We read a lot of picture books here so I thought I’d start a new monthly feature sharing the books we’re currently enjoying. I started the feature a couple of weeks back on my Instagram account and it seemed popular. The books will be a mixture of books we have been sent to review, library books and books from our own collection.
This month we’ve been reading a lot about starting school. I shared 5 fantastic books about starting school but if I had to pick just one favourite it would be Starting School by Janet and Allan Ahlberg. There’s just something about the beautiful illustrations and the familiar tale of school days that we love.
E is 15 months now and has only a short attention span for books. I have noticed that she is starting to enjoy interactive board books more. I picked up a couple of really fun books for toddlers in the library. E loves them and chuckles at the interactive elements. Interactive Peter Pan is a great adaptation of a classic and Pussy cat, Pussy cat what can you see? is a really fun little book.
F is 4 and has just started in reception at school. She loves books. Some books she’ll ask for over and over again but she also loves going to the library and picking new ones. Some of her favourites this month are:
Nibbles the book monster, Emma Yarlett
Nibble is a book eating monster and from the first time, we read this book it really captured F’s imagination. Quite simply she adores it. She’s always loved to read lift the flap books and fairy tales and this book combines the two. It builds on the idea further to make a magical, interactive read. We love the way Nibbles eats through the pages and alters the fairy tales.
Usborne Look inside your body
This is a great introduction to how the body works. F loves the lift the flaps and enjoys looking at this book with me. We don’t read the whole book, cover to cover each time. We pick a different page each time and read the facts, talk about the pictures and lift the flaps. We’ve been learning about the senses, the digestive system and our bones and muscles.
Gracie Grabbit and the tiger, Helen Stephens
A beautifully illustrated book that we adored from the first time we read it. Gracie Grabbit’s dad is a robber who steals from all the animals and visitors to the zoo. Gracie is not happy about it so try to give them back but she gets things mixed up. In the end, a friendly tiger helps get everything back to the rightful owners.
Maurice the unbeastly, written by Amy Dixon & illustrated by Karl James Mountford *
Maurice is not like the other beasts. Beasts roar, beasts destroy but not Maurice. Maurice is ridiculously photogenic and vegetarian. In an effort to make him less civilized his parents send him to the Abominable Academy for Brutish Beasts. Maurice doesn’t want to be a gargantuan failure but he struggles to fit in. I won’t ruin the story for you but of course, there is a happy ending.
We love this story. I love the language used and the way the words roll off your tongue. We love reading about Maurice and his alfalfa fritters and everything he gets up to at the Abominable Academy for Brutish Beasts. The illustrations and limited colour pallet work beautifully with the text too. This book will appeal to both children and adults alike. My daughter clearly enjoys the rhythm of the words and loves the story. I enjoy reading it too for the same reasons but there are also little jokes hidden in the story for parents to enjoy. It’s got a great moral as well, being different is not necessarily a bad thing.
Ally-Saurus & the very bossy Monster, Richard Torrey *
Ally loves pretending to be a dinosaur, “Ally-saurus”. She loves stomping and roaring with her friends. When Maddie moves into the neighbourhood, however, she wants everyone to follow her rules. Ally starts to realise it’s not right and soon finds the courage to stand up to Maddie. In the end, Maddie becomes friends with all the others and learns to get along without always being the boss.
I love that this book has a strong female lead and how it encourages children to not only stick up for themselves but for others too. The illustrations are really unique. I love the use of mostly black and white illustrations, with colour added to show the children’s imagination.
Mibo board books, Madeline Rogers *
Back in March, I shared with you 3 gorgeous Mibo board books. They are still enjoyed regularly in our house. The new books are The sky guys, The forest folk and The marine team. The first thing I noticed was the bright coloured and bold illustrations are just as eye-catching as in the original 3 books. The books also have lovely rhymes throughout. We love The marine team book, particularly which features whales, seahorses, seals and sharks. The other two books, to be totally honest, aren’t as appropriate for E. The forest folk doesn’t feel relevant to us as bears and wolves are not animals we see in our forests in the UK. Again in the sky guys, the creatures are not particularly ones I would introduce to my toddler (hummingbirds, pelican and albatross).
So that’s what we’ve been reading in September. What about you? What are you currently enjoying?
Disclosure – Books marked with a * were sent to us to review. All thoughts, opinions and photos are my own. All the other books mentioned are either library books or from our own collection.