Peadar is bored with trimming his vast lawn, so buys a hungry goat. This quickly backfires as the goat insatiably clears the garden of everything, eating the clothes on the line and the house carpets and the thatch. Peadar soon realises that there are no shortcuts in life. Each misadventure is delicately captured by Natasha Rimmington’s illustrations. Delightful story, for readers age six and upwards.
The Awesome Book Of Awesomeness, by Adam Frost (Bloomsbury; €8.80) This is a book of weird ‘facts’. The highest wave recorded would top The Empire State Building by 80 metres. Downpours of frogs, spiders, golf-balls, and even pennies are recounted, as is the amount of snot a human swallows daily. Lightning struck park ranger, Roy Sullivan, seven times non-fatally, and, on the eighth strike, while he was hanging out clothes, it narrowly missed him, but struck his wife. Loads for the young, enquiring mind. For readers age eight and up.
Sleep No More, by Aprilynne Pike (Harper Collins; €10.05) Charlotte is an Oracle who has visions of the future. But Oracles shouldn’t try to change the future. Her last, misguided attempt killed her father and paralysed her mother. But during a rampage of grisly killings in her school, she again tries to influence the future, to the horror of her aunt, who is also an Oracle. As Charlotte is regarded as a ‘freak’ at school, she is surprised when a hot student, Linden, takes an interest in her.
Associating with Charlotte could, however, put him in danger. Strangely, she puts her trust in a mysterious individual who has stalked her, and he persuades her to try to reverse the horrific murders, which have rocked the community. Why Oracles exist is not quite clear, but Sleep No More is tense and exciting throughout.
The relationships between Charlotte, her Aunt Sierra, and her now invalided mother are well-drawn, as is the fear that grips the community. For ages 14 and up.