A Picture Book Appreciation Post (Part Two)

(Part One)

picture books

Some of the loveliest, prettiest and funniest picture books I’ve seen in the past week.

Be a Friend
Dennis is an ordinary boy who expresses himself in extraordinary ways. Some children do show-and-tell. Dennis mimes his. Some children climb trees. Dennis is happy to BE a tree . . . But being a mime can be lonely. It isn’t until Dennis meets a girl named Joy that he discovers the power of friendship–and how special he truly is! At its core, this book is a heartwarming story of self-acceptance, courage, and unbreakable friendship for anyone who has ever felt “different.”
(Its such a lovely message and so heartwarming)

The Famishing Vanishing Mahoosive Mammoth
The famishing vanishing mahoosive mammoth is a hairy beast who simply can’t think of anything but his tummy. So how, then, can his friend Bug distract him?
Find out in this hilarious rhyming picture book about one hairy mammoth with a ridiculously large appetite, and one loyal friend with a clever plan.
(clever and brilliant and impossible to read aloud)

Dog on a Train
A young boy drops his hat as he’s rushing out of the house. His faithful friend picks it up and follows and so the adventure begins!
(This book has no words but still tells a beautiful story and you just have to go awwww)

I Will Love you Anyway
I don’t do ‘sit!’
I don’t do ‘stay!’
But I will love you anyway.
From the celebrated creators of Kipper, Wibbly Pig, and Zoe and Beans comes a picture book to treasure. Dog is very badly behaved – he destroys everything, chases cars and won’t stop running away! But when he finds himself lost and alone there is one person he can count on.

Witches and Fairies
Witches and fairies are different and, needless to say, they play different games. Witches play witches’ games, like turning princes into frogs. And fairies play fairy games, like turning frogs back into princes. And, then there’s Clotilda.
(This is so stunning, in both story and pictures. I fell in love with it the second I opened it)

Little Frog
When Little Frog drops into the lives of a very normal family chaos ensues.
(Its just hilarious)


On the TBR Pile: Uprooted by Naomi Novik


Agnieszka loves her valley home, her quiet village, the forests and the bright shining river. But the corrupted Wood stands on the border, full of malevolent power, and its shadow lies over her life. Her people rely on the cold, driven wizard known only as the Dragon to keep its powers at bay. But he demands a terrible price for his help: one young woman handed over to serve him for ten years, a fate almost as terrible as falling to the Wood. The next choosing is fast approaching, and Agnieszka is afraid. She knows – everyone knows – that the Dragon will take Kasia: beautiful, graceful, brave Kasia, all the things Agnieszka isn’t, and her dearest friend in the world. And there is no way to save her. But Agnieszka fears the wrong things. For when the Dragon comes, it is not Kasia he will choose.

The School for Good and Evil, Soman Chainani


The first kidnappings happened two hundred years before. Some years it was two boys taken, some years two girls, sometimes one of each. But if at first the choices seemed random, soon the pattern became clear. One was always beautiful and good, the child every parent wanted as their own. The other was homely and odd, an outcast from birth. An opposing pair, plucked from youth and spirited away.
This year, best friends Sophie and Agatha are about to discover where all the lost children go: the fabled School for Good & Evil, where ordinary boys and girls are trained to be fairy tale heroes and villains. As the most beautiful girl in Gavaldon, Sophie has dreamed of being kidnapped into an enchanted world her whole life. With her pink dresses, glass slippers, and devotion to good deeds, she knows she’ll earn top marks at the School for Good and graduate a storybook princess. Meanwhile Agatha, with her shapeless black frocks, wicked pet cat, and dislike of nearly everyone, seems a natural fit for the School for Evil.
But when the two girls are swept into the Endless Woods, they find their fortunes reversed—Sophie’s dumped in the School for Evil to take Uglification, Death Curses, and Henchmen Training, while Agatha finds herself in the School For Good, thrust amongst handsome princes and fair maidens for classes in Princess Etiquette and Animal Communication.. But what if the mistake is actually the first clue to discovering who Sophie and Agatha really are…?

I don’t think I’ve ever been more conflicted about a book and what to think of it.

I must have finished this about two weeks ago, and I’ve sat on the review the whole time because I honestly don’t know what I think. I’m half way through the second book, and I still don’t know what to think.

Anyone who knows me knows I love and adore fairytales with all my heart, so, of course, this book had been on my list to look at for a while. I had heard a lot of good stuff about it- but, upon opening it, I was so disappointed.

It had promise. That is the really annoying thing- had the author chosen to do some things differently, then this book could have been amazing, brilliant, and a book that teaches more lessons than the one inside it.

(Not that friends over princes is a bad lesson, its a great thing to learn. But the way he goes around it?)

Thing is- what we have is a book with two female mains- who are around 12 or 13- but it’s…written by a guy. And here is where most of my problems lie.

I mean, swordfights are written like sex scenes (In the words of my mother ‘is that crap out of a Mills and Boon?’), the girls are….Well, evil is ugly and good is beautiful. And according to the book, at is basically it. Like, the Good girls are all really judgemental if you arent as pretty as them- and, maybe my teen years were different, but 12 and 13-year-olds? Literally don’t care. At all.

Evil and Good both have rules. Like, evil can never love and good will always forgive- and I know the point of the book was to take the cliches and laugh at them, but if you write a set of rules for your world, stick to them? Evil are the ones who are all good friends and good are all horrible, which means the whole world feels so…unplanned.

The two Mains (again, their age, 13) spend most of the book fighting over a guy.

This is a book aimed at 10+. In all honestly, I would never recommend this to a child, because it teaches so many wrong lessons. That only guys can be adventurous and learn to fight. Girls have to wear make up and have wavy blonde hair to be perfect, and if they are not that, they are evil witches who will never find love. That there is no grey between the Good and Evil- you are either one or the other.

There was more than one point while I was reading that I just wanted to throw it in a bin.

But I pushed through- because, despite the massive issues with it, I enjoyed it. It was entertaining, and I kinda wanted to know what the world was about. It kept my interest throughout, because I wanted to see how it would end- and I enjoyed it enough that I have got the other two books.

I mean, I hate Sophie so much- her character is flat (which isn’t really her fault, but the writing and the written by guy thing) and unbelievable. Agatha is slightly better- though her ‘makeover’ to princess was a bit…terrible… But I like the idea of their friendship and how much they would do for each other, and I think some of the Princes are interesting.

So…I dont know. I honestly dont know if I would recommend this book or not.

Currently Reading: The Last Ever After

last ever after

In the epic conclusion to Soman Chainani’s New York Times bestselling series, The School for Good and Evil, everything old is new again as Sophie and Agatha fight the past as well as the present to find the perfect end to their story.
As A World Without Princes closed, the end was written and former best friends Sophie and Agatha went their separate ways. Agatha was whisked back to Gavaldon with Tedros and Sophie stayed behind with the beautiful young School Master.
But as they settle into their new lives, their story begs to be re-written, and this time, theirs isn’t the only one. With the girls apart, Evil has taken over and the villains of the past have come back to change their tales and turn the world of Good and Evil upside down.

On the TBR Pile: I’ll Give You the Sun, by Jandy Nelson


Jude and her twin Noah were incredibly close – until a tragedy drove them apart, and now they are barely speaking. Then Jude meets a cocky, broken, beautiful boy as well as a captivating new mentor, both of whom may just need her as much as she needs them. What the twins don’t realize is that each of them has only half the story and if they can just find their way back to one another, they have a chance to remake their world.

The July FariyLoot Box!


This is my second box I’ve got- the second I saw the theme was ‘Pirates’ I was like YES I AM HAVING THAT.

So FairyLoot works like the more well known OwlCrate- you buy a box (for around £30) and you get a book and bookish gifts.

It’s a really good idea, and I never seem to be disappointed it what arrives.

In this months box I got

  • Two books- a signed and dedicated copy of Inherited, as well as a letter from the author.
  • An ARC of a book that is coming out next year.
  • A Notebook (We all know I love notebooks)
  • A mini Daenerys Targaryen keyring
  • A ‘currently reading’ bookmark to colour in.
  • Coconut lip balm, which smells amazing
  • A bathbomb which also smells amazing

I can’t wait to read both the books (And I’m gently crying at how big my TBR is getting now) and that bag is going everywhere with me.

If you have ever thought of getting a book subscription box, I really recommend this one!

On the TBR Pile: Am I Normal Yet and How Hard can Love Be, by Holly Bourne


All Evie wants is to be normal. She’s almost off her meds and at a new college where no one knows her as the girl-who-went-crazy. She’s even going to parties and making friends. There’s only one thing left to tick off her list…

But relationships are messy – especially relationships with teenage guys. They can make any girl feel like they’re going mad. And if Evie can’t even tell her new friends Amber and Lottie the truth about herself, how will she cope when she falls in love?