As children move from Board Books to Picture Books is a huge milestone in the journey to becoming a fluent reader, and one that reads for pleasure, it gives me such joy to bring attention to titles that will definitely grab younger audiences’ attention from the get go, make them laugh and smile, ensure they think about what they hear and see from each book, and that they go away having enjoyed themselves. All of those are hugely important as we look to help children make reading a key part of their daily routine.
This is a Dog – Ross Collins
- Published by Nosy Crow
- Now available in paperback (6th August 2020)
- RRP – £6.99
Showcasing dog’s desire to be the centre of attention, and take over the entirety of the book, with more and more interaction from dog as the book develops. Dog comes into contact with a variety of other animals so children will learn how to recognise a selection of animals and their names along the way. The book has some laugh-out-loud references, and a funny ending, all of which ensure that this will prove popular with children and that it is requested time and time again.
Super Milly and the Super School Day – Stephanie Clarkson and Gwen Millward
- Published by Nosy Crow
- Available in both paperback and hardback
- RRP – £6.99 (pb) £11.99 (hb)
Through the story of Milly, a young girl attending school in a homemade superhero costume to celebrate Superhero day, readers are shown that kindness and sharing are traits that make you an everyday superhero. Milly gifts part of her costume to a child who hadn’t dressed up, and helps her other classmates with suggestions for activity content during the day. A feel good, positive story that will resonate with readers, and encourage positive behaviour.
This Book Has Alpacas and Bears – Emma Perry and Rikin Parekh
- Published by David Fickling Books
- Now available in hardback (6th June 2020), with paperback due for release in 2021
- RRP – £11.99 (hb)
Alfonso the Alpaca realises there are very few books with Alpacas in them, and reaches out to his friend Colin for help writing a book in which he can relate to the characters. Colin tells Alfonso that he isn’t book character worthy because he is too noisy, messy, etc. Determined to prove to Colin and everyone else that Alpacas are amazing, Alfonso sets about showing how incredible he is, and his talents too. Before long Colin sees the true potential in his friend Alfonso, apologises and agrees to help create the book that Alfonso has wanted all along. A great way to teach children that staying true to yourself and persevering go a long way to seeing your dreams become reality.
Over and Under the Rainforest – Kate Messner, with artwork by Christopher Silas Neal
- Published by Chronicle Books
- Released in hardback on 11th August 2020
- RRP – £13.99 (hb)
- Additional titles available – Over and Under the Snow, Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt, and Over and Under the Pond
Detailing multiple layers of life in the rainforest, including details relevant to the two brothers that are the books main characters. From insects on the ground, to large mammals up in the canopies, there is so much to learn about in the rainforest. There is also the contrasts and similarities that are notable such as foods that are eaten, and sizes too. This is a stunningly illustrated picture book that offers so much to readers, and has the perfect balance of information and illustration.
The Monstrous Tale of Celery Crumble – Ben Joel Price
- Published by Oxford University Press
- RRP – £6.99 (pb)
- Released on 6th August 2020
Telling the hilarious tale of Celery Crumble, a naughty young girl that refuses to apologise for the mischievous things she does to her family and friends, and each of those she mistreats warns her that if she continues her behaviour she will turn into a monster. When that is exactly what happens to little Celery Crumble, she decides that she should apologise in order to become herself again, well almost! A brilliant, light hearted story that readers will become enthralled in hearing, and that is sure to make younger audiences think about their own behaviour too.
My Friends and Me – Stephanie Stansbie and Katy Halford
- Published by Little Tiger
- RRP – £6.99 (pb), £11.99 (hb)
- Released in paperback 1st October 2020, also available in hardback
A beautifully written book that tells of the variety of families that exist, and how each and every one of them is as valid as the next. From families with same sex parents, to parents that live apart and share time with their child/children, and so many more family dynamics besides. The feel to the book is one of positivity and reassurance, and a feel good feel throughout as families and the relationships amongst them are celebrated.
Ride the Wind – Nicola Davies and Salvatore Rubbino
- Published by Walker Books
- Released in hardback on 6th August 2020
- RRP – £12.99 (hb)
A beautiful story of one boy’s determination to rescue and return an injured albatross to the wild, which he came across whilst helping his dad out at sea on a fishing trawler. After nursing the albatross back to health the boy is disappointed to find his dad hasn’t realised that the bird was helping him cope with the loss of his mum, and that his dad has gotten rid of the bird. Unwilling to conclude the albatross’ journey with anything other than its entitled freedom, the boy sets off intent to save the bird. A truly heartwarming story of empathy and loss, family and caring.