Review Blog

Dec 20 2016

Emily's Bush Christmas by Jackie French

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Ill. by Bruce Whatley. HarperCollins, 2015. ISBN 9780732286934
It's Christmas Day in Shaggy Gully and all the animals are doing the things they do best - the kangaroos are bouncing, the echidnas are prickly, the emus are peckish, koalas are relaxing and the bats and wombats are just hanging about. The Shaggy Gully chorus are sharing their Christmas carols - the cockatoos and kookaburras are giving it their all while Emily tries to keep in tune with her tuba. Suddenly the ambiance is shattered by a ghastly groan coming up from the creek.
"ooooogggggghhhhhh! I'm mad and I'm mean!
I'm the BUNYIP ooooogggggghhhhhh!."
In response, Emily Emu's tuba echoes the same ghastly sound! The bunyip's moan makes her tuba groan. But Emily decides that everyone, including bunyips, should be happy at Christmas and so she sets about trying to change the bunyip's mood. But no matter what she and her friends do, the bunyip stays mad and mean! Until he discovers Emily's tuba . . .
You just know that a Christmas story from Jackie French and Bruce Whatley is going to be Australian and it's going to be good. And so it is with this tale which is uniquely Australian and which will bring a smile to the face of little ones (and bunyips.) They will love to see what their favourite creatures get up to in the bush on this special day - even Ringo the Dingo is there - as Jackie always weaves a wonderful story that is worth reading over and over, especially if you play them this sound clip  so they can hear the sound of the tuba and why it is so perfect for a bunyip! This team always produces the best - and this is no exception.
Barbara Braxton

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