Since we're doing AO for Phebe at the moment, and she polished off Watership Down in a jiffy, I moved her into a new book.
The Golden One
by Katherine O'Brien
Inside at the first chapter.
"If you like adventure stories, you'll like this one."
The story is based in New Zealand, a close geographical country to Australia.
"Three twelve year olds on holiday near Wellington find a treasure that has been lost for several generations - the Golden One of legend. But that is only the beginning of their adventures, as thieves try to get hold of it. And the antique shop owner's assistant is really nasty, the villian - he's a really good baddie."
At present Phebe is about to start chapter 3.