WELLINGTON’S BIG DAY OUT by Steve Small (S&S £12.99, 32pp)


by Steve Small (S&S £12.99, 32pp) 

If you haven’t discovered Steve Small’s warm, witty picture books yet then start with this touching and funny celebration of childhood. 

It’s Wellington the elephant’s fifth birthday and he’s thrilled to be a year older but his new jacket, just like his dad’s, is too big. 

Or is Wellington just too small? He becomes increasingly anxious that he’s not growing fast enough, until a visit to his elderly grandad reassures him there’s no rush to be a grown-up and that he’s exactly the same size as his dad was at five. 

Pitch perfect and a rare treat to see three generations of male characters, too.


by Ruth Brown (Scallywag Press £12.99, 32pp) 

Award-winning artist and author Ruth Brown’s latest book is a feast for the eyes and the astonishing detail becomes more beautiful on each re-reading. 

Every spread is a game of ‘eye spy’ with a dawn-to-dusk scene from nature and a clue: can you guess the name of the hidden object and find it in the illustration (some are quite hard)? 

From the rising sun to slithery snails and shadowy owls, it encourages children to really look inside the pictures and to appreciate the rich textures of the natural world. A lovely book to read together before bed. 

LILIBET: THE GIRL WHO WOULD BE QUEEN by A.N. Wilson (Manilla £9.99, 112pp)


by A.N. Wilson (Manilla £9.99, 112pp) 

Just in time for the Platinum Jubilee, historian and writer A.N. Wilson has adapted his 1984 poem of the same name and turned it into a book celebrating the Queen. He imagines her falling asleep the night before her Jubilee celebrations (there’s a definite sense of her acceptance that the end of her life is approaching) and, as she drifts into a dream world, she conjures up her life from birth to the day she assumed the throne. 

The portrait that emerges is a child, young woman and sovereign who has put duty above all else. It’s packed with detail and conversations that bring to life all those who have been most important to her. 

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