A great start for those who are moving on to chapter books; My Girragundji deals with the universal themes of fear and courage set against an exciting backdrop of Boori Pryor’s mother’s homeland, Yarrabah.
Our main character is dealing with night time fears – The Hairyman. Told in the first person, our little hero finds comfort in the company of his girragundji – the Kunggandji word for green tree frog. His girragundji provides him with confidence in many areas – from talking to Sharyn to standing up to cousin Kevin ..
“all your worries have lifted like smoke on the breeze.”
His turning point is his trip to a favourite place with his Dad, the Bohlle,
“I feel different today. Like a bird about to takes its first flight.”
Dad teaches him important new skills and eventually he realises that his confidence can come from within and so he defeats the Hairyman without the presence of girragundji
“I sleep like a man this night.”
This is a hugely accessible book for emerging readers – it has strong depth and pace. The magic comes from the first person narrative – its humour and description. This combined with the illustrations, Meme’s excellent photography and imaginative use of font ensures interest levels are maintained until the end!