Elmer the colourful patchwork elephant has been a nursery favourite since this first book was published in 1989. A modern classic, this picture book is known to millions, and continues to be the strongest seller of the whole series, having sold over 2 million copies around the world. The subtle message is that it is ok to be different.
“A deserved favourite with the 2-5s”. (Sunday Times).
Farmer John’s Tractor
This is a vividly illustrated, satisfying tale of a family stranded in a flood – and a reliable old tractor coming to the rescue. When the rain comes that season, it doesn’t let up, filling the river until it overflows, swirling and rushing and gushing. Down by the river, a car gets stuck, and the family inside shouts for help.
As they climb to the roof, a series of vehicles – a speedy jeep, a strong tow truck, even a noisy fire engine – rush one by one to the scene. But each gets more stuck than the last. Is it possible that Farmer John’s ancient tractor, rusty as it is, could still be up for the job? This is a new machine-based story from the author of Roadworks and Demolition.
It features boisterous rhyming text full of noise and action. It is perfect for reading aloud.
Lizzie Bennet’s Diary
A Review by Frances
“Lizzie Bennet’s Diary” by Marcia Williams is an imaginary diary influenced by Jane Austen’s “ Pride and Prejudice”. Beautifully illustrated with facsimile invitations and notes as well as sketches and small cartoons, this is a wonderful introduction to to Austen’s famous love story. Really for adults or children!
The Middle of Nowhere
A Review by Frances
“The Middle of Nowhere” by Geraldine McCaughrean is set in the Australian outback during the 1890s and tells the story of Comity Pinney aged 11 whose mother is killed by a snake in the washing basket. Her father, Herbert, retreats to his work, overcome by the loss of his dear wife and completely oblivious to the trials of his young daughter. Comity takes over most of the roles her mother fulfilled and for an adult to read about this poor child, stuck without protection in such a harsh environment is quite heartbreaking. Children, made of sterner stuff will enjoy Comity’s adventures, real and imagined, with her Aboriginal friend Fred, but the desperate situation just gets worse and worse. Being a children’s book you know that Grandma (who has been receiving misspelled letters supposedly coming from her educated daughter) will no doubt come to the rescue, although in the end when rescue does come it is from an unexpected source. Beautifully written this book brings to life the dust and heat of the Australian outback and the intolerance of nineteenth century society where the friendship between white Comity and the aboriginal Fred is not just frowned upon but deemed as outrageous. Suitable for children from 9-12 and adults only with plenty of hankies!
A new glittery series of books for little girls of about six who are just starting to read comes from Rosy Banks ”Enchanted Palace” is the first of the “Secret Kingdom” stories about Ellie, Summer and Jasmine who find a lovely box which leads them to a secret kingdom peopled by fairies, unicorns and pixies and ruled by King Merry. His constant foe is the evil Queen Malice and the girls are drawn into adventures where they have to help good King Merry fight the evil forces threatening him. £4.99 each and books 1-6 are available now.