Thursday 14 October 2021

Sass and Traz Save the Library

Sass and Traz Save the Library by Michelle Worthington & Naomi Greaves (Daisy Lane Publishing) PB MG RRP $12.99 ISBN 978 0 648819356

Reviewed by Karen Hendriks

Sass and Traz discover that their beloved library is going to be demolished for a carpark. Mrs Burns the librarian says that there is nothing she can do about it. But the library has other ideas. It finds a way to get Sass and Traz and Mrs Burns to make discoveries with characters from books to save the library in the most clever and unexpected ways.  The library empowers Sass, Traz and Mrs Burns to act and stand in their own power.


This is award-winning author Michelle Worthington’s first junior fiction, and it ticks all the boxes. Sass and Traz Save the Library, has strong characters, a strong voice and an interesting plot. Most of the action takes place inside the library and the twins are both different as characters yet complimentary to each other. Worthington addresses diversity with Traz being in a wheelchair and each character is distinct and has depth. Sass is a strong female character and Mrs Burns is an adult who is trustworthy and quirky. Traz is a deep thinker who is super smart.


The unexpected twist of the library coming to life to help save itself is believable and imaginative. The sentences flow easily and smoothly for a young junior fiction reader. The sentences are a mix of both long and short sentences that pace the action to the storyline. The saving of the library is topical. Libraries are community spaces that provide not only books for people to read but are a safe place for members of communities to visit. The loss of libraries is being felt and this book brings the spotlight upon this issue. Michelle challenges stereotypical roles with Mum being the footy coach. This is a story that is both engaging and imaginative. The squeal of rusty hinges made her jump as down the middle row, a long drawer threw itself open, revealing a long stack of yellow cards. Then everything was quiet.


Naomi Greaves is an experienced illustrator, and her bright cover is not only eye catching but gives a good indication of what the story is about. Greaves has included small black and white images at the start of each chapter. This not only guides the young reader into each chapter but gives an idea what that chapter will be about. Greaves’ signature style matches this book perfectly.


Sass and Traz Save the Library is the first book in a trilogy that is also being adapted for an animated screen play. This is an added bonus that is sure to inspire young middle grade readers to dive into this clever book. It is a great read for seven years and up and empowers children to believe in themselves.



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