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Cover for Upside-Down Friday

Upside-Down Friday

Lana Spasevski, Nicky Johnston (Illustrator)


List Price: 18.99*
* Individual store prices may vary.


Hugo the monkey doesn’t like Upside-Down Fridays. The day is the wrong way round; lunchtime is at morning teatime, and all his classmates’ smiles look like frowns. How will Hugo learn to tame the butterflies in his tummy and find the fun to be had in change?

Upside-Down Friday tells the story of the day Hugo embraces the unexpected. Walking to school, anxious thoughts swirl in his head. When he arrives, the day and his routine are as upside-down as he had feared. However, Maddie the giraffe knows how to help, and reassures Hugo that things won’t always be this scary. With this small gesture of friendship and understanding, Hugo begins to feel braver, reflecting how making new friendships, helping others, and accepting change can help reduce childhood anxiety and build resilience.

With its universal animal-kingdom setting, the story has likable characters who will resonate with all pre-schoolers and lower primary-aged school children who feel nervous about change. The emotive language and unique ‘upside-down’ illustrations make Upside-Down Friday relatable, immersive and accessible; an excellent resource for opening the conversation about anxiety and teaching strategies to cope with it.

Young children’s lives are full of big, scary changes like going to school and making new friends. Help them to build emotional resilience, and find the fun in days that don’t go to plan!

Praise For Upside-Down Friday

We all need a plan to deal with a bad day. Hugo hates upside-down Fridays but with friends, he finds a way to cope. Very appealing illustrations with a gentle palette.—Pinerolo

“For those who can adapt easily to change, it is often difficult to understand the anxiety of those who can’t, so as well as supporting the routine-dependent by acknowledging their problem, this gentle story helps the others understand.”—The Bottom Shelf

... a beautiful story with cheeky watercolour illustrations … based around building emotional resilience by facing the ‘butterflies in your stomach’ Hugo learns that even though sometimes things are different and a little bit scary, once you try, somehow everything comes out right side up.—Blue Wolf Reviews

As a former teacher and parent, I really appreciated a common childhood anxiety being covered in this cute story about facing fears and building resilience.—Love Four Learning

There are so many parents who will be able to relate to this delightful book.—Can You Tell Me A Story

a wonderful book for both parents and teachers to explore adapting to change—Buzz Words

The stunning illustrations by the talented Nicki Johnston make the story float. Her perfect choice of delicate colours and the use of animals as characters, adorn the pages with expressive images, whether upside-down or right-side-up.—Kids’ Book Review

This is a clever book about how school timetables are all over the place on Fridays and how this can be hard for little ones who like routine.—Creative Day

This newcomer from EK Books is SO totally relatable; who among us hasn't felt a touch of anxiety or angst when we're knocked out of our rituals or routines?—Barbara Gruener, Corner on Character

The characters are likeable with Hugo’s emotions being relatable to young listeners alongside the illustrations, which together will support children’s understanding of their emotions and some strategies in coping with change.—Swings and Roundabouts magazine (ECC)

EK Books, 9781925820850, 32pp.

Publication Date: May 4, 2021

About the Author

Lana Spasevski is a children’s author who writes stories that tap into the innately curious world of children. She has a degree in Laws and Commerce and was previously a Senior Paralegal, a Branding Manager and a Marketing Manager with large firms including Nestle and Kimberley-Clark. She now writes for children from her book-filled home where she lives with her husband, her two book butterflies and a rescue kitten called Marbles. Lana’s debut picture book Max’s Dinosaur Feet (2019), illustrated by Penelope Pratley and published by New Frontier Publishing, was inspired by the beautiful chaos of life with a young family. Her writing has achieved recognition in competitions such as Creative Kids Tales, Greenleaf Press and CYA, and was long-listed in the 2018 Children’s Book Council of Australia Charlotte Waring Barton Award as part of the Aspiring Writers Mentorship Award.

Nicky Johnston is an award-winning children’s book author and illustrator. She has several bestselling titles published in Australia and overseas, including At the End of Holyrood Lane, The Fix-It Man, Grandma Forgets, The Incredibly Busy Mind of Bowen Bartholomew Crisp, Saying Goodbye to Barkley, This is My Dad and Upside-Down Friday, all published by EK Books. Nicky’s illustration style is often described as whimsical, playful, narrative, emotive and colourful. She loves to work in watercolour, ink, pencils and pastel. As a primary teacher and acclaimed presenter, Nicky’s love of books sees her thoroughly enjoy taking illustrator workshops and visiting schools regularly. She is passionate about inspiring young children with a love for reading, writing and drawing, encouraging them to use their imagination and develop their own ideas. Nicky lives by the beach with her husband and four sons.