Can you smell it? The end of the year is almost here – Christmas is just around the corner! The days are getting longer, the weather hotter and the evenings light enough to sit for hours and enjoy great books together. Lucky for you a whole range of great picture books were released in October. We have informative texts about animals (alive and extinct) and brilliant people, and stories about wonderful things. Settle in to the comfy chair and enjoy the October 2018 Picture Book Roundup!
The Bee Book – Charlotte Milner
You probably know that bees are amazing little creatures, but do you know just how amazing they really are? The Bee Book is packed full of facts all about bees, such as: one teaspoon of honey is the lifetime’s work of 12 honey bees.
The incredible facts are engaging for curious toddlers (and interested parents), and the illustrations add greatly to the enjoyment of this book.
Fixer the Robot – John Kelly
Fixer is a helpful robot. He is caring, thoughtful and selfless. When other robots are in need of help, he gives his own parts so that they can continue on with their work. Exhausted after a productive day of helping other robots, Fixer suddenly finds himself in a world of trouble. It doesn’t look good for poor Fixer, until the robots that he has helped come on the scene.
Fixer the Robot is packed full of colourful, detailed pictures and is great for learning about friendship and the importance of helping others.
Why I Love Summer – Michael Wagner and Tom Jellett
How good is Summer? Michael Wagner and Tom Jellett think it’s so good that it’s worth dedicating a whole picture book to. Why I Love Summer is a celebration of the Aussie summer. Long, hot days, everyone off work and school, pools, beaches, dinner outside and endless nights playing with family and friends.
I felt more than a little nostalgic about my own suburban Australian childhood reading this book. Looking at the pictures I found my own great memories came flooding back. The overall message is that the best thing about Summer is that the family is together all the time, which sounds good to me.
A Monster in My House – The Umbilical Brothers and Johan Potma
A Monster in My House is exactly the kind of picture book you would expect from the legendary Umbilical Brothers – quirky, humorous, and a completely unexpected ending that will make you go right back to the start again. The illustrations by Johan Potma are wonderfully detailed, with plenty to see on each page. In fact, it is the wonderful illustrations that make the twist in this story work so well.
Dictionary of Dinosaurs – Diester Braun, edited by Dr Mathew G Baron
Wonderfully illustrated, Dictionary of Dinosaurs contains hundreds of dinosaurs from Aardonyx to Zuniceratops. With a set format used for each dinosaur and an illustration of each, Dictionary of Dinosaurs is a great introduction to reference books, and on a topic that fascinates many, many toddlers. The introduction to this book is fascinating. It explains what dinosaurs are, the timeline of dinosaurs, how scientists group dinosaurs together based on how they would have looked and behaved, as well as explaining how to use the book. This book will be cherished by dinosaur lovers great and small.
The A-Z of Wonder Women: 26 Inspiring, Empowering, Incredible Women – Yvonne Lin
We all need people to look up to and admire. The A-Z of Wonder Women celebrates a whole alphabet of trailblazing and ground breaking women from around the world, through time and across fields. Fully illustrated, this book describes how women have flown to the Moon; won the highest prizes in science and maths; led countries, armies and much more, often against overwhelming odds.
The introduction to this books is moving and passionate. “There are thousands upon thousands of books and movies about famous athletes, scientists, artists and explorers – but they’re almost all men. Whatever a little boy wants to pursue, he sees the paths to success. What role models does Roni (the author/illustrator’s daughter) have? Girls get princesses and mermaids…and when women do excel in fields other than princess-ing and mermaid-ing their accomplishments get pink-washed.” It highlights the need for this book and books like it perfectly.
You can find The A-Z of Wonder Women: 26 Inspiring, Empowering, Incredible Women on the Hachette website.
Bonnie and Ben Rhyme Again – Mem Fox and Judy Horacek
Mem Fox and Judy Horacek’s Good Night, Sleep Tight has been on high rotation in our house for a long time. Hannah adores the rhymes and simple, but engaging pictures. Bonnie and Ben Rhyme Again features the same much-loved characters – Bonnie, Ben and Skinny Doug, on a new adventure through rhymes. In this adventure, Bonnie and Ben go walking with Skinny Doug. Along the way they spot many scenes from well-known rhymes. There is even a cameo from another Fox and Horacek favourite.
When You’re Going to the Moon – Sasha Beekman and Vivienne To
I adore picture books with strong, determined, creative female characters. After all, the little girl with whom I am sharing these stories is all of those things, and it is great for her to see characters like herself in print.
When a young girl decides she is going to the moon, there is no stopping her. She knows just what to pack (including “bendy soup spoon” and “inflatable moose”) and exactly how to get there. Most importantly, she believes that she can.
While When You’re Going to the Moon is beautifully illustrated and a gorgeous story, it is the message in the final few pages that is unexpected, powerful and, frankly, important. A book to cherish.
The TinyWing Fairies Suzanne Barton
The Tiny Wing Faries is an adventure for fairy-lovers everywhere. When a strange noise wakes up one, then the rest of the TinyWing Faries, they have to investigate. Along the way they meet some friends, and when the source of the commotion is discovered, the friends band together to help a fairy-in-need out.
Stories for Kids Who Dare to be Different – Ben Brooks
The blurb on the back states: More extraordinary true stories of amazing boys and girls, women and men, who broke the mould and changed the world for better. Have the courage to be yourself and dreams might come true….
That pretty well sums up this book – brief, child-friendly biographies of over 100 amazing people from human history. If you are searching for role models to inspire your little people, then this book is a great place to start.
The Rabbit, The Dark and the Biscuit Tin – Nicola O’Byrne
What is the most sensible thing to do if night time is approaching, but you don’t feel tired? Trap The Dark in a biscuit tin, of course. That was the plan for Rabbit, at least, and it seemed to work quite well. Without The Dark, Rabbit didn’t have to go to bed. However, he soon begins to realise that The Dark is important. Other animals need night time, plants need night time… even rabbits need night time. What’s more, The Dark can be pretty amazing, if you pay enough attention.
An Anthology of Intriguing Animals – Ben Hoare
Planet Earth is an amazing place, full of amazing things. An Anthology of Intriguing Animals is a great way for curious toddlers to get interested in the animal world. It features over 100 intriguing animals. Each double page contains a giant, (usually) colourful photo of an animal, as well as a drawing and some information about it. It is a captivating book for toddlers and, if I’m honest, parents too.