Friday 31 August 2018

ReadItDaddy's Second Picture Book of the Week - Week Ending 31st August 2018: "The Visitor" by Antje Damm (Gecko Press)

Our second Picture Book of the week pulls off the neat trick of instantly feeling like a well-loved children's classic, even though it hasn't been around that long...
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ReadItDaddy's First Book of the Week - Week Ending 31st August 2018: "I'm the Biggest" by Stephanie Blake (Gecko Press)

It's Book of the Week time! Time for another romp with Simon and his hapless little brother...
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Thursday 30 August 2018

"What Does the Crocodile Say?" by Eva Montanari (Book Island)

To all the parents prepping their kids for going to nursery or 'big school' for the first time, we salute you...!
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"Earth Before Us: Ocean Renegades!" by Abby Howard (Abrams)

Here's another awesome slice of time-travelling dino-conservational fun in Abby Howard's latest awesome fact-filled Graphic Novel series...
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Wednesday 29 August 2018

ReadItDaddy's Chapter Book Roundup - August 2018

As the long and gloriously sunny summer continues, we wanted to go all-in for our bumper August Chapter Book Roundup, with a whopping sack full of amazing chapter books for your early reader, middle grade and YA fanatics.

Kicking off with a real waggy tale from Heidi Lang. "Rules of the Ruff" is a perfect summer read for poochy pals who adore all things snuffly, wet nosed and doggy.

Twelve-year-old Jessie is in for a long summer at her aunt and uncle’s house.

Her cousin Ann has a snotty new best friend, which leaves Jessie all alone. 

But Jessie is industrious, and―not content with being ignored all summer―she convinces Wes, a grouchy neighborhood dog walker, to take her on as his apprentice.

Sure, dog walking turns out to be harder than she expected, but she has Wes’s dog-walking code, the Rules of the Ruff, to guide her, and soon she’s wrangling her very own pack. 

But when a charismatic rival dog walker moves to town, she quickly snatches up most of Wes’s business―and Jessie decides she isn’t going to take this defeat with her tail between her legs. So begins a battle royale to be top dog in more ways than one!

C blitzed through this one in double-quick time, loving the mix of gentle humour and doggy antics - and of course some brilliantly well-observed scenes of what it's like when you're the poor human charged with looking after a bunch of unruly canines. 

"Rules of the Ruff" by Heidi Lang is out now, published by Abrams. 

Another perfect summer read now, particularly for kids who have spent summer with their besties. 

Meet "Miranda and Maude: The Princess and The 'absolutely NOT a princess" by Emma Wunsch and Jessika Von Innerebner. 

A princess and a revolutionary form an unexpected friendship in this charming, illustrated chapter-book series, perfect for fans of Judy Moody and Clementine!

Princess Miranda does not want to go to school. She wants to shoe shop, plan parties, and decorate the castle.

Maude on the other hand doesn't hold any truck with all that frothy stuff. She loves books, loves using her brain and loves inventing and roller skating. How can the two possibly ever get on and become the best of friends? 

Well, sometimes friendship is found in the most unlikely places...

Unashamedly a book with colossal girl appeal, but with some truly awesome and wry nods that might convince 'princessy' types that there are more awesome ways to be a mighty girl than looking drop dead gorgeous. 

"Miranda and Maude: The Princess and the 'absolutely NOT a princess" by Emma Wunsch and Jessika Von Innerebner is out now, published by Abrams. 

Next there's a mystery to solve - but it might be a bit too much for one amateur sleuth...

In "Help I'm a Detective" meet Dan, the awkward 'middle child' in his family.  Dan is usually the one everyone ignores and who gets the blame for everything.

So when there's a burglary near his home and the police are hunting for suspects, they seem to be very interested in Dan for some reason due to his proximity to the crime! ARGH!

With his friends Freddo and Gordon the Geek, Dan has no choice but to turn detective himself to clear his name. 

Will the three hapless friends be able to crack the crime - or will their crazy antics make them ALL suspects?

Madcap humour, awesome illustrations and a ton of squidgy gags, this is a brilliant series from Jo Franklin. 

"Help I'm a Detective" is published by Troika, and is out now. 

Next, a brilliant new book from Linda Chapman and Lucy Fleming in the awesome mighty girl "Star Friends" series. 

"Star Friends: Night Shade" is a nocturnal adventure featuring the awesome Star Animals and their human companions. 

Maia believes in magic, and when she meets the star animals, a whole new world awaits, and kicks off a quest to once again defeat the forces of dark magic.

Ever since Maia and her friends stopped Auntie Mabel from using dark magic to cause trouble in the small seaside village of Westcombe, life has been peaceful for the girls and their Star Animals. But it seems that peace was only temporary and the girls are going to have to use all their Star Magic skills to battle against the latest threat…

Perfect for fans of My Secret Unicorn and The Rescue Princesses, and for Rainbow Magic readers looking to move on to a more challenging adventure.

"Star Friends: Night Shade" by Linda Chapman and Lucy Fleming is out now, published by Stripes. 

Next, a new book from an amazingly prolific author, part of a fantastic magical series of books for older middle grade readers. 

"The Hounds of Penhallow Hall: The Secrets Tree" is the latest in Holly Webb's awesome "Penhallow Hall" series from Stripes Publishing. This series pays homage to classic children's ghost stories of the 70s and 80s in a whole new canine set of adventures with a difference. Meet the ghost dogs!

It’s Halloween at Penhallow Hall and while celebrations are in full swing at the stately home, Polly and Rex are in search of a new ghost dog.

Down in the old stable block they come across a dog’s head carved in a wooden door and wake a terrier called Patch. The little dog is terrified of the changes to his old home and runs off. 

When Polly and Rex find Patch hiding in a hollow tree they find themselves on the trail of an even greater mystery. Inside the tree is a coded message from Patch’s master, Jack, to his older brother. 

From Patch’s description Polly and Rex realize that Jack’s brother must have been a highwayman! But the message remains unread. Can Polly and Rex discover what happened to the brothers?

Tense, exciting and wholly original, leaving you breathless with almost every turn of the page, this is a brilliant series so if it's new to you, this is a great jumping-in point to introduce yourselves to these amazing spectral hounds and their mighty-girl ally. Honestly, we don't know how Holly does it but we're so glad she does, this is fantastic stuff!

"The Hounds of Penhallow Hall: The Secrets Tree" by Holly Webb with awesome illustrations from Jason Cockroft is out now, published by Stripes Publishing. 

In fact, there's more from Holly next in a real switch of gears - and an awesome series based around a school for the performing arts.

"Shine: Chloe Centre Stage" by Holly Webb is the latest in her sparkling series of dance, drama, dreams and friendship.

Getting into the Shine School for Performing Arts is a dream come true for Chloe – she’ll be taking classes in dance and drama everyday and surrounded by people just as passionate as she is!

But while the talented and extroverted Chloe was the star at her old school, at Shine it’s much harder to stand out.

Although the other girls in her year seem nice, she finds it trickier to make real friends than she’d expected too.

Chloe starts to mess around in class and finally finds herself the centre of attention – but for all the wrong reasons. And when a prank goes wrong rumours that she is about to be expelled begin to fly. Can Chloe turn things around before it’s too late?

This is perfect stuff for C, who has had her own summer of dance and drama in various workshops during summer clubs, and the bits about fitting in and making new friends really struck a chord with her. 

Fab illustrations from Monique Dong really round these brilliant books off. 

"Shine: Chloe Centre Stage" by Holly Webb and Monique Dong is out now, published by Stripes. 

Animal antics next, and a book that will have you scratching your head at least once - as it features some pretty pesky pests..

"Invasion of the Giant Nits" from Gareth P. Jones and Steve May is the latest in the "Pet Defenders" series from Stripes Publishing. 

The Pet Defenders Code: 1. The safety of Planet Earth depends on you. 2. Humans MUST NOT know the truth. GOOD LUCK – you’ll need it…

Biskit and Mitzy are confronted by a large alien spider who plans to destroy the planet.

Worse, she has an army of nits that she can enlarge with a blast from her own invention: the Relativisor. 

She can also shrink things with it – and suddenly Mitzy is the size of a louse clinging to Biskit’s head. 

Can the Pet Defenders stop the nits ripping the Earth apart? It’s a head-scratcher for sure!

A wildly funny series, perfect for kids who are just getting up to speed with their reading and dipping into chapter books for the first time. It's frenetic, fast paced animal action with brilliantly paced writing and awesome (itch-inducing) illustrations from Steve May. 

"Pet Defenders: Invasion of the Giant Nits" by Gareth P. Jones and Steve May is out now, published by Stripes. 

Next, a series that's become an instant hit with C, who loves a bit of school-based mayhem

St Grizzle's School for Girls: Gremlins and Pesky Guests" by Karen McCombie and Becka Moor is a fantastic series for kids who love books like "Murder Most Unladylike" or even "Malory Towers".

When a flood closes the village school, Lulu invites the staff and pupils to come and join them at St Grizzle’s. Dani and her friends can’t believe their bad luck – it was awful enough bumping into Spencer and his cronies in the village but now they’ve got to share lessons with them. 

Before long pupils are clashing with pupils, there are pranks aplenty and even the teachers aren’t getting along. 

Rehearsals get underway for the school show but with tempers fraying it’s soon looking like a big failure. 

Determined that the show will go on, Lulu calls on Dani and co, as the oldest children in the school, to set a good example and make friends. But with Spencer up to his usual tricks, can the two rival groups put aside their differences long enough to turn a disaster into a triumph?

C loved this book, and found plenty of things in it that had her nodding her head (silly boys showing off, awesome girls trying to get things sorted!) but it's a great book for both girls and boys who love a bit of school-based mayhem. 

"St Grizzle's School for Girls: Gremlins and Pesky Guests" by Karen McCombie and Becka Moor is out now, published by Stripes. 

We're on the home stretch now, but don't run away just yet, there are a few more books in our reviews sack so let's dig in...

Next it's the return of Tony De Saulles' awesome stripy superhero in "Bee Boy: Attack of the Zombees". 

Half BEE. Half BOY. Melvin Meadly is . . . BEE BOY and definitely not your ordinary everyday superhero!

When a strange sickness bug strikes at school, Mel has his suspicions - could this have something to do with the new kid, Berty Crump? 

More questions arise when Mel and his bees discover a factory in the woods with giant flowers, chemical spraying drones, beekeepers in metal suits, and worse of all . . . ZOMBEEZ! 

The highly entertaining story of an unlikely superhero, full of fantastic bee facts, and illustrated in black and yellow! Perfect for kids who love a story laced with a strong eco message on the importance of bees as a species, but full of fun and drama to keep you totally locked into this fantastic story until the (stingy) end. 

"Bee Boy: Attack of the Zombees" by Tony De Saulles is out now, published by OUP / Oxford Children's Books. 

Another fantastic series now from OUP, and the return of a favourite character. 

"The Night Zoo Keeper: The Lioness of Fire Desert" is the latest in Joshua Davidson and Giles Clare's awesome animal-based series, featuring illustrations from Buzz Burman. 

When Will accidentally creates a mysterious portal during a trip to the zoo, he's transported into the world of the Night Zoo, and thrust into an incredible adventure. Will is - The Night Zookeeper.

Joined by his friends, Sam and Riya, Will journeys to Fire Desert, where rumours of a creature called 'the Grip' have struck fear into the hearts of the animals. 

Even normally brave Captain Claw, a fierce lioness, seems to be acting strangely on hearing the news. 

The animals look to Will to save them, but does he have the strength to overcome his fears, and become the hero that the Night Zoo needs? He's definitely going to need some help this time for his trickiest adventure yet. 

Hugely original, brilliantly tense and with tons and tons of animal appeal, this is a great series for younger readers who love learning about different species, but also love high adventure and mystery. 

"Night Zoo Keeper: The Lioness of Fire Desert" by Joshua Davidson, Giles Clare and Buzz Burman is out now, published by OUP / Oxford Children's Books. 

A real wow of an adventure next for five plucky kids who join "The Mapmaker's Race", a fantastic new fantasy title from Eirlys Hunter. 

The race is on for a globe-trotting adventure as five children each set out on a journey to complete a challenge that stretches right around the earth. 

Perils await, as each picks a path through uncharted territories facing personal challenges and extreme conditions in ice, snow, desert and jungle. 

A perfect title for kids who love learning all about explorers or pioneering, learning about new cultures and countries or just folk like us who are totally obsessed with atlases and maps. 

"The Mapmaker's Race" by Eirlys Hunter is out now, published by Gecko Press. 

Last but by no means least, a real epic from an author whose work just completely blows us away. 

Award-winning author Piers Torday is back with a fantastic new fantasy adventure. 

"The Lost Magician" begins at the end of the Second World War. It's 1945. They have survived the Blitz, but when Simon, Patricia, Evelyn and Larry step through a mysterious library door, it is the beginning of their most dangerous adventure yet. 

They discover the magical world of Folio, where an enchanted kingdom of fairy knights, bears and tree gods is under threat from a sinister robot army.

The many stories of the Library are locked in eternal war, and the children's only hope is to find their creator - a magician who has been lost for centuries.

What they find will change not just their own lives, but the fate of the world forever. 

Paying homage to children's literary classics like The Chronicles of Narnia and The Wizard of Oz, Piers' worldbuilding is utterly superb, and the mix of dark fantasy and clanky technology in this really breathes a huge breath of fresh air into the fantasy genre. Last year we all thrilled to the return to Philip Pullman's Dark Materials world, this year it's all about "The Lost Magician" without a doubt. 

"The Lost Magician" by Piers Torday is out on 6th September 2018, published by Quercus. 

PHEW! We'll be back in September, you'll be back at school but we'll be hard at work to bring you the very best in chapter fiction. See you then!
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Olobob Top: Let's Visit Norbet's Shop by Leigh Hodgkinson and Steve Smith (Bloomsbury)

More cute craziness and zaniness now from hit CBeebies show Olobob Top. Let's go drop in on Norbert!
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Tuesday 28 August 2018

"100 Dogs" by Michael Whaite (Picture Puffin)

Can there possibly be 100 dogs and dog-related things in this book? Better get your counting head on, we're about to find out...
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"Valdemar's Peas" by Maria Jonsson (Gecko Press)

What is it about kids and peas? If ever there was a veggie villain prevalent through kid's books it's the humble pea...
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Monday 27 August 2018

Ramp up your Fortnite skills with a killer pair of brilliant books from Jason Rich and Studio Press

Love it or hate it, it's almost impossible to ignore Fortnite, one of the biggest videogames of the year...
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"Selma" By Jutta Bauer (Gecko Press)

Here's a slightly humbling and thought-provoking philosophical journey into what really makes us happy and fulfils us...
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Friday 24 August 2018

ReaditDaddy's Third Book of the Week (!) - Week Ending 24th August 2018: "Franklin's Flying Bookshop" by Jen Campbell and Katie Harnett (Thames and Hudson)

Summer is ripe with excellent books, hence our need to add this one into our Book of the Week slot because...
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ReadItDaddy's Second Picture Book of the Week - Week Ending 24th August 2018: "Stickyscapes at the Museum" by Laura Junger (Laurence King Publishing)

This week's second "Book of the Week asks: "What if you could perform a minor miracle, and cram the museum of your dreams between the covers of a gorgeous book?"
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ReadItDaddy's Book(s) of the Week - Week Ending 24th August 2018: "How to Think when you Draw" and "Deluxe Collection Volume III" by Lorenzo Etherington (Lulu / Self Published)

Imagine waking up in the morning at 4 AM and instantly thinking to yourself "What can I draw today?"

Now imagine doing that - but doing it in a way where you're actively thinking about how you can share your incredible artistic knowledge with a whole stack of other people, from amateurs (like us) to professional artists looking to add a few tweaks to their game.

Lorenzo Etherington is a dude with a singularity inside his head, capable of drawing in the most incredible ideas through some mystical gravitational force, and translating them into glorious pieces of art - or awesome mind-expanding tutorials.

We've been following his "How to Think when you Draw" series online and in the pages of the fabulous Phoenix Comic for some time. Lorenzo doesn't just teach you how to draw a squirrel, a girl's hair, or a shattered window pane - he takes you through a thinking process that describes what you're trying to draw or visualise using a set of rules that seem so jaw-droppingly simple that they provide an instant confidence boost. "Can it really be that easy?" you start asking yourself - and as you start to scribble and draw some of the exercise topics, you find that the guy knows exactly what he's talking about.

"How to Think When you Draw" is now a hard-backed book available through Lorenzo's recent kickstarter, self published through Hulu. Giving Lorenzo an entirely free rein to produce a piece of work that draws (yeah we'll use that pun a lot) on the very best of the tutes made available previously, with a good few we hadn't seen before.

The book - as you'd expect - is just utterly fantastic, and for us it was really great to have a lot of the tutorials organised by category and available in one place - in a book that we can fold flat and start drawing from. YASSSSSSSS!!!

Follow some of these and you'll start to think before you lift your pencil or pen to paper! It really does work!
Each tutorial section also comes with a vast array of complimentary source material and drawings to help you get up to speed once you've got the gist of what you want to do. Needless to say both C and I absolutely loved all the figurative stuff, particularly drawing gorgeous Stranski-esque ladies.

In our particular level of the kickstarter, this amazing book also came with "The Deluxe Collection Volume 3" - Another huge slice of Lorenzo's personal art back catalogue. 600 pages in fact, blimey guvnor!

A colossal volume comprising 4 years of awesome artistic creativity from an absolute DUDE!
As we've previously said with the last couple of editions of this mighty behemoth of artistic inspiration, the Deluxe Collection III is chock full of amazing ideas, character art, scenic stuff - heck, you name it and it's in here somewhere. In Lorenzo's trademark "Noir-Punk" style, you'll find everything from Stranski girls to kittens driving mechs, stunning Tiki statues or cute little buildings perfect for shoehorning into your favourite RPGs.

Inspiration wise, it's impossible not to flick through this and soak up some of that artistic genius - in fact in conjunction with "How to Think when you Draw" you'll have more than enough source material here to really get your skills up to scratch.

C was so inspired by these that she dug out all our previous Lorenzo books and is now going through them all again, making little doodles and notes as she goes. I love the fact that I'll be off somewhere else in the house and I'll suddenly hear a squeal of delight, the thumping of feet and her appearing at the door to show me some other new little marvel she's discovered in these.

So there you go, a huge thanks to Lorenzo for those early mornings, for the colossal effort involved in producing such a massive body of work - it is worth it dude, it does pay off and you have definitely inspired us so many times to pick up our art materials and get drawing.

C's best bit: Mech-commander Kittens (I think she still wants a 'how to think when you draw' tute on Kittens, so perhaps for Volume 2?)

Daddy's favourite bit: I get completely lost in the imaginary alt-universe of a world that still riffs on 1930s and 40s movies and film noir with a sometimes sci-fi and modern twist. Just too, too good!

Check out Lorenzo and Robin's awesome blog over at

"How to think when you draw" and Deluxe Collection Volume III were available via Kickstarter (self purchased, not supplied for review). 
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Thursday 23 August 2018

Comics and EBooks "not proper reading"? Picture books too? What craziness are we teaching our kids? A ReadItTorial

Well, Supes doesn't look too happy about this does he!
This week's ReadItTorial jumps on a piece of homework sent home by a (possibly well meaning) teacher, urging kids to get into some 'proper' reading over the holidays.

The original text can be found below:

I'm guessing the intent here was to encourage children to push themselves a little in their reading journeys, perhaps engaging with texts they would normally pass on.

I was actually fine with this right up till the last sentence:

"Comic books, articles, eBooks on phones and children's picture books are not permitted."

Wait...WHAT? What fresh hell is this?

OK I'm obviously going to take issue with the first one. I've loved comics for as long as I've been able to read - possibly even before that, as comics are one of the most visual and approachable methods of beginning any reading journey, and some of the wordless comics can be enjoyed and translated into stories by anyone at any age, regardless of reading ability.

Dismissing comics as 'not proper reading' is, of course, ridiculous. Think of the social and political impact comics can have, dammit the CULTURAL impact of comics and comic-book heroes alone is just incredible. See just how many aspects of society soak up comic culture by proxy, and then consider how you'd engage a reluctant reader who loves movies and TV shows but perhaps hasn't quite got into books and stories yet.

Putting the hex on articles and eBooks (on phones) also puzzled me. Again reluctant readers are far more likely to engage with reading materials on their own terms, whether that means reading short articles in magazines or newspapers or perhaps reading the text in an adventure game on a phone. I do not see the difference between an eBook or any other book so I'm really baffled by the notion that they are in any way less of a reading challenge (particularly as I read an awful lot of my 'grown up non-bloggy' intake on my Kindle now, including comics just to add insult to injury).

Lastly there's a solid kick in the pants for children's picture books. Oh god, where would you even start with that one. Discounting children's picture books as 'not proper reading' again shows a huge walloping chunk of sheer ignorance on the teachers' part here. I would imagine in their head they had a list of titles they would rather steer kids away from but ignored the bigger picture, that picture books have moved on and evolved along with the complex expectations of children and their reading tastes changing generation on generation. Today's picture books can deal with sensitive issues, complex issues, downright controversial and subversive issues in much the same way modern comics do. They can subtly allude to social and political machinations in the real world, their meanings can be downright obvious or beautifully veiled in a story that, at first glance, may seem simple but has onion-like layers of complexity and interpretation.

As a children's book blogger I find this piece of summer homework particularly offensive, again I find the notion of any homework sent home during the long summer vac to be an annoyance rather than a necessity (you have no idea how many tantrums and screaming matches there have been at home because C was sent home with a Summer Work BOOK ffs! A whole workbook with 9 weeks worth of work in it. I just can't even..)

The crux of my annoyance with this, and I suspect the annoyance of a great many people who tweeted about this, is the inference that the best way to get kids reading is to push, prod, demand, force rather than encourage, persuade, engage with or - damn it - just LISTEN to what kids have to say on the subject of their own reading preferences. Turning kids right off reading at an early age with rubbish like this is so utterly stupid that, even with my most objective non-argumentative head on, I just can't see a counter-argument for this kind of utter ridiculousness at all.
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Five cool comics / graphic novels that make a perfect 'jumping in' point for kids. A ReadItDaddy Comic Special

Mention comics to most parents looking for a way to get their kids into reading for pleasure, and you're likely to get some real mixed reactions back...
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Professor Astro Cat's Space Rockets by Dr Dominic Walliman and Ben Newman (Flying Eye Books)

It's time to jet off into the stratosphere with that intrepid knowledgable fellow Professor Astro Cat!
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Wednesday 22 August 2018

"DIY Circus Lab for Kids" by Jackie Leigh Davis (Quarry Books / Quarto)

Fun, original, possibly a saviour of our sanity in the summer holidays? A great way of getting kids active? You bet we're up for this one...!
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"Can you see a Little Bear?" by James Mayhew and Jackie Morris (Otter-Barry Books)

A gorgeous sumptuous luxurious story book that's perfect for settling down with before bedtime, well how could we possibly resist?
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Tuesday 21 August 2018

"Up the Mountain" by Marianne Dubuc (Book Island)

Book Island really do have the most amazing and gorgeous range of books for younger readers who demand a little bit more from their picture books...
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EtchArt: Forgotten Jungle by Dinara Mirtalipova, A.J Wood and Mike Jolley (Wide Eyed Editions)

Got an art itch that you need to scratch? In the long summer holidays we find that happens a lot...!
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Monday 20 August 2018

Two more awesome titles in Ammonite Press' brilliant "Biographic" Range from Viv Croot and Sophie Collins

We really love the "Biographic" series from Ammonite Press, covering some incredible notaries in fictional and non-fictional history.
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"Hey Duggee Sticky Stick Sticker Book" (Ladybird Books)

What better way to spend a boring summer holiday than sticking stickers all over the place. Not just any stickers though, sticky stick stickers!
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Friday 17 August 2018

ReadItDaddy's Chapter Book of the Week - Week Ending 17th August 2018: "The Hounds of Penhallow Hall: The Secrets Tree" by Holly Webb with illustrations and cover by Jason Cockroft (Stripes Publishing)

Our Chapter Book of the Week this week is a series that's already well established. We're kicking ourselves that we haven't come across "The Hounds of Penhallow Hall" before now...
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ReadItDaddy's Second Picture Book of the Week - Week Ending 17th August 2018: "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea: A Puzzle Adventure" by Aleksandra Artymowska (Big Picture Press)

Our second Picture Book of the Week is a truly stunning homage to an absolutely amazing novel...
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ReadItDaddy's Picture Book of the Week - Week Ending 17th August 2018: "Dogs in Space: The Amazing True Story of Belka and Strelka" by Vix Southgate and Iris Deppe (Wren and Rook)

We've already seen a children's book all about Laika (well, several actually) but this week's Picture Book of the Week sings the praises of two more doggy space heroes
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Thursday 16 August 2018

"Treasure Hunt House: Lift the Flaps and Solve the Clues" by Becca Stadtlander and Kate Davies (Lincoln Children's Books)

Hidden object apps on mobile phones and tablets are nothing new...
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A fantastic pair of infographic-styled books introducing legends of Rock Music and Ancient Greece (Wide Eyed Editions)

Wide Eyed Editions have really tapped into a fantastic way to deliver awesome non-fiction in a really cool new look for children's books...
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"Why do we need bees?" by Katie Daynes and Christine Pym (Usborne Books)

Another awesome book from Usborne, this time with a non-fiction approach to learning more about our favourite insects. Bee kind, they're in decline!
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Wednesday 15 August 2018

"Where's the Mermaid?" by Chuck Whelon (Pop Press)

Books like "Where's the Mermaid" by Chuck Whelon are an absolute godsend in the long summer hols...
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"That's Not My Bee" by Fiona Watt and Rachel Wells (Usborne Books)

Gosh, here's a series that takes us back almost ten years to when we first started exploring books for the first time together...
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Tuesday 14 August 2018

"Cook's Cook" by Gavin Bishop (Gecko Press)

As a kid, I was always fascinated by tales of explorers - who put to sea in sailing ships to explore our planet...
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"Dinosaur Bingo" by Caroline Selmes (Laurence King Publishing)

LKP are just about saving our sanity this summer with a truly awesome selection of August releases to keep kids busy during the long vacation...
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"Painting Rocks" by Laura Baker - a fantastic summertime artsy activity, and a brill book now available from Studio Press

As the lovely weather continues, we've managed to escape to the seaside at least once...
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Monday 13 August 2018

"Pocket Guide to Turtles, Snakes and Other Reptiles" by Dr Amy Jane Beer and Alice Pattullo (Natural History Museum and Lincoln Children's Books)

During the summer months it's easy to overlook the amazing non-fiction titles that emerge ahead of those dreaded three words...
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"Find My Rocket: A Marvellous Maze Adventure" by Aleksandra Artymowska (Laurence King Publishing)

Little known blog fact: C is absolutely obsessed with mazes...
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"Little Owl's Big Day" by Debi Gliori and Alison Brown (Bloomsbury Children's Books)

It's early August, and I'm sure for a lot of kids the thought of school is a million miles away...
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