Board Book Roundup: Spring 2013 Edition

Say & Play: Baby Animals

Considering that a favorite board book is likely to be read again and again, and may well be tragically lost and then joyfully rediscovered under the bed, in the toy box or at the bottom of the diaper bag, it makes sense to spend a little time selecting just the right book for the child […]

Les Petits Fairytales

Cinderella

Once upon a time, two Henry Holt board books arrived in our office. Cinderella and Snow White (October 2012) are part of the new Les Petits Fairytales series written by Trixie Belle and Melissa Caruso-Scott and illustrated by Oliver Lake. These minimalist texts (with one- or two-word explanations of each image) read like concept books, but […]

Board Book Roundup

Oxenbury_Babylove_300x300

Editors’ note: this inaugural column will be followed by twice-yearly roundups to be published on the Horn Book website, www.hbook.com — and don’t miss Viki Ash’s primer, “What Makes a Good Board Book?” online and in the March/April 2010 Horn Book Magazine. My fascination with board books began in 1987 with a quartet of them […]

May the Force be with you (and your reading!)

Star Wars Reads Day

[cue 20th Century Fox intro] [cue Star Wars theme song] Tomorrow, Saturday October 6, 2012 is the first National Star Wars Reads Day, designed to “celebrate reading and Star Wars.” While this may be an unusual pairing, I’m all for promoting events that encourage children to read. So in honor of the inaugural event, I’ve […]

My First Root Children

My First Root Children

Though we’re now far from the first blooms of spring, a board book edition of Sibylle von Olfers’ The Story of the Root Children (also published as When the Root Children Wake Up with English text by Helen Fish) has cropped up in the office. My First Root Children (Floris Books, June 2012) is an […]

“In the air…” and “On the water…”

Planes by Byron Barton

It’s Byron Barton’s Planes (March) and Boats (April) in app format from Oceanhouse Media and HarperCollins. Matching the books’ engaging simplicity and directness, both apps enhance the print versions without distracting users with over-the-top interactive elements. The text is read by an enthusiastic narrator, whether the sound is on or off. If you choose to […]

Pass the matzo!

Dayenu! A Favorite Passover Song

Oh, wait; that’s not unleavened bread, it’s a board book. In Dayenu: A Favorite Passover Song (Scholastic, February), Miriam Latimer illustrates everyone’s favorite Passover ditty. Instead of tongue-twisting Hebrew lyrics (fifteen verses worth!), the condensed text is twelve pages of cheerful, toddler-friendly gratitude, mostly in English: “When the Jews came out of Egypt, / That […]

Goo-goo gaga for graphic design

hippopposites

All the artsiest toddlers (and their parents) will be clamoring for these “coffee table board books” published by Appleseed, a new Abrams imprint catering to aesthetics-minded birth-to-five-year-olds. French import Hippopposites (May) by Janik Coat brings the hip to opposites books. In every spread, a pair of hippos demonstrates the featured concept. The old standbys are […]

Sticky Fingers

Chloe1month

Chloe (left) is a month old today so I’ve been perusing the new board books for some likely presents. I’m thinking she might (eventually) like two new Noodle books by Marion Billet, Noodle Loves to Eat and Noodle Loves the Beach, both published by Nosy Crow/Candlewick this month. Noodle is an ungendered panda-toddler who in […]

Gettin’ Bizzy

davies_on the farm

Benji Davies’s illustrations for the Bizzy Bear board books (Nosy Crow) are like catnip for young children. I defy any toddler or preschooler worth her salt to walk by a Bizzy Bear book and not pick it up. The wide-eyed, cheerful animals on the construction site (Let’s Get to Work!)  or traveling to the beach […]