Read books this holidays, keep children entertained, say children’s booksellers

Next week, there will be tens of thousands of children looking for something to do for two weeks. What better way to unwind than to read a book?

Our members include several specialist children’s booksellers, and Sheila from the Children’s Bookshop Auckland and Christchurch, and John from the Children’s Bookshop Wellington were happy to give us their top tips for reads this Spring school holidays.

Sheila Sinclair from the Dorothy Butler Children’s Bookshop in Auckland and Christchurch Children’s Bookshop has showcased books that could be shared together by several age groups in one family and encourage creativity and interest in exploring similar themes:

The Big Book of Artcv_the_big_book_of_art
Author Herve Tullet
Phaidon Press Ltd  RRP $30.00
ISBN 9780714863498

By the creator of the popular Press Here, a book for all ages, this just released thick, spiral bound book will entertain and divert on many levels. Split pages of quirky scribbles, shapes, letters, signs and lines allow the readers to mix and match the patterns and paintings by simply turning the pages. Then go and visit the nearest art gallery to study modern art, buy plenty of paper and paint and continue the experience by encouraging children to paint their own art work. Like other works by Tullet, this book would be also quite at home of the coffee table to allow grown-ups a change to indulge their inner artist.

The Book of Complete Nonsensecv_the_book_of_complete_nonsense
Vintage Children’s Classics  RRP: $14.99
ISBN 9780099582663

From Vintage Classics this modest little paperback book of rhymes and riddles will entertain and amuse children of all ages. They will discover verse by Edward Lear, Lewis Carroll, Ogden Nash, Roald Dahl, Spike Milligan. Michael Rosen and Julia Donaldson along with the famous Anonymous and many more familiar poets. Then go out and look for some of the other marvellous books of poetry to share together.

Just So Storiescv_just_so_stories
by Rudyard Kipling, Illustrator Robert Ingpen
Walker Books Australia
ISBN 9781922077493

Rediscover a classic. This just released beautiful hardback book should be in every home library. Robert Ingpen is an award winning illustrator who book by book is bringing the characters of classic children’s books to life through his wonderfully atmospheric illustrations.

“This was the first book I truly loved, and I still marvel at the inventiveness of Rudyard Kipling” – from author Michael Morpurgo.

Modern Art In Actioncv_modern_art_in_action
by Maja Pitamic, Jill Laidlow
New Holland  RRP $29.99
ISBN 9781906761400

An introduction to paintings and art activities for children from around six and up and covering Sculpture, Abstract, Illustration, Pop Art, Collage, Portraits, Textiles and Street Art. This book explores the stories and meanings of twenty one key masterpieces of art to inspire children to create their own imaginative artworks on the same themes. There are clear instructions on fun projects based on the twenty one works presented in the book. It may help to stock up on materials before the holidays begin.

The McElderry Book of Greek Myths
Retold by Eric A. Kimmel, Illustrated by P. Montserrat
Margaret K. McElderry Books  RRP: $31.00
ISBN 9781416915348
There is a renewed interest in the Greek Myths, probably as a result of the popularity the Percy Jackson books by Rick Riordan.  Introduce all the family to these amazing legends of Greek mythology, Pandora and her dreaded box, Icarus with his wings of wax,  and greedy gold-fingered King Midas. Eric Kimmel was once a storyteller and his retelling of these stories brings them to life with language that is easy to read aloud.  The illustrations have colourful classical imagery and bring another dimension to this beautiful picture book.

John McIntyre put the question to his staff at the Children’s Bookshop in Kilbirnie, and they have come up with a good selection of fiction for your children to enjoy:

Spud – Exit Pursued by a Bear
by John van de Ruit
Penguin  RRP $23.00
ISBN 9780141348278

John is hoping that Spud -Exit Pursued by a Bear  is not cv_spud_exit_pursued_by_a_bearactually the last in the Spud series, but that there will be a way to continue the mad cap antics of this bunch of hormonal boys in a South African boarding school in the early 1990’s. He’s had considerable success selling the books to teenage boys ( the group whose cerebral cortexes regularly oscillate between their skull and their groin), and has also had many a parent reading them to find out what the hilarity coming from the bedroom was all about.

Russian Roulette
by Anthony Horowitz
Walker Books RRP $24.99cv_russian_roulette
ISBN 9781406350869

Senior Bookseller Heidi Vooorendt  has read Russian Roulette, a prequel to the Alex Rider series by Anthony Horowitz. This tells the story of Yassen Gregorovich, an assassin hired to kill the 14 year old schoolboy-turned-spy. Written in diary form, it explains Yassen’s past life and what happened to turn him into an international contract killer. The story is full of action and intrigue, and has a dark underbelly not always evident in the rest of the series.

Mind Your Gramma
by Yvonne Morrison
Published by Scholastic RRP $21.00cv_mind_your_gramma
ISBN 9781775430414

Sasha Martin has loved the wordplay in Mind Your Gramma by Yvonne Morrison.  It is a sneaky way of making the reinforcement of correct language and diction fun. The ” deliberate misunderstandings” appeal to the sense of humour of adults, teachers and parents.
That Is Not A Good Idea
by Mo Willems
Walker Books
ISBN 9781406349412cv_that_is_not_a_good_ideaRuth has just returned from 3 weeks in the USA so it is appropriate that her choice is from there. She has chosen the new Mo Willem’s book That Is Not A Good Idea, a play on an amalgam of fairy tales and Aesop’s Fables with a great twist . His hilarious signature cartoon-style illustrations complement the package.

With these fantastic books in the stores this holidays, your kids will have no excuse to say ‘I’m Boooored’.

Be in to win a pack of children’s books for older or younger readers on our website

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