Books for kids...

My Family Is a Zoo by KA Gerrard (Bloomsbury, €8.90)
This is a cheerful tale of shared interests told in simple rhyming narrative. 

The father acquired an elephant when he was three and Jumbo travels with him everywhere. 

Picking up on this, his youngest son has a bear called Teddy who too goes on car journeys. 

His sister has a whale, his brother a dinosaur, and even his grandparents have unusual pets. 

Young readers who are being introduced to unusual pets. 

They will love the sense of harmony in this family and enjoy Emma Dodd’s colourful illustrations. Suitable for age four and upwards.

Pattern-tastic Treasure Hunt by Hvass & Hannibal (Wide Eyed, €12.82)

The patterns in question are those seen in nature, whether on animals, insects, flora and even minerals. 

Beginning with spotty things, the reader is asked to match the pictures and their listed names. 

Books for kids...

On different coloured backgrounds, the book moves on to spiky, spirals, speckled and wavy things. 

A summary on the last page challenges the reader to identify one item which has not appeared on any of the earlier pages. 

The toddlers will love to point to the illustrations and learn their names, but words like terrapins and salamanders may be for older children. 

Still- great variety, colour and even practice in counting. 

The pages in this board book are imaginatively tagged and easy to turn. 

Suitable for age two to four with help! 

When We Collided by Emery Lord (Bloomsbury, €10.20)

This is a story of a fiery relationship between Vivi and Jonah in Verona Cove. 

Vivi is feisty in the extreme and at times seems hell bent on burning the candle of life at both ends. 

Initially, she is a storm of fresh air for morose Jonah who is still mourning the death of his father and the continuing depression of his mother. 

The story, told in alternate first- person narratives maps the troubled paths of their relationship which threatens to go off the rails when Vivi decides to stop taking her medication. 

The issue of mental health is expertly handled by a sympathetic author. Suitable for age 15 and upwards.


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