Delightful picture books to share with young readers. These are bound to put smiles on your face as you read them.
The Invention by Julia Hubery and James Munro, Published by Graffeg
Fili lives in a large building with plenty of “Someone’s”, none of whom share more than an occasional good morning to each other. Fili watches with interest until one day she designs an idea, an invention…one that will need help when it’s ready. Interest in peaked as those “Someone’s” begin to notice her work and ask questions. Hosting an invention party, they all attend to finally see what Fili has been making and it turns into something much more than just an invention. The monochrome use of colour throughout helps to highlight the interactions between Fili and her neighbours and as bursts of colour are added, you can see connections made. A really great story to get children chatting about inventions, living near neighbours and the sense of community we all need. Who Will Kiss the Crocodile by Suzy Senior and Claire Powell, Published by Little Tiger
A fabulously stylish retelling of Sleeping Beauty- one that deserves a soundtrack of classic 80s tunes. Princess Liss is being thrown a party but someone has been missed off the guest list and throws a spell that says Liss will bump her knee and die but then a kindly pixie steps in and changes it to sleep. The evil pixie also curses Liss to live as a crocodile until then…meaning when she does fall asleep, no one dares kiss her! Then the Handy-Grans come along and save the day! Funny and full of familiarity, this is an excellent retelling! The amazing illustrations add an 80s style charm to the story and I loved looking at the fashion, hairstyles and accessories. This would be great for young readers learning about fairytales and traditional tales and the twists we can add to make them modern, fun and funny. I Really Want to Share by Simon Philip and Lucia Gaggiotti, Published by Templar Books
Our delightfully funny and determined heroine is back and things are changing at home. Her family of three are becoming four and sharing becomes a priority. Sounds easy…or is it? The young girl sends birthday invitations and shares her cake, but maybe it isn’t fairly. Grandad tells her she has to learn. He and her grandma have learned to share and it isn’t always easy but sharing makes them a better team. When her little brother comes along, all he does is cry and make her parents exhausted. This isn’t the sharing she was hoping for. All new families will resonate with the tiredness, excitement and anxiety of bringing home a sibling. This series is fantastic and truly teaches children how to “win”, “shout” and “share”. Valuable lessons and wonderful illustrations make this an ideal series for younger readers. I’m Almost Never Bored by Anna Milbourne and Asa Gilland, Published by Usborne
This series is so popular in school and children love playing peekaboo with the well placed holes in the story. In this book, we hear the dreaded two words any child can utter, “I’m Bored”. In this book, Dad smiles and says being bored is good as it is how you feel right before a big idea comes. As the young girl designs a box to be a spaceship, watches the wash going round and creates monsters from scribbles, she must admit her parents are right. Helping young readers to understand their restlessness, fears and being kind, these gorgeous books are wonderfully designed. They are engaging and children will completely relate to the characters as they face the challenges in their world. I love the detail and lovely illustrations in these books. Maybe have this book ready for half terms and longer breaks from school as a helpful reminder of good ideas coming to those who claim boredom. Penguin Huddle by Ross Montgomery and Sarah Warburton, Published by Walker Books
Last year, 10 Delicious Teachers was published by the same team of Ross Montgomery and Sarah Warburton to much fanfare and delight. When Penguin Huddle arrived, I had high expectations and these were completely surpassed. Taking a Penguin huddle, something Penguins do to keep warm, and turning it into a problem to be solved, takes the penguins on a rather strange journey. They leave the cold South Pole and travel via iceberg and whale to reach warmer climes. When their problem remains unsolved, there are plenty of animals on hand to help. Enchanting, heartwarming and fun, this will be my winter assembly read aloud. The cover illustration is my favourite but the entire book is full of colour, detail and charm. Can I Play by Nicola Kinnear, Published by Scholastic Books
George has his own island and loves to do any number of fun things on his own. He prefers his own company as friends can be tricky, sometimes playing different games or laughing at you. When Pebble arrives, George wants to play alone so naturally, Pebble follows along. All seems to be going well until Pebble laughs as George’s dancing. George storms off and Pebble goes to play in the sea. When George spies dolphins teasing Pebble, he immediately comes to her rescue. It turns out they are friends. Nicola Kinnear has a series of books introducing readers to sharing, friendships, and courage. The remarkably detailed and colourful illustrations are endearing and you can’t help but love George and Pebble as they navigate their new friendship.