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Tommy Bell Bushranger Boy: The Horse Thief

Illustrated by Pat Kan

Included on the South Australian Premier’s Reading Challenge list.An exciting new Australian adventure series full of danger, daring and wild colonial boys!

Tommy Bell, Bushranger Boy is a wonderful new series featuring Tommy’s time travelling escapades that take him face-to-face with some of Australia’s most notorious bushrangers.

The hero of the series, Tommy Bell, lives in regional NSW in contemporary times but is able to travel back in time to the gold rush days by wearing an old bushranger’s hat that he discovered on his grandfather’s farm.

Tommy and his friends find themselves up close and personal with one of Australia’s well known outlaws. With each adventure there is plenty of danger and excitement: armed hold-ups, sieges, frauds, shoot-outs, police chases, jail-time and much more.

Each book cleverly incorporates a parallel story from Tommy’s twenty-first century life that tests his friendships and develops his character.

Book 2 – The Horse Thief
Tommy Bell is happy when the popular new kid at school wants him to join his gang. His new friend is trouble but he’s not half as much trouble as the bushranger that Tommy meets when his magic hat takes him back to the gold rush days. Tommy finds himself in the middle of a horse robbery, a police chase and a prison escape!

Author and librarian Jane Smith has a passion for Australian history and bushrangers in particular. With thirteen books on the subject published since 2014, and with titles receiving award nominations in the ABIA and CBCA awards and glowing reviews nationally it appears that Jane’s fascination with Australian history is shared by children, parents and teachers alike!

In 2015 Captain Thunderbolt from her much loved Australian Bushranger series was shortlisted in the 2015 ABIA Awards. Shoot-out from the Rock the first in her new series, Tommy Bell Bushranger Boy, followed suit as a 2017 CBCA Book of the Year notable. The books teach younger readers about the colourful lives of our bushranging legends and the times they lived in. Her meticulous research offers an insight that goes beyond the surface into the personalities of her ‘characters’ and debunks a few well-known myths and ‘facts’ along the way.

Jane’s clever and entertaining series has been written with not only a flare for fun and reader engagement but also with the Australian National Curriculum in mind. The seventh book in the Tommy Bell series was released in February 2019.

Pat Kan is a talented and versatile artist, illustrator and graphic designer. He has illustrated several children’s books including The Australian Bushranger series and the Tommy Bell Bushranger series as well picture books: There’s a Koa

More books from this author: Jane Smith

More books from this illustrator: Pat Kan

More books in this series: Tommy Bell Bushranger Boy