Top That Publishing have sent me three lovely books to review – this was first off the pile.
It is written by Karen King and is illustrated by Marina le Ray and has a very amusing little message on the back of the book:
The back cover reads ‘WARNING: CHOKING HAZARD – Small parts. Not for children under 3 years’
The book is 10 x 10 inches, and has fold out flaps – it doesn’t look like a choking hazard to me. Mind you, it could be a risk if your child is prone to ripping books up into tiny pieces and eating them.
I love the book already! (I’m very sorry, I shouldn’t be laughing at my own jokes)
Both my kids seem to like this book, and have brought it over to me to read, several times since it arrived last week. My 5 year old daughter in particular likes it, and S drew on it, so I’m taking that as a stamp of approval.
It has a matt hardback cover, with nicely toned colours on, and the pages feel very sturdy so I think this should be a book that will last a while. The reason they are so sturdy is because each page appears to be made of thin card, rather than paper, and each has a fold out flap. My kids wreck flimsy books, often within weeks, so I welcome hardy books like this. I can think of at least 3 destroyed pop up books that have been bought as presents over the last few years, some didn’t even survive 24 hours.
This is why fold out flaps are a lasting favourite, they are very simple and effective. They don’t encourage children to yank at pages and pull books in bits like the aforementioned. My only criticism is that I have to lift the flaps, neither of my two have nails that can lift the edges. I feel this is a bit of a drawback as I like them to be able to read and look at books on their own as well as when they’re with me.
The book tells the tale of a cow that is hit on the head with an apple, and therefore can’t remember where she lives. She wanders around the farm yardlooking for her home, and tries other animals’ homes to see if they fit – with comic effect. D thought the bit where the cow got her head stuck in a rabbit hole was very funny. At this point I should really warn you - this review contains spoilers ;o)
The cow, named ‘Silly Moo’ because she keeps attempting to fit herself in inappropriately sized homes, is eventually hit over the head again by an apple wielded by a helpful hen. ‘Silly Moo’ is apparently cured, but is later found in the farmer’s bed, to the Farmer’s annoyance. The cow is led back to a field, where he is again hit over the head with an apple – I can only presume that there will be a sequel….
D has asked many questions about amnesia since reading this book, a subject I didn’t expect a children’s book to raise to be honest. I suspect the next time she falls over she’ll claim not to know her name or something, and will also conveniently forget how to tidy her room. Hold on a second, she’s already ‘forgotten’ how to tidy her room, so there’ll be no change there then!
All in all, I quite liked the book and so did D & S. It is pretty enough, with friendly colours and cute animals and the fold out pages add novelty too. It is £7.99, but it is a fairly big book and is obviously good quality, so I think the price is justified. It would make a lovely birthday or Christmas present. Having said that, I don’t think it’s anything reeeealy amazing, but it’s definitely something that’s nice to pick up every now and then.
Here's a link to their site: www.topthatpublishing.com/