story with a Christian slant.
Philips, Fransi ‘n Baie lang brief aan Rolf (HAUM, 1993)
16 year old Klara must adapt to a new school, after her father committed suicide. She is a dreamer who meets Rolf, a boy who plays the piano beautifully. Two talented and sensitive teenagers who help one another to discover the meaning in life.
Preller, Martie In die tyd van die Esop (Tafelberg, 1996)
A futuristic story in which 4 young people must pass difficult tests to discover who will be the one honoured to wear the red cloak. Exciting story about the struggle between good and evil.
Schuler, Rena Die somervakansie wat te lank was (Tafelberg, 2000)
Willem is a typical grade 11 boy who is fond of soccer and dance. But he has a deformed left hand, and he has to learn to accept this deformity. Nellie’s accident brings about a change for the better in him. Engrossing and striking story. Winner silver medal Sanlam prize.
Van der Walt, Willem Ragtime en rocks (Tafelberg, 2003)
With sharp observation the author captures a dramatic period in the lives of teenagers going to school, who are in love, hate and hope against a background of drugs and gangster-action on the Cape Flats.
Van der Vyver, Marita Die ongelooflike avonture van Hanna Hoekom (Tafelberg, 2002)
An entertaining story about a strange family and the adventures they have. These are eccentric characters; and the author writes so well that the reader is taken in . Hanna tells their story. She considers herself to be the boring person who just wants to write, and the character in her story is her alter-ego- The fabulous Fabienne.
Van Rooyen, Marietjie Drie maande in Mei (Tafelberg, 1997)
Elet is enthusiastic about her sport , also because of problems at home. Then she goes to a party with Eddie, and an accident happens. How will she be able to continue with her life?
Von Meck, Anoeschka Vaselinetjie (Tafelberg, 2004)
Helena Bosman lives in a home for children; and the writer based her story on her real experiences in such a home as one of the caretakers. Helena was placed in the home after living with her grandparents. She introduces us to a world few people are familiar with; and many social issues are revealed: racism, violence, drugs, prostitution; suicide…. For all ages. An excellent book.
Weideman, George Dana se jaar duisend (Tafelberg, 1998)
At the end of the first millennium the story takes place in Scandinavia where a small colony thru internal betrayal is wiped out, except for Dana, the daughter of the Viking chief, and 2 slaves. They begin a long journey across the ice fields of Sweden and Northern Europe, and when her cousin joins them, they establish the Company of Entertainers to survive. Very interesting story and the historical background makes it even more exciting. They learn about relationships in the process, and with new hope, knowledge and faith they enter the new millennium. A good adventure story which keeps your attention to the end.


    • Aesop
    • Alcott, Louisa May
    Little women
    • Arabian nights
    • Atwater, Richard&Florence
    Mr. Popper’s Penguins
    • Bagnold, Enid
    National Velvet
    • Barrie, J M
    Peter Pan
    • Baum, L Frank
    Wonderful Wizard of Oz
    • Blackmore, R D
    Lorna Doone
    • Bond, Michael
    A bear called Paddington
    • Boston, L M
    Children of Green Knowe
    • Burnett, Frances Hodgson
    The secret garden
    • Carroll, Lewis
    Alice’s adventures in wonderland
    • Collodi, Carlo
    • Crane, Stephen
    Red badge of courage
    • De Jong, Meindert
    Wheel on the school
    • Defoe, Daniel
    Robinson Crusoe
    • Dickens, Charles
    Christmas carol
    • Dodge, Mary Mapes
    Hans brinker, or the Silver skates
    • Dumas, Alexander
    Man in the iron mask
    • Frank, Anne
    Diary of a young girl
    • Gallico, Paul
    Snow goose
    • Garnett, Eve
    Family from One End Street
    • Gipson, Fred
    Old Yeller
    • Grahame, Kenneth
    Wind in the willows
    • Green, Roger Lancelyn
    King Arthur and his knights of the round table
    • Haggard, H.Rider
    King Solomon’s mines
    • Irving, Washington
    Legend of Sleepy Hollow
    • Kingsley, Charles
    Water babies
    • Kipling, Rudyard
    Jungle books
    • Knight, Eric
    Lassie come home
    • Lamb, Charles&Mary
    Tales from Shakespeare
    • Lewis, CS
    Chronicles of Narnia
    • Lindgren, Astrid
    Pippi Longstocking
    • Lofting, Hugh
    Doctor Dolittle
    • London, Jack
    Call of the wild
    • Magorian, Michelle
    Goodnight mister Tom
    • Milne, A A
    • Montgomery, L M
    Anne of Green Gables
    • Nesbit, E
    Railway children
    • Norton, Mary
    The Borrowers
    • O’Dell, Scott
    Island of blue dolphins
    • O’Hara, Mary
    My friend Flicka
    • Orczy, Baroness
    Scarlet pimpernel
    • Pearce, Philippa
    Tom’s midnight garden
    • Porter, Eleanor H
    • Potter, Beatrix
    Tale of Peter Rabbit
    • Saint-Exupery, Antoine de
    Little Prince
    • Selden, George
    Cricket in Times Square
    • Sewell, Anna
    Black beauty
    • Shelley, Mary
    • Smith, Dodie
    Hundred and one Damatians
    • Spyri, Johanna
    • Stevenson, R L
    Treasure island
    • Stoker, Bram
    • Swift, Jonathan
    Gulliver’s travels
    • Tolkien, J R R
    The Hobbit
    • Travers, P L
    Mary Poppins
    • Twain, Mark
    Adventures of Tom Sawyer
    • Verne, Jules
    Around the world in 80 days
    • Verne, Jules
    Twenty thousand leagues under the sea
    • Wells, H G
    Invisible man
    • White, E B
    Charlotte’s web
    • White, T H
    Sword in the stone
    • Wilde, Oscar
    Happy Prince
    • Wilder, Laura Ingalls
    Little House on the Prarie
    • Williams, Margery
    Velveteen rabbit
    • Wyss, Johann
    Swiss family Robinson

Boekresensies Januarie 2008:

Vir die kleintjies:

Jacobs, Jaco Danie Dreyer se dinosouruseier en ander alfabetpret (LAPA, 2007) Geillustreer deur Maja Sereda

Wat ‘n prettige en vermaaklike alfabetboek! Nie net word die letter van die alfabet herhaal in die rympie vir die spesifieke letter nie; maar die kinder vriendelike illustrasies laat elke bladsy van die boek ‘n genotvolle belewenis word! Met die letter M byvoorbeeld, lees ons van Mandy Mbeki wat ure lank aan haar ma se motordeur vassit oor die massiewe magneet in haar skooltas. Baie mooi aanbieding.
Jonger lesers: Hartmann, Wendy Theo die biblioteekkat; Theo en die sirkus; en Theo en die kattedief (LAPA, 2007), met wonderlike illustrasies deur die bekende Joan Rankin.
Hierdie drie boekies vir 7-9jariges is van die mooiste boekies in die genre wat ek lanklaas gesien het. Behalwe dat die eenvoudige verhaaltjies lekker lees; is hierdie voortreflike voorbeelde van hoe n illustreerder ‘n verhaal kan verryk met ‘n fyn aanvoeling van elke gebeurtenis wat in humpristiese, beweeglike illus onverbetelik uitgebeeld word. Hoogs aanbeveel. HIerdie is klein juweeltjies en kwaliteit.
Vir 9-11 jariges: Jacobs, Jaco se Voelers (LAPA, 2007) in die Grille en Goeters reeks:
Dok Brummer se laboratorium kan dalk die verkeerde plek wees vir Marius en sy virend Denzil om in te wrk vir ekstra sakgeld- hy mag nou wel mal wees oor allerhande soort insekte en goggas; maar Dok hou van eksperimente , en sy Formule x kan snaakse goed met ‘n mens laat gebeur….! Lekker-lees storie, met genoeg aksie en opwinding vir die jong lesers, veral seuns.
Engelbrecht, Nelia Die seun met die blou hare (LAPA, 2007)
Om met die seun Luna vriende te wees is net een groot avontuur. Hy is anders; van sy blou hare tot sy troeteldier Sleep, ‘n slang, is Luna nog vol interessante plannetjies ook- Soos om Sleepkoekies te bak vir ekstra sakgeld. Maar wanneer hy geel tower poeier in die sleepkoekies gooi in plaas van regte bakpoeier , begin snaakse goed met die ander kinders gebeur….. Ligte leesvermaak; ook snaaks en onderhoudend geskryf.
Heruitgawe van Reeboog rant Maats 11 : Smit, J c Ans se geheim (LAPA 2007) Eerste uitgawe 2000.
Hierdie gewilde reeks het nou pragtige pastel-kleurige omslae , so reg in fyn dogters se smaak! Die twee reekse is baie gewild onder 10-12 jariges, en kinders sal hou van die boeke se nuwe voorkoms.
Vir Tieners:
  • Van Niekerk, Louse Doodloopstrate en Paaie van die hart ( Reenboogrant Tieners 11 en 12 ) Doodloopstrate word heruitgegee,Paaie van die hart is nuut in hierdie gewilde reeks.
  • Diedericks-Hugo, Carina Thomas@ aksie.net (LAPA, 2007) Hierdie is die sesde avontuur-belaaide titel in ‘n gewilde reeks jeugboeke.
Die skrywer het hier n goeie resep vir ‘n wenner: ‘n gewilde sepie,Die Malans van Marthaheim waarin Thomas ‘n rol kry; ‘n sexy blondekop medespeler; ‘n skurkagtige Seth; ‘n TV-ateljee wat nie verniet die naam Gruwelgrot kry nie; ‘n geheimsinnige man in ‘n jas wat daar rondsluip; dreigemente aan Thomas; gemeng met Thomas se rugby ambisies….. baie intrige en aksie vir al Thomas se jojale lersers!Carina Diedericks-Hugo praat die taal van hierdie jongmense; en hulle avontuur word met groot afwagting deur die leser gedeel. Lekker leesstof.
  • Ahlers, Nerine en Steenkamp, Alet Sepiesterre, sokkies en skobbejakke(LAPA, 2007)
Hierdie is ‘n tipiese geslaagde verhaal vir meisies: 4 Vriendinne in aangrensende kamers in die koshuis wat met groot afwagting uitsien na die Revue waaraan hulle almal wil deelneem; ‘n aaklige Juffrou van wie hulle niks hou nie en wat baie suspisieus optree; ‘n optel katjie Nebukadneser wat hulle probeer wegsteek in die kamer; eskepades in die Franse klas; dit alles lei tot ‘n klimaks met diewe, ‘n brand en Mia wat kry wat sy werklik verdien…. Ek het die verhaal nogal geniet; en wil juis nie die storie vertel nie! Genoeg om te se meisies gaan lekker lees.

Children’s book reviews, December 2007:

Engelbrecht, Nelia Die seun met die blou hare( LAPA, 2007)

Vir jonger lesers, so tussen 7-10 jaar, verskyn hierdie onderhoudende verhaal oor ‘n seun met blou hare, Luna, en sy goeie vriend. Saam ondervind hulle die lekkerste dinge; want Luna stuit vir niemand nie, en almal is veral versigtig vir sy luislang troeteldier. Die skool bied ‘n fietsresies aan, en Luna besluit hulle moet deelneem. Op eie stoom sou hulle verloor, maar Luna het ‘n troefkaart in die vorm van sy luislang wat pandimonium skep onder die deelnemers; sodat hulle twee gemaklik kan wen. Maar die eintlike pret begin as hulle toorkoekies bak wat al die kinders laat versteen, en hulle word ook lig soos veertjies. ‘n Teenmiddel moet dringend uitgevidn word. Maar dan loop die twee hulle vas in twee rowers; en al genade is om weer die toorkoekies se hulp in te roep. Hulle ontdek die skat van die rowers, en nou sien hulle uit na ‘n vogende fietswedren! Ligte ntspanningsleesstof. Behoort gewild te wees. Gemaklike skryfstyl; heeltemaal vermaaklik.
In die Grllle en Goeters-reeks verskyn die boek, Voelers, deur Jaco Jacobs . (LAPA, 2007)
Marius en sy vriend Denzil help Dok met ‘n eksperiment waarvoor hy krieke nodig het. Maar die twee se nuuskierigheid veroorsaak dat hulle op ‘n geheime eksperiment van die Dokter afkom; en wanneer van die vloeistof op Marius val, begin hy geleidelik al meer in ‘n insek verander! Dok maak die teenmiddel, maar gaan hy dit vir Marius gee? En as hy dit self sou inkry?! Lekker leesbare kort verhaal wat jong lesers se aandag sal hou; en net kort geoeg om die trae lesertjies deur te trek.
Diedericks-hugo, Carina Thomas@ aksie.net (LAPA, 2007)
Hierdie uiters gewilde reeks word aangevul met die welkome nuwe Thomas verhaal!

Boekresensies Oktober 2007:


Evans, Jim Wat as my hond…? (LAPA, 2007) Afrikaans deur Jaco Jacobs

Wat ‘n oulike boek wat kundige antwoorde gee op al daardie vjierpotige probleme! Daar is niks soortgelyks in Afrikaans vir kinders nie; en selfs volwassenes sal die boek uiters nuttig kan gebruik. Die inhoudsopgawe is verdeel in: Deel 1: Verstaan en vorm jou hond se gedrag; Deel 2: Glipsies en probleme in en om die huis; en Deel 3: Voorkoming en behandeling van siektes; Deel 4: Die ouer hond-maak jou hond se goue jare goeie jare. Die outeur is ‘n internasionaal gerespekteerde veearts; en ‘n skrywer en dosent op die gebied van veeartsenykunde en dieresorg.. Hierdie is ‘n besonder leser-vriendelike publikasie; prettige illustrasies help om die trant lig en toeganklik te hou; ook foto’s. Die boek is keurig versorg; die indeling maklik leesbaar en die indeks is deeglik versorg. Hoogs aanbeveel vir biblioteek- en tuisversamelings.
Vir peuters en kleuters:

Human en Rousseau het ‘n paar prettige en kleurvolle boekies vir babas uitgegee. Small world Creations : Hasie-rugsakkie/Bunny back pack (H&R, 2007) 3-8 jariges.

Die oulikste Hasie-rugsakkie met drie kartonboekies binne-in die rugsakkie. Kartonboekies met die stories van Sarel die hondjie; Daantjie die kat en Hilda die Hasie ; ewe kleurvol in geel , groen en pienk omslae.Die teks rym en die inhoud is net min genoeg om die kleintjies te amuseer en lief vir boeke te maak. Die ideale geskenk vir kleinkinders en jou eie kind. Hoogs aanbeveel.
Ons nuwe baba , deur Dawn Sirett ( H&R, 2007) en Ons gaan na die dokter, deur Dawn Sirett ( H&R, 2007)
Hierdie twee kartonboekies is uiters handig om ouers te help om hulle kinders deur ‘n nuwe ervaring te lei. In biblioteke is daar gedurig navrae vir sulke boeke, en dit sal die voorraad goed aanvul. Ek hou daarvan dat foto’s van kinders gebruik word; wat die hele aanbieding meer realisties maak. Die 30 prenteplakkers is handig om mee te speel; veral as dit ook ‘n positiewe boodskappie dra, soos : Ek vat saggies aan die baba; Ek deel my speelgoed; Ek is ‘n goeie boetie/sussie! Ouers sal maar moet voorlees. Baie aantreklike stewige boekies.
2 Titels in die Skoonveë leer en speel reeks:

Ben en Madeliefie se Groottes en Vorms, en Ben en Madeliefie se tekenboek. ( H&R, 2007)

Hierdie boeke sal kleintjies heerlik vermaak terwyl hulle leer teken leer hulle terselfdertyd die verskillende vorms ken , asook om ‘n lugballon, skoenlapper, hond, kat, trein, pop, appel, roomys blom, by hen , kuiken, vis en stervis te leer teken deur eers die kolletjies te verbind, dan die voorwerp self te teken, gevolg deir ‘n hele prentjie te skep. ‘n Pen kom saam met die boek, en die bladsye kan skoongeveê word sodat dit kind dit weer en weer kan gebruik. Nie biblioteekmateriaal nie, maar defnitief vir die kind se tuisgebruik. Pragtig kleurvol en groot pret.


Jeugboek Jakkalsvoël, deur Kobus Maree ( H&R, 2007)

In 1993 verskyn die skrywer se eerste jeugverhaal, Proefwedstryd vir Wikus, en nou in2007, 14 jaar later, ‘n tweede jeugverhaal, Jakkalsvoël. In 1993 was ek besonder beindruk met Proefwedstryd, op daardie stadium een van die min boeke waar ‘n skrywer daarin geslaag het om in die sige en ervaringswêreld van jeugdiges met oortuiging te klim. Die titel van hierdie verhaal het sterk simboliese trefkrag: ‘n Jakkalsvoël het die wonderlike vermoë om tydelike terugslae te oorkom; ‘n positiewe en parate wese. Dit word die uitdaging waarvoor die hoofkarakter Jacques te staan kom: kan hy, met die sielkundige se hulp sy persoonlike leed en beproewinge oorkom? Die verhaal ontvou geleidelik soos hy die legkaart van sy lewe stukkie vir stukkie voltooi; en eers aan die einde van die verhaal leer ons wat werklik gebeur het daardie dag toe hy en sy ma in hul motor deur rowers aangeval is. Die leser leer n sensitiewe onsekere seun ken , met n diep liefde vir sy ma; ‘n fyn waarnemer van die natuur; lief vir sy meisie; ‘n getroue vriend van die sorgelose De Waal; ‘n seun met ouers wat Jacques net kan bewonder vir hul standvastigheid. Sy eie geestelike stryd wat soms in drome uitgeworstel word, moet eers tot die uiterste beproef word , en sy lewe heeltemaal buite beheer raak, voordat hy tot volkome self-insig en volwassenheid groei. Hierdie is ‘n dapper poging van die skrywer om jeugdiges deur die karakter van Jacques en sy vriende aan te spreek en positief te probeer inspireer om soos die Jakkalsvoël tydelike terugslae te oorkom. Vanselfsprekend is die aanslag ernstig en intens, en hierdie is sekerlik nie die tipe verhaal wat jong lesers wat net op soek is na ligte vermaak in boeke, sal lees nie; maar die boek is waardevol as ‘n hulpmiddel tot selfondersoek en rypwording. Vir 11-14jariges. Word aanbeveel vir die ernstige jong leser. Ons almal ken al die gevoelens van onsekerheid en die strydende emosies wat saam met die grootword-proses gaan, en die skrywer het ‘n goeie aanvoeling vir jongmense., en skryf onderhoudend en gemaklik. Perfek is die boek sekerlik nie; ek het die natuurbeskrywings hinderlik gevind; bv. “kabbelende fonteintjies”; hier-en daar amper te stroperig soet. Dan is ek is nou maar eenmaal nie lief vir taalvermenging nie!- soos Cherize wat”adamant “is.
Lona Gericke

Boekresensies Augustus 2007:

Preller, Martie Jy en Toetenkat ; Jy en Hercules; Jy en die Dinosourus ( LAPA, 2007) Illustrasies deur Alistair Ackermann.

Hierdie 3 titels “slegs vir dapper lesers” is heeltemaal iets nuuts in Afrikaans. UIters geskik vir seuns ,dalk traag om te lees, so 9-11 jaar. Die kind word genooi om op ‘n besondere avontuur te gaan: in antieke Egipte moet hy die ou raaisels oplos en die hiërogliewe ontsyfer; Hercules weer in Antieke Griekeland het moeilike take om te voltooi en die jong lesertjie kan hom dalk daarmee help; en by die dinosourusse moet jy jouself verdedig teen die gevaarlike tirannosourus. Ek is vreeslik ingenome met hierdie aanbiedinge: Die illustreerder het d.m.v. die rekenaar ‘n heerlike kinder-avontuurbelaaide wêreld geskep; eietyds en uiters toeganklik. Hoogs aanbeveel vir jong lesers.
Vir die kleintjies:


Otto se groot woordeboek, deur Eric Hill ( H&R, 2007)

Otto bly nou maar een van die gewildste prenteboek karakters vir klein kindertjies. En wat ‘n slim manier om hulle woorde te leer as Otto aan die woord is! In die kombuis, op die plaas; in die skool; op die strand; by die huis; by ‘n partytjie; en in die slaapkamer. Pragtige boek. ‘n Aanwins vir biblioteke en versamelings tuis.
Bangkat en Boe, deur Michael Broad ( H&R, 2007) Vertaal in Afrikaans deur Charlotte Rademeyer.
Absoluut my gunsteling prenteboek van die afgelope tyd! Bangkat is vreeslik bang-vir alles. Dan nooi ‘n klein muisie Boe hom om buite te gaan speel. Maar Bangkat is oortuig daar is ‘n monster buite. Maar Boe verduidelik dat dit net ‘n pragtige boom is. As Bangkat dit dan buite waag, skrik hy vir ‘n skoenlapper, ‘n voël , maar uiteindelik oorwin hy al sy vrese en speel tog te lekker saam met Boe in die tuin. HIerdie wonderlike boek leer kinders om hul vrese te oorwin op ‘n avontuurlike en prettige manier. Die hele aanbieding is goed gebalenseerd; en die illustrasies is so mooi dat ‘n mens van lekkerte kan sing! Vir elke huis en biblioteek.
Stefan die ruimteridder , deur Timothy Knapman; illustrasies deur Adam Stower( H&R, 2007) In Afrikaans vertaal deur Kobus Geldenhuys.
Jong lesertjies het met Stefan kennis gemaak in sy avontuur met die prenteboekseerowers, en nou is hy op ‘n opwindende ruimte-avontuur. Majoor Melkweg en die heelal moet gered word…duer die jongste lid ooit van die Ster- Eskader. ‘n Lekker boek vir seuns! Lewendig, vol aksie en interessante karakters. ‘n Goeie resep om die kind in beheer van die gebeure te plaas- met die lees van ‘n storie beweeg hyself in die fantasie-wëreld in.
Mooiste Salma, deur Niki Daly ( Tafelberg, 2007) In Afrikaans vertaal deur Louise Steyn. Ook beskikbaar in Engels, isiXhosa en isiZulu.
Mooiste Salma word in hierdie waarskuwende storie geleer om nooit met vreemdelinge te praat nie; want dit kan ly tot ‘n reeks nare gebeure; soos om jou klere en krale en sandale te verloor en ‘n hond wat gladnie kan sing nie , te probeer leer sing! Om nie te praat van jou Ouma wat so lief is vir jou, se lewe in gevaar te stel nie. Ek persoonlik is nie mal oor die tipe illustrasies nie- baie wit spasies op die bladsye wat ‘n amper koue atmosfeer skep. Maar Niki Daly se liefde vir musiek en dans word weer uitgebeeld; karaktertjies wat dans en sing maak die aanbieding meer lewendig. Sal moet sien hoe kinders op die boek reageer. Teks in Afrikaans hinder my hier en daar- amper ‘n volwasse aanslag; en ek hou nie van die hoender se “mallerige oë” nie! ; ook geforseerd plek-plek. Die Ouma bv. oortuig nie as sy die kind vra om mark toe te gaan vir “jou Ouma wat so lief is vir jou nie!”Dalk sal dit werk as ‘n voorlees-storie. Dit gaan hier nie om werklike gevoelens nie, maar uitsluitlik om kinders te vermaak.

Trompie die leier, Trompie die hled; Trompie die mooi seun deur Topsy Smith (H&R, 2007) en Saartjie se skatte; Saartjie se kleik; Saartjie se geveg ( H&R, 2007) Redigeerders Kobus Geldenhuys en Adri Breed.

Ons jong lesertjies is baie opgewonde oor hierdie keurig versorgde heruitgawes van twee karakters wat die toets van die tyd deurstaan het: Saartjie en Trompie. Die taal is aangepas by ‘n moderne leser, en die verruklike omslae, veral vir die Saartjie-boeke, dra daartoe by om kinders weereens te prikkel om die stories te lees.
Winnie-die Pooh, deur A.A.Milne (Tafelberg, 2007) Afrikaans deur Alba Bouwer. Eerste Afrikaans uitgawe verskyn in 1985.
Die pragtige nuwe omslagontwerp is deur Teresa Williams. Hierdie is een van daardie klassieke werke wat ons vertroetel en vir ‘n nuwe geslag kinders in Suid Afrika toeganklik wil maak. Winnie bly maar altyd ‘n liefling-beer; en dankie aan die uitgewers wat dit moontlik maak met ‘n heruitgawe.
‘n Koning genaamd Leeu; deur Pieter W. Grobbelaar ( H&R, 2007) Eerste uitgawe in sagteband van die 1983 boek.
Hierdie mooi groep 25 leesbare Afrikaanse dierestories word in een bundel aangebied. Die boek hoort tuis in elke versameling van Afrikaanse oustories; sodat kinders altyd toegang tot fabels sal hê. Die formaat werk meer modern met die wit agtergrond, en gekleurde diere op die wit buiteblad. Die titel in rooi letters omring deur die blou raampie, trek makliker die aandag as die vorige roomkleurige omslag met die titel in bruin letters. Maar ouers sal die boek aan kinders moet bekend stel; hulle sal dit nie self maklik optel om te lees met hierdie voorkoms nie.
Nuwe kinder- en jeug boeke:

Slym en die Gogga-sirkus, deur Fanie Viljoen ( LAPA, 2007)

Ek was gaande oor die eerste Slym-storie; en nou is Slym die wurmpie in die skool saam met paddas. Sy beste vriend is Paddavoet, en sy juffrou Plat Anna. Hierdie storie gaan oor ‘n gogga-sirkus. Slym en Paddavoet is tog te opgewonde oor die gogga-sirkus, maar voor hulle te lekker kuier rokkel Knopie die spinnekop hulle weg; kamstig na die Grammadoela-bos, maar eintlik na die Dooie Paddapoel waar ‘n kis vol goue pitte op die bodem van die poel uitgehaal moet word. En nou is Bakvissie ook in Knopie se mag. Fanie Viljoen kan ‘n storie vertel! Kleintjies so tussen 7-9jaar sal tog te lekker lees aan hierdie avontuur van Slym en sy maat. Hoogs aanbeveel.
Alicia en die Zitzappers, deur Nelia Engelbrecht(H&R, 2007) Illustrasies deur Karl Stephan.
‘n Vermaaklike ligte verhaal waarin al die graadsewes wat die speletjies-arkade in die Mall gereeld besoek , nare zitse op hul gesigte ontwikkel. Alicia en Hanno raak agterdogtig toe hulle die seun van die apteker wat die Ac-be-gone salf verkoop wat die zitse gesond dokter, hoor gesels met ‘n man oor die bakteriee wat hul in die arkade versprei. Alicia besef dit is hul manier om maklik geld te maak uit die niksvermoedende graadsewes. Gemakllike skryftrant; lees lekker ; ligte leesstof vir 9-11 jariges. Word aanbeveel.

IBBY Honour books:

Van Wyk, Chris Ouma Ruby se geheim ( Giraffe books, 2006) Illustrated by Anneliese Voigt-Peters.

Ouma Ruby’s secret is our IBBYSA Honour book for illustration. Chris van Wyk wrote a memoir of growing up in Riverlea in Johannesburg, Shirley, goodness and mercy, and this story is taken from that book. He has rewritten, for a young audience, a story about his beloved grandmother Ruby. He loved visiting her house in Coronation with the fruit trees in the yard. One day he meets his Ouma in town where she buys him two books for his birthday. With her birthday 2 weeks later, he writes a letter which he wants her to read out loud . She made the excuse that she did not have her glasses with her. Then his mother took him aside and quietly told him that Grandmother Ruby cannot read. This gentle, very real story is sensitively illustrated in fine watercolours by Anneliese Voigt-Peters. Her images capture the essence of Johannesburg- the neighbourhood and houses and the extended van Wyk family inhabiting the boy’s world. A book to be treasured as a fine example of how an illustrator who knows her material and the environment in which the story takes place, can produce illustrations typically South African in a quiet reassuring manner. She is highly applauded for this little gem of a book, and we proudly selected this book as our Honour book for illustration.
Honour book for Afrikaans writing:

Suurlemoen! : ‘n storie oor rock, liefde en ‘n tuinkabouter (LAPA, 2007)

Suurlemoen is ‘n waardige keuse as n IBBYSA Honour boek vir skryfwerk in Afrikaans. Jaco Jacobs het hier daarin geslaag om op oortuigende wyse ‘n regte, egte tienerverhaal te vertel. Die sestienjarige Tiaan Fourie is die hoofkarakter. Saam met sy partner in crime, die baskitaarspeler en moeillkheidmaker, Zane le Roux word hulle aangemoedig om hulle band vir die Rumoer-kompetisie in te skryf deur die musiekonderwyser, Mnr Marx .So word die band Suurlemoen op ‘n onkonvensionle wyse gebore. Hulle kry uiteindelik toe ‘n vocalist en ‘n drummer - Bongi op dromme, en Liezl, die mooiste meisie in die skool, op vocals. Hierdie ruwe diamant, Suurlemoen, betree nou drie maande van klasverf, bloedsweet, hard oefen, idees vorm op Post-It-plakkers, lliefde, jaloesie en senuwees. Jaco Jacobs het ‘n lewendige, vermaaklike en genuine jeugverhaal geskep met genoeg opwinding en humor en ‘n sterk spanningselement om jong lesers te vermaak. Die karaktes is werklik tieners; die styl lig, gemakllik en onderhoudend. ‘n Graad 9 leerling aan Hoerskool Jan van Riebeeck gesels so oor die boek: “ Dit werk vir my. Ek wou die boek nie neersit nie.” Die kort hoofstukke het hom nuuskierig gemaak om verder te lees. “Die fotos, skribbel-gedeeltes en Post-it-plakkers waarop Tiaan notas vir homself skryf, is nogal cool. Dit laat die blaaie lewendig lyk”. Hierdie notas aan self bevat heerlike brokkies wyshede en kwinkslae, bv. “ Parykeer is die malste Maandag van jou lewe en die beste Maandag van jou lewe en die aakligste Maandag van jou lewe presies dieselfde dag.”! Jaco Jacobs word geluk gewens met ‘n oortuigende leesbare en toeganklike jeugverhaal.
Lona Gericke

Boekresensies Julie 2007:

Jacobs, Jaco Monster grappe ( LAPA, 2007) Met illustrasies deur Kobus Faber.

Sommer so ‘n vrolike boekie om jouself en maats te vermaak as julle lekker wil lag! Grappe oor monsters, mummies, vampiere. Spoke, geraamtes, alliens o.a., word vergesel van lawwe limerieke, klop-klop grappies en selfs ‘n resep om jou eie monsterslym te maak. Die illustrasies vul die teks mooi aan, en die boekie van net 56 bladsye is keurig versorg. Vir selflees of voorlees; alle ouderdomme!
Kruger, Martie Jy kan ook ‘n entrepreneur wees (LAPA, 2007), met illustrasies deur Kobus Faber.
Hierdie is die ideale boek vir elke jong persoon wat graag geld wil verdien deur ‘neie besigheid te begin. Dit bevat o.a. vrae met kolomme waarin die persoon sekere vrae moet beantwoord, wat die boek natuurlik nie geskik maak as biblioteek materiaal nie, maar uiters geskik vir ‘n jong ambisieuse kind om hom/haar rigting te gee vir ‘n begin. Deel 1 help hulle om idees tot aksie te verwerk; Deel 2 gee voorbeelde met fotos van suksesvolle jong entrepreneurs wat finaliste of wenners in die ATKV kompetisies was; en Deel 3 bevat ‘n hele alfabet van idees vir besighede. Regitg ‘n keurig versorgde publikasie, logies en uiters prakties uiteengesit, en daarby nog aantreklik en prikkelend. Hoogs aanbeveel.