Words & numbers for sharp-eyed youngsters: ‘Mrs Koala’s Beauty Parlour’ by Catherine Jinks and Tania McCartney
Mrs Koala’s beauty parlour is so busy, with a succession of alliterative critters lining up to receive the feel-good ministrations of a skilled beauty therapist.
Each double page spread features different services offered by Mrs Koala, with fun for little ones who can join in the countdown, alliterative text and searching for the beauty parlour key, cleverly hidden in each scene.
There are 10 fancy frogs getting facials, 9 pampered porcupines getting perms, 8 trendy tigers getting trims, and so on, right down to 1 ‘kaput koala’ on the final page – Mrs Koala is tired after all that work!
The attractive colour illustrations by Tania McCartney invite close examination of each busy scene – and of course little ones will love to find the key on each page.
This is a sweet book that simply begs to be read aloud and I’m sure will be a favourite at story time.
Mrs Koala’s Beauty Parlour is published by Working Title Press (an imprint of Harper Collins Children’s Books in February 2022.
My thanks to the publishers for a review copy.
Delightful celebration of babies: ‘Before You Were Born’ by Katrina Germein & Hélène Magisson
A wonderful trend in children’s books is the move towards more inclusive story-telling, with protagonists and other characters from diverse backgrounds. Before You Were Born, by Australian author-illustrator duo Katrina Germein and Hélène Magisson, is no exception.
A celebration of new babies, this picture book depicts the preparations by different families for their babies’ arrival. We see the backyard barbecue, the special afternoon tea and lunch, the baby shower, a beach excursion and the first peek inside baby’s room. No matter what type of celebration, it’s clear that every baby’s birth is anticipated with love and excitement by each family.
The story is told in gentle rhyming couplets, illustrated on each double page spread by Hélène Magisson’s beautiful watercolour and pastel drawings:
We tumbled and played,Before You Were Born
we cuddled and kissed.
A special occasion
Not to be missed.
But all I could think of
for all of that time
was when I would hold you,
oh, baby of mine.
Before You Were Born is a joyous affirmation of love and families of all kinds and a beautiful way to share that with a very young child.
Before You Were Born is published in May 2021 by Working Title Press, an imprint of HarperCollins Children’s Books.
My thanks to the publishers for a copy to review.