“ Genre: Junior Book / Author: Jane Horne / 12 pages / Book published 2011-01-01 by Make Believe Ideas „
There is little more that my daughter loves than to spot an animal, either while out on a walk or a picture in a book. Both get the same reaction, an over-excited squeal as she points out her finger and wriggles in anticipation. She is 17 months old now and her unique little personality never fails to make us smile.
After dropping my son off at his nursery, I was doing the usual mundane chore of picking up items from Morrison's that had been forgotten with the weekly shop, when she suddenly let out one of her 'I've spotted an animal' squeals, pointing excitedly towards shelf of magazines and books. When I took a closer look, I saw exactly what she had spotted, a range of books called Baby Loves. I picked up one which I thought would appeal to her, with a rather cute puppy on the front cover, Baby Loves Baby Animals. I placed it into her outstretched hands before making my way to the till.
This book has a recommended retail of price of £3.99 and although I can't be certain, I do think that I actually paid £2.99 in Morrison's. It is available from Amazon at the RRP of £3.99 with free delivery.
The back page states that this book is suitable for children from 0+ and so this is a good safe choice as a first book. It does say that parental guidance is needed, as is with any book or toy.
This is an almost circular book which measures 15 x 14.8 x 1.5cm. It is a board book and a rather robust one too. It feels nicely sturdy and chunky and each page has a shiny surface. I can confirm, having done this a few times now, that this does indeed make it very easy to wipe clean with a damp cloth or baby wipe.
Each page has a colourful circular shape protruding from the edge. These, being different colours and sizes, act as tabs which make it much easier to turn the pages. The back page is also larger in size than the pages before it so although it all looks slightly miss-match, it is quite easy to flick though. Much easier for little hands too of course.
The format inside is very simple. Each two page set displays two photographs of one type of baby animal. We begin with ducklings, then kittens, puppies, rabbits and finally foals. The photographs selected are bright, clear and very endearing. Each one has received an excited squeal and point from my little girl, in some case followed by a full-on hug of the page!
The back cover states that this is 'A lively series of books to stimulate very young children and promote their development.' It also says that this book promotes hand-eye co-ordination. The colourful tabs on the edges I presume are good practice for this. Apart from this, in terms of educational benefit, there is little else here other than teaching the names of different animals. Though as it is clearly aimed at very young children there is perhaps not much more that could be taught. Still, if it encourages young children to pick up the book and look through the pages, then that is a good start on the right road.
In terms of durability this book is almost perfect. Although we have only owned it a few months, due to its popularity, it has not yet left the downstairs toy box and has been picked up, carried around and read numerous times since its purchase. Other books have not fared as well so I would say that the quality of this one is very good.
In summary, this is a simple little book but very robust. It is priced well, although in my opinion the reduced price of £2.99 is probably more suitable due to its size and simplicity. It is attractive and has some education benefit, though not as much as some books. I would recommend this for any young child who is beginning to explore first board books and has a love for animals as my daughter does.