Too Many Friends (VN)


I wish all my friends
would ALL be

Tahnee’s friends are like a jumbo pack of assorted party lollies. They’re all different and she likes them all.

But sometimes when you have too many friends, being a good friend to everyone isn’t that easy.

A delightful verse novel about the innocence, joy and heartache of schoolyard friendships.

2018 CBCA Book of the Year, Younger Readers: Notable Book.


RRP $14.95

Too Many Friends is published by UQP.
Download Teachers’ Notes (I cannot say enough good things about these.)
Pinterest: Show-themed party ideas (including ferris wheel cake).
Pinterest: Push & pull toys – and other craft ideas.

REVIEWS  (Click on the links to read the full review.)

  • Lamont Books: “This is a delightful verse novel, with a very positive feel, that many younger students will thoroughly relate to.”
  • Be a Fun Mum: “A delightful book to both read aloud to children and to encourage independent reading … about managing relationships, accepting new people, and kindness; these are relevant topics for everyone.”
  • Gleebooks: “A finely nuanced story that gently reminds us of the positive effects of openhearted kindness and compassion. A welcome addition to our Australian fiction, it is credible and uplifting with nary a trace of didacticism.”
  • Today’s Little Ditty (American review): “I can so easily see this book being read aloud in the classroom to help navigate playground dramas, learn what it means to be a good friend, and discover how to get along with others regardless of whether or not they are friends.”
  • Live Your Poem (American review): “Tahnee comes up with a course of action that is inspiring! Her kindness creates ripples that transform this community of friends.”
  • Children’s Books Daily: “Warm, funny and insightful, it explores all the complex intricacies of schoolyard friendships. There are so many ‘quotable quotes’ throughout that I’d love to plaster across the walls of classrooms.”
  • 612ABC Radio Bookworms (Megan Daley): “Kat Apel just does the most outstanding job of verse novels. It’s absolutely beautiful and eminently suitable right through the primary school. The whole book is a series of quotes about the importance of friendship.”
  • DeeScribe Writing: “As well as introducing common dilemmas for kids, ‘Too Many Friends’ introduces a whole range of fabulous classroom activities for teachers both within the book, and inspired by it. Lyrical and sensitive. A beautifully crafted story that will warm your heart.”
  • Goodreads Review: “A super fun read. A lovely, real tale of friendships in the classroom.”
  • Book Curator: “A sweet story told in verse from the perspective of a little girl with a kind heart who sees what others often don’t, and does what she can to make the world a little brighter. Suitable class novel.”
  • Kids’ Book Review: “Another stunning read. Kathryn Apel has mastered the art of word selection and uses dialogue sparsely to successfully sculpt images and capture emotions.”
  • ReadPlus: “Recommended. Kathryn Apel lets her protagonists work through their problems… Tahnee’s solution is both inventive and kind… This novel would be a great read aloud and discussion point for classes. Apel’s prose flows beautifully.”
  • Boomerang Books (Dimity Powell): “Apel reaches deep into the playground psyche of Grade 2s and extracts genuine emotion with the feather touch of verse. Too Many Friends positively celebrates mindfulness and friendship for lower primary aged readers, demonstrating the power and beauty of these two concepts through the discerning use of verse. Highly recommended.”
  • Momo: “I rarely give ratings but I give this book five stars out of five. Tahnee has lots of friends and enjoys school but she is also keenly aware of the different personalities in her class and is especially sensitive to the feelings of outsiders like Lucy. You will read about class relationships, projects, team work and a wonderful whole class writing idea.”
  • CBCA Reading Time (Rachel Le Rossignol): “There is an effervescence in the writing that makes it a joy to read. It allows for exploration of ideas around force and motion, and sustainability, as well as teamwork and valuing the contributions of everyone in the group. Tahnee is a great role model for how to be a good friend in a book that offers a celebration of friendship.”
  • Aussie Reviews (Sally Murphy): “A delightful, warm-hearted verse novel about friendship. This is Kat Apel’s third verse novel, and shows the same tender touch as her previous work. Lovely.”
  • Tanya Gretchen Welden (Goodreads): “Apel draws her readers into the world of the playground… where harsh words are often spoken and hearts are broken. Too Many Friends captures the purity of our first friendships that are, so often, tarnished with bullying.”
  • Laura Purdie Salas (American Review): “Tahnee’s struggles feel real, and I was rooting for her to solve things – which she does, in a realistic manner. Great insight into the friendship issues kids face, and I love that a group project is part of the crucible for these issues… It never feels sappy, thanks to the humor, the dialog, and the imperfections of all involved.”
  • kidlitcove_:  “An utterly charming book written in verse about friendship in Year 2. Apel captures the personalities, emotions and friendship wars of this age group perfectly.”


UQP Media Release. CLICK to see fullsize image.