Children’s books

All Aboard The Dinosaur Express
by Timothy Knapman and Ed Eaves
(Bloomsbury €8.80.)

A group of colourful, scaly little dinosaurs are full of excitement as they board the Dinosaur Express which will whisk them and their teacher across the pre-historic plains and hills to see live volcanos, spiny creatures and

flying meteors. With vibrant, child-friendly art-work and many wonders to see, this is definitely a fun book to share with three to five year-olds.

The Wordsmith by Patricia Forde (Little Island €10.05)

Young Letta’s unusual occupation is as assistant to The Wordsmith, who is the official collector and distributor of words. The setting is in a dystopian world devastated by the great melting of the icecaps, where water is now the new currency and an extreme literary censorship sees the use of words limited to a basic list of 500. Here Letta puzzles over the etymology of L o l from a long forgotten civilisation - ours.

This community is lorded over by John Noa, where any of the inhabitants of his Ark who use non-listed words are

summarily banished to die of thirst and famine in the wilderness. When The Wordsmith himself disappears, Letta is chosen to succeed him, but soon discovers that Noa’s evil plan is to ban the use of words totally as a means of completely subjugating the population.

As the community is paralysed by fear and uncertainty ,Letta’s only hope is to seek help from outside an alien, fearful environment, where, as one of the establishment, she would be decidedly unwelcome. This is an imaginative story. Age 12+

A Time Traveller’s Guide To Life, the Universe And Everything by Ian Flitcroft and Britt Spencer (O’Brien €14.99) If this graphic novel doesn’t convert young readers to the joys of science, physics ,astronomy, astrology, and life itself , then nothing will.

A witty kaleidescope of illustrations cleverly masks the seriousness of the issues being explained. The caricatures, and the antics of the philosophers and nerds are hilarious . Age 10+ and adult.


Lifestyle

It turns out 40 is no longer the new 30 – a new study says 47 is the age of peak unhappiness. The mid-life crisis is all too real, writes Antoinette Tyrrell.A midlife revolution: A new study says 47 is the age of peak unhappiness

More From The Irish Examiner