April 2018

The Skin You Live In By Michael Tyler & David Lee Csicsko

The Skin You Live InI don’t really have the words to explain how fantastic I think this book is. In my opinion it should be on the shelf of every school library as it does such a great job of celebrating diversity.

On the surface the book is about skin colour but it’s also so much more than that. As well as illustrating the beautiful range of skin colours we have and describing them all in a lovely way, it shows how we are not to be defined by colour and encourages your child to look beyond the surface.

Our skin is a part of us and every day it helps us to be who we are and do the things we enjoy. We live inside it and smile in it. We play in it and we sleep in it. We have fun in it and we laugh in it (to quote the book we even ‘dream about eating ice cream’ in it <3).

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A Hole In The Bottom Of The Sea By Jessica Law & Jill McDonald

A Hole In The Bottom Of The SeaThis lovely book is based on the traditional folk song of the same name. This beautifully illustrated print adaptation has a twisting, turning rhythm which gradually gathers pace and takes you on an adventure to the bottom of the sea.

Featuring a whole host of underwater creatures – including a shark, an eel, a crab, a snail and a squid – it explains the underwater food chain in a really simple way.

The weeds absorb the sun. The snails eat the weeds but are then in turn eaten by the crabs. The crabs are eaten by the squid, then the squid are eaten by the eels and ultimately the eels are eaten by the sharks. The illustrations are soft and gentle to avoid any potential anguish over the animals all eating each other!

The book comes with a bonus CD which features both an audio version of the song plus a video animation. And if (like us) you happen to lose the CD then the video can also be found on YouTube here.

Buy it now:

The Earth Book By Todd Parr

The Earth BookThis fantastic book by Todd Parr is all about the little things that we can do to make a big difference to the earth. The concepts are explained in a really simple way so that your child can see a tangible reason for being environmentally friendly.

Tell a child that they have to colour on both sides of the paper or that mummy has to take her own bags to the supermarket and they probably won’t understand why. This book connects those actions to preserving trees and shows you that without trees then owls won’t have anywhere to live.

We love Todd Parr’s bold illustrations and Ivy loves naming all of the colours as we move from page to page. A gorgeous introduction to the wonders of the earth and why we should preserve it. This book is a New York Times Bestseller and we can see why!

Buy it now:

The Butterfly Dance By Suzanne Barton

The Butterfly DanceDotty and Stripe are caterpillars and they have been friends for as long as they can remember.  They love spending time together and having fun munching on leaves.

When they both transition in to butterflies they are excited to meet up and show off their new wigs. Dotty has beautiful blue wings with multicoloured dots and Stripe has striking red wings with lovely orange stripes.

They are very excited to fly off together in to their new lives but are shocked to discover that all of the grown up insects tend to stay with their own kind. The ladybirds stay with the ladybirds and the dragonflies stay with the dragonflies. The red butterflies all hang out by the thistles and the blue butterflies like to dance among the poppies.

What will this mean for Dotty and Stripe’s friendship? Will they have to say goodbye or can they still be best friends?

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Competition: Win a set of toddler teas from Small & Wild and 4 great books!

Small & Wild CompetitionWe recently met the lovely ladies from Small & Wild and instantly fell in love with what they do. They make a gorgeous range of fruity, herbal teas which are specially designed for children.

When they asked us if we’d like to collaborate with them we jumped at the chance because what could possibly be better than a cup of tea and a good book?

They have 4 flavours of tea, each represented by a different animal, so they tasked us with finding a book to go with each one. We did our research and found what we think are the perfect matches for their Snoozy Fox, Jolly Croc, Merry Tiger and Happy Toucan teas.

You can read about our picks over on their blog here:

They are also giving one lucky winner the opportunity to win a fantastic prize –  a set of all 4 teas along with copies of the books we chose to go with them. You can find full details on how to enter over on their instagram page:

The competition closes on Sunday, April 8th so get your skates on!

Just Like Me! By Joshua Seigal & Amelie Faliere

Just Like Me!This book is fantastic for alleviating boredom when you’re stuck indoors with a toddler and it’s lots of fun for parent and child alike.

The two main characters – a little girl and a fluffy green monster wearing a rather fetching hat – invite their animal friends (and you) to copy them in a game called ‘Just Like Me’.

Clear some space on the floor and get your toddler to repeat all of the actions which the characters make. From rubbing your tummy and licking your lips to jumping up and down picking your nose, each page invites you and your child to do something silly that will make you laugh.

I find that the more exaggerated I make the actions then the more Ivy laughs and she loves getting involved. It also references lots of parts of the body so it’s a great way of learning some new words whilst having fun.

Buy it now:


Zoo Poo by Richard Morgan

Zoo PooWe’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.

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Ivy’s Guest Book: Marcela Ferreira AKA S.E. Sussed

S.E. SussedTell us a little bit about yourself and your family

My name is Marcela, I am a mum of two (Izzy 8, and George 6) and wife of one.  I am an aspiring children’s writer and though I have nabbed a great agent, I am yet to have my stories published (here is hoping).

What is your son/daughter’s favourite book?

We read a lot at our house, so favourites change all the time.  I asked the kids what their favourites are right now, and this is what they said:

My daughter’s is Jake Atlas, by Rob Lloyd Jones: “because it’s adventurous”.  Jake Atlas is Indiana Jones for kids, inspired by the author’s own experiences as an Egyptologist.  His previous books, the ‘Wild Boy’ series are fantastic (and take place in Victorian London). I was lucky enough to meet Rob, and he is a brilliant story teller in person too – I highly recommend his books.

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Snow Fight: A Warcraft Tale By Chris Metzen & Wei Wang

Snow FightIvy’s daddy has been playing World of Warcraft (an MMORPG or massive multiplayer role-playing game) since it launched back in 2004 so when he spotted this book he immediately bought it for our library.

The story takes three popular characters from the game – Varian, Thrall and Arthas – but shows us them as children on a normal winters day. It cleverly takes the essence of their in-game personalities and perfectly translates them in to little playground versions.

Friends Varian and Thrall are contemplating a snowball fight when neighbourhood bully Arthas turns up to spoil their game. He throws a large and painful snowball which prompts Varian to retaliate. Unimpressed, Thrall shows them that the game is a lot more fun if they can all just play nicely together. But can Varian and Arthas put their differences behind them?

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