Peeking at Picture Books – July

Deep in the Ocean

Detailing the findings of a submarine as it travels through the Ocean, heading deeper and deeper into the water. With information on the submarine like it needing to turn its lights on as it enters darker and darker waters and also specific information on fish species found at each level of the ocean like sea butterflies and cuttlefish.

The submarine continues to travel through the oceans to the polar regions where we are introduced to seals, narwals and whales in a spectacular continuation to the story which is complimented by such amazing illustrations that really help the intended young audiences imagine the journey as we take it. With some help from a whale the submarine is taken along to warmer waters where we see sharks, birds and other breeds of fish.

There is a link on the books back cover that plays you the soundtrack that was created to accompany the text within this book which would be great if played when reading the book to a small group or class, helping to add that final sensual authenticity needed to fully capture the reader within the books pages.

Published by – Abrams and Chronicle Publication date – 28.05.19 RRP – £10.99 (BB)

The Immortal Jellyfish

A sensitively written picture book that tells the story of a young boy who loses his grandad and cannot cope with being told he will not see him again. Later on when the boy goes to bed he meets his grandad again and together they head to the Life Transfer City, a magical and dreamy place where the boy is reminded that his grandad will live on through the memories the boy has and shares with others. A really lovely way of helping younger children at a time when they need the support and to gain an understanding of what they are going through, give them hope and inspiration and all in a way that younger audiences will comprehend, especially when the books text is complimented by such iconic looking illustrations.

Published by – Flying Eye Books Publication date – 01.07.19 RRP – £11.99 (HB)

Boogie Bear

Beautifully illustrated by Tony Ross, this picture book tells the story of a lazy and slightly greedy polar bears journey across the ocean to warmer climates after the iceberg she was snoozing on melts and drifts away from the climate she is familiar with. Unfortunately for her she arrives on an island who’s inhabitants are frightened and accusatory of her because they have never seen a bear with white fur because they have brown fur. In a suttle and audience appropriate way this book really does help younger audiences to see the affect treating someone badly just because they look different has on the victim, and what can be gained from giving others the benefit of doubt first.

Published by – HarperCollins Publication date – 13.06.19 RRP – £6.99 (PB)

Beautiful Bananas

A stunning collaboration between Elizabeth Laird (Fastest boy in the world, Oranges in no mans land) and Liz Pichon (Tom Gates) about a little girl who sets off to visit her grandad with a bunch of bananas for a gift and tells of how she faces setback after setback when she crosses paths with animals and insects along the way that cause her to lose what she has with her in the most funny yet predictable ways and then the animals and insects make it up to her by gifting her something relevant to them. The variety of creatures the little girl interacts with makes this book continually interesting for young readers as they anticipate what will happen next and whether they are right. The illustrations throughout really reflect the energy of the scene being depicted, and along with the use of bold colours guarantee that young readers not only understand the story fully but also help make this book one to treasure, wanting to read it over and over again.

Published by – HarperCollins Publication date – 13.06.19 RRP – £6.99 (PB)

Dracula Spectacular

One to Watch – SEPTEMBER 2019

A rhyming story of the dracula we all know and love and how he married and had a child. Naturally the parents expect the baby to be just like them – where black, be miserable and look evil, but this child has other ideas. Just as the book details at the bottom of the cover ‘Be brave. Be kind. Be colourful’ the young boy is exactly that. He borrows bright coloured clothes and goes in search of a friend and he only really feels happy when his parents embrace him for who he is and not who they want him to be. A fantastic story to share encouraging young audiences to be brave and to feel proud of themselves just as Dracula’s son is. With illustrative work that depicts the differences in expectations brilliantly, using darkness when detailing the vampire family and light and vibrant colours elsewhere which really helps the books audience to separate the scenes and get a feel for the emotional aspects too.

Published by – Macmillan Publication date – 19.09.19 RRP – £6.99 (PB)

Together We Can!

One to Watch – AUGUST 2019

Following on from the empowering title Girls Can do Anything! author Caryl Hart continues the theme with Together We Can! With rhyming sentences throughout the book gives young audiences a tale of what it is to be a good friend, how to be one yourself and that friends come in all shapes and sizes too. The book continues that some may have one friend and some may have many but there are others that have none and when we notice those that are lonely we can do something about it. This is such a positive, catchy and relevant book to the intended audience and I can see this book being read over and over and cherished by many, I for one cannot wait to share this with early years classes at the school I work at knowing it will inspire the children to be the best they can be by showing consideration and compassion for others. The illustrations really compliment this exciting picture book and exhibit the energy from the characters and scenes perfectly and give the reader so much to take in and enjoy visually, ensuring children will revisit this book time and time again.

Published by – Scholastic Publication date – 01.08.19 RRP – £6.99 (PB)

How Do You Dance?

One to Watch – AUGUST 2019

A book full to the brim with energy, How Do You Dance? details lots of different dance techniques whilst trying to determine how one reluctant boy likes to dance. The illustrations portray the movement and energy of each dance in a breathtakingly brilliant and realistic way. This feel good book encourages you to get up and get moving and explains there is no wrong technique, no effort too small. I can see there being much demonstrating from younger audiences when I share this book in my library with them, something I very much look forward too. There is a great ending that answers what way the young boy in question does like to dance, undoubtedly leaving readers with a smile on their faces as the truth is unveiled.

Published by – Abrams and Chronicle Publication date – 06.08.19 RRP – £12.99 (HB)

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