Tuesday 16 November 2021

Poddy’s Jumper

Poddy’s Jumper by Patricia Bernard, illustrated by Krista Brennan (Cool Dude Books) PB $18 HB $25 RRP ISBN 9780958655385

Reviewed by Kathleen Grace

This colourful picture book is one of a kind. It has been inspired by a nation-wide support for sheep farmers. As Marie Knight says in a foreword, orphaned lambs suffered during a 3-year drought, so she began knitting jumpers to keep them warm. Soon she was getting requests from farmers for 100s of jumpers. What followed was amazing: over 170,000 jumpers were knitted Australia-wide and given to farmers.

Poddy’s Jumper celebrates this remarkable feat. Poddy is an orphaned lamb which, with other orphans, is picked up by farmers Marie and Tony and taken to their farmhouse where they are warmed and fed. ‘What he (Poddy) needs is a woolly jumper,’ says Tony. When their friends learn they are knitting woolly jumpers for the lambs, friends ask for a pattern so they can knit, too. (In fact, if you want to knit a lamb jumper, there is a knitting pattern in the book.)

‘Click-clack went the knitting needles all over the country, as the farmer’s friends, and their friends, and their friends’ friends began knitting,’ reads the text. Everyone in Australian and overseas knit jumpers. There are football jumpers, superman jumpers, even ballet jumpers. Soon Marie and Tony’s house is overflowing with jumpers. Thanks to the media, other farmers receive blankets for their lambs. As for Poddy, he appears on television wearing his favourite jumper. The story finishes happily with Poddy dancing as there are rain clouds in the sky… the drought is soon to end.

This is a delightful book, well-written and illustrated with bright, watercolour illustrations and is sure to be appreciated by readers of all ages.

Note: RRP prices are above. Books are available (with postage) from http://www.patriciabernardbooks.com and are offered with a free eBook in another language (French, Italian, Greek, German, Spanish, Hebrew, and Arabic).

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