Review of “Hooray for Fish” by Lucy Cousins

Hooray for fish is another of our favourite board books, but this probably has a little bit more longevity than most others in this category. My son who is six will still listen to this story with his sisters and he still remembers the words fondly.

This is an engaging story about a little fish who swims around saying hello to all his different fish friends. There’s Ele Fish (a fish that looks like an elephant) eye fish (who looks like an eye, you get the idea)  and many other silly little fishes. The rhyming is solid and the rhythm is very appropriate, giving a gentle but not sluggish pace to the book.

Izzy, who is one, loves the fly and sky fish, which in our family, requires a great flinging of arms, swiftly followed by some squeals of delight, but all have had their own, different, favourite fish.

I’m still not bored of this book, even after five years of reading it. The best bit, which definately requires actions, is the bit at the end where little fish says, “But where’s the one I love the best, even more than all the rest? Hello Mum.”
“Hello, Little Fish.” Kiss, kiss, kiss, hooray for fish!”

Like I said, definitely requires actions.

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A Review of There’s a cow in the Cabbage Patch by Stella Blackstone, Illustrated by Claire Beaton

This has been one of the most read and most loved board books in our family. Sam and Maisie both loved it and now Izzy does too. I bought it from Igloo Kids in Islington about 5 years ago and its been worth it’s weight in gold, it’s just one of “those” books for us.

It’s such a charming little creation, the illustrations are basically photos of some gorgeous appliqué pictures and they depict plenty of animals with good sounds to try out with your baby. So far Izzy can woof for the dog, moo for the cow, woof for the owl and woof for the horse, which I think probably makes her a genius.

The rhymes work well with the correct amount of beats to make the words flow nicely. I can’t bear kids books with bad rhymes that don’t fit the beat, why are they even allowed to be published? What also works, is that it has enough of a story to engage little ones without being too long. It’s also far more interesting than your bog standard baby book that just has pictures with words underneath.

I think this book is fantastic, it’ll definitely be one for our kids “special stuff” box when they’ve all grown out of it.

Available at Amazon.co.uk

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A Review of Good Night Bunny Fabric Book by Oskar and Ellen

Oskar & Ellen Interactive Books
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One of my best friends got this book for my eldest daughter for her first birthday, she loved it then and she still loves it now. It comes with a gorgeous little squeaky bunny who you dress, undress, bath, play with, read to and put to bed. It’s fantastic for helping develop fine motor skills and is generally just great for growing imaginations. This book would make a lovely gift and they also have a boys version which is just as cute by all accounts. Mine has been loved so much that the bedding on the front page is coming apart and one of the toys has disappeared, surely a sign of a greatly loved book!

It’s pretty expensive, the cheapest I could find it on the net is £28.99  from http://www.borngifted.co.uk/baby-gifts/product/BG-3043 (Lucy you’re very naughty!) but for a special occasion or if you’re just feeling flush, then it’s a gift that’ll just keep giving!

Book Review – Tideline, by Penny Hancock

This is just a list of books that I have loved. If I don’t love it, it won’t be on here!

Tideline – Penny Hancock (www.pennyhancock.com)
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Right, I have to confess that my reasons for reading this book in the first place were commercial. Penny is a client of mine on the web design side of things and she gave me her book to read to help me understand her style and the tone of her writing. Having read the book though (in 3 days, which is very quick for a woman with NO spare time) I can honestly say it’s the best read I’ve had for quite a while. It’s the sort of book that when you’ve finished reading it, leaves you feeling as though something’s missing, as though you’re in mourning for the elation that comes from reading a really good story. If you’re a reader, then you know what I’m talking about.

If you enjoy a good British thriller but are a bit fed up of reading about scruffy (yet maverick) detectives then Tideline may be just what you’re looking for.

The story’s set in a house on the River Thames and is about a middle aged woman who decides to keep a young man who comes to her house to borrow some music. It’s an uncomfortable read at times because you can strongly feel the panic and confusion and claustrophobia of the boy and just want to know it’s all going to be alright. As the story progresses, we learn the woman’s story and the context of her decision, but even at the end when the twist is revealed, the reader is not entirely sure whether or not the hoped for Hollywood ending has actually happened.

Tideline, is different and original and disturbing and I would definitely recommend it.

Tideline is available from Amazon.