The Three Wallabies Gruff

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three wallabies gruff MORRISON, Yvonne (text) Heath McKenzie (illus.) The Three Wallabies Gruff Little Hare, 2013 unpaged $14.95 pbk ISBN 9781742977157 SCIS 1630347

The Three Billy Goats Gruff is a classic European fairy tale about three goats who come across a troll who guards a bridge.  Its rhyming verse is a classic which has spawned many imitators over the years.  This is not an imitation but an Australianised homage to that classic story.  Instead of three billy goats we have a family of wallabies who have decided to move house.  They come across a bridge under which lives not a troll but a Yowie of a nasty temperament.  It has already shown itself to have no tolerance for the other Australian animals in the district, having cut them off from their fresh water supply in the billabong beyond.

The gorgeous illustrations bring this story to life and complement the rhyming prose beautifully.  They are amusing and clever and add to the text rather than simply illustrate it.  Young readers and audiences will have a lot of fun with this picture book.  DM

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