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Katie studied languages at Cambridge University and soon discovered it wasn’t just French or Italian she loved, but language itself.
Her first job was writing reviews of curry houses in verse. Her second was writing science and business articles. Her third and favourite job is writing educational books for children. She loves tackling new subjects and making them come alive for young readers. So far she has written about everything from trucks and toilets to space and Churchill.
Katie now has two little children of her own and they are definitely her fiercest critics.
All young children will be aware that plastic is causing major problems in the world, so this bright, attractive and informative book is very welcome. It poses all the questions readers will have about plastic including how is it made, why is there so much of it, why is it such a problem, and can we live without it. The answers are revealed by lifting flaps – 60 of them in total – and the information presented is clear and comprehensive, while also showing children that they have the ability to change things. It’s an excellent example of a well-thought out, smartly designed and carefully presented information book, perfectly pitched for its young readership, though I guarantee adult readers will learn something new too.
A really effective ‘how to’ book, this gives readers all the information they’ll need to play chess, while letting them know exactly why it is so popular, and how exciting it is. It explains the pieces and their moves, the aims of the game and means of attack and defence. There are regular reminders of what’s been said and exercises to try. Layout and illustration give it a very friendly feel – the pieces are animated and talk directly to the reader - and there’s extra information slipped in too on the history of the game. A book that will really inspire children to open a chessboard and start playing.
Facts and flaps are an irresistible combination in this illuminating information book. Divided into sections Where, Who, Why, What, How, When and Which, it answers key or quirky questions from history, from ‘where did pirates bury their treasure?’ (answer: they probably didn’t), to ‘why do we study the past?’ (answer: to understand more about the world today and our place in it). Each page is really attractively illustrated and designed, and the format encourages browsing. While it darts about through centuries and cultures, a useful illustrated timeline at the end puts everything in chronological order. Fun and full of information, this is just the thing for inquisitive children. ~ Andrea Reece
What are Stars? is an excellent book for children who love to ask questions. Over a series of six attractive and inviting double pages, featuring little children just like its readers, and with the help of numerous flaps, it explains simply but very clearly just what stars are. From basic information – that stars are bright dots in the night sky – through close ups and just the right level of detail, it teaches children a huge amount, and gives them a really good understanding of what stars are. The flaps are just the right size for small hands and good and sturdy too, and make the gathering of information even more fun. A really effective first book. ~ Andrea Reece
With Tim Peake keeping our attention fixed on the International Space Station children are probably thinking more about space than ever and this attractive book is full of fascinating information. It’s divided by question: Where (e.g. does space begin); What (e.g. are stars made of?); Why; How; Who; Which; and Yes or No? Each page is bright and colourful and clear answers to all the questions posed are revealed under large, sturdy flaps. It’s bound to encourage more questions and to get children wondering more about what space holds for them. There are questions for children themselves to answer on the final page and suggestions for where you can find out more. ~ Andrea Reece
September 2015 Fascinating Facts Book of the Month Five of Kipling’s honest serving-men are represented in this excellent book: on pages dedicated to What, Why, When, How and Where are questions to intrigue young children and, under cleverly shaped sturdy flaps, the answers that just might have stumped their parents. Examples include ‘When did the world begin?’, ‘Where is the South pole?’ and ‘How do bridges stay up?’ There’s no Who, but there is a Which and a Yes or No too, while the book concludes cleverly with some questions that only readers can answer. Flaps and facts will make an irresistible combination for inquisitive children. ~ Andrea Reece
First Reading: Level One. A beautiful re telling of this classic Aesop's fable illustrating the merits of hard work. Level One titles are designed to be the first real books a beginner reader will tackle and are designed to foster a lasting enthusiasm for books and reading. They are 32 pages in length, comprising the main story (up to 150 words), from classic tales to folk tales, delightful illustrations and 6 pages of fun, reading-related puzzles. Will be enjoyed with equal enthusiasm if read alone or together with a parent.
Young Reading: Series Two. The story of Diwali, the Indian festival of lights, from its beginnings in Hindu and Sikh tradition to how it is celebrated today.. 64 pages in length this level is for children whose confidence in reading is developing well. Anything up to 2500 words, these stories use varied sentence lengths, more complex sentence structure and more challenging vocabulary. Mostly broken up by chapters, subjects include classic tales, myths and legends, mystery stories and non-fiction.
Age 5+. Loads of easily accessible information is packed into this attractive interactive information book. Busy spreads draw readers in to explore different aspects of the Earth from where it is in the solar system to the geography you can find on it. And it’s easy to discover more by opening flaps.
Young Reading: Series One. Follows the story of the world’s most popular treat from its origins in the rainforests of Central America to shops and factories everywhere. This level is perfect for children just starting to read confidently on their own. These are 48 pages in length with 1000-1500 words. They use fairly short, simple sentences and everyday vocabulary. Typically, these titles contain several short stories or one longer story divided into chapters. Fables, folk tales, history and contemporary fiction form the mainstay of this level.
Colourful scenes with over 50 flaps to lift reveal fascinating historical details of life in Ancient Rome. Bright, clear illustrations show scenes such as a gladiator fight at the Colosseum, the workings of a Roman Bath and the Roman legion defending the farthest reaches of the Empire.