Saturday, May 21, 2016

Review: The Girl Who Hated Australia by Jack Thompsen

The Girl Who Hated Australia
Not So Serious Jack Series, Book 1
by Jack Thompsen
Picture Book
ages 4-9
35 pages

Sometimes things that are new or unknown to us can seem scary. Sometimes we pretend we don’t like something, when really this thing frightens us. For seven-year-old Jorie, this thing is Australia. Her parents announce a family vacation “down under” and Jorie does not want to go. Her parents encourage her and along the way Jorie experiences things she never expected to – and has a wonderful time! Will Jorie continue to hate Australia? Or will her experience there change her mind?


Jorie is a seven-year-old girl whose parents have quite the surprise--they're going on a trip to Australia! This is something that would make travelers' hearts patter faster, but not Jorie. Oh no. She wants nothing to do with it. Not the flight. Not the country. Absolutely nothing.

This book made me smile, simply because it's a phase all kids seem to go through at one time or another. The simplest example is food and the dinner table. Jorie hasn't a clue if she'll like any of the things or not because, frankly, she's never tried. But stubbornness blocks reason. In other words, kids will get it--although they might not admit they've ever been that stubborn about something themselves.

The illustrations are colorful and nicely done, allowing little listeners to really dive into Jorie's situations. Especially the plane flight and Australia will interest the kids, and these pictures do a good job delivering the basic experience about both.

Jorie's problem comes to life in the writing. In general, it's well done and, except for a few more difficult terms in the beginning, kids will have no trouble understanding it. The flow is a bit rough--at times being in rhyme and at others, not so much. But the wording, especially as it goes along, is easy to fall into.

Summed up: this is a good read to express the troubles kids have with taking on something new. And they'll discover a little bit about Australia in the process.

And here he is. . .

Jack Thompsen, also known as Not So Serious Jack, enjoys writing stories, traveling, going on adventures and making new friends. He is a full-time computer programmer and has been writing since he was a kid. He finds writing is one of the best ways of sharing exciting worlds and ideas. Writing is powerful. One of his biggest goals is making this world a better place and he hopes his children’s book series will be the first big step in that direction.

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