No catches, no fine print just unconditional book loving for your children with their favourites saved to their own digital bookshelf.
New members get entered into our monthly draw to win £100 to spend in your local bookshop plus lots lots more...Find out more
Nothing beats sitting with a baby or toddler on the knee and reading a book together: here are the best selection of books for babies and toddlers from 0-2+
December 2021 Book of the Month | Share this Christmas adventure book at bedtime for a perfectly charming festive read, full of frosty scenes, inviting flaps to lift, and the friendliest little bunny characters. Read it in the day, and ideally before a walk in the park, and it turns into a set of instructions for a special holiday adventure, with an invitation to join a very jolly elf chase. With shades of We’re Going on a Bear Hunt, there’s lots of repetition, lots of actions to copy (skate, skate, glide) and lots of fun.
December 2021 Debut of the Month | Anyone familiar with the works of the book’s author Nick Cave will know this question is one explored extensively in his song-writing, mostly through characters responding to some form of turmoil. In The Little Thing this is also the case as we follow a tiny being who is frustrated and even distressed by the process of trying to understand what it is. Cave’s drawings are simple and vibrant alongside dialogue from those trying to help on this journey of self-discovery. In the end what is discovered is that it’s OK to simply accept yourself for what you are, even if exactly what that is remains a mystery! What is more important is who you are, how that feels, and what a wonderful thing it is to find kindred spirits and simply be. This is a lovely and intelligent book to share with your own little things that is sure to reassure, spark discussion and encourage acceptance and inclusion, written by a man who wouldn’t know how it felt to ‘fit in’. The Little Thing will be available exclusively via Cave Things, Nick Cave’s online shop : cavethings.com/products/the-little-thing
Once upon a silent night, a stable stood. A star shone bright. It is midnight on Christmas Eve, and a child is about to be born in a stable. How can the creatures help? First, the cow offers up his manger, and the donkey gives his hay. The doves will sing the babe to sleep, the trees will watch over him, and the moon will fill his dreams with silver light. It's a moment of magic, as a little child enters the world and brings with him the most precious gift of all: love. A beautiful and timeless retelling of the nativity story, with a lyrical rhyming text and luminous illustrations, this book is the perfect Christmas gift.
A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month November 2021 | Its Christmas! The green crayons claims that he is only colour for Christmas. After all, Green is for Holly and Fir Trees and Elves – mostly! – and they are all a big part of Christmas. But what about Red? And Brown? The other crayons are very quick to point out that they are all part of Christmas too!. Small in size, brief and excellent fun this is a perfect stocking filler!
It’s Christmas Eve so of course everyone is looking out for Santa. Are those reindeer antlers we can see through the window? Is that his red suit we can glimpse in the kitchen? Or his red hat behind the Christmas tree? The excitement grows from page to page as we open the special flaps to find – not Santa, but something equally festive. There he is on the final page though, and exactly where he should be! This little board book is lots of fun. The very young will love opening the flaps and joining in with the repeated refrain, ‘I’m going to catch Santa!’ There are Christmas treats on every page and that surprise pop-up ending will set everyone giggling. Peeks and pops and good cheer all round!
Yuval Zommer’s enchanting picture book conjuration of the majesty of the northern lights and Arctic landscape is a seasonal delight that little ones will want to return to time and time again. Both the poetic text and magically stylised illustrations are mesmerising. This is a beautiful book to read aloud to share the wonders of the northern lights, and also a book children will adore poring over in their own time, delighting in the illustrative details while reciting the beguiling text. Much like the lights it describes, Zommer’s language dances - it skips off the page and over the tongue. The story is also suffused in a sense of light-through-darkness hope and togetherness. With subtle sparkles on its cover providing additional seasonal appeal, this is an utter joy.
Tickled Moon sure know how to create quality personalised picture books, with the customised elements seamlessly woven into the stories, illustrations and design. Given that you can also include a dedication, all the books in this range make perfect presents to be enjoyed together and cherished for years to come, with What’s That??!! being especially great for a pretty broad age range. One-year-olds will be captivated and set off giggling by Alison Reddihough’s lively, rhyming exclamatory text and Jodie Wonford’s bold illustrations, while readers up to five will adore the utter silliness, and perhaps even feel inspired to think up their own suggestions for silly things that would NEVER happen! From a boot in the fruit, to a sliver of moon on a spoon, to a shark in the dark, the book is a bedazzlement of absurdity. What’s more, with the facility to personalise it with up to four names, What’s That??!! is a sure-fire winner of a gift.
A review for Mog the Forgetful Cat A classic story about a loveable cat who saves the day in an amazing way. Mog always seems to be in trouble. She is not especially clever and she is very forgetful with the result that she often ends up doing all kinds of things that she shouldn’t. In fact, she almost always seems to be in trouble. But when Mog disturbs a burglar stealing the silver she is suddenly the best cat in the world! A warm-hearted story, which captures the very special relationship of a family pet.
There’s huge fun to be had in this gloriously interactive book which is a spur to imaginative play as well as a great introduction to familiar colours and shapes. A singing button, a tickle button and many more. All young readers will be delighted by the invitation to press each one. Once they have done so many possibilities open up as they head off into whatever invention they choose to imagine. Sally Nicholls uses her word carefully and with pleasing simplicity and Beth Woollvin’s illustrations add special details of their own.
Families of every name share a love that's just the same | Follows six families from breakfast until bedtime and discover the things that Baby loves to do in this inclusive book which forms a snapshot of daily life that families of every kind will recognize and relate to. Baby will love watching their daily routine unfold with every turn of the page, from playtime, nap time and bath time through to bedtime. Artwork from bestselling illustrator Frann Preston-Gannon will bring a smile of recognition to parents' faces everywhere and captures the unique loving bond at the heart of every family.
A hilarious new picture book from author of The Suitcase, Chris Naylor-Ballesteros - with neon ink throughout! Frank and Bert are the best of friends and they LOVE to play hide and seek. But Bert the bear isn't quite as good at hiding as he thinks he is . . . and Frank ALWAYS wins! Every. Single. Time. But when it's Bert's turn to hide, and Frank has to decide between winning again OR making his friend happy, Frank learns that friendship is always the true winner. This interactive and entertaining story about friendship is guaranteed to get children giggling! Every Nosy Crow paperback picture book comes with a free 'Stories Aloud' audio recording - just scan the QR code and listen along!
The lives of the inhabitants of a small town are transformed by music in this elegant picture book. The music pours out of a small window high up in the eaves of a house – readers can see it, a stream of flowers, blossom and delicate leaves. The melody banishes a young boy’s loneliness, makes an old lady feel lively and full of joy, gives everyone the thing they are missing and prompts kindness and generosity. When the music suddenly stops, the townspeople work together to help the musician, whose identity will surprise everyone. This gentle story celebrates the power of music in all our lives, as well as the importance of community and love. The illustrations come as close as you can get to a visual representation of music and are full of warmth and fellowship.
Here’s a thing I bet you never knew about wombats, but which is a big part of this entertaining picture book: they are the only species on the planet to produce cube-shaped poos. The story that follows the imparting of this piece of fascinating information, is all about wombat poo, specifically that of little George, whose mummy won’t let him go and play until he’s used his potty. Potty stories are always popular, and George’s efforts to obey his mum, and the advice he gets from friends, are both funny and charming. The illustrations are warm and full of life – George is a very appealing little character – and parents will find this a good way to introduce the subject of toilet training.
Lovely, lugubrious Mr Panda is back, loaded up with doughnuts and ready to dispense advice on the best ways to behave. He’s already addressed politeness and good manners, in this story he has one question for the animals queuing up for a delicious doughnut, ‘Have you washed your hands?’ Not one of them has, though Lemur’s tail is clean, and Hippo’s bottom. After Mr Panda has explained why it’s important to have clean hands too, everyone gets together for a marvellous rub-a-dub-dub, soap bubbles sparkling everywhere and there’s one final joke before they get their sticky treats. As ever, the story is beautifully simple, yet will stand repeated readings. Mr Panda cuts a wonderfully bulky figure against a sea-green background and every page is a visual delight.
In a similar vein to ‘Who Needs Nappies? Not me!’ this latest, rousing, potty training cry ‘You Can't Wear Panties!’ by Justine Avery is a short and good humoured picture book to celebrate progress during the toilet training process with any young reader. Filled with delightful pictures, offering those who aren’t able to wear “panties” (flowers and goldfish? Most definitely not!) and a triumphant young girl who has reached the stage where she can. young readers are sure to have a giggle at whether each character in the picture would be able to wear big-girl pants as they read. Filled with humour and positivity, this another nice book for any parent who is potty training and looking to encourage excitement around toilet independence. I would have liked some variation in the phrasing to make it more appealing to slightly older readers too (and to assuage my personal dislike of the word “panties”), but the repetition of the two key phrases throughout the book is guaranteed to have young children marching around proudly chanting for the rest of the day. Charlotte Walker, A LoveReading4Kids Ambassador
‘Everybody Toots’ by Justine Avery follows in the same style as previous books in the series, ‘Everybody Pees’ and 'Everybody Poops’. There’s humorous details to spot on the cover which I’m sure will have young children giggling from the outset. As with the other books mentioned, ‘Everybody Toots’ is a great picture book for normalising bodily functions, and encouraging children to be more confident in their body and what it does. The light-hearted words take you through an extensive list of people and animals who all have one thing in common: they all toot. The illustrations by Naday Meldova are bright and colourful, with lots of amusing facial expressions and scenarios depicted. Another fun book that could help to start the conversation of why we toot with younger readers as well as a way to give confidence and reassurance when needed. Charlotte Walker, A LoveReading4Kids Ambassador
If ever there was a picture book to be enjoyed in the long winter nights, when there’s a crackle of frost in the air, it’s this one. Snow Ghost comes shimmering out of the air, she soars over hills and woods, darkening as evening draws in, searching for somewhere to settle. Nowhere seems to offer a welcome and she’s lonely and getting tired when on top of a hill she spots a small farm with two happy children in the garden. They all play together in the snow until night falls completely and as the children go in, Snow Ghost settles on the roof, home at last. Snow Ghost is a magical creation in Diana Mayo’s illustrations, floating across the pages almost not there, yet a tangible presence, and we look down with her on the valleys, fields and quiet little town below. The sense of stillness – then joy and hope – is perfectly captured in Tony Mitton’s text which is as graceful and airy as Snow Ghost herself. A perfect story for this time of year, a celebration of hope and belonging.
‘Inside Cat knows many windows, finds a view wherever it goes’. A busy mess of scribbled lines and big wide eyes, Inside Cat wonders, wanders, gazes through those many windows, all different shapes, out into the world outside. In contrast to the pale almost ghostly depictions of the interior, that outside world is vivid and colourful and full of intriguing sights, including ‘fluffy rats’ (or squirrels to you and me) and ‘roaring flies (a helicopter). Inside Cat thinks it knows all there is to know about the world outside, but a turn of the final page and wow! is it in for a surprise! Told in rhythmic, lilting rhyme, and exploring ideas of shape and perspective, this clever, superbly illustrated story is also a wonderful celebration of the imagination.
Who better to welcome at Christmas than Elmer, the very embodiment of goodwill to all. In this special shaped board book Elmer and the young elephants are getting ready for Christmas Day. They’ve found their tree and decorated it, but the youngsters are cheekily still awake when Papa Red arrives on his sleigh. Elmer has to wait until they’re finally asleep to distribute the presents they’ve been left. With McKee’s trademark bright, bold colours, it’s lovely to look at and there’s a sense of fun on every page. A Christmas treat and a lovely introduction to Elmer for the very young.
The words provide a language of communication long before conversation is possible and the joy in recognising them over many re-readings provides endless shared pleasure while the pictures can be enjoyed first jointly and then by the child alone as they pour over the images they love.
Included in our selection are a range of really sturdy and interactive books suitable books for babies and toddlers for the bedroom, the car, the bath, the buggy and the playroom. Books that even the tiniest baby will enjoy alone and with their parents.
Titles in this section will be refreshed each month with a range of new and older titles that we feel should not to be missed by any baby or toddler.
There are some excellent free reading activities on the Small Talk website small-talk.org.uk/0-6-months
And click here to read some helpful tips from top childrens' publisher Egmont.
Check out the latest activities in our KidsZone.