There are so many picture books I want to share and I want to do them justice…I love them all. These are definitely new favourites of mine and I will try to share them with others…but for now, I just want to hug them and re-read them.

Written and Illustrated by Emma Lazell
Published by Pavilion Books

A hilarious book featuring a clever dog outwitting humans! When Penny decides she wants a new dog, she sends new assistant Pat to steal him. Pat, however, gets a bit muddled up with the descriptions of the dog and brings home everything but the wanted pooch. Moments of belly laughing ensue as he gets one feature right and the others wrong; spotty, floppy eared, long tail. Not all pets are created equal as Pat quickly learns. The dog watching all the antics is no ordinary dog and he is observing the whole time adding up all the clues to help catch the dognappers! The illustrations are detailed and colourful, feeling like a hide and seek for clues to catch Penny and Pat. Completely delightful and fun!

Written by Pat Zietlow Miller, Illustrated by Jen Hill
Published by Macmillan

A book that needs to be in every classroom celebrating the importance of kindness, however small the gesture. Sometimes it takes the younger generation to teach the world how to be kind as they view it so simply. When Tanisha spills her juice and all laugh at her, another little girl tries very hard to be extra kind. Guiding the reader through small acts of kindness, reminding us to use people’s names, to share and to care for the environment. A wonderful book with a powerful message of kindness and hope. Perfect for those first weeks at school to remind us to empathise, care and be helpful! Stunning illustrations show kindness on every page!

Written by Smriti Halls, Illustrated by Steve Small
Published by Simon and Schuster

In a time when we are unable to see our friends and family comes along a book with a firm reminder of the importance of friendships. I’m Sticking with you is a beautifully illustrated book about Bear and Squirrel. Though they are as different as two animals could possibly be, they are the best of friends. After Bear breaks Squirrel’s favourite tea cup, Squirrel gets cross and stays cross and annoyed. Over time, Squirrel is finding the friendship a little over’bear’ing, getting cross and grumpy with Bear. Bear just wants to make things better but his size is an issue. Squirrel has had enough and needs some space (literally)! Friendships have their highs and lows as we all know but it is true strength in a friendship to say sorry! To know that you have to work hard, communicate and be honest with each other.

Written by Simon Philip, Illustrated by Ged Adamson
Published by Simon and Schuster

Thinking ahead to September, this book will resonate with it’s title alone! After being away from school for such a lengthy period of time, some of our children will feel nervous, like the little girl in this story. When she wakes up to face her first day, she is made more nervous by a tricky older brother telling her how bad things will be. It takes Grandma to sit, listen to and alleviate the worries. Worries about a bear not sharing his chair, a grumpy rhino and a musical baboon are quickly turned around by looking at the positives and being excited about the surprises school can bring. This is going to the top of my September recommended reads for my schools. The beautiful illustrations are tailored made to show empathy from Grandma, whilst maintaining the humour of the animals in school.

Written by Morag Hood, Illustrated by Ella Okstad
Published by Simon and Schuster

Sophie and her unwavering confidence are back for more adventures, this time preparing for a a long, difficult race! Sophie is of course training hard (making and ignoring her mess), eating well (sweets and chocolates) and dressing fabulously (a super tutu)- all key elements of being a Sports Superstar! Ignoring all offers of help, resisting training advice from her Mum and running the wrong way during the race allow the reader plenty of giggles as Sophie remains completely unaware of what is truly happening around her. A comedic genius, Sophie is fast becoming one of my favourite book characters. I love the illustrations in this series- lifting Sophie off the page and into our hearts!

Written by Emma Perry, Illustrated by Sharon Davey
Published by David Fickling Books

I have been waiting for a copy to come into stock for months…and I am happy to be the newest owner of this incredible book. Haven’t we all had that conversation with a child who doesn’t like books? Well it turns out Mabel doesn’t like them- never ever- the end! She uses and abuses books by climbing on them, using them as doorstops and sliding down the stairs on them. My librarian heart skips a beat on each of these pages. When faced with a challenge of landing in a book and not being allowed to go on the adventures, she decides to make a change. A change we wish all our reluctant readers would make! This wonderfully illustrated book is exactly the book we need to read to every child proving just how fun reading is!

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