THE COW TRIPPED OVER THE MOON by Tony Wilson and Laura Wood


The Cow Tripped Over the Moon by Tony Wilson and Laura Wood

The countdown is on to National Simultaneous Storytime 2017! In its 17th year, National Simultaneous Storytime is an annual campaign aiming to encourage primary-aged children to read and enjoy books. It is promoted by ALIA: the Australian Library and Information Association.

Libraries, schools and other organisations choosing to take part register for the event and all settle down to read the chosen title at 11am (AEST) on the nominated date during Library and Information Week. Last year’s event saw over half a million children take part in around 3,500 locations across the country.

This year’s chosen title is The Cow Tripped Over the Moon by Tony Wilson and Laura Wood. It’s a hilarious take on the classic nursery rhyme Hey Diddle, Diddle and the events that lead up to the cow’s successful leap over the moon–because, of course, there’s no way our little bovine friend could have cleared that giant celestial orb on her first attempt!

Children of all ages will be able to connect with the text immediately as most are familiar with the original nursery rhyme. With themes of perseverance and persistence, young readers (or listeners!) will benefit from the message that it takes a lot of hard work to make our dreams come true, but anything is possible if we set our minds to it.

For more information about National Simultaneous Storytime and activities relating to The Cow Tripped Over the Moon, visit ALIA’s website.

To listen to a reading by Tony Wilson, visit YouTube.

HOW I LOVE YOU, MUMMY by Anna Pignataro

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY to all the mummies, mums, mummas, grannies, grandmas and nannas out there!

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How I Love You, Mummy by Anna Pignataro

To celebrate, I’d like to share with you Anna Pignataro’s How I Love You, Mummy. I’m a big fan of Pignataro’s books that so beautifully illustrate the parent-child relationship. A favourite when my children were tiny was her book Always, so I was very excited when I came across this title, published in 2014.

In How I Love You, Mummy, we follow a number of Australian baby animals to see how they each physically express their love for their mothers. Little Red Dingo nuzzles Mummy’s nose and Little Sooty Owl nestles beneath Mummy’s feathery wings. My favourite would have to be Baby Possum who cradles Mummy’s face and says, “This is how I love you, Mummy.”

With the only repetition in the story being this special line spoken by each baby animal, little readers will no doubt be joining in and wanting to express their own unique way of showing their love for their mother (or another special someone). Each re-reading could see “Mummy” replaced with the name of whoever is reading the story, allowing the child to also connect with other family members.

As always, Pignataro’s artwork is simple and subtle and beautifully depicts our Australian flora and fauna. 

Suitable for ages 0-5, How I Love You, Mummy will delight readers and is guaranteed to foster the very special bond between parent and child.

MOPOKE by Philip Bunting

Mopoke loves peace and quiet but he is about to find out that you can’t always get what you want.

If you’re after a hilarious read to enjoy with your toddler, then look no further. Mopoke is one of those rare titles that will have you and your child sharing a laugh and having fun with as few words as possible. In fact, there are only about twenty-six different words in the entire book.

Author and illustrator, Philip Bunting, has centred his picture book around the southern boobook, Australia’s smallest and most common species of owl, also known as the mopoke after it’s distinctive call.


Mopoke by Philip Bunting

We are introduced to the character on the first page:

“This is a mopoke.”

After which we are told:

“This is a highpoke.”


“This is a lowpoke.”

As you can imagine, the illustrations work perfectly alongside the text to add an element of fun. As we progress, we see the mopoke in increasingly amusing situations. My personal favourite would have to be the seemingly random appearance of a confused-looking wombat.

On his website, Bunting explains that by using as few words as possible, he intended for the reader to bring their own interpretation to the story and to be creative in their expression. He encourages the reader to “increase intonation, experiment with volume, [and to] play with pauses.” All of this variety in how we use our voices during story-telling adds to and enhances the shared book experience. It’s what makes it fun! And with the repetitive phrases and so very little text, you toddler will be “reading” the book with you in no time. So get creative and have some bookish fun!

Published in February 2017 by Scholastic, Mopoke is a must-have for every young child’s bookshelf.


True Blue Librarian has recently undergone a metamorphosis. Originally created as a way to connect and share ideas between primary school librarians, it is now dedicated to sharing and discussing quality children’s picture books, both the timeless classics and new releases.

If we’re talking timeless classics and sticking to the metamorphosis theme, you can’t get better than Eric Carle’s The Very Hungry Caterpillar.


The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle.

Published in 1969, it has stood the test of time, topping charts as a much-loved children’s picture book. It has been used in classrooms around the world to teach a number of topics, including days of the week, numbers, the concept of healthy eating and life cycles. The die cut holes that show the caterpillar’s mealtime journey is a memorable feature of the book and has fascinated generations of children and will no doubt continue to do so for many years to come.

We have seen many editions of the book published over the years along with a countless number of related products featuring the iconic caterpillar, from board games to dinner sets to stuffed toys, much to the delight of parents the world over who have fond memories of the book from their childhood. Fans can also now be entertained by The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show, an adaptation of four timeless Eric Carle stories featuring 75 puppets, including our favourite caterpillar, and showing in locations throughout the UK, Australia, New Zealand and the United States.

On his website, Carle reminisces how his father used to say, “Eric, come out of your cocoon,” meaning he should open up and be receptive to the world around him. Thank goodness for us he did, publishing The Very Hungry Caterpillar at the age of 40 and making the world of children’s picture books a more colourful, beautiful place.