> Skip to content

Article  •  6 January 2021

 

Why Renée Treml’s picture books should be on every Aussie bookshelf

One art form that has always celebrated Australiana is picture books.

One art form that has always celebrated Australiana is picture books.

From Koala Lou to Are We There Yet?, our great country has been depicted in literary form for decades now. As the years continue to chug along, we see more and more incredible talent enter the world of picture books, and one such author/illustrator is Renée Treml.

Inspired by Australia’s natural landscape and a background in ecology, Renée Treml creates gorgeous picture books featuring Australian animals. She’s originally from the USA, but has called Australia home for over a decade now, and has quickly become a must-read author with numerous awards under her belt. Whether they feature a kangaroo or a koala, a platypup or a puggle, little ones will love discovering new Australian animals within Treml’s work.

Keep reading to discover why we love Renée and her books so much, and why they should be on your bookshelf – no questions asked! 

 

Celebrating Australian fauna and flora

A recurring theme in Renée’s picture books is the majesty of Australian fauna and flora. Each of her books, including the upcoming Let’s Go, Little Roo (January 2021), celebrates different Australian animals, including kangaroos, wombats and platypi. Plus, native Australian plants appear in many scenes in Renée’s books, tying everything together beautifully.

Not only do Renée’s books champion everything Australian, but they also help familiarise young readers with our natural landscape, teaching them to appreciate all that our country has to offer.

 

Gorgeous, detailed illustrations

One thing that may stand out to new fans of Renée Treml’s work is how her illustrations expertly toe the line between simple and intricate. Detailed sketches of Australian animals in shades of grey are juxtaposed with brightly coloured backgrounds and simple additions to the scene, such as clouds, plants and butterflies. Little ones will love the animated expressions of each character, and will find joy in spotting things in the background of each page.

Although all of Renée’s books are equally as beautiful, one we love for its illustrations is The Great Garden Mystery, which not only features Aussie animals, but cute clues interspersed throughout that will help readers catch the beetroot thief before they strike again!

 

Big themes in little packages

Renée’s books also manage to tackle big themes in understated little packages. Let’s Go, Little Roo! explores friendship and what goes into making new friends, especially if you’re shy or apprehensive. Little Roo is scared to leave mummy’s pouch, where it’s warm, safe and familiar. But, Little Roo also longs to make friends – she’s just a little scared, and isn’t sure how to overcome it. This story delicately touches on feelings of shyness, fear and discomfort but ultimately ends in a jubilant way when Little Roo finds a new friend in Little Wallaby, and discovers that together they can learn to be brave and have lots of fun along the way.

 

Learning counting, colours and more

Renée’s books are the perfect gift for young ones as they first begin to explore the world of books – especially as they encourage new skills like counting and recognising colours!

Learn to count to ten as gorgeous Aussie animals frolic in books like Ten Sleepy Sheep and Ten Little Owls. On each page of Ten Sleepy Sheep we see a new animal drifting off into slumber – from foals to chicks, lizards and even parrots! One by one, an animal drops off each page, until we have one little joey making his way back to mum’s pouch for the night. 

2020’s Roo Knows Blue is another gorgeous book from Renée with an educational element. It follows an adorable little roo as they discover all of the colours of the rainbow, and where they can find those colours in nature! It’s perfect for gently encouraging new topics with your little reader.

 

Perfect bedtime reads

Finally, we can’t go past Renée’s gorgeous, soft prose when it comes to bedtime stories. The perfect length for young ones aged 12 months to 3 years, her books act as a great wind-down before sleep. Try One Very Tired Wombat to coax little ones off to bed – in this cheeky story, all Wombat wants to do is get some shut-eye, but he can’t seem to escape the noisy birds!

Or, maybe your littlies are scared of the dark – it’s nothing to be ashamed of! Renée expertly addresses this very common problem in Sleep Tight, Platypup, about a baby platypus who is frightened by the shadows and noises that night-time brings. Thankfully, by the end of this story, Platypup is no longer scared and is ready for a satisfying slumber – hopefully your kids will agree!

Let us know – will you be adding a Renée Treml book to your little one’s reading repertoire? If you’re not sure where to start, why not check out Let’s Go, Little Roo!, out now in your local bookstore.


Let's Go, Little Roo! Renee Treml

Favourite Australian picture book creator Renée Treml is back with this gentle, comforting story of a shy kangaroo joey.

Buy now
Buy now

Roo Knows Blue Renee Treml

A joyous celebration of colour in the Australian bush from bestselling author-illustrator Renee Treml.

Buy now
Buy now

Ten Little Owls Renee Treml

Nine little dingos howl at the moon . . . Ten little owls hoot a goodnight tune.

Buy now
Buy now

Ten Sleepy Sheep Renee Treml

Ten sleepy sheep walk back to the shed … 9 sleepy pups settle in bed …

Buy now
Buy now

The Great Garden Mystery Renee Treml

Someone is stealing the beetroots, who could that somebody be? Join us in the garden and we’ll unravel this mystery.

Buy now
Buy now

One Very Tired Wombat Renee Treml

A delightful counting book featuring some very cheeky Australian animals and lots of humour.

Buy now
Buy now

Sleep Tight, Platypup Renee Treml

A cosy story for anyone who's still just a little bit afraid of the dark. Featuring author-illustrator Renée Treml's comforting storytelling and delicate illustrations of Australian native animals.

Buy now
Buy now

More features

See all
Article
Let's read a story together

Picture books read aloud by Matt Preston, Zoë Foster Blake and more!

Article
Let us tell you a story

Australian authors and personalities read some of our favourite picture books.

Activity
Easy activities for kids at home

Keep the kids entertained with these fun book-related ideas. There's an activity book for every age: one for littlies, one for kids and one for grown-ups too!

Activity
Puffinalia for educators

Celebrating 80 years of Puffin!

Activity
Roo Knows Blue activity pack

Learn about colours with Little Roo in the Aussie outback!

Activity
Sleep Tight, Platypup activity pack

A cosy activity for anyone who's still just a little bit afraid of the dark

Article
Cooper Not Out: An interview with Justin Smith and Matt Day

Cooper Not Out author Justin Smith chats to audiobook narrator Matt Day about his delightfully uplifting Australian novel.

Article
5 books to achieve your 2022 health goals

These books debunk diet myths and teach you how to eat well for happiness and health.

Article
5 books to help with your new year's resolution

Do you want to save money or change a habit? We have five books that will empower you to achieve your goals in 2022.

Article
Australia’s Top 10 Books for Kids in 2021

The most popular books of the year, written by Australian authors.

Article
Author reveals process behind new Friday Barnes book cover

The author of the much-loved series offers a behind-the-scenes look at how she creates her eye-catching book covers.

Article
The simple three-step process for letting go of shame

The Resilience Project co-founder reveals a different side in his new no-holds-barred book tackling feelings of shame.

Looking for more articles?

See all articles