Of the 100 or so picture books on my daughters’ books shelf, this is my all-time favourite.
Who it’s for:
Girls aged 2-5
With her mother’s help, a little girl creates five paper dolls – Ticky, Tacky, Jackie-the-backie, Jim-with-two-noses, and Jo-with-the-bow.
Together, they go on a magical adventure through the house, and into the garden, confronting danger from a dinosaur, a tiger and a scissors-wielding little boy.
But the little girl saves her dolls by putting them in the safest place of all. Her memory.
Julia Donaldson has written more than 40 children’s picture books, including The Gruffalo. Enough said.
Why buy it:
It’s hard to know where to begin or end with my praise for this book.
Do I start by commenting on the gorgeous, pencil-drawn illustrations by Rebecca Cobb? Or the breathtaking economy and beauty of Julia Donaldson’s rhythmic prose? Or the wonderful messages about imagination, memory and resilience packed into this 32 page powerhouse? Or the lovely, thick, textural quality of the paper it’s printed on?
I could go on at length, about all of that. But I won’t. Here’s the bottom line: I read this book to my two year old for the first time last week. Since then, she’s demanded it at every bed-time. And I couldn’t be more delighted to read it to her.