Friday, January 28, 2022

What's a Wombat?

by Christopher Cheng; illus. by Liz Duthie 
32 pages; ages 5-9
Candlewick, 2021  

theme: animals, nature, nonfiction

Far underground, where dirt and tree roots mesh, tunnels lead to a burrow.

That’s where wombat lives. Wombat is a nocturnal marsupial, so she becomes active as day fades into night. We follow her as she ambles along her well-worn path on a mission to find breakfast. We watch as she excavates a burrow. And we find where she has left her cube-shaped poop on a rock – it’s her way of marking her territory, so stay out if you’re another wombat!

Wombats may look soft and cuddly, but you don’t want to tangle with them. They have sharp teeth, strong limbs that they use to shovel dirt like bulldozers, and bony bottoms they use to defend their burrows.

What I like about this book: It’s fun to tag along with Wombat on her daily rounds – where we see the world through her point of view. Sidebars add additional information, and there’s additional information at the back. There’s a handy index at the back that makes it easy to look up information more quickly. 

Beyond the Books:

Learn more about Wombats. Here’s an article about wombats, and here’s a video, and here’s an article about how they can produce poop cubes. Because, yes – scientists wanted to know.

Make a Wombat mask. Use cereal box or paper plate to make a stiff face – add ears, draw on a nose, and remember to cut out holes for your eyes. Tie it on with yarn and go off on a wombat adventure.

Learn how to talk like a wombat. They are generally quiet, but make a variety of sounds such as the soft grunts and loud raspy calls you can hear on this video.

Today we're joining Perfect Picture Book Friday, an event where bloggers share great picture books at Susanna Leonard Hill's website. Review copy provided by the publisher.


  1. I love the illustrations. Candlewick makes such beautiful books. And I think kids will love spending time with this wombat (and saying the word, wombat, as many times as they can, LOL). Thanks for the rec, Sue!

  2. I agree - the illustrations are delightful! And now picturing Jilanne repeating “wombat” 3xfast! Haha!

  3. What soft, beautiful illustrations. That cover will certainly interest children as well as a peek into the Wombat's world and daily habits. Nice choice!

  4. That cover is delightful and I am so glad wombat is getting her "day" in the limelight. What fascinating creatures. Thanks for highlighting this book!!

  5. I have always thought wombat is a very funny word, and I do want to know more about them. I just ordered this book from my library. Thanks for the post.