DEC Scan Journal : February 2011
Scan Vol 30 No 1 February 2011 81 KUSAKA, Hidenori & Mato Pokémon adventures. Volume 3 Viz Media, USA, 2009 ISBN 9781421530567 A volume in the popular Pokémon set, based on video games of the same name, the book relates to the Red, Blue and Green versions of the game. Red is the protagonist and on his extraordinary journey he meets his rival, Blue. Eventually these two characters are pitted against one another in the league championships. Presented as a series of short adventures, these tales are fast moving and action packed. A typically Japanese publication, this English version is read from right to left. The black and white artwork is engaging and drives an episodic story that is suitable for young readers who are excited by manga style. C. Sly USER LEVEL: Stage 2 Stage 3 Paper $12.95 SCIS 1473975 PARK, Mac Boy vs beast: battle of the worlds [series] Pop & Fizz, Vic, 2010 Aiming to engage readers by motivating their literacy attack skills, this series has an unstated assumption that middle and upper primary students know what dragons and dinosaurs are, and are well accustomed to sophisticated computer graphics. The fonts are large, the sentence structures are basic and the narratives are simple. Multimodal delivery is effectively employed, complete with computer game references and graphic novel sequences, to create a context of science fiction and fantasy. Titles in the series have a consistent style and these books will readily find an audience. V. Davidson USER LEVEL: Stage 2 Stage 3 Paper $9.99 each Reviewed titles in this series: Aquatan SCIS 1461280 Infernix SCIS 1461274 Terradon SCIS 1461284 Tornados SCIS 1461282 PARKER, Jake The star crusher Graphix, New York, 2010 (Missile mouse) ISBN 978054511759 Missile Mouse is a talented agent of the Galactic Security Agency with a gritty sense of humour, but he may be too much of a rebel to succeed in the espionage business. He is given Agent Hyde as an offsider to help track down the secrets of the star crushing machine. The lush glossy graphics employ the full range of colour both for foregrounding characters and for the emotive scene setting. The dialogue is snappy without being corny and the plot lines are amusing and complex enough to engage the more savvy graphic novel reader. Here is an old fashioned adventure story with enough science fiction to appeal to modern youth. V. Davidson USER LEVEL: Stage 3 Stage 4 Paper $16.99 SCIS 1461343 PRYOR, Boori Monty & ORMEROD, Jan Shake a leg Allen & Unwin, NSW, 2010 ISBN 9781741758900 This story is one of hope, reconciliation and surprise for most readers as Boori welcomes the reader to share his stories which include the pizza making murri fella, and his story of the crocodile and the boy who did not listen. This is a rich text that will engage young readers in several ways. It may challenge their concepts of identity and what it means to be Australian. The text is set out like a comic book with speech bubbles and narrated text. In the pages of this graphic novel, modern multicultural Australia meets the ancient traditions which are explained and expressed through dance and connected to the story's present through the theme of food, which is used to symbolize culture. One character comments, That story tastes good, and this rich, delicious narrative will taste good to many young readers. K. Rushton USER LEVEL: Stage 1 Stage 2 Stage 3 KLA: English; HSIE SYLLABUS: English K--6; HSIE K--6 $24.99 SCIS 1470751 SMILEY, Jane Nobody's horse Faber and Faber, UK, 2010 ISBN 9780571253548 The novel takes its audience on a realistic journey through the trials and tribulations of adolescence. The main character, Abby, faces many problems at school, compli- cated by her family's religious background. She also has to work long hours training horses with her father, as this allows them to keep the farm. One of these horses, Grumpy George, has more problems than Abby, but she is resolute in trying to help him so he will find a good home. This is a moving story of determination that will engage young readers with its lasting message of concentrating on the solutions, not the problem. M. Whitfield USER LEVEL: Stage 3 Paper $16.99 SCIS 1468930 STEINHOFEL, Andreas The pasta detectives Chicken House, UK, 2010 ISBN 9781906427276 Rico lives with his mother in an apartment block in Berlin, where the ALDI kidnapper Mr 2000 has been kidnapping children for ransom. Rico finds evidence in his back garden and he becomes involved in the mystery after his friend Oscar goes missing. Even though he has a learning difficulty, Rico is determined to solve the mystery and save Oscar. Translated from German, this sensitive and fascinating mystery novel is filled with interesting details that link the story. Students will enjoy rereading the book to investigate those important clues that seemed irrelevant on first reading, but which are actually integral to the story plot. R. Parnis USER LEVEL: Stage 2 Stage 3 Paper $14.95 SCIS 1459477 See the Resource reviews database <www.schools.nsw.edu.au/ resourcereviews> for reviews of more resources.