I spy plum pie…

What to do on a rainy summer holiday Thursday? Bake a plum pie, of course. And not just any plum pie – the plum pie from one of our favourite picture books, Each Peach Pear Plum. Janet Ahlberg’s toothsome illustrations have been taunting us with their buttery perfection ever since we first began reading Allan […]

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Breakfast with bears, lunch with a lion or dinner with ducks?

So which’ll it be? That dining dilemma is just one of the quandaries that fill John Burningham’s stand-alone sequel to his 40-year-old classic, Would You Rather. More Would You Rather brings to the page the same anarchic humour and whimsical, personality-packed pictures that first endeared its predecessor to children and adults alike. The formula remains […]

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More trees, please!

Meet Red. She’s brave and sensible, adventurous and kind, and really good at problem solving. Your new favourite heroine, in other words. Her story begins one morning when she decides she must catch a wolf. Donning hunting hat and boots, grabbing a well-stocked lunch box and flinging her popgun over her shoulder, she sets off […]

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You don’t have to ROAR to be heard

It’s not every day that a children’s book brings the mighty, much-missed Leonard Cohen to mind, but that’s what happened when my daughter and I sat down to read Ed Vere’s latest. Not only is its protagonist a poetry-writing lion named Leonard, he just happens to be best friends with a duck called Marianne (as […]

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Bright lights, scary city

Picture books are strewn with plucky rodents, none more so than The Spectacular City‘s Mouse. Mouse lives with his best friend Bear in the woods, in a little house in the trunk of a tree. From their window, they can see the glimmer of the city lights, and one evening, Mouse can resist their twinkly […]

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Whiffy dog, sniffy dog…

Earlier this year, children’s telly veteran Michael Whaite diligently pitched up to the Penguin Random House 2018 showcase, where industry insiders were wooed with tea and cocktails (cupcakes, too), and handed tote bags to fill with classics and new publications alike, all stacked enticingly. But first came the presentations, including a quirky, intensely charming monologue […]

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If you buy just one picture book this summer…

Make it Allan Ahlberg’s latest, Baby On Board. The story is enchanting. A baby is taken to the beach with his big sisters, their friends, and a dog or two. They’ve packed rounds of sandwiches and lashings of lemonade, balls and a kite. It’s the kite that causes all the trouble because when its string […]

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