Playing by the book

Reviews of kids' books and the crazy, fun stuff they inspire us to do

Handmade Christmas (book) decorations inspired by Ernest and Celestine

A good story can right the world. It can draw you back from lonely grumpiness, or fed-up tiredness. It can make you feel human and connected once again. And this truth is at the gentle heart of Ernest & Celestine: Merry Christmas by Gabrielle Vincent, a charming, restorative seasonal read. Celestine is full of hope […]

Is it snowing yet? 2 winter reads shimmering with hoarfrost

Stoke up the fire and wrap yourself up in a warm blanket before settling down to enjoy Winter’s Child by Angela McAllister, illustrated by Grahame Baker-Smith (@GrahameBakerSmi), a gently haunting, somewhat melancholic but ultimately hopeful story full of delight, empathy and friendship. Young Tom cannot get enough of the snow. And when it also brings […]

Exciting Grammar, trolls and cake

Troll and the Oliver by Adam Stower is one of the funniest picture books I’ve read this year. It channels the wicked delight of Rosie’s Walk, with comforting echoes of the Three Billy Goats Gruff, and throws in gender myth-busting normality and laugh-out-loud humour with the perfect shot of adrenalin-fuelled surprise. It explores how friendship […]

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