15 great (Aussie) school holiday reads + giveaway


I love a good book list and on the blog today I am thrilled to have yet another guest post from author Allison Tait. Allison is the author of the best selling The Mapmaker Chronicles series, and has just launched the first book in a thrilling new adventure series.

The Book Of Secrets (Ateban Cipher #1) – What’s the secret of the book, and why is it so valuable? These are the questions Gabe must answer when a dying man hands him a coded manuscript with one instruction: take it to Aidan. Gabe is hurled into a quest that takes him beyond his monastery home and into a world of danger, intrigue, adventure and unexpected friendship – a quest that will challenge everything he thought he knew about right and wrong.

Read on after the list to have a chance to win a copy of The Book of Secrets (Ateban Cipher #1).

15 great (Aussie) school holiday reads

There’s nothing like the long, lazy days of school holidays for encouraging kids to read. But choosing just what to read can sometimes be a problem. With some help from the fabulous members of the Your Kid’s Next Read Facebook group, I’ve created a list of top holiday reads for kids (5-12+) – all by Australian authors.

91-Storey Treehouse (7+) by Andy Griffiths and Terry Denton


The latest installment in the Treehouse series broke all sales records when it was released in August.
Check out 91-Storey Treehouse on Booktopia

Mr Bambuckle’s Remarkables (8+) by Tim Harris


Described as ‘quirky funny’, with lots of illustrations, this is the first in a new series about the kind of teacher we all wish we’d had! YKNR members report that their kids are loving it!
Check out Mr Bambuckle’s Remarkables on Booktopia.

Polly & Buster (7+) By Sally Rippin


The members of YKNR report that this is a favourite with boys and girls, aged 7+. A beautiful hardcover book.
Check out Polly & Buster on Booktopia

500 Minutes of Danger (10+) by Jack Heath


10 nail-biting short stories for kids who love danger and excitement.
Check out 500 Minutes of Danger on Booktopia

D-Bot Squad (5+) By Mac Park


With four books out now and two more coming on October 1, this series is already a smash hit with early readers. The books promise a ‘world kids love using words they can read’ and boys, in particular, are lapping them up!
Check out D-Bot Squad on Booktopia

Alice-Miranda in Hollywood (8+) By Jacqueline Harvey


The 16th book in this ever-popular series takes Alice-Miranda to Hollywood!
Check out Alice-Miranda in Hollywood on Booktopia

Pippa’s Island (8+) By Belinda Murrell


The first two books in this new series by Belinda Murrell have been embraced by girls and, with its tropical island setting and themes of friendship and courage, is perfect holiday reading!
Check out Pippa’s Island on Booktopia

Spooky Weird (Weirdo 9) (6+)By Anh Do and Jules Faber


The latest installment in this perennially popular series will give kids a laugh!
Check out Spooky Weird on Booktopia

Goodnight Stories for Rebel Girls: 100 Tales of Extraordinary Women By Elena Favilli and Francesca Cavallo


This book comes up regularly as a recommendation in the YKNR group, either as a book to read aloud together or as a gift for older children (10+).
Check out Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls on Booktopia

The Bad Guys (episode 6): Aliens vs Bad Guys (6+) By Aaron Blabey


The latest book in this award-winning series is not out until 1 October, but YKNR members report that their kids can’t wait! Pick it up while you’re out and about in the holidays.
Check out The Bad Guys on Booktopia

Take Three Girls (12+) By Cath Crowley, Simone Howell and Fiona Wood


Older readers will love this raw, funny look at female friendship as three girls grapple with very contemporary problems. Written by three award-winning authors.
Check out Take Three Girls on Booktopia

Ava’s Big Move (Surf Riders Club #1) (7+) By Mary van Reyk


What could be better for a school holiday read than the first in a new series about a group of girls learning to surf and navigate life together!
Check out Ava’s Big Move on Booktopia

Puppy Planet (Starring Olive Black) (8+) By Alex Miles (ill, Maude Guesne)


Olive Black, aged 10, is a superstar actress juggling life as a star with all of the day-to-day dramas of school, friendship and growing up. Puppy Planet is the fourth book in the series.
Check out Puppy Planet, Starring Olive Black on Booktopia

The Shop At Hoopers Bend By Emily Rodda (9+)


This beautiful story about Quil, aged 11, who decides to get off the train one stop early on her way to camp. It’s a lovely Australian story about coming home.
Check out The Shop At Hoopers Bend on Booktopia

The Book Of Secrets (Ateban Cipher #1) (10+) By A.L. Tait


The first book in the new series from the author of The Mapmaker Chronicles, this is another fantasy adventure story full of excitement, fun and friendship. At its heart is a mysterious book, written in code.
Check out The Book Of Secrets on Booktopia

Allison Tait is the author of the bestselling children’s adventure series The Mapmaker Chroniclesand a multi-genre writer and speaker with more than 20 years’ experience in magazines, newspapers and online publishing. Allison also is the founder of the super useful Facebook Group Your Kid’s Next Read where parents share books their kids have loved and help you find the next grat read for your child.

The Book of Secrets (Ateban Cipher #1) Giveaway (PLEASE NOTE: The giveaway is now closed)

Thanks to Allison, I have a copy of The Book Of Secrets to giveaway to a reader of Planning With Kids. To enter please complete the form below sharing what book/s are on your kids’ reading lists at the moment?

Congratulations to Rosalie who is the lucky winner of The Book Of Secrets. Roaslie answered “My almost 8 yr old daughter has Pippa’s Island, Harry Potter #2 and Dork Diaries all ready to go and is working her way through the 50+ hardcover Enid Blyton books that were my husbands when he was little!”

Terms and conditions

  • To enter you must complete the form below. Upon entering the competition you will be signed up to Allison Tait’s newsletter. If you are reading via email, please click here to enter if you cannot see the form.
  • The giveaway is open to Australian residents only.
  • The winner will be notified via email. You must have a valid email address to enter. If no response is received with 48 hours, a new winner will be selected.
  • The give away will close Fri 29th Septemeber 2017.
  • The winner will be chosen by Planning With Kids based on creativity and you can only enter once.
  • Please see full terms and conditions here.

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