Title: Guess How Much I Love You Book & Baby Cards: A Baby Milestone Gift Set
Author: Sam McBratney
Illustrations: Anita Jeram
Publisher: Walker Books
Genre: Children’s picture book, Baby set
Description: This enchanting board book comes with 24 gorgeous cards for recording important milestones in your baby’s life. Simply take a photo of your little one with the card for a beautiful way to capture and share memories.
Title: All At Sea: There’s a New Baby in the Family
Author: Gerry Byrne
Illustrator: Faye Hanson
Publisher: Walker Books
Genre: Children’s picture book
Description: When Liam’s mum and dad bring his baby brother home from the hospital, they give Liam a family of hippos – a mummy hippo, a daddy hippo, two little hippos and a tiny baby hippo. the littlest hippo keeps going missing and every night Liam has bad dreams…
I received some lovely book post recently from the wonderful people at Walker Books. It’s a mixture of both children’s and teen books and I can’t wait to read them! 😀 I hope you like the look of some of these titles.
First for the children’s books, a mix of board books, paper picture books and a gift set! (descriptions from a brief email from Walker Books):
Description: Once upon a time there was a Happy Family. Then, one horrible, NO GOOD day, a new ruler was born…BEHOLD – His Royal Highness King Baby!
My Review: This is a funny book with a great message and is perfect for any kids with younger siblings who may sometimes feel jealous of the attention they’re getting. ‘His Royal Tinyness: A Terrible True Story’ is about A4 in height although wider than a typical A4 piece of paper. The hardback book comes with a sleeve which has some lovely bronze shiny outlines on the cover. Inside the book is filled with thick matt pages with lots of colourful illustrations and text.
The story is a simple one and is told by the little girl in the book. She starts by telling us how there was once a happy family with a mom, dad, a gerbil and her, a wonderful and perfect princess (her). But then a new ruler, King Baby(her baby brother) was born which meant that the princess was no longer cared for by her parents and left to fend for herself in the world. The story is actually very funny and is entirely from the perspective of the little girl who doesn’t like her new baby brother or the way her parents now look after him so much and seem to not care about her at all. She has to cook for herself, and generally take care of herself all alone while her parents are busy with the baby. However the story isn’t quite as true as it first appears and the illustrations show exactly how ‘true’ the little girl’s story is.
The pictures in this book are very funny. I love the way that they show so much detail about what’s really going on, such as all the heavy shopping that the poor princess has to carry (which is actually just one aubergine in a basket while dad carries bags of shopping!). Although most of the pictures are what is actually happening in the family, some pages show the girl’s own drawings and how she perceives how things are. I really like the style of pictures, there’s something about the way the characters look that I just enjoy and I like the hidden extras in each picture, not only of what is really happening with the girl but all the little extra things in the pictures to spot including the gerbil.
Some reviewers haven’t enjoyed this book much, stating that some children wouldn’t enjoy it, but I really have and can see kids enjoying this too although they might need an adult to sit down with them and point out all the little things in the pictures and show kids that the princess isn’t as poor and alone as she thinks. The whole story is about the girl’s imagination, the fact that she says right at the start that she has long flowing hair, when in fact she is wearing yellow tights on her head, shows how the whole story is just a bit of make believe. The ending is funny and has a wonderful message of getting along with younger siblings. I won’t give away the ending but it shows that all is well and kids shouldn’t fear or get upset about having younger brothers or sisters (particularly baby ones) as there’s plenty of good things including the bonus on the last page!
Overall I really liked this book and think it would be great fun for any kids to read. Whether kids ‘get it’ probably depends on how involved an adult is in reading the story with the kids, showing all the fun extras, as well as how creative and imaginative the kids are. I certainly would have enjoyed and understood this book, even as an only child, as I have always been very imaginative and could relate to the girl and her imaginative story telling.
-Thanks to Walker Books for a free copy.
What do you think about this fun way to tackle the subjects of baby brothers and sisters? Would you enjoy reading a book like this? Please let me know your thoughts I’d love to hear from you 🙂 You can also follow me in these places:
Description: When Joseph’s mother comes home, says his father, things are going to change. And almost at once they do – in the weirdest of ways . . .
My Review: I’m not sure what to say about this very surreal and strange book. Joseph Kaye is waiting at home while his dad has gone to pick up his mum. He’s been told things will change but what did his father mean by that? ‘Changes’ is a large book, a bit bigger than A4 in size and filled with thick glossy pages of illustrations and easy to read text.
As Joseph ponders on the question of what will change, his imagination starts coming up with all sorts of things. First he sees the kettle changing its shape. Before he knows it the kettle’s become a cat! Is this what his father meant when he said things were going to change? The whole story follows this similar feel with Joseph left alone to imagine all sorts of things happening.
I really like the illustrations. I’ve always enjoyed Dali’s paintings and Browne’s illustrations take on a similar feel. There are lots of different things happening to the objects around Joseph and it’s interesting just to look at the pictures and spot all the surreal changes going on. Even some very small objects such as a framed photo on top of the television have hidden fun extras that you may not notice the first time you read this book.
Although the illustrations are good, I’m not sure the story will really be understood by kids and it felt a little strange. I’m going to put a spoiler here by telling you that the ending of the book has a twist: That the ‘change’ is that Joseph has a new baby sister which his parents bring home for him to met. This is a good twist but I’m not sure kids will really understand this ending if they are reading it alone.
The illustrations are great in this book and I think many kids will really enjoy looking at the pictures and spotting all the changes that appear, but whether the message in the story will be understood, and whether it’s a good book for discussing a new sibling to children I’m not so sure.
-Thanks to Walker books for a free copy (as part of The Anthony Browne Collection).
What do you think of this book? Do you like surreal books? What about books covering this subject? Let me know your thoughts I’d love to hear from you 🙂 You can also find me in these places: