A bookshop that’s a ‘Barbie-free zone’

This Saturday (11 August) is National Bookshop Day, a day to celebrate bookshops’ important place in our communities. What would we do without them?!

To celebrate, we’re focusing this week on some of the bookshops local to Wilkins Farago’s own community in Melbourne’s inner south.

Today, we’re visiting Readings St Kilda. Situated in trendy beachside Acland Street at the southern end of the Number 96 tram route, Readings St Kilda (formerly Cosmos) is one of six Readings outlets across Melbourne, and is a spacious browsers’ paradise, especially if you find yourself in St Kilda in the evening (it closes at 10pm). This month, the Readings group chose our new title Empty Fridge as its Kids Book of the Month.

Kids’ storytime at Readings St Kilda is on every Thursdays at 10.30am.

Readings St Kilda has a great children’s book section, looked after by children’s and young adult books specialist, Angela Crocombe. We asked Angela to explain her approach to kids books:

I have a display table which I like to rotate regularly with new, gorgeous picture books and interesting non-fiction titles. I like to keep quirky, unusual books prominently displayed and keep any branded product to a minimum throughout the store. Readings is definitely a Barbie-free zone!

Good design and good storytelling are paramount. I keep a strong range of classics, which are always popular, as well as a section of indigenous stories. We have quite a few tourists and people sending gifts overseas, so it’s important to have a range of home-grown titles available. Changing stock on display regularly is also necessary to keep it looking fresh.

Storytime [Thursday mornings] is my favourite 30 minutes of the working week. I like to begin with a bit of juggling to get everyone’s attention focused on me.  I love getting my audience interacting with the stories and see which ones they engage with the most. It’s a good lesson in what works. An adult may love a story for very different reasons than a kid and, while there are some great picture books for adults, if a story doesn’t work on its intended audience then it’s not a good book.

You’ll find plenty of Wilkins Farago books at Readings St Kilda, so why not drop by for Thursday morning storytime, or pay them a visit this Saturday for National Bookshop Day? If you can’t make it into the shop, they have a great online bookstore too.

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‘Empty Fridge’ is Readings’ Kids Book of the Month

Readings Kids Book of the Month

New book alert! Our latest kids picture book, Empty Fridge by Gaetan Doremus, is released today. We’re delighted to announce it has been selected by Readings Books Music Film as their Kids Book of the Month for August.

Here it is proudly featured on the front cover of the new Readings Monthly newsletter (right).

Angela Crocombe, children’s book buyer at Readings St Kilda, also reviews the book inside. Here’s an extract from her review:

It’s been a busy day, you haven’t even thought of dinner, and when you look in the fridge it’s empty. What to do? How about visiting the neighbours to see if together you might have enough food to make a meal? That is the simple premise of this delightful picture book set in a busy five-storey apartment block …

This beautiful evocation of modern living and the pleasures of sharing by French author and illustrator Gaetan Doremus was first published in France and won a prominent kids’ choice award there in 2010. It has been lovingly translated and published in English so that now everyone from three-year-olds to adults can enjoy its delectable delights!

  • You can read the full review, and buy the book from Readings’ online store, here. (It’s always better to buy a book from someone who cares.)
  • To view inside the book, click here.

Out today!

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Davide Cali ‘in conversation’ tonight in Melbourne!

Davide Cali signing books at last weekend’s CBCA conference

DAVIDE CALI IS finally in Australia and is already proving a big hit with audiences. His talk at last weekend’s Children’s Book Council of Australia National Conference was followed by a marathon 90-minute signing session.

Now, it’s Melbourne’s turn to meet him, as he makes two appearances today at Readings Bookshop, 309 Lygon Street, Carlton. There are two FREE events:

A unique signed copy

Join us for a glass of Italian wine (or OJ) and meet one of Europe’s top kids’ authors in a convivial atmosphere. Both events are free. Davide will also be available to sign copies of his books (as you can see on the right, a signed Davide Cali book is a thing to behold).

Readings has posted Cali’s thoughts on all his English language books on their website here.

Cali is on his first ever tour of Australia (for complete details, click here.)