Book Reviews

Kitten Corner: Animal Books!

I realised the other day that a lot of the books we’ve been reading recently have had an animal theme, so here’s a little round up! All of these books were sent to me for review by Little Tiger Books, but that doesn’t affect my opinions.

Sea by Patricia Hegarty and Britta Teckentrup

This book is full of gorgeous underwater scenes and enchanced with cool cut-outs that reveal different creatures on each page, which makes it feel full of depth and mystery! It’s accompanied by rhyming text that tells you a bit about each of the fish and animals, and has an overt moral about keeping the sea clean to protect ocean life, which is very important. All the sea creature favourites are here, from sharks to manatees, and kids will love spotting them in the detailed background as well as when they’re the focus. A very pretty read!

You Are My Happiness by Patricia Hegarty and Thomas Elliott

An adorable tale of a baby tortoise and his mother, told only in dialogue and making use of clever flaps and cut-outs to change up elements of each scene as they talk to each other. It’s a little bit of a tear-jerker if you’re feeling hormonal, as the love between them is a real focus, and it’s terribly sweet, so if you’re an easy crier like me, watch out! I love the sense of wonder you can feel from the baby as they go about their day, finding things like a swarm of butterflies – it’s just a lovely little read.

Octopants by Suzy Senior and Claire Powell

What is it that makes octopus books so good? One of my favourites to read is Octopus Shocktopus (review here), and now Octopants is up there too! It’s an absolutely hilarious story of an octopus who can’t find any underwear that fits him, told in rollicking rhyme that’s a delight to read aloud. The punchline is genuinely funny (to a sleep-deprived me, at least!) and the art is full of humorous details too – I love the barnacles in bobble hats! Plus, even though my photo doesn’t show it very well, the entire cover is stunning royal blue foil. This is a definite favourite for me!

First Nature: Ladybird by Harriet Evans and Bryony Clarkson

This super cute rhyming non-fiction book is full of facts about ladybirds, one of the cutest insects. I love that each page is a different shape at the top, which really adds interest, and there are differently-shaped flaps on each spread too. Each flap reveals a change to the scene, and an accompanying ladybird fact, which is a really nice way to add more detail to the main text, and I learned a few things I didn’t know! It’s not the sturdiest book we own, which is down to the flap design – I find flaps are better when they’re either fabric glued in (like in the Where’s Mrs…? series) or when they’re pages that turn separately at the hinge, like with You Are My Happiness above, as these inset paper ones get a little bit tatty when used by grabby little hands, but I do like the look of how these flaps are incorporated, so it would be perfect for slightly older toddlers!

An Alphabet of Animals by Linda Tordoff and Harriet Evans

This lift-the-flaps alphabet book is simple, but lovely! Each letter lifts up to reveal an animal underneath, with some weird and wonderful choices to keep you guessing! The stylised animals would make lovely art for display if you could get them on posters – they’re almost paper-cutty, which is so cute! As with Ladybird above, the paper flaps are slightly too delicate for very little hands, but for slightly older toddlers this is a beautiful book.

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