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Get in the Good Books

How would you like to get in the good books …? It could be the good books of family, friends, acquaintances - of anyone, really. Right now we all want to get in the good books of Santa, of course! Well, we can be your New Year, 2022 January Santa… for over the next 3 weeks we are featuring 3 books a week from our friends and Thames & Hudson who want to bundle up all 9 books – yes that is all 9 books – and send them to one lucky winner.

What do you have to do to win? Read each of the blogs - this one and the next two - leave us a comment telling us whose good books you would like to be in and why, and you could be our very lucky winner. What an amazing start to 2022 this could be for someone!

Now to the books - well the first set of three - that we have to share with you. I have been blown away by these books. By their quality, by their content, by the desire of the authors and illustrators to instruct, entertain and absolutely delight each and every reader. I have (sort of) grouped the books together to follow (sort of) themes and the first one is the sea and the stars: two picture books and a stunning non-fiction complete with laser cut flaps throughout.

Starting with:

If I Had An Octopus is a rhyming wonder, an exploration of animals that live under and on the ocean. Would you like to have a shrimp or go as big as a whale?, we are asked. Perhaps for you a dolphin would be grand, but what our character really wants is a pet to hold their hand. Don’t you know that a jellyfish is far too wobbly and a crab, of course, has too many claws. The best pet is absolutely going to have to be an octopus. Of course, the octopus can multi-task and help with everything from counting to art! The wonder of the pet is endless and the imagination of the character knows no bounds. Smile with delight at all the antics in this books, at the bright, bold illustration and at the wonder of words. Written by Gabby Dawnay & illustrated by Alex Barrow.

Having found ourselves a pet from the sea now it is time for us to go Out to Sea with author illustrator Helen Kellock. Lara was tucked up cosy in bed with pictures of the sea on her bedroom wall and bunny keeping her company. But the trouble is Lara cannot sleep; she misses Nana and sad thoughts fill her head. Memories fill her mind and the tears fall … they fall … they fall. The fall so much that soon they fill the bedroom and Lara is carried away, far from all she knows and off to the sea. When Lara gets to the deep belly of the ocean, she finds something very special, something that will help her, give her the strength to row home, to keep going and to hold those memories close. A beautiful book about holding memories and loved ones close.

From the sea to the stars, we go up to The Sky, a stunningly crafted book from Héleéne Druvert with text by Juliette Einhorn. The sky - we see it every time we look up or we look out. We have gazed upon it, studied it, longed to see more of it, to explore it since the start of history. Are you curious? I know I am. With such incredibly intricate laser cuts as the ones you will find in this book, alongside the enchanting illustration the moon - for example changes from a big white circle to a place inhabited with wonder - turn over the laser cut and explore the constellations. This is just one among many examples and I was there for hours! Learn not only about the sky and its wonders but the nature that populates it too - not forgetting the weather it sends us and the flying machines created to explore it.

Open up any one of these books and you will be awed. I was, and I cannot wait to see whose good books you would like to be in so that you too can enjoy all the wonders of these and more.


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