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Books we love


Trying to find books that are engaging and the right age range for a child can be tricky, so we've put together some suggestions to help you find the best books for young children.


Dog, Cat and Bunny



ISBN: 9781405265324

Why we love this book

What a fun and deliciously unexpected approach to ABC we have in this book by Lee Singh and Karen Wall. Follow the little mouse, who we first glimpse in a cute lenticular on the cover, through the pages as we meet each letter of the alphabet.

'A is for Apple, B is for Bite! C is for Call, D is for Dial....' With each letter, we have a flap to lift, a tab to pull or a hidden picture to uncover.

There were some novelties that stood out for us, like the P for orange peel which finds mouse pulling the peel across a page, or the W for wash with clothes spinning around in a machine, but of course it's the book as a whole that works so well. A great introduction to the sounds of the alphabet.


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Peekaboo Little Roar Board Book

Peekaboo Little Roar Board Book

Jo Lodge
Hodder Children's Books
ISBN: 9781444904789

Why we love this book

We were already fans of Jo Lodge's Mr Croc novelty books so we were pleased to see the first book in a new series from her, Peekaboo Little Roar, a 'pull, push and play' book.

Peekaboo is a favourite game for most young children so they will quickly grasp the idea of Little Roar playing peekaboo with his friends in these pages. On each spread, you are given tabs to pull to make Little Roar and his friends appear through the game of peekaboo, but the tabs also make flowers, butterflies and other colourful creatures appear.

The overall effect is pages filled with colour and movement, giving young children aged naught to two years lots to explore and making it another firm favourite of ours.


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Lulu Reads to Zeki

Lulu Reads to Zeki

Anna McQuinn
Alanna Books
ISBN: 9781907825057

Why we love this book

A perfect story to share with a young child that explores all the disruptions that a new baby can bring to family life. Lulu's mother is expecting a baby and when he arrives, Lulu finds she has a new role as a big sister.

Lulu's parents have always read to her, so when the baby is crying, she finds him a funny story; when he is in the bath, she reads him her favourite duck book; and when he needs a new nappy, she reads him her favourite potty book.

Naturally, there is always time at the end of the day for a story for them both.


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Baby Can Bounce!

Baby Can Bounce!

Lynne Chapman
Egmont Books Ltd
ISBN: 9781405258319

Why we love this book

Baby Can Bounce is a playful and enjoyable approach to helping a very young child discover all the things that he / she can do - Baby can bounce, dig, clap, smile and so on, with each page dedicated to a different activity.

It is a deceptively simple book that is perfect to share with very young children who are at the start of their learning journeys. The focus on activities means that the reader can share each sound and action with the child as they also enjoy the very exuberant drawings on each page.

A lovely way to start a child's reading journey, too, and if they enjoyed this one then they will also love Baby Goes Baaa, a sister title that celebrates all the different sounds that babies and toddlers can make.


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ISBN: 9780141380773

Why we love this book

The beautifully nostalgic Baby's Catalogue by the famous Ahlberg duo has just been republished to celebrate its 30th anniversary.

The 'catalogue' comprises pages of images based on five families, with each page loosely following set themes such as playtime, eating, bath time and bedtime.

The deliciously drawn babies dominate the pages – there is no writing – so a parent and child can follow the images and describe what is happening.

Young children will enjoy exploring familiar things in their life – a washing machine, radio or potty, to name a few. And there is nothing a baby likes more than looking at pictures of other babies!

If you enjoy this, you may also want to explore companion board books such as Peepo! and Each Peach Pear Plum by the same author and illustrator.


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Counting

Counting

Ellen Giggenbach
Templar Publishing
ISBN: 9781848770904

Why we love this book

A gorgeous first counting book that will be enjoyed by tiny tots and toddlers alike thanks to its sumptuous pages and colourful illustrations. It comes as a board book, so it's also very sturdy.

A little boy is going shopping with his mum and along the way they see one car, two houses, three trucks etc. The pages are filled with fabulous detail and each of the spreads includes a number of raised surfaces for children to feel.

The final spread provides an illustrated summary of all the things you’ve seen in the previous pages, from bright red balloons to the boy and mum in a car.


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Jump On Board the Animal Train

Jump On Board the Animal Train

Naomi Kefford
Simon & Schuster Childrens Books
ISBN: 9781847385895

Why we love this book

A clip-clopping, trip-trapping, click-clacking journey to meet the train - Jump on board and off we go!

One little boy is going on a fantastic journey to meet a train. On the way he is joined by bears, elephants, tigers and more - but just wait until the birthday boy reaches the train and discovers the biggest surprise in store!

Children can follow the visual clues on the split pages to guess which animal is coming up next and join in with the different sounds the animals make – the tiger's tail swishes, the bear's paws pad, the elephant's feet plod.

And look out for the cheeky monkeys, the happy hippo and the singing penguins in the final surprise!


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Big Book of My World

Big Book of My World

Kali Stileman
Doubleday Children's Books
ISBN: 9780857530424

Why we love this book

This is a gorgeous book for helping babies aged 1 upwards in exploring the world around them.

The areas covered range from first words and opposites to their favourite things and activities.

All the spreads are bright and colourful with energetic illustrations to help explain the point - sounds, feelings, manners etc.

Our favourite spreads are those encouraging children to find different objects in the picture on the page, including Things in the Park, Home and Town.


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A Day with the Animal Doctors

A Day with the Animal Doctors

Sharon Rentta
Alison Green Books
ISBN: 9781407116440

Why we love this book

Terence is joining his mum for a day at the animal hospital. She’s a doctor, and today Terence is going to be one too.

The picture spreads are full of absorbing details. Look out for the dog with a barky cough, a crocodile who has lost his false teeth, a giraffe with a crick in his neck, and the leopard who has lost his spots.

Doctor Terence discovers that he has wonderful bedside manners (he gives loads of cuddles) and is great at entertaining the patients in the waiting room. But he also finds that putting on bandages and helping give out the patients’ meals is a little more tricky….


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ISBN: 9781408313008

Why we love this book

It's great to see such a lovely, expressive book aimed firmly at this age group in praise of dads.

The story and images are of the familiar, everyday things that dads and toddlers do (and we can’t tell if this toddler is a girl or boy).

We see dad lifting toddler out the mud - but nearly landing in it himself - tossing pancakes, playing air guitar, and in the playground, working hard to entertain his young child.

The illustrations by Emma Dodd are just right, too, and inject all the humour and cosiness that the text implies.


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Peepo! (Board Book)

Peepo! (Board Book)

Allan Ahlberg
Puffin
ISBN: 9780141337425

Why we love this book

This is a special anniversary edition of the classic story that has enthralled countless babies and toddlers over the past 30 years.
Peepo! is a simple story, told in verse, that follows a baby through its day, from breakfast to bathing and bed time.
On each page, a small cut out circle allows the child reader an enticing glimpse of the next page.
he illustrations, which are set in the 1940s, are nostalgic and detailed. The verse often refers to objects hidden in the illustration so that a growing child can revisit the book to explore the images as they get older.


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I Love My Mummy

I Love My Mummy

Giles Andreae
Orchard Books
ISBN: 9781408309575

Why we love this book

This story is written from a child's perspective and focuses on the everyday things that Mum does for her toddler, from cuddles, tickles and kisses to wiping noses and bottoms and stories at bedtime; things that young children will recognise and that make them feel special and loved. We love the humour and affection in this book, we also love the warm, modern illustrations.


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ISBN: 9781407106687

Why we love this book

This is a gloriously colourful and exotic counting book and young children will love its humour.

First, the counting; 'One fluffy baa-lamb' and 'ten hairy caterpillars' become 'Two racing-car-lambs, nine skitter-scatterpillars' and so we go on until we get down to one caterpillar and ten fluffy baa-lambs.

What will capture children's attention, though, is the humour - for example, 'seven blah-blah-blah lambs' chatting on their mobiles alongside 'four chitter-chatter caterpillars'.

The finale is an impressive pop-up involving 'ten rock-guitar-lambs and one bash-and-clatterpillar'. What a great way to learn numbers.


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ISBN: 9781406323702

Why we love this book

Sunhat, camera, books - Maisy is packing for holiday and she's very excited. The story shows Maisy on her journey from the train station and all the way to the sea. There's lots for Maisy to do at the beach and she loves staying in the hotel.

Like the other Maisy 'first experiences' book, this is a brightly coloured, simple introduction to going on holiday that glances at all the exciting things to do while staying by the sea with an emphasis on friendship, fun and activities.

It is a gentle and reassuring book for any small child who is about to enjoy their first holiday - or to reflect on their experiences once they are home.


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Hide and Seek First Words

Hide and Seek First Words

DK
DK Children
ISBN: 9781405351737

Why we love this book

This is an enticing book of surprising and colourful photographic spreads that encourage toddlers to learn a variety of everyday words and objects.

Each spread is themed according to the everyday world of a toddler, including clothes, vehicles, bathtime or animals. The images are on the left of the page and children are challenged to find the same image in the photographic picture on the right of the page. When they find the object, they say the word.

This book is for sharing during the day when young toddlers are looking for a challenge and an exercise that will keep a carer's attention fully on their achievements. Great fun, and beautifully presented.


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ISBN: 9781408300459

Why we love this book

Mr Pusskins gets in touch with his emotions as he helps to explain feelings ...Mr Pusskins has a giant cake all to himself -- lucky thing! But poor Little Whiskers wants a bit SO much that she accidently-on-purpose falls directly into it! Follow the twosome as they whizz through a whole gamut of emotions until happiness is finally restored and the delicious cake is shared! Learn all about feelings with the irresistible Mr Pusskins. Each of the Mr Pusskins board books are packed with Sam Lloyd's trademark wit and humour -- perfect for even the very youngest Mr Pusskins fans.


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ISBN: 0141384867

Why we love this book

The simple text and graphic (but sturdy) novelties in this book will entice any young child to follow it through. The book describes chick's first day, from emerging from its shell to going to sleep with mummy.


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ISBN: 1846861551

Why we love this book

A fun way to introduce children to some favourite and less familiar rhymes. The book includes suggested actions and a CD with each rhyme played to music. Ideal for babies, toddlers and preschoolers.


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ISBN: 190451359X

Why we love this book

This book-based 'play centre' offers lots of touch, sound and play elements for young children to explore.


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ISBN: 0141500034

Why we love this book

An appealing story for toddlers and preschoolers who are discovering independence. It is also a very useful story to share with young children who have a new younger sibling in the household.


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ISBN: 1846167051

Why we love this book

An exuberant collection of poems about animals in the jungle that young children will love returning to again and again. The poems are by Giles Andreae, also known as Purple Ronnie.


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ISBN: 1841210803

Why we love this book

A wonderful book for young children who enjoy tractors, trains and anything involving transport. Other titles by Margaret Mayo include 'Choo Choo Clickety Clack' and 'Emergency!'.


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ISBN: 0141501596

Why we love this book

This is a gentle, rhythmic introduction to colours, illustrated by the creator of the classic story, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, which is also recommended for toddlers and preschool children.


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ISBN: 1845078101

Why we love this book

A tale of consequences for younger and older children who love saying 'No'.


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ISBN: 0007177658

Why we love this book

This is one of a series of titles about Duck, who gets into all sorts of scrapes and adventures but always wins through in the end. We like this title because of the interactivity provided by the hunt for the key. Great for toddlers and upwards.


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ISBN: 0552548332

Why we love this book

This book is great for older toddlers and preschool children. The rhymes make it a real page-turner and children will love the wacky humour - and the pants!


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ISBN: 1843629917

Why we love this book

This is a fun, rhyming picture book that toddlers can grow with as they learn the sounds each animal makes. They will enjoy creating the sounds with the reader.


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ISBN: 1844284913

Why we love this book

A lovely story to share with young children who can't sleep. The repetitive text is soothing and the illustrations charming.


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ISBN: 0721499317

Why we love this book

You cannot introduce books to babies too soon and this makes a wonderful, thoughtful gift for a new born baby. The strong black and white illustrations will help baby's eyes to focus
and will introduce them to the concept of looking at images on each 'page' (the book is made of cloth).


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ISBN: 074605159X

Why we love this book

The 'That's not my...' (truck, kitten, dragon etc) touchy feely series from Usborne is a perennial favourite. Young babies love exploring the 'touch and feel' elements and these are a great introduction to books.


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ISBN: 1405091215

Why we love this book

Rod Campbell's 'Dear Zoo' books have been in print for many years and we enjoyed this pop-up version which introduces an early element of interactivity for young children.


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ISBN: 1904550835

Why we love this book

Which baby doesn't enjoy playing 'peek-a-boo'? Enjoy sharing some traditional nursery games with your young child. Other books from Child's Play include See-Saw and Pat-a-Cake nursery rhymes.


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ISBN: 067088278X

Why we love this book

Another all-time classic that can be shared with very young children but also enjoyed as they grow older. Children will enjoy spotting the nursery rhyme characters hiding on each page.


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ISBN: 1406314420

Why we love this book

Another of our favourites thanks to its brightly coloured pages and simple text. If your child enjoys this, there is also a large-sized picture book they can move on to when they are a little older, which comes with a DVD.


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ISBN: 1846469082

Why we love this book

Bright colours and bold spreads with 'touch and feel' elements mean there is lots for young hands and eyes to explore on these pages.


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Book of the week

Children of Blood and Bone

Tomi Adeyemi

Children of Blood and Bone

~ Babies & Toddlers
~ Pre School
~ Early Readers
~ Confident Readers
~ Young Adult

Meet the Author


Sue Hendra and Paul Linnet, the duo behind hilarious picture books Supertato and Barry the Fish with Fingers, tell us about their latest creation, CAKE!

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