Wombat Stew cover
Illustrated by Pamela Lofts
- Age Range: 4+
- Length: 32 pages
- Format: Paperback and Hardcover
- Size: 7.7 x 10.3 inches
- First Published: 1984
Wombat Stew by Marcia K. Vaughan is the story of a dingo who captures a wombat and plans to cook him in a stew. Various other animals happen by and offer Dingo suggestions as to what he should put in his stew. Dingo follows their advice, adding all sorts of not so appetizing ingredients. In the end, Dingo's wombat stew turns out to be not nearly as palatable as he had anticipated.
The text is relatively short and uncomplicated, written with a certain rhythm. The wombat doesn't have a huge role in this story, though the pictures of wombat and his expressions are particularly entertaining, especially the dancing wombat at the end.
The colorful, lively pencil crayon artwork by Pamela Lofts is quite appealing and adds much to the book. The animals have an interesting style to them, a stylized realism with a fanciful flair that would not be out of place in a fairytale. Most of the drawings have good detail and the expressions on the animals are reminiscent of those computer-manipulated pictures of real animals whose features have been exaggerated for pet commercials and greeting cards.
A 21st birthday edition of Wombat Stew was recently released, attesting its enduring popularity. It was also one of the stories that was read to over a quarter million children in Australia during National Simultaneous Storytime 2005.
Wombat Stew is a quick and pleasant read that should keep the young ones amused and may even have them singing the wombat song ("Wombat stew, Wombat stew, Gooey, brewy, Yummy, chewy, Wombat stew!").