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This is the perfect place to find storybooks on animals from across the world - from wild animals to our household pets.
A hungry little mouse strolls through very prettily illustrated countryside scenes, reminiscent of favourite folk tales, and is lucky enough to discover four juicy apples. So far, so good, but then she runs into a bear, a bear who holds that might is right and who refuses to share. Undeterred, the clever mouse finds a way to eat her apples and to persuade her new friend of the joy of sharing. Written in rhyme this is particularly pleasing to read aloud and children will love the story of a lesson learned and friendship formed.
July 2021 Book of the Month | It’s time for the sixth and final instalment of Julian Clary’s much-loved children’s book series The Bolds! Teddington’s wildest family of hyenas have decided to do their bit for the planet and go green. They're reducing, reusing and recycling as much as they can. Not all of their eco-friendly ideas are welcome, though - especially when it comes to 'watering' the neighbours' front garden with wee ....
Just like every other cat, Furry Purry Beancat loves a catnap. But unlike other cats, when Beancat wakes she finds herself about to embark on a whole new adventure! Shhh! Our furry (and purry!) heroine has woken up in a LIBRARY, and there's trouble afoot. There are plans to close it down, but with the help of two grumpy SPIDERS, can BEANCAT do what she does best and SAVE THE DAY?
Boo! A Fishy Mystery is a veritable feast of colour by the picture book talent that is Kate Read. Boo! follows up her award-winning One Fox: A Counting Book Thriller and is another triumph. The unique way she builds her creations is just stunning with a mixture of collage, printing and drawing, creating layers of beautifully coloured texture and detail. It's one big stroke-able underwater triumph. As we follow the tiny pink fish on his adventures, we meet a host of sea creatures as the cheeky character causes chaos in the deep. The multi-coloured mayhem is marvellous with Kate's illustrations really bringing the emotions of the fish to life in a funny and vibrant way.
Welcome to the wise and wonderful world of everyone's favourite bear. Paddington Bear is a beacon of happiness - well meaning, funny and always kind. Explore Paddington's unique and universal take on life in this very special collection of warm words about friendship, family, love, laughter ... and everything in between.
What a perfect book to celebrate the 80th anniversary of Puffin and its founder Allen Lane and an intensely personal book for author, Michael Morpurgo, suffused with his love for the Scilly Isles and for his family history - his wife Claire being one of Allen Lane’s daughters. The utterly beautiful illustrations by Benji Davies evoke his own holidays with grandparents in Cornwall and one can see that this story of a boy who loved to paint is one that is very personal to him too. Every inch of this book is crafted with love (make sure that you look at the hardback cover beneath the dust jacket with its soaring puffin against a glorious blue background and the images of both author and artist at the end) The illustrations range from dramatic double paged spreads, to little sepia vignettes but every page illuminates the absorbing and heartfelt story which begins with the lighthouse keeper Benjamin Postlethwaite and a terrible shipwreck from which he singlehandedly rescues 30 people including the 5 year old narrator of our story. Recently fatherless and travelling with his French mother to grandparents in Devon, the rescue and Ben himself make a huge impact on the boy – not least because of the paintings which fill the lighthouse and the gift of a small painting which becomes his most precious possession. The portrayal of the grim and bleak life with unloving grandparents in Devon, the misery of boarding school and of an artistic child who was a bit of a loner is very moving. As soon as school is finished the boy retraces his steps to the now defunct lighthouse and discovers a home, a friend and an artistic vocation as well as an injured puffin that together they nurse back to health. A puffin who keeps returning and brings others with him. By the time the young man returns from the war he could not avoid - the island and Ben have become a sanctuary for these characterful birds as well as our narrator and his future family. A charming book which evokes a very real sense of place as well the importance of being true to yourself and finding your place in the world.
A charming, witty ode to everyone’s favourite pet by Lo Cole – the acclaimed author and illustrator of the unique and captivating interactive counting book, Ten on a Twig. The funny, rhyming text accompanied by delightfully bold illustrations takes us through twenty-seven unexpected and amusing varieties of dog that you could have; “One that begs? One that sheds? One that rips things into shreds?” A stylish picture book that celebrates the good and bad of our perfectly imperfect companions, this is the perfect gift for dog lovers of any age.
'Eve's Ducklings', written by Maria Monte and illustrated by Emelie Wiklund, is a lovely picture book aimed at three to five year olds. It starts with an experience that almost every young child will relate to, that of going to the park with a much loved older family member, and takes us through all the emotions Eve feels there and how she learns and grows because of them. When Grandpa takes Eve to the lake for the first time, they are delighted to see that the duck family has two ducklings. Eve runs to try to catch and hold them, hug and pat them but grandpa warns her that their mother will not be happy about that. On every visit she still tries to show them her love in the only way she knows but the ducklings just retreat to the middle of the pond until one day Eve falls in the water in her efforts to reach them. This makes her really start to think about her approach and, taking a step back, she scatters sunflower seeds for them instead. Before long, the ducklings come for the seeds and Eve is at last able to see them close to. This book is an excellent encouragement for children to start thinking about their relationship with wild creatures, how to show them respect, give them their own space and love and care for them in a suitable and responsible way. A charming and inspiring story. Drena Irish, A LoveReading4Kids Ambassador
When she was younger, Ellie used to love watching the hares leap and play on the common with her mum. But with every year that goes by since she lost her mum, it's getting harder for Ellie to remember her and those happy memories. Until one day on the way home from school, Ellie finds an injured hare on the path. The poor animal looks so scared, she has to do something to help. Nursing the hare back to health will be a big responsibility, but it might just be Ellie's chance to feel close to her mum again...
Winner of 2020 CLiPPA | At a time when children need nature more than they ever have, Cherry Moon is a book to treasure. It contains one hundred short poems – intense bursts of colour, sound and sensation, all inspired by the natural world – a plum tree coming into fruit , the moon in a rosy twilight sky, that noise your feet make walking through mud... Though they seem over in a moment, there’s a thoughtfulness and depth to the poems that will make you pause and images that will stay with you, so that you’ll find yourself returning to them again and again. It’s a superb introduction to poetry for the very young and a wonderful book to share; beautiful to look at too, thanks to Junli Song’s stunning screen print illustrations.
Toddlers will love this delightfully entertaining but yucky pop-up (or plop up!) book but perhaps parents will enjoy it a little less although the humour is brilliantly portrayed in it. It’s packed full of poos that plop, drop, splish, splosh and pop off the page. Poor mole is dumped on by someone but he doesn’t know who, so he sets of on a journey to find out. A timeless classic that is also available in paperback but this pop-up hardback edition definitely takes top spot for its novelty.
A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month July 2019 | Cleverly blending story and information and beautifully illustrated, Hello, Horse captures the best qualities of a horse called Shannon and describes how a very special bond between and animal and a child can be made. Vivian French brief text provides the perfect introduction to the different features of a horse and to details about how a horse should be approached by a child. She explains how to touch and feed a horse and also how to ride one! Catherine Rayner’s illustrations capture the gloss of Shannon’s coat, the sinews of her body and, above all, her characterful expressions which bring her to life perfectly.
Selected for The Book Box by LoveReading4Kids | Featuring animal adventures by top writers for younger readers - among them Guy Bass, Holly Webb, Penny Dolan, Malachy Doyle and Narinder Dhami - this anthology of winter warmers is a delight to snuggle up with as a treat before bedtime. Here we encounter little Pip the Penguin, prickling with excitement ahead of taking part in the Penguin Parade - can he step up when Santa needs help? Then there’s Bigfoot who gets lost in a sparkling, snowy wood, and Chookie the husky pup who must overcome her nerves to pull a sledge for the very first time. Fans of wilder animals will especially love Narinder Dhami’s Tiger in the Night, a peril-packed adventure featuring a trio of mischievous Siberian tiger cubs. With ten tales in all, this is perfect for reading aloud to little animal lovers, or for newly-independent readers to enjoy alone, with Alison Edgson’s evocative illustrations enhancing the wintry wonder.
Translated by Rachel Ward | The world needs a smart, resilient, lucky little hero right now, and Nibbles the mouse fits the bill perfectly. At the opening of the story, Nibbles is living quietly but happily with his family in Munich but redevelopment means they have to move somewhere a lot less comfortable and when Nibbles gets the chance to hop on a train to Switzerland (aka mouse heaven) he takes it. All sorts of adventures follow – he even finds himself performing in a circus – and his travels take him to France and England too before he makes his way home to his family. Nibbles is a great storyteller and his adventures are both comic and thrilling, while he meets some wonderful characters on the way. The telling is enlivened further by Axel Scheffler’s colour illustrations which are a perfect match for Nibbles’ plain but heartfelt narrative. Thoroughly charming, this is a great little book and perfect for shared or solo reading.
This is a wonderfully silly, wonderfully funny picture book from the absolute master of the genre, Tony Ross. Mr Wolf is a tricky character, more than a match for his neighbours, a flock of sheep who – ulp! – provide most of his meals. They are shockingly easy to trick though: apparently you can fool some of the people all of the time. Even so, Mr Wolf comes to the sort of end he deserves, and it’s entirely his own fault. Giggles guaranteed on every page, and as always Ross tells his tale with visual and verbal flourish.
A little mole sets out to dig the biggest hole ever in an attempt to follow her dreams and prove how special she is. Things don’t go well. First, she crashes through a fox’s ceiling, then she spoils a hedgehog’s lawn, before causing a young rabbit to lose his kite. But with encouragement from a friendly otter, Little Mole carries on digging and suddenly, unexpectedly, and against all the odds, she makes everything right. It turns out her very special talent is helping her friends. It’s a lovely message, and one that will resonate in particular with young children who feel unspecial or just a bit lost. The illustrations are warm and full of fun, especially the cross-section scenes which let us follow Little Mole’s tunnelling across two pages! Find more books on being a good friend in our Friendship collection.
Tom Moorhouse ingeniously breathes new life into Toad of Toad Hall in this engaging chapter book. In an inspired bit of plotting, the young heroes of his book Teejay, Ratty and Mo, descendants of the original Wind in the Willows characters, discover poor Toad frozen in the icehouse beneath Toad Hall, left there years ago by the Weasels who have their beady eyes on his property. Before you can say ‘Poop Poop’ Mr Toad has thawed out and in typically enthusiastic manner is embracing our brave new world and its shiny gadgets. The style is very different to Kenneth Grahame’s but Moorhouse captures the absolute essence of Mr Toad, who is the same impetuous, childish character, alternately egotistical and generous, foolish and brave. The story rattles along with regular nods to the original, and Holly Swain’s illustrations add to the adventure, humour and general warmth.
Zube and the GIANT Storm is a picture book that I would say is aimed at younger children. The pictures that accompany the text are child-like and I think that this would make children connect with them as something they might draw. The illustrations depict what is happening in each chapter which allows children who aren’t yet independent readers to follow along with the story easily. Zube is a very unique Zebra, he has a distinctive single red stripe down the centre of his body which makes him stand out and allows everyone to see everything he does. Zube’s boredom and curiosity drive the story as he sets out to discover how other animals spend their time, and what happens in their world. The many different animals that Zube meets have different names that I think would make younger children giggle - Big Squirt, Little Squirt, Littler Squirt and Littlest Squirt (a family of Elephants), Peckerpants, Wrigglesquiggle and Ponko. The various animals serve as guides for Zube throughout his journey. As a giant storm approaches the animals must work together in order to prevent a disaster. I think that Zube and The GIANT Storm is a really interesting story. I think that there are a lot of key themes that are great for children’s books such as working together and empathy. I also think that the messages in this book will help to teach children about animals, growing up, trying something new and learning when to be safe when danger appears.
Celebrate World Book Day 2020 with a brilliant new picture book story about Bing! It’s Bing’s bath time and he wants Flop to read him his favourite story. But books don’t like splashy baths, as Bing soon learns. Find out what happens when Bing’s bedtime book gets all drippy-wet and Bing and Flop are forced to use their imagination to finish the story. A charming new picture book about telling stories, overcoming adversity and the power of imagination. This World Book Day Bing picture book is sure to delight all toddlers!
February 2010 Book of the Month | Treasure, tropical islands, shivering timbers – everyone loves a pirate story and this one is particularly fun, especially for newly confident readers. The crew of the Golden Earring are a rum bunch, from grumpy Captain Halibut to hapless cook Cannonball. Their antics are observed by the animals on board – Cutlass the parrot, Patch the ship’s cat and Monty, the ship’s monkey. When a treasure map is discovered, only the animals know how dangerous finding it will be – how can they keep the humans safe? It’s all lots of fun, a jaunty, thoroughly satisfying story full of incident and humour. Illustrations by Kate Pankhurst make this as fun to look at as it is to read. Ooo-arrrs all round!