Hopping weird by Ahn Do
Illus. by Jules Faber. Weirdo book 13. Scholastic, 2019.
(Ages: 7-9) Themes: Kangaroos, Animals - care and health. Step straight into the crazy world of Weir Do and his family as Mum's new job impacts on their home life. She's working as a nurse at the animal hospital and she brings some of the sick animals home. Weir shows Kenny the koala how to chew gum leaves, of course they are toxic and unpleasant tasting and he spits them out! Fun and games happen when they dress the koala in little brother Roger's overalls.
At school, Weir and Bella struggle with their movie-making assignment on friendship. Miss Franklin their teacher wants everyone to make a short movie, but both children can't decide on what to film. Mum's brought home a baby kangaroo for the family to care for and Weir and Sally begin to document Joey's recovery. They capture Joey eating the Fido's food and sleeping in his bed while Grandpa makes a special apron with a pouch for the baby roo to snuggle in. Dad provides plenty of silly jokes while Mum teaches Joey how to survive in the bush.
They even venture into the bush, using the triangle tag tracker to find Joey's mother and return her youngster back to her. Weir and Bella film the search, with a few false starts, finally locating the kangaroo. Back at school they realise the true meaning of friendship, when they share Joey's journey with the class.
Hopping weird is illustrated with Jules Faber's funny cartoons of the joey's antics and the family's responses. Hot pink is the colour focus from the fun lenticular cover to the accents and creative font sizes and styles. Ahn Do's amusing and entertaining story includes plenty of laugh-out-loud moments as well as exploring the theme of friendship. The Weirdo series are just right for beginning chapter books and for reluctant readers. This is another winner for Ahn Do; fans of the Weirdo series will find Hopping weird entertaining.