Author(s): Gregg Dreise
Age range 3 to 6 Mad Magpie is the third book in this successful series of morality tales from Gregg Dreise. Inspired by wise sayings and the knowledge of his Elders, Mad Magpie tells the story of Guluu, an angry magpie who is being teased by a gang of butcher birds. The more he is teased, the angrier he becomes. When Guluu seeks advice, his Elders tell him to stay calm like the river, ignore the butcher birds and to be strong on the inside. Guluu tries this, but the cheeky birds just laugh at him. One day, when Guluu is at the river looking for worms, the butcher birds arrive and steal his food. He remembers the words of his Elders and he tries again - and this time Guluu has a different outcome. He stands proudly at the riverbank and remembers how he used to sing when he was having a bad day. Guluu sings so loud he cannot hear the birds laughing at him and they eventually give up and fly away. From that time on, the animals learnt to use music to create a happy mood and they worked together to stop bullying.
Gregg Dreise was raised in St George in Queensland. He is a descendant of the Kamilaroi and Yuwalayaay people of southwest Queensland and northwest New South Wales. He is a gifted storyteller and musician, and he features the didgeridoo in his performances at schools and festivals. Dreise is a teacher in the Noosa hinterland in Queensland.