My Book Corner was led to this one after its appearance on the 2011 CBCA shortlist ... it won. Do I agree? Absolutely (well you know I would not have put it here if I didn't!).
It took a few pages to get in to this one, but I think that is because I do not read a lot of books within the fantasy genre. Once I was 'in' ... I was hooked!
The Red Wind has a good steady pace to it, which is perfect for younger readers. Two cute, furry brothers are surviving alone, living off and with respect for the land. Then immediately they spot it ... the red wind. Its foreboding presence is something they try to ignore and as the two brothers are separated whilst Zluty completes his annual journey to the great forest to gather essential supplies for the winter, both characters are allowed to develop and grow as they face the disastrous consequences of the red wind.
The gorgeous pencil illustrations which accompany the book will really help younger readers engage with both the story and the well developed characters of Zluty and Bily. However this is definitely one for readers in the upper limit of this age range, or great extension for younger, more confident readers.
"it moved and roiled like the thick heavy smoke that came from a fire made of green ground cones."
The descriptive qualities of The Red Wind are great for readers of this age - encouraging their imaginations and expanding their own vocabulary. Literacy skills - check!
Isobelle ends the book leaving the reader wanting more and paving the way for Book 2 - perfect for encouraging enthusiastic young readers. The trailer below gives a wonderful look at Isobelle Carmody the writer from Apollo Bay.
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