Hey cHEwY gum gums

Part 2 of my Year Review, last week I looked at my favourite Games, Music and Movies of 2018

Now let’s move onto some of my favourite reads…

Books

How to Bee by Bren MacDibble

I was invited to speak at this year’s AAA event for the CBCA, predicting the shortlist and eventual winner in the Younger Readers category. I got it right with the winner haha. How to Bee is a sensational dystopia with a heartwarming story about family and belonging squeezed in between. It’s the subtle clues about this future that really make this buzz, a future where bees don’t exist anymore, and it’s left to kids like Peony to actually pollinate the trees. I love Peony’s voice, it’s distinct, rural and rough. Bee-autiful book!

Bab Sharkley and the Animal Mummies: The Weird Beard by Andrew Hansen and Jess Roberts

I first met the writer-illustrator duo back at this year’s Sydney Writers Festival family day, mainly because I was an old-school Chaser fan (so I did fanboy a little haha). Then I picked up his first foray into children’s books and wowee, what an eccentric mix of Ancient History with reluctant hero humour. The supporting cast of mummified animals deliver some zingers and it builds up to an excellent start to what should be a fab series. Plus it has a place called dustburgers haha. Jess adds some amusing pictures too, so if you’re looking for an adventure comedy book, this should be your jam!

Poppa Platoon books 1 and 2: World War Chew and Operation Dessert Storm by Danny Katz and Mitch Vane

Confession time: I love Danny Katz. I loved his underrated series, S.C.U.M. And I love how he teamed up with his ‘Little Lunch’ buddy Mitch Vane to deliver another slice of an ordinary life in Poppa Platoon. I love situational comedy and to deliver a book about the crush that is ‘buying showbags at the Royal Easter Show/Ecka etc’ is simply comedy gold. Katz has a knack to milk a normal scenario and add his own spice to it, and in this case, add some grandparents’ wisdom and charm. The follow up is about the all you can eat buffet is yet another book where I wish I wrote too hehe.

Burgers

I had another 120 burgers in 2018, most of them were awesome (check out my instagram and follow my burgergram journey plug plug plug)

Super Duper Burgers in San Francisco

I went to California for 3 weeks and I smashed 14 burgers. Yes, In and Out was da bomb! But my favourite burger was one of the last I had in the US, Super Duper had a crisp, clean taste with a juicy patty that delivered the flavour with each bite.

Burger Singh in Delhi

If you can’t stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen! Never mind the fact that it was hot outside, I went for their hottest burger and boy, did it lay on the spice! Juicy plump chicken patties sealed the deal. Burger Singh is the fastest growing burger chain in India and I hope it comes here one day hehe.

That Burger Joint in St Kilda

Best burger I’ve had in Oz goes to this joint, an absolute banger of a burger, with a sauce to die for. It may look simple but I think it’s one of the juiciest patties I’ve ever had. Need to go back and try their double-patty beasts hehe

Next week, I wrap up the year with some highlights of my writing and cHEwY journey

O.W

About the author

I'm an author, stand-up comedian and teacher. My books include Thai-riffic!, Con-nerd, Punchlines and The Other Christy. I'm a massive Nintendo fan and love eating burgers. Follow me on Twitter or Instagram @oliverwinfree