"Each time he awoke from a 'spin,' he knew it would be a totally new and incredible adventure."

This children's book series was born of Moldenhauer's bedtime stories to his children. A child would spin a globe and Moldenhauer would compose a new story based on the country where the child's finger landed. In this story, Frederick von Wigglebottom awakes to find himself in Alice Springs, Australia. Right away, Frederick meets a new friend named George. George is an Aborigine who explains one of the legends of his people. George introduces Frederick to another new friend, Madeline, whose father is a doctor who flies out into the bush to help people. As the new friends take a plane ride to Ayer's Rock, a special mountain, Frederick learns more about the rich cultural heritage of the Aborigines. Before Frederick spins off to a new adventure in another land, he helps young readers increase their cultural awareness and learn that many stereotypes about other cultures are exactly that. Moldenhauer's book is an exciting exploration for youngsters. The author's creativity is surpassed only by his impressive knowledge of indigenous cultures, local legends, and historical gems.

The book introduces youngsters to new lingo, such as tucker, which means food, and walkabout, which refers to a journey. They'll also be excited to read about some new animals such as wallabies and kookaburras. These nuggets of information are woven seamlessly into the storyline; children won't even realize they're learning. The new words may necessitate several re-readings of the book and the writing may be more age-appropriate for kindergarteners and older children, rather than toddlers. However, the author thoughtfully includes a glossary at the end to help young learners (and their parents) master the new vocabulary.


Return to USR Home