Thursday 4 May 2023

Duckling Runs Away

Duckling Runs Away by Margaret Wild, illustrated by Vivienne To (Allen & Unwin) HB RRP $19.99 ISBN 9781761065804

So often small children become annoyed with their parents and decide to run away. So, it is with Duckling who squabbles with her mother saying, ‘I’m never coming back. Never ever!’ She sees some chicks who, playing hopscotch, invite her to join them, but no, Duckling is running away! On her journey she is asked by dogs, kittens, piglets, lambs, and bunnies to join them in their respective games. But, because she is running away, Duckling always declines.

Darkness begins to fall, and Duckling suddenly realises she doesn’t know why she is running away. An owl asks if she’s lost, and Duckling says she knows exactly where she needs to be. She turns back and as she waddles on, she passes all the baby animals snuggled in sleep with their mothers. She finishes – of course -- in the warm wings of her mother.

The illustrations not only show Duckling and her adventures, but To colours the pages to show daylight merging into night.

This is a book which young readers are likely to have as a bedtime story. It’s a reassuring story about love and trust that shows a mother’s love is always near, and forgiveness is always there from one’s parents. The book is likely to appeal to children aged from 2 to 5 years.

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