For the very young Nicola Killen has written two new boardbooks on Noises (as if children need help with that!), and on Opposites. Both books have liftable flaps which makes it a lot more fun. The Noises book is fairly obvious, inviting parents to roar like lions. You know the drill. The Opposites are more varied, and it’s not only small versus big.
I am increasingly realising Offspring were deprived at that stage.
As the readers get older, or maybe just more capable, you can move on to alphabet books. Kelly Bingham and Paul O Zelinsky (they almost manage the A to Z with their own names…) have written a slightly different one; Z is for Moose. Yes, quite.
It is slightly crazy, with a moose who is impatiently waiting for his letter ( and I bet the mouse was too), and then trying to slip in wherever he can. Queen Victoria wasn’t amused.
Counting Sheep by Kathryn Cave and Chris Riddell isn’t exactly your normal bedtime book either. Here you have a boy who doesn’t settle for counting sheep and then falling asleep in an obliging way.
The book is a little like a board game and there is so much happening I’m not sure anyone will be sleeping. Learning to count might well be a success, however. Although, once you’ve looked at all the fantastic detail in Chris’s illustrations you could possibly feel a little sleepy.
More adventurous games for readers in Kristina Stephenson’s Charlie Stinky Socks and the Tale of the Wizard’s Whisper. It’s a bit of a wild goose chase, actually, but all is well in the end.