Parents & Teachers
OAG marks the debut of an exciting new collection of ground-breaking books for girls aged 8 and up.
The idea for the series was born when Jane Godwin, Publisher, Books for Children and Young Adults at Penguin, noticed that there seemed to be a lack of "meaty and memorable books" for young girls. "I noticed little girls reading a lot of mass market, tween-oriented material with an emphasis on fashion, make-up and celebrity and that's fine, there's a place for it, but I felt that young female readers deserved something more. I also know that parents are concerned about the impact of 'tween' titles, worried that they're making this generation of girls grow up too quickly."
Jane thought about the books she'd read and loved as a child. "Certain books had stayed with me to this day, like Little House on the Prairie, where there was a strong central female heroine who even if her life was very different to yours, you really identified with her."
Each story in the series is set in a particular era of Australian history, yet reads nothing like a history lesson. All written by highly acclaimed Australian authors, they feature strong plots, colourful and varied characters and terrific heroines.
The first books in the series explore the convict era and colonisation, the goldrush and Federation. But this is just the beginning! Books in the pipeline will include many aspects of Australian history, including more of our indigenous past and the various waves of migration.
The covers are designed to appeal to the young with a logo of a locket and charm bracelet, enduring symbols of girlhood. Inside, an array of emotional experiences awaits the reader with engaging descriptions of life as it once was and suspenseful plots about things such as family, friendship, betrayal, loneliness, standing up for what's right and surviving in a dangerous world.
The set focuses on the fortunes of four likeable young girls: Grace, Letty, Poppy and Rose. Each of their stories begins in a different era and each character has their own series of four books with a distinct voice and personality. It's their stories, their dramas, hopes and dreams that illuminate Australia's past, its rich diversity and the independent spirit that was fundamental to the building of a nation. "It's about what being Australian really means," says Jane.