Friday Free-For-All – A Book Week Celebration

Last week was Book Week. Run by the Children’s Book Council of Australia it celebrates the best Australian Children’s Books released this year and is also a national week of celebration throughout all Australian Schools, Preschools and Libraries.

So I thought I would get into the vibe of the celebration (if a little late!) and list three of my favourite books for preschoolers. (These books are both favourites of mine and of my two kids (2 & 4 years old)). Ohhh… and I will also just say these are not necessarily my favourites of all time (Dr Seuss would probably fill all three of those positions) but rather  books that you may not have heard of that I would like to recommend as additions to your library.

1. The Gobbling Tree by Mark Carthew and Susy Boyer

Ever had a ball stuck in a tree? Ever tried to use other objects, be it a stick or another ball, to get it back? When Zac’s cricket ball is swallowed by The Gobbling Tree he is not detered – he will get it back! Even if he has to send every available object he can find, up into the tree after it.

This story is told  with superb rhyme and rhythm and is beautifully illustrated. If your kids are not yelling out “Swish, Crick, Crack – Oh No cried Zac” with you by the end of the book I will give it away (note: this is just a saying I am not actually giving anything away 🙂 ).

2. The Pirate Cruncher by Jonny Duddle

This is a book I only discovered a few weeks ago when I borrowed it from the local library but I can guarantee I will be buying it the first chance I get. (I should probably insert a warning here that this book does not end well for the pirates, so if your kids are a bit squeamish or prone to nightmares I might skip this one. :))

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When a fiddler comes to town spouting tales of a vast treasure, that he just happens to have a map for, he attracts the attention of the dastardly Captain Purplebeard. But perhaps they should heed the Fiddler’s warnings! This book is hilarious and comes with an awesome twist (that makes for great re-reads as it really isn’t much of a suprise if you pay close attention). The illustrations are fabulous and it is easy to realise that the author, Jonny Diddle, has his roots in arts.

Keep a look out for the Pirate Cruncher’s tentacles hidden on each page! And don’t forget to check out the names on the map at the start of the book.

3. The Things I Love About Bedtime by Trace Moroney

Now this book could actually be any of Trace Moroney’s ‘The Things I Love About’ Series, or even any of the books from her ‘When I’m Feeling’ Series. All of these books are fabulous and I highly recommend them all. But the ‘Bedtime’ book is a favourite for my kids, particularly as we normally read it at bedtime ourselves. My daughter particularly likes the page that mentions talking about your favourite things you did that day, and since reading this book that has become a regular discussion point for us at bedtime.

Once again the illustrations are beautiful, and when the rabbit reads his own bedtime story he just happens to be reading the same book as you 🙂 which is a very clever touch.

So, have you read any of my recommendations? Did you like them? Do you have a favourite children’s book? Do you have any recommendations for me? I love to hear from you.

Jody Moller