143 Main St Mornington (03) 5975 5034


BOOK LAUNCH: Patrick Guest’s The Ricker Racker Club

Earlier this year when we were crunching the numbers on our best sellers for 2015, we were rather delighted to discover that our single biggest selling picture story book for the year was a special little book written by local author, Patrick Guest, That’s What Wings Are For.

So we are truly delighted to be assisting Pat in the official launch of his new book, The Ricker Racker Club.


Have a listen to Patrick chat about the launch with Heather Mc on her Morning Show on RPP FM Mornintgon.

Join us for some fun in the Great Outdoors – learn the SECRET handshake, the SECRET password and the SECRET SILLY DANCE – if you know how to be brave and kind, come along and join us for a meeting of The Ricker Racker Club!!

As the event is to be held outside, we have a bad weather contingency of falling back to Farrell’s Bookshop at 143 Main Street, Mornington. If you wish to be notified on the day of any change in location, please follow the Facebook event page, or alternatively register your mobile number in store (we will send an automated SMS notification).

the-ricker-racker-clubThe Ricker Racker Club

Patrick Guest (Illustrated by Nicholas Eckstrom)
$25.00 Hardback
Release Date 1 April 2016

To be in the Ricker Racker Club you have to be brave. You have to be kind. You have to not be a girl…but some people are better than others at being both kind and brave. Patrick Guest and Nathaniel Eckstrom tell us who and why and how in this lively story about silly rules and even sillier situations.

untitled (12)That’s What Wings Are For

Patrick Guest (Illustrated by Daniella Germain)
$25.00 Hardback
Available now

There are three things that all respectable dragons need:
Strong wings for flying.
Strong lungs for breathing fire,
and strong, shiny scales …
But Bluey the Dragon has none of these.
Even so, Bluey has other abilities, some of them truly wonderful … if only he can work out what they are!

Patrick wrote this book for his son and other children, who suffer from Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.  You can watch an interview with Patrick about the book here.

Farrell’s Top Selling Kids Books in 2015

2015 was a big year for kids books, with The 65 Storey Treehouse the biggest selling Australian book in the country!

Wonder 9781743533222crayons quit

Click on the links below to see the top kids and teen books at Farrell’s during the year.

Picture Story Books

Junior Fiction (6-12yo)

Teen Fiction (12yo+)

Junior Non-Fiction


Picture Story Books: Some new and some not-so-new…

The New…

Imaginary Fred

Eoin Colfer / Oliver Jeffers, HB $28.00

9780062379559Ages: 4+

Sometimes, with a little electricity, or luck, or even magic, an imaginary friend might appear when you need one. An imaginary friend like Fred… Fred floated like a feather in the wind until a lonely little boy wished for him and found a friendship like no other. The perfect chemistry between Eoin Colfer’s text and Oliver Jeffer’s artwork make for a dazzlingly original colour gift book.


Danny Parker / Freya Blackwood, HB $24.95

PerfectOn a perfect day, the hours stretch endlessly ahead. Scribbling with chalk, running with kites, digging for shells … paddling, climbing, dreaming. Hour unfolds upon hour, with reassuring comfort and sleep beckoning at the end. A beautiful story alongside magical illustrations make this picture book a must have.

Wombat Wins

Jackie French / Bruce Whatley, HB $25.00

wombat winsFrom the award-winning, bestselling creators of Diary of a Wombat.

Ages: 3+

Forget Rio and the Olympic Games in 2016; for us it will be about a wombat … winning. Yes, Mothball has become an athlete, albeit a little accidentally. In her never-ending quest for carrots, Mothball stumbles upon children at the local school competing in their school sports. And despite her somewhat limited physique and lack of training, Mothball manages to go home with a gold medal.

Why puff and pant when you can eat, sleep and scratch?

The Day The Crayons Came Home

Drew Daywalt / Oliver Jeffers, HB $25.00

Crayons HomeThe hilarious sequel to the international bestseller The Day The Crayons Quit!

Ages: 4-8

Watch out – the crayons are back and they’re crosser than ever! One day Duncan receives a set of postcards from his crayons who been lost, forgotten, broken – even melted in a clothes dryer and stuck to a pair of underpants! A hilarious text and joyful illustrations combine to show that crayons have feelings too in this laugh-out-loud sequel to bestselling picture book The Day the Crayons Quit.

The Fox and the Star

Coralie Bickford-Smith, HB $35.00

9781846148507Once there was a Fox who lived in a deep, dark forest. For as long as Fox could remember, his only friend had been Star, who lit the forest paths for Fox every night. But then one night, Star is not there, and Fox has to face the forest all alone…

A beautiful, unique new book. Watch an interview with author, Coralie Bickford-Smith, here.

Eye to Eye

Graeme Base, HB $27.00

9780670078592A child, brave and curious about the world, flies high over the mountains, goes out on a limb and dives into the deep.  From here, he can see eye to eye with majestic and curious creatures, from the miniature to the enormous, the everyday to the fantastic.

From one of Australia’s favourite picture book creators comes a remarkable look at the connection between the animals that inhabit our Earth – even the human ones.  Eye to Eye will give you an amazing new perspective on the world!

Jill and the Dragon

Lesley Barnes, HB $25.00

9781849763400‘… and they all lived happily ever after…’

At least, that’s what Jill’s story book tries telling her, but Jill can’t help noticing that at the end of the story, one character looks far from happy. Dragon is despised by the King because all he can do is singe, burn and barbeque. So in an attempt to see her fairy tale ring true, Jill invites Dragon out of the book so she can teach him some alternative life skills. Dragon throws himself into all of Jill’s favourite things: flower arranging, fashion styling, playing the trumpet, and hosting a tea party, but with disappointing results. When it seems as though all hope is lost, Jill and Dragon discover that he has one very unique, and palatable, talent…

A stunning debut from an award-winning illustrator, Jill and Dragon introduces a feisty, independent-minded new character in Jill, and reminds us that everyone has a talent, however well hidden.


Rosalind Beardshaw, HB $20.00

9780857634146An inspiring and charming novelty book celebrating the creative possibilities and limitless joy of the simple cardboard box.

What would YOU do with a box? When four toddlers find some toys in cardboard boxes, they have fun with them for a while. But, before long, the friends’ interest in the toys wains and their attention turns to the boxes themselves. What could they do with SO many boxes, they wonder? An inspiring and charming novelty book celebrating the creative possibilities and limitless joy of the boxes.

…and the Not-As-New…

Today We Have No Plans

Jane Godwin / Anna Walker, HB $25.00

9780670075201A busy week, a slower day
Brings time to dream and time to play.

From the creators of the much-loved All Through the Year comes a journey through a week in the life of an Australian family, celebrating those precious days that have no plans.

Kissed By the Moon

Alison Lester, $20.00

9780670076758May you, my baby, sleep softly at night, and when dawn lights the world, may you wake up to birdsong.

Part poem, part lullaby, this gentle story celebrates a baby’s wonder at our beautiful world. From much-loved Australian Children’s Laureate Alison Lester comes a timeless book to share and to treasure.

Book With No Pictures

B.J. Novak, HB $20.00

9780141361789You might think a book with no pictures seems boring and serious. Except . . . here’s how books work. Everything written on the page has to be said by the person reading it aloud. Even if the words say . . .

Blork. Or Bluurf. And even if the words include things like Blaggity Blaggity and My Head Is Made Of Blueberry Pizza! That’s the rule. That’s the deal.

Brilliantly irreverent and very, very silly, The Book With No Pictures will delight kids and have them begging for more. From award-winning US comic writer and actor, B.J. Novak.

This is a Ball

Beck and Matt Stanton, HB $20.00

y648For the giggling masses comes this brilliant Australian book that will frustrate … and delight!

For the Grown-Ups:

You know how you’re right all the time? All. The. Time. Yes, well, it’s time to give the kids a turn. Which is why everything you read in this book is going to be wrong. But that’s okay, because the kids are going to correct you. And they’re going to love it!

Ages: 4+

Use Your Imagination

Nicola O’Byrne, HB $25.00; PB $14.00

9780857633354An inventive, entertaining story about how an imaginative rabbit outwits a wolf and becomes the hero of his own adventure.

Rabbit is BORED. What shall he do? Luckily, Wolf has the perfect solution. “Why not write a story?” he suggests. “I am a librarian, you know.” Well, Rabbit is just delighted – what a brilliant idea! And so Wolf teaches Rabbit to use his imagination to create the perfect story with lots of exciting props and interesting characters. What a kind and helpful wolf! Rabbit is DESPERATE to know what happens when it suddenly becomes clear that Wolf is very hungry – uh-oh, so THAT’S how the story ends. But Wolf hasn’t reckoned on Rabbit’s brilliant imagination and, in a final clever twist, Rabbit saves himself from the wily old wolf. “Now, that was a good idea,” says Rabbit.


Children’s Book Week Story-writing Competition Winners!

We felt very privileged to receive so many wonderful entries to our Children’s Book Week Story-writing competition. Suspense, humour, tragedy – we had all genres covered, as well as some truly beautiful illustrations and great cartoons.

And here are our lucky winners…

Lower Primary

WINNER:      Ayana Barker – Did You See That Whale?


(Click on the picture to see the whole story)


Lilyana Holder for Pete the Pineapple Surf’s Up.    Finn Clarke for The Boy Who Didn’t Know What to Write!

WIN_20150831_121518 WIN_20150831_121536


Upper Primary


Short Story: Jessie Seal – Blank Pages

Picture Story: Mikayla Liddell – My Mate Jet


 (Click on the picture to see the whole story)

Lower Secondary – no entries received

Upper Secondary


Grace Gooda – Ripple

We’ve created a separate webpage for each of the winning stories – click on the links to read them.

And there are a few special mentions as well:

WIN_20150831_121826 WIN_20150831_121838Niah Barker (4yo) – for being our youngest entrant overall, in the specially created ‘Pre-school, not-quite-eligible’ category. We loved your entry about the fairies, Niah – especially the beautiful musical bell you attached to your book. Keep up your writing and illustrating and we look forward to seeing your first eligible entry next year.

The Preps at St Macartans – we had an amazing response from the budding authors and illustrators at St Mac’s – thanks for all your efforts. Special mentions for the following entrants:

  • Ollie Ewer for 100 Rats: we wonder if you were inspired by either the story of the Pied Piper or perhaps the movie Ratatouille. Your illustrations of all the rats were fantastic.

  • Sienna Little for Princess Puppy: you had a lot of wonderful detail in your story, and the banner illustrations across the top of the pages and rainbow at the end were beautiful.

  • Grace Little for The Kitten: we thought the development of your story was excellent – from Cuddly the Kitten getting lost, to meeting a bunny, who couldn’t help, to then meeting a kind bird, who knew where to go to get home. A very happy ending.

  • Wilbur Altschwager for The Marshmallows and the Fairies: your illustrations were wonderful and we really like eating marshmallows, just like your fairies.

  • Jasper Gomme for Steve and the Volcano: your story was very exciting with the volcano erupting and the lava threatening all the people’s homes. We were very relieved when Steve was able to save them in his rocket. A very exciting story.

  • Holli Penpraze for Liley and the Monster: we thought it was great that although Liley was frightened by the monster to start with, she was able to help him, and in the end they were friends and danced together.

WIN_20150831_121733 WIN_20150831_121749 WIN_20150831_121802


Thank you to everyone who entered and keep up the great work in using your imaginations and creative skills to write and illustrate more wonderful stories.

And remember – the key to being a great writer is to read as much as you can – so keep reading!!

Children’s Book Council Awards 2015


And the winners are…

Last Friday saw the CBCA announcement of the winners and honour books for this year, officially launching Children’s Book Week, which runs from Saturday 22 August to Friday 28 August.


Here is the list of all winning titles:

Younger Readers

(for independent young readers)


untitled (7)The Cleo Stories: The Necklace and the Princess

(Libby Gleeson, Illustrated by Freya Blackwood)

untitled (10) Withering by SeaHonour books:

Two Wolves (Tristan Bancks)

Withering-by-Sea: A Stella Montgomery Intrigue (Judith Rossell)

Older Readers

(Mature readers)


untitled (6)The Protected

(Claire Zorn)

untitled (11) untitled (12)Honour Books:

Nona and Me (Clare Atkins)

The Minnow (Diana Sweeney)

Picture Book

(Birth – 18 years – some may be intended for more mature readers)


untitled (9)My Two Blankets

(Illustrated by Freya Blackwood, Text by Irena Kobald)

untitled (13) 441a56308705f674e54cc226b55a539aHonour books:

One Minute’s Silence (Illustrated by Michael Camilleri, Text by David Metzenthen)

The Stone Lion (Illustrated by Ritva Voutila, Text by Margaret Wild)

Early Childhood

(pre-reading to early reading stages)


untitled (8)Go To Sleep, Jessie!

(Libby Gleeson, Illustrated by Freya Blackwood)

untitled (15) untitled (16)Honour books:

Scary Night (Lesley Gibbes, Illustrated by Stephen Michael King)

Noni the Pony Goes to the Beach (Alison Lester)

Eve Pownall Award for Information Books

(Birth – 18 years – some may be intended for more mature readers)


untitled (17)A-Z of Convicts in Van Diemen’s Land

(Simon Barnard)

untitled (18) untitled (19)Honour books:

Tea and Sugar Christmas (Jane Jolly, Illustrated by Robert Ingpen)

Audacity: Stories of Heroic Australians in Wartime (Carlie Walker)

For a full list of all short-listed titles, see this post.





Children’s Book Week 2015: Books Light Up Our World!



Children’s Book Week

Saturday 22 August – Friday 28 August

We’re holding a story-writing competition to celebrate Children’s Book Week this year.  There are some Farrell’s book vouchers up for grabs as prizes, so be sure to get your entry in if you’d like to be in the running.  We will also share the winning entries here on our website.

There are four different age groups and conditions:

  1. Lower Primary – Prep to Year 2/3
    (if you’re in Year 3, you can choose which group you’d like to enter)

    • Picture story format

  2. Upper Primary – Year 3/4 to Year 6

    • Picture story or short story format

  3. Lower Secondary – Years 7 – 9

    • Short story format. Please try to limit to 2 pages / 1000 words.

  4. Upper Secondary – Years 10 – 12

    • Short story format.  Please try to limit to 3 pages / 1500 words.

In all groups, limit of one entry per person.

A note re page / word limits in the older groups – we won’t exclude an entry for being longer than this, but please bear in mind that we may have a lot of entries to get through, so it will be helpful if they’re not too long!

Hard copy entries can be dropped in our competition box in store (we are happy to return them after the competition if you wish to come and collect them again).  Electronic entries can be submitted to events@farrells.com.au with the Subject: CBW Story Comp.  Please use either Microsoft Word or PDF format.

Please ensure you include your name, age and group of entry, and contact information (phone and email).

Entries will close on Friday 28 August at the end of Children’s Book Week.

We will announce the winners as soon as we can, hopefully the following week, depending on the number of entries we receive.


story-writing-ideasSo what will you write about?

  • You could use the Children’s Book Week theme from this year – “Books Light Up Our Lives” – or their firefly character as a starting point for your story.

  • Think about some of your favourite books you love to read and see if you can create something similar.

  • For those of you writing picture story books, have a look at this fun interactive book about how to write a story or perhaps try out the Scholastic Story Starter.  (Be sure to get Mum and Dad’s okay to use the computer).

  • For Groups 2-4, have a look at Andy Griffith’s Once Upon A Slime for some tips on writing or check out this YouTube video of him speaking with a school group about how to write.

  • Ask your school librarian or teacher for some ideas.

  • Be creative!  Your imagination is a unique and wonderful thing – so put it to good use!  :).

We can’t wait to see what wonderful creative stories you share with us.

Happy Writing!

CBCA Short list 2015




This week saw the announcement of the CBCA’s Short list for the Book of the Year Awards. The winners will be announced in late August.

For a full list of Short listed titles and Notables winners, please visit the CBCA website.




Early Childhood

  • Pig the Pug (Aaron Blabey, Scholastic)
  • Scary Night (Lesley Gibbes, illus by Stephen Michael King, Working Title Press)
  • Go to Sleep, Jessie (Libby Gleeson, illus by Freya Blackwood, Little Hare)
  • A House of Her Own (Jenny Hughes, illus by Jonathan Bentley, Hardie Grant Egmont)
  • Snail and Turtle are Friends (Stephen Michael King, Scholastic)
  • Noni the Pony goes to the Beach (Alison Lester, A&U)


Picture Book of the Year

  • Rivertime (Trace Balla, A&U)
  • My Two Blankets (Irena Kobald, illus by Freya Blackwood, Little Hare)
  • One Minute’s Silence (David Metzenthen, illus by Michael Camilleri, A&U)
  • The Duck and the Darklings (Glenda Millard, illus by Stephen Michael King, A&U)
  • The Stone Lion (Margaret Wild, Ritva Voutila, Little Hare)
  • Fire (Jackie French, illus by Bruce Whatley, Scholastic)


Younger Readers

  • Two Wolves (Tristan Bancks, Random House)
  • The Simple Things (Bill Condon, illus by Beth Norling, A&U)
  • The Cleo Stories: The Necklace and the Present (Libby Gleeson, illus by Freya Blackwood, A&U)
  • Bleakboy and Hunter Stand out in the Rain (Steven Herrick, UQP)
  • Figgy in the World (Tamsin Janu, Omnibus)
  • Withering-by-Sea: A Stella Montgomery Intrigue (Judith Rossell, ABC Books)



Older Readers

  • Nona & Me (Clare Atkins, Black Inc.)
  • Intruder (Christine Bongers, Woolshed Press)
  • Are You Seeing Me? (Darren Groth, Woolshed Press)
  • The Incredible Adventures of Cinnamon Girl (Melissa Keil, Hardie Grant Egmont)
  • The Minnow (Diana Sweeney, Text)
  • The Protected (Claire Zorn, UQP)

July Release: “Rescue on Nim’s Island” by Wendy Orr

In her third gripping adventure, Nim unearths an amazing opalised fossil, but this discovery puts her island in terrible danger.

Nim lives on an island with her father, Jack, a marine iguana called Fred, a sea lion called Selkie, and their friend Alex Rover, the adventure writer. Nim’s island is the most beautiful place in the world, and she wouldn’t live anywhere else.

When Jack invites a group of scientists to visit, they bring their children as well. But two of the scientists have plans other than studying algae… By the time Nim discovers what they really want, and what they will do to get it, the children are in grave danger. And so is the island! Nim must choose between saving a natural treasure and saving someone’s life.

Congratulations to Jackie French who is our second Australian Children’s Laureate

Congratulations to Jackie French who is our second Australian Children’s Laureate.

The theme for her year is “Share a Story”.

‘Stories tell us who we are. They teach us empathy so we understand who others are. They give us the power to imagine and create the future’.

- Jackie French

Look at www.childrenslaureate.org.au to read more!!

CBCA Shortlist 2014

Children’s Book Council of Australia Shortlist 2014


Book of the Year
Older Readers

The Incredible Here and Now by Felicity Castagna
Life in Outer Space by Melissa KeilThe First Third by Will Kostakis
Fairytales for Wilde Girls by Allyse Near
Wildlife by Fiona Wood
The Sky so Heavy by Claire Zorn


Younger Readers

Violet Mackerel’s Possible Friend by Anna Branford. Illustrated by Sarah Davis
Song for a Scarlet Runner by Julie Hunt
City of Orphans: A Very Unusual Pursuit by Catherine Jinks
My Life as an Alphabet by Barry Jonsberg
Light Horse Boy by Dianne Wolfer. Illustrated by Brian Simmonds


Early Childhood

I’m a Dirty Dinosaur by Janeen Brian. Illustrated by Ann James
Baby Bedtime by Mem Fox. Illustrated by Emma Quay
Banjo and Ruby Red by Libby Gleeson. Illustrated by Freya Blackwood
Kissed by the Moon by Alison Lester
The Swap by Jan Ormerod. Illustrated by Andrew Joyner
Granny Grommet and Me by Dianne Wolfer. Illustrated by Karen Blair


Picture Book of the Year

The Treasure Box by Freya Blackwood. Text by Margaret Wild
King Pig by Nick Bland
Silver Buttons by Bob Graham
Parachute by Matt Ottley. Text by Danny Parker
The Windy Farm by Craig Smith. Text by Doug MacLeod
Rules of Summer by Shaun Tan


Eve Pownall Award for Information Books

Jandamarra by Mark Greenwood. Illustrated by Terry Denton
Jeremy by Christopher Faille. Illustrated by Danny Snell
Ice, Wind, Rock by Peter Gouldthorpe
Yoko’s Diary: The Life of a Young Girl in Hiroshima during WWII ed. by Paul Ham
Meet Captain Cook by Rae Murdie. Illustrated by Chris Nixon
Welcome To My Country by Laklak Burarrwanga and Family


Page 5 of 6« First...23456