Search Site
This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

The Wonky Donkey by Craig Smith

The Wonky Donkey (edition 2010)

by Craig Smith (Author)

Series: Wonky Donkey (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,592425,793 (4.16)7
Illustrations and lyrical text describe a bird's adventure walking down the road and meeting an odd donkey with three legs and one eye.
Title:The Wonky Donkey
Authors:Craig Smith (Author)
Info:Scholastic Paperbacks (2010), Edition: 1st, 24 pages
Collections:Your library

Work Information

The Wonky Donkey by Craig Smith


Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 7 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 42 (next | show all)
ages 3-7
no awards ( )
  lebirdsong | Apr 25, 2024 |
reading level PreK-k
Award NZ Post Children's Choice award
  jayceyrr | Apr 25, 2024 |
Get ready for some punny, tongue-twisting fun! If you've got a southern accent under your belt (which I do not), this one is even better. There's also a song version of this on YouTube.
  sloth852 | Jan 12, 2024 |
Quite the tongue twister! If you haven't seen the YouTube video of the Scottish grandma reading it to her grandson, go look for it. ( )
  KellyCook | May 12, 2023 |
This originally appeared in Grandpappy's Corner at The Irresponsible Reader.
Lifted from the lyrics of a children's song, the book starts:

I was walking down the road and I saw...
a donkey,
Hee Haw!

And goes on from there to describe this unfortunate equine in more and more detailed (and ridiculous) ways--starting with its three legs, going on to describe its taste in music, coffee consumption, attitude, attractiveness, and so on.

Katz Cowley is fantastic. The natural world and physical objects are presented in a great realistic fashion--heightened just a bit. The titular donkey and a bird that shows up in every scene, however, are a goofy cartoonish exaggeration of that fashion

I don't know who decided to give this donkey a prosthetic leg--but it only comes up in the illustrations, so I'm going to give Cowley credit for it. It's a great detail on many levels.

The expressions on the bird and donkey are the stars of the show--better than the words (by a crooked hair). I don't know how a child can look at them and not want to stare. Or not wanting to pick up the book for another reading session.

Especially when a child is the age of the target audience, the adult reading the book is going to see themselves in the coffee-less expression of the donkey on the page talking about the caffeine deprivation. So everyone wins?

You can see some of the art, and learn more about the book, on Cowley's website.

Ohhh boy. This is going to be hard to convey. First, it was only after I'd read this that I took the time to track down the song, but I couldn't help but get a sing-songy cadence and voice as I read it. I also found myself talking faster and faster as I went through the book--like there was this unconscious effort on my part to spend the same amount of time reading each pair of pages--like a snowball rolling downhill, growing bigger and getting faster. This is great and all, but it's also kind of a workout of both stamina and verbal dexterity.

You can't help having fun with these lines--even as they build up and repeat like the 12 Days of Christmas. Really, try being expressionless or frowny while saying "He was a hanky-panky crank stink-dinky lanky honky-tonky wink wonky donkey." You can't, can you?

You might need to start using a spirometer before cracking this thing open though. As fun as it is, you're going to end up getting requests for encores, and after 2-3 readings in a row, it's going to lose a little bit of its charm. So keep something else around so you can switch to it for a minute or two before having to come back.

(between you and me, the song isn't my style. I really hope the Grandcritter doesn't discover it, because it feels like the kind of thing that'd you'd have to listen to 30 times a day--like that ditty about an infant scaleless predatory fish)

A couple of weeks ago, my wife was telling a friend about our prep work for grandkids, including all the books we're starting to stockpile. Once she got over being aghast that we'd never heard of The Wonky Donkey, she insisted that we fix this. We dutifully complied and it's either one of the best moves we've made or one of the worst (see what I said above about reading it).

Joking aside, this is a great book for the intended age group. I'm going to have to do a deep dive into both the work of Smith and Cowley.

The other thing my wife's friend told us was to get the board book--and she was right again. Parents/Grandparents/Etc. Do NOT get the paperback or hardcover. If the child(ren) doesn't/don't like the book, you'll have spent too much money. If they do like the book (the more likely outcome), they will destroy it. It's going to demand the number of re-re-re-re-reads that anything else won't hold up to it. It's also going to end up being one of those books a kid is going to carry around with them and flip through themselves--a lot. Paperbacks/hardcovers will not survive the gumming, accidental ripping, deliberate ripping, and overall expressions of toddler love that are so destructive.

I can't see where this doesn't become a tongue-tying obsession. The book you know the kid will love, you enjoy (the first few times a day you read it), you end up memorizing without trying to and just hope your lung capacity holds out during. It's fun, it's goofy, and it's the kind of thing you'll look back on in fondness. ( )
  hcnewton | May 12, 2023 |
Showing 1-5 of 42 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review

» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Craig Smithprimary authorall editionscalculated
Cowley, KatzIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed

Belongs to Series

You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
For my mum, and all the people who have helped me over the years: family, friends and mentors. Thank you. Craig Smith
To my precious Mum, Dad and aunt Wren... your love, support and inspiration fuels my creative journey and makes all of me smile and sing. With big-fat gratitude for keeping me tuned to the magic and humour of life. - Katz Cowley
First words
I was walking down the road and I saw a donkey, Hee Haw!
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS
Canonical LCC

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (2)

Illustrations and lyrical text describe a bird's adventure walking down the road and meeting an odd donkey with three legs and one eye.

No library descriptions found.

Book description
Haiku summary

Current Discussions


Popular covers

Quick Links


Average: (4.16)
1 2
2 4
3 18
3.5 7
4 42
4.5 2
5 55

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 208,929,492 books! | Top bar: Always visible