Review Blog

Jun 14 2013

Enoch the emu by Gordon Winch

cover image

Ill. by Doreen Gristwood. Scholastic Australia, 2013. ISBN 9781742838717.
(Age: 3+) Recommended. Humour. Australian animals. A reissue of a perennial favourite, Enoch the emu was fist published in 1986, and appeared in paperback in 1990, and is now again available to titillate a fresh generation of readers. The tale of Enoch and his long suffering wife, Wilhelmina, is a delight, sure to please young readers with a look into the state of marital bliss.
After a night out with the boys at the Emu Club, Enoch arrives home to find his wife sitting impatiently on their nine eggs. She berates him for not doing his share of the housework and particularly the egg sitting, whereupon, she flounces off leaving him to do the work. Just when he thinks she has returned she announces that she is off on a holiday.
And so he sits, through the dusty heat and driving rain, fending off a dingo with his fierce look, until one day the chicks arrive and make it all worthwhile. The others at the Emu Club are most impressed and decide that sitting on a clutch of eggs is just the thing to do. And emus have done so ever since.
This a glorious book full of fun which will involve all the readers, spurred on by the stunning illustrations. A fascinating topic for discussion in the classroom, the book will elicit all sorts of responses about who does what about the house and in the classroom, about gender alignment and sharing of all types of work. And parents will love returning to a favourite story from their childhood.
Fran Knight

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