Daniel Egneus

Tibble and Grandpa

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Grandpa always seems to be gardening. Tibble can’t understand it, but mum says that grandpa just needs time. Increasingly concerned, Tibble persists and gradually, Grandpa responds. Little by little, he opens up and answers as they talk about his favourite things. Playing the ‘Top Three’ game leads to a discussion about their top three Grannies whilst looking at the stars.

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This is such a beautiful story. Tibble’s longing for his Grandpa to notice him, talk to him, play with him is so poignant, underlining Grandpa’s all consuming grief. Moments of gentle humour balance this perfectly, using the top three game so effectively. Tibble’s answers show much about his personality and how he sees the world!

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The book shows the strength of grandparent/ grandchild relationships and how close these can be. When naming their top three grannies, Grandpa shares precious memories of his lost wife and the reader fully understands his grief, but also the healing power of love and togetherness.

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The illustrations are so atmospheric- Grandpa’s isolation in the early spreads emphasises his grief; Tibble is full of energy and enthusiasm- and then the beauty of Grandpa’s memories with the silhouette of Grandpa and Tibble, now so close, in the background. Perfect!

Poignant, beautifully illustrated and wonderfully warm, ‘Tibble and Grandpa’ is a delightful book, perfect for sharing. A real joy!

Tibble and Grandpa Wendy Meddour, illustrated by Daniel Egneus

OUP ISBN: 978-0192771957

You can read our review of Lubna and Pebble here.

NSTBA PICTURE BOOK CATEGORY LONG LIST part 2

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Here are the next five books on out Picture Book long list. Treasures one and all!

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Living in a city of tents, Lubna’s best friend is a pebble which she found on the beach the night she and her daddy arrived in a new country. She tells it everything and Pebble always listens to her stories. When a new boy arrives, Lubna and Pebble befriend him. However, when Lubna’s father tells her they are moving on, Lubna has a difficult decision to make. A beautiful book encouraging empathy and understanding, ‘Lubna and Pebble’ is full of the most wonderful illustrations. Thought-provoking and moving, it is essential reading.

Lubna and Pebble Wendy Meddour, illustrated by Daniel Egneus

OUP ISBN: 978-0192771940

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Full of colour and fun, ‘The Case of the Red Bottomed Robber!’ is a wonderful read. Who is stealing the young chalks drawings? And how will they stop this dastardly villain from continuing to erase the evidence? Bright colours on black backgrounds make the illustrations look as if they have been chalked directly onto each page and so many expressions are conveyed using just eyes and eyebrows as the culprit is identified, escapes and then the crime turns out to be a big misunderstanding! This is a great story for sharing, laughing over - and perhaps getting out the chalks! Just wonderful.

The Case of the Red Bottomed Robber! Richard Byrne

OUP ISBN: 978-0192749772

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A new twist on a modern classic, ‘The Little Green Hen’ see out heroine tending her apple tree and sowing its seeds. When she asks for help, three animals agree whereas others do not. Then the rains come and those with the hen are sheltered safe in the oak tree; those who are not are left floating on a log until they ask for help and are welcomed inside. As the animals work together to conserve the apple tree, its bounty continues to provide food and shelter for all of them. A lovely story about the importance of conservation and teamwork, ‘The Little Green Hen’ is full of bold, colourful illustrations and things to discuss.

The Little Green Hen Alison Murray

Orchard ISBN: 978-1408340202

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Whilst on a walk through the woods, Billy and Fatcat notice all the creatures have disappeared. Finding themselves kidnapped by the Terrible Beast, quick-thinking, resourceful Billy has to save everyone from ending up in the pot for dinner.Her hair hides a whole range of useful objects that will help to save the day and defeat the Beast. This is a wonderfully warm story showing the importance of standing up for others and defeating the monster- whatever form this might take. Billy is a delightful character, full of determination and brilliant ideas that will inspire! Lots of fun!

Billy and the Beast Nadia Shireen

Penguin ISBN: 978-1780080680

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Mixing fiction and information, the breathtaking illustrations and text follow the water cycle from the pool where a boy called Isaac plays on its journey to the vast seas and on to the other side of the world where it falls as rain on Cassi and her village before continuing back to Isaac in his pool. Celebrating all the wonders of water, the lyrical text and magical pictures are perfect for considering the wonders of the natural world, how our actions are connected and the many ways we find water in our world. Beautiful.

The Rhythm of the Rain Grahame Baker-Smith

Templar ISBN: 978-1787410145

You can read another review of this here.

Moth: An Evolution Story

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The peppered moth story is a famous example of natural selection and this beautiful book vividly brings it to life. Until the early 1800s, most of these moths were light with peppered wings, with a very rare dark variety. The moths’ wings help them to lie camouflaged on lichen-covered branches; however, with the advent of the Industrial Revolution and its pollution, the reverse became true. The darker variety became dominant as through natural selection, the darker moths were better adapted to their environment. As laws to reduce air pollution have been passed, the lichens have grown back and the light moths have returned and now both varieties can be seen.

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This book is a real gift to the Y6 teacher when teaching the Science P of S strand : to identify how animals and plants are adapted to suit their environment in different ways and that adaptation may lead to evolution. The story of the moth is told clearly, effortlessly explaining the ‘science bit’ and encouraging the reader to go and look for these wonderful creatures. A message of hope - hope for survival, hope for adaptation and hope for change. More detailed notes are included at the end, including the Latin name (Linnaeus’s binomial system!).

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In addition to the fascinating text the book is lavishly illustrated with stunning illustrations. From the stunning moth emerging from its cocoon to the dangers of predators to the menacing pollution to the cleaner skies, each spread is just gorgeous.

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‘Moth’ is both fascinating and beautiful- and an excellent resource for school! The perfect mix of art and science, it’s a real must have!

Moth: An Evolution Story Isabel Thomas, illustrated by Daniel Egneus

Bloomsbury ISBN: 978-1408889756