'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Monday 7 February 2011

Review: Diary of a Wombat

I want to share with you my daughter’s first reactions to this picture book, because although at the age of two she isn’t yet at the target age for the story she showed me why this book has been such a hit.

The illustrations won her first. Right from the very beginning – that is, the cover image – she was in love with this wombat. She wanted to know what would happen with it.
Then as we progressed through the story. Written in quick snippets of a wombat’s day-by-day activities (“Monday. Morning: slept. Afternoon: slept. Evening: ate grass. Scratched. Night: ate grass.” And so on.), she was intrigued as to what would happen.

She watched as the wombat dug holes (“Uh-oh!” she said) and slept in them. She learnt that they love to eat, and that they can be cheeky (lots of laughter at those bits). She discovered that this particular wombat knows how to make humans do whatever she wants.

And at the end, there were calls for it to be read “Again! Again!”

One read and Diary of a Wombat was an instant favourite, as it is with children across the country

This highly acclaimed, award-winning picture book has become Jackie French’s signature piece. Why? It’s a classically charming picture book, a simple storyline, with humour and a loveable character.

More than that, it just has that elusive ingredient that makes it just… work. It’s great and that’s just the way it is.

After all, there’s no arguing with an audience of children.

Title: Diary of a Wombat
Author: Jackie French
Illustrator: Bruce Whatley
Publisher: HarperCollins, $14.99
Publication Date: 2007
Format: Board Book
ISBN: 9780732286620
For ages: 3+
Type: Picture book