The Beast of Hushing Wood by Gabrielle Wang

On Sunday afternoon I was lucky to go the book launch of The Beast of Hushing Wood by Gabrielle Wang at Readings bookshop in Hawthorn. A book launch is like a ‘Book Birthday’ when a book is officially celebrated and released into the world for people to read. This is Gabrielle’s seventeenth book!

To celebrate, Gabrielle had cupcakes with toppers that were mini works of art using the stunning illustrations from her book. They were too beautiful to eat…almost!
(Click to enlarge the photos)



Family, friends and fellow authors were invited to the book launch and it was wonderful to see three generations together with Gabrielle’s mum and daughter by her side.


Fellow author Cath Crowley interviewed Gabrielle about her book and then we were treated to Gabrielle reading some of her story which left us wanting more! I lined up to have our book signed and Gabrielle wrote an important message for her readers…


‘Why fit in when you can stand out’

I follow Gabrielle on Twitter and Instagram and have enjoyed watching her create The Beast of Hushing Wood as she shared her ideas, illustrations and progress. Gabrielle actually contacted schools via Twitter in February 2016 to ask students which name she should give her main character which you can read about HEREGabrielle shared photos of Morocco and the Berkshire Woods in Massachusetts, USA on Twitter and after reading her book I can see how her visit to Morocco in North Africa influenced the magic realism in her story and spending time in the woods was very important in helping her create the setting of Hushing Wood and the town of Dell Hollow.

I couldn’t wait to read The Beast of Hushing Wood and sat under my tree in the sunshine lost for the afternoon in Hushing Wood with the brave and adventurous Ziggy Truegood. I think it might be my favourite book of Gabrielle’s so far! 

Ziggy Truegood lives in a tiny town deep in Hushing Wood, where strange things are happening. The townspeople are fighting, Ziggy feels like something is hunting her, and her beloved woods have become dark and hostile. When exotic Raffi and his grandfather arrive in town, Ziggy finds herself strangely drawn to them. But are they there to save Ziggy, or are they the hunters? 

The Beast of Hushing Wood is a story filled with mystery, adventure and magic beautifully woven together with Gabrielle’s exquisite way with words and her delicately detailed illustrations…

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Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul

A BIG thank you to one of our Year 6 boys for the link to the movie trailer for Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul. The movie is due for release in Australia on June 22nd.

This morning on Twitter, Jeff Kinney shared some amazing statistics about his Wimpy Kid series…

The Wimpy Kids series

  • Has been translated into 53 languages
  • Has over 180 million books in print world wide
  • Is one of the most successful children’s series ever published

Visit the Wimpy Kid website as Jeff Kinney celebrates the 10 year anniversary of his Diary of a Wimpy Kid series.

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Visual note-taking with The Boy and the Spy

In library classes over the past few weeks the Year Five classes have been listening to the exciting historical fiction novel  The Boy and the Spy by Felice Arena. This was the perfect opportunity to try some visual note-taking as students listened to the first few chapters introducing the main characters. We discussed and looked at examples of how to use colour, font, text size, lines etc to help record their visual notes. The Year Fives then tried some of these techniques with their words and images to record information and parts of the story that stood out to them as they listened. 

Our visual note-taking skills are a work in progress and here are some examples…

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Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie

A BIG thank you to one of our Year 5 boys who sent me the link to the movie trailer for Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie. There are going to be LOTS of excited fans of the Captain Underpants series who will want to see the movie! It will be released in the USA on June 2nd and hopefully we won’t have to wait too long here in Australia. Until then….enjoy the movie trailer…it looks the movie is going to be so much fun! 

In the meantime have fun exploring the website of Dav Pilkey the creator of Captain Underpants…

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Meeting Judith Rossell

Judith Rossell‘s books Withering- by-Sea and Wormwood Mire are wonderfully mysterious books set in Victorian England whose main character is an 11 year old orphan called Stella. They have been very popular books in our library this term! I mentioned to one of our Year 5 students that Judith was going to be be at Federation Square and was thrilled that she went in with her family to meet Judith for herself. You can read her guest blog post below…

Meeting Judith Rossell

On February 26th, children’s author Judith Rossell was at Federation Square and I was lucky enough to meet her, get my books signed and I had a photo taken with her. Judith has been researching about schools in the 1880’s for her next book. She was asking my brother and I for our opinion about what we would like to read about in her next book. One of her questions was if we thought Stella [the main character] should go to a nice school or a strict school? We said the strict school!

Judith Rossell is a very friendly person, her books are very interesting and I definitely recommend them.

Now we are looking forward to Judith’s third book to see what happens to Stella next and if she ends up going to a strict school…

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