Monday 10 January 2011

The Wandering Wombles

The Wandering Wombles by Elisabeth Beresford (Bloomsbury)
PB RRP $13.99
ISBN 9781408808337
Reviewed by Nean McKenzie

Following on from the first book in the series, The Wandering Wombles continues with the adventures of our familiar furry friends who clean up after us messy, rather wasteful human beings. In this book the Wombles face the problem of finding somewhere new to live. The story is quite fast paced and would suit readers aged eight to twelve. Black and white illustrations by Nick Price depict the Wombles with their pointy noses and shy expressions. Who wouldn't want to meet a Womble some day?

Two new characters are introduced in this book. Wellington is a young, bespectacled Womble who works in the library. The responsible Miss Adelaide is in charge of the Womblegarton. In case adding two more to the already large cast of characters confuses any readers there is a Wombles Who's Who at the back of the book. This is followed by a few Wonderful Wombling Facts to further satisfy the fans.

This story is not just set around Wimbledon Common. In their search for a new home, the Wombles send out a scouting party (Bungo and Orinoco) to Loch Ness in Scotland. The gardens of Buckingham Palace are also checked out as a possible place for a new burrow but are found to be far too tidy for Wombles.  

To the obvious recycling message is added an environmental message. The destruction of the burrow is caused by heavy trucks passing by the Common. But don't worry, the Wombles are resourceful and the book has a satisfying ending. The reader can then look forward to the next book in the series of six.  

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