The year isn't letting up, is it? March is sending us even more books to share with the young readers that we know and I'm here to give you a heads up on some of my favourite new releases.
If you want to go and buy them for yourself then most of them can be found on my Bookshop page - and if you can't find them there then never fear! I'll include the links in the description!
Here we go!
THE FAIRIES FRAN AND VERA by Mama G (!) and Anouska Sutherland
Yes! This is a bit cheeky, but I'm starting with my own book (which was published in February!) The Fairies Fran and Vera was the first story that I ever wrote and performed and I am very excited that it is now my first published picture book. It's a story about the many forms that love takes and it's not up to us to dictate who somebody loves.
The characters are inspired by my panto background and Anouska has done an incredible job of bringing them to life. Having Anouska involved in this project has been so special, because we've been friends for almost twenty years, since we met when we worked at the Science Museum and I couldn't think of a better person to help me tell this story!
The book is available on Amazon and signed copies will be available on this site very soon!
LUNA LOVES WORLD BOOK DAY and LUNA LOVES ART by Joseph Coleho and Fiona Lumbers (Andersen Press)
World Book Day is this Thursday (March 4th) and it's a fabulous day to celebrate the power of reading and our favourite characters. This has become a really big dress up day and Luna loves to dress up too; but this World Book Day everything goes a little awry! The best thing about this book is that it's only £1 - so you can share this fab story and the illustrations for a bargain! It will be available from your local book store!
Luna Loves Art is the paperback publication of Luna's first adventure where she meets a whole host of famous artists and art works. It's a great way to introduce kids to famous paintings and to help them find out why art is so important!
THE STORY THIEF by Graham Carter (Andersen Press)
This sounds like a fabulous book because it's about one of my favourite things (no, not me!) READING! Olive loves going on adventures through her books; but when someone steals all the town's stories, Olive decides to go on an adventure of her own to teach the thief the joys of reading. Any book that celebrates reading gets an A+ from me, especially when it can connect the joy of imagination with a real physical adventure!
THE PERFECT FIT by Naomi Jones and James Jones (Oxford University Press)
This is a paperback release of a book that originally came out last year.
Not only does it introduce shapes and how the interact with each other, it's also a giant triangle shaped metaphor for how important it is for different communities to get along and work together. And you can't go wrong with that, can you? The illustrations are really fun and colourful - but most importantly, the story and the message is sooooooo necessary right now.
BECOMING: ADAPTED FOR YOUNGER READERS by Michelle Obama (Puffin)
I think we can all agree that Michelle Obama has been one of the most luminescent figures in modern American politics. She's shown the advantages to working in a team and to remaining independent and, most significantly, to being a nice person and a positive influence.
Her autobiography was one of the bestselling books of 2018 and was on every coffee table it could find. It's absolutely wonderful that now this book has been adapted to be a suitable read for younger people. Obama's story has already encouraged and influenced millions of people around the globe and as her and Barack were both ambitious youngsters, it makes total sense that now her story can influence that generation too!
WHEN CAN I GO BACK TO SCHOOL? by Anna Friend and Jake Biggin (Scholastic)
When the pandemic started and schools started shutting, Anna and Jake noticed how it was affecting some of their young friends. This whole situation has been pretty confusing for adults, but, as you probably know, children have also had moments of feeling isolated and scared. Not seeing their friends and being taken out of a familiar routine will only have exacerbated this. Therefore, Anna and Jake decided to self-publish a book that would help children understand what was happening and offer suggestions on how to cope with it. The resulting book was a work of art, that appealed to adults as well as children. The simple story and the beautiful illustrations somehow captured the national mood - and Amazon was onto a hit! Now, Scholastic have come on board and the book is being released everywhere that books can be found!
HELLO MUM by Polly Dunbar (Faber and Faber)
This is a cheeky little addition to the list as it is absolutely for adults - but many of you will be familiar with the work that Polly does as an author and illustrator for children's books.
I've been loving following Polly's Facebook page and almost every day she has filled it with quick sketches, in her wonderful style, that share the joys and frustrations of being a mother to young children at this time.
The sketches and their themes are gentle and amusing - but universal and I'm sure that anyone who has known a child during this pandemic will be able to identify. Consider Hello Mum a truthful and witty souvenir of these 'strange times'.
Watch out for...
MY DADDIES by Gareth Peter and Garry Parsons (Puffin)
BENJAMIN ZEPHANIAH'S NATURE TRAIL by Benjamin Zephaniah and Nila Aye (Orchard Books)
TINY PENGUIN AND THE NEW BABY by Jane Porter (Simon and Schuster)