Review Blog

Mar 26 2018

Kookaburras love to laugh by Laura and Philip Bunting

cover image

Omnibus (Scholastic), 2018. ISBN 9781742769660
(Age: 4+) Recommended. Themes: Kookaburras, Australian animals, Humour, Difference. When one kookaburra begins to laugh, the other kookaburras cannot help themselves. They all join in. They laugh when it is rainy and when it is sunny and when it is windy. It is what they do. But one is different. He is the one kooka in the borough who does not join in. He has always been different, and it makes the others a little nervous. Day after day they try to get him to join in: they play jokes, they dress up, they do pranks, but all to no avail, he decides to leave. But in doing so he comes to see that all flocks have their flaws. Some are too quick, some too loud, some are greedy and some are just mean. But when he is about to give up, he finds a groups which seems to suit his purposes. But something is not quite right.
Meanwhile the other kookaburras miss him and decide that when he returns, they will try to be a little more serious, but when he does come back it is he who begins to tell jokes and does some other things which cause laughter. They have all learnt to get along even though they are different.
Readers will cackle and guffaw at the words, and ask that it be read out loud, kooing and kaaing like the kookaburras as it is read to them over again. The wonderful illustrations by Philip Bunting are perfectly suited to the text, showing the kookaburra on each page, a few deft changes altering the mood of each event.
Fran Knight

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