Only Two

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It’s 1878 and Eva Carmichael is excited to begin her new life in Australia. Her parents and five of her siblings are with her on board the Loch Ard from London, which after three months at sea is just one day’s sail from Melbourne. But late into that last night, the Loch Ard strikes rocks and sinks and all perish except Eva and a midshipman, Tom Pearce. These teenagers face a gritty struggle for survival on the wreckage-strewn shore of a remote gorge. Yet, after a dramatic rescue by a local farmer, the two young people find they must then tackle grief and growth as overnight they become inspirational but unwilling heroes across Australia and around the world.

Some stories are lost to the ravages of time… this one will not be.

Read Jackie’s latest blog post about Only Two here.


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Emelin Lambert is an eleven-year-old orphan in medieval England. She has an incredible gift that helps her illustrate manuscripts with her uncle. She’s also quick-witted, mouthy, and nearly always in trouble.

One terrible day, her uncle is killed and Emelin ends up being in possession of a manuscript that belongs to Geoffrey Chaucer. She cannot stay in her home with the manuscript so she begins a grim wintery journey to what she hopes will be safety.

Along the way Emelin meets a boy named Wolf who rescues her from a violent thief. Together, Wolf and Emelin flee to Reading Abbey.

The journey makes Wolf deathly ill and Emelin learns that she cannot always depend on others. She will have to fight alone, so she battles the adult world, and she battles fear. She puts her gift to work with the hope that her skills might help her and Wolf survive.

See the Children’s Book Council of Australia review here.

Dust Makers

Purchase from Wombat Books

In this exciting collection of short stories, Penny Jaye and R. A. Stephens challenge Australia’s YA authors to tackle themes of sustainability, caring for the environment, and the legacy we leave for one another. The resulting thirteen stories are a range of historical fiction and dystopian adventure, sci-fi settings and contemporary feels – guaranteed to leave you thinking about the impact of humanity and the difference our actions could make.

Stories include:

Ends and Beginnings by Peter Clarkson

The Aria of the Ocean by Jackie Randall

How to Convert a Kingswood by D.J. Blackmore

Before the Dust Makers by Penny Jaye

Touching the Sky by Rosanne Hawke

Invasion by Simone Field

Terra Firma by Bethea Donoghue

Holding the Spring by Crystal Corocher

A Constant Forgetting by Emily Larkin

The Hive by Jean Saxby

A Paper Legacy by Ebony Frost

Gasp! by Gina Newton

Lost Soul by Geraldine Borella