Tags and Fun

Cover Reveal: The Raven Heir by Stephanie Burgis

This is perhaps the most exciting thing I’ve ever been asked to do on the blog: a cover reveal for The Raven Heir, the new middle grade fantasy from one of my all-time favourite authors, Stephanie Burgis!

I’ve been lucky enough to read an early copy of this gorgeous new book and let me tell you, if you’re a fan of magical adventures, fabulously capable heroines, and wonderfully atmospheric magic, this is a book you need to know about! The blurb is just below, but first of all, let’s take a look at this stunning cover, with artwork by Petur Atli Antonsson and lettering by David Dean.

TRIPLETS. ONE OF THEM IS HEIR TO THE THRONE. BUT WHICH ONE?

Cordelia, Rosalind and Giles. They have lived in the tower all their lives, protected by their mother’s enchantments. Only Cordelia’s magic lets her steal moments of freedom – over the walls in the shape of a bird or beneath them as a scurrying mouse. The eldest of the three is heir to the Raven Throne of Corvenne – a land no one can rule for long and hope to live. Only their mother knows which is the true heir, and she will do anything to keep them hidden. But one day, thanks to Cordelia, destiny finds them.

The Raven Heir is an unbelievably epic new middle-grade fantasy. With incredible shapeshifting magic and unforgettable characters, readers will be hooked from the first page.

Doesn’t that just make you want to jump in right now? I know I would have absolutely fallen in love with this book as a child, and 100% would have begged my mum to make me a dress like Cordelia’s (to be honest, I still might!). If this stunning cover has tempted you, you can preorder The Raven Heir on the Bookshop.org site or from your local independent bookshop, and then it’s just a case of managing to wait until the 5th August to read it!

Book Reviews

Kitten Corner: Illustrated Books for Slightly Older Readers!

I have just a few books in today’s Kitten Corner round-up, but I think that this is one of my favourite kinds of book – gorgeous, informative picture books with tons of detail for confident readers who need a bit more meat in their stories! All of these books were sent to me for review, but that doesn’t affect my opinions!

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Book Reviews

Kitten Corner: More Interactive Books!

Flaps are still king in this house, so here’s a round-up of a few new board books with fun interactive elements! All the books in this post were sent to me for review, but all opinions are my own (or accurately reported, in the case of my little one!).

Hatch and Grow by Isabel Otter, illustrated by Pau Morgan

Published by Little Tiger on 4th March 2021 and 1st April 2021 respectively

The books in the Little Nature series are made of 100% recycled board, which is genius – as a parent I’m very concerned about the amount of plastic and other waste babies and toddlers create. It seems pretty much unavoidable, so I’m thrilled that this series proves that something more eco-friendly is possible, and it definitely doesn’t mean the quality of the books has been sacrificed – these are beautifully made and feel substantial. I love the more muted colours that come from being printed on the recycled paper, and the cutouts make this fab for a baby who likes to be in control of page turning. There are a couple of sentences on each page which offer simple facts, as well as the lovely illustrations, and I appreciate the nature themes; Hatch looks at four creatures who hatch from eggs (chicks, tadpoles, caterpillars, and turtles) and Grow focuses on plants and the animals and people who grow them (a squirrel plants an acorn; bees pollinate flowers; a bird drops a blackberry; a boy plants a tree). They’re calm, beautiful books, and will inspire curiosity about the natural world from the very beginning.

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Book Reviews

Kitten Corner: Funny Picture Books!

This time on Kitten Corner I wanted to take a look at a few of the funniest new picture books we’ve been reading recently! If you’re after zany situations and humour-filled illustration, then read on for some of my favourites from the last couple of weeks.

As always with these posts, any books I received for review will be marked with a *, but the fact they were sent to me doesn’t affect my opinions!

Don’t Mess with Duck! by Becky Davies and Emma Levey*

Published 4th March 2021 by Little Tiger

Duck just wants some peace and quiet, but every pond he tries is filled with irritating neighbours! He’ll have to learn to compromise and tolerate others if he wants to settle down somewhere… The story is good fun, with a lovely moral about making friends and not demanding the impossible. The art is hilarious, as Duck tries pond after pond to find his sanctuary – I particularly loved seeing him bothered by macaques in the hot spring! I feel like this would be great for fans of Oi Frog! and its sequels – it’s not a rhyming book, but the combination of grumpiness, humour, and rules just gives me a similar vibe. It’s a lot of fun!

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Tags and Fun

Blog Tour: The Magic Place

I’m so happy to be part of the blog tour for beautiful new middle grade adventure The Magic Place! Anything with a magical cat character is going to be a hit in my book, and this story is a really fun and entertaining read – it’s almost what you’d get if you crossed The Twits with A Little Princess, but of course with an added (and wonderful!) feline companion. Tomte was especially keen to get his paws on it, as you can see…

For my stop on the tour, author Chris Wormell has kindly given us a glimpse into his writing process, and, most importantly, an introduction to the friendship between our heroine Clementine and her cat, Gilbert!

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Book Reviews

Kitten Corner: Books About Feelings!

This time on Kitten Corner I’m featuring a selection of books that look at a range of emotions, good and bad, through sweet animal stories. If you’d have asked me a couple of months ago, I would have said that was quite a narrow niche to find books in, but it just so happens we’ve read quite a few recently! As always with these posts, any books I received for review will be marked with a *, but the fact they were sent to me doesn’t affect my opinions.

Love by Emma Dodd*

Board book published on 14th January 2021by Nosy Crow

Oh, this is one that will make you cry if it hits you on the right day! This is a sweet, simple rhyming book that describes lots of different things that love is all about, accompanied by beautiful art of two rabbits, a baby and an adult. There are no genders assigned to either rabbit, and no explicit mention of who the adult rabbit is to the child (except in the blurb, where it says “mummy”, but I wouldn’t tend to read that with a child), so this would be a beautiful one to read together no matter what your relationship to your young reading partner is – mum, dad, grandparent, or any other caretaker, this book makes it clear that love is simple and pure and brilliant. It’s a beautiful book in both sentiment and illustration, and one I’ll be buying for many people, I think.

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Book Reviews

Kitten Corner: Non-fiction For Babies!

For this instalment of Kitten Corner I wanted to highlight some of the beautiful non-fiction books we’ve been enjoying recently. While I do love a good story, there are some wonderful books out there that look at interesting topics like wildlife and history, and they can be just as gorgeously designed and illustrated, and just as captivating, as fiction!

As always with these posts, books marked with a * were sent to me free of charge by the publisher.

The Castle The King Built by Rebecca Colby, illustrated by Tom Froese*

Published 14th January 2021 by Nosy Crow

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