I don’t recall ever a time I couldn’t read, a love of words led me naturally to a love of books. I grew up in a home full of books and as a pre-teen it seemed only natural to set up a my own library, pasting envelopes and borrowing cards on many of the books (this was the 80s) and handing out library cards to the neighbourhood children who were eager to join my lending library, at least that was my perception.
I was fortunate to be gifted that childhood library and have added onto it extensively. Many of our books are Australian books, a passion of mine since childhood that has only grown with time. As a child I would devour the ‘School Magazines’ which contained excerpts of books written by Australian authors, I would then source the book to read in its entirety and to own. The last decade has seen a surge of Australian publications so my library and passion for Australian books has only continued to grow.
Feeling enormously blessed by our large family library I often lend to local friends and talk extensively about books, recommending which ones would suit their needs, their course of study etc. With friends both locally and online continually asking for book recommendations, and with my brain regularly organising books into categories and sub categories a desire grew that there had to be a way to streamline answering friends’ needs so they weren’t left waiting but could be answered immediately. Initially I began writing book reviews but book reviews are time consuming posts to write and being a home education mum of ten means that reviews doesn’t happen as often as I’d like. Plus I wanted a way in which my friends with a click of a button could have their information immediately and organised in an intuitive manner. There were so many great treasures I wanted to share and not enough time to do so.
Thus finally my long held dream has come to fruition I have an online database! A database entirely devoted to Australian Books. These are predominately living books; engaging picture and chapter books with little non-fiction. I’ve included both in-print, out of print and re-printed titles. With the explosion of excellent new Australian authors and books over the last decade and many childhood favourites and many long term favourites of home educators there are so many books to share! Thus far I’ve entered 800 books!! But there are many more to come, it’s become a little bit of an obsession. If you are a family interested in books or passionate about books we are sure to have something for you.
I’ve organised the database into three main categories: Cultures, Literature and History. Under each category is over a dozen sub-categories.
- Cultures includes our First Nations Peoples (some excellent books there!) and reflect the multicultural identity of Australia.
- Literature includes those childhood favourites of mine, modern titles, graphic novels (an area I know little about) picture books and various Flora and Fauna of Australia, such as birds and the Outback.
- Australian history is my passion though and I’m thrilled to report there is some wonderful Australian history publications of recent years. From the arrival of our First Nation Peoples , to the European discovery of Australia, to the First Fleet and settlement, Gold Rush, the War Years through to Modern History. We have these organised in the menu in chronological order. It just makes it so easy to research titles for your period of study.
The information regarding the books are laid out in a grid table with columns for: authors, illustrators, series, tags, target age and print status. All of these are clickable, to see more by that author, tag etc for that page. If you wish to see all works by the authors, illustrators etc in the database you can find direction to those pages on the body of your landing page. The grid layout also contains a column with a wishlist button so you can quickly save books into a list. One suggestion is you could have your local library catalogue open and be cross saving as you work your way through an area of interest/study.
Be sure to keep checking back as not only will new books be continually added, but we have further plans in developing this resource to assist you in your Home Education endeavours. I have a huge desire to share my passion for and knowledge of books, particularly Australian books with the Home Education community and indeed all book lovers. I invite you to pop on over and have a look, and if you have a request or an area of interest you do not yet see represented, please drop me a line and I’ll do my best to source some books for you, I always love to find a new area of research. And if you have any trouble navigating the site, or need tips on how to search your own local library database I’m more than happy to help, just contact me.