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Willoughby Wallaby Woo: Alligator Tales    by Dennis Lee & Nora Hilb order for
Willoughby Wallaby Woo
by Dennis Lee
Order:  USA  Can
Key Porter, 2006 (2006)
* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Willoughby Wallaby Woo is one of a series of board books based on Dennis Lee's engaging poems. This one opens, 'Willoughby, wallaby, woo. / I don't know what to do', showing a boy wielding a very large colored pencil, and a drooping kangaroo (or wallaby), an equally bored looking baby roo in her pocket. Nora Hilb's illustrations are expressive and colorful.

The verses continue, with the giant pencil annotating the pages with squiggles, arrows, a raincloud, the sun, and finally flowers and grass. At the back of this cute little book are tips entitled Time to Rhyme, suggesting reading the verses, but asking the child to fill in the final rhyme word, while emphasizing that 'no rhyme is ever wrong.' Lee also suggests changing the rhymes so that they suggest a special word, as in 'Willoughby, wallaby, wungry. / I'm feeling kind of ___.'

Enjoy reading the silly verses in Willoughby Wallaby Woo together, and then have even more fun making your own poetry out of them.

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