Review Blog

Mar 16 2016

Dance, Bilby, dance by Tricia Oktober

cover image

Ford Street, 2016. ISBN 9781925272130
Baby Bilby would love to dance. Everything around him seems to do so, even the ants on the swirling leaves and the bush litter swept up in the willy-willies. Even Bilby's shadow dances. Will he be able to, too? He's doing quite well and delighting in the shapes his shadow makes until a big scary shadow looms over him.
On the surface this is a most charming story beautifully illustrated by one of my favourite illustrators, perfect for preschool with its simple text, colour and movement. But it has the potential to be so much more if the reader starts to explore the concepts of movement, wind patterns and shadows and how they change. The ending also offers scope for discussion.
One of the reasons I love Oktober's illustrations is her eye for detail and these are no exception. Bilby is very appealing yet very realistic while the meticulous detail of the contents of the willy-willy contrast perfectly with the ballet shoes on the emus!
Can't wait to share this with Miss Nearly 5.
Barbara Braxton

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