Announcements, Inside Story, Reviews

Wonderful review for Inside Story in Magpies!

We are absolutely delighted that Inside Story: the wonderful world of writing, illustrating and publishing children’s books, which we published jointly with Little Pink Dog Books, under our collaborative imprint UPA Books, has just received a glowing review in the latest (September) issue of the prestigious, long-running children’s literature journal, Magpies. The review isn’t available online, but you can see a jpeg of it below. The same issue(available on subscription) also contains a fabulous three-page interview with Sophie Masson and Kathy Creamer, principal writers and compilers for Inside Story.

For anyone interested in Australian and New Zealand children’s books, it’s really worthwhile subscribing to Magpies, a fabulous resource packed with interviews, reviews and news, published five times a year. The magazines are beautifully produced in full colour and subscriptions are very reasonably priced, see here.

activities, Announcements, chapterbooks, free stuff, Junior fiction, New releases

Fantastic free Four Up In Lights activity pack

We’re delighted to present a fabulous activity pack for Four Up In Lights, the third and final book in the fantastic early readers series by Sophie Masson and Cheryl Orsini, published this month.

The activity pack, which includes story prompts, a word search, colouring pages, and more, was created by our talented editing intern Ash Taylor. Ash is also a student at the University of New England, studying Writing and Publishing, and hopes to have a career in the publishing industry later. Ash much enjoyed creating the activities, and says: ‘I look after some children who really like vehicles like trucks and cars and trains. So I thought about what sort of activities they might like to do or would come up with on their own after reading the books and went from there!’

Thanks, Ash!

We are sure everyone is just going to love these activities, which are free to download, print and use, for families, schools and libraries. Please note however that copyright remains with Christmas Press and that the activity pack may not be sold or used commercially.

Ash Taylor

To access the Four Up In Lights activity pack, just click below.

Announcements, celebrations, chapterbooks

Publication day for Four Up In Lights

Today is the publication day for Four Up In Lights! It’s the third and final book in the lovely early readers series created by writer Sophie Masson and illustrator Cheryl Orsini, recounting the incredible adventures of four lovable friends who just happen to be–vintage vehicles!

In this latest installment, Maxie, Fergie, Flash and Lady are finally on the set of the movie that will turn them into great stars: but nothing is what it seems, and soon the four friends are flung into an adventure like nothing they’ve ever seen before.

You can watch a fun little trailer for Four Up In Lights here.

The whole ‘Four’ series has had a wonderful response from readers and reviewers. Here’s something of what reviewers have had to say:

With themes of friendship, resilience, and teamwork, a fast-paced story, and fabulously expressive illustrations, young readers will delight in the adventures of these talking vehicle friends (Lisa Hoad, Reading Time)

Cheryl Orsini’s delicate pen illustrations depict the cars in their prime and through their challenges. The dialogue between the cars is humorous and entertaining. This is a perfect chapter book for younger readers. (Anastasia Gonis, Kids’ Book Review)

Sophie Masson’s funny, charming and original adventure story about four friends who just happen to have wheels is a great early chapter book…with lots of excitement, a little bit of peril and bags of friendship and heart …. the story races through its seven chapters and features black and white illustrations from Cheryl Orsini. (Matt Wilson, A Word About Books)

Congratulations to Sophie and Cheryl, and may Maxie, Fergie, Flash and Lady roll into the hearts of many, many young readers!

Announcements, authors, chapterbooks, Cover reveals, forthcoming books, Illustrators

Cover reveal for Four Up In Lights!

We are delighted to reveal the fabulous cover of Four Up In Lights, the third and final book in the fabulous chapter-book series by Sophie Masson and Cheryl Orsini, about four lovable friends who just happen to have wheels. The book will be released in September, and is a sequel to Four On the Run (2020) and Four All At Sea(2021). Isn’t it a gorgeous cover!

Cover by Cheryl Orsini

And below, look at the series as a set–doesn’t it look good!

activities, Announcements, free stuff, Junior fiction, New releases, Teachers' Notes

Activities and teachers’ notes for A Very Special Moon Mission now available!

We have some great free, downloadable activities and Teachers’ Notes available for A Very Special Moon Mission, which can be obtained from the United Publishers of Armidale website. The activities outside of the Teachers’ Notes have been created by Lucy Eddy, who also edited the book, and the Teachers’ Notes have great input from author Rebecca Fung and illustrator David Allan.

Find the activities here and the Teachers’ Notes here.

Announcements, authors, chapterbooks, Illustrators, New releases

Publication day for A Very Special Moon Mission!

Today is the publication day of A Very Special Moon Mission, Rebecca Fung’s fabulous new chapterbook for young readers, illustrated with lively pictures by David Allan. Available now in all good bookshops.

Here’s what an advance review, from Buzz Words, said about the book:

This chapter book for readers aged 7 to 10 years is lively, easy to read, and well-designed with quality paper. It is frequently illustrated with black and white and grey drawings and should be enjoyed by young readers interested in space adventure.

Congratulations to Rebecca and David, and happy publication day!

Announcements, chapterbooks, Cover reveals, forthcoming books

Cover reveal for A Very Special Moon Mission!

We are delighted to reveal today the fabulous cover of our July title, A Very Special Moon Mission, written by Rebecca Fung, with illustrations by David Allan. The striking cover illustration is by David Allan, and the cover design by Authors’ Elves. Isn’t it just a fantastic cover!

Here’s a bit about the book:

Phoebe and Elliott are space-mad best friends but Julia, the unpopular new girl at school, has tagged along with them on them on a visit to the local Space Station. There, they meet the three astronauts competing to be the first woman on the moon, and they’re also introduced to the magnificent rocket known as The Obsession, and its know-all super computer IMP. But when they start the rocket without meaning to, and IMP malfunctions, the adventure takes a real turn for the unexpected! Sure, a moon mission is great: but how do you get back to Earth?

Written with Rebecca Fung’s characteristic verve and humour, this is a really fun read for young readers 7-10 years old and is illustrated with lively pictures by David Allan.

Check out all other book details on our Chapter Books page.

Announcements, Books, celebrations, collaborations, Inside Story, Launches, New releases, United Publishers of Armidale, UPA Books

Inside Story publishes today!

Today is the official release date of Inside Story: the wonderful world of writing, illustrating and publishing children’s books, which is published under UPA Books, the joint imprint we collaborate on with fellow children’s books publisher Little Pink Dog Books. Inside Story is also published in association with the New England Writers’ Centre, supported by a significant grant from Create NSW and generous backers in a crowdfunding campaign. This fully-illustrated book is aimed both at aspiring writers, illustrators, and other book people, and also at anyone interested in contemporary Australian children’s books, as it’s a gorgeous showcase of some of the best work around and, as well, features illuminating quotes from over 70 Australian writers, illustrators, agents, editors, designers and publishers.

Christmas Press is proud to be involved in this beautiful book, and together with our partners Little Pink Dog Books and the New England Writers’ Centre, we hope it will reach many readers and help to inspire many new writers, illustrators, editors and designers in their journey into children’s books.

The book is available in all good bookshops and may also be purchased directly through us or Little Pink Dog Books.

There will be a national online launch of the book to which all are invited. It’s being run by the New England Writers’ Centre: it’s free, but you need to book, please see here.

To give you a bit of a taste about what Inside Story is about, read this interview with one of the compilers of the book here, and watch the little trailer below.

Announcements, authors, chapterbooks, Reviews

Lovely first review for Lucy Newton, Cat Trouble!

A lovely first review of Phoebe McArthur’s Lucy Newton, Cat Trouble, has just been published on the Read Plus blog. Here’s a short extract:

This is a short but charming story that is full of magical ingredients, apprentice witches, spell books and talking cats, a world that is part ordinary and part magic. Lucy has a habit of ignoring adult warnings and then having to solve the problems she creates. Her spell book is also a ‘learner’, hence the well-intentioned chaos that ensues.

You can read the whole review here.