When you’re in primary school, one of the best parts of the day is little lunch (otherwise known as playlunch or recess). This fifteen-minute break- which precedes a few hours of lessons and the longer lunch period- is a chance for kids to let off steam in the playground, have a snack and enjoy a quick break from the school curriculum. It can also be the source of lots of drama, as is the case in Danny Katz’s very realistic junior fiction series Little Lunch.
The kids in this series are all relatable, and there’s no doubt that you would have come across their counterparts during your own school years. There’s Battie, the boy who wants to be a brave superhero but is scared of a caterpillar. There’s Manny, the boy who’s always eating and has the biggest play lunch every day. There’s Tamara Noodle, the monkey bars queen, and Rory, who’s always getting into trouble. Debra-Jo Woo is the quiet Asian girl who likes to draw fairies but can be vicious when riled, and Amba is the cool girl who wants to be a singing star. Max and Elsa are twins, and barely anyone can tell them apart, even though Elsa is a girl. Then there’s troublesome Atticus Busby and slightly strange Melanie Applebum. Rounding off the list is Mrs Gonsha, the loveable teacher with the huge, wobbly bum and the inability to cook an edible Pavlova. This motley crew have all sorts of adventures in the playground each day, dealing with all the ‘problems’ that primary-age children face. There are ‘secret’ clubs, lunches that have been left behind the school gates, ‘time-outs’ outside the principal’s office, balls over fences and schoolyard tantrums.
There are six books in the series, each featuring three different stories. The books are illustrated throughout, allowing young readers the opportunity to better visualise the antics of the school children. Kids will be able to relate to the characters, and parents will enjoy the nostalgic feel of the playground tales.
The titles of the books are as follows:
The Monkey Bars
The School Gate
The Old Climbing Tree
The Off-Limits Fence