Hi Chitra and Poonam! We have loved your earlier collaborations – ‘You’re Safe With Me’ and ‘You’re Snug With Me’ – so we were really excited to discover your new title ‘You’re Strong With Me’. They are such heart-warming stories and the illustrations are unlike anything I’ve seen in a children’s book before.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourselves, in case we have any readers who are unfamiliar with your stories?
CHITRA SOUNDAR: I was born in India, and moved to the UK about a decade and half ago. I’ve written over 30 books for children, published across Asia, Europe and North America. I’ve been a teacher, programmer and a manager before I became a full-time writer.
We were lucky enough to meet the lovely Chitra Soundar at an event at Moon Lane Ink last year so I was very happy when Lantana Publishing invited us to be part of the book tour for her newest title – You’re Strong With Me.
This is the third book in a trilogy, all of which feature beautiful illustrations from Poonam Mistry. The previous books in the series are You’re Safe With Me and You’re Snug With Me and each one focuses on the wonderful bond between parent and child.
In this story we follow a mother giraffe and her calf through a day in the wild. The little giraffe encounters many things which make her scared or uncomfortable, like a hissing fire and a bird which pecks at her fur, but her mother is always there to reassure and comfort her.
Ivy fell over at nursery today and came home with two badly grazed knees. She was feeling very sorry for herself but we popped this gorgeous little board book off the shelf and her sniffles soon turned to giggles.
Poor Little Rabbit has taken a tumble and he has a big ouchy on his elbow. It’s up to your little one to help him out and make him feel better!
First the book suggests blowing on the elbow. This helps a tiny bit but Little Rabbit doesn’t like the fact he can see blood. Perhaps a plaster might help? Your child is then invited to try singing a song, stroking his ears and then wiping away his tears.
If your child finds bodily functions hilarious (and to be honest what toddler doesn’t?) then this little primer on the science of poo should definitely be on your bookshelf!
Filled with facts about the digestive system, it follows our food from the first bite, down through the body and right out the other end. We learn what poo is made of and why it can look different when we have an upset tummy. There’s even a ‘Rate Your Poo’ page with a child-friendly version of the Bristol Stool Chart!
The book contains a lot of detail but the illustrations make it toddler-friendly so you can adapt your reading/language to the right level for your child. For example, at 3.5, Ivy doesn’t really understand the concept of different types of nutrients so I skim over this part and will revisit when she’s a little bit older – but she absolutely loves the section which explains how a pizza turns in to poo!
When you have a baby you seem to spend most of your time talking about or dealing with poop, then just when you think you’re done, your toddler suddenly develops a fascination with what it is and where it comes from. Sigh!
If you’re getting lots of questions about poop or having problems potty training then this fab little book from Usborne might be what you’re looking for. It’s full of fun facts and lift-the-flap sections to entertain and educate curious little minds.
What is poo made of? Does everyone poo? How much poo does an elephant do? Where does it go when you flush the loo? What kind of animal has spotty poo and whose poo looks like toffee?
This quirky book from Stephanie Blake is a guaranteed crowd please because all toddlers think the words Poo and Bum are hilarious!
The story is about a little bunny called Simon who can only say two words – “Poo Bum”. Every time he is asked a question he only has one response – “Poo Bum”. One day he meets a wolf, who asks if he can eat him. When Simon responds “Poo Bum” the wolf takes this as a yes and gobbles him right up!
The little bunny causes a tummy ache though so a doctor is called, who happens to be Simon’s Daddy. When the Wolf starts saying “Poo Bum” during the examination the doctor begins to suspect the wolf has eaten his son. Can he rescue him, and what effect might the incident have on the little bunny’s vocabulary?
When night falls in the Indian forest it is time for the baby animals to go to sleep. However on this particular evening a storm is brewing and the noises make the little ones afraid. Suddenly the forest is full of unfamiliar noises and their imaginations run wild. The trees are swooshing, the wind is howling, lightening is flashing and thunder rolls in the sky.
Fortunately Mama Elephant is there to calm their fears. Each time they are woken by a noise she gives a lovely description of what is happening and why. For example the wind huffs and puffs because it is tired from all the hard work it has been doing gathering seeds from faraway lands and bringing them to the forest. She finishes each little story with a soft whisper of “You’re safe with me”.
We’re not quite ready to start toilet training yet but I’ve recently bought a selection of books which address the topic to ease Ivy in to the idea.
This is the first one that we’re reading together and it’s a fantastic (and frankly hilarious!) way of introducing poo in to conversation in a fun way.
Zoo Poo takes you on a little journey around the zoo and shows you how each animal poos. Kangaroos do it while they hop, birds poo from the sky and elephants do poos that are bigger than you!
The illustrations are really fun and we always giggle our way through the book as Ivy find the poo on the page and yells ‘poo poo’!
The book then shows how humans poo on the loo and even includes some useful tips for parents.
Buy it now: https://amzn.to/2pWcITs
We are massive fans of this zany series so when the newest book – Oi Puppies! – arrived, Ivy was bouncing off the ceiling.
Frog, Dog and Cat are back to discuss the important issue of where everyone should sit, but this time they have a slight problem. Dog is babysitting a zillion puppies and they just won’t behave. They clamber all over Dog, hang from Cat’s whiskers and even start chewing on poor Frog’s swimming trunks.
Something needs to be done, so Frog gets on the phone to the wonderfully named ‘Oi Animal Seating Supply Co.’ to try and arrange some suitable ‘chairs’.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your family
I am a freelance artist manager and classical music project manager, and I live in Hull with my nearly 3-year old son, my husband, and our cat. My son and I love reading together; he asks for stories first thing in the morning, often throughout the day, and always has several at bed time. He has just started to want to read them himself and can recite lots back to me, with a very funny way of skipping over the bits he can’t remember!
What is your son’s favourite book?
My son loves all the books by Julia Donaldson; I think The Gruffalo is his favourite but he is also extremely fond of Room on the Broom and Stick Man. I think the poetry really appeals to him, and he is fascinated by the details. In The Gruffalo he likes to look ahead a few pages to where the Gruffalo appears, and says “Look, a Gruffalo!” and I say “No, it can’t be, there’s no such thing as a Gruffalo”… and then he squeals with joy when the Gruffalo finally appears (and I am proved wrong)!