November 1, 2019
Imprint: Walker Books Australia
Australian RRP: $19.99
New Zealand RRP: $21.99
The first word that popped into my head whilst reading this was ‘whimsical’ so it was no surprise to read the publisher’s blurb to find that was their choice of descriptor as well.
I found myself thinking I could sense echoes of Milly-Molly-Mandy (yes showing my age!). To my mind there was a familiar feeling of that same gentle child’s life in a little house spending time with her playmates, having small adventures and delighting in the world around her.
The narrative explores Magnolia’s year of being nine years old concluding as she turns ten and a secret is revealed. Magnolia is excellent at keeping secrets. She is also a great friend, loves Greek myths and hanging upside down in the magic tree with her bestie Imogen.
While not a difficult read I think it will take a fairly capable young reader to fully appreciate the nuances and would suggest it to be most suitable for children from around 8 years upwards.
It is a beautifully presented little book with its hardcover and delightful illustrations and really a delight to hold in one’s hands.
This is Wyatt’s debut novel and it will be interesting to see what might come next. I suspect there will be readers who will want to know more about Magnolia.