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TyennaWhat teachers and librarians are saying about Tyenna


'This is the latest in this series that offers fictionalised accounts of world events that help our older, independent readers not only understand what happened but allows them to process it. By giving each story a central character such as Lyla who endured the devastating Christchurch earthquake in 2011, the story becomes one of courage, resilience and hope rather than an historical recount with meaningless facts and figures. It offers the ‘colour and detail’ to the stark monochrome sketches of news reports, websites and other information-only sources.

Like its predecessors, Tyenna is a well-written, well-researched blend of imagination and information that above all, tells a story of one girl's experience -sadly one similar to that of so many of our students who faced that dreadful Black Summer of 2019-2020 when the whole of the east coast of the country seem to be alight - and shows that it is OK to have been scared and fearful, but that natural human resilience can prevail. The first to focus on an Australian disaster (it will be joined by Mia later this year), it will resonate with many in one way or another and thus, if you have a system that places trigger warnings in your books, this may be one to consider.

While we would all like to protect our kids from the disasters of modern times, natural or otherwise, that can be an impossible task as the world now comes to them in the palm of their hands, but stories like this can offer insight, understanding and a feeling that they too, have come through the other side - often shaped by it but also more resilient and courageous because of it.
Barbara Braxton, Teacher Librarian

My over-riding feeling when I was reading Tyenna was its ring of authenticity to me, an ex-Tasmanian. The descriptions of places, particularly the unique lake country in central Tassie, the characters and their dialogue took me back in memory and struck a chord.

I think that this book achieves what it sets out to do, that is to act as a vehicle to bring the message of diminishing environments, climate change and increasingly violent natural disasters and their effect on our unique wildlife. Issues around family relationships, the learning of resilience strategies and problem solving, family relationships and human behaviour are explored. The authors use their writing craft to reflect their strongly-held values and concerns.

I would recommend this book for children from about year 5 through secondary levels because it is pertinent to what is causing anxiety amongst this cohort. Adults will also find it a good read. I applaud your term “Through my eyes’. The unwavering expression on Tye’s face especially in her eyes, on the cover, challenges us to ignore or put these issues under the rug at our peril.'
Joan Chamberlin’, Retired Head of English, VIC