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WACKO by Ali Durham


by Ali Durham ; illustrated by Ali Durham

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2019
ISBN: 978-1-76036-073-3
Publisher: Starfish Bay

A young mouse shows Grandpa all of the skills he learns and the activities he loves to do throughout the first few years of life.

Grandson and Grandpa spend a lot of time together. From taking his first steps through eating porridge all by himself to learning to swim, the little mouse experiences all of it with his beloved grandfather. He not only shows Grandpa all the things he learns to do, but also all of the activities that bring him joy. Together the two of them dance, read about dinosaurs, and make art. All the while, readers see how proud the young mouse is of all of his accomplishments, and Grandpa reinforces this, telling him how appreciative he is to be present for all of the youngster’s childhood milestones. The title word, considered by many Americans a slur, is defined as “an old Australian expression which describes amazement and delight,” and Grandpa uses it often. Simple but colorful illustrations of these anthropomorphic mice make the book feel light and delightful. The abab rhyme scheme provides a musical element to the story, engaging readers. Typical age and gender assumptions depicted range from Grandpa’s naps and use of a cane to the grandson’s blue clothing and dinosaur books. From Down Under, a celebration of the uniqueness of the child-grandparent relationship. (Picture book. 3-6)