Mia Megastar by Ada Nicodemou with Meredith Costain. Illus. by Serena Geddes

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Mia Megastar written by Ada Nicodemou, a well-known Australian actor, is based loosely on her own childhood memories and her dreams of becoming a star. In this first book of a new series for primary-school aged readers, it is perfectly obvious right from the beginning that eleven year old Mia loves performing. She has a natural talent and is forever sharing her acting performances with her large extended Greek family.

Living above a shop filled with yummy Greek pastries as well as the more mundane everyday items, Mia exudes joy and passion for life. She is always on the go with best friends Ted and Brina, and after seeing a live theatre production Mia decides that they will create a drama club. With a little support from Mr J, the school drama teacher, Mia along with Ted and Brina audition students and form the Summerdale Stage Stars. While trying to work out what play to write, they settle eventually on improv theatre where a scenario is given and the actors improvise on the spot.

Throughout this story there are numerous illustrations and doodles as well as highlighted key words for emphasis.  The strong characters are relatable and each bring their own special quality to the story. The introduction and discussion of Greek language, food and traditions is a wonderful way to expose readers to another culture. At the end of the book is a Q & A with Ada Nicodemou which is both enlightening and worth sharing with children.

Book 2 is out in June 2024 and Book 3 in October 2024.

Themes: Drama/Acting, Friendship, Family, Greek Traditions, School, Improv Theatre, Diversity.

Kathryn Beilby