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By Lia Spencer

Most children, at one time or another, wish that they could fly.
This childhood dream inspired author Lydia Di Giulio to write a new book which to be released later this year.
Twenty years ago, the Balwyn North resident told her husband’s four-year-old nephew Christian that she wanted to write a book for him and he told her it should be about a flying desk. This year, Lydia and her 12-year-old daughter Bridget brought that idea to fruition.
“The Flying Desk a-z” is the signature book in a collection published by The Flying Desk, which was founded in 2015. The book has been specifically designed to help young children learn the letters of the alphabet in a fun and engaging manner.
It is suitable for pre-school to junior primary school-aged children.
“Basically, the book is about a little boy named Christian who embarks on a journey of discovery and adventure where he searches both land and sea for all the missing letters of the alphabet,” Lydia said. “One of the unique features of the book is that as Christian is searching for each particular letter of the alphabet, he encounters many different objects and an array of situations, along the way, that begin with that particular letter. The beautiful semi-realistic illustrations in this book complement each of these and help define their meaning.”
The first two books of The Flying Desk collection have already been published and have received great feedback.
“Where is Daisy?” is a picture story book about a little grey bantam hen named Daisy who lives on a farm with lots of other animals. Her special mission in life is to raise a family of her own but the farmer has other ideas.
“The Crystal Castle” is a picture story book about stranger danger and its consequences. Despite his mother’s warnings about stranger danger and wandering off from home, Orion is lured away by a golden pigeon where he meets a beautiful fairy who has a hidden secret. Consequently, Orion finds himself in real trouble.
Lydia said The Flying Desk collection of books were written to encourage a love of books and of reading in children. Each book published is designed to be as exciting and interesting as possible to engage the reader. The collection of books were written in a style which mimics reality and are the kind of books that grandparents would appreciate and enjoy reading with their grandchildren.
“When my son was a pre-schooler, I wanted to introduce him to the alphabet in the hope that he would already be familiar with all of the letters before he started school. I showed him the standard alphabet books whereby, ‘A is for apple, B is for banana,’ etc. He got up and walked off. To him, these types of books were boring, and he was totally disinterested in learning the alphabet,” she said.
“So I thought that if I was able to write a book with a really exciting story line, this would entice my son and other children to be more interested in learning the letters of the alphabet.”
Comprising 288 illustrated pages, The Flying Desk a-z has been structured in such a way that it can be put away for another day without interrupting the flow of the story. It also has a ribbon attached so that the reader will not lose their place!
Anyone wanting to purchase “Where is Daisy?” and “The Crystal Castle” can do so from or in store from hipkids at Deepdene or at the Bank of Melbourne in Kew.
Readers are welcome to register their interest for “The Flying Desk a-z” on the website. It is expected to be released before Christmas.

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