Books by Amanda Tarlau


Books and fictional stories have been a constant source of wonderment, learning and joy for me since my ealiest memories. Some of the most fantastic memories of my childhood have books at their core and I strongly recall particular stories resonating with me at different ages. As well as reading, I also loved picking up a pen and paper and letting my imagination run wild and having fun with rhyming words and prose.


Here are the books which I have written, and have also had the absolute joy of selecting and directing the art process of some really brilliant illustrators who have brought my stories to life. They are available to purchase from or by clicking on the covers below.



Curly Girly

Written by Amanda Tarlau

Illustrated by Laura Hughes

Released November 2014



















Seven-year-old Sophie was one of those girls

who really had more than her fair share of curls.


They bounced and they bobbed in her eyes and her ears

so wooly and wild, they could bring her to tears.


This story was written for all the curly girlies in the world! I come from a family of curlies and know all too well the struggles with wild, wooly hair and the often longed-for straight smooth hair. This is a self-esteem story for children about feeling special and accepting their own style.


Laura's loose and fun art style was just perfect for this story and she really captured the characters of Sophia and Clare as well as adding her own lovely interpretation to the antics the girls get up to.


Here's a review from Caitlin's Happy Heart blog



Dinosaurs on the Loose

Written by Amanda Tarlau

Illustrated by Mark Osberg

Released November 2014




















There's a dinosaur loose in the grocery store!
He's rolling down aisles and shaking the floor.

Dinosaurs run wild, causing chaos all through town in this very funny rhyming tale. Finally, tired and sore in the head, they stumble back home for a very long snooze!


Mark's artworks really captured the spirit of fun and mischievousness of the dinosaurs in this book and it's a firm favourite with all the dino-loving kids I know!


Here's a review from the Children's Book Council of Australia



Conga Dance

Written by Amanda Tarlau

Illustrated by Jane Chapman

Released January 2015

















One by one, Australian animals join the conga line, dancing together until they fall in a tangle at the end!


This story for very young children was the brain-child of Gordon Jackson, the now-retired publisher of Koala Books. I was happy to collaborate on this wonderfully simple and joyful idea and Conga Dance was born.


Jane Chapman (from the UK) is very well known for illustrated children's books and they are always warm, humorous and lively. Conga Dance was a great way for her to try out some new animals from the other side of the world! I really enjoyed being part of this story's development.


Here's a review from the late, great Maurice Saxby - Children's Book Council of Australia



Ten Tricky Dinosaurs

Written by Amanda Tarlau

Illustrated by Karen Mounsey-Smith

Released April 2015





















Ten tricky dinosaurs swinging from a vine,
one let go — wheeeee! — and then there were nine!

This was a fun book to write and to work with Karen on - a fun-loving group of dinosaurs get up to all sorts of tricks and it's a rhyming, counting book too, what's not to like!? A great favourite for 2 to 4 year olds.


Karen's digital artwork is so beautifully rendered, her dinosaurs practically leap off the page! Her attention to detail is wonderful and there are always more to find every time I read it - and have you found all the ladybirds?


The Wishing Boat

Written by Amanda Tarlau

Illustrated by Chris Saunders

Released May 2017














A shiny mountain, silver and grey, surfaces into view

Spouting and leaping SPLASH! Before diving into the blue

This was a story which was inspired by Amanda Dreaming by Barbara Wersba, a book given to me as a child from my grandmother. In it, a child dreams of beautiful, mystical, and fantastical things such as roses that sigh, witches with apples for eyes, and pearl ants fighting on her toes. I was always interested in exploring and recalling the surreal adventures in our dream lives and always hoped to write a story involving these concepts.


Chris Saunder's dreamy and naive art style matched my idea for a story so beautifully and I was very honoured to be able to author and also art direct this magical book.