Book Review: Same But Little Bit Diff’rent by Kylie Dunstan

Here is an occasion where I unashamedly judged a book by its cover. The colours, vibrancy, title and cheeky faces of the children on the front cover of Same but Little Bit Diff’rent had me instantly smitten.

This book is not only a visual delight; it is a heart-warming story with a meaningful theme. Same but Little Bit Diff’rent is a celebration of people, of cultures, of lifestyles, of traditions, of likenesses, and of differences. Kylie Dunstan invites readers to look past obvious physical differences, and instead seek the similarities they share with people of different cultures or regions.

Right up the very top of Australia there is a special place. My friend Normie comes from there and he says that things are different to what you might see in the city. ‘Same but little bit diff’rent’.

There are things that all people need regardless of their culture or where they live. They are the elements of life that bind people together: food, water, relationships with animals, play, crafts, skills, transport, work, art and stories.

Normie shares all of these elements in the stories he tells to his city-dwelling friend.  They both eat fish but ‘catch’ them from different places; they both like to swim but they swim in different types of waterways;  they both enjoy playing but they play different games; they both enjoy listening to their grandfather’s stories but the stories are different.

Kylie’s illustrations are sublime. Full colour pages are created with paper collages using a variety of angles and proportions (including aerials, close-ups, long shots and low angles). On many pages, the typography has been set to compliment the illustrations; some words swim like fish or appear in rain drops, while others snap out of a crocodile’s mouth. Each page is bold, vibrant and sharp and captivating.

This is an endearing story for all Australian children, which has been told with heart and creativity.

Book Details:

Author/Illustrator: Kylie Dunstan

ISBN: 978-1921136603

Format: Hardback

Publisher: Helen Chamberlain Books for Windy Hollow Books, August 2012

RRP: $27.99 (aud)

Suitable for ages: 3+

Book Review: Same But Little Bit Diff’rent by Kylie Dunstan


  1. I would love to win a copy of this to share with my 2 Kindergarten groups to further raise awareness to similarities and differences between others and to further promote discussion regarding Indigenous culture in Australia.

  2. This seems like a great book. I love the artwork. A lot of Australian books are not available here in the states, but it sounds like another book I know called “Same, Same But Different” by Jenny Sue Kostecki-Shawand also the book “Mirror” by Jeannine Baker. Thanks so much for linking up to The Children’s Bookshelf. I hope to see you again next week.

  3. I love to win this book to read my two littles daughters
    Thanks for the change :)

  4. This book would be a fabulous addition to our home library. My daughters are half Indian (husband was born in Kenya to Indian parents) and half “Anglo Australian” (mum has Irish and Italian background). We want to start talking to them about her variius backgrounds and how they differ and how they are the same.

  5. I have to say this is one of those books I, too, am judging by its cover. It is so beautiful and inviting- something I would hang on the wall in my boys’ rooms. I would love to add this book to our ever-growing collection of Australia books to take back home and to add to our memories of our time here. :)

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Book Review: Same But Little Bit Diff’rent by Kylie Dunstan

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