Welcome to the February Children’s book round up. This month there is an excellent selection of books for toddlers, pre-schoolers and even something for the primary schoolers.
Disclosure – these books were provided to Blog of Dad free of charge for the February 2019 Children’s Book Roundup. For further information, please visit my disclosure statement.
Lola Dutch When I Grow Up – Kenneth and Sarah Jane Wright
Lola Dutch is back! This time she is trying to decide what she wants to be when she grows up. In true Lola Dutch style she explores options in an energetic flurry of enthusiasm and creativity. She could be a magnificent performer, a daring inventor, or a brilliant botanist. She can’t decide, it’s all too much! Maybe she doesn’t need to decide right now. “I just want to be a kid and learn about everything.”
An high energy story about the joy and excitement of exploring the world of possibilities that are out there for the future – and enjoying the now.
Bat vs Poss – Alexa Moses and Anil Tortop
Meek the possum lives happily in a tree by a row of terraces with her three sisters and a host of other birds, insects and reptiles. When rude, crude and uncouth Squabbles the bat moves in, life in the tree takes a turn for the worse. He spits and shrieks and burps and poos and make like a misery for all in the tree. (You know things are dire when a miner bird thinks your behaviour is bad!) Finally Meek the possum and the animals in the tree band together to rid the tree of Squabbles the bat. As a very sad Squabbles hobbles away, the animals extend a second chance… if he is willing to share.
Bat vs Poss is a fun rhyming story about sharing and making friends. As an aside, when it comes to insults this book gets creative – from tiresome freak to crazy bat-guy, yes folks, they are all here.
We Eat Bananas – Katie Abey
Hannah loves We Wear Pants. She has spent hours looking at all the details, finding all the features and telling us about what she sees. It is unsurprising that there has been much delight in our house at the arrival of We Eat Bananas. We Eat Bananas has oh so much to explore. Across 12 busy, brightly illustrated double page spreads the readers are invited to choose their favourite foods and how they like to eat them. There is lots of fun to be had spotting all the interesting happenings in the illustrations – a rabbit-shaped carrot in the carrot patch, a giraffe slurping it’s spaghetti, animals sharing a sandwich and much, much more.
The Hug – Eoin McLaughlin and Polly Dunbar
This clever little book is a sheer delight. Two parallel stories that collide in the middle. Starting at one end we hear of sad tortoise searching for a hug to help him feel better. No-one will hug tortoise, his shell is too hard “But don’t worry” counsels a wise owl “There is someone for everyone.” Flipping the book upside down and starting at the other end of the book we read a similar tale, but this time it is spikey hedgehog’s fruitless search for a hug to help him feel less sad. And then their stories collide in the middle and they hug, “As happy as a hug can make you… As happy as two someones can be.”
A Stack of Alpacas – Matt Cosgrove
A Stack of Alpacas is another wonderfully fun instalment in Matt Cosgrove’s Macca the Alpaca series. This time we meet Macca’s nieces and nephews as they get up to mischief and then learn to take responsibility and help with chores. As always, the simple, rhyming text and funny and fun illustrations make it a joy to read aloud with the little people in your life.
Der Glumph Went The Little Green Frog – Matt Shanks
As the well-loved children’s song tells us, we all know frogs go la-di-da-di-da, they don’t go der glumph der glumph der glumph. But how do the echidna, the penguin, the kangaroo, the turtle, the bird go? Find out in this captivatingly illustrated, rollicking story that you won’t be able to help but sing along too!
Little People, Big Dreams Stephen Hawking – Ma Isabel Sanchez Vergara and Matt Hunt
This is an engaging book that truly captures the essence of Stephen Hawking’s life and his contributions to our understanding of the universe. The depth yet brevity of the story is well balanced and is superbly complimented by the illustrations – it almost feels like you are watching a movie. The story does not omit the existential challenges Stephen Hawking’s faced during his life, including being told by doctors (at age 21) that a rare disease was paralysing his body and he had only two more years to live. As such, parents will want to introduce the book at an age where their child’s understanding is at a suitable level to discuss any questions that may arise.
This is our first book from the ‘Little People, Big Dreams’ book and we are excited to read more!
Human Body – A Children’s Encyclopaedia – DK
This children’s Encyclopaedia is simply stunning. Filled with coloured double page spreads with engaging illustrations and diagrams, interesting facts from history and modern biological sciences and the fundamentals of all key areas relating to the human body. With over 200 pages, it covers topics about the physical body such as bones and muscles, heart and blood, lungs and breathing, but is also covers body related topics such as mind and personality. The Human Body – A Children’s Encyclopaedia will be a much loved reference book throughout the primary school years.
Mallee Sky – Jodi Toering and Tannya Harricks
A powerful and emotive story of Australian drought. Mallee Sky is brimming with both the wonder and harshness of nature in typical Australian countryside. Both the text and the illustrations are magnificent, capturing the features of the Australian country landscape and life in an Australian farming town with poignant beauty.
“The wind is too hot and tired to raise more than a whisper through the eucalypts.” Simply stunning.
Hello Lighthouse – Sophie Blackall
On the highest rock of a tiny island at the edge of the world stands an old fashioned lighthouse with lens and an oil light with a wick and a lighthouse keeper. This is a charming and melodic story of the rhythm of the lighthouse keeper’s life through the seasons of both weather and life events.
Through the Smoke – Phil Cummings and Andrew McLean
Three kids are out on an adventure in the Australian bush landscape. They are off to their ancient castle, Everdell, swinging on rope swings, sliding down dusty banks and jousting with dust armies along their way. Suddenly their fun adventure takes a very serious turn. A bushfire has broken out. Can they make it to Everdell before the fire reaches them? Will they be safe within its walls.
A captivating story of a quintessentially Australian children’s adventure, playing in the bush and the sometimes fierce and unpredictable nature of our environment.