Ivy is 4 now but I can clearly remember the days when we were eagerly anticipating her first word. Would it be Mama, Dada or something else entirely? If this sounds familar, then you’re probably going to like this hilarious book from American comedian Jimmy Fallon.
The story follows a range of farmyard fathers as they try to get their children to say ‘Dada’. Naturally it doesn’t quite go as planned! As the dads say ‘Dada’ over and over again, the babies all insist on responding with their respective animal sounds.
This is a book of few words – in fact, until you get to the end of the book there’s only one word per page!
Baby Badger is extremely curious about the world. He explores every detail and corner of his underground home and then asks his Dad “What’s Next?”. His Dad explains that there’s a whole forest up above them so together they head out in to the dark.
Baby Badger sniffs and snuffles, learning everything he can about this new environment. He discovers soft moss and bluebell bulbs and his dad takes him to a spot where he can look at the stars and the perfect full moon. But inevitably, impatience sets in and Baby Badger asks “What’s Next?”. There are more things to learn and more things to see and he wants to do it all right now.
As the rain beats down on a sandy beach, Little Turtle pushes her way up and out of her nest and gets her first view of the world. Instinctively she moves quickly towards the waves and soon she finds herself swimming in the ocean which will become her home.
As she grows and becomes more confident she marvels at the beauty she sees around her. The bright colours, glittering shoals of fish and reefs teeming with life all delight her senses and make her feel so happy to be alive. The ocean is her very best friend.
When Turtle matures she returns to the beach where she was born to release her own clutch of eggs on the sandy shore. She makes this journey many times and she loves the fact that each journey is different because her beautiful ocean is always changing, always offering something different for her to behold.
Mr and Mrs Frog run a charming little Lost & Found shop in the middle of a large city. Their tiny premises is overflowing with lost items which they hope to reunite with their owners. One day a mouse enters and asks them for help – but he can only speak French.
He is desperately looking for his ‘chapeau’, but as Mr & Mrs Frog can only speak English they are confused. . They muddle around the shop, pulling out objects at random and waving them questioningly at the mouse. Each time the mouse shakes his head. He’s not looking for ‘un parapluie’, ‘un manteau’, ‘des lunettes de soleil’ or ‘un pantalon’. He definitely hasn’t lost any ‘fromage’ or ‘un ordinateur’ or ‘une banane’.
All the mouse wants is his ‘chapeau’ – but how can he explain that to Mr & Mrs Frog?
Seahorses are special because, unlike most animals, it is the male of the species which gets pregnant. When it’s time to mate he puffs out his tummy and the female lays her eggs in a little pouch where they are then fertilised. He carries the eggs until the baby seahorses are ready to be born.
This beautiful board book follows Mister Seahorse from conception to birth as he meets a whole host of other sea creatures who are preparing for the arrival of their own little ones. As we follow his journey we discover that he is not unique and that many other male fish go to great lengths to keep their young safe.
Mr. Stickleback builds a nest for Mrs. Sticklebacks eggs and then hovers over it, protecting them. Mr. Tilapia carefully carries eggs in his mouth so they are safe from predators. Mrs. Kurtus lays her eggs on Mr. Kurtus’ head and he carries them there until they are ready to hatch. Mr Pipe has a line of eggs running right along his belly and Mr. Bullhead is the primary carer of his brood once they are welcomed in to the world.
When Sophie the baby sea otter learns about the horizon she is determined to swim all the way there. Her Mum warns her it’s impossible but Sophie thinks it doesn’t look that far, so she sneaks off on an epic journey.
On her travels she finds a magnificent lighthouse, befriends a walrus, meets a whale and dives deep under the water to swim with colourful tropical fish – but no matter how far she travels that pesky horizon eludes her.
As night falls Sophie realises that perhaps her Mum was right. Tired and alone, she bristles with fear when she spots a mighty ship heading in her direction. She has swum so far, how will she ever make it home?
Duck likes nothing more than having some peace and quiet to kick back and relax, but the trouble is everyone around him is just so noisy! The other birds in his pond love to quack and flap around which makes Duck very grumpy indeed. One day, after being splashed in the face whilst trying to read his book, Duck grabs his suitcase and leaves.
He travels far and wide in search of the perfect peaceful home but everywhere he goes he is surrounded by noise. At one pond he finds a group of birds dancing around a stereo wearing sunglasses and in the next he finds himself surrounded by a duck choir in straw hats!
Exasperated, Duck travels further afield. He tries a city fountain, a mountain spring and a deep dark pool in a hidden cave but each and every one has very noisy occupants.
Have you ever wondered why some animals have really distinctive markings? Steve Smallman and Nick Schon think it might have something to do with a rather mischievous monkey…
Once upon a time all of the animals on land were a dull shade of beige, but the birds in the sky were bright and colourful. Monkey is a little bit jealous of their splendour so when he finds a paintbox he decides to have some fun. He waits until his friends are sleeping and then paints elaborate designs on their bodies.
He starts small, with some stripy snakes and bright green frogs, but soon he’s painting black stripes on zebras and big brown squares on giraffes. When he spots a big sleepy bear he decides to have some fun and draw some spectacles on him, but the Bear wakes with a start and soon all of the other animals are wide awake too.
Pirate Mouse is very good at being a pirate, but she’s not a huge fan of water. In fact, she hates it so much that she hasn’t had a wash in years! Her stinky habits mean that she hasn’t got a lot of friends left, so when she discovers an exciting treasure map she is forced to set off alone.
Her adventure leads her to a big ship, but in order to find the treasure she has to face her nemesis – water! To reach her goal she needs to dodge a giant splashy mop, avoid a massive bucket water, hide from the rain and jump over great big puddles.
But when she arrives at the treasure she is met with an unexpected surprise – a puffin wearing a crown, trapped all on his own in a fishing net.
If you’re looking for a gift for a new baby, or a sweet bedtime read for a toddler then i’d like to draw your attention to the ABC of Kindness because it is utterly adorable!
The gentle rhyme takes us on a soothing trip through the alphabet, highlighting all the ways we can be kind to each other. Whether it’s F for Forgiveness, P for Patience or U for Understanding, this sturdy little board book is the perfect way to introduce the concept of kindness from a very early age.
The book features a host of loveable animal characters and the illustrations exude warmth and comfort. Ivy’s favourite is the little elephant who pops up on multiple pages with a joyful smile on his face.