Billy doesn’t believe his Grandad when he tells him there’s a secret giant living in their town and protecting the residents with secret good deeds. Billy doesn’t believe in what he can’t see.
‘”But Grandad,” Billy said, ‘if the giant is so helpful and good, why does he want to stay such a big secret?”
“Because people are scared of things that are different,” said Grandad.’
And thus begins Billy’s journey of acceptance and understanding as he meets Grandad’s secret giant and overcomes his fears, learning that all anyone wants is a friend.
David Litchfield’s illustrations have the character of Oliver Jeffers and the luminosity of Tom Docherty. They bring this book to life and give it a real sense of magic and mystery.
A gentle, heartwarming story about the importance of tolerance and the power of friendship. You can get your copy here.
Source – kindly sent for review by the publisher, Frances Lincoln.
Now more than ever we need to empower our girls and young women. We need to show them examples of women who have made a difference, who have stormed their way through glass ceilings. Because these women are so often erased from history, we need to work twice as hard to highlight their achievements. And that is why books like the Little People, Big Dreams series (Frances Lincoln Children’s Books) are so important.
These books feature trailblazing women as children, showing that no matter who you are or where you start in life, you can fulfil your dreams and achieve great things.
They are brilliantly accessible and inspiring and the perfect way to start armouring the future generation of Nasty Women. I love the way they celebrate difference and show children that your uniqueness is your strength.
Each book includes a fact section and a list of further reading. I particularly like the inclusion of photographs of the women as children, to really show readers where these women came from and how they grew up to be such fantastic, inspirational women.
These beautiful books really do deserve a place in every school library and classroom. They would work brilliantly with Fantastically Great Women Who Changed the World by Kate Pankhurst (Bloomsbury)
You can get your copies here. And keep your eyes open for two new titles coming soon.
Source – kindly sent for review by Frances Lincoln Children’s Books.
We have a responsibility to teach our children about conservation issues and to do so in a way that inspires them to make a difference. The Big Green Book is a hugely positive book that highlights where we have been going wrong but clearly points the next generation to a brighter greener future. This book says ‘we can fix this. You can fix this!’
The Big Green Book begins with our place in space and explains the balance of life on earth and our responsibility to maintain it. Looking at water, plants and trees, air and animals, and touching on climate change, everything is explained in a child-friendly and child-focused way. Climate change can be a scary concept for children but it is handled with perfect balance here – and linking it to Santa’s reindeer is genius!
The rest of the book focuses on what we can do to protect our world. Full of practical and inspirational ideas to save water and energy and recycle and reuse, it even explains nuclear energy and food miles.
As always, Ros Asquith’s illustrations are beautifully inclusive, witty and filled with speech bubbles and captions. They add so much to this book and help make it so beautifully child-focused.
I love this book for its perfectly pitched information, just at the right level for prompting children to question the way they (and their families) live. The part that really inspired my daughter was the double page spread encouraging the reader to be the change, to think big and invent solutions. Including information about young inventors who are already making a difference has left my daughter scribbling designs and dreaming of saving the world.
Quick! Get a copy of this book in every primary and secondary school – the people who are going to save the world are waiting!
If you like the look of this, try the other two titles in the series:
The Great Big Book of Feelings and The Great Big Book of Families.
Source – kindly sent for review by Frances Lincoln Children’s Books
In Longleat safari park there is a tall wooden platform where you can stand eye to eye with giraffes and feed them lettuce leaves. It is an experience I will never forget. They are such graceful creatures with wise mournful eyes and incredible eyelashes. They look kind and curious and wise, and are full of character and mischief. When you feed them they twirl their long black tongue around the lettuce leaf and gently pull it from your hands. It is an extraordinary sight. They practically have to do the splits to nibble grass from the ground. I will always remember my daughter asking the keeper how the giraffes go to sleep. (They fold their legs underneath them and bend their neck round to use their own bum as a pillow.)
The recent controversial killing of Marius the giraffe in Copenhagen zoo reminded me of that incredible morning watching the giraffes at Longleat; of being amazed at their grace and beauty, being at their level and seeing the world as they do – as much of an experience as feeding them! I felt so awed and humbled by the giraffes and was amazed that a zoo felt it had the right to destroy such an incredible creature. These feelings were brought into relief by Zeraffa Giraffa by Dianne Hofmeyr and Jane Ray.
Imagine seeing a giraffe for the very first time. I wish I could remember that feeling, or could experience it now that I know enough to appreciate it. That is what happened in France in 1827 when a baby giraffe called Zeraffa was sent to Paris as a gift for the King of France. It took two and a half years for her to travel from Egypt to Paris – a 2000 mile trip down the Nile, a three week sail across the sea and a 550 mile walk across France. Zeraffa Giraffa describes her journey and her reception in France and explores her relationship with her keeper, Atir, who was her companion along the journey and throughout her new life in Paris.
Jane Ray’s illustrations are, as always, magical. They beautifully portray the changing landscapes and cultures that Zeraffa and Atir experience along their journey and the developing bond between them. The curves and grace of the paintings; the details, colours and characters in the scenes all build to create a sense of beauty and care and wonder.
The lush language transports the reader to the banks of the Nile and through the valleys and streets of France. Zeraffa Giraffa is bursting with wonderful descriptions and vocabulary to introduce to children – mistral winds; orchards of almonds and olives; felucca; amulet; elegant sails that see-sawed and pivoted; the place where the sea sipped up the Nile; stars that turned the sky into curdled milk. Beautiful! This is the kind of language that we should be whispering into the ears of our young children and encouraging our older children to form with their own mouths. It is beautiful and evocative and mysterious. It is the kind of language that can take you on an adventure.
I love the way the whole book mirrors the character of Zeraffa – graceful and wise, playful and mischievous, but always with an air of magic and wonder.
Source: kindly sent for review by Frances Lincoln Children’s Books.