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: the best selection of books for babies and toddlers.
A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month October 2019 | October 2019 Book of the Month | 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.
Share this sturdy little 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. A lovely book to make the Christmas holidays even more fun.
A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month November 2019 | A joyful combination of Christmas, a heavy snow fall and a farmyard all of which are explored in double page spreads filled with flaps which makes this a book to enjoy time after time. Poppy and Sam are excitedly waiting for Christmas. They write their letters to Santa - Sam wants a train set while Poppy asks for a new bike with a basket; they set up the Christmas tree and they settle down to wait…will Santa come? And will he bring them the presents that they want? The addition of a hidden duck on some spreads and a hidden kitten on all spreads increase the fun of looking carefully at the pictures.
November 2019 Book of the Month | A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month November 2019 | The best-selling series of Usborne touchy-feely titles get a welcome addition with this great new title. Perfect for very small fingers to explore, these books combine strongly outlined pictures which include patches of different textures. These patches invite very young children to get up close to the animals and engage! Just like the little mouse in the pictures does. Here he checks out the polar bear’s claws which are too shiny, nose which is too squashy and tongue which is too rough. It is only when he gets to the lovely fluffy tummy that he knows he’s found the polar bear that belongs to him!
Generosity, unexpected kindness and warm welcomes are at the heart of this story, making it perfect Christmas reading. It’s closing time on Christmas Eve in a big department store and all the shoppers and staff have gone home leaving only Clawdia the cat – and a family of lively mice. They lead her a merry dance around the shop, stopping occasionally to point out scenes that make her rethink her ‘bah, humbug’ attitude to Christmas. A surprise ending sees Clawdia and the mice enjoying a proper Christmas day. The message is lovely and the hectic chases around Christmas displays are lots of fun. As good as any John Lewis ad!
November 2019 Book of the Month | ‘‘Twas the night before Christmas …’ but we’re on a snowy hillside where a lonely tree shivers in the cold. As it longs to be in the brightly lit little town below, suddenly footsteps suddenly approach. Somebody very important collects the tree and puts it at the centre of some special celebrations, before leaving with the familiar words: ‘Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!’ Taking inspiration from Clement C Moore’s classic poem, Chris Naylor-Ballesteros’ new book is filled with the joy of Christmas, and captures all its sense of magical anticipation. In a handsome small format, there’s a full page illustration on each right hand page and they tell the story with as much vivacity as the lines of verse opposite. It all concludes with a sparkling double page spread, the tree glowing in the foreground as St Nick flies off into the Christmas night silhouetted against the moon. If this doesn’t set you up for Christmas and its jollities, nothing will!
November 2019 Book of the Month | A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month November 2019 | Winner of the 2018 Caldecott Medal | A stunning near wordless picture book which will inspire the story teller in all of its readers. While Matthew Cordell draws on some themes familiar from the traditional Red Riding Hood story he has created a quite different and hugely heart-warming drama about trust and friendship. Dressed in a bright red coat a little girl sets off to walk home from school. Snow is beginning to fall. At the same time, a pack of wolfs, including a young wolf cub, set out into the same falling snow. The snow turns into a blizzard and soon both the little girl and the wolf cub are lost. How can either of them survive? Luckily, they come together so that bth can get home safely.
Winner of the Galaxy Children's Book Award 2010. Book and CD edition. The creators of the best-selling Gruffalo have invented a delightful new character – Zog the little dragon who always wants to do best at school. Zog’s determination to win gold stars leads him into loads of mishaps but luckily he always gets help from a little girl. And she is just as helpful when he needs a princess to rescue. Soon Zog, the princess and the prince who wants to marry her are off to do good in the world in this witty reinvention of the role of dragons. On receiving the award for WH Smith Children’s Book of the Year, Julia and Axel said: “We are delighted that Zog has won the Children’s Book of the Year award for this year’s Galaxy National Book Awards. We have worked together on creating picture books since A Squash and a Squeeze in 1993 and are continually pleased to see children and families loving our books. It is wonderful to know that Zog has captured everyone’s imagination and is a new favourite.”
Winner of the Galaxy Children's Book Award 2010. The creators of the best-selling Gruffalo have invented a delightful new character – Zog the little dragon who always wants to do best at school. Zog’s determination to win gold stars leads him into loads of mishaps but luckily he always gets help from a little girl. And she is just as helpful when he needs a princess to rescue. Soon Zog, the princess and the prince who wants to marry her are off to do good in the world in this witty reinvention of the role of dragons. On receiving the award for WH Smith Children’s Book of the Year, Julia and Axel said: “We are delighted that Zog has won the Children’s Book of the Year award for this year’s Galaxy National Book Awards. We have worked together on creating picture books since A Squash and a Squeeze in 1993 and are continually pleased to see children and families loving our books. It is wonderful to know that Zog has captured everyone’s imagination and is a new favourite.”
Award winning author/ illustrator Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler tell a rollicking story of fire breathing dragons, sword-swishing knights and a princess with a difference. Schoolboy, Zog has a lot of learning about flying, breathing fire and princesses. Being a good boy he tries his hardest to get a coveted gold star for his efforts. But not all the hard work in the world can stop things going wrong! Luckily there’s a feisty young princess on hand who knocks all the conventions for six in the nicest possible way.
Join the loveably lively Zoe and her devoted dog Beans in a world full of fun, friendship and magical adventures. It's a case of hide and seek as Beans loses his favourite toy. There's now a delightful new adventure about Zoe and Beans, called The Magic Hoop. Click here to see this title.
A delightful adventure sprinkled with magic. When Zoe persuades Beans to jump through the hoop she has no idea what will happen to him next! Beans is transformed by the hoop which turns out to have rather special powers… Zoe has to do everything in her power to get beans safely back! Click here to see the first Zoe and Beans story, Where is Binky Boo ? Visit www.zoeandbeans.com for magical games, activities and fun!
Favourite characters Zoe and Beans are back in this delightfully magical adventure. When Zoe tempts Beans to jump through the hoop with a handful of Choccy Bears she has no idea what will happen next! Poor Beans! The hoop is magic; Beans comes back – but not always as a dog. Can Zoe get the real Beans back? Luckily she can -just. A funny and heartwarming story to join the other Zoe and Beans stories. Visit www.zoeandbeans.com for magical games, activities and fun!
Another excellent first concepts book from Usborne. A little zebra daydreams about being different colours, pink like Flamingo, green like Crocodile, or even a multi-coloured combination of all, before deciding that black and white is best for playing hide and seek. Clever cut outs on each page turn zebra from one colour to another, and there’s a nice big flap to lift as an extra treat on the final page. It’s a lovely way to teach children colours and there’s an important message too about being happy with who you are. With lots to name, count and spot on each page, it’s great for sharing. ~ Andrea Reece
Brilliant fun in this alphabet book with a difference! Zebra is determined to get every letter of the alphabet matched to the right animal in the new A-Z he is creating. After all, it can’t be that hard, can it? All goes well except that moose is a little bit impatient! Barging in on E he scuffles with Elephant who wants none of him on his page and then tries to find himself a corner on H, I and J! Poor Moose! Luckily M is not far off now…Young readers will love the joke about the alphabet in this wonderful collection of illustrations which will make it forever memorable.
Big and bold illustrations portray the title of this collection in no uncertain terms whilst also capturing the big dramas that lie at the heart of these eight favourite nursery stories. Grandmother is dramatically gulped down by the wolf before being equally dramatically rescued by the woodcutter in Little Red Riding Hood, while the three billy goats gruff face a huge, hairy troll in their attempts to cross into the grassy meadow. There’s more eating in other stories as well as a very careless Goldilocks breaks the bear’s furniture before they send her packing. A new look in a big book format filled with some familiar classics.
Longlisted for the UKLA 2018 Book Award A party invitation is at the centre of this highly entertaining and amusing story. It states that guests must bring a hat, but it appears that there are more entry requirements too, and as the story goes on they become increasingly absurd. Kate Hindley is given some truly wonderful scenes to illustrate and rises to the challenge superbly. Characters featured include a monocle-sporting badger and elephant forced into a tutu. There’s lots to look at on every spread and the surprise ending will send everyone back to the beginning to check for details that might have been missed. Great fun! ~ Andrea Reece
There’s all sorts of useful advice in this picture book. Not only should you not let an elephant drive a digger, it isn’t advisable either to let a polar bear cut your hair, or a seal prepare your meal; and you should never go to the loo with a kangaroo. In fact, it concludes, it’s far more sensible to forget about letting the various animals help and just play with them instead. Each zany situation will have children laughing out loud and they’ll soon be joining in with the lively rhyming text. David Tazzyman’s illustrations inject an extra layer of wild excitement and anarchy, and this deserves to become a huge favourite with readers.
Akala, award winning hip hop artist, gives power to the kids in this uplifting, lively story which carries a positive message that with hard work and practise you can be anything you want to be. Hip, the rapping Hippo, encourages his friend Hop to learn to ride a bike so they can both take part in the Blueberry Hill cycle race. After a few falls Hop feels disheartened and wants to give up but Hip, with an inspiring rap, gets Hop back on his bike and with practise he perfects balance, brakes and steering to show off his new skills at the cycle race. 'Don't let anyone tell you no. Focus on your dreams and go!' Colourful, funky artwork from Sav Akyuz adds to the streetwise appeal. Ben Bailey Smith (aka rapper Doc Brown) has also used his rapping talent creating I am Bear, also illustratated by Sav Akyuz.
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.