Happy birthday Grug! Celebrating 40 years of a true-blue dinky-di Aussie character

Happy birthday Grug!  Celebrating 40 years of a true-blue dinky-di Aussie character

Grug ambled into our lives in 1979 and has been a perennial Australian and international favourite for over 40 years, so we’re celebrating his birthday and reintroducing him to as many kids as possible.

He’s a true blue dinky di Aussie hero. Grug began his life as the top of a native Australian burrawang tree (macrozamia communis), but some say he looks more like the top of an Australian grass tree (xanthorrhea). Either way he is an adorable mop of a creature, described by some unkind people as “a haystack with a face”.

Grug wins our hearts because of his childlike curiosity about the world around him. He is always discovering new things and how the world works, very much like our littlest readers. He shares their egocentric traits as well. For example, when Grug decides to teach himself how to read he is excited to be able to enjoy his favourite book of all – Grug! When he learns to dance he names the dance “The Grug”. It’s all good fun and very relatable for 2 – 5 year olds.

Grug has experienced a lot of things that young children face in their young lives – going to the playground, learning to swim, catching a fish, visiting the beach, going to school, riding a bike, playing soccer. Everlasting favourites are Grug and the Rainbow, and Grug Learns to Dance. Grug has had over 33 different adventures, all delicately illustrated and perfectly imagined by Australian author/illustrator Ted Prior.

As a special birthday treat a special new edition is available – the Grug Has a Birthday pack  includes a birthday card, wrapping paper and ( for the first time ever) a hard cover edition of this timeless classic.  It’s got everything you need to make a lovely present for Grug…or someone else you know who has a birthday coming up. There’s also a 40th birthday pack with a collectable Grug plush toy.

Be warned – you will be reading these books over and over. They will become firm favourites with your little readers who will memorise the stories and repeat them back to you, mimicking you and “reading “ the story. Modelling reading behaviour is an important first step toward reading and so that is why I recommend these books for children 2+ . Grug is also a beautiful bit of Australiana to post overseas to grandchildren or other little ones with an Australian connection.



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Rediscover GRUG, that unforgettable hero of the Australian bush. In 2009 this once-upon-a-time million-selling little monster turns 30. What will you learn at school today with Grug?
Ted Prior
About the author

Ted Prior

Ted Prior previously worked as a police officer and art teacher. He also worked in children's TV and animation. In 1979 he started his Grug series of children's picture books.

Books by Ted Prior


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