This lovely book has been read and re-read in our household. Both girls love the rhythmic text, the sweet illustrations and the message, that whatever you run out of from food to energy, to socks, from time and money to patience and ideas - you can never run out of love. "Love doesn't come in a bottle or jar. It's right there inside you, wherever you are. You don't have to charge it. No batteries inside. Your love can be big, as the whole world is wide..." At the crux of the book is the central message that love grows when it is given. When you've run out of everything else, you'll still find... you can never run out of love. Long may our girls believe this.
Words and Your Heart by Kate Jane Neal
Sometimes a title drops through the post that in its own original way gets a message so right that you have to shout about it. This is one of those books. Words and Your Heart is a little book about the amazing power of words, to harm or to build others up. Our words are powerful, they are important, because the words that go into our ears can really affect our hearts too. Just as the words of others can make us happy or want to sing (or make us cry), our words can also pierce someone else's heart - the little bit of them that makes them, them. Our words are so powerful that they can change the way someone's heart feels - our words can make someone who feels weak, feel stronger. The book exorts us to choose to use our words to look after the hearts of others. It's a really important message for school children - teachers have even reported a change in the culture of their classroom after sharing it with their students. It's just as crucial for us as parents. This is one of those books I'll buy for others, and I have a copy to send to school.
How to Say I Love You in Five Languages by Kenard Pack
This cute interactive primer arrived this week, alongside a counting version, and the girls have been busy experimenting with it. With buttons to press, we are taught how to say "I love you" in English, French, Spanish, Japanese and Mandarin. The girls' school does French and Mandarin from reception so they have particularly enjoyed hearing these and looking at the simple phrases such as "You are my friend". Noisy books are always fun and this title from Wide Eyed Editions lives up to their usual high quality quirky standards.
The Poesy Ring, A Love Story by Bob Graham
Oskar and Mo by Britta Teckentrup
Last year I wrote about Britta Teckentrup's adorable creation Oskar. Her stunning illustrations and lyrical language and description have ensured that these gorgeous books will be future classics. From the the smell of spring to sweet red cherries, losing himself in books to the silence of snow, Oskar gives us a glimpse into the simple beauty and pleasures in life. Now Oskar returns and he has a best friend Mo. "Oskar loves Mo, and Mo loves Oskar. They are the best of friends." From their favourite place where they share all their secrets, to activities they love to share together, their friendship ensures that the night doesn't seem so dark, the rain so bleak. Even though at times they disagree, they always make up. This is simple and perfect friendship, and the book itself is a work of art.
The Snow Lion by Jim Helmore and Richard Jones
The Snow Lion is a beautifully illustrated story about making new friends and growing in confidence. Caro and her mum move to a new house, and Caro wishes she has someone to play with. Then one day, she hears a deep gentle voice suggesting a game of hide and seek. The voice belongs to a snow-white lion, invisible against the white walls of the home, who becomes both playmate but also quiet encourager - suggesting that Caro ventures out and plays with other children - he will always be there when she returns. As her world becomes more and more filled with colour, her first playmate recedes, but as he reminds her, he will always still be there if she needs him. She knows where to look...
The Unexpected Love Story of Alfred Fiddleduckling by Timothy Basil Ering
Odd Couples. One Word Two Meanings by Mirja Winkelmann
Finally an unusual Valentines title from quirky art publisher Prestel. This mainly wordless book brings together unusual pairings of images, united by the one word that describes them. Words such as bark, ring, crane, tank, fly or sole are depicted in their odd couplings. It's a great book for getting little ones to think differently. Perfect for propping up on the breakfast table and discussing.
Disclaimer: We received copies of the books over the last few months for the purposes of a review. I only write about the books that I love. There are all fabulous.