Fun and fascinating books

An Adventurer’s Guide to Outer Space by Isabel Thomas & Yas Imamura (2020) 

Join adventurer Mia on an interactive voyage beyond the stars. Young readers will be left starstruck as they discover new asteroids, spot spectacular constellations and visit the International Space Station. Packed full of facts and interactive activities, this guide is sure to inspire the young space explorers of the future.

The Ladybird Big Book of Slimy Things by Imogen Russell Williams & Binny Talib (2020)

While slime can be messy and sticky in real life – this book teaches you all about it, without having to touch any! After their adventure in the Museum of Dead Things, the fox family return to explore the Museum of Slimy Things. Inside they will discover the different types of slime found on land and sea, and even inside our bodies! Children will meet the gelatinous hagfish and stumble through the museum’s slimy swamp in this fun and gloopy book.

F is for Feminism by Carolyn Suzuki (2019)

F is for Feminism is the perfect handbook for young activists. This dictionary of 26 thought-provoking words from A-Z will equip children with the vocabulary they need when learning about equality. Illustrator Carolyn Suzuki’s bright and inclusive artwork will leave children of all ages feeling engaged and empowered.

Ladybird London: Search and Find by Klara Hawkins (2019)

This incredibly detailed book is full of fascinating facts about London and makes a great read for anyone planning a trip to the capital city – parents as well as children. With hundreds of things to spot on every page and stories about all the best-known London landmarks, it’s a great read-aloud activity book and is sure to keep children entertained for hours (maybe, say, on a long train trip into London?)

Ladybird Audio Adventures: Deep Sea Dive (2019)

Deep Sea Dive is an audiobook with a difference – part of the Ladybird Audio Adventures series, it takes listeners on an incredible underwater journey of discovery. Join adventurer Cassandra and Missy the raven as they glide through the world’s oceans onboard Cassandra’s newest invention, the water strider. Audiobooks are wonderful for entertaining children pre-bedtime and are great for listening to on long journeys.

Choose Llamas by Charlie Green & Matt Hunt (2019)

Llamas may not be known for encouraging decision-making skills, but this laugh-out-loud paperback is set to change all that. In this highly amusing and wonderfully drawn book, your five-year-old gets to choose their very own llama squad – from superhero sidekick to intergalactic explorer, each page invites the reader to pick one of five llamas to join them on an adventure. Every llama has its own unique style and personality, encouraging discussion and lots of hilarity as your child makes their llama squad picks. 

Bedtime books & stories

Ladybird Stories for 5 Year Olds (2020)

Make every bedtime special with this enchanting collection of classic tales perfectly suited for five-year-olds. From the story of Jack and the magic beans he brings home (as well as the very unfriendly giant he meets) to how the little mermaid came to walk on land, the beautiful illustrations alongside these favourite fairy tales will ensure this is a book your little one will treasure long after they’re five.

Ten Minutes to Bed: Little Mermaid by Rhiannon Fielding & Chris Chatterton (2019)

Deep beneath the sea, it’s time for a little mermaid called Splash to go to bed – but the trouble is, she’s having way too much fun. This gorgeous story is a great bedtime read for any sleep-resistant mermaid-lover, as they join in with counting down to Splash’s bedtime. The bright and bold illustrations are full of character and the story’s gentle rhyming structure helps to slow things down until your little one is ready to say goodnight. 

Pablo’s Feelings (2020)

Pablo has autism which means sometimes his face and his feelings don’t quite match up. He really wants to go to his cousin Lorna’s house but his mum can’t tell because she’s struggling to read the expression on his face. Luckily Pablo has his friends, the Book Animals, on hand to help him work out a way to let people know what he is thinking.

Ladybird Tales of Super Heroes (2019)

Dip into this fantastic collection of myths and legends and try out a bedtime story with a difference. With illustrations from a number of wonderfully talented artists, children will love exploring this colourful compilation of timeless tales. It features Gods and Goddesses, heroes and heroines, and a whole range of tricksters and shape-shifters. Award-winning author David Solomon provides the introduction to this anthology, with stories including Anansi the Spider-Man, Loki and the Magical Hammer, Inanna in the Underworld, Hanuman, Demon Fighter, Shahrazad the Storyteller and The Legend of Hua Mulan.

Ladybird Audio Adventures: Amazing Vehicles (2019)

Eccentric inventor Cassandra and her super clever raven Missy are back with another incredible audio adventure. This time they’re using Cassandra’s hover-teleporter to help the Transport Museum track down some amazing vehicles. From helicopters to cars to submarines, this audiobook takes listeners from sky to land to sea and everywhere in between. 

Beautiful gift books

Sensational Butterflies by Ben Rothery (2019)

Stimulate your child’s curiosity with this sensational butterfly book. With simple text, gorgeous illustrations and lots of fascinating facts, this large-format book shines a spotlight on the vibrant, shimmering world of butterflies and moths. Young readers will be fascinated to learn about these amazing creatures, from how they see to where they live to their incredible wingspans. This is a wonderful book for inspiring children to take an interest in nature and the world around them.

The Big Book of the UK by Imogen Russell Williams & Louise Lockhart (2019)

From Scotland to Wales and England to Northern Ireland, the UK has some amazing stories to tell – and you’ll find quite a few of them here, in the Big Book of the UK. With all sorts of facts about wildlife, food, sports, geography, language and history, readers of this book will find themselves uncovering national secrets and unearthing local legends – and that goes for adults, as well as children. Oh, and look out for a fair few silly place names, too.

Hidden Planet by Ben Rothery (2019)

A ‘love letter’ to Planet Earth – this is the perfect gift for animal lovers. Natural history illustrator Ben Rothery had himself as a boy in mind when he created this stunning children’s book. His passion for the natural world shines through in his beautifully detailed pictures. Young readers will learn amazing facts about birds and animals, some of which are endangered and need our help. This is a book which can be enjoyed by the whole family and is guaranteed to be one you’ll return to time and time again. 

Books for first school experiences

Topsy and Tim: Start School (2009)

Join family favourites Topsy and Tim on their very first day of school. From the classroom to the playground to the canteen and back again, young readers will discover how much fun school can be as they follow Topsy, Tim and their friends through their first day. This is a great read for children starting out on their own school adventure, showing them what they can expect and providing gentle reassurance to even the most nervous new student.

Topsy and Tim: Help a Friend (2015)

Topsy and Tim want to help one of their school friends, Stevie Dunton; Stevie is unhappy at school because he is being bullied. Topsy and Tim aren’t sure what to do, but just by talking to their Mummy and to Miss Terry, they are able to help Stevie. This sensitively told story gently shows children what bullying is and why it is wrong, helping them understand why, if they ever find themselves in a similar situation, telling an adult is the best thing to do.

Topsy and Tim Sports Day (2014)

The first year at school is full of new experiences, and sports day is no exception. Follow Topsy and Tim as they take part in their very first sports day together, getting involved in lots of different races, as they have fun being active and enjoying the day with their friends. This book will show youngsters what to expect and even why taking part is more important than winning.

Topsy and Tim: Have Itchy Heads (2011)

Catching head lice is never fun, but this funny and engaging story will help reassure any child going through this unpleasant experience. When Topsy and Tim realise the reason that their heads are so itchy is because they have caught head lice at school, nobody is best pleased – least of all Mummy. Luckily, she knows a way to get rid of the problem and, with the right treatment, it’s not long before those nasty nits are gone. 

Books to help their school learning

My Little Pony First Numbers Activity Book (2018)

Develop your child’s familiarity with numbers with this activity book, packed with stickers and bright sparkly illustrations. My Little Pony fans will love learning with Twilight Sparkle, Rarity, Pinkie Pie and their friends, using their newfound number skills to help their favourite Ponies as they work through the activities. Numbers are introduced one by one, and as well as encouraging their counting abilities children will also get to practise their pencil skills and number recognition. 

First Pencil Practice: Ladybird I'm Ready to Write Sticker Activity Book (2016)

With charming illustrations, fun activities and plenty of stickers to decorate their designs with, First Pencil Practice is an absorbing way of helping children develop the fine motor skills that are essential for writing. They’ll get to practise their early skills, from drawing straight, wavy and zig-zag lines to colouring pictures and staying within the lines. There’s also specific help for left-handed writers and plenty of ways to encourage creativity, including making birthday cards and even drawing a monster…

My Little Pony First Phonics Activity Book (2018)

The perfect guide for phonics newbies, this sticker activity book takes children through a series of activities designed to build up their reading and spelling comprehension and confidence. Twilight Sparkle and her Pony friends are on hand to guide young readers through the exercises. Letters and sounds are introduced in a systematic order, making it easy to follow. With lots of colourful illustrations and stickers to use, this is a fun way to support your child’s school learning at home while helping to develop their phonics skills.

Cinderella – Read It Yourself with Ladybird Level 1 (2013)

If you know a princess-loving new reader, make their dreams come true and introduce them to this Read It Yourself version of the classic fairy tale. Cinderella is longing to go to the ball, but she’s stuck at home in her rags – that is, until her Fairy Godmother turns up. Young readers can follow Cinderella’s adventures by reading the story out loud, at home or in a guided reading session. Simple sentences and repeated words make it easy to follow, building confidence and encouraging children to have fun with their reading.

Peppa Pig: Daddy Pig’s Office – Read It Yourself with Ladybird Level 2 (2017)

This Level 2 Read It Yourself book is designed for children who can already read simple sentences and are ready to move on in their reading journey. Peppa Pig fans will enjoy telling this story, as they join Peppa and George on a visit to Daddy Pig’s office. The text includes many high-frequency words that are vital for improving reading comprehension, and the book has been put together by experts to encourage independent reading at home as well as guided reading during a school session.

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