Category

Animals

Little Rabbit’s Big Surprise
by Swapna Haddow & Alison Friend

It’s time for another chapter book review and this one is utterly adorable!

Little Rabbit is a very bored bunny, so when the opportunity comes along for her to spend the day with her grandfather – Big Rabbit – she is very excited indeed. Big Rabbit tells her he has lots of work to do and she can be his assistant. Little Rabbit thinks this sounds like fun but she’s a little confused. As far as she’s aware her grandfather doesn’t have a job – he just spends all his time talking to his friends!

Over the course of the day the two rabbits encounter lots of different animals who need help. The entrance to Mole’s new burrow is much darker than he had realised and he’s worried that Little Mole and his friends might take a tumble. Granny Hedgehog has a nasty cold and she’s feeling very lonely in her little nest by herself. Dormouse has just moved in to a new house but it needs a lot of work and he has four little babies to  feed and look after. And poor Squirrel has sprained her paw which means she can’t forage for food for her young children.

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Oi Aardvark!
by Kes Gray & Jim Field

If you’ve been following us a while you’ll know we are huge fans of the Oi Frog & Friends series from genius duo Kes Gray and Jim Field. We have all the books in the series and Ivy literally jumped for joy when the latest was delivered to our door.

A quick recap in case you’ve been living under a rock for the last few years and haven’t encountered these joyful stories before… Frog, Cat and Dog are 3 friends with a penchant for rhyme and a slightly unhealthy preoccupation with seating arrangements. Cat started the trend in book 1 (Oi Frog!) when she insisted that frogs can only sit on logs then Frog took up the baton in book 2 (Oi Dog!) and has been a tiny bit obsessed ever since.

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Owl Always Love You: A Bedtime Book of Love! by Patricia Hegarty & Bryony Clarkson

Books about sleep are always great for calming over-excited kids before bedtime and this particular one is ridiculously cute and very soothing.

“Time for bed, my little one, another day is through. As we snuggle up together, you know owl always love you.”

Written in gentle rhyme, this chunky board book takes us on a tour of the forest as all the baby animals settle down to sleep. We see little owls, bunnies, dormice, hedgehogs, squirrels and songbirds be coaxed in to bed by their grown ups and snuggle down for the night.

With glossy pages, raised sections and clever cut outs, this is a warm and cozy story for curious toddlers to explore. The pages are brimming with love plus the gorgeous illustrations give you the opportunity to talk about different kinds of animal homes and habitats.

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Jasper & Scruff
by Nicola Colton

It’s time for another chapter book review and this one had Ivy and I in fits of giggles!

Jasper likes to think of himself as cut above your average cat. He lives in a fancy apartment surrounded by books and fine art and his taste in bow ties is impeccable. Jasper has everything he needs except the ‘right’ kind of friends. He dreams of joining an elite group of felines called ‘The Sophisticats’ because members are invited to all the best parties and dine at the nicest restaurants in town.

He carefully crafts a letter inviting a select group of The Sophisticats to his home for dinner and is over the moon when they accept – but things don’t quite go to plan…

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Along Came A Fox
by Georgiana Deutsch & Call Johnson-Isaacs

It’s the perfect night for finding fireflies so Bramble the fox heads out on a little adventure to find some – but where are they hiding?

She joins forces with her friends, Hazel the hedgehog and Twig the owl, who suggest that she look near the lake. Bramble bounds off in to the darkness because foxes never get scared, but when she peers in to the deep pool she lets out an almighty ‘EEEEEK!’ and falls on her bottom. There is another fox in the water staring straight back out at her! Bramble is embarrassed. How dare this nasty fox catch her unawares and make her fall over! Soon she finds herself yelling at the water, telling the fox that he is very rude indeed – but the audacious creature keeps on echoing her replies.

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Elephant Me
by Giles Andreae & Guy Parker-Rees

‘Giraffes Can’t Dance’ is one of our all-time favourite books so we were extremely excited to get our hands on this new one from the same team. I am happy to report that it didn’t disappoint and we’ve been reading it on repeat for days!

It’s the day of the Elephant Games which means that all the baby elephants have to perform for the King. In line with tradition, if they manage to impress him with their special skill then he will award them with their Elephant Name.

Nina goes first and she chooses to display her strength by ripping a tree from the ground with her trunk. King Elephant Mighty is amazed and he names her Elephant Strong. Norcus bellows so loudly that he gains the name Elephant Noisy! As each elephant steps forward in to the limelight, the King spots that one little elephant is cowering at the back of the line. Poor Num-Num hasn’t found his special skill yet and when he tries to perform some tricks everyone laughs at him – even the King!

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It’s Only One
by Tracey Corderoy & Tony Neal

Sunnyville is a beautiful place to live. The residents are a friendly bunch and everything looks pristine – until one day Rhino drops a sweet wrapper on the floor and everything starts to spiral out of control.

“What? says Rhino “It’s only one…” – but of course it’s never as simple as that. Soon everyone in town thinks it’s ok to drop litter and the streets start to pile up with rubbish.

The mess makes Giraffe very unhappy so he picks a flower from the local park to brighten up his home. “What? says Giraffe “It’s only one… – but the town’s flower beds are quickly emptied as everyone picks ‘just one’ flower of their own.

Things go from bad to worse when Pigeon decides to play music in the park to cheer himself up. Yes – you’ve guessed it. Just one song!

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The Tower Bridge Cat
by Tee Dobinson & Steve Cox

Bella is a Bridge Master’s cat who lives at a very famous location – Tower Bridge! Today she is very excited as it’s the Queen’s birthday and the Royal Barge will be passing through. Everyone around her is preparing for a big celebration and it’s Bella’s job to make sure everything is on track.

As she visits each member of the team we get a lovely insight in to the inner workings of the bridge. We meet Stan the Stoker, Eddy the Engineer, Olly the Oiler and Hannah the Cook, each of whom has a special role to play in the festivities.

Finally everything is ready and Bella sits down to watch for the Royal Barge. As the Queen nears the bridge the bascules start to rise but Bella spots a problem. The traffic lights are green and there’s a double decker bus heading right towards the big gap at the centre of the bridge!

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Paris Cat by Dianne Hofmeyr & Piet Grobler

Cat lives with her large, noisy family in a smelly alleyway behind a fishmonger’s shop in Paris. Surrounded by fish bones and squabbling cousins, she finds herself dreaming of a bigger life. She wants to see more of this fabulous city and find out what it has to offer.

One night she slinks in to a crowded cafe where she sees Edith Piaf singing to a sophisticated crowd. Filled with confidence,  Cat joins in but is quickly ejected for caterwauling. She finds herself outside in the rain so she climbs a fire escape and sneaks into a nice warm room to sleep.

When she awakens Cat realises she is in an atelier surrounded by busy seamstresses, taffeta, velvet and racks of beautiful dresses. She watches carefully and by the time the workers leave for the day she has formulated a plan. She gathers up scraps of fabric and using her new found knowledge she creates herself an outfit befitting of a high-society cat.

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The Three Billy Goats Fluff
by Rachael Mortimer & Liz Pichon

Ivy really enjoys traditional fairy tales so I love it when we discover alternate versions with interesting twists! This new take on ‘The Three Billy Goats Gruff’ had her giggling from start to finish.

When Mr Troll moves in to a brand new pad he’s looking forward to some luxury living, but instead he finds himself under a bridge frequented by a very noisy family of goats – the eponymous Billy Goats Fluff. The trip-trapping of their hooves keeps him awake 24/7, leaving him sleep-deprived and very, very grumpy.

He puts up a carefully worded sign but this doesn’t work so he soon finds himself shouting at the goats and threatening to eat them unless they stop waking him up. The three little billy goats are scared so they head home to tell their mum all about the nasty old troll.

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