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Diary of a Wombat by Jackie French
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Diary of a Wombat

by Jackie French

Other authors: Bruce Whatley (Illustrator)

Series: Diary of a Wombat (1)

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6181915,758 (4.39)14

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» See also 14 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 18 (next | show all)
It's not easy to write a page-turner showing an animal's ordinary life, in such a way that it conveys a real sense of the animal's basic characteristics without overly anthropomorphizing it. Even when it's done accurately, books about real animals often lack the kind of story quality that makes a child want to read them again. Jackie French has done it for the wombat, though. In this story, a young wombat discovers new "neighbors" grilling right next to her new dust bath. The neighbors provide much in the way of amusement for her: soft dirt for digging (their flower garden), scratching posts (their outdoor furniture) and a limitless supply of carrots and oats. At the end of the week the wombat decides that "humans are easily trained and make quite good pets," so she digs a hole under the corner of their house to be near them.

Each event is delivered from the wombat's perspective: hence, we see the word "welcome" on a new mat, while she describes a "flat, hairy creature invading my territory" which she destroys, concluding happily, "Neighbors should be pleased." Children will easily recognize this flat, hairy object, and they'll savor the irony that the wombat has actually annoyed her humans, even as she demands a reward.

An introduction to an animal we won't see in the wild outside of Australia, a satisfying story suffused with ironic humor, and an endearing, likable character which retains its animal qualities, all combine for a read-aloud with very wide appeal. I highly recommend it.

It's suitable for elementary ages, and is written in simple enough language that early readers can probably handle it. ( )
  eyelevelbooks | Dec 1, 2014 |
Cute and funny book for students to read and find out about a new animal, the wombat. ( )
  magarcia | Nov 30, 2014 |
It's a difficult job getting humans trained properly, but our wombat heroine is equal to the challenge in this hilarious picture book. With its highly felicitous meeting of text and image, Diary of a Wombat gives the reader a wombat's view of her new neighbors, who provide her with the ideal dust-bath (their picnic area), the perfect place to dig holes (the garden), and plenty of oats and carrots. Jackie French's deadpan narrative, paired with Bruce Whatley's droll illustrations, will have children and adults alike in hysterics. Highly recommended. ( )
1 vote AbigailAdams26 | Jun 17, 2013 |
This book was funny. I liked it for that reason and that reason alone. The wombat's relationship to the humans is so twisted by his own perceptions of the human opinions. I love that. ( )
  matthewbloome | May 19, 2013 |
Adorable and cuddly wombat illustrations complete with flummoxed, annoyed humans and sparse text in the form of a diary. A cute story about humans and animals living together that children and adults alike will love. ( )
  sschreur | Apr 21, 2013 |
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» Add other authors (3 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Jackie Frenchprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Whatley, BruceIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Book description
A wombat's diary reads with entry after entry of calm, quiet, predictable entries about eating, sleeping and scratching. Until! A human family moves into the area! Suddenly the wombat's diary is filled with new entries of new discoveries and of training the humans. Inevitable conflict ensues, but eventually a peaceable truce is worked out. This is a good book for talking about diary-writing and blogging, and for talking about human impact on the animal's habitats.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0618381368, Hardcover)

Wombats are cuddly-looking, slow-moving Australian animals. Their favorite activities are eating, sleeping, and digging holes. Here, in the words of one unusually articulate wombat, is the tongue-in-cheek account of a busy week; eating, sleeping, digging holes . . . and training its new neighbors, a family of humans, to produce treats on demand. This entertaining book, with its brief, humorous text and hilarious illustrations, will endear the wombat to young children, who may recognize in the determined furry creature some qualities that they share.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:39:02 -0400)

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In his diary, a wombat describes his life of eating, sleeping, and getting to know some new human neighbors.

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