Doctorsaurus
by Emi-Lou May & Leire Martín

When Triceratops damages her horn at a dinosaur picnic her friends know exactly who to call – Doctorsaurus!

Armed with her doctor’s bag and some extra-sticky plaster, the lovely doctor fixes the problem in a jiffy, but soon she has lots of new patients to see. Stegosaurus has a splinter, T-Rex has a blocked nose and Brontosaurus has a big, bloaty tummy. Doctorsaurus doesn’t bat an eyelid as she deals with green goo, snotty slime and some rather icky smells and before they know it all the dinosaurs feel well enough to celebrate.

But as they tuck into their picnic, Doctorsaurus hears an almighty rumbling and yells ‘Emergency!’. It looks like those prunes she prescribed Brontosaurus might be about to take effect…

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Meet the Oceans
by Caryl Hart & Bethan Woollvin

Geography was never my favourite subject at school but if our textbooks had looked anything like this beauty from Caryl Hart and Bethan Woollvin then I suspect I may have paid more attention!

At the start of this gorgeous rhyming story we hop on board a submarine with a little girl and her dog. Together we embark on a journey to see the world’s oceans, but this is no ordinary tour as the guides are the waters themselves.

First we meet the Arctic Ocean, who smiles as she speaks of her pride at being the smallest. She shows us her narwhals, her beluga whales and the polar bears who inhabit her ice. Next is the choppy Atlantic who tells us about her underwater mountains and hidden caves. Our submarine glides past blue fin tuna in the Indian Ocean, sea snakes in the Coral Sea and millions of pieces of plastic in the Pacific.

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Beatrix and her Bunnies
by Rebecca Colby & Caroline Bonne-Müller

I’ve read countless stories by Beatrix Potter but I have to admit that until I read this beautifully illustrated picture book I didn’t know anything about her life. Did you know that Benjamin Bunny and Peter Rabbit were real live animals which she befriended? Nope. Me either!

At the start of Rebecca Colby’s story, young Beatrix is living in London and feeling very lonely indeed. She loves animals and has lots of pets but none of them can really play with her in the way that she’d like. But then, on a visit to the countryside, she meets Benjamin, a mischievous bunny who loves snuggles and games. Finally the little girl has a friend!

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The Last Garden
by Rachel Ip & Anneli Bray

In the middle of a war-torn city a garden grows. It’s surrounded by devastation, but within these four walls there are trees and herbs, vegetables and flowers, and most importantly there is hope.

Every day Zara tends to her plants, helped by the local children, and when the work is done they climb trees and build dens. Outside the war looms, but the garden gives them the freedom to play and to shake off their worries for a short while. They pick flowers to brighten up their homes and bring baskets of fruit to their friends in hospital.

As the conflict increases their focus turns to mending the things in the garden which have been broken, but eventually the danger is too great and they are forced to leave the city behind.

When the war is finally over the families return to what is left of their homes. As Zara unocks the gate to her precious garden her anticipation rises. What will she find within those four walls?

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Alone!
by Barry Falls

On the edge of a busy, bustling town is a hill with a little house on top. This is the home of Billy McGill, a solitary child who avoids people and noise. He enjoys his own company and spends his days alone with his books for company, until one day he hears the squeak of a mouse…

Billy definitely doesn’t want to share his house with the tiny furry creature so he heads into town to fetch a cat to scare away the mouse. This seems like a great idea, until the two animals unexpectedly become friends. Billy then finds a dog to scare the cat, but this doesn’t work either. The boy’s plan soon spirals out of control and he soon finds himself co-habiting with a mouse, a cat, a dog, a bear, a tiger, a vet, a sheep, a hairdresser, a baby and a big red balloon!

Overwhelmed by the noise and the chaos, Billy storms out of his house and finds a new hill, but as he stares into the sunset he finds himself thinking of everything he has left behind. Could he be ready to let some new friends into his life?

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Love from Giraffes Can’t Dance
by Giles Andreae & Guy Parker-Rees

I totally meant to post about this book on Valentine’s Day but, despite searching the whole house, I couldn’t find it anywhere. This morning I found it lodged down the side of Ivy’s bed which means she must have snuck it upstairs to read by herself! I’m not surprised though, as we have so many happy memories attached to lovely Gerald the Giraffe.

The original ‘Giraffes Can’t Dance’ story was one of the first picture books I read with Ivy when she was a baby and it is still a firm favourite. We were both so happy to receive this gorgeous new board book featuring all over our favourite characters.

The beautiful rhyme, written in Giles Andreae’s signature style, celebrates all of the ways which love can make us feel. Our favourite line is:

‘You make me want to somersault and leap up in the air.
You make me want to sing and skip and boogie everywhere!’

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Can I Sit With You?
by Sarah Jacoby

This heartwarming and stunningly illustrated book will tug on the heart strings of anyone who has ever had a beloved pet. Reading it brought back lots of happy memories of the cocker spaniel we had when I was a child. Pugsley (yes – I know! My brother and I were fans of The Addams Family at the time!) was incredibly naughty but gave the best snuggles.

At the start of this story we see a small stray dog brandishing a stick. He is looking for someone to play with him so he approaches a lonely little girl. What follows is a beautiful love story which lasts for many years.

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Dig! Dig! Dig!
by Wenda Shurety & Andrea Stegmeier

Jake is bored and more than a little gloomy. As he sits at home staring out of the window into the cold grey street he longs for colour and excitement – but where can he find it? He twirls his globe and finds himself wondering what life is like on the other side of the world.

Feeling inspired, Jake heads out into the garden and starts to dig a hole with his bare hands. If he digs deep enough then surely he can tunnel right through the earth and pop up in the southern hemisphere.

As Jake digs something wonderful starts to happen. First a little girl appears with a spoon and asks if she can help, then a boy arrives with a toy digger. Soon the garden is full of children all working together to help Jake on his quest – but how far will they get?

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Bunny Makes Breakfast
by Kathryn Smith & Seb Braun

Happy Shrove Tuesday! Did you make pancakes with your little bunny today?

This gorgeous board book follows a family of rabbits as they source ingredients and cook themselves a delicious breakfast – but they need your help!

They start off in the kitchen, where your child is encouraged to lift the flaps to find flour, maple syrup and butter. Next up they head outside for berries, fresh eggs and creamy milk from the cows.

Little Bunny is very excited but really isn’t sure what they’re making. Can your child help them guess what will be served up?

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A (COVID) Day in the Life of
Children’s Author Judy Carey Nevin

Ever wondered what it’s like to be a children’s author? Judy Carey Nevin, author of ‘All Kinds of Kindness‘ and ‘All Kids are Good Kids‘ talks us through what a typical day looks like for her (in the middle of a pandemic!).

“I wish I could say I have a regimented part of my day set aside for writing, that I write 20 minutes a day no matter what, but that couldn’t be further from the truth.

My days start and end with our daughter. She wakes up around the same time I do—sometimes earlier, to my husband’s chagrin. He’s an early bird and enjoys his time alone. I enjoy staying in bed to eavesdrop on them chattering away while they have their breakfast.

Once we’re all up and dressed and the grown-ups have had our tea (strong black tea with sugar, please), we go our separate ways, so to speak: me to my computer in our sitting room, our daughter to school, and my husband to his basement office. I sometimes work a full day out of the house. Then I’m a harried mess, always running late, looking for my keys, my glasses, my phone—you name it, I have misplaced it. And I always seem to be almost out of gas on those mornings as well.

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