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Little Tiger

This Is Crab
by Harriet Evans & Jacqui Lee

Ivy loves books which require a little bit of audience participation and this is one of her current favourites!

At the start of the story we join Crab as he sets off on an adventure across the ocean floor. He needs some gentle coaxing and some assistance along the way though. Can your child help?

There is arm waving, finger tapping, book shaking, counting, tickling and lots, lots more. At one point crab even gets lost and you need to lift the flaps to find him!

This is such an entertaining book and Ivy returns to it again and again. The brightly coloured illustrations are wonderful and we spot new details every time we read it. It’s a great way of introducing kids to life on the sea bed and Crab encounters lots of different creatures which are fun to identify, including an octopus, sea turtles and clown fish. Ivy was also fascinated to discover that crabs shed their shells in the same way that snakes shed their skin!

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Yawn
by Patricia Hegarty & Teresa Bellon

You know how sometimes yawning is contagious? Well, when a little boy does a massive yawn at the start of this story he kicks off a chain reaction beyond his wildest dreams.

Once his yawn is out there in the world, everyone else starts yawning too. The boy passes his yawn on to a dog, who passes it on to a cat, who passies it on to a tiny mouse… Soon the whole town is yawning and it spreads through the countryside too.

Next the yawn goes international, passing through the pyramids of Egypt, the Taj Mahal and even the North Pole. Peope start yawning on buses and trains and on ships and planes. The yawn even spreads on to a rocket and heads in to space!

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Everybody’s Welcome
by Patricia Hegarty & Greg Abbott

In the middle of the forest stands a tiny little Mouse, daydreaming of her very first home. Her thoughts are disturbed by a Frog who explains that his pond has dried up so he has no place to go. Mouse takes this to be a sign and she suggests that they build a house together.

As construction begins, more animals appear and each has a sad tale to tell. There are rabbits who have been chased from their home by an eagle, birds who have had their tree chopped down and a big brown bear who feels isolated because his size scares people.

Mouse comforts each displaced creature in turn and invites them to be a part of her project. Soon they are all working together to build the perfect home, where they can all reside safely together.

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Noah And The Starbird
by Barry Timms & Faye Hsu

You’ll need to get your tissues ready for this heartwarming and truly uplifting book about showing courage and kindness during difficult times.

When Noah’s Daddy is rushed to hospital the little boy is sent to stay with his grandmother. Naturally he is scared and confused but he finds comfort in an old lamp which has been placed in his bedroom. Shaped like a baby bird, the lamp emits a warm and soothing light and Granny lets slip that she thinks it might have magical properties.

Later that night Noah finds himself unable to sleep. He tosses and turns, worrying about his Dad, until something wonderful happens. The glowing bird leaps from its perch and flutters over to the bed. She introduces herself as the Starbird and gently talks to him until he feels calmer. She offers up a glowing feather to help him feel brave and Noah starts to feel a little better.

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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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Brothers
by Harriet Evans & Andrés Landazábal

This lovely little hardback celebrates the brilliance of brothers big and small.

The gentle rhyme and wonderfully diverse illustrations give us a detailed look at what the world is like with a brother at your side.  They are playmates and mentors, mess-makers and occasional tormentors but whatever you face in life you know that your brother will always be by your side.

We see that all families are different and a brother doesn’t just mean someone with whom you share both parents. Half-brothers and step-brothers are equally special and even our friends can become like brothers to us. The bond between siblings is strong and you will always be there for each other, whether you are near or far.

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Kindness Makes Us Strong
by Sophie Beer

You’ve probably spotted that I’ve shared quite a few books about kindness of late. With Ivy starting school last week we have been spending a lot of time talking about friendship, specifically around being kind and sharing and I’ve been using books as a way to get those conversations started.

This brightly coloured board book teaches children that kindness doesn’t have to involve great sweeping gestures. Whether it’s waving hello to someone you know, sharing your favourite food, taking turns, or giving someone a cuddle, it’s the little things which count.

Featuring a diverse group of children in familiar, everyday situations, the simple text and heartwarming illustrations clearly show how a good deed can make someone’s day and help to make the community stronger.

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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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