Wombat Books Blog

Wombat Books blog is the place to keep up to date with all the goings-on in the world of Aussie kid's books.

The Ordinary Becomes the Extraordinary

The Ordinary Becomes the Extraordinary

‘And what’s to stop me killing you all?’ The frost giant took a step back and sneered. ‘All I see is a dwarf, a pony and seven children, none of whom is even remotely capable of resisting the might of Uller Princekiller.’ 

Forget magical sorcerers and superhero powers, ordinary and average children are the saviours in this new fantasy. 

‘I wanted to write a fantasy adventure about ordinary children who don’t have any special powers,’ said author, Anne Hamilton. ‘Kids who don’t wield magic and can’t whip up a spell to get them out of trouble. Children who feel as awkward and left out as the average kid does today.’

For centuries, the people of Auberon have awaited the coming of ‘the Days’, the champions of prophecy who will defeat the Armies of Night and stop the rising of the Dark Sleeper. Everyone has been expecting mighty warriors, impossibly wise sages or artful magicians. No one is expecting seven children. What could seven ordinary children possibly do that no one else can? 

‘Daystar made me want to follow Prince Ansey, Fern and the white fox to save the world,’ said Rosanne Hawke, award-winning author of The Messenger Bird and Shahana: Through My Eyes. ‘Young readers will find wisdom and strength when they join this exciting adventure, written in Anne Hamilton’s inimitable story style with hidden meanings to discover. If you liked Narnia, you will enjoy Daystar.’

Daystar is making ordinary children into extraordinary heroes. 

Anne Hamilton is the multi-award winning author of Many-Coloured Realm and 13 other books. She is a former mathematics teacher who now works for a national radio network. For twenty years she coordinated Camp Narnia, an annual event for upper primary students.

Daystar is available in all good bookstores or online at www.wombatbooks.com.au

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Green Heart of the Forest: Bethloria Book #2

Green Heart of the Forest: Bethloria Book #2

A once in a lifetime adventure!

The first crystal has been found. Six more are scattered throughout the lands and Morgran's power is increasing.

Two brothers and an Elf girl uncover dark secrets that drive them into another perilous land in Book 2 of Lizbeth Klein's Bethloria series, Greenheart of the Forest. After arriving at Syone, the only sanctuary left in Bethloria, the young protagonists discover that it isn't as safe as everyone believes. In fact, they barely survive werewolf-like creatures that breach its walls in order to hunt them down.

"What I love about this series is the thread of mystery which runs through and, I assume, will not be revealed until the very end," writes fellow author, Paula Vince. "Readers are left wondering about the linage of the two brothers and their rightful heritage."

That's because it's a cobwebby tale set in a mystical world where magic rules. Nothing is straightforward; everything is hidden, and dangerous.

Joined by an elemental, the journey takes the trio to an abandoned, underground city infested with giant, flesh-eating arthropods. Escaping that danger, worse awaits when they are captured by an evil tyrant and taken to Wychwyre. Here they face their greatest challenges of faith, loyalty and friendship when they attempt to free the people from the tyrant's rule, return the elemental to her home-tree and seek the second lost crystal.

"Nothing is easy for my heroes," Lizbeth explains. "It's written like that because precious things in life often come with personal struggle and sacrifice. This is a story of overcoming hardships that anchor us to the mundane. It also explores the blossoming of teenage love with all its emotional complexities."

Lizbeth lives in Sydney in the Sutherland Shire with her husband, Malcolm. She spends six days a week tutoring primary and high school students. In between, she's off fighting dragons or inventing far away kingdoms.

Greenheart of the Forest is available in all good book stores or buy online now.

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New Release: The Tae'anaryn and the Wizard's Apprentice

New Release: The Tae'anaryn and the Wizard's Apprentice

"Choice, set free."

The Tae'anaryn and the Wizard's apprentice – an unforgettable adventure.

Kidnapped and tormented by an evil archmage who wants them to learn to harness the power of evil, Kialessa and her part dragon friend Piex must find unexpected allies in their plans for escape. It's not the wicked goblins that worry them, or the troll infested swamp, or even the towering rot dragon that keeps them there, but a simple riddle. Will they ever be able to return to their king and college again?

The Tae'anaryn and the Wizard's Apprentice is a fantasy adventure, by Dr Joe Ireland, about a little girl who is a lot different. She and her best friend find themselves prisoners of a powerful wizard, who promises them freedom if they can best his most challenging riddle: what is evil? With friends and family praying for their freedom, desperate attempts to escape, and finding friends in the most unlikely of places, what will it take to find freedom in a place that embraces evil?

The book is already receiving great feedback from its young readers. Emily, an avid reader said, "Wonderful!" Vanessa, a gifted young reader, proclaimed it, "just as good as the first book, but with dragons!"

Author Dr Joe, a touring science education specialist, designed the book series 'The Tae'anaryn' to align with the ethics and humanities curriculum in Australia. The Wizard's Apprentice is intended to be a 'thinking' book that discusses challenging issues, set at the safe distance of a fantasy setting, and at the same time to be thoroughly engaging.

"This book is not only entertaining, it is helpful," says Dr Joe. "How do you deal with the challenges of being away from friends and family? How do we confront those who have much more power than us, and intend to use it to force us to make choices we don't want? How does one confront a challenging problem such as defining what you consider to be 'evil'?"

Dr Joe has a lifelong passion for philosophy, science, and fantasy, having written several academic papers for the international journals of science education, as well as award winning fantasy for the Dungeons & Dragons Living Greyhawk fantasy campaign setting. Dr Joe lives in Brisbane with his wife and three daughters.

The Tae'anaryn and the Wizard's Apprentice is available in all good bookstores or buy online now.

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Unknown assassins, a new world and forbidden romance = The Verindon Series

Unknown assassins, a new world and forbidden romance = The Verindon Series

The second book in the Verindon fantasy series, The Crown has just been released and you can win a copy!


Subscribe to our blog and leave us a comment with the name you subscribed with below to go into the draw!


“Getting one book published is exciting. Two is way beyond that. And three is out of this world!”

So says author, Lynne Stringer. Lynne’s debut novel, The Heir, was published on 1st June 2013. The first book in the Verindon Trilogy, The Heir covered many bases, combining the young adult, science fiction and romance genres.

Now Lynne is looking forward to the release of the second book in the trilogy, The Crown, which is due out on 1st November.

The Crown follows on from The Heir’s story,” said Lynne. “It takes place about five months after the events in the first book.”

Lynne is looking forward to seeing the reaction The Crown will receive, especially considering the positive response that The Heir received.

The Heir has all five star reviews on Amazon,” she said, “And its rating on Goodreads is 4.31 out of five.”

Friends have also been positive about the book, even those who said that they weren’t into science fiction.

“I had a number of friends who read it just because I wrote it. They didn’t like that genre, but they’ve been amongst the most enthusiastic of all the readers.

“One friend who bought a copy of The Heir came up to me the next time I saw her, grabbed me by the shoulders, and said, ‘Where is The Crown?!’ She’s desperate to see what happens next!”

Lynne’s pleased that her fans won’t have to wait long until the third book in the series is out.

“I know that the people who love The Crown will be dying to get their hands on the last book, The Reign. Fortunately, they only have to wait until May next year. I assure everybody it will be worth the wait!”

Check out the book trailer:

Available from all good bookstores or buy online now. Verindon VIP Book pack also available: includes The Heir, The Crown and a free shirt!

For more information on the Verindon Trilogy visit www.verindon.com

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An interview with Lizbeth Klein

An interview with Lizbeth Klein

Hi, I’m Lizbeth Klein and my dream is to hide away from the world in some cave where I can write in relative peace and quiet. I mostly write YA fantasy but I do enjoy mysteries and sci-fi, too. I live in Sydney with my husband, but I would love a forest change. 

Question 1: What is your favourite part about being an author?

Being able to create amazing worlds, incredible characters and great adventures.

Question 2: What is the hardest part about being an author?

The hardest part about being an author is finding the time to write when I’m not falling asleep at the keyboard. Working a split shift 6 days a week is really difficult. Holidays are precious and I seem to achieve a lot then.

Question 3: What do you do for fun?

Sadly, there’s not much time in between for fun at present, but I do like to grab a takeaway lunch and my poor neglected husband and I go and sit beside the sea. Then we might go for a walk or a drive. Watching a good movie is also fun. 

Question 4: What writing genre do you like to do the most?

The genre I prefer above others is YA fantasy.

Question 5: What do you consider your biggest achievement?

Getting published—finally! It always seemed out of reach, a bit like the moon.

Question 6: What is your favourite time to read?

Probably Sundays when I’m all alone.

Question 7: What book are you reading right now?

Trying to get through The Hobbit again. Really enjoy Tolkein.


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Corruption, secret identities and a world overtaken by magic

Corruption, secret identities and a world overtaken by magic

The first book in the Bethloria fantasy series, Firelight of Heaven has just been released and you can win a copy!

Subscribe to our blog and leave us a comment with the name you subscribed with below to go into the draw!

Firelight of Heaven is the first book in a series of fantasy adventure novels. Two brothers are forced to make a perilous journey over the forbidden mountain. They soon discover that things are eerily different on the other side. It is a gripping story of loss, elusive destinies and painful discoveries. It explores the resilience of the human spirit under intense pressures and how faith underpins their ultimate success.

Firelight of Heaven is a thoroughly mystifying, sinister glimpse into a world overtaken by magic. Nothing is free from its stranglehold. Two brothers share secret identities where the painful truth is buried in their past. This debut novel by Lizbeth Klein explores the terrible consequences of magic.

“There are always some mysterious leads to keep us enthralled,” said author Paula Vince. “One of the mysteries is revealed at the end of this book while others are left dangling, to tantalise us to read the sequels. It begins and ends with exciting events, and the middle sections are fast paced enough to keep us turning the pages too. It’s all really good.”

Check out the Book Trailer:

Firelight of Heaven is available in all good book stores or buy online now.


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