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Lilac – Level 1 | My Little Friend : Making friends is always fun - especially when your new friend is a cute little caterpillar! But wait - what's this? Where did my little friend go? Growing On Me : Babies are no fun. They're stinky and they cry a lot. What is the point of them? Maybe they're just one of those things that end up growing on you...
Big Sky Mountain is a love letter to nature and the wild, inspired by Alex's own childhood with his grandma in the Malvern Hills, and the woodland and cabin he now owns in Kent. The books have a fictional, non-specified location, but draw on inspiration from the landscape of the Highlands of Scotland as well as the wilderness of North America. Part of a four book series that will span the four different natural environments of Big Sky Mountain, from river to forest to mountain to coast, with stories and adventures set in diverse natural habitats and with different animals.
In a spare, poetic text, Nicola Davies shows how easy it is to label someone as ‘different’ and how easy it is to treat them badly once that has been done. But she also shows how a new child can turn that hostility round by introducing the special things from her own life. Cathy Fisher’s illustrations capture the powerful but understated point of the story perfectly making this apparently quiet book speak volumes.
Will Jakeman is an extraordinary inventor, perhaps the best there has ever been! People come from far and wide to buy his 'Mechanimals' - incredible machines that come to life and perform all sorts of amazing tasks. For example, Steel-Skull the gorilla, perfect for dealing with bullies, and The Armoured Armadillo, a magnificent machine that can barge through most obstacles and is even armed with a gunge gun ... Learn all about Will Jakeman's childhood, the terrible fate of his parents, and discover whether the evil Ida Gripp ever gets her hands on his marvellous mechanimals ...
A postcard-sized version of Debi Gliori's bestselling book. Once upon a time…best-selling illustrator Debi Gliori tells a witty story about cats poking fun at fame and asking if it really has any merit. All the towns on Mull have cats with special attributes, such as being able to sing or fish or being specially soft. As a result, the tourists flock to see them. But one place had no special cats. In Tobermory the cats are just plain ordinary cats and soon no one wants to visit at all. But one ginger cat decided to change all of that. What special trick could he come up with?
This short (44 pages) graphic novel on the life and impact of Rosa Parks – the woman known as the Mother of the Civil Rights Movement in the USA - packs in a huge amount of information simply and clearly. The author commented she decided that It’s Her Story: Rosa Parks would celebrate a lifetime of activism versus a single moment. And that she would depict late nights, setbacks, and moments of doubt so that children … learn that while change is possible, it doesn’t happen overnight. You have to put in the work. This book does just that – it shows with commendable brevity the many sides of the struggles that Rosa and the movement in the USA faced. The story develops as a young girl is taken to see an exhibition by her grandmother – who tells her granddaughter the story of Rosa’s life. The novel is a model of brevity but which packs in the information we all need to know and remember about Rosa and her struggles. Illustrator Shane Clester has produced Graphic novels for Marvel and Nick Jnr, as well as publishing his own picture books. A book that needs to be on book shelves – not only in Black History Month.
As one would expect from a much-lauded artist, past Children’s Laureate and winner of the prestigious Hans Andersen Prize and two Kate Greenaway medals, this is a very beautiful book. But this modern fable has some gentle but poignant messages for young readers. As in many of his books one can safely assume the child represented by young Ernest. Safe and happy with his mum and the rest of the herd but bursting with curiosity about life, and one day he sets off to explore the fascinating jungle. Children will pour over the jungle pages with relish, spotting leopard skin tree trunks, flowers made of fried eggs or even Crème eggs in classic surrealist Browne style. But young Ernest gets increasingly alarmed by the strangeness and finds himself lost. Every child will empathise with the lost child trauma. Ernest is relieved to come upon other animals, but what a disappointment they turn out to be and how marvellously is their boredom and selfish disdain captured. They really cannot be bothered to help or listen – just like some politicians! But somebody does listen- a tiny mouse. Ernest thanks him most politely but does not believe help is possible from this unprepossessing source. Yet he can and does and Ernest and his mum are so happy to be reunited. “And so was the little mouse, as it quietly scurried back into the jungle” Illustrating so perfectly that helpfulness brings its own reward – just as it does for all those carers and NHS staff selflessly giving their time to help. A lovely rewarding read to reflect upon together.
Stuck inside and feeling blue with nothing do to? No problem! With a dash of imagination, everyone’s home and outdoor objects can be transformed into the stuff of adventures, as toddler Tilly and puppy Toby discover in this charismatic picture book that wears its message on its sleeve - “all the fun of outside was already inside their minds”. With Toby confined to the house on account of his poorly paw, and Tilly stuck inside due to a brewing storm, both of them are feeling pretty despondent. Toby paces back and forth by the door while Tilly gazes sadly outside at the “dark, gathering clouds,” until Toby brings her his lead and she’s struck by inspiration. Together they explore every nook and cranny of their house for “all their outdoor belongings,” discovering lots of toys they’d long forgotten about, from roller skates and balls, to bicycles and an old paddling pool. These objects are quickly transformed into the “most amazing, astounding, and spectacular Dog-Walking, Storm-Protecting Machine,” no less! I loved the retro soft-but-scratchy illustrative style that put me in mind of the original 1970s Topsy and Tim books, and the book’s message of having adventures at home has resonance beyond its current COVID-19 relevance - it’s a perennial theme, here delivered through an upfront story with enduring visual charm.
From Caldecott honoree LeUyen Pham, Outside, Inside is a moving picture book celebrating essential workers and the community coming together to face the challenges of the global COVID-19 pandemic. Something strange happened in 2020, just before the seasons changed. Everyone who was outside, went inside. Outside, it was quieter and different. Inside, we laughed, we cried, we baked, we exercised, we kept in touch... and we grew. We remembered to protect the ones we love and love the ones who protect us. We watched with admiration and respect as key workers risked their own wellbeing to help others. We knew that the seasons would change, and spring would come again.
Gramps and Grandad were adventurers. They would surf, climb mountains, and tour the country in their amazing camper. But after Gramps died, Granddad hasn’t felt like travelling anymore. So, their granddaughter comes up with a clever plan to help cheer him up... This beautiful picture book honours love and reminds us not only to remember those we have lost, but to celebrate them.
A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month May 2021 | Award-winning Jeanne Willis perfectly captures a little girl’s excitement and fear as she works up to taking her first solo bike ride. She knows the freedom and exhilaration it will bring but a part of her remains almost too scared to try. Her daddy is reassuring and encouraging and full of good advice about bumps in the road that goes far beyond just the difficulties of bike riding! At last, with daddy to keep her steady she is off! And she is flying! Now it is daddy who is worried…Will his little girl every come back now she’s got this taste of freedom? Tony Ross’s illustrations match the moments of exhilaration and anxiety perfectly making this a joyful celebration of the importance of letting go that will strike a chord for parents and children alike. Daddy, Don't Let Go was originally published in 2012.