The Chaser’s Andrew Hansen teams up again with Jessica Roberts for the third hilarious adventure in the Bab Sharkey and the Animal Mummies series!

4000 years ago, the Unpharaoh knew another powerful magician, who built a secret cursed chamber inside the Great Pyramid of Giza. She tells Cainus to lure Bab to that chamber, where not even the Pharaoh’s Beard will protect him. Bab finds the secret chamber, only to discover it’s the same cursed void that his dad vanished into some years ago. On its spongy walls are hieroglyphs of hundreds of trapped souls. Bab succumbs to the curse and loses his Beard, while at the same time learning a terrible secret about his family. Can he and the Animal Mummies retrieve the Beard before all of Mumphis is lost?


Andrew Hansen is a comedian, actor and musician, best known as a member of Australian comedy group The Chaser, whose TV shows include Media Circus, The Hamster Wheel, The Chaser’s War On Everything and CNNNN. Andrew’s radio work includes shows on Triple M and he also composed and starred in the musical comedy series and album The Blow Parade. On stage Andrew composed and starred in the musical Dead Caesar, did two national tours with The Chaser and two national tours of two-hander comedy shows with Chris Taylor. In print he wrote for the humorous fortnightly newspaper The Chaser, eleven Chaser Annuals and The Chaser Quarterly. He has contributed short stories to Best Australian Comedy Writing and Journey Through Humour. His debut children’s book, Bab Sharkey and the Animal Mummies: The Weird Beard was released in 2018 by Walker Books Australia.

Jessica Roberts writes, draws and films stories. She has a Bachelor of Visual Arts and Design, and a Foundation Diploma in film studies. Originally from Kyneton, Victoria, Jessica grew up surrounded by an odd collection of pets including dogs, quails, chickens, sheep, goats, rabbits and a donkey. Her stories often involve animals and she uses her childhood memories of growing up in the country as a bank of ideas for storytelling. A trip to Egypt in 2009 inspired the idea for her first book, Bab Sharkey and the Animal Mummies: The Weird Beard, released in 2018 by Walker Books Australia.


Fast-paced, filled with crazy settings, humour, jokes, songs and secrets revealed, this a thrilling junior novel…Jessica Roberts’ black-and-white cartoons add fun and drama, different text styles engage the readers. Little snippets of Egyptian history also make The Spongy Void an exciting, slightly madcap novel for fans of history and humour.


Full of youthful courage, brashness and sometimes foolhardiness, kids will enjoy reading as he gets himself into scrape after scrape and has to find a way to get himself out again, often with the help of his friends… Roberts’ illustrations are lively and comical, perfectly rendered for this type of story and definitely succeed in their task of bringing the world of Bab Sharkey to visual life.It’s an entertaining read, kids in the 8+ age bracket will enjoy the humour, the adventure and the snippets of Egyptology that they will pick up along the way.

CBCA: Reading Time

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