Margaret Wild is one of our Australia children's literature treasures. Something Absolutely Enormous was one of her very first books. It was published in 1984 which by coincidence was my first year as a teacher. That same year two other books were published - There's a Sea in my Bedroom and One Shoe On. I haven't ever seen the book One shoe on have you? There's a Sea in my Bedroom is still in print and it has been made into a stage show.
It is now 35 years since I first read Something Absolutely enormous and I am still reading this book aloud to groups of young children. Wonder of wonders I recently found a mint condition copy of this book in a book sale for less than $1.
Sally is given wool of every colour and so she starts to knit. She knits and knits and cannot stop. Her 'thing' grows so big it fills and house and spills out the window. It fills up the town and even ends up in the swimming pool.
Meanwhile the circus has come to town. Sally doesn't notice this. She also doesn't notice when a fire starts and the big top is burnt to the ground. Her wool runs out and Sally finally stops knitting. "But what are we going to do with this thing that is smothering the town?" Have you guessed? Yes they can use it to make a new big top for the circus. It makes a fine tent and the circus people invite Sally to see her creation BUT Sally cannot come. She is too busy. She has discovered baking and now she has to bake, bake, bake. Once again this will be something absolutely enormous! Readers can use their imaginations to guess what she will make.
You can see the whole book here. Read an interview from 2011 with Margaret Wild. My friend at Kinderbooks has an excellent collection of books about knitting. This is such a fun theme to explore with children many of whom have not seen anyone knitting. I always take some knitting needles and wool in my bag when I share this book.
Check out some other titles about knitting on this blog:
Lester's dreadful sweaters
Mr Nick's knitting also by Margaret Wild