The Hat Parade: extract from Chapter One

This year marks the 10th anniversary of the hugely successful Billie B Brown book series, by Australian author Sally Rippin.

To mark the occasion, Sally has released three new books: The Hat Parade, The Honey Bees and The Grumpy Neighbour. She is giving readers a sneak peek here into The Hat Parade, with an extract from Chapter 1.

Billie really wants to win the school hat parade. She has made lots of amazing hats! But when Billie gets stuck in bed with a horrible cold, will her hat parade plans be ruined?


Billie B Brown has one shoebox, five feathers and three rolls of ribbon.

Can you guess what the B in Billie B Brown stands for?


Jack is Billie's best friend. He lives next door.

Today Jack is helping Billie make funny hats from boxes.

'Look at me!' Billie laughs. She puts a shoebox on her head.

It is covered with feathers and ribbons.

'That is the best hat ever!' Jack laughs.

'You will definitely win with that hat!'

Billie smiles.

On Monday there will be a hat parade at school.

Billie really, really wants to win the prize for Best Hat.

Lola won last year.

This year Billie is sure she can win!

'You should go in the parade too, Jack!' Billie says.

She plops a funny hat on his head and giggles.

'Nah,' says Jack.

His cheeks turn pink.

Billie knows he's too shy to wear a fancy hat.

He is scared the other kids might laugh at him.

Some boys wear hats in the parade. But usually they wear plain old caps.

Or maybe they stick a leaf in their school hats.

None of them wear fancy hats.

Billie thinks they are silly. Fancy hats are obviously the best.

Nobody has ever won Best Hat in a cap!


To help keep kids reading and busy while staying at home during the coronavirus lockdown restrictions, Sally Rippin launched an online activity program. To join in the fun, visit

Read more from Sally Rippin